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42nd Chess Olympiad, Baku 2016

The 42nd World Chess Olympiad 2016 was held in Baku (Azerbaijan) 1st-13th September. Free Day: 7th September. Swiss, 11 rounds.
Olympiad Open Final Standings: 1. USA, 2. Ukraine - 20 out of 22 scores, 3. Russia - 18.
United States of America, Olympic Champions: Fabiano Caruana (7 out of 10), Hikaru Nakamura (7.5/11), Wesley So (8.5/10), Samuel Shankland (5.5/8), Ray Robson (3/5). Captain - John Donaldson.

Chess Olympiad 2016: team USA took gold
The Closing Ceremony of the Chess Olympiad 2016: USA took gold and the Hamilton Russell Cup. Photo by Maria Emelianova

Zoltan Almasi, Wesley So, Eugenio Torre
The board three winners: Zoltan Almasi took the silver medal, Wesley So took the gold medal (the best in the US team), Eugenio Torre took the bronze medal. Photo by Maria Emelianova

Open Teams: Russia (Kramnik, Karjakin), United States of America (Caruana, Nakamura, So), China (Wang, Li), Azerbaijan (Mamedyarov), Ukraine (Eljanov), France (Vachier-Lagrave), Poland (Wojtaszek), England (Adams), Hungary (Rapport, Almasi), Netherlands (Giri), India (Harikrishna), Germany (Meier), Norway (Carlsen).

Round 11: USA-Canada 2.5-1.5 (Caruana obtained a huge edge in the Caro-Kann vs Bareev and won; So beat Lesiege; Kovalyov-Nakamura 1/2, from the opening to the ending; Hansen grabbed a pawn vs Shankland and won), Ukraine-Slovenia 3.5-0.5 (Beliavsky had good play in the endgame vs Eljanov, but lost; Volokitin had an extra pawn vs Sebenik and won; Korobov beat Borisek), Russia-Italy 3-1 (Kramnik had an edge vs Vocaturo and won; a sharp fight in Rombaldoni-Tomashevsky 1/2; Grischuk beat Moroni), India-Norway 2-2 (Harikrishna-Carlsen 1/2, the Italian Game, Magnus grabbed a pawn), Peru-England 2-2.

Round 10: Georgia-USA 1.5-2.5 (So took the initiative vs Pantsulaia with 15...b5! and won; Mchedlishvili had a good game and beat Nakamura; Shankland had a clear edge vs Sanikidze and won), Czech Republic-Ukraine 1-3 (Eljanov beat Navara), India-Russia 2-2 (Harikrishna beat Karjakin; Kramnik obtained an advantage vs Adhiban and won), England-Azerbaijan 2.5-1.5, Latvia-Canada 1-3, Norway-Iran 3.5-0.5 (Carlsen-Ghaem Maghami 1-0, Magnus had a strong knight in the centre, 21.Nxf7 was also good).

Round 9: Ukraine-India 2.5-1.5 (Korobov beat Sethuraman), USA-Norway 3-1 (Caruana-Carlsen 1/2, the rare Scandinavian Defence, with equality), Iran-England 2-2, Azerbaijan-Russia 1-3 (Mamedyarov-Karjakin 1/2, Shakhriyar had better chances in the endgame; Kramnik attacked with c4-c5 and got an edge after 18...Qe7 and won vs Radjabov), Netherlands-Czech Republic 1.5-2.5, Hungary-Georgia 1.5-2.5, Faroe Isles-China 0-4 (Ding-Rodgaard 1-0, the French Defence).

Round 8: Russia-USA 2-2 (Karjakin had two bishops vs Caruana, a draw, 34.fxg7+ was better; So beat Nepomniachtchi; Grischuk beat Robson), Georgia-Ukraine 1-3 (Jobava attacked with the strong 17.Bh6! vs Ponomariov and won), England-India 1.5-2.5 (Jones sacrificed the exchange, but Vidit gave it back; Sethuraman grabbed a pawn vs Short and won; Adams had good compensation for the exchange), Azerbaijan-Latvia 2.5-1.5, Norway-Peru 3-1 (Carlsen-Cordova 1-0, Magnus had a slight advantage, 36...Qd1+ was better), China-Hungary 1.5-2.5 (Almasi beat Li Chao in the Nimzo-Indian).

Round 7: India-USA 0.5-3.5 (So beat Vidit; Nakamura had two bishops vs Adhiban and won; Shankland obtained an advantage with the strong 13.h5! vs Sethuraman, but 14.Na4 and 15.Nxd5 were better, after 15.Rxh5= equality, then Sam grabbed 2 pawns and won), Latvia-Netherlands 3-1 (Shirov-Giri 1/2, a quick spectacular draw), Russia-Czech Republic 3.5-0.5 (Nepomniachtchi-Hracek 1-0, the Sicilian Defence like Caruana-Mamedyarov, Shamkir 2016, Ian won again, 7 out of 7!; Karjakin had better chances in the Spanish vs Navara and won), Georgia-Romania 3-1, England-China 3-1 (Adams beat Wang, Short beat Li), Ukraine-Canada 2.5-1.5, Turkey-Norway 1.5-2.5 (Solak-Carlsen 0-1, Magnus played the interesting 8...Na7, had a small edge after 13...e6! and checkmated).

