Gerling Match
Chess960 World Championship

Svidler vs Aronian




Games in pgn-Format (Use Arena. Not for use with Chessbase.)
Games in cbv-Format (Chessbase)
IPS Rating | Pictures by Thilo Gubler



Day 4: Svidler-Aronian 4,5-3,5

Gerling MatchLast minute victory for Peter Svidler

Peter Svidler had to struggle hard in his match against Levon Aronian. In the seventh game, the players finally decided that a draw is also possible in Chess 960, but in the last game Svidler had no problems in the opening, won the game and the match. "I was struggling in the opening all the time, but in the last game I really had no problems", Svidler smiled. Aronian once again had problem with the time control: "Aronian played better, I played faster. When playing under time pressure, I think I handled the positions better. The last four games were better than the first games, however we made a lot of blunders in this match", was Svidlers resumé after the match. Aronian found the positions very odd. "Well, it is Chess960, but sometimes the positions are really strange. I would suggest that we play four different starting positions, instead of eight. Maybe that will improve the quality even further", Aronian summarised.


Day 3: Again - no draws 3-3

Black is OK

The Gerling Chess960-world championship match is going to be decided on the last day. Black was ok on the thiord day. After four victories with the white pieces, the spectators in the Rheingoldhalle saw two wins for black on the third day. In the fifth game Aronian could equalise easily but teh Armenian made a few inaccurate moves:" I made a few more mistakes in time trouble, but Peter blundered and I was lucky to win this game". In the sixth game, Svidlers bishop pair controlled the board and his opponent had no chance to in this game. On Sunday,the final games will be played, maybe we will even get a tie-break in this match!

Hans-Walter Schmitt has talked with many grandmasters during the Chess Classic:" They all like the idea of Chess960. In the next eight months, a database will be created with a Dutch and German software company. However, not an opening database, but I want a program that is able to read and store Chess960 games. It is still not possible with the ChessBase software, and therefore we are going to offer a new solution."


Day 2: Another two victorys, but 2-2

The castling problem

This position caused quite a stir in the fourth game of the Gerling Match between Levon Aronian and Peter Svidler.

Levon Aronian took his rook on a8, jumped over the King and put it on d8. However, he forgot to take his King which had to be placed on c8 to fulfill all the requirements for a-side castling in Chess960. If he would have done that, the game would be over: Qa8 check and mate! Peter Svidler stopped the clock and arbiter Sven Noppes came to see what was going on. Castling was possible, the mistake Aronian made was that he took his rook first, so he had to castle a-side. Peter Svidler showed that he is a gentleman on the board and allowed Aronian to correct his move. The Armenian had to play Ra7 and kept the better position. However, after this faux-pas Aronian completely lost control and finally lost the game. Was this just a mistake by the young Armenian, or did he try to win with a dirty trick? Aronian joked during the press conference : “Off course I wanted to cheat, just like in his game against The Baron in the computer match.” Peter Svidler said: I do not have a problem with Aronians mistake, and when you have only 40 seconds on the clock, like in this case, it is possible that you mix up the castling rules”. Not everybody was happy with the behaviour of the players. GM Eric Lobron opinion was that Aronian should have castled, even if he would have been mated. Anyway, Caissa decided to give the point to the Russian to equalise the match 2-2.


Day 1: No draws

Fighting chess on day 1

WNCA champion Peter Svidler could win the first game against Levon Aronian with the white pieces. The Armenian GM could not defend a hopeless endgame with a pawn down. He also had severe problems with his clock and had to resign. In the press conference Svidler thought that Aronian was a bit too “overcreative” in the opening which was not a success for the Armenian star.

Levon Aronian immediately bounced back in the second game to equalise the score: 1-1. After the game the players discussed about the castling possibilities in this game. Svidler said he was just “stupid”, not to have castled. In the middlegame Aronian outplayed the defending WNCA champion. A very good game by the young Armenian, which shows that is ready for the world title!


Peter Svidler
Chess960 World Champion
GM, Russia, IPS 2755
Levon Aronian
Winner of the 2nd Chess960 Open
GM, Germany, IPS 2690

8 Games Chess960:
25 Min./Game + 10 Sec./Move

Thursday, 8/5. Round 1+2
Friday, 8/6. Round 3+4
Saturday, 8/7. Round 5+6
Sunday, 8/8. Round 7+8
Rounds starts at: 6.30h und 8.00h p.m.

Starting positions will be known only about five minutes prior to the start of the games.


Individual-Player-Strength (IPS)
IPS-World Ranking

Rules of chess 960

Eric van Reem: "The birth of Fischer Random Chess "