The Incredible Grandmaster Dr-Bassem Amin Does It Again!!

Egyptian player Grandmaster Bassem Amin, who is also a Medical Doctor,  has done it again at the 2018 African Individual Chess Championships by winning the nine (9) round tournament with at least one round to spare. The Egyptian doctor proved once again why he is Africa’s Strongest chess player. He won the tournament in 2009, 2013, 2015, 2017 and 2018. If you look at the years that Bassem won the championship, you will notice something interesting, that from 2009 to 2017, all those years were odd numbered years. 2018 is the first Olympiad/Non World Cup year, that the doctor chosen to play in the African Individual Chess Championships. He has definitely been in a class of his own at this event.

Coming into the event Bassem was the top seed, well above the rest of the field and one can imagine that the pressure was on from the word go. The question on most people’s minds was who would stop the mighty contingent of Egyptian players? Would the Zambian players rise to the occasion on home ground in Livingstone?

In addition to winning the classical tournament, Bassem also won the blitz event and just missed another gold in the rapid version of the event where he claimed silver.

FIDE Master Harold Wanyama of Uganda had earlier joked that the Egyptian superstar was probably bored to play in the African Individual Chess Championships in 2018, when in all other years he played in World Cup qualifying years. As a doctor, the Grandmaster must already be an extremely busy man in his profession, but he still finds time to remain the top player on the continent.  How on earth does he do that? And we must remind the readers that the man qualified as a doctor before the age of the thirty (30) years. He has already reached the rating of 2700, a feat that many Grandmasters across the world will never achieve in their lives.

The doctor was completely unstoppable in the event. He won every single game he played, with the exception of one game where he dropped half a point in a draw with Egyptian counterpart and former World Junior Champion, GM Ahmed Adly. The Pharaohs were cleaning up at this event where they took the top 3 positions. International Master Andrew Kayonde of Zambia proved that after the Egyptian Grandmasters he is probably the strongest International Master on the continent coming in on fourth position, after picking up same points as GM El Gendy, who place third on tie break. The IM who is pushing hard to become the next continental Grandmaster will be very encouraged by his performance where he was playing some of the very best players on the continent.

A very pround champion, Grandmaster Bassem Amin

GM Dr Amin Bassem, 2018 African Chess Champion Classic and Blitz, plus rapid silver medalist

In this article we will go through one game after another from the champion. You can relive the magic from the tournament. One will need to go back to the archives to see if there has ever been such a dominant performance in this event. The performance by Dr Bassem Amin will be very hard to match, let alone beat. Because, to beat it, a player would need to win every single game in this super strong tournament.

It was a very long trip for the Egyptian players but with their dominance in the African Individuals Chess Championship, it has proven to definitely be worth it.

Now for the games. In Round 1 Bassem faced Candidate Master Musatwe Simutowe, older brother to Zambia’s Grandmaster Amon Simutowe:

[Event “2018 AFRICAN INDIVIDUAL CHESS CHAMPIONSH”]
[Site “WARM HARBOR HOTEL / KAAZMEIN L”]
[Date “2018.05.13”]
[Round “1.1”]
[White “Simutowe, Musatwe”]
[Black “Amin, Bassem”]
[Result “0-1”]
[ECO “A31”]
[WhiteElo “2201”]
[BlackElo “2667”]
[PlyCount “80”]
[EventDate “2018.05.13”]
[EventRounds “9”]
[EventCountry “ZAM”]

1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 c5 3. c4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 e5 5. Nb5 d5 6. cxd5 Bc5 7. e3 O-O 8.
Be2 Nxd5 9. O-O Nc6 10. N1c3 Nf6 11. Bf3 Be6 12. Na3 Qe7 13. Qe2 Rac8 14. Rd1
Nb4 15. Bd2 a6 16. Be1 b5 17. Rd2 Bf5 18. e4 Be6 19. Nc2 Bc4 20. Qd1 Nxc2 21.
Qxc2 b4 22. Na4 Ba7 23. Qd1 Rfd8 24. b3 Bb5 25. Rc1 Bd4 26. Rxc8 Rxc8 27. Rc2
Rd8 28. Qc1 a5 29. Rc7 Qd6 30. h3 h6 31. h4 Ne8 32. Rc8 Rxc8 33. Qxc8 Qc7 34.
Qxc7 Nxc7 35. g3 Bd3 36. Bd2 Bb1 37. Kf1 Bxa2 38. Bd1 Bb1 39. f3 Nb5 40. Ke2
Nc3+ 0-1

