European Club Cup in Eilat Print
Friday, 12 October 2012 06:04
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On 11th of October 2012 the mayor of Eilat hit the gong to officially start the European Club Cup in Eilat (Israel). The opening ceremony was also attended by the ECU General Secretary Sava Stoisavljevic, the FIDE Vice President Israel Gelfer, the President of Israeli Chess Federation Moshe Slav and other distinguish guests.

34 teams compete in the Open Section, while the Women Section has 8 teams participating. Both Sections will be played over 7 rounds of Swiss system.

Usually the first round of a big swiss event is somewhat boring due to the big difference in strength between competitors. Not this time. The ECU has decided to apply accelerated pairing, meaning that teams from the top half of the draw have to meet each other already at the first round. The top seed Socar Azerbaijan lead by Teimour Radjabov began by losing against strong Israeli team Ashdod lead by Ukrainian Vassily Ivanchuk. Two other players of the National Ukrainian team Andrey Volokitin and Pavel Eljanov contributed to the victory of Ashdod by winning their games against Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Veselin Topalov respectively.

Israeli club Beer-Sheba could not struggle without the world championship challenger Boris Gelfand in the match against SHSM-64 Moscow and lost with 4.5 – 1.5 score. Anish Giri, Boris Grachev and Vladimir Potkin scored important victories in the match.

In Women Section the top-rated team Cercle d`Echecs de Monte-Carlo (which gathered the strongest women players Hou Yifan, Humpy Koneru and Anna Muzychuk) won the tough match against SHSM-Nashe Nasledie team. World champion Hou Yifan lost against ex-world champion Alexandra Kosteniuk while Pia Cramling outplayed Alina Kashlinskaya. Ekaterina Kovalevskaya and Valentina Gunina had to defend worse positions against Anna Muzychuk and Humpy Koneru respectively. After almost 6 hours of play Valentina Gunina blundered and lost the game which turned to be the decisive one for the fate of the match.

The official tournament web page is

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