Almasi & So Tied for First After Three Rounds at Capablanca Memorial

  • PeterDoggers
  • on 2014. 05. 11. 5:28.

The Capablanca Memorial is underway in Havana, Cuba and after three rounds GMs Zoltan Almasi of Hungary and Wesley So of the Philippines are in shared first place in the Elite Group. They have both scored one win and two draws. The tournament is held for the 49th time.

The 2014 Capablanca Memorial is again taking place at the Habana Riviera hotel, located on the famous Malecón. The broad esplanade, roadway and seawall along the coast in Havana is still the iconic place where tourists stroll, fishermen cast their lures and prostitutes find their clients.

Each day, in the Salón Internacional of the hotel, three games are played in the Elite Group (a 6-player double round robin with Leinier Dominguez, Vassily Ivanchuk, Wesley So, Paco Vallejo, Zoltan Almasi, and Lazaro Bruzon) and another five in the Premier Group (a round robin with Isan Reynaldo Ortiz Suarez, Emilio  Cordova, Yuniesky Quesada Perez, Bator Sambuev, Yusnel Bacallao Alonso, Sebastian Bogner, Carlos Antonio Hevia Alejano, Yasser Quesada Perez, Yuri Gonzalez Vidal, and Danyyil Dvirnyy).

At the opening ceremony. R-L Dominguez, his wife, Almasi, Vallejo, Ivanchuk | Photo María del Carmen Ramón / Cubahora 

Already in the first round the two top seeds of the Elite Group faced each other: five times winner Vassily Ivanchuk and Cuba's number one (and world #10) Leinier Dominguez. The Ukrainian went for the Open variation of the Ruy Lopez but Dominguez is too much of a theoretician to be surprised by something like that. He kept the advantage well into the endgame, but Ivanchuk didn't make any big mistakes.

So vs Bruzon and Vallejo vs Almasi were also undecided, and in the second round two more games ended in draws: Almasi-Dominguez and Bruzon-Ivanchuk. Wesley grabbed the lead with a win over Paco Vallejo in a Berlin Endgame. It seems that the Spanish GM was close to draw just before the end.

Wesley So | Photo María del Carmen Ramón / Cubahora

In the third round there were again two (fighting) draws: Vallejo-Bruzon, and Dominguez-So. The game of the day was Ivanchuk-Almasi where the Ukrainian went for an interesting, long-term sacrifice which in fact had been played once before. Ivanchuk played the attack better than Zelcic in 2001, but in the end the sac is probably not correct. But it took amazing defensive skills by Almasi to prove it! The Hungarian thus caught So in first place.

It was only Ivanchuk's third loss in all Capablanca Memorials together (+28 –3 =33)!

After an early loss, can Chuky do it again in Havana? | Photo María del Carmen Ramón / Cubahora

Capablanca Memorial 2014 | Round 3 Standings

# Name Rtg Perf 1 2 3 4 5 6 Pts SB
1 So,Wesley 2731 2837 phpfCo1l0.png ½ ½ 1 2.0/3 2.50
2 Almasi,Zoltan 2693 2860 phpfCo1l0.png ½ ½ 1 2.0/3 2.25
3 Dominguez Perez,Leinier 2768 2726 ½ ½ phpfCo1l0.png ½ 1.5/3 2.50
4 Bruzon Batista,Lazaro 2682 2728 ½ phpfCo1l0.png ½ ½ 1.5/3 2.00
5 Vallejo Pons,Francisco 2700 2582 0 ½ ½ phpfCo1l0.png 1.0/3 1.75
6 Ivanchuk,Vassily 2753 2594 0 ½ ½ phpfCo1l0.png 1.0/3 1.50

Each day the rounds start at 3pm local time (3 pm Eastern, noon Pacific, 9pm Central European). You can follow the games live here. Round reports in Spanish can be found at columnadeportiva.

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4 szavazat


  • 2 év ezelőtt


    Wesly So wins 49th Capablanca Memorial Chess Tourney!!!

    Go Wesly Go!!!

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    please up-date us the capablanca tournament  tnx!

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    The question is, how does GM So feel about representing his country? I hear that he wants to change his federation to the US or Canada because this benefits his chess more.

  • 2 év ezelőtt



    No not me. I'm a filipino but I do not agree about my countrymens way of admiration. Crying PROUD about a particulary race sounds Racist to me that's why that annoying "Proud to be Filipino" phrase provokes flames in every forum on the net. Race should NOT matter and for that I have a better idea to my fellow pinoys.  MABUHAY PILIPINAS! sounds less harmful.

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    @chessrazor:The stupid envy and hate; it is their way of admiring.,,,mind ur own f,,,kng business,,leave them alone

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    Not sure that Lawrence Trent is playing in Cuba jhillary...would of thought if he was he would have been in the Premier Group, results of which you can check here»»»

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    nice games wesley... you can win this tournament 

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    thanks for posting.  

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    brace yourselves, Proud to pe Filipino comments are coming.

  • 2 év ezelőtt



    Have you noticed how Lawrence Trent is making out? 

    Lawrence said (on the air during Shamkir) that he had hopes of getting his third (I think it was) GM Norm at the Capablanca.  We can't find any results on the web, making us wonder if the CIA is jamming Cuban websites.

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    @Peter  Thank you for rectifying re Sebastian!  I'm following his tournament, that's why I noticed.  Smile

    Too bad that they only transmit the games of the Elite group live. And even this is technically a bit unstable. Chessbomb and Chess Arena both are very whacky and laggy tonight (Sunday 05/11).

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    I guess this doesn't matter much, but just to clarify the discussion in the thread, under way is written as two words in the adverb form in both US English and British English. You might be able to find a dictionary that disagrees, but Webster's unabridged (or Merriam-Webster) is the preferred dictionary for most major editorial styles in the US (e.g., APA, Chicago, MLA, AMA), and I believe Oxford is the standard in BrE. 

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    @TomHaegin Thx, I made a mistake with commas; I've corrected the list of the Premier Group now.

  • 2 év ezelőtt



    It's optional, one word or two......

    1. 1.
      having started and in progress; being done or carried out.
      "the remodeling should be underway by July"
    2. 2.
      (of a boat) moving through the water.
      "the ship was so huge and silent, I hadn't realized we had gotten underway"


    As in "Chucky's comeback is not underway yet."

  • 2 év ezelőtt



  • 2 év ezelőtt


    "Under way" is two words.

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    Very nice Peter. Thx! Still pulling for Chucky! Not convinced in Round 3, as neither was Almasi :), about 14.Nf6+. I think the immediate 17...d5 and later 22...Be3! & 23...c5 saved the day, for the inevitable long diagonal opening. One is left with the impression, as it really appears Almasi calculated accurately having seen much of this far in advance, ...thus allowing 24...Rxe7 25. fxe7+ Bd4 interposition. One can also feel that Chucky had experienced success with this (perhaps informally, OTB) and played it with confidence. That game exhibits a wonderful "fighting spirit of chess" of Capablanca's (pre-engine) day, in both players! Fun stuff! Thx Peter!

  • 2 év ezelőtt



  • 2 év ezelőtt


    Ivanchuk got too ambitious in the third round game. Almasi defended the attack precisely and it was clear that it was either make or break for Wassily. At least in the computer it was unsound from the beginning. It would be interesting to know if Almasi got really worried or found the correct defence with relative ease.

  • 2 év ezelőtt


    Factual error or omission: in the Premier Group, there is German GM Sebastian Bogner playing as well (but he is playing for Swiss Federation these days).

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