Archive for April, 2018

Paikidze Wins U.S. Women’s Championship In Armageddon

Monday, April 30th, 2018

IM Nazi Paikidze came from behind in regulation to catch WIM Annie Wang. Then today, she caught her again in the playoff.
After dropping game one of the rapid playoff (G/25, Delay 5), the 2018 U.S. Women’s Championship became leve…

Source: Chess.com – Play. Learn. Share.

Ethereal wins TCEC Division 4

Monday, April 30th, 2018

ethereal chessEthereal, the chess engine by Andrew Grant, won Division 4 of the Top Chess Engine Championship. It collected 23,5/28 points without conceding a single game and showing impressive improvement compared to Season 11. First officially released in June 2016, Ethereal is now aiming at higher divisions and competitive play up to the level of Division 2.

Here is an interview with the winner, the American computer scientist from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Andrew Grant.

Congratulations, Andrew, on winning the TCEC Division 4, quite an impressive performance! Are you happy with Ethereal and how it played?

Thank you! It feels good to promote from the fourth division as the front-runner, where as last season Ethereal just barely made it through. I’m quite happy with the results of TCEC Division 4, yet Division 3 is much more competitive. As for play style, I’m not much of a judge. The days of me understanding Ethereal’s moves are long gone, but I think that goes for most people.

This is your second season in TCEC. Can you compare / contrast the two seasons?

The first season was pretty wild. I was sent an email with an invitation, if I could implement SMP support to Ethereal in the next few weeks, since TCEC has such powerful hardware. It took a lot of work — and there were plenty of problems uncovered last season — but it all worked out. In season 11 I was just happy to be there. In season 12 I’m looking for more. My goal was for Ethereal to be competitive in Division 2, a difficult task. We will have to wait and see.

Do you like the divisions system of TCEC? Does it help engines realistically evaluate current strength of the field?

Absolutely. The division system opens up the competition to so many more developers. Many of the engines in the lower divisions, mine included, play a less rigorous game of chess than say, Stockfish. I think that makes the games more interesting at times. So all around, the division system helps developers and I think the spectators too.

What was the best game of Ethereal in Div 4?

I really enjoyed Scorpio vs Ethereal, round 25. For the first 13 moves Ethereal was reporting 0.00 evals, or just slightly above. Scorpio was slightly more optimistic. But on the 13 move Ethereal thought for over 10 minutes, 33% of the total time for the engine. The chat was pretty sure that Ethereal had crashed. After that 10 minute think Ethereal closed out the game very quickly. 4 moves later Ethereal was evaluating at +2 pawns in her favor, with Scorpio still on 0.00. By the 26th move Ethereal was evaluating at +8 pawns, and the game was adjudicated shortly after.

Replay Scorpio – Ethereal (Sicilian: Taimanov, Four Knights, 6.a3) 0-1

Ethereal also played against Leela Chess Zero – the open source Alpha Zero project. Can you share your thoughts on that? What do you expect from Leela Chess Zero in the future?

I’m going to don my tinfoil hat for a moment here. I was very unhappy with the AlphaZero papers. I now see their project as a proof of concept, as opposed to the conclusion that many drew of “Stockfish has been bested”. So I appreciate the work that the guys on the Leela Chess Zero team are doing. LC0 has already shown some impressive strength. Personally I don’t think we will ever see Leela as strong as even some of the older versions of Stockfish, but I’m not expert on the topic. Plus, If I’m wrong, people are going to quote me on this!

Ethereal is now in Division 3. What are your expectations?

TCEC Division 3 is close. As of now the 2nd through 5th place engines are separated by only a half point, with 10 games each to go. So really anything can happen. ChessBrainVB came in as a big surprise. I’ve been comparing Ethereal to the engines in the division through the big rating lists. My guess was that Xiphos and Ethereal fight for first and second, while Pedone and ChessbrainVB try to upset 2nd place.

You continue to develop the project. What does the future hold for Ethereal?

The future … the future contains a lot of simplifications. I think Ethereal was able to progress so quickly because the source was simple and clean. But as elo gains become harder to find, I’m doing things I’m not too fond of, so long as they win elo. I’ve just released Ethereal9.65, the first release to contain support for Syzygy TBs. So as of now, there are no grand plans to add some feature. Just code cleaning, and finding elo wherever I can.

You followed last seasons Superfinal. What do you expect from this season’s TCEC Premier division and Superfinal?

Last season’s Superfinal sure was a surprise. I think Houdini looked better in season 10 than he actually was. Stockfish’s inability to convert wins against weaker opponents allowed Komodo into the Superfinal, when I believe Stockfish was still the stronger opponent. I hope that Robert Houdart has some tricks up his sleeve for this season. I think it is good to have competition near the top.

