Anil Anand
Chess Tidbits

Chess World Cup 2021

Jan-Krzysztof Duda

Polish Grand Master Jan-Krzysztof Duda, rated 2738 ELO, emerged victorious in the FIDE Chess World Cup Open 2021 with a convincing (1.5-0.5) win over Russia’s Sergey Karjakin. The 9th edition of the FIDE Chess World Cup was a single-elimination tournament. The two World Cup finalists qualified for the Candidates Tournament 2022 and the rest of the final eight qualified for the FIDE Grand Prix 2022. The final eight (excluding Carlsen) were Duda, Karjakin, Fedoseev, Étienne Bacrot, Vidit Gujrathi, Amin Tabatabaei and Sam Shankland.

Some of the other outstanding but unfancied performers were Andrey Esipenko, Kacper Piorun, Vasif Durarbayli, Velimir Ivić and Haik M. Martirosyan.

23 year old Duda finished the tournament unbeaten and took home, USD 88,000 for first place. Karjakin on the other hand, won USD 64,000 for his second position. Norway's GM Magnus Carlsen also won his game for third place by defeating Russia’s GM Vladimir Fedoseev with a score of 2-0. Carlsen and Fedoseev also won prizes worth USD 48,000 and USD 40,000 respectively.

By reaching the final, Duda had already made history for Polish chess two days ago. The last time a Polish player qualified for the Candidates tournament was Miguel Najdorf in 1953. Winning the tournament can be considered the best-ever achievement by a Polish player in the history of the game.


First-ever Women's Chess World Cup

Alexandra Kosteniuk

The first edition of the FIDE Women's Chess World Cup 2021 concluded at Russia's Sochi concurrently with ninth Men's Chess World Cup 2021. Russia's Alexandra Kosteniuk emerged victorious against fellow countrywoman Aleksandra Goryachkina after two tie-breakers - replicating the way she won the Women's World Championship in 2008.

Goryachkina had lost the last Women's World Championship match in January 2020 to reigning Chinese champion Ju Wenjun.

Some of the most interesting games are provided here for the enjoyment of our readers.

Selected Games

Levon Aronian

Goldmoney Asian Rapid Tournament

Levon Aronian scored back-to-back wins against Vladislav Artemiev to secure first place at the Goldmoney Asian Rapid tournament. Meanwhile, in the 3rd place playoff, Magnus Carlsen beat Ding Liren 3-0 in the blitz tiebreakers to take 3rd place. A similar sequence happened at the World Cup in Sochi vs Fedoseev for the 3rd place play-off.

Abhimanyu Mishra

Youngest Grandmaster in History

Abhimanyu Mishra (born 5 February 2009) became the youngest Grandmaster in history beating Sergey Karjakin's record set 19 years ago by over 2 months.

In June 2021, Mishra earned clear first place at the Vezérképző GM Mix tournament in Budapest, Hungary, with a score of 7.0/9 and a performance rating of 2619; giving him his third GM norm. As his rating had also crossed 2500, this third norm made Mishra the youngest GM in chess history.

PlayerAge at Final GM norm
Bobby Fischer15y 6m 1d
Judit Polgar15y 4m 28d
Peter Leko14y 4m 22d
Etienne Bacrot14y 2m 0d
Ruslan Ponomaryov14y 0m 17d
Teimour Radjabov14y 0m 14d
Bu Xiangzhi13y 10m 13d
Parimarjan Negi13y 4m 20d
Nodirbek Abdusattorov13y 1m 11d
Praggnanandhaa Rameshbabu12y 10m 13d
Javokhir Sindarov12y 10m 5d
Gukesh D12y 7m 17d
Sergey Karjakin12y 7m 0d
Abhimanyumishra12y 4m25d

István Csom

GM Istvan Csom Passes Away

István Csom (2 June 1940 – 28 July 2021 was a Hungarian chess Grandmaster and International Arbiter. FIDE awarded him the Grandmaster title in 1973. He was Hungarian Champion in 1972 and 1973 (jointly).

Between 1968 and 1988, Istvan Csom played in nine Chess Olympiads for Hungary, sensationally winning gold with the team in 1978 – the first and only time from 1952 to 1990 that the Soviet team failed to win gold when playing in the Olympiad – and winning silver in three other Olympiads. In 1980, Csom also won the gold medal for the best individual result at board four. All in all, Csom played 191 games for Hungary in the Chess Olympiads.

National Online Chess Tournament

IM Mitrabha Guha

WIM Vantika Agrawal

IM Mitrabha Guha (2467) emerged victorious ahead of fancied GMs Vaibhav Suri (2600) and Abhijeet Gupta (2612) with a score of 10/11.

The women’s event was won by WIM Vantika Agrawal.