FIDE Grand Prix Thessaloniki 2013 (11)
Dominguez Perez scores best result of his career in winning Thessaloniki Grand Prix
Mark Crowther - Monday 3rd June 2013
Dominguez beat Topalov to win the Thessaloniki Grand Prix. Photo © | http://thessaloniki2013.fide.com
Cuban Grandmaster Leinier Dominguez Perez won the Thessaloniki Grand Prix with a big 8/11 score after defeating Veselin Topalov in the final round. The win should take Dominguez to number 11 in the world and a rating of 2757 by far his highest. 30 year old Dominguez should now get further opportunities to play at the highest level.
Dominguez stood worse as white against Topalov but the Bulgarian overpressed and was left trying to save an awkward rook and pawn ending but failed.
The way to the victory was opened by Fabiano Caruana who defeated leader Gata Kamsky in a Ruy Lopez. Kamsky's 13...g6 was probably not the best and this put him under pressure for a long time. 35...Kh7 lost out of hand (35...Qf6 and play continues). Caruana thus took second place on tie-break from Kamsky who nevertheless should still enter the top 10.
Ruslan Ponomariov probably had a winning position against out of form Alexander Grischuk but allowed the Russian to escape with a draw.
Vassily Ivanchuk admitted he was quite close to being lost out of the opening on the black side of a Gruenfeld against Etienne Bacrot. He identified Bacrot's 18.d5 and 22.Bg5 as errors, and he brought home the full point on move 40.
Alexander Grischuk took a quick draw with Rustam Kasimdzhanov in a game that was over in less than 40 minutes.
Peter Svidler finished a long series of events by losing for the first time to Hikaru Nakamura after having a near winning position from the opening. Svidler somewhat overpressed and after missing 48.Bc3 it's entirely possible there was no saving the game. He'll be glad of the break as will Nakamura who has already said he's more than ready for one.
The event was organised in less than a week but the enthusiasm of the organisers and local chess players made this perhaps the most successful Grand Prix so far. Often the Grand Prix tournaments have seemed like something that just had to be organised somewhere as part of the World Championship but not cherished as individual events in their own right.
Perhaps this is a lesson that places that really would appreciate such a top event as they don't have regular ones of their own should be helped financially to put them on. Whilst Greece has hosted a large number of summer swiss opens over the years this was their biggest chess event since the Thessaloniki Olympiad of 1988.
In the closing ceremony it was announced that the next Grand Prix is in Peking (Beijing) China July 3rd to 17th. The current list on the FIDE Grand Prix website says the players are: Mamedyarov, Wang Hao, Gelfand, Karjakin, Morozevich, Topalov, Leko, Grischuk, Ivanchuk, Giri, Kamsky, Radjabov. Maybe there will be withdrawals from players with no chance of qualifying such as Radjabov. Final Standings: Dominguez 8/11, Caruana, Kamsky 7.5, Ponomariov, Grischuk 6, Kasimdzhanov 5.5, Nakamura 5, Topalov, Svidler 4.5, Bacrot, Morozevich 4, Ivanchuk 3.5.
| FIDE GP Thessaloniki Thessaloniki GRE Wed 22nd May 2013 - Tue 4th Jun 2013
Final Round 11 Standings:
|1||11||Dominguez Perez Leinier||GM||CUB||2723||8||0||6||40.00|
|Round 11 (June 3, 2013)|
|Dominguez Perez, Leinier||- Topalov, Veselin||1-0||71||B48||Sicilian Paulsen|
|Caruana, Fabiano||- Kamsky, Gata||1-0||37||C88||Ruy Lopez Closed|
|Kasimdzhanov, Rustam||- Grischuk, Alexander||½-½||25||B90||Sicilian Najdorf Variation|
|Nakamura, Hikaru||- Svidler, Peter||1-0||56||A10||Dutch, QI and KID Systems|
|Bacrot, Etienne||- Ivanchuk, Vassily||0-1||40||D85||Gruenfeld Defence|
|Morozevich, Alexander||- Ponomariov, Ruslan||½-½||55||A45||Trompowsky|
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