After the first round win, Bassem defeated CM Catarino Domingos of Angola in the second round:

[Event “2018 AFRICAN INDIVIDUAL CHESS CHAMPIONSH”]
[Site “WARM HARBOR HOTEL / KAAZMEIN L”]
[Date “2018.05.14”]
[Round “2.1”]
[White “Amin, Bassem”]
[Black “Domingos, Catarino”]
[Result “1-0”]
[ECO “D02”]
[WhiteElo “2667”]
[BlackElo “2281”]
[PlyCount “101”]
[EventDate “2018.05.13”]
[EventRounds “9”]
[EventCountry “ZAM”]

1. Nf3 d5 2. g3 Nf6 3. Bg2 Nc6 4. d4 Bf5 5. O-O e6 6. Nbd2 h6 7. c4 Nb4 8. a3
Bc2 9. Qe1 Nc6 10. b4 Be7 11. Bb2 O-O 12. Rc1 Bh7 13. Ne5 Nb8 14. e4 c6 15.
exd5 exd5 16. Qe3 Nbd7 17. Rfe1 Re8 18. Qb3 a6 19. cxd5 cxd5 20. Bh3 Nb6 21. a4
Nc8 22. Nf1 Bd6 23. Ne3 Ne7 24. Bg2 Qb6 25. Bc3 Rad8 26. a5 Qa7 27. b5 axb5 28.
Qxb5 Ne4 29. Bb2 Qa6 30. Bf1 Qa7 31. Rcd1 Bc7 32. Ra1 Nd2 33. Bg2 Qa6 34. Qb4
Ne4 35. Bf1 Qd6 36. Qa4 f6 37. Bb5 fxe5 38. Bxe8 Qf6 39. Ng4 Qf5 40. Rxe4 dxe4
41. Qc4+ Kh8 42. Qxc7 Rxe8 43. Ne3 Qf3 44. Qxe5 Rf8 45. Rf1 Nf5 46. d5 Rf7 47.
Nxf5 Qxf5 48. d6 Qxe5 49. Bxe5 Bf5 50. f4 exf3 51. Rxf3 1-0

The third round win against GM El Gindy was a very interesting one to follow, highlighting how to use the KID superbly:
[Event “2018 AFRICAN INDIVIDUAL CHESS CHAMPIONSH”]
[Site “WARM HARBOR HOTEL / KAAZMEIN L”]
[Date “2018.05.14”]
[Round “3.1”]
[White “El Gindy, Essam”]
[Black “Amin, Bassem”]
[Result “0-1”]
[ECO “A69”]
[WhiteElo “2453”]
[BlackElo “2667”]
[PlyCount “70”]
[EventDate “2018.05.13”]
[EventRounds “9”]
[EventCountry “ZAM”]1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. f4 c5 6. d5 O-O 7. Nf3 e6 8. Be2 exd5
9. cxd5 Nbd7 10. O-O Re8 11. Nd2 c4 12. e5 dxe5 13. Nxc4 Nb6 14. Nxe5 Nbxd5 15.
Qb3 Be6 16. Nxd5 Bxd5 17. Bc4 Bxc4 18. Qxc4 Qd5 19. Qb3 Rad8 20. Be3 a6 21.
Rad1 Qxb3 22. axb3 Nd5 23. Bd2 Bxe5 24. fxe5 Rxe5 25. Rc1 Re2 26. Bh6 f6 27.
Rfd1 Kf7 28. Rd2 Rxd2 29. Bxd2 Rd6 30. Rc8 Rb6 31. b4 h5 32. Rc4 Rc6 33. Rd4
Ke6 34. Rd3 Rc2 35. b3 Ke5 0-1
Both GM Ahmed Adly and Dr Bassem had been to virtually every tournament in the past couple of years together and it is only fitting that the only game Bassem did not win in the championship was against a formidable opponent in GM Adly. The game was played to a basic text book draw that both players know too well.