Round 6: India-Netherlands 2.5-1.5, USA-Ukraine 2.5-1.5 (Caruana grabbed a pawn and beat Eljanov. Ponomariov-Nakamura 1/2, a theoretical duel in the Modern Benoni), Czech Republic-Georgia 2-2, Canada-Belarus 2.5-1.5, Germany-Russia 1-3 (Kramnik sacrificed a piece vs Meier with 15.O-O-O! and won), China-Argentina 2.5-1.5, Norway-Philippines 2-2 (Carlsen-Sadorra 1/2).

Round 5: Ukraine-China 2.5-1.5 (Eljanov-Wang 1/2, a typical structure in the Nimzo-Indian, e.g. Botvinnik-Capablanca, AVRO 1938), Netherlands-Belarus 2.5-1.5 (Stupak-Bok 0-1, very original, with the white king on e3 in the middlegame), Serbia-USA 1-3 (Nakamura quickly beat Markus; Ivanisevic-Caruana 1/2, the Bogo-Indian Defence, Fabiano played 12...Ng8 and 13...Qh4 in the opening, grabbed the exchange), Azerbaijan-India 1-3, Russia-Egypt 3-1, Norway-Belgium 3-1 (Carlsen-Winants 1-0, the Bogo-Indian Defence, Luk played like Magnus in the game Vachier-Lagrave - Carlsen, Leuven 2016, but here World Champion preferred 7.Be2, Luk created the Modern Benoni position and seized space on the queenside with 14...b5, 27...b4= was better).

Round 4: Ukraine-Russia 2.5-1.5 (Eljanov-Kramnik 1/2, with equality; Volokitin beat Grischuk; Nepomniachtchi beat Korobov; Tomashevsky lost to Ponomariov, 33.Ng3 or 33.Nb5 was better, with a clear edge to White), India-Cuba 2.5-1.5, USA-Czech Republic 2-2 (Caruana-Navara 1/2, with counterplay; Laznicka grabbed a pawn vs Nakamura, a draw), Romania-Azerbaijan 1-3, China-Italy 3-1, England-Netherlands 0.5-3.5 (Adams-Giri 1/2, with counterplay; Bok beat Jones), Greece-France 2-2 (Bauer sacrificed a piece vs Mastrovasilis, a draw), Australia-Norway 1.5-2.5 (Smerdon-Carlsen 1/2, unclear, Magnus planned to attack on the queenside, but David played 15.b4 and 16. Nd4 with the idea to attack on the kingside with Rg1, if Magnus takes on g2, a draw by perpetual check, 21.Bxh7+ was better).

Round 3: Moldova-Russia 1-3 (Karjakin had better chances in the Berlin endgame vs Bologan, a draw), Cuba-Poland 2.5-1.5, Azerbaijan-Hungary 3-1 (Mamedyarov beat Rapport, with equality in the Slav Defence, but in the ending Shakhriyar had an extra pawn), England-Canada 2.5-1.5 (Adams-Bareev, Michael had an advantage in the French Defence and won; Kovalyov beat Howell in the rook endgame), USA-Argentina 3-1 (Mareco grabbed two pawns vs Nakamura, a draw by perpetual check; Caruana beat Peralta), Brazil-China 1-3, Germany-Ukraine 1.5-2.5, France-Spain 2-2, Romania-Norway 2.5-1.5 (Lupulescu-Carlsen 1/2, Constantin had a slight edge, Magnus defended on the kingside, in the endgame won two pawns, but a draw).

Round 2: Russia-Turkmenistan 4-0 (A nice win by Nepomniachtchi, Kramnik attacked on the queenside and won), Scotland-USA 0.5-3.5 (McNab drew with Shankland, Greet-Caruana 0-1, a sharp fight), China-Belgium 3.5-0.5, FYROM-Azerbaijan 0-4, Albania-Ukraine 0.5-3.5, Indonesia-England 1.5-2.5, Ireland-France 0.5-3.5 (Baburin vs Vachier-Lagrave, the Gruenfeld Defence, a draw in the endgame), Norway-Bangladesh 2.5-1.5 (Carlsen beat Hossain 1.e3, Magnus attacked on the kingside with pawns).

The playing hall, World Chess Olympiad 2016, Baku, round 1
The playing hall, World Chess Olympiad 2016, Baku, round 1. Photo by Maria Emelianova

Round 1 (2nd September): Nigeria-Russia 0-4, USA-Andorra 4-0 (So beat De La Riva Aguado in the pawn endgame), Kosovo-China 0-4, Azerbaijan-Zimbabwe 4-0, Ukraine-Jordan 4-0, Iraq-Poland 0-4, France-Guatemala 4-0, Bolivia-India 0-4, Hungary-Japan 3.5-0.5 (Nanjo drew with Almasi), England-IBCA 4-0 (Howell beat Meshkov in the endgame), Bulgaria-Sudan 2-2.

