Chess: In Search of the Best Na­tional Team

The 43rd World Chess Olympiad is un­der­way these days in the Geor­gian Black Sea spa Ba­tumi. The con­test is at­tended by prac­ti­cally all the strong­est chess play­ers of the plant.

Uzbekistan Today (English) - - KALEIDOSCOPE -

Chess Olympiad is a team com­pe­ti­tion. The tour­na­ment is held on the Swiss sys­tem, in 11 rounds, sep­a­rately for men and women. Each team has four play­ers plus one sub­sti­tute.

The for­mer world cham­pion Rus­tam Kasim­janov, one of the youngest in­ter­na­tional grand­mas­ters in the his­tory of chess Nodirbek Ab­dusat­torov, the na­tional cham­pion Nodirbek Yakkub­boyev and oth­ers have been en­listed in the men’s team of Uzbek­istan. The com­po­si­tion seems to be won­der­ful – it is a blend of youth and ex­pe­ri­ence, but our chess play­ers have been not very suc­cess­ful thus far: fol­low­ing eight rounds, they are 34th!

Our men’s squad has se­cured four vic­to­ries, fin­ished two games in a draw and lost two matches. The teams of the United States, Poland and Azer­bai­jan have been lead­ing in the tour­na­ment.

But in the women’s competitions our team has achieved im­pres­sive re­sults. Gul­ruh­be­gim Tahir­janova, Sarvi­noz Kur­ban­bayeva, Irina Gevor­gian, Nodira Nodir­janova be­came, to a cer­tain ex­tent, new­comer dis­cov­er­ies of the Olympiad. In the se­cond round, they beat the fa­vorites of the com­pe­ti­tion – the Rus­sian chess play­ers with a score 2.5:1.5. On the first three boards, our girls were con­tent with a draw, but on the fourth board, Nodira Nodir­janova de­feated Natalia Po­go­nina. Yet the Rus­sians did not hide the fact that they had come to Ba­tumi for the “gold”. Ap­par­ently, some­thing went wrong for them...

In the fourth round, chess play­ers from Uzbek­istan met with Chi­nese coun­ter­parts, a team that in­cluded world cham­pi­ons. Here, the class of the game was ad­mit­tedly higher on the side of our ri­vals, and PRC girls won the match with a score 3:1. After eight rounds, the women’s na­tional team of Uzbek­istan earned five vic­to­ries, lost two matches and made a draw at one game. Our girls are 16th, but they had never had such suc­cess.

Chess Olympiad at­tracts spe­cial at­ten­tion also be­cause the FIDE Congress will be held here, where the del­e­gates will elect the Pres­i­dent of the In­ter­na­tional Chess Fed­er­a­tion for the next four years. The for­mer pres­i­dent, the Rus­sian Kir­san Ilyumzhi­nov, who had steadily led FIDE for the past 20 years, was ac­tu­ally re­moved from the lead­er­ship of this fed­er­a­tion, and sev­eral can­di­dates, in­clud­ing for­mer Deputy Prime Min­is­ter of the Rus­sian Gov­ern­ment Arkady Dvorkovich, are ap­ply­ing for the va­cant po­si­tion.

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