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San Jose Hackers Triumphed in Super Saturday. Here’s How.

Posted: 1 year, 1 month ago

By IM Vignesh Panchanatham

The Pro Chess League held their first of two Super Saturdays this past weekend, pitting full divisions against each other. The Pacific Division faced off against the Atlantic division and the Central Division clashed with the Eastern Division.

In this special Pro Chess League format, every team plays against each of the 8 teams in their opposing division in 8 single-round matches with a 10+2 time control. All sixteen teams in a match are ranked based on the total number of game points, with the maximum being 32 points. The top 6 teams earn a win, the middle 4 receive a draw, and the last 6 receive a loss. 

The San Jose Hackers fielded their strongest lineup, coming in just under a 2500 average rating. On board 1, GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, the current world number 2, held down the fort. GM Rauf Mamedov, current FIDE #40, followed on board 2. On board 3, GM Zviad Izoria looked to continue his solid Pro Chess League performances in the last few weeks. To keep the team under the rating limit, the Hackers enlisted the help of well underrated local junior master, Vinesh Ravuri, on board 4.

The Hackers faced off against the Buenos Aires Krakens, the Miami Champions, the Minnesota Blizzard, the Montclair Sopranos, the Montreal Chessbrahs, the Pittsburgh Pawngrabbers, the St. Louis Arch Bishops, and the Webster Windmills. With four strong individual results, the Hackers blasted by the rest of the competition and finished with 21.5 game points, a full point and a half ahead of their closest rivals, the Chengdu Pandas. GM Mamedyarov scored 6 points, GM Mamedov took home 5 points, GM Izoria kept up his solid performance with 5.5 points, and Vinesh Ravuri came through with an amazing 5 points despite being one of the lowest players on the day!

Watch the highlight reel on YouTube narrated by local IM David Preuss and GM Robert Hess.

The amazing win jumped the Hackers back into 5th place in the Pacific Division, and also gave them more game points – crucial for tiebreakers - than several teams with more match wins. Watch out for the Hackers tonight as they take on the Las Vegas Desert Rats at 6:20 PST. Follow the match live at www.Twitch.TV/HelloKostya

Also, check out the BayAreaChess Instagram channel for previews of matches with the lineups, managed by myself.