Reports | September 07, 2012 2:41

Four-way tie at Olympiad as Russia loses to USA

Russia-USA

Anything's possible at the Olympiad in Istanbul after Russia lost a dramatic match to the USA on Thursday. These two teams are now in joint first place together with Armenia and China. In the women's section China kept its lead thanks to a 3-1 win over France.

An exciting match Russia-USA at the top boards | All photos by ChessVibes & David Llada, Arman Karakhayan and Anastasiya Karlovich courtesy of FIDE & the official website

Event Olympiad | PGN: Open & Women via TWIC
Dates August 28-September 9, 2012
Location Istanbul, Turkey
System Team Swiss, 11 rounds
Players Open, top 10: Aronian, Kramnik, Radjabov, Karjakin, Nakamura, Caruana, Ivanchuk, Grischuk, Topalov, Kamsky
Women, top 10: A.Muzychuk, Hou Yifan, Zhao Xue, Dzagnidze, Lahno, T.Kosintseva, Ju Wenjun, N.Kosintseva, Cmilyte, Zatonskih
Rate of play

90 minutes for 40 moves + 30 minutes to finish the game + 30 seconds increment from move 1

Tie-break 1) Match points 2) Sonneborn-Berger without lowest result 3) Game points
Extra No draw offers before move 30

The night before the match Hikaru Nakamura tweeted:

The day of reckoning has come at last. Time to give everything and play our absolute best against the big bad Russians. #GO USA!

It was clear that a highly motivated U.S. squad came to the boards, ready to fight the Russians. It was also a must-win situation for the Americans as their opponents were defending a two point lead.

The match started with a rather boring draw on board three between Alexander Onischuk and Sergey Karjakin. The other three went on for five hours, and again one of the spectators was Garry Kasparov. Another was Alexander Onischuk, who should have left the playing hall according to the regulations (and was asked several times) but just couldn't drag himself away from the fight.

At some point Hikaru Nakamura had an extra piece against Vladimir Kramnik but the position was tricky, Gata Kamsky was a pawn up against Alexander Grischuk but Kasparov assessed the ending as "easy to draw" while Ray Robson was under big pressure against Dmitry Jakovenko.

Grischuk-Kamsky was heading to a draw as well, until the Russian suddenly blundered terribly in the infamous RB vs R ending which he had entered voluntarily.

PGN string

Jakovenko then won his game and reached a score of 6/7.

PGN string

The score was equal again, but things looked pretty grim for Russia's top player. While Kramnik was thinking, Nakamura was pacing up and down along the boards. His advantage was growing and growing, but Kramnik did manage to create complications. Nakamura found his way, and in a study-like manner (with a minor promotion!) he reached a winning position. The last twenty moves or so were played rather quickly on the increment, but eventually Kramnik had to throw in the towel.

PGN string

Kamsky was the first to congratulate Nakamura, who then needed to perform a doping test. The American top player was surprised that he was chosen (and not his opponent as well, or the whole US team) but did his duty.

USA-Russia video

China and Armenia were the other two countries that caught the Russians in first place. The Chinese team easily defeated the Philippines (2.5-1.5) but yet again Wesley So drew with a top player.

PGN string

The way Ding Liren is demolishing his opponents is just brutal:

PGN string

Armenia kept chances to win their third gold after beating Germany 2.5-1.5. On board one Levon Aronian managed to win an opposite-coloured bishop ending with just one passed pawn:

PGN string

Daniel Fridman won against Gabriel Sargissian and Igor Khenkin drew with Sergei Movsesian, so the following terrible blunder was a decisive factor:

PGN string

Poland and Azerbaijan drew their match as Radjabov suffered his first loss of the tournament. It looks like a pretty straightforward win by Wojtaszek based on top level (!) preparation:

PGN string

Ukraine beat France 3-1 and the board one game should not be missed:

PGN string

Christian Bauer got mated in an ending:

PGN string

After a bad start without Giri, the Netherlands just keeps on winning. This time the victim was Israel, and Loek what happened on board two:

PGN string

Jan Smeets must have enjoyed his game a lot, with such an active king, three sacrifices and those pawns that kept on rolling:

PGN string

After this round USA is the only top team that's still undefeated (India didn't lose either with three wins and six ties). They have the worst tie-break of the four leading teams and probably need to win their last two matches to clinch gold. In the 10th round the top pairings are China-USA, Argentina-Russia, Netherlands-Armenia and Azerbaijan-Ukraine.

