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Round 6: Ju Wenjun and Hou Yifan improved their lead

In the sixth round of the Women Grand Prix in Sharjah both Ju Wenjun and Hou Yifan won their games against Alina L’Ami and Anna Ushenina respectivly. It was a lucky day for the Chinese players as the third participant from China Zhao Xue also won today. She defeated Humpy Koneru, who suffered the third loss in the tournament and has very few chances to catch Hou Yifan. After sixth rounds World Champion has increased the distance to 3 points.

After painful loss at the fifth round, Tatiana Kosintseva managed to win against Harika Dronavalli. The games Danielian-Tuvshintugs and Zhu-Muminova finished in a draw. 

SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo.
12 GM Zhao Xue 2508 1 – 0 GM Koneru Humpy 2598 9
10 GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2494 1 – 0 GM Harika Dronavalli 2521 8
11 GM Ushenina Anna 2487 0 – 1 GM Hou Yifan 2661 7
1 GM Zhu Chen 2461 ? – ? WGM Muminova Nafisa 2315 6
2 WGM Ju Wenjun 2559 1 – 0 WGM L’ami Alina 2446 5
3 GM Danielian Elina 2490 ? – ? WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 2346 4

RESULTS after Round 6

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Round 5: two Chinese Hou Yifan and Ju Wenjun at the top

There were two decisive games and four draws in the fifth round of the FIDE Women’s Grand Prix in Sharjah. The sole leader after four rounds, Ju Wenjun, was the first one to finish her game. Her opponent Batchimeg Tuvshintugs decided not to check her luck today and the players repeated the moves in the middle game. Elina Danielian relatively quickly outplayed Zhao Xue, while World Champion Hou Yifan defeated Tatiana Kosintseva after long and complex fight. Indian derby between Humpy Koneru and Harika Dronavalli as well as the game Ushenina-Muminova finished in a draw. Alina L’Ami and Zhu Chen split a point and thus both players have stopped the unfortunate series of losses.

After 5 rounds Chinese Ju Wenjun and Hou Yifan are leading with 4 points. Three players Batchimeg Tuvshintugs. Anna Ushenina and Harika Dronavalli share the third place with 3, 5 points out of 5.

The distance between two players, who fight for the victory in Grand Prix Series Hou Yifan and Humpy Koneru, increased to two points. 

SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo.
3 GM Danielian Elina 2490 1 – 0 GM Zhao Xue 2508 12
4 WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 2346 ? – ? WGM Ju Wenjun 2559 2
5 WGM L’ami Alina 2446 ? – ? GM Zhu Chen 2461 1
6 WGM Muminova Nafisa 2315 ? – ? GM Ushenina Anna 2487 11
7 GM Hou Yifan 2661 1 – 0 GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2494 10
8 GM Harika Dronavalli 2521 ? – ? GM Koneru Humpy 2598 9

RESULTS after Round 5

Read full report at the official website

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Round 4: Ju Wenjun takes lead

In a dramatic fourth round Ju Wenjun beat Elina Danielian to grab solo lead with 3? points in the FIDE Women’s Grand Prix in Sharjah. In the battle of the two top seeds, Hou Yifan, playing black, defeated Humpy Koneru, who unexpectedly lost the drawish endgame. Tatiana Kosintseva had winning position against Nafisa Muminova but missed advantage in the time trouble. The game finished in a draw same as another encounter between Harika Dronavalli and Zhao Xue. Another drama happened in the game Zhu Chen – Batchimeg Tuvshintugs. Qatari player had better position during the whole game but didn’t play well in the rook endgame and even lost the game at the end. Alina L’Ami suffered another loss, this time against Anna Ushenina. Women’s World Champion Hou Yifan of China, Harika Dronavalli of India, former women’s world champion Anna Ushenina of Ukraine and WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs of Mongolia follow the leader with 3 points each.

