21 t/m 30 December 2016

Chess Festival Groningen

Nederlands Nederlands

Day 8

Group A

Tiviakov started the round half a point ahead of the field. As he was having white versus Gleizerov he had a nice opportunity to go into the last with a lead. Everything seemed to go according to plan. He Played a Tarrasch against the French and allowed Qxb2. Urban wisdom dictates: "never take on b2 even if it is good". Erik Hoeksema changed this to: "Always take on b2, even if it is bad!" The queen was trapped and white captured black's good bishop. White got the opportunity with 19.Rb3 to trap the queen completely and liquidate into a winning position. Sergei would probably not have that much difficulties converting that position.

Norm candidates

Result needed for a norm

Schoppen, Casper 1 0  
Chu, Ruotong   1 0
Xiang, Zeyu   ½  
Maatman, Nick   ½  
Van Foreest, Lucas   ½  
Ypma, Peter   1  
Zwirs, Nico   1  
Warmerdam, Max   1  


Tiviakov stays in the lead - round report day 7

Group A

Jinshi Bai - Sergei Tiviakov was a rather uneventful game, you could say Bai took a 'bye', with his futile attempts to seek little pluses in a Catalan opening. Tivakov was never in danger, which means he stays in the lead of the tournament.

The Chigaev - Karthikeyan game was a long one. White accumulated some pluses, nothing fancy though. In the endgame, with pressure rising, the young talented Indian wasn’t able to hold a position with unequal bishops as White's king found a way into his position using the weakened white squares on the kingside. A pity for Karthikeyan, but a nice win for Chigaev!

Round 6 - Tiviakov is running away

A group

Today in round 6, the Groninger Sergey Tiviakov could take the sole lead if he’d beat Maksim Chigaev with the white pieces. We know Sergey likes to obtain a small plus and very gradually improve his position. Does this mean it is wise to ignore your instincts (if we are to believe commentator Grisja Kodentsov) and play a boring opening, trade queens, and even part with the bishop pair? The game answers this question.

Round report day 5

December the 26th is in the UK known as Boxing Day, which would be an apt way to describe this round's fighting chess. 

The main attention was of course drawn to the top board, where Chigaev and Liu battled it out. The opening started similar to Popov - Liu from the third round, but this time a Nimzo-Indian structure appeared. Chigaev lured Liu into playing 15.cxd4 by retreating his bishop. After this the white bishop pair proved to be very dangerous. He won back his pawn with interest, and quickly demolished Black's king.

Opening time and commentary

The Sports Centre will be open from 11:00 on monday the 26th.

The commentary sessions (dutch) for round 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 will start at 14:00. 

Blood on the board in round 3

Group A

In what was the last round to be played at the first playing venue, the Postillion Hotel in Haren, many attractive games full of fighting chess were seen (note: the rest of the tournament will be played at the familiar Sportcentrum RUG & Hanze). Ulybin - Zwirs became a wild tactical battle in a King's Indian, where White soon got the upper hand because of his active minor pieces. Ulybin found all the forcing lines, starting with a queen sacrifice to gain material. Black had no chance and quickly saw all his other pieces disappear from the board.

Round report day 2, match Afek - Hilwerda

Afek - Hilwerda

Today's big question was whether Jonas Hilwerda could come back from being one game down against Yochanan Afek. With the white pieces in the first game of the second day he went for it. In a Sicilian a queen swap led to an early endgame and by pushing his c-pawn forward instead of opening lines against the black king, Afek got an advantage. Jonas defended well, and after an inaccuracy by black he managed to win a pawn reaching a won rook endgame in the process. But time wasn't on his side. The young player missed a mate in two and had to expect defeat as he saw his last seconds tick away. Then Afek showed his sportsmanship by offering a draw, which was of course gladly accepted.

Many upsets in opening round of Chess Festival Groningen

After a slight delay due to a small hiccup in the pairings, tournament director Koen Lambrechts opened the first round with a short speech. The opening phase of the round didn't give any quick results and after just over an hour the first results slowly came in. So far no upsets were recorded, but that would change as the afternoon progressed.

Tournament Location

For the common guests of our tournament, please be aware that the tournament will start at a different location. The first three rounds will take place at the Postillion Hotel Haren, Emmalaan 33 Haren.

Special Youth Prize

A few days ago hotels.nl granted the organization with a special youth prize. The winner of this prize get's a ticket (value €1000) for a simul against non other than Magnus Carlsen. All money raised with this Simul will be granted to the research program on craniofacial anomalies. The organization is still contemplating on the exact criteria for the prize.

B- and C-group Merged

Because the number of participants in the C-group was very low, the organizers decided to merge the B and C group into one. There will be two different prize funds and more diversity in opponents.



Hi, have you met... our fantastic commentators?

All of them are Groninger Chess Icons in their own right, and all of them are full of wisdom about chess and life:
The German (top-left), The Philosopher (top-right), The Russian (bottom-left) and The Champion (bottom-right).


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Playing Venue

From 21 - 23 December:
Postillion hotel Haren
Emmalaan 33, 9752 KS Haren
Tel: 050 534 7041

And 24, 26 - 30 December:
Sportcentrum RUG & Hanze
Blauwborgje 16, 9747 AC Groningen


Click here to see the arrangement Postillion Hotel Haren offers you.

Tournament Entry

Only by submitting the online entry form on this website. The entry fee must be payed by a banktransfer to account NL26 INGB 0007 1113 01, in the name of Stichting Schaakfestival Groningen, Netherlands. BIC (or Swift) code: INGBNL2A. Payment at the playing venue is possible, but only during registration prior to the first round. If you haven't completed your payment at that time you will not be allowed to participate the tournament.


