Exciting tourney in Azerbaijan!

FIDE Grand Prix 2008

There is finally a top-level tournament that has an interesting collection of players. The first FIDE Grand Prix tournament will kick off in Azerbaijan with a very diverse field. Professional chess becomes a bit routine when you get the same permutation of players like Anand, Kramnik, Topalov, Morozevich, Svidler (and a couple of other players) in every tournament. This one has some of those common names (Svidler), but the games should be very interesting.

Another nice feature of this tournament is the “no draw offer” rule.

Draws: Players will not be allowed to offer draws directly to their opponents. Any draw claim will be permitted only through the Chief Arbiter in the following cases:

  • a triple-repetition of the position,
  • a perpetual check,
  • in theoretically drawn position and
  • Applying the 50 move rule
  • The Chief Arbiter may consult with the Technical Adviser before accepting any claim by players for a draw. The Technical Adviser must be a Grandmaster, rated at least 2500, who has held the title of Grandmaster for at least ten years and is an active player as defined by the rating system. The Chief Arbiter is the only authority who can acknowledge the final result of the game in these cases.

    # Player Nat. Rating
    01 Magnus Carlsen NOR 2765
    02 Shakhriyar Mamedyarov AZE 2752
    03 Teimour Radjabov AZE 2751
    04 Peter Svidler RUS 2746
    05 Sergey Karjakin UKR 2732
    06 Michael Adams ENG 2729
    07 Gata Kamsky USA 2726
    08 Alexander Grischuk RUS 2716
    09 Etienne Bacrot FRA 2705
    10 Ivan Cheparinov BUL 2696
    11 Wang Yue CHN 2689
    12 Ernesto Inarkiev RUS 2684
    13 Vugar Gashimov AZE 2679
    14 David Navara CZE 2672

    Needs some more regional diversity! Would like to see some players in Latin America, Middle East, Asia, Africa (!) However these regions have to handle their business! 8)

    Chess Base: https://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail.asp?newsid=4576
    Official Site: https://baku2008.fide.com/


    1. This one is likely to go Carlsen’s way. I put all my money on him. Maybe Mame or Svidler will carry the day if Carlsen falters.

    2. i dont think carlsen will win this one, this is his tourney to lose though. radjabov will do very well here maybe even win the tourney.

    3. I stand by my prediction. Kamsky has great will to survive…..but Carlsen’s will lies more in winning than surviving. Anyway let’s wait and see. They are all monsters and any one of them can win!

    4. Anyone see what Kamsky did to Inarkiev? Beautiful mating attack!! The Russian sacrificed a piece for four pawns, but the extra would come back to haunt Ernesto. Kamsky unfurled a vicious barrage on the white king. This is Kamsky of the early 90s again!!

      Inarkiev,E (2684) – Kamsky,G (2726) [C95]
      FIDE GP Baku AZE (1), 21.04.2008

      1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 0-0 9.h3 Nb8 10.d4 Nbd7 11.Nbd2 Bb7 12.Bc2 Re8 13.Nf1 Bf8 14.Ng3 g6 15.a4 c5 16.d5 c4 17.Bg5 h6 18.Be3 Nc5 19.Qd2 h5 20.Bg5 Be7 21.Ra3 Rb8 22.Kh1 Nh7 23.Be3 Bf6 24.Rea1 Bg7 25.Qe2 Bc8 26.Nf1 f5 27.axb5 axb5 28.exf5 gxf5 29.Ng3 Nd3 30.Nxh5 f4 31.Nxg7 Kxg7 32.Ba7 Rb7 33.Bxd3 cxd3 34.Qxd3 e4 35.Bd4+ Nf6 36.Qd1 exf3 37.Qxf3 Kg6 38.Qxf4 Nh5 39.Qh2 Rbe7 40.Qg1 Re2 41.Ra8 Qh4 42.Rb8 Kh6 43.Rb6 Bxh3 44.Rxd6+ Kh7 45.g3 Bg2+ 46.Kxg2 Qxg3+ 47.Kf1 Qh3+ 48.Qg2 Ng3+ 0-1 (See Game)

      Round One

      Video by FIDE.com.


    5. Video Reports

      Round 3: https://baku2008.fide.com/round-3-5-decisive-games.html
      Round 4: https://baku2008.fide.com/round-4-adams-wang-yue-and-mamedyarov-win.html
      Round 5: https://baku2008.fide.com/round-5-wang-yue-and-grischuk-share-lead.html

      Wang Yue is tied for the lead with Alexander Grischuk after beating Sergey Karjakin. I have been on blogs and people claim the Chinese are overrated. Although I accepted the strength of the Chinese since the early 90s, I suppose there is no further question as to their strength. Local heroes Teimour Radjabov and Vugar Gashimov are tied with Gata Kamsky and Michael Adams on +1. Today is a rest day.

      Ivan Cheparinov (Bulgaria) vs. Wang Yue (China)

      Ivan Cheparinov (Bulgaria) vs. Wang Yue (China) in round #4.
      Photo by FIDE.com

    6. I would imagine that The Chess Drum audience likes slashing games. Today Carlsen beat Radjabov in a Dragon!

      Magnus Carlsen vs. Teimour Radjabov

      Magnus Carlsen vs. Teimour Radjabov in Round #7.
      Photo by FIDE.com.