Ju Wenjun 1-0 Elina Danielian

Humpy Koneru 0-1 Hou Yifan

Anna Ushenina 1-0 Alina L’Ami

Zhu Chen 0-1 Batchimeg Tuvshintugs

Zhao Xue 1/2-1/2 Harika Dronavalli

Tatiana Kosintseva 1/2-1/2 Nafisa Muminova

RESULTS after Round 4

Read full report at the official website

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Round 3: Harika Dronavalli and Ju Wenjun are leading

Ju Wenjun defeated her compatriot Zhao Xue today to catch up Harika Dronavalli, who made a draw against World Champion Hou Yifan. Humpy Koneru and Nafisa Muminova played a dramatic game, which finished in a draw but not before both players missed good chances to win. Batchimeg Tuvshintugs and Anna Ushenina played a relatively quiet game and split a point just before the first time control. Alina L’Ami and Zhu Chen lost the third game in a row against Tatiana Kosintseva and Elina Danielian respectively.

Ju Wenjun 1-0 Zhao Xue

Danielian, Elina 1-0 Zhu Chen

Tuvshintugs, Batchimeg ?-? Ushenina, Anna

l’Ami, Alina 0-1 Kosintseva, Tatiana

Muminova, Nafisa ?-? Koneru Humpy

Hou Yifan ?-? Dronavalli Harika

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Round 2: Harika Dronavalli takes early lead

Harika Dronavalli from India defeated Nafisa Muminova from Uzbekistan to become the sole leader after two rounds of the FIDE Women’s Grand Prix in Sharjah. Her compatriot Humpy Koneru managed to recover after unfortunate start and confidently won against Alina L’Ami. There were two more decisive games as Anna Ushenina and Ju Wenjun outplayed Elina Danielian and Zhu Chen respectively. Hou Yifan split a point with Zhao Xue and one more game between Batchimeg Tuvshintugs and Tatiana Kosintseva also finished in a draw. Five players including Hou Yifan, Zhao Xue, Batchimeg Tuvshintugs, Anna Ushenina and Ju Wenjun are half a point behind the leader.

Zhao Xue 1/2 – 1/2 Hou Yifan

The Chinese derby didn’t last for too long today and after one hour of play the peace has been signed. The theoretical line led to a known repetition and both players seemed satisfied with the final result. Speaking about interest of Chinese media towards Women Grand Prix event, Hou Yifan pointed out that after such a great success of Chinese Team at the Olympiad the attention of media turned to chess once again and Grand Prix event will be followed closely in China. At the same time both players of Chinese Women’s Team seemed unsatisfied with their own result in Tromso. “We have good chances to win this Olympiad as well as a previous one but for some reason we are always second”, said Zhao Xue.

Humpy Koneru 1-0 Alina L’Ami

It ‘s not an easy task to play against two best Indian women players in two days and Alina L’Ami suffered another loss today. There was an opportunity for Romanian player to exchange her knight for White’s light-square bishop but all the same Black got solid position after the opening. The critical moment of this game was perhaps at move 26 when Black didn’t play 26…Ne2 allowing her opponent to win an important pawn on the King’s side. It was just a question of technique from Humpy Koneru and she didn’t give any chance to her opponent.

Ushenina Anna 1-0 Elina Danielian

Anna Ushenina and Elina Danielian could have finished the game around 30th move but both players missed 30.g4 in the time trouble.

However the position was still in White’s favor but Danielian found the right moment to complicate the position after a piece sacrifice. Black managed to get 3 pawns for one piece, and in fact at one moment Black could draw the game with a nice move but failed to find the precise way.

Tatiana Kosintseva 1/2-1/2 Batchimeg Tuvshintugs

Once again Tatiana tried her luck in Ruy Lopez against Batchimeg but this time she chose 5.Bc6 comapere to 5.c3 as she played in the previous stage of Grand Prix In Khanty-Manskiysk. Same as before Russian player put a lot of pressure on her opponent but once again Batchimeg showed good defensive skills and managed to hold the position.

