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This past week, we were honored to run a Chess Elective at the One-Week long Hope Kids Summer Camp in Oakville. With a total of 33 kids in both the morning and afternoon sessions, we had a lot of fun teaching and coaching the kids board visualization, piece play and protection, tactics & strategies.

The kids had opportunities to play games as we had competitive games each day with a Champion in each of the sessions. Overall, we all had a great experience including the workers, volunteers and the kids. A big thanks for Hope Bible Church for giving us the opportunity to run a chess elective this year and a big thank you to all our workers and volunteers. Click here for a short video highlight of Day 2.

Next week, from Monday, July 22 we begin another week-long camp here in Oakville with more chess, soccer, basketball and money management for kids. We are excited and look forward to another great week working with kids. To learn more about our upcoming camp, click here.

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We saw history in the making, as Magnus Carlsen won his eighth tournament in a row at the second leg of the Grand Chess Tour in Zagreb. The world champion defeated Maxime Vachier-Lagrave from the white side of a Grüenfeld to finish in clear first place a full point ahead of his closest pursuer with a ‘plus five’ score. Carlsen’s official rating in August will equal his own peak rating of 2882 points — the highest ever achieved.

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Aleksandra Goryachkina of Russia, the youngest participant in the field, has secured victory at the FIDE Women’s Candidates Tournament in Kazan, Russia. The 20-year-old GM has a 2.5-point lead over Anna Muzychuk (Ukraine) with two rounds to go.

“She came, she saw and she conquered,” accurately describes Goryachkina’s performance at the women’s candidates. Her magnificent score of 9 points out of 12 has not only netted her a 50,000-euro first prize (with two whole rounds to spare), but more importantly she can now challenge the crown of Women’s World Champion Ju Wenjun.

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The Candidates Tournament is taking place in Kazan, Russia, from May 29 to June 19, 2019. Eight strongest female grandmasters are playing in the competition with a prize fund of 200,000 Euros, the largest in history for a tournament of this kind. The participants are Mariya Muzychuk(Ukraine, 2563), Kateryna Lagno(Russia, 2554), Alexandra Kosteniuk(Russia, 2546), Anna Muzychuk (Ukraine, 2539), Aleksandra Goryachkina(Russia, 2522), Tan Zhongyi(China, 2513), Nana Dzagnidze(Georgia, 2510), and Valentina Gunina(Russia, 2506).

The tournament is a double round round-robin. The winner of the FIDE Women’s Candidates Tournament qualifies for the World Championship Match with Ju Wenjun(China), where both players will compete for a total prize fund of 500,000 Euros (after taxes).

The third round of the event which just wrapped up saw four wins coming with the white pieces including one each by the leaders Dzagnidze and Gunina.

Learn more here…

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The 6-round 2019 Ontario Open was successfully completed last weekend in Oakville. It was a close battle in all sections and particularly in the Championship section where there was a 3-way tie for first place with two GMs and an FM. You can see all the final results and standings in all sections here.

A total of 40 players made the $8,000 prize money list at the end of the championship. For a full list of the prize money list, click here.

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Magnus Carlsen is still first in the Côte d’Ivoire Rapid & Blitz after one day of blitz. However, not everything went according to the script for the world champion, who had a tough day at the Pullman hotel in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, but managed to be on top of things nonetheless.

The threat to Carlsen’s domain in the tournament came from an incredibly motivated MaximeVachier-Lagrave. The French grandmaster, who had finished the rapid phase of the event with three wins in the last round, beat direct competitors Carlsen and Hikaru Nakamura in an eight-win streak that got him on the trail of the world champion despite losing against an always resourceful Veselin Topalov.

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Magnus Carlsen kept his full-point lead at the Grenke Chess Classic with a win vs Levon Aronian on Saturday. The only player trailing him by a point is Fabiano Caruana, who defeated Arkadij NaiditschViswanathan Anand suffered his second loss in a row, vs Georg Meier.

A day after being completely exhausted, and expressing his win against Meier as “an absolute mess,” an energetic Carlsen scored an ultra-smooth victory over Aronian. Sitting next to him in the studio, commentator Peter Leko remarked: “If you are tired and you play like this like you did today, it’s quite scary!”

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Sergey Karjakin joined Magnus Carlsen in first place at the Gashimov Memorial in Shamkir, Azerbaijan. The Russian grandmaster used deep preparation and great endgame technique to beat Viswanathan Anand.

During the round, Sergey Karjakin‘s wife Galiya and his oldest son Alexei had arrived in Shamkir and so it was in the press room where the family first saw each other again. When his father came in, the little boy interrupted the commentary and shouted “papa!!” before being picked up.

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An 8-year-old Nigerian refugee was just crowned a chess champion in New York’s statewide competition.

Tanitoluwa Adewumi, who lives in a Manhattan homeless shelter with his family, won the kindergarten through third grade category in New York’s chess championship last weekend with an undefeated performance, according to New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof.

As the writer shares, this is another story of a kid overcoming life’s basic truth that talent is universal, but opportunity is not.

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The World Team Chess Championship is underway in Kazakhstan. After round 4, Russia is on top of both the Women’s and Men’s sections. Ten top teams from around the world are competing for the team championship in both sections.

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