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HomeChessEuropean Crew Championship Rounds 6-7: Carlsen Survives Thriller

European Crew Championship Rounds 6-7: Carlsen Survives Thriller


World number-one Magnus Carlsen escaped with simply two minor items towards Danish GM Jonas Bjerre‘s queen to assist struggling Norway to a second win in a row, whereas top-seed Azerbaijan is in freefall, symbolized by GM Teimour Radjabov shedding in 19 strikes.

The leaders with two rounds of the 2023 European Crew Chess Championship to go are Germany, England, and now Serbia, whereas within the Girls’s part Bulgaria has overwhelmed and overtaken France and Azerbaijan.  

Spherical eight begins on Sunday, November 19, at 9:15 a.m. ET/15:15 CET/7:45 p.m. IST.


Open: Keymer Into Prime 15 As Title Battle Rages

Germany went into spherical six of the European Crew Championship as the only real chief, and Keymer, who celebrated his Nineteenth birthday by climbing to world number-17, continued that climb by grinding out an 85-move win towards GM Richard Rapport—the primary sport Romania had misplaced in Budva.

What’s workforce captain GM Jan Gustafsson feeding Keymer? Photograph: Deutscher Schachbund.

The win took Keymer as much as world number-14, however it might have been a lot shorter, and sweeter, if he’d discovered the gorgeous knockout blow 22.Nd4!!. “You see one transfer and also you end the sport instantly!” he stated wistfully the subsequent day. 

That wasn’t sufficient for workforce victory, nonetheless, since GM Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu, who for the earlier 4 European Crew Championships had led the German workforce, levelled the rating for Romania by beating GM Dmitrij Kollars. The 47-year-old talked about how new-found sponsorship was set to make Romania a chess powerhouse, although he had some regrets that it had come too late for his profession. His feedback sparked some debate on-line.

That workforce draw for Germany allowed England to catch them within the lead with a 3.5-0.5 demolition of the Netherlands. GM Nikita Vitiugov led the best way with a King’s Indian that went like a dream when he acquired to interrupt by means of with 19…f4! towards GM Jorden van Foreest.

GMs David Howell and Luke McShane floor out wins to finish the rout. 

To this point, so good for Vitiugov on his England debut. Photograph: Mark Livshitz/ECU.

That meant Germany and England met in spherical seven, however after they performed out 4 tense attracts, it gave a workforce an opportunity to catch them. Serbia, whose new recruits GMs Alexandr Predke and Alexey Sarana have each carried out above 2800, seized the chance, with Sarana scoring the one win, over GM Bogdan-Daniel Deac. As soon as once more Sarana is demonstrating that he is one of many world’s finest gamers exactly when he has the white items.

France, Armenia, and Greece all gained in spherical seven to maneuver to inside a single level with two rounds to go.   

Spherical 7 Standings (Prime 9)













Rk. Seed FED Crew Video games + = Match Factors TB1 TB2
1 3 Germany 7 4 3 0 11 137.5 16.5
2 4 England 7 4 3 0 11 130 17
3 10 Serbia 7 5 1 1 11 127 18.5
4 7 France 7 5 0 2 10 115 18
5 5 Armenia 7 4 2 1 10 112.5 15.5
6 17 Greece 7 5 0 2 10 102.5 16.5
7 2 Romania 7 3 3 1 9 114.5 15.5
8 14 Croatia 7 3 3 1 9 110 15
9 9 Netherlands 7 3 3 1 9 106.5 15

Two groups who needs to be on that record, in keeping with seedings, are Norway and, above all, Azerbaijan.

Carlsen Pulls Off Nice Escape; Radjabov Surprised

Azerbaijan, with Radjabov and GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov on the highest boards, had been the clear favorites to win the 2023 title, however have failed to tug out of the dying spiral that started after they misplaced to Denmark in spherical one. A loss to Croatia adopted, with Radjabov overwhelmed by GM Ivan Saric, however that was nothing in comparison with what adopted in spherical six, when Radjabov discovered himself resigning towards 23-year-old Greek GM Nikolas Theodorou on transfer 19—whereas Theodorou nonetheless had one hour and 28 minutes on his clock.  

It isn’t typically you get to demolish a participant as sturdy as Radjabov. Photograph: Mark Livshitz/ECU.

That shocker is our first Sport of the Day, with evaluation by GM Rafael Leitao.

As soon as once more that loss was maximally painful for Azerbaijan, because the remaining video games had been drawn. A 3-1 defeat by the hands of Moldova within the subsequent spherical and it is laborious to think about the favorites for such an occasion ever having performed as badly. 