It might be a good idea to mention the tie-break rules, taken from the FIDE Handbook

The position of teams that finish with the same number of match points shall be determined by application of the following tie-breaking procedures in sequence, proceeding from (a) to (b) to (c) to the extent required:

a) the sum of Sonneborn-Berger points, which are calculated as follows:
match points of each opponent, excluding the opponent who scored the lowest number of match points, multiplied by the number of game points achieved against this opponent;

b) by the number of the game points scored;

c) by the sum of the match points of all the teams opponents, excluding the lowest one.
For tie-break purposes a bye or an unplayed match - if the opponent team does not appear on time – are counted as a drawn match against a virtual opponent. At the start of the round this virtual opponent has the same number of match points and game points as the team present. Then the result of the unplayed match is added (1 matchpoint and 4 gamepoints in case of an unplayed win, 1 matchpoint and 2 gamepoints in case of a bye, 0 matchpoints and 0 gamepoints in case of an unplayed loss) and finally for each subsequent round 1 matchpoint and 2 gamepoints.

China is still leading the women's section by one point. On Thursday they defeated France. Here's the game on board one:

PGN string

Russia is still trailing by a point after beating India. Alexandra Kosteniuk had an easy day.

PGN string

Having played all the strong teams already, China is actually very close to winning gold. On Friday they play Kazakhstan while Russia faces Armenia.

