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News and Events

GM Joel recaps the Reykjavik Open and the Saint Louis Spring Internationals

Added on 03.19.2018

As the Candidates tournament rolls along, the action doesn’t stop in major tournaments around the World.  This week I have news and action from two completed events, The Reykjavik Open and the Saint Louis Spring Internationals. Baskaran Adhiban got off to a slow start with draws against lower-rated players in rounds one and three, but then reeled off five wins in a row en route to 7.5/9 and clear first place.  The key victory came—as it so often does—in the penultimate round, against the top...Full Story

GM Joel wraps up the Aeroflot and recaps Tal Memorial

Added on 03.12.2018

This week I’ll have a report on the Tal Memorial Rapid and Blitz tournament, but first let me wrap the Aeroflot Open.   Vladislav Kovalev - Photo by Niklesh Jain 24-year-old Belarussian GM Vladislav Kovalev emerged as the clear winner with 7/9, followed by the Indian Sethuraman and the young Russian Gordievsky at 6.5.  It was a tournament where a lot of the top seeds took it on the chin, as you might expect in Russia.  The win that catapulted Kovalev to first place came in the penultimate...Full Story

GM Joel’s tribute to Anatoly Lein

Added on 03.05.2018

While there are some interesting events going on in world chess, I’m going to put them aside to focus on remembering a very important figure in American chess history.  Anatoly Lein passed away last week at the age of 86. He became a grandmaster in 1968, and defeated many of the giants of Russian chess, including World Champions, Tal and Smyslov, as well as Bronstein, Polugaevsky, Stein, and Taimanov.  Emigrating to the U.S. in 1975, he was able to put up strong results against younger...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap February 26 2018

Added on 02.26.2018

This week I’ll feature games from the cutthroat competition in the Aeroflot Open in Moscow, as well as a look at a more convivial competition on the Emerald Isle. Open tournaments will always produce an upstart somewhere along the way.  Eesha Karavade is not an up and comer at age thirty, but the start for the Indian WGM/IM was quite remarkable.  With two wins and two draws against 2600 level players, she found herself among the early leaders.  Here’s how she scored the point in the fourth...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap February 19 2018

Added on 02.19.2018

It’s another fairly slow week in world chess, so I feel I’ll have to report on something that is sort of chess, and sort of not chess.  Plus I will also wrap up the St. Louis Norm Congress and show an interesting game form the Cuban Championship.   GM Magnus Carlsen and GM Hikaru Nakamura Magnus Carlsen and Hikaru Nakamura met in Norway for the unofficial World Championship of Chess960, also known as Fischer Random, after the ex-World Champion, who was a great advocate of this chess...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap February 12 2018

Added on 02.12.2018

We have a bit of a lull after the big time events in Wijk aan Zee and Gibraltar, but I’ll have action from the Moscow Open and St Louis Norm Congress.  First up:  a match between two legendary former World Champions. Anatoly Karpov retired from classical tournaments years ago, but he can still be coaxed into playing in rapid events.  He took on Hou Yifan is a six-game match in China.  At 66, Karpov is nearly three times older than his 23-year-old opponent.  Hou Yifan also outrates 2018...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap February 05 2018

Added on 02.05.2018

This week we have the conclusion of the Tradewinds Gibraltar Masters.  The last five rounds produced a number of interesting games and a tense fight for first that needed extra time to resolve. GM Levon Aronian, winner of the Gibraltar Chess Festival In the end, Hikaru Nakamura did not manage to reel in his fourth consecutive Gibraltar title, when Levon Aronian took first place in the playoff.  A whopping seven players landed in a tie for first.  But let’s back up a bit and see some games...Full Story

Live Events on ICCTV February 2018 Calendar

Added on 02.01.2018

        "Here is the February 2018 schedule for ICC TV! Join us this month and become a star on ICC and YouTube!"    - GM Joel Benjamin   02/04 Sunday 6PM GM David Smerdon Banter Blitz 02/08 Thursday 3PM GM Alex Yermolinskyn Every Russian Schoolboy Knows! 02/10 Saturday 2PM IM Christof Sielecki SimulMaster! 02/19 Monday 4PM GM Ronen Har-Zvi Time...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap January 29 2018

Added on 01.29.2018

The great Tata Steel tournament has come to a close, but in its place steps up a big-time open tournament, the Gibraltar Masters.  I’ll have the best action from the first six rounds. If you missed Hikaru Nakamura in Wijk aan Zee, don’t worry for him, he’s in a better place.  Hikaru has the magic touch in Gibraltar, having won four titles, including the last three in a row.  Counting the first seven rounds - where he leads with 6.0 - he has an undefeated streak of 53 games on the Rock,...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap January 22 2018

