Anil Anand
Chess Tidbits


On 02-Feb-2020, AICCF player Amit Kumar Sharma won the 18th Punjab Kesari Chess Tournament at Ambala Cantt. With 4.5/5 points. It was an open category tournament with 70 participants.


Levon Aronian defeated Sergey Karjakin in a playoff to win the Superbet Rapid and Blitz Grand Chess Tour in Bucharest in November 2019.

Vishy Anand, Le Quang Liem and Anton Korobov took the next three places. Korobov kept a narrow edge from the Rapid which he won handsomely but faded in Blitz as he suffered a five-game losing streak at the outset and could not recover. On the other hand, former blitz champion Le Quang Liem was on the verge of adding a first Grand Chess Tour title to his list of accolades this year. Despite finishing with 11/18, tied with Sergey Karjakin at the top of the blitz standings, he needed to post much higher numbers to make up the ground lost in the Rapid tournament where he scored in the bottom half. Karjakin's 9 points in the rapid standings combined with his 11 points at the close of the blitz left him equal with Levon Aronian on 20/36 who had scored 10 points apiece in Rapid and Blitz. After a draw in the first game, Aronian won a near-miniature in game two to take home the tournament trophy. Both players shared the first two prizes totalling USD $31,250 apiece.

Below we give a crucial topsy-turvy game which had Korobov won, the final result of the tournament might have been totally different.


The 2020 Women's World Chess Championship was a closely contested match in Kazan between China’s reigning champion Ju Wenjun and Russian challenger Aleksandra Goryachkina, the winner of a newly established Candidates Tournament that was held in 2019.

The classical time-control section of the match ended with a tie of 6-6, after 3 victories apiece for Ju and Goryachkina and 6 draws. On 24th January 2020, after 4 games of Rapid chess tie-breaker, Ju Wenjun narrowly managed to retain the title with 1 win and 3 draws with a score 2.5-1.5.

Unfortunately, just like compatriots Sergey Karjakin in 2016 and Kateryna Lagno in 2018, Goryachkina narrowly lost the Rapid playoff.

The crucial 12th game which Goryachkina won from behind to tie the classical score 6-6.


The 2020 Candidates Tournament will be an 8-player chess double round-robin tournament to be played in Yekaterinburg, Russia, from 15 March to 5 April 2020.

The winner of the Candidates will earn the right to challenge the defending world champion, Magnus Carlsen of Norway, in the World Chess Championship 2020 match.

The eight qualifiers are as follows:

  1. Fabiano Caruana
  2. Teimour Radjabov
  3. Ding Liren
  4. Wang Hao
  5. Alexander Grischuk
  6. Ian Nepomniachtchi
  7. Anish Giri
  8. Kirill Alekseenko

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave narrowly missed qualification after Russian federation chose Alekseenko as their wild card entry.

The World Championship match is scheduled for November 2020 and will take place either in Dubai or in Buenos Aires.


The chess tournament in Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands is traditionally the first Super GM event of the year. The main sponsor of the chess festival, which started in 1938, remains the steel factory in Ijmuiden, which is now part of the Tata Group, one of India's oldest and largest business empires with subsidiaries involved in steel, power, chemicals, communications, beverages, motor vehicles, hotels, and many more.

There was the Masters' Tournament where the world no. 1 (Magnus Carlsen) and no. 2 (Fabiano Caruana) took part, a Challengers’ event which qualified the winner to next year’s Masters' Tournament and several Qualifier’s events to determine the participants in next year's Challengers' tournament. Fabiano Caruana won his first Tata Steel Chess tournament at Wijk aan zee and did so with a round to spare. His final score was 10/13, two points ahead of World champion Magnus Carlsen (8/13). Wesley So was placed third with 7.5/13.

Caruana won a crucial game versus Vishy Anand and never looked back.