The Canadian team consists of 28 players in 12 age and gender categories – Open and Girls Under-8, Under-10, Under-12, Under-14, Under-16, and Under-18.
Local Toronto players on the team include Arhant Washimkar and Harmony Zhu, who are regular club players at ACC – now representing all of Canada in the U8 Open and U8 Girls categories. Way to go, Arhant and Harmony! [Harmony is a former member of the Golden Knight Chess Club in Burnaby, BC – see comments, below.]
Alex Florea and Rebecca Giblon, who are also currently playing at ACC in the Toronto Junior and Toronto Women’s Championships, are competing for Canada in U16 Open and U16 Girls. Mark Plotkin, also playing at ACC in the Toronto Junior, is playing in the U14 Open category. [Thanks, Jack, for the intel.] Good luck, Mark, Alex, and Rebecca!
Among other notable participants, Richard Wang (U14), from Edmonton, earned his IM title at this year’s Canadian Closed (at age 13) and must be one of our best medal hopes this year. Jason Cao (U12), from Victoria, is of course famous as the U10 World Champion of 2010. And Ashley Tapp (U12 Girls), also from BC, has already become a bit of a chess celebrity through her recent fundraising campaign. Good luck to all our young Canadian players!
Team Canada at the WYCC is led once again by Andrew Giblon as Head of Delegation, with FM Andrew Peredun and IM Edward Porper as official coaches.
Most of the Canadian contingent are staying twenty minutes outside Maribor in the picturesque Hotel Tisa …
… where they are busy training:
Meanwhile, the tournament site is ready and waiting:
Round One – Thursday, November 8
Round One starts at 15:00 Central European Time, 9:00 am Toronto time. Pairings and results are posted on the WYCC site. (Filter Federation=CAN to see Team Canada’s results.) Selected games are running live on chessbomb.
Early pairings in a large Swiss are, as usual, heavy rating mismatches, so there aren’t many surprises in the first-round results. Among the winners, Mark Plotkin (1928) beats teammate Kajan Thanabalachandran (UNR) in U10 Open; Arhant Washimkar (UNR) beats Slovenian Aleksander Dajcman (UNR) in U8 Open; and Harmony Zhu (UNR) gets a first-round bye in U8 Girls.
Rounds Two to Four – Friday-Sunday, November 9-11
While there are a number of players with fine records and good games, only two now are still perfect. Richard Wang, number 4 seed in U14 Open, is 4/4 and will be defending top board in his section next round. Meanwhile Harmony Zhu, with 4/4 in U8 Girls, will be playing the top seed in her section next round. Two big games to watch in Round 5 action early Monday morning!
With a break day coming up Tuesday, there are two rounds on Monday.
In Round 5, Harmony draws the U8 Girls top-seed, Hungarian Judit Juhasz! In Round 6, she loses to the number-3 seed, Russian Taisiya Tereshechkina.
After six rounds, there are four Canadians holding places in the top-20 in their categories:
Richard Wang in U14 Open has 5.0/6, and is currently in 2nd place (initally 4th seed). Harmony Zhu in U8 Girls has 4.5/6, and is currently in 9th (initially 91st). Arhant Washimkar in U8 Open has 4.5/6, and is currently in 12th (initially 129th). Qiyu Zhou in U12 Girls has 4.0/6, and is currently in 19th (initially 15th).
Rounds Seven to Nine – Wednesday to Friday, November 14-16
After nine rounds, our three contenders are still looking good for a top-ten finish. Harmony, Qiyu, and Richard all won their Round-9 games, and all have 6.5/9 going into the last two rounds.
Here’s Harmony’s Round-9 win:
Round Ten – Saturday, November 17
Unofficial results show Qiyu losing to Kazakhstani WIM Zhansaya Abdumalik (top seed in Girls U12), while Richard and Harmony, each winning their games, are heading into the final round with 7.5/10. Harmony and Richard are also both 6th in their sections.
Harmony is also celebrating her 7th birthday today – Happy birthday, Harmony!
Good luck to everyone in the final round!
Round Eleven – Sunday, November 18 – Final Round!
It’s an early-morning round, to make time for closing ceremonies later in the afternoon.
In U8 Girls, Harmony Zhu is playing Motahare Asadi on board 1.
In U14 Open, Richard Wang is playing Radoslaw Gajek on board 2.
