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Page history last edited by Paul Leblanc 5 years, 7 months ago

BC and Washington Teams Meet in Historic Match

There have been a number of one day challenge matches between British Columbia and Washington State between 1946 and 2007.  There has never before been a multi day FIDE rated round robin.


The cities of Vancouver and Victoria had not played a match since 1947 when last year a team of five Vancouver masters triumphed over Victoria’s top players in a five round event hosted by Victoria Chess. 


Over the weekend of 13-15 January Victoria hosted a much more ambitious set of challenge matches involving two BC teams, two Washington teams, a Vancouver team and a Victoria team.  Each team comprised 5 players competing in a Scheveningen style tournament where each team member played every player of the opposing team.


The BC Team led by IM Bindi Cheng was favoured to win the match against Washington but faced tougher than expected competition from a determined group of Washington masters led by FM Bryce Tiglon.  Washington led the match until the very last game when Bindi wrestled a full point from the diminutive junior Anthony He, tying the match 12.5 to 12.5.


BC Team B had a tougher time of it, trailing the entire weekend to Washington Team B.  The BC team made it close with a superior showing in the last round but could not close the gap, with Washington B winning 13-12.  The only perfect score of the weekend was notched by a young lady originally from Mongolia, Badamkhand Norovsambuu, who scored 5-0 against BC Team B.


The fiercest competition was between the Victoria team led by WFM Valeria Gansvind and the Vancouver team led by FM John Doknjas.  After trailing most of the way the Victoria team pulled ahead in the last round to win 13-12, avenging last year’s loss.


The tournament featured an unusual number of FIDE flags.  In addition to Canada and the USA:

Badamkhand Norovosambuu (Mongloia)

Kenjii Hiebert (Japan)

Valeria Gansvind (Estonia)

Francisco Barranco (Spain)

Oliver Schulte (Germany)

Grigoriy Morozov (Russia)

Zulkifar Sali (England)


There were four players present who participated in the last BC vs Washington match in 2007:

Bindi Cheng, Roger Patterson, Josh Sinanan (who is President of the Washington State Chess Federation) and David Bragg of Washington State.


Some creative measures were necessary to fill all the seats on six teams and team composition was fluid right up to the night before round one.  Kai Richardson of Williams Lake and Francisco Barranco who is a Spaniard studying at UBC were invited to be members of Team Vancouver.  Kenji Hiebert who lives most of the time in Japan was given a spot on BC Team B.  Most interestingly, Washington Team B had a withdrawal the day before the tournament and Stefan Trandafir of Port Moody graciously accepted a position playing for Washington.  In fact Stefan did very well with a score of 3-2, second best on the team.


The match was co-sponsored by the Washington Chess Federation and Victoria Chess.


In addition to the Scheveningen matches, the 2nd Annual Victoria Open attracted 45 players.  Frank O’Brien of Nanoose Bay and Ross Richardson of Victoria finished in an absolute deadlock for 1st place, having played almost exactly the same opponents.  Ross in an opportune moment seized the trophy at the prize ceremony while Frank was blissfully driving the Malahat.  A clone trophy is being ordered for Frank.

Avinash Kulkarni of Vancouver swept the field in the U1600 section with a 5-0 score and took home the trophy and prize money.

Jeffrey Street of Vancouver claimed the top unrated prize.


Organizer: Paul Leblanc         TD: Stephen Wright, IA





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