It was a great start of the VIII IBCA World Team Chess Championship 2018

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   On July 21st 2018 started the 8th IBCA World Team Chess Championship for Blind and Visually Impaired people in Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria. The opening ceremony was in the hostile and chess styled atmosphere of the Efe hall of hotel Marinela in the capital of Bulgaria.  The organizers are the International Braille Chess Association (IBCA) and the Bulgarian Federation “Sports for Visually Impaired”.

The Chairman of the Bulgarian Sports Federation Sport for the Visually Impaired People, Ivan Yanev  greeted the guests and expressed his satisfaction with the fulfillment of the federation idea to host the World Team Chess Championship for Blind and Visually Impaired.

   This is the first world chess championship for people with visual disabilities in the history of Bulgarian sport and one of the biggest sport events for visually disabled people since 1983 when Bulgaria hosted the European athletics championship for visually impaired people. The efforts to provide resources and support for the organization of the large chess forum started in 2015. The federation got the cooperation of the Union of the Blind in Bulgaria, the Sofia Municipality and the Ministry of Youth and Sports.

Мany popular persons stand behind the championship`s organization - the minister of Bulgarian sports Krasen Kralev, the major of Sofia - Yordanka Fadakova, Angelina Angelova, PR director of Victoria group and administrative director of Marinela group as well as many world famous Bulgarian champions - Rumyana Neykova, Maria Grozdeva, Mirela Demireva, Teresa Marinova, Plamen Markov and Dinko Agelov, paraolympic medalist as well as many others gave their support to the event which is part of the calendar of  Sofia as an European capital of sports in 2018.

   Greeting speeches gave: Vasil Dolapchiev - the chairman of the Bulgarian union of the blind; the chairman of the International Braille Chess Association (IBCA) Charudatta, Jadhav from India; Kristiyan Vigenin the chair of the Committee on European Affairs and Oversight of the European Funds. 
    The first moves in the tournament were made by Krasen Kralev, the Bulgarian minister of the youth and sports and IM Nizam Rasim.
    The promising visually impaired singers - Katrin Vitali and Virginiya Sabeva gave all the guests and participants the expected rest from the official part.
   In the championship take part the top 16 teams from the 15th IBCA Olympics, held in Macedonia in 2017. The teams come from 16 countries all over the world - Russia, Poland, Ukraine, Germany, Spain, Azerbaijan, India, Venezuela, Italy, Bulgaria, Great Britain, Macedonia, Slovenia,  Romania and Turkey. 2 groups consisting of 8 teams each contest in a 7 rounds league. Each team has 4 players.
 The media partner of the event ChessBomb is streaming the championship live and offers computer analyses of each move. A live streaming and a commentary studio is represented from the famous Bulgarian chess player and coach - Gm Alexander Delchev.

The rules in blind chess are same as those in normal chess. There are only a few modifications to the equipment aiding blind and visually impaired players. A special tactile boards and speaking chess clocks are used.

The squares on the tactile chessboard are a little raised above the white squares on the chessboard. By touching the squares, the player is able to determine whether the square is black or a white one. Each of the squares on the board has a hole in the center so that the chess pieces can be fixed in these holes with a downward projection (nail). It fits into the hole in the squares on the board. The black pieces are marked on their heads helping the player distinguish between a white and a piece.
After making every move, each player is required to announce their move to their opponent. Instead of writing the moves on a chess score sheet, the visually impaired player writes the moves in Braille or records the moves on a tape recorder. The online streaming on electronic chessboards is additionally assisted.
   On the first day 4 pairs of teams competed their chess strength -  Macedonia and Germany; Great Britain and Serbia; Bulgaria and Russia and Turkey and Venezuela.

   The pride and hope of the host team is the Bulgarian chess star Rasim Nizam. He is the first Bulgarian International Master of Sports with visual disability, holder of many Republican and Balkan chess titles. In 2015 he earned bronze medal at the World Team Chess Championship for Blind and Visually-Impaired in Seoul. In 2017 Nizam ranked 6th at the World Chess Championship for Disabled People in Dresden.

The results of group A after the first rounds in the first day of the competition.

