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Nikita Vitiugov wins Gibraltar after tiebreak

Nikita Vitiugov won the tournament in Gibraltar

Nikita Vitiugov won the traditional Gibraltar Chess Festival that took place on 21-31 January, 2013, after defeating Nigel Short in a dramatic tiebreak in the last round.

Seven players from the 2700 club were the headliners in this year’s event, but only three players got to the final round in the shared first place with 7.5/9 points. Nikita Vitiugov was paired against Maxime Vachier-Lagrave. They played a very tactical line, where probably most of the moves where part of their preparation; the game ended in a 36 moves draw when the Russian started to give perpetual check to the Black king.

In the second board, the other leader Nigel Short, played against the Czech star David Navara. They played a quite interesting game that, however, was never far from equality. They signed the peace treaty at move 39. So, until this point, we already knew that there would be a tie-break, because nobody was able to make more than 8 points, and three players already had gotten this score.

The third player to get to 8 points was the Indian Chanda Sandipan, who took advantage of Le Quang Liem‘s suspicious handling of the opening. The Indian already had a big advantage by move 20 due to the weak position of the White king in the center. The Vietnamese surrendered at move 37 when his opponent threatened to give mate or take his queen.

The English GM Michael Adams tried to squeeze a victory in his game against Kiril Georgiev in order to get to the tie-break, but the Bulgarian defended correctly. The draw was achieved by move 68.

Replay the games with computer analysis

The tie-breaks

In the knockout matches for the title, Vitiugov was paired against Sandipan and Short against Vachier-Lagrave. Both Vitiugov and Short won their first games with black and could advance to the final encounter without much trouble.

The final match between Nigel Short and Nikita Vitiugov started around 18:45 local time. These games would decide who takes home the first prize of £20,000 and who keeps the shared 2nd-4th place, so the stakes were quite high. In the first game, the Russian GM managed to win impressively, showing great technique with almost no time on his clock. The second game was very tense, but Nikita managed to keep cool and draw to get the sole first place in this strong event.

This very tough open left a lot of strong players just a half point behind the opportunity to go for the very coveted first prize. No less than 9 players finished the 10 rounds with 7.5 points. Some of them probably finished the tournament disappointed, given their status in the world of chess. Among them we can mention Vassily Ivanchuk, who arrived as the first seed; Gata Kamsky, who is used to getting good results in open tournaments in the US; David Navara, who arrived in the last minute with high expectations; and Michael Adams, who seemed to be in good form after his performance in the London Chess Classic.

Others were probably happy with their result, despite the fact that they didn’t get to the very top. Ivan Salgado Lopez showed stable chess and had a lot of fans cheering for him from neighbor Spain. Ruben Felgaer from Argentina played solidly and managed to avoid losing a single game, while at the same time gaining 13 rating points. The Dutch IM Stefan Kuipers also achieved a good result, he got 7 points after beating the legend Jaan Ehlvest in the last round.

Nigel Short against Nikita Vitiugov in the tie-break final

The Women’s Prize

The Chinese GM Zhao Xue won the top female prize of £12,000. She drew her game after nearly five hours of play against Vassily Ivanchuk and achieved a score of 7½/10. The 2nd-4th places were shared by the runner-up of the World Cup 2012 Antoaneta Stefanova, the Russian Valentina Gunina and the Ukrainian Anna Muzychuk, who all got 7/10 points.

