MASTERS ROUND 10 & PLAY-OFFS: 30 JANUARY 2013
John Saunders reports: Nikita Vitiugov, from St Petersburg in Russia, won the Tradewise Gibraltar Masters title at the Caleta Hotel on Thursday after a pulsating play-off final against three times winner and reigning champion Nigel Short of England. Four players – the above two, plus Maxime Vachier-Lagrave of France and Chanda Sandipan of India – tied for first place on 8/10 after ten rounds of the tournament, necessitating a knock-out play-off to decide the winner of the £20,000 first prize.
Short beat Vachier-Lagrave and Vitiugov beat Sandipan in the two-game rapidplay play-off semi-finals. The final match between Vitiugov and Short was a thriller. The Russian, who will turn 26 in four days’ time, showed amazing coolness under pressure as he played out most of a 104-move game with only seconds available for each move, before finding a clever tactical trick to finish the game. In the second game Vitugov kept his opponent at bay for a draw which clinched the match 1½-½.
Hafid Ouass is today's winner of day 15 of our Photo Competition with this entitled "Stand Alone".
Keep on sending in your entries, there is still a few days to go.
The PDP notes with regret, that despite strongly worded protest from the Government and the Governor which translate into foreign office diplomatic protests, incursions into our sovereign waters persist and are escalating.
More alarming, matters have now escalated to a level that commercial activity has now been the subject of interruption in yesterday’s incursion. The PDP urges the Government not to underestimate the significance of this development. It marks a threat to one of Gibraltar’s economic pillars, namely port activity, bunkering and other related sea going business.
In a recent Viewpoint programme in which the PDP leader Nick Cruz, Chief Minister Fabian Picardo and GSD leader Peter Caruana took part, Mr Cruz predicted that if the issue was not nipped in the bud by the Government this development was likely to follow. All three leaders agreed that under our constitution the Governor was responsible for defence and the RGP for policing British Gibraltar Territorial Waters.
Team Gibraltar has won their first divisioning match against USA then lost to Egypt in a hard fought match. On 31st January they played for classification against Italy winning 6-3 and against Greece winning 8-2.
Both of these matches tested the strength of this, the first attempt at Unified Floor Hockey. This is a fast game with knocks and bumps despite well padded hands, shins and ankles.
The team’s intensive training beforehand is paying off now.