Greengard's ChessNinja.com

World Cup 2005 r7.3

| Permalink | 25 comments

Levon Aronian of Armenia is the winner of the 2005 World Chess Cup. He beat Ruslan Ponomariov 2-0 in the rapid tiebreaks to take the title and the $80,000 first prize. (I subtract the 20% "FIDE tax" first. Prize funds should be stated in the amount that goes to the players. Armenian or German taxes are Aronian's problem.) In the first game Ponomariov blundered against Aronian's provocative opening play and was down a piece by move 20. Aronian held easily with black to take the title.

It capped off a tremendous run of fine chess from the young new star. He played at a high level throughout and is unquestionably a deserving winner. He only required tiebreaks twice: against Vallejo Pons in the fourth round and Ponomariov in the final. His tournament performance was over 2800. He never lost a single game at any time control (nor had Pono until today). Aronian will be the top seed in the candidates matches next year.

The 23-year-old Aronian has lived in Germany for the past five years. This result will solidify his place in the top ten. His real trial by fire begins in a month when he goes up against the big dogs at Corus Wijk aan Zee. There was a pre-final interview with him on the FIDE site and here's one from a few months ago at ChessCafe (pdf).

Grischuk and Gelfand saved their worst for last and were demolished by Bacrot and Bareev, respectively. A solid 3rd place for Bacrot, who will also be at Corus. So will Gata Kamsky, who beat Carlsen in a pair of interesting games. As he pointed out to me by email, as against Smirin he was again saved in a R+N endgame. Carlsen will be playing in the Corus B group, but after this event he probably wouldn't be picked to finish last in the A.


Aronian is a strange player. He's not obviously scintillating, nor especially erudite, nor does he give a tour de force of positional chess understanding. He's just an extremely strong practical player, who has a deep well of talent and experience. Much like other Armenian players.

Great win by Aronian.

The rumor is that he calculates like a computer. Perhaps he is a computer cheater. Le the rumors begin.

I am delighted with Kamsky comeback.

the quality of the rapid games is not so good. perhaps even i can win some against these GM's.

I am delighted with Kamsky comeback.

Macuga, what planet are you on? I have been watching Aronian for years now on the ICC and in OTB tournaments, and he has always shown me an extremely high level of positional understanding. Frankly, your comments demonstrate a lack of chess erudition of your own.

Very impressive win for Aronian but the change in the time control is a hard pill to swallow. After he and Pono played such exciting classical games it is hard to accept the rapid games deciding the outcome. Well done Kamsky, what a fighter I hope his Corus tournament goes as well.

Mig, OT---but I am hoping you'll be posting some thoughts about the Fischer stuff showing up on eBay...... maybe it's unremarkable, but I thought it pretty bizarre that this mysterious "wealth" of memorabilia Fischer's claiming has been stolen for so long should suddenly materialize (supposedly gotten from a flea market.)

Aronian's instructive endgame win as White in the Queen's Gambit Declined deserves a place in a chess puzzle book . It's really beautiful! Blocking off the Black King on the queenside using his knight and bishop and marching his king to e5 to finish things off.

"the quality of the rapid games is not so good. perhaps even i can win some against these GM's."

I agree - the very first FIDE KO had a 6-game match at the conclusion, if I'm not mistaken (Khalifman-Akopian). The classical games between the finalists were good ones - both players fought. Need more of those, less of one guy hanging a piece on move 20.

"I am delighted with Kamsky comeback."

It says a lot about Kamsky's latent strength that he got through to the candidate's when he's no where near the top of his game. If he's going to advance in the next roud, he's going to have to work on his openings, especially as White.

I went to the FIDE site (aka Temple of Kirsan), and I couldn't find the dates of the next round. Are there going to be classical matches (as opposed to a big Tournament)?

The very first FIDE KO, at least the one that determined which player would be allowed to play against Karpov, was won by Anand in Groningen. And it was a blitz game against Adams that decided it.
Of the Karpov-Anand match I will say nothing, I hope it is still in recent memory...

Now KC, don't get excited. I said Aronian tends not to demonstrate a positional tour de force, not that he doesn't have good positional understanding. Of course he does, as does any 2700. It is just that his play is less distinct than many others'. He seems to be a very strong practical player, good at finding concrete resources in the position.

