18/04/2024

Uzbekistan came first in the Open Event. (Photo: Europe Chess)

The 44th Chess Olympiad concluded on Wednesday, with Ukraine winning the Women’s tournament and Uzbekistan coming first in the Open event. Both nations played hard and were surprise winners of the tournament.

Held in Chennai, India, and despite having three teams in both events, the home country was unable to finish in first place. In the Open Event, Uzbekistan took home the gold medal, followed by Armenia in second place and India 2 in third.

In the Women’s Chess Olympiad, Ukraine clinched the top spot after a dramatic finish to the tournament. Narrowly missing out on first place, Georgia came second, with the home country rounding up the top three.

Boasting a young inexperienced team, Uzbekistan shocked the competition to claim first place. It secured the title, defeating Netherlands in its last match of the tournament. It nearly wasn’t to be though, only narrowly beating the Netherlands 2.5-1.5.

Even though they had an equal score of 19 points with Armenia at the end of the tournament, it won out on the tiebreak criteria.

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The team was led by Nodirbek Abdusattorov, a 17-year-old prodigy who has made waves in the chess world recently. Dethroning Magnus Carlsen as the World Rapid Chess Champion late last year, he has continued to perform at a considerable level.

Abdusattorov has always been considered a prodigy, becoming a Grandmaster at 13 years of age, which made him one of the youngest players to achieve this feat.

Their roster also included two 20-year-old players, Nordirbek Yakubboev, and Shamsiddin Vokhidov. 16-year-old Javokhir Sindarov and veteran 27-year-old Jahongir Vakhidov rounded up the team.

Uzbekistan’s Road to the Chess Olympiad Gold Medal

1st Round: Defeated Nepal 4-0 (Wins by A. Nodirbek, Y. Nodirbek, Javokhir, Shamsiddin)

2nd Round: Defeated Faroe Islands 4-0 (Wins by A. Nodirbek, Y. Nodirbek, Javokhir, Jakhongir)

3rd Round: Defeated Slovenia 3-1 (Wins by A. Nodirbek and Javokhir, Draws by Y. Nodirbek and Shamsiddin)

4th Round: Drew with USA 2-2 (Win by A. Nodirbek, Draws by Y. Nodirbek and Jakhongir)

5th Round: Defeated Slovakia 4-0 (Wins by A. Nodirbek, Y. Nodirbek, Javokhir, Jakhongir)

6th Round: Drew with India 2-2 (Wins by A. Nodirbek, Y. Nodirbek, Javokhir, Shamsiddin)

7th Round: Defeated Peru 4-0 (Wins by A. Nodirbek, Y. Nodirbek, Javokhir, Shamsiddin)

8th Round: Defeated Germany 2.5-1.5 (Wins by Y. Nodirbek, Draws by A. Nodirbek, Javokhir, Jakhongir)

9th Round: Defeated Armenia 3-1 (Wins by Javokhir and Jakhongir, Draws by A. Nodirbek and Y. Nodirbek)

10th Round: Drew with India (2) 2-2 (Wins by A. Nodirbek, Draws by Y. Nodirbek and Jakhongir)

11th Round: Defeated Netherlands 2.5-1.5 (Wins by Jakhongir, Draws by A. Nodirbek, Y. Nodirbek, Javokhir)

Jahongir Vakhidov of Uzbekistan who defeated Max Warmerdam of the Netherlands in a crucial game to bring gold medal for his country. (Photo: Lennart Ootes/FIDE)

After an emotional last round, Ukraine fought back to finish first on the podium. Competing against Poland in the last round, it was able to clinch a 3-1 win.

The team was led by Anna Ushenina, and sisters Mariya and Anna Muzychukm. Natalkya Buksa and Yuliya Osmak rounded up the rest of their team.

Ukraine’s Road to the Women’s Gold Medal

1st Round: Defeated South Africa 4-0 (Wins by M. Anna, U. Anna, Nataliya, Yuliia)

2nd Round: Defeated Turkey 3-0 (Wins by Mariya, U. Anna, Nataliya, Yuliia)

3rd Round: Defeated Slovakia 4-0 (Wins by Mariya, M. Anna, Nataliya, Yuliia)

4th Round: Defeated Bulgaria 2.5-1.5 (Wins by M. Anna and U. Anna, Draws by Mariya)

5th Round: Drew with Azerbaijan 2-2 (Wins by Mariya, Draws by M. Anna and U. Anna)

6th Round: Drew with Romania 2-2 (Wins by M. Anna, Draws by Mariya and Nataliya)

7th Round: Defeated Netherlands 3.5-0.5 (Wins by M. Anna, U. Anna, Nataliya, Draw by Mariya)

8th Round: Drew with India 2-2 (Draws by Mariya, M. Anna, U. Anna, Nataliya)

9th Round: Drew with Georgia 2-2 (Wins by Nataliya, Draws by Mariya and U. Anna)

10th Round: Defeated Germany 2.5-1.5 (Wins by U. Anna, Draws by Mariya, M. Anna, Nataliya

11th Round: Defeated Poland 3-1 (Wins by Mariya and U. Anna, Draws by M. Anna and Nataliya)

Ukraine had a sensational last day to win the gold medal. (Photo: Europe Chess)

Next year’s 45th Chess Olympiad will be held in Budapest, Hungary.

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