Olympiad 2012 | Top results round 9

Bo. 5 United States Of America (USA) Rtg - 1 Russia (RUS) Rtg 2½:1½
1/1 GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2778 - GM Kramnik, Vladimir 2797 1 - 0
1/2 GM Kamsky, Gata 2746 - GM Grischuk, Alexander 2763 1 - 0
1/3 GM Onishuk, Alexander 2666 - GM Karjakin, Sergey 2785 ½ - ½
1/4 GM Robson, Ray 2598 - GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2722 0 - 1
Bo. 35 Philippines (PHI) Rtg - 6 China (CHN) Rtg ½ :3½
2/1 GM So, Wesley 2652 - GM Wang, Hao 2726 ½ - ½
2/2 GM Barbosa, Oliver 2554 - GM Ding, Liren 2695 0 - 1
2/3 GM Torre, Eugene 2469 - GM Bu, Xiangzhi 2670 0 - 1
2/4 GM Paragua, Mark 2508 - GM Li, Chao 2665 0 - 1
Bo. 3 Armenia (ARM) Rtg - 14 Germany (GER) Rtg 2½:1½
3/1 GM Aronian, Levon 2816 - GM Naiditsch, Arkadij 2712 1 - 0
3/2 GM Movsesian, Sergei 2698 - GM Khenkin, Igor 2656 ½ - ½
3/3 GM Akopian, Vladimir 2687 - GM Meier, Georg 2648 1 - 0
3/4 GM Sargissian, Gabriel 2693 - GM Fridman, Daniel 2653 0 - 1
Bo. 16 Poland (POL) Rtg - 7 Azerbaijan (AZE) Rtg 2 : 2
4/1 GM Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2717 - GM Radjabov, Teimour 2788 1 - 0
4/2 GM Socko, Bartosz 2635 - GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2729 0 - 1
4/3 GM Swiercz, Dariusz 2594 - GM Mamedov, Rauf 2634 ½ - ½
4/4 GM Macieja, Bartlomiej 2594 - GM Guseinov, Gadir 2613 ½ - ½
Bo. 2 Ukraine (UKR) Rtg - 8 France (FRA) Rtg 3 : 1
5/1 GM Ivanchuk, Vassily 2769 - GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2686 1 - 0
5/2 GM Ponomariov, Ruslan 2734 - GM Fressinet, Laurent 2714 ½ - ½
5/3 GM Eljanov, Pavel 2693 - GM Edouard, Romain 2652 ½ - ½
5/4 GM Moiseyenko, Aleksandr 2706 - GM Bauer, Christian 2682 1 - 0
Bo. 9 Netherlands (NED) Rtg - 12 Israel (ISR) Rtg 3 : 1
6/1 GM Giri, Anish 2711 - GM Gelfand, Boris 2738 ½ - ½
6/2 GM Van Wely, Loek 2691 - GM Sutovsky, Emil 2687 1 - 0
6/3 GM Sokolov, Ivan 2696 - GM Rodshtein, Maxim 2642 ½ - ½
6/4 GM Smeets, Jan 2608 - GM Avrukh, Boris 2605 1 - 0
Bo. 20 Serbia (SRB) Rtg - 29 Argentina (ARG) Rtg 1½:2½
7/1 GM Ivanisevic, Ivan 2645 - GM Peralta, Fernando 2606 0 - 1
7/2 GM Markus, Robert 2599 - GM Flores, Diego 2589 ½ - ½
7/3 GM Perunovic, Milos 2614 - GM Felgaer, Ruben 2570 ½ - ½
7/4 GM Sedlak, Nikola 2549 - GM Mareco, Sandro 2589 ½ - ½
Bo. 4 Hungary (HUN) Rtg - 22 Italy (ITA) Rtg 3 : 1
8/1 GM Leko, Peter 2737 - GM Caruana, Fabiano 2773 ½ - ½
8/2 GM Almasi, Zoltan 2713 - GM Brunello, Sabino 2586 ½ - ½
8/3 GM Polgar, Judit 2698 - GM Vocaturo, Daniele 2542 1 - 0
8/4 GM Berkes, Ferenc 2685 - IM Dvirnyy, Daniyyl 2520 1 - 0
Bo. 26 Georgia (GEO) Rtg - 13 India (IND) Rtg 2 : 2
9/1 GM Mchedlishvili, Mikheil 2659 - GM Sasikiran, Krishnan 2707 ½ - ½
9/2 GM Gagunashvili, Merab 2578 - GM Harikrishna, Pentala 2685 ½ - ½
9/3 GM Sanikidze, Tornike 2585 - GM Gupta, Abhijeet 2637 0 - 1
9/4 GM Pantsulaia, Levan 2575 - GM Gopal, Geetha Narayanan 2550 1 - 0
Bo. 27 Vietnam (VIE) Rtg - 11 England (ENG) Rtg 3 : 1
10/1 GM Le, Quang Liem 2693 - GM Adams, Michael 2722 1 - 0
10/2 GM Nguyen, Ngoc Truong Son 2639 - GM Short, Nigel 2698 ½ - ½
10/3 IM Nguyen, Van Huy 2506 - GM Howell, David 2635 1 - 0
10/4 IM Nguyen, Doc Hoa 2505 - GM Pert, Nicholas 2555 ½ - ½

Olympiad 2012 | Round 9 standings (top 30)

Rk. SNo Team Rounds + = - TB1 TB2 TB3 TB4
1 6 China 9 7 1 1 15 272 26 100
2 1 Russia 9 7 1 1 15 268,5 23 107
3 3 Armenia 9 7 1 1 15 258,5 23,5 104
4 5 USA 9 6 3 0 15 252 26 93
5 2 Ukraine 9 7 0 2 14 240 24 99
6 9 Netherlands 9 7 0 2 14 218 25 85
7 29 Argentina 9 6 2 1 14 216,5 22,5 90
8 17 Czech Republic 9 5 3 1 13 247 24 92
9 7 Azerbaijan 9 5 3 1 13 246,5 25 97
10 4 Hungary 9 6 1 2 13 233,5 22,5 98
11 14 Germany 9 5 3 1 13 228,5 22,5 99
12 35 Philippines 9 6 1 2 13 209,5 23 95
13 39 Denmark 9 6 1 2 13 204,5 24 74
14 32 Belarus 9 6 1 2 13 203 23,5 84
15 16 Poland 9 6 1 2 13 202 23 92
16 27 Vietnam 9 5 3 1 13 193 24 79
17 15 Cuba 9 6 0 3 12 228,5 26 84
18 26 Georgia 9 5 2 2 12 218 23,5 92
19 13 India 9 3 6 0 12 216 22 97
20 10 Bulgaria 9 6 0 3 12 214,5 23 91
21 33 Uzbekistan 9 5 2 2 12 214 23 94
22 8 France 9 5 2 2 12 212,5 21,5 93
23 21 Greece 9 5 2 2 12 212 25,5 85
24 25 Romania 9 6 0 3 12 205,5 23,5 89
25 18 Spain 9 6 0 3 12 203 22 94
26 19 Croatia 9 5 2 2 12 199,5 20,5 92
27 12 Israel 9 5 2 2 12 196,5 21 89
28 28 Slovenia 9 5 2 2 12 188 20 88
29 58 Venezuela 9 6 0 3 12 172 19 85
30 23 Moldova 9 5 1 3 11 226 25 88