Carlsen has performed each spherical regardless of his opponents’ scores which means every sport was excessive danger, low reward. Photograph: Mark Livshitz/ECU.

Eighth-seed Norway has additionally underperformed, on paper, however their pre-tournament seeding was very a lot based mostly on having the world number-one on prime board. It is laborious to hold a workforce, and Carlsen’s 5.5/7 has not been smooth-sailing. 

GM Valentin Dragnev was a transfer or two away from making a sensation, whereas Carlsen’s sport towards 19-year-old Bjerre was a wild experience. At first every thing went the previous world champion’s method, with a sacrifice of the alternate (a rook for a knight on c3), as sturdy because it was pure.

Carlsen confessed, nonetheless, that he briefly went on to lose the plot: “I simply had one extremely weak section there the place by some means I didn’t belief my instincts. I had so many good decisions and I used to be simply over-thinking.”

That wobble was mixed with some impressed play by Bjerre, who discovered the sensible 33.Nf5!!.

The massive risk is Qc3+, hitting the rook on b2 and the king on f6, and there are not any joyful options for Black. Carlsen confirmed GM Vladimir Fedoseev‘s hunch when he joined GM Alojzije Jankovic on the dwell broadcast: “I believed a minimum of I may give the queen, and I needs to be superb, however I’d missed Nf5 utterly. Now I’m most likely… not most likely, now I feel I’m misplaced!”

Carlsen discovered himself with simply two minor items for a queen, however he felt his opponent made a “conceptual” mistake simply earlier than the time management, and shortly the world number-one had discovered a path to security. That sport is our second Sport of the Day. 

Requested if it had been a tricky day, Carlsen replied: “No, we’ve gained two matches in a row now, in order that’s good. Clearly for me it was not an ideal sport, however a minimum of I saved it and it gained us the match, so nonetheless good!” A win for 21-year-old IM Tor Fredrik Kaasen on the underside board gave Norway a 2.5-1.5 win over Denmark and now, for the primary time in 18 classical video games, Carlsen could lastly play an opponent rated 2700 once more. Until both participant is rested, he is set to tackle his world championship second, Dutch GM Jorden van Foreest in spherical eight.

Girls’s Part: Bulgaria Leapfrogs France And Azerbaijan

Bulgaria is led by former Girls’s World Champion Antoaneta Stefanova. Photograph: Mark Livshitz/ECU.

The ladies’s competitors had appeared like a two-horse race, till Bulgaria beat each horses, defeating Azerbaijan 2.5-1.5 in spherical six, then France 3-1 in spherical seven. On each events 20-year-old 2023 Girls’s World Cup runner-up IM Nurgyul Salimova notched up some extent, as a part of a three-game successful streak. 

That left Bulgaria some extent away from France and Azerbaijan, whereas Poland (who beat Germany) and Greece are solely one other level off the tempo. 

Spherical 7 Girls’s Standings (Prime 9)













Rk. Seed FED Crew Video games + = Match Factors TB1 TB2
1 5 Bulgaria 7 5 2 0 12 141.5 18
2 6 France 7 5 1 1 11 144 19.5
3 2 Azerbaijan 7 5 1 1 11 134 17
4 19 Greece 7 4 2 1 10 111.5 16.5
5 8 Poland 7 5 0 2 10 99.5 15.5
6 3 Germany 7 4 1 2 9 109 16
7 15 Serbia 7 4 1 2 9 106.5 15
8 7 Armenia 7 4 1 2 9 105.5 16.5
9 1 Georgia 7 4 1 2 9 105.5 16

Nineteenth-seed Greece continues to dazzle, with 23-year-old IM Stavroula Tsolakidou main the best way. 

Tsolakidou the truth is appears to have met the necessities for a seven-game grandmaster norm—three of these, plus a 2500-rating, are required to achieve the grandmaster title. It isn’t simply the outcomes, however the video games which were massively spectacular, with the win over GM Hoang Thanh Trang an ideal punishment of 1 inaccuracy by her opponent. 

The rostrum is inside touching distance for Greece, however we’ve two intense rounds to go in each sections, with no runaway leaders and every thing to play for. 

GM Laurent Fressinet’s France are only one level behind the leaders. Photograph: Mark Livshitz/ECU.


The 2023 European Crew Chess Championship is a nine-round workforce match going down in Budva, Montenegro, throughout November 11-20. All of the European chess federations can subject a workforce within the Open and Girls’s sections; matches are performed on 4 boards. The time management is classical, with 90 minutes for 40 strikes, half-hour to the tip of the sport, and a 30-second increment from transfer one. 


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