In order to complicate things White sacrificed a pawn on a5 even it was not so clear if she has enough compensation. Nevertheless Black found another way to keep the balance and after 45 moves the game finished in a draw.

Zhu Chen 0-1 Ju Wenjun

It was a very interesting and complex game with many different opportunities for both sides. Ju Wenjun played aggressively on the King’s side but her opponent kept calm till some moment and was holding the pressure. The game became extremely sharp after 23…f5, and every move was crucial. One of the critical moments happened on move 24 when Zhu Chen decided to change her dark square bishop for the knight. Ju Wenjun continued to fight for initiative and in the time trouble it seemed more difficult for White to find the exact moves.

Harika Dronavalli 1-0 Nafisa Muminova

Harika tried to avoid theoretical lines today and didn’t get anything out of the opening. As she pointed out at the press conference, she was not happy with her play at the early stage of the game and after 17…f5 and 18…c5 she estimated her position as slightly worse. It’s hard to say how Black could have improved her play but as in the previous game Harika showed better understanding of the position. She competently changed few pieces and started to play against black weaknesses. When Nafisa moved her queen on the Queen’s side Harika used a chance to create crashing attack on the weak king of her opponent. 

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Cross table after Round 2


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Round 1

The sixth stage of FIDE Women Grand Prix in Sharjah started on 25th of August with four decisive games and two draws.

Most of the players playing the black pieces were higher rated than their opponents, and three out of four decisive games finished in Black’s favor. Humpy Koneru, one of the challengers for the victory in Grand Prix series, blundered material and lost her first game against Batchimeg Tuvshintugs, while Hou Yifan confidently outplayed Nafisa Muminova. Harika Dronavalli and Zhao Xue managed to win after long resistance from their opponents Alina L’Ami and Zhu Chen respectively. Elina Danielian and Anna Ushenina had good chances to finish their games with victories but their opponents Tatiana Kosintseva and Ju Wenjun managed to avoid serious troubles and both games ended in draws.

Muminova, Nafisa 0-1 Hou Yifan

Hou Yifan obtained quite comfortable position due to some inaccuracies made by her opponent and was slowly improving her position looking for the right moment to break through on the King’s side. White didn’t find real chances to find any counter play and after 32…g5 Muminova’s position became hopeless.

Tuvshintugs, Batchimeg 1-0 Koneru Humpy

Mongolian player decided to give up the bishop for the knight and ended up in the worse position. Humpy Koneru had many different options to increase her advantage but preferred to enter the position with two rooks for a queen with better chances for Black. According to Koneru she could have slowly increased the position of her pieces but instead she lost her track and blundered the material. Just one move earlier Black could have forced a draw by three times repetition.

Zhu Chen 0-1 Zhao Xue

Zhao Xue managed to equalize with black and grabbed a pawn on a2 due to her opponent’s mistake. Nevertheless, White got a positional compensation by activating her pieces. Black has to give a pawn back and the position was balanced but luckily for Zhao Xue, Zhu Chen made inaccurate moves 31.b4 and 32.e4. Chinese player confidently converted her advantage into full point.

Ju Wenjun ?-? Ushenina, Anna

The game between Ju Wenjun and Anna Ushenina ended in a draw, but not before Ukrainian player had had a promising position. Ju Wenjun played inaccurately in the opening and ended up in the position with an isolated pawn. Anna Ushenina used a typical plan for this kind of positions and it was White’s turn to look for equality. At the same time former world champion was not so optimistic about her chances. “White didn’t do anything wrong to be punished”, said Anna during the press conference after the game but her opponent seemed to be happy with a draw. After 30 moves the game was over after three times repetition.

