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After intense 9 rounds, we reach the day that we meet the new European Champion in each of the 4 categories.
In the Open 65+ category the dutchman Nico Schouten, after being matched in 1st place in the penultimate round, did value his excellent form and won his last match, granting the title of European Champion in a great game and a great tournament where he won more than 50 elo points. With a total sum of 7.5 points in 9 possible, he was joined on the podium by two Russian players Vladimir Beznosikov with 7 points and Alexander Kuyindzhi 6.5.
In the Open 50+ category, the english Grand Master Keith Arkell kept the performance demonstrated in this final stage, ensuring a draw in the last game and the title of European Champion. He totaled 7 points from 9 possible in a very strong and competitive level, with a total of 36 players. The russian Evgenij Kalegin won 2nd place, level on points with georgian Zurab Sturua, both with 6.5 points, which overcome to 4 players with 6 points, a very equilibrium noticed in the first 7.
Up: Nico Schouten (Netherlands) (O 65+) and Valentina Kozlovskaya (Russia) (F 65+)
Down: Keith Arkell (England) (O 50+) and Tatyana Fomina (Estonia) (F 50+)
In the category Ladies 65+, russian Valentina Kozlovskaya player, after having isolated on top of the standings in the penultimate round, won again in the last round, securing the title of European Champion with 7.5 points in 9 possible. To complete the final podium, she is followed by a very strong Nona Gaprindashvili (Georgia) and Ludmila Tsifanskaya (Israel) respectively 2nd and 3rd place, both with 7 points from 9 possible.
In the category Ladies 50+, the estonian Tatyana Fomina, even losing her last match, secured the title with 6.5 points in 9 possible, with the georgian Tsiala Kasoshvili stay in 2nd place, with the same points as the 1st ranked , losing in the tiebreakers. In 3rd place, the russian Galina Strutinskaya kept the place that had, keeping her in the final podium with 6 points.
After these decisive conquest of titles and games, Closing Ceremony and Award of Prizes and Medals took place at 18:00, with the presence of the famous chess player Garry Kasparov. After the final closing speeches, all participants were presented to an excellent performance of Fado concert and some a nice goodbye in Oporto Wine.
Tomorrow is a rest day, returning the games on 19th and 20th March for the European Senior Chess Championship 2014 - Rapid and in the 21th March for the European Senior Chess Championship 2014 - Blitz.
After the European Senior Chess Championship 2014, in Classic matches, having been held from 9 to 17 March, in 19 to March 20 the European Rapid Chess Championships 2014 toke place. This championship had in total 45 players, divided in two different categories, 65+ and 50+, with female players included in absolute competition. It will be played in 9 Rounds, 5 on 1st day and 4 on the 2nd day.
A total of 45 players from 13 different countries participated (28 in 65+ and 15 in 50+), being the vast majority repeaters of the Classic tournaments. From the 4 European Champions consecrated on the 17th of March, 3 are present in this European Championships to try to repeat the feat achieved in the Classic tournaments.
Both tournaments reveled very intensive and active, with a noticed equilibrium in the several games, with the presence of 21 players with international titles, nearly 50% of all the participants.
Up: Open 65+ and Open 50+
Down: Female 65+ and Female 50+
In 65+ category the European Champion is romanian Mihai Suba, with an excellent tournament with 8 points in 9 possible without giving great opportunities to opponents. The lithuanian Algimantas Butnorious won 2nd place on the podium, having stayed ahead of the georgian Nona Gaprindashvili, that during most of the league walked in the podium places, accumulating 3rd place Absolute with the 1st place Female. In the Female standing she was followed by the also georgian Tamar Khmiadashvili and russian Valentina Kozlovskaya , both with 5 points from 9 possible.
In the 50+ category 50+, russian Evegenij Kalegin, after the 2nd place in the Classic tournament wins the title of European Champion Rapid , gaining 7.5 points in 9 possible, in a very consistent performance. In 2nd place was Antonio Fernandes, one of the best portuguese players with 7 points , the same as the georgian Zurab Sturua who won the same place that we won the Classic tournament. The female classification is composed by georgian Tsiala Kasoshvili with 5.5 points from 9 possible, that after the 2nd place in the Classic tournament wins the title of European Champion, followed by Nino Gurieli and Tatiana Bogumil , with 5 and 4.5 points respectively.
We reach the last day of these fantastic 12 days of chess in this big event, with the realization of the European Senior Blitz Chess Championships 2014, attended by 35 players, divided in to 2 different categories, 65+ (18 players) and 50+ (17 players). This Championship was played in just one afternoon, with a total of 9 rounds, with a high rhythm of game. 10 different countries were represented, again with a high number of players with titles with a total of 20, where the portuguese players have once again 8 participants in each category.
In the 65+ category, we knew a new winner, russian Yury Gorshkov, with a one-point lead over the 2nd and 3rd place. The israeli Mark Tseitlin guarantee 2nd place, followed by the georgian Nona Gaprindashvili that after securing 3rd place in Rapid, also wins secured in Blitz. In the women's rankings, Nina Gaprindashvili wons the competition, completing the podium the also georgian Tamar Khmiadashvili and the russian Valentina Kozlovskaya, the same podium in the Rapid tournament.
Up: Open 65+ and Open 50+
Down: Female 65+ and Female 50+
In the 50+ category a fantastic result for portuguese colors, with Antonio Fróis, from the club AX Gaia, won the title of European Champion. He took soon the lead and with a constant and powerful performance ensures this important title. In 2nd place was the georgian Zurab Sturua and completing the podium the russian Galina Strutinskaia in 3rd place, and also the female winner. Completing the podium was the female winner of the Rapid, the georgian Tsiala Kasoshvili followed by the also georgian Nino Gurieli.
So we come to the end of the European Senior Chess Championship 2014, held in Oporto, the first organization of an official championship of the ECU (European Chess Association) and FIDE (World Chess Federation) calendar on Portuguese soil, in the year that the Portuguese Chess Federation celebrates its 87th birthday.
We had 12 intense days of chess, almost non-stop, with the organization of 3 different European Senior Chess Championships (with rhythms of play in Classic, Rapid and Blitz), with a total of 12 new European Champion. In the sum of all the tournaments and categories we had 195 participations from 24 different countries. A tremendous success, brightened by the presence of Garry Kasparov in the Closing Ceremony and Award of Prizes and Medals.