Ju Wenjun and Zhao Xue

Anna Muzychuk

Photos by Zeljka Malobabic

Final Standings

Rk. Name FED Pts.
1 GM Vitiugov Nikita RUS 8
2 GM Vachier-Lagrave Maxime FRA 8
3 GM Sandipan Chanda IND 8
4 GM Short Nigel D ENG 8
5 GM Georgiev Kiril BUL 7.5
6 GM Adams Michael ENG 7.5
7 GM Navara David CZE 7.5
8 GM Kamsky Gata USA 7.5
9 GM Ivanchuk Vassily UKR 7.5
10 GM Yu Yangyi CHN 7.5
11 GM Salgado Lopez Ivan ESP 7.5
12 GM Fridman Daniel GER 7.5
13 GM Zhao Xue CHN 7.5
14 GM Le Quang Liem VIE 7
15 GM Jones Gawain C B ENG 7
16 GM Felgaer Ruben ARG 7
17 GM Wojtaszek Radoslaw POL 7
18 GM Shirov Alexei LAT 7
19 GM Stefanova Antoaneta BUL 7
20 IM Gunina Valentina RUS 7
21 GM Muzychuk Anna SLO 7
22 GM Sutovsky Emil ISR 7
23 GM Gallagher Joseph G. SUI 7
24 GM Bartel Mateusz POL 7
25 IM Kuipers Stefan NED 7
26 GM Iturrizaga Eduardo VEN 6.5
27 IM Oparin Grigoriy RUS 6.5
28 GM Dzagnidze Nana GEO 6.5
29 GM Swiercz Dariusz POL 6.5
30 IM Ibarra Jerez Jose Carlos ESP 6.5
31 IM Larino Nieto David ESP 6.5
32 IM Docx Stefan BEL 6.5
33 GM Jakubiec Artur POL 6.5
34 GM Kulaots Kaido EST 6.5
35 GM Kanep Meelis EST 6.5
36 GM Gordon Stephen J ENG 6.5
37 IM Muzychuk Mariya UKR 6.5
38 GM Hoang Thanh Trang HUN 6.5
39 GM Cramling Pia SWE 6.5
40 IM Paehtz Elisabeth GER 6.5
41 GM Harika Dronavalli IND 6.5
42 GM Vazquez Igarza Renier ESP 6.5
43 IM Tania Sachdev IND 6.5
44 Janev Pavel BUL 6.5
45 GM Maze Sebastien FRA 6.5
46 FM Gromovs Sergejs ITA 6.5
47 IM Omar Noaman UAE 6.5
48 IM Houska Jovanka ENG 6.5
49 GM Tkachiev Vladislav FRA 6
50 GM Ehlvest Jaan USA 6
51 GM Al-Sayed Mohammed QAT 6
52 IM Teran Alvarez Ismael ESP 6
53 IM Aloma Vidal Robert ESP 6
54 IM Melia Salome GEO 6
55 GM Cmilyte Viktorija LTU 6
56 WGM Ju Wenjun CHN 6
57 IM Kjartansson Gudmundur ISL 6
58 FM Fenollar Jorda Manuel ESP 6
59 GM Womacka Mathias GER 6
60 GM Akesson Ralf SWE 6
61 GM David Alberto ITA 6
62 GM Mastrovasilis Athanasios GRE 6
63 IM Nezad Husein Aziz QAT 6
64 IM Cernousek Lukas CZE 6
65 FM Kvisvik Brede NOR 6
66 IM Jones Richard S. WLS 6
67 GM Salem A.R. Saleh UAE 6
68 IM Poetsch Hagen GER 6
69 GM Bellon Lopez Juan Manuel ESP 6
70 IM Godard Maxence FRA 6
71 FM Ortega Ruiz Jose Miguel ESP 6
72 IM Milliet Sophie FRA 6
73 GM Arakhamia-Grant Ketevan SCO 6
74 IM Palencia Wilson COL 6
75 FM Sanchez Ibern Marc ESP 6
76 WGM Vojinovic Jovana MNE 6
77 FM Moreno Tejera Emilio ESP 6
78 GM Jussupow Artur GER 5.5
79 Pinho Paulo POR 5.5
80 FM Georgiadis Nico SUI 5.5
