Saturday 30 August 2014

Three new IM's (all from Canberra!)

It is a rare day for Australian chess when 3 players become International Masters at the same time. Despite what was a shambolic FIDE General Assembly, the subsequent Presidential Board meeting at least ratified the titles earned in the previous 3 months, and the list of title holders included 3 young Australian players.
Junta Ikeda earned his title with his final norm at the 2014 O2C Doeberl Cup,with an extra one at the 2014 SIO for luck. Anton Smirnov was a little more suprising, getting his third norm at the 2014 Politiken Cup just before the Olympiad, although FIDE seems to have used his IM performance at the 2014 Olympiad in its place, and accepted his rating will top 2400 on the September 2014 Rating List. The third title has been awarded to Rishi Sardana, who like Smirnov and Ikeda was born in Canberra, but mainly plays his chess away from Australia, and currently lives in India.
With both Smirnov and Ikeda playing on the Olympiad team, and Sardana not far off, it is looking like the next decade of Australian chess will see they, and a number of up and coming players, be the new force on the local and international scene.

Baramidze,David (2612) - Smirnov,Anton (2334) [D85]
41st Olympiad Open 2014 Tromso NOR (11.4), 14.08.2014

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