Reports | July 21, 2009 2:31

Local heros Bluvshtein and Porper surprise at Canadian Open

Bluvshtein wins Canadian Open 2009Especially when a number of elite grandmasters come and play, it's nice to have a local winner and this is what happened at the Canadian Open, where GM Mark Bluvshtein and IM Edward Porper, both from Canada, finished shared first with a fine score of 7.5/9, ahead of Adams, Ni Hua, Shirov and other strong GMs. Bluvshtein was declared winner on tiebreak.

This year's Canadian Open took place July 11-19 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. It was one big group, with 203 participants, and clearly one of the strongest open Swisses in the calendar because among the participants were 2700+ players Alexei Shirov, Ni Hua and Michael Adams. Besides, many top Canadian players participated and eventually two of them finished at the top of the standings.

Rounds 5-9

From our previous report on the first five rounds we already know that that there wasn't a clear favorite in Edmonton this year. Besides, FM Theo Hommeles from the Netherlands and Canadian IM Edward Porper had started quite well, as both were sharing the lead with many GMs.

Hommeles can be satisfied with a a fine tournament in which he defeated IM Samsonkin (2612) and GM Ni Hua (2702), to find himself playing for first place against Mark Bluvshtein in the last round. However, the Dutchman lost this game and so he couldn't repeat what his compatriot Hans Ree had done back in 1971: finishing shared first at the Canadian Open in Vancouver (together with Boris Spassky). After learning about this success of his arch-enemy Ree, the famous Dutch writer Jan Hein Donner wrote an article titled “Does Canada exist?” :-) as was also pointed out by Rini Luyks in the comments.

Hommeles beats Ni Hua

Ni Hua (2701) vs Theo Hommeles (2412): 0-1!

Porper, on the other hand, managed to play an even better last half of the tournament: he drew with Shirov in round 6, then beat Mikhalevski in round 7, then drew with Adams and then the Canadian even beat Ganguly in the last round!

Edward Porper

IM Edward Porper is already rated 2501 and played far stronger than that

Before the final round there was a 9-way tie between GM Mark Bluvshtein, GM Alexei Shirov, IM Edward Porper, GM Michael Adams, GM Surya Ganguly, GM Eugene Perelshteyn, IM Irina Krush, FM Jonathan Tayar and FM Theo Hommeles NED who were all on 6.5/8.

As mentioned before, Bluvshtein beat Hommeles and Porper beat Ganguly. The two finished shared first with 7.5/9 as top GMs Shirov and Adams were held to a draw by Perelshteyn and Krush respectively. According to the tournament website Mark Bluvshtein won on tiebreak.


GM Mark Bluvshtein (2598), proud winner of the Canadian Open 2009

Candian Open 2009 | Final Standings

Candian Open 2009 | Final Standings

You can replay all games here at the Monroi Tournament Website.




Photos & videos © Zeljka Malobabic of MonRoi, published with permission.



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Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers

Founder and editor-in-chief of, 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.


Yochanan Afek's picture

The local talents Bluvshtein and Porper as well as Gerzhoy have all emmigrated to Canada from the same single city: Haifa, Israel. Congratulations from their friends in the Maccabia games played on now in Netanya.

Karl's picture

Does anyone know whether Hommeles made a norm?

Eric's picture

He didn't. He played only 4 title holders and 5 are required.

Mark Howitt's picture

Lol yeah... maybe article should be edited to say 'from Israel' ;). Seems nice tournament though!

Dima Tyomkin's picture

Bravo, Mark and Ed!
Mark always performs well in Canadian Opens, especially if Shirov is playing in it, so no surprise, but Ed really has impressed me with his play and scores in rounds 6-9. Well done! Has he achieved a GM norm in Canadian Open?

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