Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Dmitry Jakovenko is European Champion

The European Individual Chess Championship 2012 took place in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, from 19th March to 1st April, 2012. It is part of the World Chess Championship cycle as the top 23 players qualify for the World Cup.

After 11 rounds of play, the 3rd seed Dmitry Jakovenko from Russia emerged the new European Champion.

Jakovenko defeated the earlier leader Laurent Fressinet from France and overtook the first position. As the other top games were drawn, Jakovenko remained alone with 8.5 points and tie-break was not to be counted.

Fressinet takes silver medal while Vladimir Malakhov earns bronze.

Replay the top games from the Championship with the analysis by Houdini engine.

A kind of Sofia rules have been implemented as communication between players (the offer of draw) was forbidden until the 40th move has been played.

This led to some kind of controversy as Azerbaijan players Eltaj Safarli (and his opponent Baron Tal of Israel) and 2nd seed Shakhriyar Mamedyarov were forfeited for agreeing to a draw before the 40th move.

In addition, a day earlier Mamedyarov was forfeited because he was 10 seconds late for the game, thus breaching the "zero tolerance" rule. Mamedyarov quit the tournament, but he admitted the mistake in an interview with Chess-News.ru.

Nevertheless, it is a great pity that the brilliant player and fantastic person, as well as the other players, fell victim to the rigid administering of the rules. Some flexibility is needed, at least for the massive tournaments played according to the Swiss system.

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