Ethereal Eating Fruit

Chessdom

The World Schools Individual Chess Championships 2018

Monday, April 30th, 2018

FIDE World School Chess Championships 2018The World Schools Individual Chess Championships 2018 was held from 20th to 29th April 2018 in Durres, on the Adriatic coast of Albania, under the auspices of the World Chess Federation (FIDE) and the Albanian Chess Federation.
The tournament is divided into six age categories, and is open for winners of individual school competitions aged from 7 to 17.

Medal winners in all age groups:

Girls Under 7: 1. Subramanian Lakshana (India) 8 2. WCM Raian Zhumagali (Kazakhstan) 8 3. Naranbold Sodgerelt (Mongolia) 6.5
Open Under 7: 1. Dinmukhammed Tulendinov(Kazakhstan) 7,5 2. Maxim Tsoy (Kazakhstan) 7 3. Danail Popzafirov (Bulgaria) 7
Girls Under 9: 1. Abbie Wu (USA} 7,5 2. WCM Rouda Essa Alserkal (UAE) 7,5 3. WCM Yining Chen (China) 7
Open Under 9: 1. CM Savva Vetokhin (Russia) 7,5 2. Steve Wongso (USA) 7 3. CM Sauat Nurgaliyev (Kazakhstan) 7
Girls Under 11 1. Alua Nurmanova (Kazakhstan) 7 2. Kaldarova Ayaulym (Kazakhstan) 6,5 3. WCM Lucia Kapicakova (Slovakia) 6,5
Open Under 11 1. CM Aldiyar Ansat (Kazakhstan) 7,5 2. CM Ochirbat Lkhagvajamts (Mongolia) 7 3. CM Taha Ozkan (Turkey) 6,5
Girls Under 13 1. AIM Trisha Kanyamarala (Ireland) 7 2. WCM Aydin Gulenay (Turkey) 7 3. WCM Munkhzul Davaakhuu (Mongolia) 6,5
Open Under 13: 1. Khazar Babazada (Azerbajdjan) 7 2. CM Momchil Petkov (Bulgaria) 7 3. FM Maksim Zhukov (Russia) 6,5
Girls Under 15 1. WFM Nazerke Nurgali (Kazakhstan) 8 2. FM Liwia Jarocka (Poland) 6,5 3. WFM Lehaci Miruna-Daria (Roumania) 6,5
Open Under 15 1. Vugar Manafov (Azerbajdjan) 6,5 2. CM Thilakarathne G M H (SRI) 6,5 3. Abdilkhair Abilmansur (Kazakhstan) 6,5
Girls Under 17 1. WFM Viktoria Radeva (Bulgaria) 8.5 2. Kostecka Marika (Poland) 8 3. Heydarova Aytaj (Azerbajdjan) 5.5
Open Under 17 1. FM Murad Ibrahimli (Azerbajdjan) 7,5 2. FM Vladislav Sipetin (Russia) 7 3. Akdogan Alperen (Turkey) 6

Chessdom

FIDE: ‘UBS Closing FIDE Bank Account Today’

Monday, April 30th, 2018

According to FIDE officials, UBS Bank in Switzerland is closing the account of the World Chess Federation today. FIDE still hasn’t found a new bank.
Today, UBS Bank’s deadline for FIDE to find a new financial partner expires. As was announc…

Source: Chess.com – Play. Learn. Share.

‘UBS Closing FIDE Bank Account Today’

Monday, April 30th, 2018

According to FIDE officials, UBS Bank in Switzerland is closing the account of the World Chess Federation today. FIDE still hasn’t found a new bank.
Today, UBS Bank’s deadline for FIDE to find a new financial partner expires. As was announc…

Source: Chess.com – Play. Learn. Share.

Mo Zhai wins Chinese Women’s Championship 2018

Monday, April 30th, 2018

Mo Zhai Chinese Women Champion 2018The 2018 Chinese Women’s Championship was a 12-player round-robin which took place from 18-29 April in Xinghua.
Before the last round WGM Qian Huang was leading with half point. But she drew against Zhu Jiner, allowing WGM Mo Zhai to catch her with a win and eventually with better tie-break with both on 8,5 points Mo Znai has won the title.
WGM Jue Wang is third with 7 points out of 11.

replay the games here

final standings Chinese Women’s Championship 2018

1 Zhai Mo 8,5
2 Huang Qian 8,5
3 Wang Jue 7
4 Ni Shiqun 6
5 Ning Kaiyu 6
6 Zhu Jiner 6
7 Gu Tianlu 5,5
8 Wang Yu A. 5
9 Guo Qi 4,5
10 Ren Xiaoyi 3,5
11 Liu Manli 3
12 Li Xueyi 2,5

Chessdom

May 2018 FIDE Rating List

Monday, April 30th, 2018

official logo

FIDE publishes May 2018 FIDE Rating List. The list of top players is published at Top lists page of FIDE ratings website. All players can check new ratings at the main page of FIDE ratings website.

