Nakamura beats Tiviakov, wins Univé tournament convincingly
Hikaru Nakamura won the 16th Univé Chess Tournament in Hoogeveen convincingly on Saturday by beating Sergey Tiviakov. The American grandmaster only needed a draw to win outright, but decided to "just play chess", and then won his last white game to finish 1.5 points ahead of Tiviakov. Anish Giri and Hou Yifan drew their final game. The open section was won by Erwin l'Ami, who beat Friso Nijboer with Black in the last round, and finished with a better tie-break.
Round 6 under way
Hikaru Nakamura was enjoying himself in Hoogeveen in the past week. One example: before and after the prize giving, the American grandmaster joined a group of chess players who were playing bughouse with clocks. For many players there's a simple rule that predicts their results: you gotta enjoy it to play well.
Nakamura playing bughouse, here together with Jan Smeets
On Saturday Nakamura made clear that if the form is there, he's by far the strongest in the 2012 Hoogeveen field. He was the rating favourite, but considering his disappointing results in Eilat and London it could have been a close affair with the other players. But Giri and Tiviakov missed their chances, Hou was never a serious candidate for first place and Nakamura himself "just played chess", as he put it himself. Good chess, that is.
In the last round the American "didn't really look at the tournament standings" but "just wanted to play chess". He chose an off-beat line against the French, with an early d2-d3 and then d3-d4 which led to a Sicilian structure.
I just wanted to get a position. Earlier he showed very good preparation and understanding in the Rubinstein variation of the French, so I just wanted to play chess instead of make it a theoretical battle. I think it was a good choice.
Nakamura felt that Tiviakov played too passively, when the Dutchman just defended his d-pawn. He should have played more actively.
Once he misses opportunities in the opening I think it's just very difficult. [Around move 30] it's probably just losing. He really has no active plan and the knight never gets to d4 because my knight gets to d5 first.
The game between Anish Giri and Hou Yifan was a draw. A lot of what Giri had prepared before the game actually came on the board. Way into the double rook ending the Dutchman had seen everything on his computer screen! He knew it wasn't much for white but still hoped for more. But Hou defended well.
This meant that Nakamura eventually won with a 1.5 point margin. We'll soon post a video interview with him here at ChessVibes.
Nakamura joked: "In such a short tournament there's not really enough time to lose four games in a row!"
Tiviakov still finished clear second with a 50% score. At the closing ceremony the Russian born Dutch GM said that he's still trying to improve his chess. He's been studying the French lately and it worked quite well in Hoogeveen.
Tiviakov added the French to his repertoire
Giri ended on -1, drawing all his games after his first round loss against the tournament winner.
It wasn't much. It was similar to London; you're hoping to get some chances but I had only one serious chance, this Rd3 against Tiviakov. With Black it was no fun each time, and with White it wasn't much either. If I had won against Tivi or drawn with Hikaru at least I would have 50%. With minus one it's just no fun playing, you're trying to get to 50% but that wasn't your initial goal either. That's not very inspiring.
Giri: not a very inspiring tournament
Hou Yifan finished on -2. The Chinese also missed a few good opportunities, but still had a good time in Hoogeveen, together with her mother.
The chess atmosphere is very nice here, and also the natural environment in the area.
Hou Yifan and here mother arrive at the playing hall on Friday
In just ten days the Women's World Champion will be defending her title in a tough, 64-player knockout in Khanty-Mansiysk. Understandably, the Chinese prefers the men's system:
I think a match is better because this is less tiring, and in general there are more "accidents" in a knockout. I think the men's system is more fair.
Hou Yifan has ten days to get ready for Khanty
Univé Tournament | Crown group | Final standings
At the closing, the four players gave short interviews to the press chief
The open tournament saw a very exciting finish. The the top boards were all still playing for more than an hour after the four Crown Group participants had finished. The prize giving had to be postponed for a while, and in the mean time everyone enjoyed himself in his own way. Tiviakov was following the open games from the press room, Giri and Guramishvili played some more chess together and Nakamura, as mentioned earlier, had good fun with a number of bughouse games.
As Van Kampen-Timman and S.Kasparov-Ernst were drawn, everything was decided on board one. Erwin l'Ami beat Friso Nijboer in a knight ending, and emerged as the winner on all tie-breaks: Sonnenborn-Berger, Buchholz and, most importantly, mutual result.
The last time I beat Friso was ten years ago. My score against him is really terrible so I'm quite happy that I managed today!
