2010 in Review

By Bill Wall


2010 opened with the 2009-2010 Hastings tournament, which ended January 5, 2010.  There was a 4-way tie with Istratescu, Edouard, Howell, and Hebden.

On Jan 6, Kamsky won the 52nd Reggio Emilia.

On Jan 14, Russia won the World Team Championship, followed by USA and India.

On Jan 31, Magnus Carlsen won at Corus Wijk aan Zee, a Category 19 tournament with average rating of 2710.

On Feb 4, Michael Adams won the 8th Gibtelecom Masters in Gibralter.

On Feb 19, Le Quang Liem won the 9th Aeroflot Open in Mosocw.

On Feb 25, Topalov won at Linares, a Category 21 event, with average rating of 2758.

On March 6, Oxford and Cambridge tied in their 128th annual match.  Cambridge leads 70 to 62.

On March 21, Istvan Bilek, Hungarian grandmaster died. 

On March 23, my good friend Robert Karch died one day before his 80th birthday.  I knew him since 1971, when he was an Army Intelligence officer stationed in Okinawa and I was a KC-135 and B-52 crew chief.  We played a lot of chess games at the Naha USO.  I later became an Air Force intelligence officer and played in and several of Karch’s tournaments, as well as assisting him in the 1990 Hjartarson-Karpov match in Seattle and contributing to his chess magazines, making the cover in one issues of his International Chess magazine.

On March 27, former world champion Vasily Smyslov died in Moscow, 3 days after turning 89.

On May 3, former Florencio Campomanes died at the age of 83.  We met several  times, and he used to tell me who the KGB agents were that followed Russian chess players.  He told me that he thought Edward Gufeld was a KGB  agent while Gufeld and I were having dinner once.  We laughed it off, but I wasn’t sure if it was true or not.

On May 8, Andor Lilienthal died in Budapest, 3 days after turning 99.  Also on May 8, Feodor Skripchenko died.  He was the president of the Moldova Chess Federation and the father of Woman Grandmaster Almia Skripchenko.

On May 9, Bill Hook, author of Hooked on Chess, died.

On May 11, Anand won the world chess championship in Sofia, Bulgaria, defeating Topalov.

On May 25, Kamsky won the U.S. championship.

On June 13, Timur Gareev won the National Open.

On July 5, Viktor Laznicka won the 38th World Open.

On July 19, Sam Shankland won the US Junior Championship.  He just earned his final GM norm, so he is our newest Grandmaster.

On July 20, Irina Krush won the US Women’s Chess Championship.

On August 8, Alejandro Ramirez won the 111th US Open in Irvine, California.

On Sep 9, Grandmaster Bent Larsen died at the age of 75.

On Oct 3, the Ukraine won the 39th chess Olympiad, followed by Russia I and Israel.  Russia won the Women’s Olympiad, followed by China and the Ukraine.

In October, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov won re-election to FIDE.  He was challenged by Anatoly Karpov.

On Oct 30, Carlsen won the 2010 Nanjing Pearl Springs Masters.

On Nov 15, Grandmaster Larry Evans died.  He was 78.

On Nov 18, Aronian won the world blitz championship.

On Nov 28, Josh Friedel won the 46th American Open in Los Angeles.

In November, the New England Nor’Easters won the 2010 U.S. Chess League.

In November, Rybka won the 30th Open Dutch Computer Championship.

On Dec 15, Magnus Carlsen won the 2nd London Classic.  He won it last year.

On  Dec 24, Hou Yifan, at 16, became the youngest world chess champion, male or female, when she won the world’s women championship.

Vugar Gashimov won at Reggio Emilia, which started in December.

Ian Nepomniachtchi won the 63rd Russian championship, which started in December.

Eduard, Howell, Syam, and Prasanna won at Hastings, which started in December.

At the end of 2010, Magnus Carlsen was ranked #1 in the world, with a 2814 rating.  Following him were Anand at 2810, Aronian at 2805, Kramnik at 2784, Karjakin at 2776, and Topalov at 2775.