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Round 1 report: Poland defeats Ukraine and takes early lead
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The World Women Team Championship began today at the Wang Jiang Hotel in Chengdu and the first round was already plenty of chess drama. Victory of Poland over defending champion Ukraine with 3,5:0,5 score became a big sensation. The encounter between Jolanta Zawadska and Anna Ushenina finished dramatically as Anna Ushenina lost her game on time. Another unexpected result came in the match India-Kazakhstan. The favorites of the pair led by Humpy Koneru were defeated by young team from Kazakhstan with 2,5:1,5 score.  The key match between Russia and Georgia finished in a draw but not before Russian players missed a good chance to defeat their opponents. Egyptian WGM Wafa Shrook outplayed the much higher rated WGM Sabina-Francesca Foisor but nevertheless Egypt lost to the USA with 3:1 score. Chinese fans can be happy with the start of the championship as their favorite team won the first match against Armenia with 3:1 score.

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Another unfortunate accident happened to Ukrainian player Anna Ushenina – she didn’t press her clock correctly and lost on time.

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The Chief Arbiter of the Championship Takis Nikolopoulos clarified the situation:
“Anna Ushenina explained that she had pressed her clock but the flag fell. The clock was checked in front of both players and the captain of Ukrainian team and it was found it was working properly. According to the article 6.10 A every indication given by the clocks is considered to be conclusive in the absence of any evident defect. So the result remained the same and Ushenina lost the game. Most probably Anna didn’t press the clock correctly because she was in the time trouble. There was no appeal after the end of the game”.
Anna’s unfortunate loss was the beginning of further troubles for the Ukrainian team as Anna Muzychuk and Inna Gaponenko were defeated by Monika Socko and Marta Bartel respectively.

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USA came close to 4:0 score against Egypt, but Sabina-Francesca Foisor started to make mistakes in a winning position and suddenly lost to Wafa Shrook.

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Harika Dronavalli made a good start for India by winning relatively easily against Danara Saduakassova. However, the positions of Indian players on the last boards looked suspicious. In order to equalize the score the top player Humpy Koneru had to win against young but already well-known player from Kazakhstan Zhansaya Abdumalik but failed to find the right way to victory in the pawn endgame. The match finished 2,5:1,5 in favor of Kazakhstan.

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The bottom two boards for the Chinese team signed two victories, while Ju Wenjun and Tan Zhongyi drew the games against top seeds of Armenian team. As a result China outplayed the Armenian team with a 3,5-0,5 score.

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In the last match of the evening, the Georgian team held the Russian team to a draw. Valentina Gunina was defeated by Bela Khotenashvili on the first board and Alexandra Goriachkina could only even up the score with a victory against Nino Batsiashvili. After Pogonina drew with Meri Arabidze everything was decided in the final game of the match. After stubborn defence Lela Javakishvili saved queen’s ending against Alexandra Kosteniuk.

The city of Chengdu in China is hosting the Women's World Chess Team Championship from April 18th to 28. The organizers are Chinese Chess Association, FIDE World Chess Federation, with the support of Board and Card Administrative Center of General Administration of Sport of China and Chengdu Municipal Government.
© FIDE 2015    |