Round 7: Not exactly chess

The Reykjavik Open is more than just a tournament; it should be called a chess festival. In the last few days there have been quite a lot of side events, such as a pub quiz, a blitz tournament and a soccer football match! It’s not easy to be modest and at the same time write about something you…


Video clip: Sopiko Guramishvili

It’s Women’s Day in Iceland and so we decided to interview Sopiko Guramishvili, the girlfriend of top seed Anish Giri and quite a strong player herself! She studies international languages and focuses on English, which you can tell from this interview.

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Some side-event news

There is almost no time to do nothing here in Reykjavik…..because of all the fun! When we are not playing the tournament or watching/following/commenting we are doing some fun side events. On Friday we had the 5th edition of the Pub Quiz. This year the questions were very hard and the winners were chess journalists…


Round 6: What to do with those rooks?

“There was a man of the North, Ingólfr, who is truly said to be the first leave it for Iceland, in the time when Haraldr the Fair-Haired was sixteen winters of age (…), he settled south in Reykjavík.” This is taken from Íslendingabók, the Book of Icelanders, written in the 12th century by an Icelandic priest.…


Video clip: Simon Williams

Here’s an interview with English grandmaster Simon Williams, who won a spectacular game today in a Botvinnik Semi-Slav against the young Danish IM Simon Bekker-Jensen. This is how it finished:

Bekker Jensen,S (2405) – Williams,Si (2498)


25…Nf4+ 26.Kg1 Nde2+ and resigned because of 27.Bxe2 Qg3+! and mate.

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Video clip: Wesley So

An interview with Philippine GM Wesley So, right after his interesting draw with Maxime Vachier-Lagrave. So also talks about Webster University, where he’s a freshman.

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Cinderella overslept!

So far, one of the surprises of the tournament has been the American Adarsh Jayakumar. Despite allowing a draw against a 1600 in the first round and then getting a 1610 rated player in the 2nd round, he was remarkably on course for an IM norm after 5 rounds! He followed his sub-par performance in…


Rounds 4-5: Chess tourists

As Oscar Wilde once quipped, the Icelanders are very smart people. “They discovered America and kept quiet about it!” This quote was one of many little stories that were told by our tour guide on Friday, when over fifty chess players went on the famous Golden Circle tour, which visits Iceland’s main touristic attractions. In…