Reports | July 04, 2012 9:02

Russia leads 11-9 in annual match against China

Dmitry Jakovenko and Wang Hao shake hands at the start of round 2

The traditional match between Russia and China is under way in St. Petersburg. After two rounds, Russia is leading with 11-9 thanks to a 3-1 victory by the men's team in the first round. In this Scheveningen match, the teams will face each other in both classical and rapid chess.

Dmitry Jakovenko and Wang Hao shake hands at the start of round 1 | Photos © Russian Chess Federation

Event Russia-China match | PGN
Dates July 1-9, 2012
Location St. Petersburg, Russia
System 20-player Scheveningen match (classical & rapid chess)
Players

Men: Dmitry Jakovenko, Evgeny Tomashevsky, Ian Nepomniachtchi, Nikita Vitiugov (Russia) vs Wang Hao, Wang Yue, Li Chao, Ding Liren, Yu Yangyi (China)

Women: Valentina Gunina, Alexandra Kosteniuk, Natalija Pogonina, Olga Girya, Baira Kovanova (Russia) vs Zhao Xue, Ju Wenjun, Huang Qian, Shen Yang, Ding Yixin (China)

Rate of play Classical: 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
Rapid: 15 minutes for the game with an increment of 30 seconds
Extra No draw offers before move 40 are allowed
Prize fund Men US $30,000, Women US $20,000

Every year, since 2001, China and Russia face each other in a Scheveningen match. The teams consist of five men and five women (plus one reserve player) for each country. This year the line-ups are as follows:

Russia

Men

Evgeny Tomashevsky (2738), Dmitry Jakovenko (2736), Ian Nepomniachtchi (2716), Nikita Vitiugov (2703), Maxim Matlakov (2668) – average rating: 2712.2

Women

Valentina Gunina (2530), Alexandra Kosteniuk (2457), Natalia Pogonina (2447), Olga Girya (2414), Baira Kovanova (2391) – average rating: 2447.8

The Russian team at the opening ceremony on Sunday

China

Men

Wang Hao (2738), Li Chao (2703), Wang Yue (2690), Ding Liren (2679), Yu Yangyi (2626) – average rating: 2687.2

Women

Zhao Xue (2549), Ju Wenjun (2529), Shen Yang (2419), Huang Qian (2417), Ding Yixin (2353) – average rating: 2453.4

The Chinese team at the opening ceremony

Every even year the Russians are the hosts, and this time the match is played in St. Petersburg, with Evgeny Bareev as tournament director. From 2-6 July the players play classical games, and on 7-8 July rapid chess. The prize fund isn't bad at all: US $30,000 for the men and US $20,000 for the women.

Day 1

The Russian men's team started with a good victory on Monday: 3.5-1.5. Nepomniachtchi, Vitiugov and Matlakov won their white games while Wang Hao-Jakovenko ended in a draw. Evgeny Tomashevsky was defeated by Wang Yue.

The following encounter was surely the game of the day. Vitiugov played a combination that will surely reach the puzzle books:

PGN string

The women from China did something back though, scoring 3-2 in their match. Ding Yixin beat Baira Kovanova and the other four games ended in draws.

PGN string

Day 2

On Tuesday all games in the men's section ended in draws. The following game was arguably the most interesting one.

PGN string

The Russian ladies took revenge for the first day loss, winning with the same score: 3-2. Alexandra Kosteniuk and Valentine Gunina beat Zhao Xue and Shen Yang respectively. Pogonina-Ding Yixin and Girya-Huang Qian ended in draws. China's Ju Wenjun defeated Baira Kovanova, who is now the only player in both teams to start with two losses. 

Here's Alexandra Kosteniuk's good win of the second round:

PGN string

Alexandra Kosteniuk at the start of the second round

The score after two rounds is 11-9 in favor of Russia. The third round pairings are as follows:

Men
Jakovenko - Yu Yangyi, Tomashevsky-Ding Liren, Wang Hao-Nepomniachtchi, Wang Yue-Vityugov and Li Chao-Matlakov

Women
Ding Yixin-Gunina, Shen Yang-Kosteniuk, Pogonina-Zhao Xue, Girya-Ju Wenjun and Kovanova-Huang Qian

Each round starts at 15:00 local time (13:00 CET) and can be followed at the standard location for events organized by the Russian Chess Federation: online.russiachess.org.

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.

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Comments

Niima's picture

Is Russia's men team being coached by Yury Dokhoian?

bronkenstein's picture

Yes, he is the new coach - and this is kind of players form check for the incoming Olympics (we are talking reserves and eventual 4th board obviously).

Thomas's picture

This (test options for board 4 and 5) was also mentioned in the Chessdom preview - but shouldn't the first four Russian boards be clear? Kramnik, Karjakin, Grischuk, Morozevich - not necessarily in this exact order. Next in line by Elo would be Svidler - but he underperformed in several recent team events and was harshly criticized for it.

Thomas's picture

This (test options for board 4 and 5) was also mentioned in the Chessdom preview - but shouldn't the first four Russian boards be clear? Kramnik, Karjakin, Grischuk, Morozevich - not necessarily in this exact order. Next in line by Elo would be Svidler - but he underperformed in several recent team events and was harshly criticized for it.

unique wedding cake topper's picture

What's up it's me, I am also visiting this site daily, this web site is truly fastidious and
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Anonymous's picture

Peter, thanks for the thorough report....nice game by Ding, showing the power of pawns against an extra piece.

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