Source: World Chess Federation – FIDE

Yang Wen wins Chinese Championship 2018

Monday, April 30th, 2018

Yang Wen wins Chinese Championship 201810th China Xinghua National Chess Championship took place from 18-29 April at the Tianbao Garden Hotel in Xinghua, Jiangsu.
In the final round of the tournament, GM Wen Yang and GM Bai Jinshi, the leading players with the same points, respectively played and Xu Xiangyu and Fang Yuxiang.
They both drew their games. Wen won the title with better tie-break with 7,5 points out of 11 and Jinshi Bai is second.
IM Yan Liu took the bronze with 7 points.

replay the games here

final standings Chinese Championship 2018

1 Wen Yang 7,5
2 Bai Jinshi 7,5
3 Liu Yan 7
4 Lu Shanglei 6,5
5 Zhou Jianchao 6,5
6 Xu Xiangyu 6,5
7 Xu Yi 6,5
8 Fang Yuxiang 4,5
9 Zeng Chongsheng 4,5
10 Xu Jun 4
11 Liu Guanchu 3
12 Wang Chen 2

Chessdom

Cancellation of Ratings for Bulgarian Players delayed until 31st May, 2018

Monday, April 30th, 2018

official logo

On 28th April, 2018 FIDE has received a letter from the Bulgarian Federation of Chess 1928 providing some of the information requested. FIDE Deputy President, Mr. Georgios Makropoulos has therefore agreed to delay the cancellation of ratings of Bulgarian FIDE players from 30th April, 2018 until 31st May, 2018 to enable the Bulgarians to provide the missing information.

Source: World Chess Federation – FIDE

2018 U.S. Championships Round 11 Recap

Monday, April 30th, 2018

Shankland win U.S. ChampionshipТhe final round of the 2018 U.S. Chess Championships has been as explosive and exciting as one could have imagined. There were four players battling for glory going into today’s games: Sam Shankland, Fabiano Caruana, Annie Wang, and Nazi Paikidze. The outcome couldn’t be more dramatic!

U.S. Championship – The Shankland / Caruana affair

Shankland went into today’s round as the leader, half a point ahead of Caruana. Most scenarios were surely favoring the Californian, but he could not fall asleep at the wheel. Caruana played white against Onischuk, and it was clear that the new challenger would do everything in his power to break through the experienced Grandmaster and try to catch up with the leader.
Caruana had no other option, he had to go for broke. Being in Shankland’s shoes, the strategy was much more difficult. He was playing the white pieces against the young super talent Awonder Liang, who has had a solid event up to this point. Shankland’s options were: 1. Play it safe, hope that Caruana doesn’t win or 2. Play for a victory, take risks, if a win comes your way you’re the new U.S. Champion.
For obvious reasons the choice was not easy. Shankland chose a combination of the two, he played a rather strategic and simplified line of the exchange Caro-Kann. Luckily for him, it was the young and effervescent Awonder that made his decision for him by playing the ultra-sharp 7…e5!? for which Shankland was thoroughly prepared! Shankland blasted off a precise series of moves that obviously placed Liang under tremendous pressure.
On the other side of the fence, Caruana was playing a masterpiece of his own. Outplaying Onischuk in a Ruy Lopez, which was the perfect opening for the tournament position he was in. The young challenger was playing precise, poised chess, and it looked clear that Onischuk would have a very rough day at the office. The tournament was in the air, nobody knew what would happen next. Would Caruana manage to win; would Shankland win his game as well?
Shankland understood that the situation had changed, and he now needed to win in order to secure the title. As he continued pounding on his opponent’s king with all his might, Liang remained restricted and had to watch his position crumble.
Without any counter play, Liang slowly but surely had to accept the hard truth: defeat was unavoidable. Despite Fabiano’s quick victory, Shankland kept his composure and converted his own advantage with confidence.

U.S. Women’s Championship – Wang breaks at the buzzer.

The show goes on in the ladies’ division, as the unexpected happened!

Annie Wang started off blazing hot, and her position against Foisor looked completely dominant. On the other side, Paikidze was playing a sharp but rather messy game against the experienced Goletiani.
At this juncture in the round things were looking great for Wang, who looked primed to win her first U.S. Women’s Championship title and become one of the youngest victors this tournament has seen.
Then, the inexplicable happened. Wang began to play disastrous moves, and quickly found herself in a sea of trouble when Foisor’s rooks found their preferred avenue on the “G” file. Wang collapsed quickly and allowed her opponent to exchange her two rooks for the queen, as well as preserve a decisive attack on her now exposed king. Foisor closed the show with confidence, as she never allowed Wang to come back into the game.
A painful loss for Annie Wang, аs soon as the game finished, Paikidze offered a timely draw and Goletiani accepted. which means that the Womens Championship will be decided in the playoffs tomorrow!
Wang-Paikidze is the final in U.S. Women Championship

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