Online Speed Chess underway

LET’S PLAY CHESS - Edgar De Castro (The Philippine Star) - November 8, 2020 - 12:00am

The $100,000 Online Speed Chess Championship, a 16-player knockout match event, is underway.

Norwegian world champion Magnus Carlsen reached the quarterfinals by defeating Iranian qualifier Parham Maghsoodloo, 24.0-5.0.

Carlsen, who was beaten only thrice in 29 games, will be looking to win his second speed chess title after finishing first in the 2017 edition.

Frenchman Maxime Vachier-Lagrave also advanced, beating Indian teenager Nihal Sarin, 16.5-11.5., while Russian qualifier Vladimir Fedoseev moved into the last eight by outlasting 17-year-old Iranian exile Alireza Firouzja, 15.0-14,0.

In other matches which will run up to Nov. 16, US champion Wesley So is pitted against 16-year-old Noridek Abdusattorov of Uzbekistan; Ian Nepomniachtchi (Russia) vs. Levon Aronian (Armenia); American Hikaru Nakamura, the defending champion, will take on Armenian Haik Martirosyan; Fabiano Caruana (USA) will meet Poland’s Jan-Krysztof Duda; and Dutchman Anish Giri will battle Russian Vladislav Artemiev.

Format will be blitz of five minutes plus one second increment, blitz of three minutes plus one second increment and bullet chess of one minute plus one second increment.

All games can be viewed live with commentaries at www.chess.com and various chess websites.

* * *

A pair of pawns on adjacent files that separated from all other pawns are known as “Hanging Pawns,”a term coined by the first world chess champion Wilhelm Steinitz.

The hanging pawns, as usual, are a liability, for they might become weak and be subjected to attack, as seen in this recent game played at the 2020 Online Speed Chess Championship.

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