Shredder wins computer chess world title, Bacrot remains undefeated in FiNet Open
18.08.2006 - What happened in Mainz on Friday? The last six, tough rounds in the FiNet Chess960 Open were played. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov won three more games, dominated the rest of the field, but then he blundered in his games against Bacrot and Grischuk. The French number one won the FiNet Open with 9,5 points out of 11 games, followed by Mamedyarov and Grishuk with 9 points. Alexandra Kosteniuk won the ladies price, she scored 7 points, Vlastimil Hort won the senior price (6,5 points), Andrej Volokitin (8,5) the junior price. The new computer Chess960 world champion is the German program Shredder, developed by Stefan Meyer-Kahlen
Livingston Chess960 world championship
Another world title for Shredder
Since 1996, Stefan Meyer-Kahlen's Shredder chess program has won ten titles as World Computer Chess Champion. This year, the 38-year old won another title, he clinched home the second Chess960 Computer World Championship, sponsored by IT rental company Livingston. He only lost one game, in the fifth round against Jonny, drew in the last round against Naum, and won all its other games. “The game against Jonny was a very bad game by Shredder, it played silly moves with the h-and a-pawns. I haven´t seen such a bad game by Shredder since at least eight years. But I am very pleased with the other games, my program played some good games in this tournament, I particularly liked the game against Pharaon. I did not have to prepare for this tournament, normally you have to prepare an openings book and between the rounds you always have to adjust the book. I played with my latest program Shredder 10, which is particularly good in dynamic positions, and that seems to be important in Chess960. This version played much better than last year. Now I will concentrate on my new product, Shredder mobile, a chess program for mobile phones. It will become available in the next two weeks.” Last years´s winner Spike played a disappointing tournament, it only landed on the 13th place! The German programs Jonny and Ikarus played a good tournament and landed on 2nd and 3rd place.
The more haste, the less speed
Shakhriyar Mamedyarov did not mind that the sixth round of the FiNet Open started at 10 AM. He easily won the first three games of the day in great style, against Mchedlishvili, Kasimdhanov and Naiditsch. Etienne Bacrot, who always has a very good start in the Open tournaments in Mainz, changed gear and played two draws in a row. After the 45-minute break however, he faced the 21-year old leader from Baku. And once again, Mamedyarov had a winning position on the board, an win would probably have decided the tournament. But an incredible blunder (allowing Mate in 2) spoilt the game...and the tournament. Poor Mamedyarov even lost another game, against Grishuk, in round 10. He resigned after only 7 moves! What went wrong? The referee told us that Mamedyarov wanted to move his bishop, but forgot that he would lose a piece on a3 without compensation. He resigned immediately. There is a saying that goes: the more haste, the less speed. It is not the first time in the Chess Classic history that a player wins his first seven or more games, but it often happens that the players can not keep the pace until the finish. However, Mamedyarov was not complaining after the games. “Listen, I am happy that I am still alive, earlier this week I had a severe car accident in Baku and I am lucky that nothing serious happened. So, why should I complain about two blunders? Occasionaly I blunder, like in the game against Bacrot, a similar thing happened to me in Reykjavik the other day, when I found a self-mate in a good position against Anand. The game against Grishuk was a different story. I wanted to play Qd1-c1, to protect my Bishop on a3, but I realised too late that there was no Queen on d1! So I had to play with the piece that was placed on d1, a Bishop, and because I would have lost a piece, I resigned. Off course, I will win the Ordix Open now!“
This unsatifactory game catapulted Grishuk in a splendid position for the “grand finale” in round eleven against the French hope Etienne Bacrot who won a fine game in the penultimate round against Evgeny Bareev. In the finale round, the Russian played with the white pieces and very soon an unclear position was reached. Good for Grishuk, who needed a win and pushed hard, not only to win the game, but also the FiNet Open and an invitation for a match next year. But Bacrot kept his cool, reached a good position and ended the game with a nice move, forcing stalemate. With 9,5 out of 11 games (three draws, no losses) he was the sole winner of the FiNet Open. Mamedyarov, who recovered and won his game in the last round against Sergey Erenburg, came in second, Grishuk landed on the third spot.
More results: ladies, senior and juniors
In the ladies competition Chess960 Alexandra Kosteniuk showed that she is a really good Chess960 player, after the match against Pähtz, she also won this competition. She will have to defend her title in a match next year against the runner-up Natalia Zhukova, who was a member of the succesfull ladies team from the Ukraine, that won the Chess Olympiad in Turin this year. We will see another Chess960 match next year between the “Altmeister” Vlastimil Hort and Lajos Portisch. They both scored 6,5 points in the senior category. The best junior this year is Andrej Volokitin, with 8,5 points, also from the Ukraine. He will play next year against Pentala Harikrishna, who scored 8,5 points as well.
Andrej Volokitin (8.5 points)
We will see most above mentioned players again in the Ordix Open. It is expected that more than 600 players will come to play the Ordix Open this year, crushing another Chess Classic record.
Eric van Reem
Published by Börries Wendling
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