81 IM Trent Lawrence ENG 5.5
82 FM Arvola Benjamin NOR 5.5
83 IM Zhou Yang-Fan ENG 5.5
84 IM Kantorik Marian SVK 5.5
85 WGM Dolzhikova Olga NOR 5.5
86 IM Karavade Eesha IND 5.5
87 IM Zatonskih Anna USA 5.5
88 FM Montero Melendez Rafael ESP 5.5
89 IM Roser Kevin FRA 5.5
90 Tari Aryan NOR 5.5
91 Gaehwiler Gabriel SUI 5.5
92 Kvisla Johannes Luangtep NOR 5.5
93 IM Telljohann Sven GER 5.5
94 Lind Jan-Olof SWE 5.5
95 IM Kurmann Oliver SUI 5.5
96 FM Storey Charles H ENG 5.5
97 WGM Rudolf Anna HUN 5.5
98 IM Adrian Claude FRA 5.5
99 FM Bergstrom Rolf SWE 5.5
100 IM Dukaczewski Piotr POL 5.5
Spence David J ENG 5.5
102 Dasaolu Rotimi NGR 5.5
103 GM Tischbierek Raj GER 5
104 FM De Haan Eric NED 5
105 Sanchez Botella Luis Javier ESP 5
106 FM Vyparina Matej SVK 5
Tscharotschkin Michael GER 5
108 Zygouris Hristos GRE 5
109 O`toole George E ENG 5
110 Novoa Fernando ARG 5
111 FM Villuendas Valero Adrian ESP 5
112 Amato Andrea ITA 5
113 Valgmae Toomas EST 5
114 Hommerson Paul NED 5
115 FM Nuri Kambez SUI 5
116 IM Lederman Leon ISR 5
117 IM Wemmers Xander NED 5
118 FM Kriebel Tadeas CZE 5
119 Nafri Khalil MAR 5
120 Veltkamp Gerben NED 5
121 Seyfried Claus GER 5
122 CM Osuna Vega Enrique ESP 5
123 Allor Chukwuka NGR 5
124 Onabogun Kolade NGR 5
125 Bird Andrew AUS 5
FM Pena Riasco Alexander COL 5
127 IM Quillan Gary ENG 5
128 Nazarenus Moritz GER 5
129 FM Scharrer Patrick ITA 5
130 Linhart Wolfgang GER 5
131 Ferrante Marco ITA 5
132 IM Piasetski Leon CAN 5
133 Rujan Rodel-Marinel ROU 5
134 Olhovik Andrei BLR 5
135 Mckenna Jason P ENG 5
136 FM Lyell Mark ENG 5
137 Chapman Terry P D ENG 4.5
138 Semprun Martinez Fernando ESP 4.5
139 Diaz Velandia Jose Manuel VEN 4.5
140 Byron Alan M ENG 4.5
141 Lindsoe Fredrik Aunan NOR 4.5
142 FM Tate Alan SCO 4.5
143 Lipecki Alexander SUI 4.5
144 Fairbairn Stephen CAN 4.5
145 Becham Khalid MAR 4.5
146 Uran Bermudez Oliver Kevin VEN 4.5
147 FM Garcia Jimenez Francisco Javi ESP 4.5
148 FM Smith Andrew Philip IRL 4.5
149 IM Sanchez Castillo Sarai VEN 4.5
150 Lee Kai Jie Edward SIN 4.5
151 Suez-Panama Gilles FRA 4.5
152 FM Loew Gerald GER 4.5
153 WFM Grigoryan Meri ENG 4.5
154 Valhondo Morales Ruben ESP 4.5
155 Jameson David WLS 4.5
156 FM Stockmann Michael GER 4.5
Ungureanu Sandu ROU 4.5
158 CM Walton Alan J ENG 4.5
Weber Francois ESP 4.5
160 Marttala Thomas SWE 4.5
161 Bryn Askild NOR 4.5
162 Karlsson Jorgen SWE 4.5
163 Burrows Martin P ENG 4.5