Olympiad Women Teams: China (Hou Yifan), Russia (Kosteniuk), Ukraine (Muzychuks), Georgia (Dzagnidze), India (Harika), USA (Krush), Hungary (Hoang), Germany (Paehtz).
Olympiad Women Final Standings: 1. China - 20 out of 22 scores, 2. Poland, 3. Ukraine - 17.
China, Olympic Champions: Hou Yifan (5.5 out of 8), Ju Wenjun (7.5/11), Zhao Xue (3.5/6), Tan Zhongyi (9/11), Guo Qi (5.5/8). Captain - Yu Shaoteng.

Women: China took gold and the Vera Menchik Cup
The Closing Ceremony of the Chess Olympiad 2016, Women: China took gold and the Vera Menchik Cup. Photo by Maria Emelianova

Guo Qi of China, Chess Olympiad 2016
Guo Qi of China took the gold medal for board 5. Photo by Eteri Kublashvili

Round 11: China-Russia 2.5-1.5 (Hou-Kosteniuk 1/2, with equality; Pogonina obtained a big edge vs Guo and won; Tan beat Goryachkina; Ju beat Gunina), Hungary-Poland 0.5-3.5, Ukraine-Bulgaria 3-1, USA-India 2-2.

Round 10: Poland-China 1.5-2.5, India-Ukraine 2-2, Russia-Georgia 2.5-1.5, Mongolia-USA 2-2, France-Hungary 1.5-2.5, Bulgaria-Germany 2.5-1.5.

Round 9: USA-China 1.5-2.5, Israel-Poland 0.5-3.5, Vietnam-Russia 1.5-2.5, Ukraine-Azerbaijan 3.5-0.5, Hungary-Bulgaria 2-2.

Round 8: Russia-USA 1.5-2.5 (Kosteniuk obtained an advantage with the elegant 16.Na7! vs Krush, but lost), Poland-Netherlands 2.5-1.5, Hungary-Ukraine 2-2 (Lazarne Vajda beat Mariya Muzychuk), China-Azerbaijan 3.5-0.5 (Hou Yifan beat Mamedjarova).

Anna Muzychuk against Hou Yifan
Anna Muzychuk against Hou Yifan, Round 7, a draw. Photo by Maria Emelianova

Round 7: Russia-Poland 2-2, China-Ukraine 2.5-1.5, USA-Romania 2.5-1.5, Azerbaijan-India 2.5-1.5, Netherlands-Georgia 2.5-1.5.

Round 6: Ukraine-Russia 2-2, Romania-China 2-2, Kazakhstan-Hungary 2-2, Georgia-Azerbaijan 2-2, Poland-Vietnam 3-1.

Round 5: Serbia-Ukraine 1-3, Russia-Kazakhstan 3.5-0.5, Israel-Romania 1.5-2.5, Vietnam-India 2-2, China-Italy 3-1 (Hou Yifan quickly beat Zimina).

The match Latvia vs China, Chess Olympiad 2016
The match Latvia vs China, China won, but Minister of Finance of the Republic of Latvia Dana Reizniece-Ozola beat Women's World Champion Hou Yifan. Photo by Paul Truong

Round 4: Hungary-Russia 1.5-2.5 (Pogonina beat Gara), Ukraine-France 3.5-0.5 (Anna Muzychuk won quickly), India-Israel 2-2, Azerbaijan-Romania 2-2, Latvia-China 1.5-2.5 (Reizniece-Ozola beat Hou Yifan).

Round 3: China-Vietnam 2-2 (Hou Yifan beat Pham, Nguyen Thi Mai Hung checkmated Zhao Xue), Russia-Uzbekistan 3-1, Cuba-Lithuania 1.5-2.5, Poland-Azerbaijan 1.5-2.5, USA-Ukraine 1.5-2.5 (Ushenina beat Nemcova).

Laura Unuk of Slovenia Constanza Bernal Hurtado of Chile Veronika Steinunn Magnusdottir of Iceland
Laura Unuk of Slovenia, Constanza Bernal Hurtado of Chile and Veronika Steinunn Magnusdottir of Iceland. Photos by David Llada

Round 2: Montenegro-China 0-4, Ukraine-Moldova 3.5-0.5, Ecuador-Russia 0-4, Azerbaijan-Mexico 2.5-1.5, Georgia-Philippines 1.5-2.5 (Fronda beat Khotenashvili, Secopito beat Melia).

Round 1: China-Luxembourg 4-0, Portugal-Ukraine 0-4, Russia-Scotland 4-0, ICCD-Georgia 0-4.

Site: http://www.bakuchessolympiad.com/, http://www.chess-results.com/tnr232875

41st World Chess Olympiad, Tromso 2014

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