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Istanbul Diary

Daily report by GM Alexander Baburin from Turkey

Day 1  Day 2 & 3  Day 4 Day 5
Day 6 & 7 Day 8 & 9 Day 10 Day 11 
Day 12 Day 13 & 14 Day 15

Day Ten, 6th November 2000. Finally our team broke our losing series, as we beat Qatar 21/2-11/2. The score could be event better, but I lost the game where I had a big advantage. At some point I could take a draw by a perpetual check, but I decided to play on. My judgement was correct, but the execution was poor - one bad move and I found myself losing the game, which I had played very well. Well, losing is a part of the profession... I will annotate that game tomorrow.

Our ladies won again - their 4th victory in a row! This is probably the longest winning streak our team ever had. They beat the team from South Africa 2-1.

The day was tough for leaders in men's Olympiad as Germany lost to Ukraine - 11/2-21/2. Russia lost with the same score to Bulgaria, which becomes a bad tradition for the Russians, who also lost to Bulgarian in Elista (1998), Yerevan (1996) and Moscow (1994)! After 9 rounds Armenia and Germany are leading on 25 points, Ukraine is third with 241/2 points and then come Bulgaria and Russia on 24 points. Tomorrow the key matches are Armenia-Germany, Ukraine-Bulgaria and Russia-Romania.

In women's Olympiad the standings are: 1. China - 21 points; 2. Georgia - 201/2 points; 3-4 Russia and Netherlands - 181/2 points; 5. Ukraine - 18 points. Today Ukraine plays against China, Georgia against Romania and Russia against Netherlands.

With 5 rounds remaining the competition gets tougher. By the way, I should mention the official site of the Olympiad - There you can find game scores, match results, etc.

In the evening most on the Irish team went for a drink. Both local beer and wine are not bad. There are lots of people at the Taksim Square (the area around which most teams stay) and it's possible to find an open place at any time of the night. Actually, there are almost as many people around the Taksim Square at 2 in the morning as during the day - Istanbul keeps surprising us! Not everything is pleasant though - the city gets rather dirty in the end of a day. The streets are cleaned every night, but I wonder whether installing more bins could be a better solution. There is also a fare amount of hustling and begging in the streets.

More new from Istanbul will follow - come back tomorrow!

All text Copyright Alexander Baburin unless otherwise noted