Danielian, Elina ?-? Kosintseva, Tatiana

Tatiana Kosintseva didn’t expect the line with 7.c5 in Queens Gambit and went for dubious continuation with 7…Ne4. White managed to gain an advantage out of the opening and Tatiana was suffering trying to equalize the position during the whole game. In the endgame Elina Danielian managed to win a pawn but didn’t succeed to convert her advantage in the rook endgame.

l’Ami, Alina 0-1 Dronavalli Harika

It became clear during the press conference that Harika Dronavalli had better knowledge of the position which appeared after the opening. Despite the fact that White had pair of bishops, it was difficult to find the way to make use of them. Harika precisely played against the weakness of the White’s position – hanging pawns, and managed to win one of them. Black converted her advantage in the rook endgame.

And so after the first round the tournament has four leaders. Tuesday, August 26th at 15:00 local time the second round will be played:

Zhao Xue

2508

Hou Yifan

2661

Dronavalli Harika

2521

Muminova, Nafisa

2315

Koneru Humpy

2598

l’Ami, Alina

2446

Kosintseva, Tatiana

2494

Tuvshintugs, Batchimeg

2346

Ushenina, Anna

2487

Danielian, Elina

2490

Zhu Chen

2461

Ju Wenjun

2559

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The final stage of FIDE Women’s Grand Prix started in Sharjah

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The sixth stage of the women’s FIDE Grand Prix officially opened today in Sharjah Cultural and Chess Club. 12 chess players representing 9 countries of the world will participate in the competition that will take place until the 7th of September 2014. In his speech FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov expressed his gratitude to the organizers and wished all players to show their best in the tournament.

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“I am happy to be here in Sharjah in this magnificent Chess Club, the largest in the world chess building, the opening of which in 2013 I was fortunate to attend. I would like to take this occasion to thank one more time His Highness Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Quassimi, the ruler of Sharjah, for his decisive contribution into this outstanding architectural and cultural project that resulted in appearance of the top level playing venue together with the Regional FIDE office, which has turned Sharjah into the major chess destinations all over the world. Now Sharjah deservedly hosts the final leg of the Women’s Grand Prix Series, taking the baton from Georgian Lopota alone with other hosting cities of this significant women’s chess event, including here Khanty-Mansiysk in Russia, Tashkent in Uzbekistan, Dilijan in Armenia and Geneva in Switzerland. Women’s Grand Prix Series give strong impulse to development of women’s chess and let all of us enjoy tough and nonpresumable chess fights.”

FIDE President promised to announce the hosting city of the Women’s World Chess Championship at the closing ceremony of the Grand Prix in Sharjah on 6th of September.

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The big and small cups from “Lobortas Classic Jewelry House” were presented during the opening ceremony of the sixth stage of FIDE Women’s Grand Prix in Sharjah. The winner of the Women’s Grand Priz Series will be awarded with the small cup at the closing ceremony. The Classic Jewelry House Lobortas had previously created for FIDE the Large and Small Chess Cups “Caissa”. World Champion Hou Yifan was the one who got the award “Caissa” during Istanbul Chess Olympiad in 2012.

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FIDE, the World Chess Federation, and Lobortas Classic Jewelry House are to release the men’s Grand Prix Series trophy next year. Drawing of lots for the tournament was held during the opening ceremony. So, the pairs of the first round are: 

ROUND 1 Pairings

No. Rtg   Name Result   Name Rtg No.
1 2461 GM Zhu Chen vs GM Zhao Xue 2508 12
2 2559 WGM Ju Wenjun vs GM Ushenina Anna 2487 11
3 2490 GM Danielian Elina vs GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2494 10
4 2346 WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs vs GM Koneru Humpy 2598 9
5 2446 WGM L’ami Alina vs GM Harika Dronavalli 2521 8
6 2315 WGM Muminova Nafisa vs GM Hou Yifan 2661 7

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The Women Grand Prix Series consists of six tournaments that are being held over a two year period between 2013 and 2014. 18 top players participate in 4 of these 6 tournaments. The winner of the Grand Prix series will play a ten-game World Championship match with the Women’s World Champion; which will be determined during Women World Championship in the third quarter of 2015.

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Official website

Source: World Chess Federation – FIDE