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Youth Movement

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The kids are still all right at the NH Tournament in Amsterdam. After four rounds, the Rising Stars team leads the Experience team 11.5-8.5. Stellwagen for the youngsters and Jussupow for the veterans have 3/4 scores to lead the individual standings. It was looking very good for the kids today, perhaps as good as 4-1, but Smeets fell apart in a superior position against Jussupow and lost when he saw a phantom mate. Instead, 38.b3 looks playable. Karjakin did work against Nikolic for his first win of the event. Nikolic's 11..Qc8 and subsequent configuration of knights on d7 and e6 looks like a novel way to handle a well-worn position. White eventually made his bishops count with some help from a Nikolic blunder on the ever-fateful move 40.

He fared better than his veteran colleague Ljubo Ljubojevic did against Stellwagen. The Yugoslav once again tried to rehab the sprained ankle that is 7..d5 in the Scheveningen. Unfortunately, this move, which would practically be a refutation of 1.e4 if it worked, is unpopular for a reason. However, Ljubo tried it against the same opponent at the same event last year and should have won the game after an insipid reaction by White. This time Black played 9..exd5 and then offered cheesecake to fate with 10..a6, chasing the white bishop but leaving his king in the center. Stellwagen showed he has worked on his aggression in the past year and sacrificed a piece for a very strong attack. Ljubo refused to grovel with 16..Be7 17.Ng7 Kf8 and instead was tied up in knots and blown away after blundering on the very next move with 17..h6. The computer says Black can survive after the inelegant 17..Qd7 18.Qe5 Kd8.

The veterans are poised to beat the whippersnappers with their canes in Sunday's fifth round when they have white in all five games.


Sorry. The 5th round looks to have the "canes" as white playing against the candy canes as black. I know, I know, I said I was sorry.

They don't call him Yussu-POW for nothing, baby. Woo-hoo! Go, old guys.

mecking would make the event a church service... even if I loved to watch andersson on ICC earlier, and even like the way he and his colleagues changed chess, nowadays he just draw games and forfeit tourneys in the middle... he was +4 = 2 in the ordix open, and simply forfeited, resigned, I dont know... whats wrong with him? is he really sick? or just got completely crazy? Im really curious...
but one thing is there: he left his mark in the rising stars event, and his seat is kind of poisoned (as seen by khalifmans performance...)

silvakov wrote: but one thing is there: he left his mark in the rising stars event, and his seat is kind of poisoned (as seen by khalifmans performance...)
In contrast to what? Short draws has been Khalifman's modus operandi for quite a while now. What a dumb invite.

In June, Khalifman won in Bazna with +5 =4 -1.

Mecking suffered from myasthenia gravis in the late 1970s, a chronic neuromuscular disorder that produces weakness and abnormally rapid fatigue of the voluntary muscles. This is the reason he retired from competitive chess at the peak of his chess career (he was number 3 behind Karpov and Korchnoi in the Fide rating list at some point during the mid 1970s). He has has a recovery of sorts from this horrible illness but at great cost to his physical and mental condition. He is still a great blitz player though.

Mecking attributes his recovery from myasthenia gravis due to a miracle, hence his religiosity. Apparently during the early 19080s, at the peak of his illness, his medical doctor had given up hope he would be able to survive. After his recovery he studied to become a catholic priest but would not be ordained due to reasons that are unkown to me.

Khalifman is an embarrassment to professional chess and this tournament. He is a shadow of his former self...what happened to all the wonderful, dyanmic, attacking games he once played? This was the style that won him the FIDE Wch! Now he is too scared to play for anything other than a draw, even against players much weaker than him.

How DO some of you people manage to be so ignorant and so cocksure at the same time?!

For a start, Khalifman is no longer a professional player but mainly a trainer.

Khalifman just won with black...

Seems like the big bear has waken up!
fine game by Khalifman

Finally! Maybe Alex reads this site.

I don't see why it matters if he is "no longer a professional player." He was invited to Amsterdam and I'm sure he is being nicely compensated for playing (doesn't that make him something of a professional?!). Thus, he has an obligation to the tournament and spectators to actually play out games. I'm glad he finally chose to do so, good game.


I would not go as far as stating that Khalifman has an "obligation to the tournament and spectators to actually play out games". The spectators have certainly not paid him any money and I am sure his agreement with the organizers does not include any clause in which he agrees not to play short draws. It would be nice for his reputation if he avoided short draws, since it is likely that this would increase his chances of getting invited to more tournaments. However I believe Khalifman is a rational person, like most people, and thus he must have evaluated the pros and cons of his short draw strategy and came to the conclustion that this is the strategy that given the circunstances he faces maximizes his well-being.

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    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on August 26, 2007 2:21 AM.

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