SportAccord News - December 13, 2013

World Mind Games Beijing 2013

Day 2



                 Bridge | Chess | Draughts | GoXiangqi (Chinese chess)

The second day of competition was full of excitement and suspense. After intense elite competitions, the first awards ceremony was held this evening presenting medals to Men's and Women's Rapid Chess winners, as well as Draughts Men's and Women's 100 Rapid competition. 


The SportAccord school visits continued today with a group of young students visiting the World Mind Games venue, while SportAccord President, Mr. Marius L. Vizer and World Bridge Federation President, Mr. Giovanni Arrigo Rona attended the Number 5 Beijing School.


A great day for all competitions and cultural experiences.




Cultural Programme: Elementary and Middle school youngsters challenge masters

 (Photo: SportAccord President Mr. Marius L. Vizer at school visit)


Today, SportAccord President Mr. Marius L. Vizer, World Bridge Federation President, Mr. Gianarrigo Rona, IMSA Honorary President Mr. José Damiani, SportAccord Director General Mr. Vlad Marinescu, both Bridge Ambassadors Mr. Fulvio Fantoni and Mrs. Wang Wenfei among others visited the Beijing No. 5 highschool. Fifty children were paired off with the 12 masters to play a few hands of bridge. Teaching bridge in schools is an important part of Beijing’s curriculum to develop the skills of their youth. The visit concluded by SportAccord and WBF officials offering small gifts to the students.


"There is no better way to inspire children than to provide them with the possibility to meet their heroes and play with them live.  SportAccord is happy to facilitate this enriching experience and invite the students to play against top players such as the Bridge Ambassadors", said Mr. Vizer.


 It was once said that “ with music, bridge is a universal language” – and this visit certainly proved the point. It is a medium that can join people from all over the world without any prejudice, where they can play in partnership or as opponents, without understanding each other’s language, but still find enjoyment, challenge and excitement. 


On his return, Mr. Fulvio Fantoni (World No. 1) remarked that he was delighted to see that one of his top tips for newcomers to bridge was being followed at the school – “Relax, enjoy yourself and never forget that bridge is a game”.




Today's cultural programme began early, as 20 children arrived from the Beijing elementary and middle school to visit the World Mind Games venue and compete with Xiangqi champions.


Excited as ever, the children were thrilled to start their matches against the masters of Xiangqi, many of whom are idols in the eyes of these school students. Since an early age the children have been practicing weekly in the school`s Xiangqi programme, steadily improving their game. As the matches were played and the children kept their concentration, some gave the Xiangqi champions a run for their money.


Two champions accepted defeat, as they were outplayed by the students. An excellent bonding experienced was shared and a great atmosphere spread through the halls of the Beijing International Convention Centre.

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Bridge: From one generation to the next  


(Photo: Fulvio Fantoni No. 1, Sinead Bird, Sarah O’Connor, Claudio Nunes No. 2)


 The SportAccord World Mind Games have proved very exciting for two young English players – both Junior Internationals playing in their first International Championship at senior level, Sarah O’Connor and Sinead Bird. An official outing to a school in central Beijing gave them experience on many levels. The bus trip afforded them the opportunity to discuss bidding methods with World Grand Masters Fulvio Fantoni (the World No.1 and Bridge Ambassador) and his partner, No.2 in the world ranking, Claudio Nunes together with Women’s Grand Master and Bridge Ambassador Wang Wenfei.


In the Men's series of the 2013 SportAccord World Mind Games Monaco and Poland reached the Gold medal round. Monaco made sure of their place by virtue of a handsome win in the first match of the day against the overnight leaders, while the Polish squad bounced back in the second match with a vital win against China that gave them a handy lead over their rivals for the other berth in the final. They needed it, as while they were losing badly to the USA China scored a big win against Monaco.

In the Women's series England won all three matches to overtake second placed USA and move to the top of the table. China was virtually certain of a spot in the final when they scored a decisive win over USA in the day's opening match, but a huge loss to England meant they finished the Round Robin in second place.


