Chess in 2007
by Bill Wall

In 2007, there was only one woman ranked in the top 100 chess players in the world. Judit Polgar, the only woman in that list, was ranked 13th in the world at that time.

In 2007, SSgt Rudy Tia, Jr won the Army chess championship for the 7th time.

In 2007, Jaan Ehlvest won the Marshall Chess Club championship.

In 2007, a Dutch player was caught using PocketFritz on his PDA. The tournament director caught him when the player went outside to get some fresh air.

In 2007, $73,000 was donated on behalf of a chess program and team at an elementary school in Washington, D.C. It turned out that the school business manager who handled the funds was a thief. The business manager ripped off most of the $73,000 that was supposed to go to the chess program. The person used the school's ATM card more than 100 times to steal from the chess fund. When the pillage was discovered, the school security and the police were immediately notified, but the authorities did little or nothing until an anonymous tipster told the D.C. government's inspector general about the missing money. Before the plundering, the money was used to fund 12 Washington D.C. kids to Nashville to take part in the national scholastic chess tournament. The children of the chess team never competed in another tournament after the theft of their funds.

In 2007, Navy retired Electronics Technician 1st Class Larry Larkins (2107) won the 48st annual U.S. Armed Forces Open Championship, held in Arlington, Virginia.

In 2007, a team of home-schooled students who won the 2006 Arizona Scholastic Championship was banned from the 2007 championship. Rules were changed to not allow home-schooled students from participating. Only public and private schools were allowed to participate in the event.

In 2007, Douglas Taffinger (2055), Samuel Echaure (2032), Nathanial Ola (2027), and Jhonel Baniel (1991) tied for 1st in the Interservice championship, held in San Diego.

In 2007, GM Farhad Tahirov played in the 2006-2007 Hastings Chess Congress. After the last round, having a couple of hours to kill before the prize-giving, he decided to take a walk along the Hastings seafront. Unfortunately, he passed by a particularly dodgy pub, frequented by various skinheads and other charmers, several of whom attacked and robbed him. He lost almost 1,000 british pounds in cash, plus a mobile phone and camera, as well as ending up in hospital for treatment to his injuries.

In 2007, two players got into an argument at the Village Chess Shop in New York during a chess game. One player was using his piece to knock off the other player's piece rather than using the hands to remove a captured piece. One player than picked up the wooden board and hit the other player in the mouth, which drew blood. The police were called. The player that was hit was pressing criminal charges and vowed to sue.

In 2007, Florencio Campomanes was involved in a car accident in Turkey that left him in intensive care. He was on his way to the airport for a return flight to the Philippines after the FIDE Presidential Board meeting in Antalya, Turkey when the driver lost control of the vehicle. The car overturned and plunged over the side of the road. Campomanes was sitting in the back seat and not wearing a safety belt. He was thrown from the car, which was badly damaged. Campomanes was operated on for 7.5 hours to repair broken bones in his legs, hands, neck and face.

In 2007, during a Dutch League match, the team captain of one of the teams was caught using a PDA. The player had walked outside the playing room, with permission, to get some fresh air. An arbiter followed him and caught him using Pocket Fritz. The player was banned from playing in the Dutch league for two years.

In 2007, Krzysztof Ejsmont of Poland was expelled from the Tadeusz Gniot Memorial tournament after 7 rounds for "unsportive play." He was accused of using a chess program to make his moves.

On January 17, 2007, Rodrigo Flores Alvarez died. He was 11-time Chilean champion.

In February 2007, a burglary of the hotel room of Grandmaster Radjabov forced him to withdraw from the Morelia-Linares tournament. The burglary occurred in Patzcuaro, Mexico only a few days before the start of the tournament. Radjabov and his father left for a quick dinner and returned to their room within 30 minutes. All of their valuable items were stolen. They reported the crime, but got neither help from the local authorities, or even a police investigation.

In May 2007, was formed.

On May 23, 2007, Alexander Shabalov won the 51st US championship in Stillwater, OK.

On May 15, 2007, an episode (Season 3, Episode 23) called "The Jerk" appeared on House. A chess player named Nate beats up another chess player using a chess clock.

On June 18, 2007, Rybka won the 15th World Computer Chess Championship in Amsterdam (9 wins, 2 draws), followed by Zappa.

In June, 2007, the "Ultimate Computer Challenge" was held in Elista. Deep Junior defeated Deep Fritz with the score of 4-2 (2 wins, 4 draws).

On June 30, 2007, GM (1992) Maxim Sorokin (1968-2007) died of complications from a car accident that occurred while driving home from the Candidates matches in Elista,Kalmykia at the age of 39. He died in the Elista hospital several days after an auto crash on the road from Elista to Volgograd.

On July 4, 2007, Varuzhan Akobian won the World Open in tiebreak over Alex Stripunsky; held in King of Prussia, PA. The Rochester Chess Center was the official vendor at the World Open in Philadelphia. They had 21 expensive chess clocks stolen during the event. Some of the clocks were being used to pay off gambling debts from backgammon and poker.

On July 20, 2007, Irina Krush won the US Women's chess championship.

In August, 2007, Grandmaster Joel Benjamin played a match with Rybka in which Rybka played without one of its pawns (pawn odds). Rybka won the match 4.5 - 3.5 (2 wins, 1 loss, 5 draws for Rybka).

On August 4, 2007, Magnus Carlsen won the 40th International Chess Festival in Biel.

In September 2007, the 18th NATO championship was held in Ankara, Turkey. Germany took 1st place for the 11th time in a row. Poland and The Netherlands tied for 2nd-3rd. The USA took 8th place. Top scorer was Vytautas Vaznonis of Lithuania.

On September 11, 2007, Anand won the World Chess Championship, held in Mexico.

On September 28, 2007, Algimantas Butorius won the 17th Chess Senior World Championship in Mexico City.

On October 15, 2007, Anand is the highest rated person in FIDE (2801), followed by Ivanchuk (2787), and Kramnik (2785).

On November 25, 2007, Alex Yermolinsky won the 43rd American Open in Los Angeles.

In December 2007, the tournament director's laptop was stolen at the 34th Eastern Open in Washington, D.C. It had occurred shortly after round 3, when the 6-month-old laptop was stolen from the director's room. Generous chess players at the event contributed $600, which was matched by a generous donor to pay for a new laptop.

In December, 2007, Anna Rudolf, a Hungarian Woman Grandmaster and International Master, was accused of cheating by some of the male players in the Vandoeuvre Open chess tournament in France. She was allegedly receiving transmissions of chess moves through her container of lip gloss. One of the male players even refused to shake hands with her in the final game and demanded that the arbiter take further actions against her. At the time, Rudolf was leading the tournament by half a point. She was so shocked by the accusations that she lost the final round and ended up in 9th place.

On December 1, 2007, an episode called "Capture the Queen" appeared on CBS 48 Hours.

In December, 2007, Hiarcs won over tie breaks against Rybka, with a score of 5.5 out of 7 at the 17th International Paderborn Computer Chess Championship.

On Dec 16, 2007, GM (1978) Ivan Nemet (1943-2007) died of a heart attack in Basel, Switzerland at the age of 64.

On December 18, 2007, Gata Kamsky won the Chess World Cup in Khany-Mansiysk.

On December 30, 2007, Alexander Morozevich won the Russian Championship.

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