Sunday 22 November 2020

2020 Vikings Weekender - GM Hrant Melkumyan wins

 GM Hrant Melkumyan has won the 2020 Vikings Weekender with 5.5/6. Conceding only half a point to fellow GM Anton Smirnov, he wrapped up first place with a win over Fred Litchfield in the final round. Smirnov, who was tied with Melkumyan going into the final round, could only draw with IM Junta Ikeda, after Ikeda found a nice sacrificial idea in the Leningrad Dutch. The draw allowed Ikeda to finish in a tie for third place with Bazli Karattiyattil, who capped of a strong tournament with a last round win over Dillon Hathiramani.

The Under 1600 event was won by Harry Johnson on 5.5, half a point ahead of Paul Dunn. Johnson was making a return to chess after a break of a number of years, and his comeback tournament was a successful one. James Buckley performed well above his rating to finish in 3rd place, while Minchen Yang picked up the best junior prize after scoring 3.5/6.

The tournament was judged a success by the organisers with the strong field resulting in a number of interesting and competitive games. Almost as importantly, it served as a small test event for next years Doeberl Cup, and based on the behaviour of the players (and the feedback from the venue), it passed with flying colours!

Full results of the tournament can be found at along with a link to replays of games from the top 2 boards.

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