I bought a cell phone and the first news I got on internet was that Aronian was the new world champion... oh caramba, he isn't; he is a... What is he?

Looking at the games of Levon Aronian (he effectively outplayed his opponents in each and every game), I get a feeling that he has a potential to continue the Fischer-Karpov-Kasparov tradition of "clearly dominant player" rather than just being "one of the elites"!


I guess Topalov will have some say as to how far Aronian might advance! : )

for a title.

Aronian is

2005 World Chess Cup Champion

all this is leading up to some amazing pre-tournament excitiment for Corus. what a mix of players, what more could one want? i for one am looking forward to Anand-Kamsky after a decade. I think the last time they played was in the PCA qualifiers? at that time, people thought that it was going to be the beginning of a famous rivalry much like the K-K duels of the preceding generation.
as for aronian, i didnt know much about him before, though i heard on ICC that he has an amazing depth of preparation. any one knows if thats true?

Forget Corus, Russian SUPER FINAL is kiking off tommorow! There's one participant there who has a mountain to climb, namely to prove that he still is a force to reckon with...winning will undoubtedly guaranty his moral right to reunification match. But even a modest 2nd will keep him valid.

Zdravstvuitye, Shipov! As always, looking forward to your inimitable coverage of the SuperFinal!

That's Sergey only if he's in England and taken a lot of English classes while he's there.

As for Aronian, it's certainly true that most of the Armenian players have a deserved reputation both for creativity and a relative lack of theoretical preparation. This becomes far more important when you are playing against guys like Anand, Topalov, Gelfand, and Kramnik, who have spent over a decade working on a level of prepation Aronian is only just now starting to discover. Databases make it easier to catch up, of course.

Preparation is rather relative a term. What they percieve to be reading at this level is in fact, very often a plan against them..while the consequences of it go well beyond their imagination for the game is bound to finish sooner or later. But even at higher levels unreachable for ordinary 'la plaguas' the opening goes only as far as permissible..

Here is what Shipov had to say of Aronian:

"I'm most amazed by the unused reserves in the new World Cup winner's play. For example, the Armenian GM is not brilliant in the opening stage, does not have a particularly sharp endgame technique; often ignores positional nuances in his desire for interesting complications. And nevertheless, his play is extremely powerful, quick, and stable. What will happen when Aronian overcomes those drawbacks?"

(on chesspro.ru, (mis)translated by yours truly)

anonymous coward,

The format for the Candidates Cycle is appended to the end of the regulations for the World Cup, here:


There will be 16 participants for the first phase of the Candidates: the winner of the previous World Cup (Kasimjanov), 10 players from the 2005 World Cup, and 5 by rating.

They will play minimatches of 6 games each.

That will product 8 winners, who will go on to the second phase. They will again play minimatches of 6 games, producing 4 winners. These two phases are tentatively shceduled for the Fall of 2006.

In the Fall of 2007, these 4 winners will then join 4 more: "the reigning World Champion" and finishers 2 - 4 from the San Luis tournament in 2005.

They will play a World Championship Tournament similar to the 2005 event in San Luis.

Note the use of the phrase "reigning World Champion." Under current FIDE regulations, it is possible that Topalov couuld accept a challenge from some other 2700 player and lose his title. Then that new World Champion would take Topalov's place in the 2007 tournament.


I find it strange that Kasimjanov, the 2004 champion, gets seeded to the candidate matches eventhough he already lost his title, while Topalov, if he loses his title to "some other 2700 player" gets seeded ... absolutely nowhere!

But then again, it's FIDE, what can you expect...

PS: as far as I know, all 2700+ players save for Ivanchuk, Radjabov, Nisipeanu and Akopian are either invited to the candidates or to the 2007 final. What if Topalov loses, for example, to Shirov, can he take the latter's candidate spot? Or will Shirov's spot be handed down the rating list and Topalov left in the cold?

If so, that's a huge incentive for Topalov to do nothing and just wait for 2007.

Twitter Updates

    Follow me on Twitter



    About this Entry

    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on December 17, 2005 1:50 PM.

    World Cup 2005 r7.2 was the previous entry in this blog.

    2005 Russian Superfinal is the next entry in this blog.

    Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.