Univé Tournament | Open group | Final standings
|1||GM L'Ami, Erwin||7.0||NED||M||2631||2634||+0.12||1.0||53.0||41.0|
|2||GM Nijboer, Friso||7.0||NED||M||2525||2550||+0.45||0.0||43.5||32.0|
|3||GM Ernst, Sipke||6.5||NED||M||2554||2572||+0.38||.||49.5||35.0|
|4||GM Timman, Jan||6.5||NED||M||2578||2480||-0.67||.||45.0||31.75|
|5||GM Van Kampen, Robin||6.5||NED||M||2570||2519||-0.37||.||45.0||31.75|
|6||IM Bosboom, Manuel||6.5||NED||M||2402||2500||+1.03||.||45.0||30.25|
|7||IM Willemze, Thomas||6.0||NED||M||2377||2518||+1.70||.||50.0||32.5|
|8||GM Grandelius, Nils||6.0||SWE||M||2593||2484||-1.01||.||47.5||31.0|
|9||GM Kasparov, Sergey||6.0||BLR||M||2476||2429||-0.45||.||46.0||29.5|
|10||IM Guramishvili, Sopiko||6.0||GEO||F||2418||2403||-0.05||.||46.0||28.25|
|11||IM Van Delft, Merijn||6.0||NED||M||2395||2394||+0.04||.||41.5||25.25|
|12||IM Valdes, Leonardo||5.5||CRC||M||2414||2499||+1.09||.||51.5||28.75|
|13||IM Riemersma, Li||5.5||NED||M||2420||2467||+0.62||.||51.0||29.5|
|14||GM Brynell, Stellan||5.5||SWE||M||2500||2459||-0.36||.||49.0||28.0|
|15||FM Bezemer, Arno||5.5||NED||M||2329||2379||+0.60||.||47.0||25.75|
|16||IM Hendriks, Willy||5.5||NED||M||2437||2413||-0.21||.||46.5||27.0|
|17||IM De Jong, Migchiel||5.5||NED||M||2369||2398||+0.50||.||46.0||25.75|
|18||FM Schoorl, Rob||5.5||NED||M||2363||2417||+0.74||.||45.0||25.25|
|19||FM Okkes, Menno||5.5||NED||M||2368||2285||-0.75||.||43.5||25.75|
|20||IM Afek, Yochanan||5.5||ISR||M||2312||2305||-0.05||.||41.5||23.25|
|22||De Ruiter, Danny||5.0||NED||M||2182||2381||+2.24||.||49.5||27.75|
|23||Van Foreest, Jorden||5.0||NED||M||2225||2377||+1.83||.||48.0||24.75|
|24||WGM L'Ami, Alina||5.0||ROU||F||2376||2355||-0.15||.||45.0||23.0|
|26||FM Vedder, Richard||5.0||NED||M||2267||2242||-0.19||.||45.0||22.25|
|27||FM Heemskerk, Wim||5.0||NED||M||2254||2243||-0.07||.||42.5||21.25|
|28||IM Wiersma, Eelke||5.0||NED||M||2367||2326||-0.43||.||42.5||19.75|
|29||FM Clemens, Adrian||5.0||NED||M||2213||2273||+0.57||.||42.0||19.75|
|30||IM Vedder, Henk||5.0||NED||M||2378||2233||-1.61||.||41.5||22.25|
|31||IM Piasetski, Leon||5.0||CAN||M||2298||2280||-0.26||.||41.0||20.25|
|32||Ben Artzi, Ido||5.0||ISR||M||2286||2205||-0.91||.||40.5||20.75|
|35||Lee, Kai Jie Edward||4.5||SIN||M||2132||2327||+2.17||.||46.0||21.75|
|38||Van Foreest, Lucas||4.5||NED||M||1952||2292||+3.38||.||44.5||22.5|
|43||FM Van der Poel, Henk||4.5||NED||M||2306||2109||-2.22||.||39.5||19.0|
|44||FM Vogel, Jaap||4.5||NED||M||2158||2207||+0.54||.||39.5||17.75|
|47||Van der Lende, Ilias||4.0||NED||M||2169||2259||+1.01||.||43.5||16.25|
|50||Van Osch, Mees||4.0||NED||M||2083||2151||+0.78||.||37.5||14.5|
|51||WFM Kazarian, Anna-Maja||4.0||NED||F||1864||2095||+2.46||.||34.5||13.75|
|52||Van der Raaf, Erik||4.0||NED||M||2163||2031||-1.53||.||33.5||13.25|
|54||WIM Padurariu, Ioana-Smaranda||3.5||ROU||F||2236||2093||-1.69||.||41.5||14.0|
|55||CM Van 't Hof, Eric||3.5||NED||M||2137||2203||+0.57||.||40.5||11.75|
|60||WIM Kasparova, Tatiana||3.5||BLR||F||2126||2113||-0.24||.||37.0||11.5|
|65||Van Wageningen, Arie||3.5||NED||M||2044 *||2019||2019||.||31.5||9.25|
|66||WFM Slingerland, Caroline||3.5||NED||F||2103||2020||-0.98||.||31.0||8.75|
|67||FM Lorscheid, Gerhard||3.0||GER||M||2267||2250||-0.19||.||41.5||10.0|
|77||Van der Lende, Nathalie||2.0||NED||F||1968||1776||-1.66||.||25.5||3.5|
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