The European championship is half way to go and business start warming up with not less than four decisive games on the top five boards. Moreover, the proud Ukrainian leader Anton Korobov was finally beaten falling victim to an excellent preparation of his opponent, the former European champion Ian Nepomniachtchi.


Three of his runners up were also defeated for the first time: the top seed Czech David Navara by Polish Mateusz Bartel; Ukrainian Yuri Vovk by the current European champion Alexander Motylev and Polish Robert Kempinski by Armenian Gabriel Sargissian. Only one top game between the Russian Evgeny Najer and Ukrainian Pavel Eljanov ended in a draw. The best Israeli players so far are GMs Ilya Smirin and Emil Sutovsky and the highly surprising untitled Pinchas Kantraji who beat another former European champion, Croatian Zdenko Kozul. Young Israelis Ariel Erenberg and Ohad Kraus astonished by beating GM Gil Popilski and IM Sergey Chekhov.

playing hall

After the sixth round there are four players at the lead:  Nepomniachtchi, Motylev, Sargissian and Bartel with 5 points each ahead of 26 players with 4.5 each.

The 7th round will start Tuesday in Ramada hotel in Jerusalem. The summit meetings Motylev vs Nepomnianchtchi and Bartel vs Sargissian are naturally at the focus.

All games, results, photos and reports may be found in the official website

 By Yochanan Afek

Photos by Yoav Nis