Friday, February 26, 2016

Pestaño: World women’s championship

THE 2016 World Championship match between current champion Maria Muzychuk of Ukraine and her challenger Hou Yifan of China, who is a former World Champion from 2010 to 2012 and from 2013 to 2015, will take place in Ukraine, starting March 1. It was originally scheduled last Oct. 11 to 31 but was postponed because no host could be found.
There is also a FIDE-scheduled World Championship in October 2016, which will be played as a 64 player knock-out tournament.
The 2015 Championship was a 64-player knockout tournament in Sochi, Russia, last March 15. Hou Yifan did not enter the tournament and so relinquished the title. The highest-rated player was Humpy Koneru, but she lost in the quarterfinal. The final was won by Mariya Muzychuk, who beat Natalia Pogonina, 2.5–1.5.
Hou Yifan earned the right to challenge her after she finished first in the Grand Prix Series 2013-2014.
Hou is heavily favored in this tournament as she has a rating of 2673 compared to Mariya’s 2554. The two have played in only three classical games against each other. One game ended in a draw, while the other two were won by Hou Yifan with the black pieces
The winner of the ten-game match is the first player to reach 5.5 points or more. Time control is 90 minutes for the first 40 moves, followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game, with an increment of 30 seconds per move starting from move one.
If the scores are level after the regular 10 games, there will be a new drawing of colors and four tie-break games will be played with 25 minutes for each player. There will be an increment of 10 seconds after each move.
If the scores are level after the four rapid games, there will be another drawing of colors, then two games will be played with a time control of five minutes plus three seconds’ increment after each move. In case of a level score, another two-game match will be played to determine a winner. If there is still no winner after five such matches, one sudden-death game will be played.
The prize fund for this match is 200,000 Euros, with 60 percent going to the winner if the match ends within the 10 regular games. If it goes to the tiebreak, the winner will get 55 percent.
In openings, Muzychuk usually plays Sicilian Defence with both white and black, followed by French Defence with white and Dutch Defence with black. Hou Yifan primarily plays 1.e4 as white. With black, she usually plays the Sicilian Defence as well as the French Defence. She also plays the Bogo-Indian and Queen’s Indian against 1.d4.
MCDONALDS. Our Lady journalist Keith Claire Morala and my favorite player sent in this report . “Ten-year old John Belano wrapped up his outstanding performance with a perfect score in the third monthly elimination of the McDonalds Jones Cup Chess Championships last Feb. 21 at the McDonalds Jones Branch.
The young champion outsmarted all six of his opponents in the 6-round Swiss System tournament, including second placer Edsel Vosotros. Vosotros tied with Jervy Villarin, Hardeil Salmeron and Angel Naureen Bagano, who was awarded the best female performer, at 5 points.
The rest of the top 10 players are Arje Villarin (4.5), Kirk Patrick Morala (4.0), Luisa Marie Ranili (4.0), Bon Joshua Teves (4.0) and Romeo Jared Rollan (4.0). Belano and Vosotros will advance to the February Monthly Finals. A total of 52 kiddie players took part in the tournament.”

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