All information about the last editions can be found on the former website: www.schaakstadgroningen.nl


Tournament director: Koen Lambrechts
Tel: +31 (0)6 17650767

Chess Festival Groningen 2016
DateMatch Hilwerda-AfekOpen Tournament A, B, C4-person TounamentCompactStudent TournamentYouth Grand PrixCommentary
21-12-2016Round 1 and 2Round 1Round 1
22-12-2016Round 3 and 4Round 2Round 2
23-12-2016Round 3Round 3
24-12-2016Round 4Entire tournamentFM Grigori Kodentsov
25-12-2016Merry Christmas!
26-12-2016Round 5Round 1FM Grigori Kodentsov
27-12-2016Round 6Round 2FM Grigori Kodentsov and FM Erik-Jan Hummel
28-12-2016Round 7Round 3Entire tournamentFM Erik-Jan Hummel and Jan Joris Groenewold
29-12-2016Round 8Round 4IM Gert Ligterink and FM Erik-Jan Hummel
30-12-2016Round 9Round 5IM Gert Ligterink and Jan Joris Groenewold

Open A (>2000)

Prize fund: € 6000,-
Entry fee: € 60,-
GM's, IM's and WGM's free.

Open B (<2100 en >1600)

Prize fund: € 1500,-
Entry fee: € 60,-

Open C (<1700)

Prize fund: € 750,-
Entry fee: € 60,-

The Open A, B and C will play a 9 round Swiss tournament.
In case of insufficient participation we reserve the right to merge groups B and C.


In Open B and Open C a bye (half a point) is possible in one of the rounds 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5. Please request this bye on your entry form under 'Questions'.

Playing schedule

21 December 11.00 – 12.00 hrs Registration
21 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Round 1
22 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Round 2
23 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Round 3
24 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Round 4
25 December   Rest day
26 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Round 5
27 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Round 6
28 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Round 7
29 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Round 8
30 December 11.00 – 17.00 hrs Round 9
30 December ± 18.00 hrs Prizegiving ceremony

Time control: 40 moves in 90 minutes + 30 minutes for the remainder of the game + an increment of 30 seconds per move from move 1.

Groups of 4, based on rating. Requests not to be play in the same group can be send to info@chessfestival.nl

Prize fund each group: € 45,-
Entry fee: € 15,-

Playing schedule

21 December 11.00 – 12.00 hrs Registration
21 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Ronde 1
22 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Ronde 2
23 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Ronde 3
  Followed by prizegiving ceremony

Time control: 40 moves in 90 minutes + 30 minutes for the remainder of the game + an increment of 30 seconds per move from move 1.

Groningen Compact

A five round Swiss tournament in groups of about 40 players, split up according to playing strength.
First prize in each group: € 200,-
prize fund per group: € 600,-.
Entry fee: € 35,-


A bye (half a point) is possible only in round 1 and must be requested as well as confirmed by e-mail before December 24th.

Playing schedule

26 December 11.00 – 12.00 hrs Registration
26 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Ronde 1
27 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Ronde 2
28 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Ronde 3
29 December 13.00 – 19.00 hrs Ronde 4
30 December 11.00 – 17.00 hrs Ronde 5
30 December ± 18.00 hrs Prizegiving ceremony

Time control: 40 moves in 90 minutes + 30 minutes for the remainder of the game + an increment of 30 seconds per move from move 1.

Students Christmas Chess

This tournament is organized for students who like to play chess, but have never competed in official tournaments or competitions. Any student (Rijksuniversiteit Groningen (including PhD) or Hanze Hogeschool Groningen) who doesn't have a FIDE or KNSB rating can participate. Prizes will be awarded based on individual scores and on the score of the best 3 players of each student association. For each student association, 1 player with a rating of <1501 can participate. This player cannot win any individual prize, but his score does count for the total score of the association. If you are unfamiliar with the term 'rating' you most likely don't have one, so don't worry.

Entry is free and you can register by sending an e-mail to info@chessfestival.nl including your name, student number and (optionally) student association. To confirm your participation you have to register in person on the 24th of December at 12.45 in the playing hall; bring your student card .

Individual Prizes: 1. €150 2. €75 3. €50
Association Prize: €120 for the winning association (half goes to the three players directly, half goes to the association)

In case of a shared 1st, 2nd or 3rd place the prizes are shared. Rules for the Association Prize: The points of the 3 best scoring players of one association are added. The highest scoring association wins the prize.

Sportcentrum RUG & Hanze Blauwborgje 16, 9747 AC Groningen

Playing schedule

24 December 12.45 – 13.00 hrs Registration
24 December 13.00 – 13.40 hrs Ronde 1
24 December 13.50 – 14.30 hrs Ronde 2
24 December 14.40 – 15.20 hrs Ronde 3
24 December 15.30 – 16.10 hrs Ronde 4
24 December 16.20 – 17.00 hrs Ronde 5
24 December ± 17.00 hrs Prizegiving ceremony


Youth Grand Prix

In the North of the Netherlands each year a Grand Prix cyclus is organized for younger youth players.
On Wednesday the 28th of December one of these tournaments will take place during the Chess Festival Groningen. More information: here


After Chess

Like previous editions there will be After Chess during the tournament, organized in chess cafe Proeflokaal Hooghoudt. The address: Gedempte Zuiderdiep 61, 9711 HC Groningen. The program will be published on the Facebook of cafe Proeflokaal Hooghoudt.



Our Chess Festival is situated in the student sports complex. This offers a perfect opportunity to exercise both mind and body. During the Chess Festival there will be opportunity to play squash or football.


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