Chess Olympiad, Round 9: Armenia drops crucial points in Russia encounter

Chess Olympiad, Round 9: Armenia drops crucial points in Russia encounter

Gabriel Sargsyan surrenders to Peter Svidler

Armenia have suffered their second defeat at the current World Chess Olympiad, letting the host nation Russia move closer to an overall success in the biannual tournament in Khanty-Mansiysk.

In Round 9 played on Thursday, Armenia’s Levon Aronyan, Vladimir Hakobyan and Arman Pashikyan held for draws against Vladimir Kramnik, Alexander Grischuk and Sergey Karyakin, respectively.

The loss of Gabriel Sargsyan, playing with whites, on Board #3 to his Russian counterpart Peter Svidler cost his team two points as the match ended 2.5-1.5 to Russia.

The result leaves Armenia with 13 points, in the 10th position, trailing the leaders Ukraine (16 pts), Russia (15 pts), France (15 pts) and six other teams with 14 or 13 points, with only two more rounds to go.

The latest setback also makes it highly unlikely for Armenia to repeat their success of 2006 and 2008 when the team became Olympiad winners.

In the penultimate round played on Friday Armenia beat the Czech Republic 2.5-1.5 and was in the 6th place before the final round where its opponent was France. Ukraine and Russia were leaders with 18 and 17 points, respectively.

In the women's section, in Round 9 Armenia beat Slovakia 2.5-1.5 and are now in ninth place with 13 points, 5 points behind the leaders Russia. Next Armenia plays Poland on Friday.

The 39th World Chess Olympiad’s official website provides all latest results and standings as well as makes available daily online watching of games beginning 2 pm.