      Radjabov,T (2751) – Carlsen,M (2765) [B77]
      FIDE GP Baku AZE (7), 28.04.2008

      1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Be3 Bg7 7.f3 Nc6 8.Qd2 0-0 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.Bb3 Rc8 11.h4 h5 12.0-0-0 Ne5 13.Bg5 Rc5 14.Kb1 Re8 15.g4 hxg4 16.h5 Nxh5 17.Rxh5 gxh5 18.Qh2 Ng6 19.Qxh5 Qa5 20.f4 Rxg5 21.fxg5 e6 22.Nf5 exf5 23.Qxg6 Be6 24.Qh5 fxe4 25.Rf1 Qe5 26.Rxf7 Bxb3 27.axb3 g3 28.Ka2 Rf8 29.Rxf8+ Kxf8 30.Qg4 e3 31.g6 e2 32.Qf3+ Ke8 33.Qf7+ Kd8 34.Qg8+ Kd7 35.Qf7+ Qe7 36.Qf5+ Kd8 37.Qa5+ b6 38.Qd5 e1Q 39.Qa8+ Kd7 40.Qb7+ Ke8 0-1 (See game)

      Round Seven

      Video by FIDE.com


    7. Teimour Radjabov gives a very interesting interview earlier in the tournament. He speaks on a number of topics including the Grand Prix cycle, his expectation, his ELO, Rapid Chess, chess tradition, Azerbaijan’s success and much more!

      Part One: Geoffrey Borg interviews GM Teimour Radjabov

      Part Two: Geoffrey Borg interviews GM Teimour Radjabov

    8. Round Nine

      Peter Svidler falls to Adams. As I said early on, Svidler has been very inconsistent and in this game against Adams he has to sacrifice the exchange to avoid getting his queen trapped. The game lasted only until move 39. Svidler is one of the most personable GMs around, but certainly been inconsistent the past few years. Grischuk beat Inarkiev and now has a 1/2-point lead over China’s Wang Yue and Azerbaijan’s Vugar Gashimov, both on +2 and having wonderful tournaments. Radjabov ground down Kamsky in a Maroczy Bind setup and is in 4th spot with +1. All three Azeris are having good showing in their home country.

      Video by FIDE.com


    9. Round Eleven

      Wang Yue moves into a tie with Alexander Grischuk after outclassing a beleaguered Peter Svidler. The Russian continues his woes and now sits on a disappointing -2 score. Both Wang and Grischuk are on an undefeated 7-4 and have 2800 TPR, but Vugar Gashimov is in tow with 6½. Shahkriyar Mamedyarov is within striking distance with 6-5, sharing the score with both Magnus Carlsen and Michael Adams. In a shocking development, Etienne Bacrot hung his queen to Ernesto Inarkiev. Check out the following position.

      Bacrot-Inarkiev, FIDE Grand Prix 2008

      Bacrot played 23. Qe7+?? and resigned before the
      shocked Russian could respond.

      Mamedyarov almost lost after blundering to Adams, but Adams overlooked the opportunity and they drew. Fatigue has beaten some of the players.

      Video from FIDE.com


    10. Svidler has playing badly for sure ,the 3 time Russian Champion should stop experimenting but the victory against Kamsky as black was refreshing.Nice to see Gashimov hand Grischuk the defeat,

    11. Round 11

      The Gashimov result is quite a victory. I knew the Azeris would be coming full steam in the last two rounds. I’m very happy with the result. Even happier at Wang Yue’s result. I believe Mamedyarov will try to beat Wang in their last round game. No quick draws.

      Round 11 Report… Gashimov pulls into first!

      Vugar Gashimov showing his win over Alex Grischuk. Impressive!


    12. I hate tournaments where normal rules of Chess are bent to satisfy the organiser like no draw before move something etc ,im sure ir wont be long before someone suggests awarding 2 or 3 points a win .Organizers should stop tinkering with laws of Chess for tradition’s sake its no wonder we have this confuzion on right way to decide World Championship ,match ,knock out lottery or round robin .FIDE should sort this out.

    13. Carlsen stayed close. Svidler came back a bit too. Radjabov faltered as did Kamsky. Good result for Wang Yue. Certainly all talk of Chinese being over-rated is long over. In addition, they will take the gold medal at the Olympiad tournament in Dresden.

    14. Amon,

      You lost… we count tiebreaks. Carlsen came in 3rd. You can pay me by Friday.

      Just kidding.


      It’s always easy to pick the #1 seed. How many even mentioned Wang Yue?? Well I did!! :mrgreen: Carlsen did make a good comeback winning games in the second half. Bacrot played meekly this tournament even hanging a queen. What has happened to him the past couple of years??

      Mamedyarov was playing for a win. He would have helped Gashimov and moved into 1st-3rd himself. If he had lost, it would have been disastrous for the Azeris.

      Round 13

      Video by FIDE.com


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