Hackner Oskar A ENG 4.5
165 Samu Sorin-Mihai ROU 4.5
166 Thornton John D WLS 4.5
167 Gieritz Dietmar GER 4.5
168 Hutton Jack USA 4.5
169 Christiansmeier Sven GER 4.5
170 Tuchtfeld Juergen GER 4.5
171 Ramdewar Ishan ENG 4.5
172 Herbold Manfred GER 4.5
173 FM Dittmar Peter GER 4
174 FM Forsaa Espen NOR 4
175 Vinas Guerrero Carlos A. ESP 4
176 Jaunooby Ali R ENG 4
177 Meyer Kai-Christian GER 4
178 Spanton Tim R ENG 4
179 Pribyl Jaroslav CZE 4
180 Obiamiwe Paul NGR 4
181 Compton Alistair NZL 4
182 Wiedersich Jens GER 4
183 Havik Victor NOR 4
184 Baeza Escudero Javier ESP 4
185 Kozarcanin Sead CRO 4
186 CM Reuben Stewart ENG 4
187 FM Kandic Milan SRB 4
188 Cawley Paul F ENG 4
189 Hamer Martyn ENG 4
190 Denisik Sergei BLR 4
191 Campos Calvo-Sotelo Juan ESP 4
192 Freuler Roman SUI 4
193 FM Baert Andy BEL 3.5
194 Van Kemenade Rudy WLS 3.5
195 CM Mueller Hans-Dieter GER 3.5
196 Skutta Bernd  Dr. GER 3.5
197 Nwachukwu Chino NGR 3.5
198 Canonne Antoine FRA 3.5
199 Iasman Inna FRA 3.5
200 Stewart Ashley ENG 3.5
201 Kang Leo J USA 3.5
202 Byrn Carsten DEN 3.5
203 Agbabishvili Lali CAN 3.5
204 Zanetti Bruno SUI 3.5
Boesch Heinz GER 3.5
Dimitrijevic Dragan ITA 3.5
207 Georgieva Emilia BUL 3.5
208 Reppen Ellisiv NOR 3.5
209 Rios Gonzalez Jose Antonio ESP 3.5
210 WFM Reid Vaness AUS 3.5
211 Othman Mustapha NGR 3.5
212 Viana Eduardo Escudeiro POR 3.5
213 Openshaw David K ENG 3.5
214 Skrabakova Katarina SVK 3.5
215 Cebada Benitez Fernando ESP 3.5
216 CM Urbina Perez Juan Antonio ESP 3
217 Tranter Stephen ENG 3
218 Guerrero Romero Antonio ESP 3
219 Whatley Stephen A J ENG 3
220 Lochte Szilvia HUN 3
221 Sielicki Tomasz POL 3
222 Neumanova Monika CZE 3
223 Diaz Montenegro Ignacio ESP 3
224 George Lolomari Erekosima NGR 3
225 Sevillano Leal Julio ESP 3
226 Iglesias Fernandez Luis ESP 3
227 Henrichsen Jens DEN 3
228 Dennis Nigel W ENG 3
229 Piovar Jaroslav SVK 3
230 Chidi Lovinia Sylvia GER 2.5
231 Candano Gonzalez Alvaro ESP 2.5
232 Villa Armenta Enrique ESP 2.5
233 Berggren Klas SWE 2.5
234 Kazmierczak Ewa POL 2.5
235 Wilson Matthew R ENG 2.5
236 Collins Andrew ENG 2.5
237 Taus Martin CZE 2
238 Savage Neil RSA 2
239 Diaz Gallego Saul ESP 2
240 Williamson Ian ENG 2
241 Colompar Ladislau-Alexandru ROU 2
242 Aerni Andreas SUI 1.5
243 Rydell Marten SWE 1.5
244 Scholl Alois GER 1.5
245 Garcia Lechugo Francisco ESP 1
246 Kuenitz Klaus GER 1
247 Tveten Per NOR 1

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