Visit of the Corus Tournament in Wijk aan Zee
Appendix: Bibliographical Remarks
After finishing the first part of the board meeting at about 14:45 pm all six participants of the meeting went by car (difficulty: no street-map on "board") and by train (difficulty: missing one train by 30 seconds) to Wijk aan Zee.
But as the picture shows all KWA-people were reunited after a while (at 17:00 pm) at the entrance of the tournament hall.
It was really great to visit this very traditional tournament - especially the large number (about 1500) of players and visitors was impressing. Listening to the game comments of Hans Böhm and Vlastimil Hort in the big exhibition hall was as enjoyable as watching the grandmasters nearby in the tournament hall.
Report from the Corus-website (www.coruschess.com) of round 6:
After a day of rest, the players in the Grandmaster Group A continued where they had left off resulting in another round of fierce battles. Unlike round 5, round 6 produced several victories for the leaders. First to walk off stage was Michael Adams. His opening advantage against Evgeny Bareev seemed to be insufficient to win, but the Russian grandmaster again blundered badly in his beloved French. Disappointed after losing a key pawn, Bareev immediately resigned - just before Ralf Binnewirtz and I arrived. Viswanathan Anand had to invest a lot more energy to beat his opponent, Alexey Shirov. Out of a Petroff Defence Anand reached an endgame with very active pieces. His piece activity was converted into a rook endgame with two pawns up, that seemed to be winning. However, Anand's pawns were a bit too eager to get across when the Indian grandmaster erred with 26.f4?, where 26.f3! would have been correct. Shirov possibly missed something later on when he tried to get a theoretically known drawn position, although even Anand was not sure of this.
Impressions from the Tournament Part One
The both leading A's, Adams and Anand, only managed to leave behind one of five leaders, Peter Leko. The Hungarian grandmaster was unable to crack Vladimir Akopian's defence. The leading V's, Veselin Topalov and Vladimir Kramnik, did not slip. At first sight, Topalov seemed to be going straight for Viorel Bologan's king. When the Moldovan grandmaster held on, Topalov changed gears to reach a better endgame with a powerful White knight on c5. Guided by this knight, Topalov brought home two of his pawns, forcing resignation. Kramnik had to do even more work as Zhang Zhong was unwilling to cooperate.
The spectators' prize went to a wild game of pinball between the highest rated Dutchman and the Dutch Champion. First Black (van Wely) missed a win, later on White (Sokolov), so finally it turned out neither player could avoid the move repetition.
Impressions from the Tournament Part Two
The Dutch Timman-loving audience was very close to another joyous day. Reaching the time control after a nicely played game, Timman's position looked very promising, as his opponent Peter Svidler fully realized. Unfortunately, Timman was unable to calculate the complex endgame in depth and settled for a draw by repetition, much to Svidler's relief.
In Grandmaster Group B Laurent Fressinet increased his lead to a full point by beating the German GM Eric Lobron, the winner of last year's GM-C. Daniel Stellwagen, the only International Master in this group, had a bad day at the hands of Friso Nijboer. Stellwagen now needs two points from his next three games to fulfill the requirements for a GM-norm. Most fascinating for me was watching the timetrouble-duel of Granda Zuniga and Stefanova - the Peruvian GM, just back to the scenery played the difficult position with a superb calmness.
In Grandmaster Group C, IM's Sipke Ernst and Magnus Carlsen are on schedule for a GM-norm: Ernst needs a point-and-a-half, while Carlsen only needs one point from his next three games.
Challenger #9 Corus Chess Tournament Challengers
There was a daily solving competition accompanying the tournament - anyone who had successfully participated at least 10 times could hope for a money prize.
The opposite two-mover from this competition was surely a minor challenge (only the key move was required).
For the solution see below.
Solution of the two-mover Challenger #9:
1.Qh4? (2.Qxh1/Qxe4#) Qxh4?/Rxh4?
2.Rg1/Re3# fails because of 1... Qf1!
1.Qd4? (2.Qxe4/Qxc3#) Rxd4/Bxd4?
2.Re3/Bd2#, but 1... Re2!
1.Qh8! (2.Qxc3/Qxh1#) Bxh8/Qxh8 2.Bd2/Rg1#
Bibliographical Remarks I
Bewerwijk / Wijk aan Zee has not only a long tradition of important chess tournaments (starting in 1938, only interrupted in 1945, so it is No. 66 in 2004.) but there is also a long series of different tournament books and bulletins published. So it´s a pity for the collectors of chess literature that nowadays nice tournament books are only produced very seldom.
The first one is "Hans Kmoch, Het Schaakcongres Beverwijk 1946 - published by the Hoogoven-Tournooiclub" - which gives also a short overview on the first tournaments by P.A. Veldheer: page 3-4
Very impressing is the book "60 jaar Hoogovens Schaaktoernooi" by Lex Jongsma and Alexander Münninghoff - published by New In Chess Interchess BV in 1998.
Bibliographical Remarks II
Finally we present some pictures of a calendar published in 1988 at the 50th anniversary of the "Hoogovens" (please click on a small picture to navigate through the large pictures).