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Monday, January 26, 2009

2009 Gibraltar Chess Festival

The seventh annual Gibraltar Chess Festival takes place from January 27,2009 until February 5th, 2009 in the British territory of Gibraltar. Gibraltar is located on southernmost tip of the Iberian Penninsula, overlooking the Strait of Gibraltar. The territory shares a border with Spain to the north.


This year's chess festival has four sections:Masters 2350 and over, Masters Under 2350, Challengers and an Amateur section. Some of the strongest players in chess are participating in the Masters 2350 and over section including: GM's Gashimov (rated #19 on the latest FIDE ratings list), Svidler(#20 on the list), Nakamura, (32nd on the list), Vachier-Lagrave (33rd on the list), Harikrishna (51st on the list),Milov (57th on the list), and Ivan Sokolov (66th on the list). The large prize fund has also attracted some of the top women chess players in the world including:Stefanova, Cramling,Dzagnidze.Arakhamia-Grant, Cmilyte, former Woman's World chess champion Zhu Chen,Zatonskih, Krush, Sachdev, Houska and Klinova.

The entire list of participants who have a rating above elo 2350 can be viewed at
http://www.gibraltarchesscongress.com/gib2009/publicity_eng/competitors.html with the official tournament website at http://www.gibraltarchesscongress.com/gib2009/index.html The format of the Masters 2350 section is one in which "fighting chess" has been emphasized. A special rule for this Festival is that "draws by mutual agreement in under 30 moves are not allowed. There must be no pre-arranged or tacit agreements to draw games of any length, by repetition or otherwise. Genuine draws by repetition or stalemate are acceptable. Penalties may involve loss of prize money." GM Stuart Conquest is going to be providing live commentary of the top section. This commentary can be listened to by going to http://www.gibraltarchesscongress.com/gib2009/live/commentary.html . A very wonderful aspect of the live commentary is that listeners will even be able to ask GM Conquest live questions using the program MSN Messenger! 50 other games from the tournament will be covered live at 50 other games will be covered via www.monroi.com. In addition a live webcamera has been placed in the tournament hall.

The organizers of this event have to be applauded, for being able to obtain such a large prize fund for players. Top prize in the Masters 2350 section is 15,000 pounds, with the top woman player winning 6,000 pounds. The website which has been created contains alot of interesting information about the players who are participating in the event. It was wonderful to learn, in reading the bios of the players that Ketevan Arakhamia Grant has gained her third and final male GM norm, and because her elo is above 2500, the FIDE will award her the Male GM title!! Congratulations Ketie!!

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Visit GM Alexandra Kosteniuk's Women's Chess Blog:Please click on the image below:

Visit GM Alexandra Kosteniuk's Women's Chess Blog:Please click on the image below:
Chess needs more women and girl participants and administrators!

Thoughts worth thinking about

"Our subconscious minds have no sense of humor, play no jokes and cannot tell the difference between reality and an imagined thought or image. What we continually think about eventually will manifest in our lives."-Sidney Madwed



Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every woman and man present their views without penalty, there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.- Albert Einstein Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. - Leo Buscaglia



A person's true wealth is the good he or she does in the world. - Mohammed



Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty. -Albert Einstein



The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others. - Ghandi



The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves. - Helen Keller



Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism. Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be human can, paradoxically, make yourself a happier and more productive person. - Dr. David M. Burns



Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures. -His Holiness The Dalai Lama



Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals. And in this respect mankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it. -



Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being



The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. -George Bernard Shaw

Ego's trick is to make us lose sight of our interdependence. That kind of ego-thought gives us a perfect justification to look out only for ourselves. But that is far from the truth. In reality we all depend on each other and we have to help each other. The husband has to help his wife, the wife has to help the husband, the mother has to help her children, and the children are supposed to help the parents too, whether they want to or not.-Gehlek Rinpoche Source: "The Best Buddhist Writing 2005 pg. 165

The hostile attitude of conquering nature ignores the basic interdependence of all things and events---that the world beyond the skin is actually an extension of our own bodies---and will end in destroying the very environment from which we emerge and upon which our whole life depends.