Saturday, September 24, 2011

New Cebuano Grandmaster

Organised by the Kuala Lumpur Chess Association, with sponsorship from the Masterskill Education Group Berhad under its Educating Malaysia Corporate Social Responsibility program ,The DYTM Raja Dr. Nazrin Shah Invitational Masters proved a huge success with two new Grandmasters in Cebuano Richard Bitoon from Medellin and Oliver Barbosa from the Philippines.
In a tense last round encounter Bitoon, in a must win situation despite having the Black pieces, played a solid game over his unbeaten opponent, GM Tahir Vakhidov of Uzbekistan, to take the victory that won him his 3rd GM norm and the long overdue and well deserved Grandmaster title.
Filipino Oliver Barbosa made it a double celebration by winning the overall title and earning his third and also final grandmaster norm.
Richard got his first during the 2008 Singapore International Open and his second in the Battle of GMs earlier this year same as Barbosa,
Final standings(round robin):1 IM Barbosa Oliver PHI 2538 – 7;2.IM Vakhidov Jahongir UZB 2392 – 6.5;3. IM Bitoon Richard PHI 2504 – 6.5;4. IM Das Arghyadip IND 2461 – 5.5;5. GM Vakhidov Tahir UZB 2485 – 4.5;6. IM Goh Wei Ming Kevin SIN 2449 – 4;7. IM Nguyen Van Huy VIE 2449 – 3.5;8. GM Nguyen Anh Dung VIE 2479 – 3;9. IM Mas Hafizulhelmi MAS 2413 – 2.5;10. GM Wong Meng Kong SIN 2355 – 2.
Barbosa and Bitioon will still have to wait for a while for their GM titles which will be confirmed in the next FIDE congress. Both have the required minimum rating of 2500.
They are set to join the country’s elite GM circle which includes Eugene Torre, Rogelio Antonio Jr., Buenaventura Villamayor, Nelson Mariano II, Mark Paragua, Wesley So, Darwin Laylo, Jayson Gonzales, John Paul Gomez, Joseph Sanchez, Roland Salvador, Rogelio Barcenilla Jr., Julio Catalino Sadorra and the late Rosendo Balinas Jr.
World Cup The big story out of the FIDE World Cup in Russia was the incredible sportsmanship shown by David Navara and Alexander Moiseenko in the second game of their match, having drawn the first game. On the 35th move , Navara touch two pieces -- his king and a bishop -- at the same time, accidentally, which would force him to move the king -- and lose a piece.
Navara clearly didn't wish to move the king; a bishop move was the only move that made sense in the position. However, Moiseenko told Navara that he didn't need to move the king regardless of what he had touched, and the game continued.
After 40 moves, Navara had forced a winning position...but then offered Moiseenko a draw, feeling that winning the game would not be justified under the circumstances from earlier in the game. It was the kind of situation you see rarely in an elite tournament such as the World Cup; winning this match and moving on to the 4th round meant an extra $7,200 in guaranteed prize money! Navara would ultimately win the match in tiebreaks , 4-2 .
Both GMs received special monetary awards from the organizers.
The semifinals were between two Ukrainian and two Russian chess players: Vassily Ivanchuk vs Alexander Grischuk and Ruslan Ponomariov vs Peter Svidler.
Peter (Russia) won against Ruslan (Ukraine), and was the first to advanced to the final.
On the other board Alexander (Russia) defeated Vassily in the blitz portion of the tiebreaks to make the finals an all-Russian affair.
The winner will snare $120,000 and the runner-up $80,000 in a 4 game matchup including tiebreaks starting today.
Both will advance to the Candidates portion of the World Championship cycle as well as the winner between Ivanchuk and Ponomariov who will battle for 3rd ,also in 4 games.,

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