Chinese Championship heats up!
3 Players Tied with 6/8
The Chinese Championship is taking place between the 19th and the 30th of December in Xinghua. (The Women’s Championship is taking place at the same time) The format is a 12-player round robbin. Play is the relatively fast 90 minutes for the entire game, plus 30 seconds per move. That is, there is no 40 move time control which is common in elite events.
As we can see, 3 players are at 6 points from 8 games, followed by 4 players at a distant 4 points each. Note that the Women’s World Champion, Ju Wenjun, is participating!
Considering that this is the year of the pandemic, the championship has managed to attract a reasonable number of the top active Chinese elite players. (See above chart) Seven (7) of the top 20 players are playing. I assume that Ding and Wang are not participating because of their preparations for the second part of the Candidates Tournament which is slated to take place in the spring.
Games, Tactics and Critical Moments
The Chinese Championship usually produces lots of exciting and hard fought games. This year’s event is no exception. No doubt the faster than usual time control has had its effects in lessing the level of play (defence especially) towards the end of the session, but this is something that we spectators have become used to by now…
Avoiding the Trap
Lu, Shanglei – Bai, Jinshi
Ju,Wenjun – Wen,Yang
Magical Rook Moves
Xu, Xiangyu – Yu, Yangyi