Added on 01.22.2018

We’ve got the action from Tata Steel covered in our live recap videos, so I’m going to focus on a couple of other stories that may not be getting so much attention in the chess media.  Two tournaments, two continents, two grandmaster titles. First, I’m very pleased to report that a student of mine, John Michael Burke of New Jersey, has earned his third grandmaster norm in the Charlotte Chess Club Winter International.  Coupled with a FIDE rating already comfortably over 2500, Burke’s title...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap January 15 2018

Added on 01.15.2018

The traditional Tata Steel tournament in Wijk aan Zee started up last weekend, and I’ll have the highlights from the early action there.  Plus a miniature from one of the most interesting players in the world.   GM Anish Giri (NED) Anish Giri is a big story so far. The home country hero is considered to be a high volume draw-er, but he opened this tournament with two wins, over Hou Yifan and Vladimir Kramnik.  Let’s take a look at the key moments from both of those games. your web...Full Story

Tata Steel 2018

Added on 01.12.2018

A new year is here and, as the tradition goes, the best players in the world gather in Wijk Aan Zee, the small town in the North Holland province of Netherlands, to play the 80th edition of the prestigious tournament.  From January 13-28, fourteen chessmen... wait, actually it's 13 chessmen and one chess lady! Hou Yifan, the strongest woman player, is back playing in the Tata Steel Tournament, after her latest participation in 2016. GM Hou Yifan (CHN) Several reasons make this year's Tata...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap January 08 2018

Added on 01.08.2018

This week I have action from two of the most traditional holiday tournaments in Stockholm and Hastings, but first a mini-match in China between rising star Wei Yi and strong Czech grandmaster David Navara. Navara took the first match game with an interesting queen sacrifice that was sound and solid but snowballed as the game went on.  your web browser and/or your host do not support iframes as required to display the chessboard Wei Yi struck back with a win in game three, and after a draw,...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap January 02 2018

Added on 01.02.2018

We’ll start the year off with a bang, as I have some great action from the World Rapid Championship plus a little extra bonus from the World Blitz, also held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. I can say with authority that sometimes it feels like there is no counterplay for old men.  But don’t tell that to Vishy Anand, who at age 48 is the World Rapid Champion.  He tallied 10.5/15 and won a playoff match over Vladimir Fedoseev for the title.   Let’s start by showing an awesome cheap shot Vishy used...Full Story

Live Events on ICCTV January 2018 Calendar

Added on 01.01.2018

        "Here is the January 2018 schedule for ICC TV! Join us this month and become a star on ICC and YouTube!"    - GM David Smerdon   01/06 Saturday 2PM IM Christof Sielecki SimulMaster! 01/12 Friday 4PM GM Ronen Har-Zvi Time Odds! 01/14 Sunday 6PM GM David Smerdon Banter Blitz 01/18 Thursday 1PM GM Alex Yermolinsky Tata Steel 2018 -...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap December 26 2017

Added on 12.26.2017

HO, HO HO, Merry Christmas!  The traditional tournaments of the holiday season generally run through Christmas to New Year’s, so there was a bit of the calm before the storm last week. So I will have lots of games from the Nutcracker Match of Generations…but first, a few thoughts on the World Blitz and Rapid Championships, just underway in Saudi Arabia. Magnus Carlsen and Bu Xiangzhi. Photo from the official website The prize fund has been bumped up to 2 million dollars, but the choice...Full Story

GM Joel’s recap December 18 2017

Added on 12.18.2017

This week we have history made in the Russian Superfinal, and the computer chess world, as well as a visit to the Elite Mind Games in China. Peter Svidler took his record eighth title in the Russian Championship. GM Peter Svidler This one really seemed to come out of nowhere—just a few days before the end he seemed to be having a very ordinary tournament.  Svidler started with half out of 2, then defeated two tailenders over the next several rounds.  An “accidental” victory over Vladimir...Full Story

GM Joel recaps the second part of London Chess Classic

Added on 12.12.2017

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LCC17 Recap Rounds 6-8

Added on 12.11.2017

Photo by Lennart Ootes When the World Champion loses a game,  it's immediate history. "Magnus Carlsen collapsed in London!"; "The fog of the city took Magnus away!"; and you can unleash your fantasy here, to create shocking headlines about the round eight Norwegiandisaster.  It's rather funny to see all the questions that ONE game provokes: "Is Magnus as dominant as Kasparov was?";  "Did Magnus prepare for this game?"; "Maybe he should stop going out with girls and think about his chess?". The...Full Story

LCC17 Recap Rd 1-5

Added on 12.08.2017

The first three rounds of the 9th London Chess Classic were, at first sight, a bit disappointing. 15 draws out of 15 games. But it's only apparent, as there was no lack of fighting spirit among the players. But of course we all expect the elite players to try harder, and try to win a game. The Grand Chess Tour has been the subject of some polemics or, at least, some doubts about its format. The top guys play the same opponents tournament after tournament, with the worry about their precious...Full Story

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