Round 7 report

…and it is all over! Seven days filled with combative games is at an end. Gawain Jones claimed first place and the audience has been treated to chess fireworks during the last week.

The much anticipated decider between Gawain Jones and Pentala Harikrishna never really got going as Jones played a very solid game as white. Pentala saw no realistic winning chances in a barren position and accepted the fully justified draw offer. Gawain was champion!

Parham Maghsoodloo experimented in the opening as black against Dieter Nisipeanu. It quickly resulted in a worse position and soon Dieter had both an extra pawn and a won position. Time trouble made the German lose his way and Parham made a fortunate escape.

Both Nihal Sarin and Tiger Hillarp Persson used a surprising amount of time playing well known theory. Tiger managed to snatch a pawn, but couldn’t convert it into a win and had to settle for the draw.

The tournament’s very last game was Ivan Saric against Nils Grandelius. A seemingly equal middlegame all of a sudden turned lethal for black as another opposite coloured bishop position appeared. Nils missed the devastating Rxe5 and Ivan was winning, but the Swede saved the game miraculously. An entertaining end to and entertaining tournament!

TePe Sigeman & Co Chess Tournament would like to thank the players for taking part and providing the audience with exciting chess every minute of the seven rounds. We would also like to extend our gratitude to the sponsors, partners and the venue Malmö Live.

Final standings Tepe Sigeman & Co Chess Tournament 2019

Plac.   ELO Nation Points
1. Gawain Jones 2702 England 5
2. Pentala Harikrishna 2730 India
3. Nils Grandelius 2688 Sweden 4
4. Dieter Nisipeanu 2667 Germany
5-6. Nihal Sarin 2598 India 3
5-6. Parham Magsoodloo 2671 Iran 3
7-8. Tiger Hillarp Persson 2563 Sweden
7-8. Ivan Saric 2694 Croatia

The winner is…

After 2 hours of play Gawain Jones secured tournament victory by drawing against Pentala Harikrishna who at least will get a shared 2nd prize half a point behind Gawain.

Gawain Jones
Gawain Jones,England wins Tepe Sigeman & Co Chess Tournament 2019. Photo: Lars OA Hedlund

Round 6 report

Five days of hard and long games might have taken it’s toll as the play was untamed at times during round 6.

Nils Grandelius sacrificed a pawn for promising compensation in a Rossolimo Sicilian against Nihal Sarin. As Nils was trying to find a way through, Nihal got his queen tangled on the kingside and the Swede put it out of play with 23.Lg5. After that the win was straightforward.

Parham Maghsoodloo and Ivan Saric played a very sharp game that looked like it could swing either way at times. Surprisingly the exchange of blows led to an equal endgame that could only ever end in a draw.

Pentala Harikrishna got a promising position early on against Dieter Nisipeanu’s french defence. But the thematic manoeuvre Ld7-e8-h5 got black out of trouble and the game ended with a rook ending and a draw.

Gawain Jones took the chance break into the solo lead by beating Tiger Hillarp Persson. After a slow start to the game things soon got exciting as a miscalculation by Tiger allowed Gawain to sacrifice his queen for a decisive attack.

This opens up for a very tense final round! Pentala Harikrishna will need to defeat Gawain Jones as black to leapfrog him into 1st place.

Photos round 6

Yesterday Swedish Chess Federation official photographer, Lars OA Hedlund, arrived from Stockholm and was taking photos during the round. You find those photos here.

Nisipeanu & Harikrishna in the commentary room after there game. Photo: Lars OA Hedlund

Round 5 report

Both leaders drew as Nihal Sarin won the battle of the youngsters against Parham Maghsoodloo. The two Swedes faced off with Nils Grandelius having to win twice to secure the whole point.

Dieter Nisipeanu tried something different (6.Qf3) in the opening and it misfired, with Gawain Jones gaining the upper hand. A black win looked likely during most of the game, but Dieter managed to secure a draw by repetition with some clever play at the end.

A very calm game between Ivan Saric and Pentala Harikrishna suddenly came to life in a very sharp endgame that had study-like twists. Ivan held the draw with a piece down through very exact play.

Nihal held his cool when Parham launched a kingside attack, opting for a breakthrough in the centre. The lone queen dominated against the two rooks and snatched pawn after pawn until black had to resign.

Tiger Hillarp Persson played the Hedgehog against fellow Swede Nils Grandelius. Nils dictated the game and had the opportunity to secure an early win. Tiger defended with vigour and survived into an endgame, only for Nils to force himself into a winning position again and this time claiming the point.

Round 4 report

The two Indian players faced each other and Nihal Sarin, the young underdog, defended well as black against the tournament leader Pentala Harikrishna. A seemingly drawish endgame was reached, but Pentala managed to squeeze out every drop of play – winning through a beautiful bishop sacrifice in an opposite-coloured bishop position.

“The luckiest day of my life!” stated Parham Maghsoodloo after his game with Nils Grandelius. The Swede missed several opportunities to gain a big advantage in the middlegame and had to settle for a draw in the end.

Dieter Nisipeanu equalized quickly as black against Tiger Hillarp Persson. As it looked like Dieter would get the definite upper hand Tiger whipped up some kingside activity mixed with time trouble. A bunch of exchanges followed and a draw was agreed after an easy rook endgame was reached.

Gawain Jones and Ivan Saric played a very sharp game despite an early queen exchange. The Croatian struggled to maintain equality and lost a piece (and the game) as the time control approached.

As it stands Pentala Harikrishna and Gawain Jones has opened up a small lead at the top. Can anybody catch them?

Round 3 report

The third round was preceded by the news that Nihal Sarin had reached the magical 2600-level, as the second youngest player ever to do so. A very impressive accomplishment and we expect big things from Nihal in the future!

Parham Maghsoodloo took on Tiger Hillarp Persson in a very complicated Sicilian. As the time control approached Tiger’s defence crumbled under pressure from both the Iranian and the clock.

In Nils Grandelius vs. Pentala Harikrishna it was a battle between activity and the superior pawn structure. Nils couldn’t find the best way forward and the Indian grandmaster steered the game to a win with a steady hand.

Nihal Sarin and Gawain Jones got deep into a Ruy Lopez theory exchange. Gawain sacrificed on h3 and the computer said No, but the audience said Yes! However, Nihal avoided the complications and chose a safer route to a shared point through multiple exchanges.

Inventive opening play by Ivan Saric made Dieter Nisipeanu sacrifice a pawn for activity. The compensation evaporated and it looked like the Croatian would win. But after a few inaccuracies it was Ivan who had to go for the draw by perpetual check.

The funniest part of the day was when Parham admitted in the post-mortem to have prepared against the wrong swede – he had spent the morning getting ready to take on Nils Grandelius!?