Six rounds have been already played at the European Individual Chess Championship 2023 in Vrnjacka Banja, Serbia, and GM Anton Korobov (UKR, 2659) and IM Stamatis Kourkoulos-Arditis (GRE, 2520) tie for the top scoring 5.5 points, each.
The ECU President Mr. Zurab Azmaiparashvili opened yesterday’s round wishing a happy International Women’s Day to all female participants, arbiters, and volunteers of the Championship. He also wished a very happy birthday and many returns to the Chief Arbiter of the event Mr. Tomasz Delega.
A group of eight players follow the leaders scoring 5 points each: GM Thai Dai Van Nguyen (CZE, 2651), GM Vitaliy Bernadsnkiy (UKR, 2611), GM Ruslan Ponomariov (UKR, 2655), GM Giga Quparadze (GEO, 2483), GM Svane Frederik (GER, 2577), GM Alexey Sarana (FIDE, 2688), GM Nijat Abasov (AZE, 2625) and GM Benjamin Gledura (HUN, 2637).
GM Anton Korobov easily made a draw having black pieces against Czech GM Thai Dai Van Nguyen. The peaceful result was signed after only 20 moves of play, though GM Thai Dai Van Nguyen had a slightly better position according to the engine. Korobov joined the live studio after the game, explaining that his opponent offered him a draw in a position where he felt extremely unpleasant.
IM Stamatis Kourkoulos-Arditis defeated the two-time Azerbaijani Champion GM Eltaj Safarli (AZE, 2608) to join Korobov in the lead. It was a very interesting game and it seemed that Safarli has everything under control. However, the Azerbaijani grandmaster made a mistake with 24.Rf6?! and Kourkoulos-Arditis started building the advantage. There was no comeback for Eltaj Safarli who was forced to resign in the 33rd move.
Five rounds left to be played before the announcement of the Winners and the 7th round starts today at 15:00 CEST. The top 10 pairings are:
Live broadcast of the games can be followed with live commentaries by IM Miodrag Perunovic on the ECU YouTube Channel.