Friday, November 16, 2007

Kramnik Leads Tal Memorial

Mikhail Tal was born in Riga, Latvia. At the age of eight, Tal learned to play chess while watching his father, a doctor. Shortly thereafter he joined the Riga Palace of Young Pioneers chess club. His play was not exceptional at first but he worked hard to improve. Alexander Koblencs began tutoring Tal in 1949. Tal's game improved rapidly thereafter, and by 1951 he had qualified for the Latvian Championship. In the 1952 Latvian Championship Tal finished ahead of his trainer. Tal won his first Latvian title in 1953, and was awarded the title of candidate master. He became a Soviet master in 1954 by defeating Vladimir Saigin in a qualifying match. Tal graduated in Literature from the University of Riga, writing a thesis on the satirical works of Ilf and Petrov, and taught school in Riga for a time in his early 20s. He was a member of the Daugava Sports Society, and represented Latvia in internal Soviet team competitions.

The Russian Cup Men's Final Tournament
takes place in the town of Serpukhov near Moscow from 5 to 16 Nov. The event is conducted with the support of the town administration. The tournament is played according to the knock-out system, with 16 highest-rated played beginning to play from the second round. The rate of play is 90 minutes to each for the whole game with an increment of 30 second per move starting from the first. If the score is equal, the rivals will play two rapid and (if necessary) two blitz games.

The round-robin tournament, where Vasily Ivanchuk (Ukraine, 2787), Vladimir Kramnik (Russia, 2785), Peter Leko (Hungary, 2755), Shakhriar Mamedyarov (Azerbajan, 2752), Alexei Shirov (Spain, 2739), Boris Gelfand (Israel, 2752), Gata Kamsky (the USA, 2724), Evgeny Alekseyev (Russia, 2716), Magnus Karlsen (Norway, 2714), and Dmitry Jakovenko (Russia, 2710) are taking part, started on 10 Nov. Each round starts at 3 p.m. The playing days are 10 through 14 and 16 through 19 Nov.
The rate of play is 100 minutes to each player for the first 40 moves plus 50 minutes for the next 20 moves plus 15 minutes for the rest of the game with an increment of 30 seconds per move starting from the first.

Replay game with analysis
Vladimir Kramnik-Alexei Shirov 1-0

Replay game with analysis
Vassily Ivanchuk-Magnus Carlsen 1/2-1/2

Replay game with analysis
Vladimir Kramnik-Evgeny Alekseev 1-0

Replay game with analysis
Vladimir Kramnik-Shakhriyar Mamedyarov 1-0

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The chess games of Mikhail Tal

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