This is the second leg of four in the Women's Grand Prix series 2016 which will determine the challenger for the women's crown in 2017. (1) The first leg in Monte Carlo was easily won by Hou Yifan who gained the maximum 160 Grand Prix points for her result. The third leg will be in Tbilisi in Georgia in May 2016 and the fourth and final leg in Chengdu in China.
The first round commenced on Thursday 11 February 2016 with the eleventh and final round being played on Tuesday 23 February 2016. Rest days are 15 and 20 February.
Round robin, twelve players, eleven rounds.
For each player 90 minutes for the first 40 moves, followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game with an increment of 30 seconds per move from move one.
The rules stipulate that no tie breaks will be used in individual GP tournaments. Prizes and Grand Prix ranking points are shared equally where there are any tied placements. If there is a tie at the top of the Grand Prix points tally by the end of the last event, then the winner will be declared as follows, with successive tiebreakers being invoked if the earlier ones do not break the tie:
- No. of actual game result points scored in the three tournaments
- No. of 1st places
- No. of 2nd places
- No. of wins
- Drawing of lots
Prizes and Grand Prix points (2)
The total prizemoney for this event is €60,000 (nearly US $68,000). Grand Prix points awarded for each place in the event are in brackets after the prize money.
<1st Prize> €10,000 (160 pts) <4th Prize> €5,750 (90 pts) <7th Prize> €4,250 (60 pts) <10th Prize> €3,000 (30 pts)
<2nd Prize> €8,250 (130 pts) <5th Prize> €5,000 (80 pts) <8th Prize> €4,000 (50 pts) <11th Prize> €2,750 (20 pts)
<3rd Prize> €6.750 (110 pts) <6th Prize> €4,500 (70 pts) <9th Prize> €3,250 (40 pts) <12th Prize> €2,500 (10 pts)
Pogonina (85 GP points from Monaco) kicked off to an early lead in the second round when she was the only player to win her first two games and retained her lead through to and including round five. However a draw by Pogonina with Gunina and a win by Dzagnidze (50 GP points from Monaca) against Zhukova in round six enabled Dzagnidze to draw level with Pogonina to share the lead. They shared the lead for another round before a loss by Pogonina to Stefanova and a win by Dzagnidze over Harika in round eight enabled the Georgian to pull clear of the Russian to take the sole lead, which only lasted for that round.
In round 9, Dzagnidze lost her game, as did Pogonina in her game against Zhao Xue playing her first event in the GP, enabling the latter to grab the co-lead alongside the Georgian with 6.5/9. In round ten, both co-leaders were beaten and overtaken by their conquerors: Zhao Xue lost to Iranian teenager Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (who thereby gained her first GM norm) while Dzagnidze lost to Ju Wenjun, the two winners now sharing the lead with 7/10. In the final round, Ju Wenjun drew with Harika after 50 moves to remain undefeated and to win the tournament outright and take the maximum 160 GP points and €10,000 prize money, while Khademalsharieh was ground down by Zhukova in 74 moves to record her only loss of the event to share second place with Zhao Xue, each winning 120 GP points and €7,500 prize money.
(1) Wikipedia article: FIDE Women's Grand Prix 2015%E2%80%9316 (2) FIDE Regulation 7.1
Previous Women's GP event
Women's Grand Prix Monte Carlo (2015)