  1. MACEDONIA (ACO: 1980 / TB1: 2 / TB2: 3.5) Captain: Nedev, Trajko
1Atanasov Sande1829MKD150015390.52.0
2Trkaljanov Vladimir2127MKD150004511.52.0
3Selkovski Zarko1900MKD150014900.52.0
4Kostadinovski Zoran1848MKD150023730.01.0
5Bajrami Zejno2044MKD150031321.01.0
  2. GREAT BRITAIN (Air: 1957 / TB1: 0 / TB2: 2.5) Captain: Armstrong, W
1CMRoss Chris N2214ENG4104111.52.0
2Hilton Stephen H1874SCO4150300.52.0
3Benson Paul J1928ENG4066780.52.0
4Armstrong William G1812ENG4137120.01.0
5Pennington Graham1701ENG4600010.01.0
  3. BULGARIA - 2 (Average: 1217 / TB1: 0 / TB2: 0.5) Captain: Patev, Petko
1Patev Petko1869FID29220610.02.0
2Atanassov Venko G.0BUL29389280.02.0
3Stoykov Stoyan0FID29239200.02.0
4Ganev Boyan P.0BUL29389100.52.0
  4. TURKEY (Caption: 1735 / TB1: 2 / TB2: 4) Captain: Yilmaz, Fatma
1Donmez Unal1871TUR63680771.02.0
2Deniz Ugur1820TUR63055981.02.0
3Solak Yusuf1627TUR63502321.02.0
4He gave Ibrahim1621TUR63521201.02.0
5Ev Emre1549TUR345013120.00.0
  5. VENEZUELA (Captain: 2029 / TB1: 0 / TB2: 1) Captain: Gamboa, Anibal
1IMGamboa Gonzalez Anibal2005VEN39001850.00.0
2Otero Munelo Harlen Jose2124VEN39020050.02.0
3Rivas Cabrera Edgar2041VEN39063290.52.0
4Abiad Parra Victor1945VEN39094680.02.0
5Munoz Gonzalez Aaron Adonai1687VEN39095570.52.0
  6. RUSSIA (AE: 2359 / TB1: 4 / TB2: 7,5) Captain: Meshkov, Yuri
1Smirnov Alexey2440RUS41684372.02.0
2FMBabarykin Stanislav2379RUS41018982.02.0
3IMMeshkov Yuri A.2322RUS41071010.00.0
4FMSuslov Evgeniy2294RUS241494112.02.0
5FMDraganov Ruslan2149RUS41087361.52.0
  7. SERBIA (Ar: 2202 / CB1: 4 / CB2: 7) Captain: Ivanovic, Nikola
1FMDimic Pavle2358SRB9374281.52.0
2CMJandric Damjan2197SRB9214751.52.0
3Janjic Stefan2125SRB9232652.02.0
4Markov Ziva2094SRB9182532.02.0
5FMAvram Sretko2126SRB9253140.00.0
  8. GERMANY (Cap: 2156 / TB1: 4 / TB2: 6) Captain: Bode, Wilfried
1IMMueller Oliver2291GER46333851.52.0
2CMEichstaedt Mirko2190GER246923101.02.0
3Adiyaman Rene2097GER129104141.01.0
4CMSchellmann Frank2046GER46699161.52.0
5Schulz Gert2005GER46223911.01.0

The results of group B after the first rounds in the first day of the competition.
 1. INDIA (Cap: 1799 / TB1: 2 / TB2: 4.5) Captain: Sagar Shah
1Gangolli Kishan1973IND50493501.02.0
2Soundarya Kumar Pradhan1808IND250518220.52.0
3Aryan B Joshi1623IND350559332.02.0
4Patra Subhendu Kumar1666IND466046340.00.0
5Makwana Ashvin K1749IND50819121.02.0
  2. ROMANIA (2001: TB1: 1 / TB2: 2.5) Captain: Pribeani Dacian
1AIMWidow Emil-Peter1940ROU12180690.02.0
2FMPribean Mihail-Dacian2141ROU12090941.52.0
3Marchidan Costica1805ROU12224810.01.0
4Dima Mihai1966ROU12173990.01.0
5Pirosca Alexandru1956ROU12111101.02.0
  3. SPAIN (HELP: 2150 / TB1: 3 / TB2: 5,5) Captain: Kogan, Artur
1Palacios Perez Manuel2196ESP22055051.52.0
2Clemente Llamero Roberto2140ESP22576961.02.0
3Fernandez Manrique Agustin2160ESP22310001.52.0
4Aguilar Sevilla Diego2102ESP22179451.01.0
5Draghici Flutur Gavril1989ESP12065080.51.0
  4. POLAND (Captain: 2309 / TB1: 4 / TB2: 8) Captain: Tazbir, M
1GMTazbir Marcin2525POL11224521.01.0
2Czajkowski Adam2232POL11519322.02.0
3IMDukaczewski Piotr2254POL11035202.02.0
4IMStachanczyk Jacek2223POL11166572.02.0
5Suder Ryszard2054POL11026991.01.0
  5. BULGARIA - I (1965 / TB1: 0 / TB2: 1) Captain: Razim, Nizam
1IMNizam Rasim2172FID29067081.02.0
2Todorov Aleksandar1945FID29018700.02.0
3Ivanov Ljubomir1796FID29037760.02.0
4Stoyanov Stojan Slavov1946FID29109180.02.0
  6. ITALY (Score: 1818 / TB1: 0 / TB2: 0.5) Captain: Gori, Andrea
1Vrioni Bersan1933ITA8053510.52.0
2Casadei Marco1881ITA8475420.02.0
3Gasperoni Claudio1789ITA8254500.02.0
4Murgia Stefano1667ITA8760110.02.0
5Laura Laura1515ITA28407700.00.0
  7. SLOVENIA (1972 / CB1: 2 / CB2: 4) Captain: Kasmac, Blaz
1Mlacnik Franc2035SLO146019231.02.0
2Matej was astonished1918SLO146043371.02.0
3Turicnik Vlado2001SLO146049301.52.0
4Muri Emil1836SLO146013540.51.0
5Ursic Aleksander1932SLO146056350.01.0
  8. UKRAINE (AE: 2276 / TB1: 4 / TB2: 6) Captain: Zsiltzova, L
1IMTuka Oleg2386UKR141144531.02.0
2CMGrigorchuk Sergey2292UKR141148792.02.0
3Kolpakov Vladyslav2121UKR141369960.01.0
4FMWassin Sergej2303UKR141034941.01.0
5Shepelev Igor2102UKR141149092.02.0
The championship arbiter's team is headed by Dr Radislav Atanasov, chess lecturer at the National Sports Academy. Among arbiters are the famous GM Emilia Djingirova and GM Rujka Geova. 
Explore the detailed results on http://chess-results.com/tnr364856.aspx?lan=24

Watch the games of the VIII IBCA World Team Chess Championship 2018 with computer analysis LIVE on ChessBomb. 

Watch live the commentary studio of GM's Alexander Delchev at the VIII World Chess Championship for Visually Impaired People 2018.

 Interesting reviews and comentaries are offered from of our guests from ChessBase India - Round 1 commentary.