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Carlsen Wins Norwegian Ch

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Of course we probably wouldn't be paying much attention to this if the winner weren't a future world championship contender – and current world championship candidate. (Continuing to pretend that the FIDE candidates matches still exist on some ethereal plane.) 15-year-old Magnus Carlsen beat his old mentor Simen Agdestein 2-0 in a rapid playoff after two classical playoff games were drawn. Agdestein was up a piece in the second classical game but a dramatic counterattack in time trouble saved the draw for Carlsen.

This is Carlsen's first national championship win. Last year he lost to Agdestein in a similar playoff. I hope he continues to play in his country's championship. Too many top players stop participation in national championships as soon as they hit the world elite, considering the prizes too small and the potential loss of rating and prestige too great. There are quite a few strong players who have never even bothered to play in their national championships and others stopped participating before they hit their peak years. In Norway's case, other than Agdestein there may just not be enough competition for Carlsen in coming years.

The Russian championship has recovered its luster with a "superfinal" in recent years, bringing top players back to the event. Kramnik played in the last USSR championship in 1991 when he was just 16 and never appeared in the considerably weaker Russian championships, although Morozevich and Svidler made regular appearances. Kasparov had to share first in his USSR championship wins in 1981 and 1988, the only two national championships he played in after early appearances at 15 and 16. He played in and won his first and only Russian championship in 2004, the first of the superfinal events. Kramnik played in his first Russian championship last year. Adams and Short have missed far more UK championships than they've attended. Leko and Polgar haven't seen a Hungarian championship in many years. Indian players start avoiding their grueling championship as soon as they can, it seems. I don't blame them on that one, however. 20 rounds, often with two-a-days.

Top players aren't necessarily busier than their lower-rated compatriots, but they often have better offers on the table. It's often the same story with the Olympiad, although there are only rarely competing events in that case (such as MTel this year).


Who did Kasparov share first place with, Karpov?
I don't think Anand has played in the Indian championships in twenty (does anyone remember the last time) years!
I guess in another 4-5 years, with the way indian chess has been developing, we too can have a "superfinal" and he can play.

Psakhis in 1981, Karpov in 1988.

Kramnik played in the RSFSR (Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic) Championship in 1990, tied for first and placed 2nd in the playoff.

When I looked at the picture of the small silver cup posted on chessbase, my first thought was that Magnus won't be playing such small potatoes much longer.

Mig, don't worry about the Candidates Matches. FIDE will solve this problem (and a potential problem with seeding Topalov if he loses the match to Kramnik) by just combining all of those players along with those already seeded into a swiss event for the final. Problem solved, and this way every one can be unhappy. If we ask nicely, maybe Goichberg can be the organizer.

Naw ! Goichberg won't be organizer if he doesn't get to collect massive entry fees.

Goichberg will send Sam Sloan and Beatrice Marinello to attend to the details. With those two love birds at the tournament maybe we can play some chess back here.

but you know the risk is not worth the small reward. Just look at what happened to Nakamura at the last US Championship. He really got Nuked.

Jeff Sonas explains it correctly. when there is a big spread between the ratings, the current rating system is biased against the higher rated player. the higher rated player loses too many points on a loss and gains too few on a win. so his rating will go down automatically compared to what it should more properly be.

one solution is to change the rating system to better reflect the ratings.

Jeff Sonas also thinks we should rate the rapid and blitz games at a lesser importance. I agree. Magnus got no credit for his 2 wins today. He deserves a point or so for the 2 wins. he must have lost a few points from the 2 regular slow games being drawn. now he wins and gets nothing.

FIDE should really implement Jeff's ideas.

Looking over the cross table for the Norwegian championship, the lowest rated player is 200 points below Magnus. not 1000 points. I hope AF4C makes note of this fact. and even with that 200 points the lower rated players had no opportunity to win. the higher rated player showed their stuff. I hope AF4C makes note of this fact.

I hope the US Championship invites only the very top players. only those with a real chance to win should be included. not the entire world of Wednesday night club players.

The AF4C is not going to organize anymore US championships. The AF4C is fed up with the lack of professionalism from chessplayers and fans alike. Just my $0.02

The AF4C is already organizing the next championship. Much smaller field, big final match (classical chess).

The candidates matches and the rest of the cycle may be handed over to Bessel Kok. Developing...

With the way they've been handing out qualification spots, it can't be much smaller. Maybe 32, if we're lucky.

I don't see how the set-up for a big final match would work; it'd have to be scheduled separately from the swiss portion of the tournament, if the match was of any length--how many GMs do you know that would be able to commit the time for the US Championship...and an extended match afterwards, should they be so lucky?

And if the final takes place some time after the tourney, drumming up interest for the match may not be that easy. Still, it'd be nice if the US title was determined by match play again. Who was the last champion to do so? Marshall?

I have already posted it in another thread, but it is an interesting trivia question.

Which player was world champion before being national champion?

(I will give the answer tomorrow, in case no one replies).


"The AF4C is already organizing the next championship. Much smaller field, big final match (classical chess).

The candidates matches and the rest of the cycle may be handed over to Bessel Kok. Developing..."

Really? Any more details?

I kind of liked the idea of the giant USA-ch tournaments. I think 64 players is far too many, but I think 24-32 in a Swiss tournament would work just fine. Why not spread the wealth? There are too few "name" players already.

Also, Bessel doing the Candidates matches? Has he gone over to the dark side??

ETA: Didn't see the post above, apologies.

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    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on September 21, 2006 9:12 AM.

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