Team World victorious over Kazakhstan’s top women in rapid

On the second day of the women’s rapid tournament, the team representing the World extended their lead against Kazakhstan to 34,5:29,5 to win the rapid

In one of the most unusual chess events in recent years, the team made of up top women players from around the world defeated Kazakhstan’s women’s team.

Both teams have eight players, made up of four top women world players and four women players from the youth categories.

Team World was leading after the first day, having won in three out of the four rounds played and achieving a lead of 18,5 points to 13,5.

The second day saw four more rounds being played in Astana’s International Financial Centre.

Team World, made up of well-known players including four-time women’s world champion Hou Yifan, Nana Dzagnidze, and Harika Dronavalli continued confidently as they won in the first round of the day, with 4,5 to 3,5.

Team Kazakhstan managed to strike back in the sixth round, with the top four boards collecting three and a half points in that round! However, in rounds seven and eight, the team representing players from around the world managed to maintain the advantage and win.

After eight rounds of the rapid tournament, Team World leads with 34,5:29,5.

The full results of the rapid tournament can be found here.

“This match is a great endeavour in promoting women’s chess. I do have a dream that one day a woman will play in a match for world champion and this event is one step closer to achieving that”, said Dana Reizniece-Ozola, captain of Team World and the Deputy Chair of FIDE’s Management Board.

“Matches like this one are not only exciting for the chess world but are very interesting for people in general. There are a lot of emotions. Kazakhstan’s team is very strong – they have Bibisara Assaubayeva, Zhansaya Abdumalik, Dinara Saduakassova and several strong young players. We – team world – have Hou Yifan, Nana Dzagnidze, Harika Dronavalli and other top players. The first two days showed that the tension is there. Of course, it’s important to participate but – despite Kazakhstan’s great hospitality here as hosts – we’d still like to win”, Reizniece-Ozola said.

The final part of the match will take place on Wednesday, 18th April, where the players will test each other in Blitz, with a time control of three minutes and a bonification of two seconds per move.

The total prize fund is 50,000 USD the winning team receives 30,000 USD (20,000 USD equally shared by women players, 10,000 USD equally shared by youth players).

Text: Milan Dinic

Photo: Anna Shtourman