Women's Olympiad 2012 | Top results round 9

Bo. 1 China (CHN) Rtg - 14 France (FRA) Rtg 3 : 1
1/1 GM Hou, Yifan 2599 - IM Skripchenko, Almira 2442 1 - 0
1/2 GM Zhao, Xue 2549 - IM Milliet, Sophie 2411 1 - 0
1/3 WGM Ju, Wenjun 2528 - WGM Maisuradze, Nino 2284 ½ - ½
1/4 WGM Huang, Qian 2449 - IM Collas, Silvia 2261 ½ - ½
Bo. 6 India (IND) Rtg - 2 Russia (RUS) Rtg 1 : 3
2/1 GM Dronavalli, Harika 2503 - GM Kosintseva, Tatiana 2530 ½ - ½
2/2 IM Karavade, Eesha Sanjay 2371 - IM Gunina, Valentina 2507 0 - 1
2/3 IM Sachdev, Tania 2379 - GM Kosintseva, Nadezhda 2524 ½ - ½
2/4 WGM Soumya, Swaminathan 2271 - GM Kosteniuk, Alexandra 2489 0 - 1
Bo. 22 Kazakhstan (KAZ) Rtg - 35 Uzbekistan (UZB) Rtg 2½:1½
3/1 WIM Nakhbayeva, Guliskhan 2291 - WIM Muminova, Nafisa 2329 ½ - ½
3/2 WIM Dauletova, Gulmira 2267 - WFM Gevorgyan, Irina 2178 1 - 0
3/3 WIM Saduakassova, Dinara 2216 -   Nadirjanova, Nodira 2185 1 - 0
3/4 WIM Davletbayeva, Madina 2165 -   Kurbonboyeva, Sarvinoz 2143 0 - 1
Bo. 5 United States of America (USA) Rtg - 4 Ukraine (UKR) Rtg 1 : 3
4/1 IM Zatonskih, Anna 2512 - GM Lahno, Kateryna 2542 0 - 1
4/2 IM Krush, Irina 2467 - IM Muzychuk, Mariya 2466 ½ - ½
4/3 WGM Foisor, Sabina 2356 - IM Ushenina, Anna 2433 ½ - ½
4/4 WGM Abrahamyan, Tatev 2303 - IM Yanovska, Inna 2404 0 - 1
Bo. 13 Bulgaria (BUL) Rtg - 7 Poland (POL) Rtg 1½:2½
5/1 GM Stefanova, Antoaneta 2502 - GM Socko, Monika 2467 ½ - ½
5/2 WGM Videnova, Iva 2317 - IM Rajlich, Iweta 2412 ½ - ½
5/3 WGM Nikolova, Adriana 2299 - WGM Zawadzka, Jolanta 2377 0 - 1
5/4 WGM Voiska, Margarita 2281 - WGM Szczepkowska, Karina 2375 ½ - ½
Bo. 26 Iran (IRI) Rtg - 8 Armenia (ARM) Rtg 1 : 3
6/1 WGM Pourkashiyan, Atousa 2313 - GM Danielian, Elina 2476 0 - 1
6/2 WIM Khademalsharieh, Sarasadat 2270 - IM Mkrtchian, Lilit 2454 ½ - ½
6/3 WIM Hakimifard, Ghazal 2249 - IM Galojan, Lilit 2349 ½ - ½
6/4 WIM Ghaderpour, Shayesteh 2218 - WGM Kursova, Maria 2338 0 - 1

