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8x8 Blunders wins Japan Team Chess Championship 2022 with a perfect score

by Mayur Gondhalekar - 21/10/2022

Every year Japan’s Chess calendar features one event specially as a competition between various teams. This year’s event definitely had shades of inspiration by the 44th Chess Olympiad held in India in July-August 2022. The Japan Team Chess Championship is a good opportunity for the various chess clubs in the country to cobble up a few teams and show who is the best in business. The event is not limited to existing chess clubs. Four or five players can get together, register a team and participate. Check out a pictorial report of the event written by Mayur Gondhalekar. Photo: Flipi Poggenpoel

Top two seeds finish in the same order

The Japan Team Chess Championship 2022 was held approximately a month after the players returned from the 44th Chess Olympiad held in India (which was also a team event). Surely the one event cast a positive light on the other, in that this year’s event saw the participation of as many as 36 teams, with each team sporting up to five members. That, in turn, made it the (OTB) event with the highest participation in the last three years with 165 players!

Japan Team Chess Champion 2022 - 8x8 Blunders 12/12 | Photo: National Chess Society of Japan

Japan no.6 - IM Ryosuke Nanjo at the center in the above photo.

Runner-up - Osaka Club Senior 10/12 | Photo: National Chess Society of Japan

Second Runner-up - Aichi Champions 10/12 | Photo: National Chess Society of Japan

The players of the top three teams | Photo: National Chess Society of Japan

All Category A winning teams - Tokyo Bilingual Chess Club B, TUCC OB andd 8x8 Checkmates  | Photo: National Chess Society of Japan

Nine titled players, including members of Japan’s Olympiad teams, as well as one of Japan’s top players – IM Ryosuke Nanjo – participated in the tournament. This was a six-round swiss tournament played over two days on September 17th and 18th, at Hokutopia, in Oji area of Tokyo, Japan, with a time-control of 45 mins + 30 secs/move from move one. Team could have up to five players on roll and up to four players playing in any of the rounds. I wanted to be part of this grand spectacle, but fates deigned otherwise. It is all thanks to my friend from Kansai area, Mr. Poggenpoel Flipi, who was kind enough to provide all the lovely photographs.

Team Kitasenju Chess Club being creative | Photo: National Chess Society of Japan

Team 8x8 Blunders won the event winning all six rounds. Teams Osaka Club Senior and Aichi Champions tied for second with five wins out, with Team Osaka Club Senior taking second place on better tie breaks.

The President and co-president of the National Chess Society of Japan – Mr. Manabe Hiroshi and Mr. Yamada Akihiro – addressing the participants | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

The playing hall and the mood of the event | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

Listing of the teams | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

Board pairings | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

A more traditional way of listing the pairings | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

Disinfection between the rounds | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

Between the rounds | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

Waiting to start the round... | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

The view (Tokyo) from the venue | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

In the second photo, the tower on the right is the “Tokyo Sky Tree” (634 m tall)

Team Osaka Club Regulars (L-R): Tabe Masaharu, Takayasu Nobuyuki, Takayasu Melody, Poggenpoel Flipi, Mizumoto Takahiro | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

Team Osaka Club Regulars in various rounds | Photo: Poggenpoel Flipi

The best players per board

Board #1

1CMTran Thanh Tu2567JPNOsaka Club Senior5,524162
2IMKojima Shinya2491JPNTabiya Chess Club524327
3CMAverbukh Alex2297JPNTokyo Bilingual Chess Club A4,5210826

Board #2

1Otawa Yuto2158JPNOsaka Club Senior5,522062
2Nakamura Ryuji2167JPNNurture5,519865
3FMYamada Kohei2258JPN8x8 Blunders524211

Board #3

1Higashino Tetsuo2138JPN8x8 Blunders5,521171
2Yamamoto Soichiro0JPNTodai Chess Circle A520819
3CMMatsuo Tomohiko2209JPNOsaka Club Senior520272

Board #4

1Takayasu Nobuyuki1567JPNOsaka Club Regulars517626
2Okabe Yuma1713JPNAichi Champions517103
3Sato Kaname2024JPN8x8 Blunders4,518061


Final standings

Rk.SNoTeamTeamGames  +   =   -  TB1  TB2  TB3  TB4 
118x8 Blunders8x8 B66001220,587,5289,5
22Osaka Club SeniorOsaka S6501101988,5258
35Aichi ChampionsAichi65011018,582236,3
414Keio OBKeio OB641191675,5186,8
610Osaka Club RegularsOsaka R6321816,565176
73Tabiya Chess ClubTabiya640281694,5227,5
87Tohoku University OBTohoku OB640281570,5168,5
99Todai Chess Circle ATodai A6312714,581181,3



Tournament details

National Chess Society of Japan

About the Author

Mayur is an IT engineer and a chess enthusiast from Mumbai, working in Japan since 2013. He has played over-the-board tournaments in India, USA and Japan. He has also been a top three finisher in a one-day OTB events in Japan in 2013, 2015, 2017 and online blitz in 2020. Currently he is making use of online platforms for chess improvement and learning Ayurveda. He loves salsa dancing, reading, traveling and teaching.

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