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Seniors chess news

Provisional team lists are now online for the World Senior Team Championships to be held in Rhodes, Greece, which starts tomorrow. Currently 26 teams have entered the 50+ tournament and 28 have entered the 65+.

USA will be defending the 50+ title they won narrowly last year on tiebreak. ChessBase recently had a feature article about seniors chess in the U.S., including the announcement of a 10-player round-robin USA Seniors Championship to be held at Saint Louis in July.

This team event immediately follows the European Senior Individual Championships which ended yesterday at the same venue. The new 65+ Open Champion is GM Jens Kristiansen (Denmark) scoring 8/9, with GM Yuri Balashov (Russia) second on 7 points, while IM Nathan Birnboim (Israel) took bronze on tie-break with 6.5 points. England's Tony Stebbings (6/9) won sixth prize. In the separate 65+ Championship for women, WGM Elena Fatalibekova emerged victorious.

Zurab Sturua (Georgia) won the 50+ Open Championship on tiebreak from Milos Pavlovic (Serbia), both on 7.5 points. The bronze was won by Sergei Terentiev (Latvia) with 6.5. English GM Keith Arkell was fifth. Special mention should be made of the seventh prize-winner FM Terry Chapman (England) who was sole leader on 4/4 after beating GM Henrik Danielsen and then drew with Sturua, but had to play successive masters with Black in the critical rounds 6 and 7.

There were insufficient entries for a separate 50+ Women's Championship so the ladies played in the Open. The new champion, on tie-break, is WGM Tatiana Grabuzova (Russia) who scored 5.5 points. For full results and photographs see the report on the European Chess Union website.

Details have now been published for the FIDE World Senior Individual Championships in Bucharest, capital of Romania, scheduled for 11-24 November 2019. Please see our updated calendar for details of this and other future tournaments.

We still believe that the European Senior Team Championships will be held in Croatia in September, will indeed be the Adriatic island of Mali Losinj (and not, as previously announced, Sveti Martin na Muri). We really expected that detaiulks would have been made available in Rhodes. The continued lack of an official announcement of this event is worrying and will probably lead to the entry being small, if it is not cancelled altogether. The new venue is on the FIDE calendar and the Croatian federation website calendar, but we await the official regulations for the tournament, accommodation and travel.

The English Senior Championships were held in Solihull, Birmingham, from 4-7 April. Kevin Bowmer won the 65+ Championship with 5.5/6 in a field of 40 players and IM Paul Littlewood won the 50+ title with 5.5/6, a full point clear of the runner-up in a 24-player field.

It was rumoured in Bled that FIDE may reduce the length of the world individual championships to nine rounds but nothing has officially been said about this and this year's event will be 11 rounds again, with a rest day after round five. Please keep an eye on this page and our calendar page for any changes.

The 2018 FIDE World Senior Championships were played in Bled, Slovenia, from 18-29 November. The new 65+ champions are GM Nona Gaprindashvili (women) and GM Vlastimil Jansa (Open). The 50+ champions are WGM Elvira Berend and GM Karen Movszisian. Please read our full illustrated report. Jansa and Movszisian have thus qualified for FIDE's new Super-Swiss, at the Isle of Man in October, which will decide one place for the 2020 Candidates tournament.

The FIDE Congress has awarded the 2020 World Senior Individual Championships to Italy, to be played in Assisi at dates yet to be announced. This is a historic and attractive venue, which we understand greatly restored after devastating earthquakes in 1997. We are relieved not to be going back to Acqui Terme.

Information about senior tournaments in Germany can now be found at this German Chess Federation web page. Note that the age qualification rule for German Senior events is usually 60+ for men and 55+ for women, but they may be changing to the international age groups.

Other Seniors Chess News

Moves began in 2017 to establish a FIDE Seniors Commission to improve conditions for 50+ and 65+ players in future FIDE competitions. A website was developed for this purpose; please read the statement there by former European Senior Champion, IM Jan Rooze. So far as we awre aware there have been no recent developments.

If you have Seniors chess news you would like posted here, or announcements of future events, please email Tim Harding.


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