Women's Olympiad 2012 | Round 9 standings (top 20)

Rk. SNo Team Rounds + = - TB1 TB2 TB3 TB4
1 1 China 9 7 2 0 16 287 27 102
2 2 Russia 9 6 3 0 15 266,5 25,5 102
3 4 Ukraine 9 5 4 0 14 266 24,5 103
4 22 Kazakhstan 9 6 2 1 14 236 25 91
5 7 Poland 9 6 2 1 14 236 24,5 97
6 8 Armenia 9 7 0 2 14 231 23,5 92
7 14 France 9 6 1 2 13 242,5 25 99
8 25 Israel 9 6 1 2 13 223,5 25 86
9 27 Azerbaijan 9 6 1 2 13 221 23 96
10 11 Spain 9 6 1 2 13 213,5 23 88
11 35 Uzbekistan 9 6 1 2 13 213,5 22 96
12 6 India 9 6 1 2 13 208,5 22 99
13 9 Germany 9 6 1 2 13 202,5 23,5 89
14 5 USA 9 5 2 2 12 212,5 24,5 88
15 16 Slovenia 9 3 6 0 12 210 21,5 97
16 12 Hungary 9 5 2 2 12 204 23 89
17 17 Netherlands 9 5 2 2 12 202,5 23,5 88
18 10 Romania 9 6 0 3 12 199,5 22,5 89
19 21 Mongolia 9 6 0 3 12 199 23 91
20 13 Bulgaria 9 5 2 2 12 198,5 23 86

 

Tags:

Share |
Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers

Founder and editor-in-chief of ChessVibes.com, Peter is responsible for most of the chess news and tournament reports. Often visiting top events, he also provides photos and videos for the site. He's a 1.e4 player himself, likes Thai food and the Stones.

Chess.com

Comments

RuralRob's picture

Naka is now #4 in the live ratings, and has a pretty good shot at reaching #3 by the end of the Olympiad!

Anonymous's picture

Kramnik and Grischuk suffering from food sickness, both vomit during the night. Why is no one talking about this?

Morley's picture

Where did you hear this?

Thomas's picture

If this is true, we will probably hear about it only after the Olympiad (not now when it could help the Russian opponents if they know). Europe Echecs has a video just before the Russia-USA match started:
http://www.europe-echecs.com/actualites/la-ronde-9-4486.html
Kramnik seemed to be in a cheerful mood - joking first with Nakamura, then with Grischuk. But again if he is feeling awful he will not show it ... .

Zeblakob's picture

Yes, the turkish food is too salty.

dave's picture

Food poisoning by high salt content:)

Morley's picture

Great fight by the USA today. The top two boards were pretty wild! I look forward to the last two rounds. I think that, assuming Nakamura beats Wang Hao and then is paired against and beats Aronian, he has a shot of breaking 2800. He is within striking distance with this win today.

redivivo's picture

"assuming Nakamura beats Wang Hao"

That's hardly a given though, it isn't Kramnik or Anand he's facing now :-)

http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chess.pl?yearcomp=exactly&year=&playercom...

Jambow's picture

Nobody want's Nakamura to break 2800 more than I do but winning against either Wang Hao or Aronian is a rather tall order, but both of them is really a long shot and if Nakamura did it would be his best performance since Wijk in 2010 considering he just put Kramnik down. I hope he does though or at least wins and draws putting him in the 2790 elo range for a new personal best.

uschess's picture

yeah naka will really be motivated against wang hao after having dropped two promising games against him earlier this year. nice to see the usa win after having everyone assume russia's victory was a foregone conclusion.

redivivo's picture

Russia still not really impressing, but with Argentina in the next round and an easy opponent also in the last the gold is theirs anyway. Nakamura the only player in the world to have a plus score against both Anand and Kramnik?

Thomas's picture

I wonder which results Russia would need to impress redivivo - would 3-1 against all of their direct competitors be enough (they managed only against China), or does it have to be 4-0?

