Tag Archives: chess olympiad

Remembering a genius.

Vugar Gashimov was one of the greatest talents that chess has seen in the last 20 years. A player with an unique vision of chess who made every game entertaining in his own way. Gashimov often chose sharp openings, full of play, no matter what the theoretical reputation of that line was. He was never afraid to take risks and he became the secret idol of many chess fans who enjoyed following his games all the time (The writer of these lines is one of them).

More than once Gashimov was compared to Mihail Tal – the Tal of our times, they used to say. Not only their playing style was similar, but also their opening choices, with the Benoni and 6.Bg5 against the Najdorf as main points of comparison.

I met Gashimov in 2004, over the board. It was the Calvia Olympiad and I was representing Chile at that time.… Read more

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Solution to last diagram.

One week ago I shared in this blog a position from my game against Lubomir Facnik where I missed a huge opportunity to win the game. The position was this:

Ftacnik-CastellanosFtacnik (2597) – Castellanos (2467)
Black to Play

In the game I continued with 50…Nf4?? and after 51.a7 Qf1 52.Qf2 Qh3+ 53.Kg1 black loses since there is no move and white will simply play 54.a8 = Q

However, I could have won the game if I had played 50…Ng5!! the knight cannot be taken because the rook on a2 is hanging and the threat of Nxf3 is not easy to stop. See the next diagram:


White is now lost. There is no defense against Nxf3. For example:

a) 51.Ra3 Qxa6!-+ 52.Rxa6 Nxf3+ 53.Kh3 Nxd2 the endgame seems winning for black.
b) 51.Qe2 Nxf3+ 52.Kg2 Qb3 -+ black has a very strong attack with h4-h3 coming.

It’s been already 9 years since this game was played, therefore it’s hard to draw any conclusions on why I lost this game.… Read more

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Almost ten years ago we were in Turin, Italy playing in the 37th Chess Olympiad. I used to represent Chile back then before I moved permanently to Spain and changed federations. Playing the Olympiad was a great experience, and although my result was a little dissapointing with only 5 points out of 12 games, I don’t have a bad memory from the tournament.

182382_4060179346647_1973820850_nA picture of me (left) playing against Brian Kelly (Ireland) 

551125_4060180906686_1469065374_nThe playing hall in Turin Chess Olympiad.

The following position occurred in my game against the strong GM Lubomir Ftacnik (Slovak). I missed a big opportunity  to win it. Can you find the best move for black?

Ftacnik-CastellanosFtacnik (2597) – Castellanos (2467)
Black to Play

Written by (IM) Renier CastellanosRead more

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Morning chess tactic

The following position is from my game against GM Gilberto Hernandez from México. The game was played in a closed tournament in Cullera, in 2004. I finished 4th and achieved my final International Master norm. Having a look at some of the games from that tournament, I can say that I was very lucky to have ended the tournament undefeated.

Hernandez, G – Castellanos,R
White to play

Written by (IM) Renier Castellanos

Următoarea poziție este din partida jucată împotriva marelui maestru Mexican Gilberto Hernandez într-un turneu închis ce s-a desfășurat în Cullera, 2004. Am terminat acel turneu pe locul 4, reușind astfel să obțin ultima normă de Maestru Internațional. Uitându-mă acum peste partidel jucate în acel turneu, pot spune că am fost foarte norocos să închei neînvins. Va propun în continuare spre rezolvare această diagramă, în care albul este la mutare.

La posición del diagrama pertenece a mi partida con el Gran Maestro mexicano Gilberto Hernández.Read more

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