For Men's Teams Results, click here

For Women's Teams Results, click here

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Chess: Russia leading after the 5th round was played

A battle of champions was at stake as Valentina Gunina from Russia showed fine play in the Women's Rapid Games as she led the ranking table with 1 point after 5 rounds.


With a ranking of 2738, Peter Leko from Hungary was perhaps not the favourite, but with his smart tactics and hunger to win, he reminded those around him of his true potential.


As the women's competition came to a close, Valentina resisted to the pressure and assured herself a good medal. Yifan Hou secured the silver and young prodigy, Ju Wenjun came away with bronze. 


In the men's Rapid Event, Wang Yue faught hard to come back and obtained the gold. Peter Leko, who played a fabulous tournament came second, while Alexander Grischuk followed with bronze. Congratulations to all players who took part in the competition. 



For a summary of today's Men's results, click here

For a summary of today's Woman's results, click here

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Draughts: Second day of Rapid Tournaments keeps viewers stuck to their seats


After a meticulous first day of competition, Grandmasters came out of the gates raring to go. With 3 more rounds to go before the podium, the race remained as tight as it could be. All players were showing their eagerness to win and claim victory over their opponents.


Aleksandr Georgiev (7-time World Champion, current World No. 1) was at the top with a small 1 point advantage. No one could predict how the tournament would end as several players trailed right behind him with 5 points. The reigning champion's play was tested by that of Iurii Anikieiev (GM, 4th place in 2013 World Championship) from Ukraine, who brought his top skills to the table and ended the match in a draw.


Men's Rapids was a spectacle. Georgiev and Boomstra were tied for the lead, so a tie break had to separate these two draughts champions. Georgiev took the position of the attacker in the tiebreak and with his risky moves managed to defeat Boomstra in a spectacular fashion. What an end to the Draughts competition at the 2013 Beijing SportAccord World Mind Games. 


Similarly to the men's competition, the Women's Rapids was a close chase right up until the last round. The play was structured, well-thought and showed the talent of true elites. Zoja Golubeva from Latvia took the gold, Volha Fedarovich earned silver and Tamara Tansykkuzhina came through with the bronze. 


The anticipated top level competition was definitely present as the contestants battled to the very end. 



For a list of Men's Rapids results, click here

For a list of Women's Rapids results, click here

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Go: Complete victories for China, Korea, and Europe

In the second day of men's team competition, the teams from China, Korea, and Europe crushed their opponents from Chinese Taipei, Japan and North America. The score was 3-0 in every match. Europe in particular, after suffering a succession of defeats in the previous SportAccord World Mind Games, can finally point with pride to a resounding victory. SportAccord President Mr. Marius Vizer and SportAccord Director General Mr. Vlad Marinescu paid a visit to the go venue to take a look at the scene of this triple triumph.


In two rounds of women's individual competition, the Chinese players won all their games, but the two players from Chinese Taipei, the two from Korea, and two from Russia are still in contention.



For a list of Men's Teams results, click here

For a list of Women's Individual result, click here 

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Xiangqi: Battle of the best


The second day of the 2013 SportAccord World Mind Games marked the clash of the two best Xiangqi nations: China vs Vietnam.


We have seen many intense match-ups of athletes of these two dominating nations at previous World Mind Games and World Championships. Media interest for this match was extremely high, with Beijing TV and CCTV both broadcasting live.


The defending Champion of the 2012 World Mind Games, Wang Tiangyi managed to overcome the disadvantage of starting with black and defeat his Vietnamese opponent Uong Duong Bac in a hard-fought match. At the end of day two, it looks like the tournament will be decided between two Chinese players, Tiangyi and Yongzheng, who have managed to win all their matches so far.


The second clash of these two great Xiangqi nations took place in the women’s competition: The winner of the World Championship, Tang Dan (China) faced the runner-up, Nguyen Hoang Yen (Vietnam) for a second time in two days. The Chinese player managed to keep her perfect record in tact and is undefeated at the end of day two.


China seems to be unstoppable this year.


For the Men's results, click here 

For the Women's results, click here

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