[Event “2018 AFRICAN INDIVIDUAL CHESS CHAMPIONSH”]
[Site “WARM HARBOR HOTEL / KAAZMEIN L”]
[Date “2018.05.15”]
[Round “4.1”]
[White “Amin, Bassem”]
[Black “Adly, Ahmed”]
[Result “1/2-1/2”]
[ECO “D14”]
[WhiteElo “2667”]
[BlackElo “2633”]
[PlyCount “62”]
[EventDate “2018.05.13”]
[EventRounds “9”]
[EventCountry “ZAM”]

1. c4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. cxd5 cxd5 4. Nc3 Nc6 5. Nf3 Nf6 6. Bf4 Bf5 7. e3 e6 8. Bd3
Bxd3 9. Qxd3 Bd6 10. Bxd6 Qxd6 11. O-O O-O 12. Rac1 Rfc8 13. a3 Qd8 14. Rc2 a6
15. Rfc1 Nd7 16. Na4 Ne7 17. Rxc8 Rxc8 18. Rxc8 Qxc8 19. Qc3 Qxc3 20. Nxc3 Kf8
21. Kf1 Ke8 22. Ke2 h6 23. Nd2 Nc6 24. f4 f5 25. g3 g6 26. h3 Ke7 27. Nb3 b6
28. Nc1 Nd8 29. Nd3 Nc6 30. Kd2 Kd6 31. b3 Ne7 1/2-1/2

 

The fifth round pitted GM Bassem against another countryman in GM Hesham, the 2016 Africa Individual Chess Champion, and just as though nothing could go wrong with the KID, GM Bassem used it to brilliantly dislodge GM Hesham yet again.

 

[Event “2018 AFRICAN INDIVIDUAL CHESS CHAMPIONSH”]
[Site “WARM HARBOR HOTEL / KAAZMEIN L”]
[Date “2018.05.16”]
[Round “5.1”]
[White “Hesham, Abdelrahman”]
[Black “Amin, Bassem”]
[Result “0-1”]
[ECO “A65”]
[WhiteElo “2413”]
[BlackElo “2667”]
[PlyCount “134”]
[EventDate “2018.05.13”]
[EventRounds “9”]
[EventCountry “ZAM”]

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. f3 O-O 6. Be3 c5 7. Nge2 Nc6 8. d5
Ne5 9. Ng3 e6 10. Be2 exd5 11. cxd5 a6 12. a4 Bd7 13. h3 b5 14. O-O Nc4 15.
Bxc4 bxc4 16. Qd2 Qe7 17. Bh6 Bxh6 18. Qxh6 Rab8 19. Rf2 Rb3 20. f4 Kh8 21. Qg5
Ng8 22. Qxe7 Nxe7 23. e5 Nxd5 24. Nxd5 Rxg3 25. Nb6 Be6 26. exd6 Rd3 27. d7 Rb8
28. a5 Bxd7 29. Nxc4 Be6 30. Nb6 Rb3 31. Kh2 h5 32. Re1 Rb4 33. Ra1 Rd8 34. Ra4
Kg7 35. Kg3 Rd3+ 36. Kh4 Rbb3 37. Ra3 Rxa3 38. bxa3 Rxa3 39. g4 f6 40. Rc2 hxg4
41. hxg4 Rxa5 42. Rd2 Ra1 43. Rd6 Kf7 44. Rc6 Rh1+ 45. Kg3 Rg1+ 46. Kf2 Rxg4
47. Rc7+ Ke8 48. Kf3 g5 49. fxg5 Rxg5 50. Na4 c4 51. Nc5 Bd5+ 52. Kf4 a5 53.
Na4 Bg8 54. Nc5 Kd8 55. Rc6 Rh5 56. Kg4 Re5 57. Kf4 Ke7 58. Na4 Be6 59. Nb6 Rb5
60. Ke3 Bd5 61. Nxd5+ Rxd5 62. Rxc4 Kd6 63. Rc8 f5 64. Kf4 Rc5 65. Ra8 Kc6 66.
Rb8 a4 67. Kg5 Ra5 0-1

Before the game between Bassem and Kayonde, there was debate online as to whether Kayonde (also known as AK47) would be the one to stop the Egyptian Grandmaster. Against e4, Kayonde switched to the Caro Kann, a defence he does not normally play. It was a big struggle and a battle of wits, in which Bassem sacrificed his queen for a Rook and Knight to come out victorious.

