June 27, 2012 15:58

Dubov dominates Russian Ch Higher League, shares win with Andreikin & Vitiugov

Dubov dominates Russian Championship Higher League, shares win with Andreikin &

Dmitry Andreikin, Daniil Dubov and Nikita Vitiugov finished shared first at the Russian Championship Higher League, the tournament that always provides qualification spots for the Russian Championship Superfinal. Dubov was the surprise of the tournament – rated 2569, the 16-year-old grandmaster was leading for most of the time, but he eventually had to share the first prize due to a last-round loss to Evgeny Alekseev. 

Danill Dubov wins the Russian Championship Higher League together with Dmiitry Andreikin and Nikita Vitiugov | Photo by Dmitry Kryakvin courtesy of the Russian Chess Federation

Event Russian Championship Higher League | PGN via TWIC
Dates June 15-28, 2012
Location Tyunmen, Russia
System 11-round Swiss
Players Top players included Dmitry Jakovenko, Ian Nepomniachtchi, Ernesto Inarkiev, Nikita Vitiugov, Dmitry Andreikin, Vadim Zvjaginsev, Boris Grachev, Evgeny Alekseev, Maxim Matlakov and Denis Khismatullin
Rate of play 90 minutes for the first 40 moves followed by 30 minutes to finish the game with an increment of 30 seconds per move starting from move one
Extra No draw offers before move 40 were allowed

This year's Russian Championship Higher League took place in Tyunmen, about two thousand km east of Moscow. Tyunmen is the oldest Russian settlement in Siberia, and nowadays the largest city and the administrative center of Tyumen Oblast – a vast oil-rich region stretching from the Kazakh border to the Arctic Ocean.

Night view of central Tyunmen | Photo igor Pivovarov, Wikipedia

The tournament was a 11-round Swiss, held between 15 and 28 June with one rest day on the 22nd. Although it was "only" a qualifier for the actual Russian Championship (called Superfinal), the field was very strong, with e.g. Dmitry Jakovenko (2736), Ian Nepomniachtchi (2716), Ernesto Inarkiev (2707), Nikita Vitiugov (2703) and Dmitry Andreikin (2700) topping the field.

However, for ten of the eleven rounds, the tournament was dominated by another player: 16-year-old grandmaster Daniil Dubov (2569). The Moscovite grabbed the lead in the third round as the only player with a 100% score. After two draws, he was joined by Dmitry Frolyanov, but Dubov won their mutual game with Black in round 6.

Dubov kept his half-point lead till the 11th round, when he was on 7.5/10, followed by Dmitry Andreikin and Nikita Vitiugov with 7/11. That's where the fairy-tale ended, because in the last round Dubov suffered his first and only loss, with Black against Evgey Alekseev. Still, it was a fantastic performance for Russia's youngest grandmaster, who is trained by the well-known coach and commentator GM Sergey Shipov. We asked him about Dubov's talent.

We started working exactly two years ago. He is a very solid player; he prefers two draws over one win and one loss. Now I try to add some aggressivity to his style, and he's started to sacrifice every now and then. We choose sharp and risky opening lines. Besides, he has a nervous system of stone! He just doesn't break after losing.

Well, this time the loss only came in the last round, and so Dubov had to share first place with Nikita Vitiugov and Dmitry Andreikin. Together with Sanan Sjugirov and Vladimir Potkin they qualified for the Russian Championship Superfinal, which is scheduled for August 2nd-13th. 

Dubov's games

PGN file

Russian Championship Higher League 2012 | Final standings (top 20)

Place Name Title Fed Rating Points Perf
1. Vitiugov, Nikita GM RUS 2703 7,5 2712
2. Andreikin, Dmitry GM RUS 2700 7,5 2743
3. Dubov, Daniil GM RUS 2569 7,5 2727
4. Sjugirov, Sanan GM RUS 2625 7 2689
5. Potkin, Vladimir GM RUS 2642 7 2666
6. Alekseev, Evgeny GM RUS 2677 7 2641
7. Demchenko, Anton IM RUS 2575 7 2663
8. Prizant, Jaroslav IM RUS 2524 6,5 2699
9. Bocharov, Dmitry GM RUS 2600 6,5 2691
10. Panarin, Mikhail GM RUS 2538 6,5 2657
11. Grachev, Boris GM RUS 2680 6,5 2680
12. Khairullin, Ildar GM RUS 2631 6,5 2631
13. Timofeev, Artyom GM RUS 2641 6,5 2631
14. Matlakov, Maxim GM RUS 2668 6,5 2615
15. Nepomniachtchi, Ian GM RUS 2716 6 2632
16. Zvjaginsev, Vadim GM RUS 2683 6 2604
17. Kurnosov, Igor GM RUS 2663 6 2590
18. Khalifman, Alexander GM RUS 2651 6 2574
19. Shimanov, Aleksandr GM RUS 2600 6 2607
20. Lintchevski, Daniil GM RUS 2563 6 2615


Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers


Tarjei's picture

"Together with Alexander Potkin"

I am guessing it should be "Vladimir Potkin" there.

Peter Doggers's picture

Indeed, thx, corrected.

noyb's picture

Some nice games by Dubov. I think we'll be hearing more about him in the future!

Jeff Hall's picture

Dubov's demolition of Dubov was *awesome*.

Jeff Hall's picture

demolition of *Potkin*

Anonymous's picture

nice !

S3's picture

Just look at the list of non qualifiers. It's incredibly hard to get ahead in Russian chess. Jakovenko isn't even in the top 20 and former Russian champion Nepomniachi didn't qualify. Almost too many talents for their own good.
Also unfortunate that there wasn't English language coverage during the event.

S3's picture

Wow. http://chess-news.ru/en/node/8208

Last minute supertournament announced with Ivanchuk, Kamsky, Jobava, Sasikiran, Le Quang Liem, Anna Muzychuk and Sutovsky. Interesting field and it will be played at the same time as Dortmund!

Remco Gerlich's picture

Interesting that a Dutch tournament has a field with all players coming from outside the EU.

sab's picture

"The tournament won't be counted by FIDE."
Does that mean it will be unrated?

Thomas's picture

I guess not: as mentioned at Whychess, the time control doesn't fit FIDE standards - 2.5 hours for 40 moves and then possible adjournments(!). I am old enough to remember that it was possible to interrupt a game and continue on another day.

BTW @Remco Gerlich: I see your point but actually Slovenia is a European Union country.

brabo's picture

I find it strange that Whychess claims that the tournament won't be rated. See http://www.fide.com/component/handbook/?id=125&view=article which I interpret that it is still allowed.
I also wrote some time ago on my blog an article about adjournements: http://schaken-brabo.blogspot.fr/2012/05/afbreken.html (Dutch language).
It can be that the organisers themselves choice not to give the results for rating, however the dutch official announcement doesn't give any details about that unless I miss something obvious.
Now I've the impression that the statement on Whychess is more Colin Mc Gourties subjective view (the author of the article) and doesn't correspond with the reality.

mishanp's picture

You're right actually - I'm not sure if the use of adjournments means the tournament can't be rated. I just assumed that was the reason. Just now I tried to work out some more from a very long and rambling Russian interview with Emil Sutovsky at Chess-News but I didn't have the patience (it hasn't been transcribed yet)... at one point he was talking about the event not being rated and how that would allow the players to be creative. It seemed as though he was about to go on to say that if it worked it might be rated in future... but then he digressed and I gave up! Just as a mildly curious detail Sutovsky said they invited Luke McShane but he couldn't get off work. McShane was curious whether they'd be locked up so they couldn't use computers on the adjourned positions :)

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