Harmony, with a loss, finishes 8th in the world among girls under 8. Richard, with a last-round win, takes a bronze medal for Canada for players under 14.
sober post-tournament statistical analysis by Victor Plotkin on ChessTalk
all the .pgn game files I was able to find from the official site (Thanks, Jonathan Berry)
Rounds 8 and 9 (Nov 25-26)
Montreal’s Olivier Kenta Chiku-Ratte, who had held first place in the U12 Open section through six rounds, earned his second and third straight loss, finishing 40th.
Meanwhile, Richard Wang won two in a row, finishing 10th in the U14 Open. Yuanchen Zhang got a draw and a win, finishing 9th in the U10 Open. And little Taylor Zhang got her third and fourth win in a row, finishing 5th in U8 Girls!
But Canada’s biggest winner this WYCC was Michael Song. Michael lost to Hungarian FM (and U12 silver medallist) Benjamin Glendura in Round 8, but won his game in Round 9, finishing tied for third (and with the best tie-break) at 7.0/9.
Michael Song has won again! At 5-0-2, he is still undefeated. And with 6.0/7, he is now in a three-way tie for first in the U12 Open section, 3rd on tie-break. Kenta, who had been leading the section through six rounds, finally lost his seventh-round game. Kenta is now ranked 11th.
Luke, with a loss, is still 9th in the U8 Open. Yuanchen, with a loss, is 12th in the U10 Open. And Loren Laceste, with a win, has 5.0/7 and is now tied for 8th (12th on tie-break) in the U18 Open!
Two rounds to go, Friday and Saturday… Go, Team Canada!
Round 6 (Nov 23)
Our U12 boys, Olivier Kenta Chiku-Ratte and Michael Song, are world beaters! Kenta got a draw and Michael won, so they’re both at 5.0/6. Kenta is still ranked 1st in the section, with the best tie-break, and Michael is tied for 6th.
Meanwhile, in U10 Open, Yuanchen Zhang is in a massive tie for 2nd with 5.0/6 (=7th on tie-break).
And in U8 Open, Luke Pulfer has moved up to =3rd with another win and 5.0/6.
Round 5 (Nov 22)
Through five rounds, Montreal’s Olivier Kenta Chiku-Ratte is still leading the Canadian team, and his U-12 Open section, with 4.5/5, having given up just one draw, in round 5. His U-12 teammate Michael Song from North York is in 8th place in the same section with 4.0/5. Michael is also undefeated, with a record of 3-0-2, .
Three other Canadian players have 4.0/5: Luke Pulfer from Surrey BC in the U8 Open (9th), Yuanchen Zhang from Markham ON in the U10 Open (11th), and Richard Wang from Edmonton AB in U-14 Open (9th).
Rest Day (Nov 21)
The WYCC scheduled a rest day on Monday. Here are some pictures from Toronto’s Liza Orlova (U18 Girls) – with US players, Emily Tallo and Mikhail Vilenchuk. Liza reports that “Canada and America are best friends this WYCC.”
Rounds 3 and 4 (Nov 20)
Sunday saw double-round action. Several of our young superstars have impressive records in the first four rounds:
Kenta is still perfect at 4.0/4, and leads the U12 Open – clear first! His U-12 teammates, Michael Song and Razvan Preotu, are close behind at 3.5/4 and 3.0/4. Qiyu has 3.5/4 in U12 Girls (her third-round win is posted below). Myriam Roy has 3.0/4 in U16 Girls.
Sergey Noritsyn and Luke Pulfer, have 3.5/4 and 3.0/4 in the U8 Open. Richard Wang has 3.5/4 in the U14 Open. And Loren Laceste has 3.0/4 in the U18 Open (his third-round win is posted below).
Here are Qiyu’s and Loren’s Round-3 games:
Round 2 (Nov 19)
All three Canadian boys in the U12 Open won their second-round games: Olivier Kenta Chiku-Ratte, Michael Song, and Razvan Preotu are heading into round 3 with perfect 2.0/2 records!
In U12 Girls, Qiyu Zhou defeated her section’s top seed, Ivana Maria Furtado (IND)! Check out her game, below (annotated by John Upper, and posted on ChessTalk.) Qiyu has a perfect 2.0/2 record.
Round 1 (Nov 18)
In U8 Open, Sergey Noritsyn and Luke Pulfer won their first-round games. Here is Luke’s game against Arman Baradaran (USA) – with a sense of humour at the end.