[Event “2018 AFRICAN INDIVIDUAL CHESS CHAMPIONSH”]
[Site “WARM HARBOR HOTEL / KAAZMEIN L”]
[Date “2018.05.18”]
[Round “6.1”]
[White “Amin, Bassem”]
[Black “Kayonde, Andrew”]
[Result “1-0”]
[ECO “B12”]
[WhiteElo “2667”]
[BlackElo “2394”]
[PlyCount “95”]
[EventDate “2018.05.13”]
[EventRounds “9”]
[EventCountry “ZAM”]

1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. e5 Bf5 4. Nf3 e6 5. Be2 Nd7 6. O-O Ne7 7. Nbd2 Nc8 8. a4
Be7 9. Nb3 O-O 10. a5 a6 11. Be3 Na7 12. Nfd2 c5 13. g4 Bg6 14. f4 c4 15. Nc1
f6 16. exf6 Nxf6 17. c3 Nc6 18. b4 Na7 19. g5 Ne4 20. Nxe4 Bxe4 21. Bh5 Nb5 22.
Ne2 Bd3 23. Bd2 Bd6 24. Qe1 g6 25. Bg4 Qd7 26. Rf2 Rae8 27. Ng3 Rf7 28. Qe3 Nc7
29. Re1 Bf5 30. Bd1 Ref8 31. Nxf5 exf5 32. Rfe2 Re8 33. Qxe8+ Nxe8 34. Rxe8+
Kg7 35. Bf3 Be7 36. Ra8 Bf8 37. Ree8 Qa4 38. Bxd5 Qd1+ 39. Be1 Rd7 40. Bxc4 Qc1
41. h4 h5 42. Kg2 Rc7 43. Bd5 Rxc3 44. Bxc3 Qxc3 45. Rad8 Qd2+ 46. Kg3 Qc3+ 47.
Bf3 Qxb4 48. Rd7+ 1-0

 

After the battle with IM Andrew Kayonde, everyoneon the African scene knew that this was over, as the Doctor would perform successful operations on every other players in the field without fail. And that was exactly what happened. So much so, that Dr Bassem won the tournament with a round to spare, but still went ahead to win the last few rounds in calm fashion against the big IM Chitumbo Mwali, CM Paiva Donaldo (Mozambique National Chess Champion), and IM Gillian Bwalya, to finish the tournament with a whooping eight and a half (8.5) points of the possible nine (9) points.

 

[Event “2018 AFRICAN INDIVIDUAL CHESS CHAMPIONSH”]
[Site “WARM HARBOR HOTEL / KAAZMEIN L”]
[Date “2018.05.18”]
[Round “7.1”]
[White “Amin, Bassem”]
[Black “Chitumbo, Mwali”]
[Result “1-0”]
[ECO “C26”]
[WhiteElo “2667”]
[BlackElo “2322”]
[PlyCount “114”]
[EventDate “2018.05.13”]
[EventRounds “7”]
[EventCountry “ZAM”]

1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. g3 Nf6 4. Bg2 Bc5 5. d3 a6 6. Nf3 d6 7. O-O h6 8. Be3
O-O 9. Bxc5 dxc5 10. Nd2 Be6 11. f4 Bg4 12. Qe1 Nd7 13. h3 Bh5 14. g4 Bg6 15.
f5 Bh7 16. Nd5 f6 17. h4 Nb6 18. Ne3 Kf7 19. Qf2 Ke8 20. Nd5 Qd6 21. a3 Bg8 22.
Rad1 Nxd5 23. exd5 Bxd5 24. Nc4 Qd7 25. Qxc5 Bxg2 26. Kxg2 Rd8 27. c3 Qd5+ 28.
Qxd5 Rxd5 29. Kf3 Kf7 30. Rg1 Ne7 31. Ke4 c6 32. Ne3 Rd7 33. g5 hxg5 34. hxg5
Rh8 35. Rh1 Rxh1 36. Rxh1 Ng8 37. Ng4 Re7 38. g6+ Kf8 39. a4 Re8 40. a5 Rd8 41.
Rh8 Ke7 42. b4 Re8 43. Rh7 Kf8 44. Ne3 Nh6 45. Rh8+ Ke7 46. Rh7 Kf8 47. Nf1 Rd8
48. Ng3 Rd7 49. Rh8+ Ng8 50. Ke3 Rd8 51. Ne4 Ke7 52. Rh7 Nh6 53. Rxg7+ Kf8 54.
Rxb7 Nxf5+ 55. Kd2 Ne7 56. Nc5 Re8 57. Nxa6 Nxg6 1-0

 

We hope you have enjoyed our recount of the victory of GM Dr Bassem Amin, the “Pharaoh” above all chess playing Africans!

2 thoughts on “The Incredible Grandmaster Dr-Bassem Amin Does It Again!!

  • May 24, 2018 at 11:50 am
    Permalink

    wow. great piece you have here. watched the GM play. he is good at what he does

    Reply
    • May 24, 2018 at 11:54 am
      Permalink

      Thank you very much for your kind words Dayzee. It is just amazing how someone can perform at this level for so long.

      Reply

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