Tob borden

Should you ever plan a holiday in the Netherlands, be sure to do so during the two weekends of the Leiden Chess Tournament: nice weather guaranteed! And hot! See the picture where the top players have to compete each other in very warm circumstances.

So far for the weather. I have learnt that everything is my fault. Always. What’s the issue? GM Natalia Zhukova played in the third round against last year’s winner IM Stefan Kuipers and she won. She – and two other GM’s – has now scored the maximum amount of points: 3 out of 3. It is no secret that next year we would like to organize a special crown group with all former winners of the LCT – and maybe the winner of the national championship in the Netherlands. So in order to make sure that Natalia again will attend the tournament next year, she must win this year’s LCT.
When she walked by towards the Analysis Room she said to me that for this reason it is my fault that Stefan lost. Why, thank you Natalia, here goes my good understanding with Stefan… On the other hand, as a former winner he already has an invitation to next year’s crown group.

The other two GM’s who have scored 3 out of 3 are Hugo ten Hertog, who won from Antonio Viana D’Cunnha from India (maybe Italian ancestors?) and Slava Ikonnikov who defeat Arthur Pijpers from the local strong chess club LSG.

As far as the Dutch women are concerned: our hope is that the young Anna Maja Kazarian will keep on scoring as she does so far: her first game was against GM Chanda Sandipan (draw) and she managed to again score two draws against GM Roeland Pruijssers and GM Nikita Maiorov.
Should she keep up the good work, she must be able to score a – whatever – norm.
Next in line are eight players with a score of 2,5 out of 3.

B-groupIn the B-group only one player has the maximum score: Chi Yun Cchung (double c, no error) (on the right on the photo). As far as I know Chi Yun is a talented young player also from LSG (this year’s champion in the masterclass competition!). So this club is doing very well in training young talent.

The daily prize offered by DGT went to Rolf Corstjens, who has a broken leg but nevertheless wanted to play. He will be operated on Monday and therefore he took two byes on Monday and Tuesday so that he can continue playing after his leg has been set (and the plaster around his leg has dried) on Thursday. That’s the spirit!👻

Last but not least: since the Belgian team has won the Bronze medal in the world championship soccer the three Belgian participants in the LCT will receive two consumption vouchers. (Thank God there are no French participants in the tournament…)