Philippines beats Bulgaria, 2.5-1.5 ISTANBUL CHESS OLYMPIAD

Philippine Participants in Ankara Turkey "Istanbul Chess Olympiad 2012

  • 1-3 Russia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, 11/12
  • 4-8 China, Philippines, Ukraine, Hungary, Spain, 10/12
  • 9-23 Germany, Moldova, India, USA, France, England, Mexico, Croatia, Argentina, Georgia, Turkey, Uzbekistan, Italy, Israel, FYROM, 9/11

Total of 150 participants

Once every two years all of the chess world meets in the Chess Olympiad to determine world supremacy in this Game of Kings. The 40th edition is currently ongoing in Istanbul, Turkey, and a record-breaking 277 teams (men and women) have arrived in this historic city to meet in friendly combat. Defending champion is Ukraine but of course Russia, generally regarded as the strongest team and Armenia (champion in 2006 and 2008) will both try to grab the crowns this year. After six rounds tied for 1st place is Russia, Armenia and Azerbaijan.

In the Olympiad's biggest upset so far the Philippines defeated chess powerhouse Bulgaria 2.5-1.5 and continued its dream performance by climbing to no. 5 in the official standings. The RP bets were outranked in every board and indeed the Bulgarians tried hard to win, but Wesley So, facing former world champion Veselin Topalov, Eugene Torre and Mark Paragua gave as much as they took and held their opponents to draws.

Oliver Barbosa, playing against former world top-10 Kiril Georgiev, saw an opening and gave up his queen for two rooks and the attack. However Georgiev rebuffed all threats and seemed on his way to a win until a shock 55…g5+!? confused him and caused a blunder. He resigned on move 59 when Barbosa won his queen.

Georgiev, Kiril (2682) -- Barbosa, Oliver (2554) [D16]

40th Olympiad Open Istanbul TUR (6.5), 03.09.2012

1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 dxc4 5.a4 e6 6.e3 c5 7.Bxc4 Nc6 8.0-0 Be7 9.Qe2 cxd4 10.exd4 0-0 11.Rd1 Nb4 12.Ne5 Bd7 13.Qf3 Bc6 14.Qg3 Nfd5 15.Bh6 Bf6 16.Ne4 Kh8 17.Nxf6 Qxf6 18.Bg5 Qf5 19.Bd2 Rac8 20.a5 f6 21.Nxc6 Nxc6 22.Be1 Nf4 23.Bf1 Rfd8 24.Qe3 a6 25.Rac1 Rd7 26.Rc5 Qxc5!? 27.dxc5 Rxd1 28.g3 Nd5 29.Qxe6 Rd8 30.Kg2 Nd4 31.Qe4 f5 32.Qe5 f4 33.Bc4 Nc2 34.Bc3 Nxc3 35.bxc3 fxg3 36.hxg3 Ne1+ 37.Kh3 Nd3 38.Qf5 Rd2 39.f3 Nf2+ 40.Kh4 Nd1 41.Qe5 Rh2+ 42.Kg5 Rh6 43.g4 Rc6 44.Kh4 Nb2 45.Qe7 Rcc8 46.Be6 Rb8 47.Qc7 Na4 48.c4 Nc3 49.Bd7 Ne2 50.Qe5 Ra8 51.c6 bxc6 52.Bxc6 Rac8 53.Be4 Rd1 54.f4 Rf8 55.Qh5 g5+!? 56.Qxg5 Nxf4 57.Qe7? Rh1+! 58.Kg3

No choice. If 58.Bxh1 Ng6+; and 58.Kg5 h6#

58...Rh3+ 59.Kf2 Ng6+ 0-1

GM Wesley So 2652 vs. GM Veselin Topalov 2752 1/2

GM Oliver Barbosa 2554 vs. GM Kiril Georgiev 2682 1-0

GM Eugene Torre 2469 vs. GM Ivan Cheparinov 2681 1/2

GM Mark Paragua 2508 vs. GM Alexander Delchev 2596 1/2

The Philippines' next opponent will be another powerhouse: Hungary!

Philippine Participants

The contingent was led by National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) Executive Director Grand Master (GM) Jayson Gonzales, head coach of Team Philippines.

Philippine Ambassador to Turkey Marilyn J. Alarilla met with members of Team Philippines upon their arrival in Istanbul.

The members of the Philippine Men's team are GM Mark Paragua (ELO 2508), International Master (IM) Oliver Dimakiling (2428), GM Wesley So (2650), GM Oliver Barbosa (2554) and GM Eugene Torre (2469). The Philippine Women's team is composed of World IM Catherine Perena (2091), World FIDE Master (WFM) Rulp Ylem Jose (2061), Women National Master (WNM), Jedara Docena (2061),  WNM Jan Jodilyn Fronda (2022),  and  WNM Janelle Mae Frayna (2061).

NCFP Chairman Prospero Pichay Jr. and NCFP Secretary-General Abraham Tolentino Jr. arrived in Istanbul on September 2 to support the team and to attend World Chess Federation (FIDE) Council meetings.

Turkish Minister of Youth and Sports Suat Kilic, with FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, and Turkish Chess Federation President Ali Nihat Yazici opened the competition in the evening of August 27 at the WOW Congress Hotel in Istanbul.

Chess National Federations from 158 countries are participating at the biennial Chess Olympiad.

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