As to Russia getting easy opponents in the final rounds, (unlike the USA before yesterday) they earned such "luck" because they already played all of the strongest teams - and their overall results may not be impressive or convincing but still quite efficient. Russia may have to switch gears and go for maximum board points. Interesting that Kramnik gets a rest today - at this stage of the competition any decision can turn out to be 'wrong' but might also work out fine.

redivivo's picture

"I wonder which results Russia would need to impress redivivo - would 3-1 against all of their direct competitors be enough (they managed only against China)"

The four regular boards are losing in all more than 15 points. I wouldn't call that a particularly impressive performance by the Russian players, but it could still be enough in the end thanks to help from other teams. USA for example failed to beat India, the Czechs and Germany.

Thomas's picture

Noone would say that Russia was impressive against the USA, and this match alone accounts for 12 rating points lost by Kramnik, Grischuk and Karjakin. Before that, they more or less confirmed their impressive pre-tournament ratings. For your number-crunching, you also conveniently consider Tomashevsky a regular board, but even if he is official board 4 de facto he is or turned into the reserve player (the one playing the lowest number of games, including early warm-up matches against weak opposition).

As to "USA failed to beat ... Germany" - so did Azerbaijan and Hungary even lost. Armenia managed to win against Germany but that match was also close, even if there was an exchange of favors on boards 3 and 4: Meier blundered in a queen ending, and Sargissian voluntarily went from a worse rook endgame into a dead-lost pawn endgame.
Anyway, "help from other teams" is odd. Noone can win all their matches, and the 'Swiss gambit' approach may have helped the US team: They were still relatively fresh against Russia while the Russians had one tough opponent after the other - only top10 teams since round 4. In the preceding rounds, Russia faced Azerbaijan and Ukraine, and the USA Turkey and Macedonia (rest day for Nakamura).

RG's picture

Nakamura did not create winning chances against Kramnik, Kramnik made a series of poor moves and Nakamura accepted the opportunity. Even then he was pretty sloppy in finishing the game (see GM Alejandro Ramirez's analysis of the game).

Still, Nakamura is a great talent (even Kasparov admitted as much) but I don't think he could beat Kramnik nor Aronian in a match right now. But he's still young so we will see how far he develops.

Anonymous's picture

the only thing you say basically in your very long comment is " I DON'T THINK " ... What a deep thought

Anonymous's picture

If you improve your reading ability then it would not take you so "long" to read a paragraph.

Fontaines d'Escot's picture
Anonymous's picture

The Russian Team was doing great until Kasparov showed up. Go home Garry.

chesshire cat's picture

Repair the KID Radja! We're counting on you as one of the few top level KID players left!
Tha Bayonet must be blunted.

filiusdextris's picture

The Nakamura game reminds me how in 5 minute chess against the Rybka computers on ICC he would *voluntarily* underpromote to three or more knights just for the hell of it and checkmate his opponent. He has been doing this for a long time. Congrats!

Septimus's picture

Ding Lieren, wow! This guy is a killer.

Jambow's picture

Well I think Nakamura would have close to even chances in a match against Aronian and Kramnik today, the only top player he struggles against is Carlsen and has a winning record against Kramnik over the past several years. You could add WC Anand to that list BTW.

Funny thing is the top four players on the live rating list have never challenged for the world championship, me thinks FIDE is screwing up some where.

Thomas's picture

Nakamura's classical score against Kramnik is now +3=7-2. Certainly not dominance particularly if you take into account that his two earlier wins came when Kramnik was in an experimental mood (the second one when Vlad had already secured clear first in Dortmund 2011). On the other hand, Nakamura was outplayed in the games he lost.

As to the live rating list, it is what it is - just a snapshot in time. From the current top 4, Nakamura is a newcomer at this level, #s 2 and 3 (Aronian and Radjabov) tried to qualify for a match against Anand but didn't succeed, and #1 Carlsen didn't even try. Yes I know the Kazan format was criticized, but FIDE would screw up if they came up with a format that _guarantees_ that a high-rated player (and fan favorite) prevails. Ratings are one thing, the WCh cycle is something else.

uschess's picture

i agree w that except he also has a tough time vs chucky

Latest articles