The European Individual Chess Championship 2015 was the sixteenth in the annual series of European continental championships that were first staged in 2000. The top 23 places qualified for the World Cup 2015. 250 players competed.
24 February 2015 to 8 March 2015.
In the Jerusalem Ramada Hotel in Jerusalem, Israel.
11 round Swiss system.
The rate of play was 90 minutes for 40 moves plus 30 minutes for the rest of the game, with an increment of 30 seconds per move, starting from move one.
1. Average rating of the opponents cut - 1, the highest number wins
(unplayed games, byes are not calculated);
2. Buchholz cut - 1, (the Buchholz score reduced by the lowest score of the opponents);
3. Buchholz, (the sum of the scores of each of the opponents of a player);
4. Most wins.
The total prize €120 000, distributed as follows:
<Main prizes totaling €93,750>
1st €16,000 7th €5,000 13th €2,000
2nd €14,000 8th €4,000 14th €1,700
3rd €12,000 9th €3,500 15th €1,500
4th €10,000 10th €3,000 16th €1,250
5th €8,000 11th €2,500 17th €1,000
6th €6,000 12th €2,250 18th €1,200
<Other prizes - €26,250>
There were thirteen prizes worth a total of €6,250 for best performances above rating and five prizes totaling €10,000 for the best results for seniors who turned fifty or more in 2015. There were twenty additional prizes of €500 each to ACP premium members who didn't win a higher prize in this championship.
Round one of the championship saw a surprising number of draws on the top boards, with nearly half of the top (ie: 9/20) games drawn between the top seeded players and opponents rated more than 250 points below them. The biggest upset of the round was seed #140 Alexey Sarana (2419) defeating #16 seed, Sergei Zhigalko (2675). 101 players won their game. A minor surprise was that all registered players finished their games with no withdrawals occurring.
In round two, over half the top twenty boards were drawn, although the rating differential between opponents on this occasion was narrower than in the first round, all but two being differentials of between 100 and 150 (the other two being slightly less). 26 players scored their second consecutive win.
Five joint leaders emerged in round three, having won three consecutive games, namely David Navara, Korobov, Evgeniy Najer, Constantin Lupulescu and Yuri Vovk. The chasing pack on 2.5 points had 37 players. Anton Korobov was the only player to win four consecutive games and thereby became the sole leader after the fourth round, with eight players chasing on 3.5 points.
Korobov maintained his sole lead in the fifth round after drawing with Navara, as none of the chasing pack scored a win. However that pack, sitting on 4/5, swelled substantially to fifteen players with a number of victories in the third tier. Sarana scored another high profile victory when he defeated Kiril Georgiev. Goryachkina was the best performing woman, coming back from a first round loss to Vitiugov to win the next three games, including a fourth round win against Mihail Marin. Four players were yet to get off the mark.
Round six and Korobov tumbled back into shared fifth after his loss to Ian Nepomniachtchi, who took the shared lead on 5/6 with Bartel, Sargissian and Motylev. Goryachkina was unable to maintain her momentum, losing to Ivan Popov. There were twenty one players on 4.5/6, half a point behind the four joint leaders. Only one player, an untitled local, was on zero at this stage.
In round seven, all four leaders drew their games while five of the trailing pack caught up with wins to produce a nine-way shared leadership sitting on 5.5/7 at this juncture, with another 21 players only half a point behind. Goryachkina lost again, this time to Zubov, and the last player to get off the mark finally won his first game. All players had now scored a draw or better. Vladimir Shtivelband forfeited his game and was the only player to withdraw from the event.
Round eight and four of the five games of the leader group were drawn, the exception being Nepomniachtchi who defeated David Howell to take the sole lead with 6.5/8 points. Thirteen players were on 6/8 at the end of this round. The leading woman, Goryachkina, drew with fellow teenager Grigoriy Oparin.
Come round nine and Nepomniachtchi immediately relinquished his lead when he lost to David Navara, who was joined in the lead by Evgeniy Najer and Anton Korobov on 7/9. Goryachkina beat Ralf Schnabel to move to 5/9. Eleven players were half a point from the lead. In round ten, Najer moved into the sole lead when he beat Korobov, as Navara drew his game.
In the final round, Najer took the event with outright first place after he drew his game with Khismatullin.
European Individual Championship (2016)
Complete Results and Standings