Tournament Recap

The first Berlin U25 Open, in which 269 players from 23 nations participated, concluded successfully last Sunday with an award ceremony followed by an afterparty. The tournament at the Lankwitzer Beethoven Gymnasium went smoothly, and all minor and major challenges were successfully overcome.

For many, the tournament began on Saturday, October 21st, with the setup. Volunteers, including members of the organizing SV Königsjäger Süd-West e.V. club and parts of the arbiters team, helped preparing the tables for the games, layed carpets in the gymnasium, set up the playing equipment, and arranged the live broadcast.

The actual start of the tournament took place on Monday. At exactly 13:00, the tournament was opened by the team led by Chief Arbiter Carsten Haase, Chief Organizer Jonathan Born, and Chairman Torsten Rose, allowing the first round to commence at 13:20.

The atmosphere was excellent from the very first round in all playing areas. In the cafeteria, the first 46 boards of the A-Open were in action, providing spectators with the opportunity to watch grandmasters and international masters live, while most players participated in the first round in the large gymnasium. Additionally, Kristin Schäfer and Alois Möschl provided excellent refreshments, including sandwiches, fruits, and cakes, which were considered very affordable and satisfying from many perspectives.
Thank you, Kristin and Alois, without you, the tournament atmosphere would not have been the same!

Throughout the tournament, the positive atmosphere prevailed, even though many players were exhausted after double rounds. The arbiters team handled all emerging issues through open discussions and contributed to a positive atmosphere. Friday was particularly exciting as the C-Tournament concluded, and the award ceremony took place. Thanks to our learning partner “Chessable”, many young participants in the C-Tournament received their first DWZ ratings, and the feedback was consistently positive.

The A-Open and B-Open reached their peak over the weekend. FM Bennet Hagner maintained the lead in the A-Open and triumphed over strong grandmasters and international masters. He not only won an unusually high prize money of €5,000 but also achieved one of the required norms for the IM title. Many players who arrived from different parts of Europe achieved notable results. The top three in the A-Open, all with the same points, were completed by GM Szymon Gumularz from Poland in second place, winning €4,000, followed by IM Vadym Petrovskyi from Ukraine in third place, earning €3,000. Several players also reached an Elo rating of over 2300, a primary requirement for the FIDE Master title. Jáchym Šmolík from the Czech Republic, who finished in 7th place, also achieved an IM norm.

In the B-Open, many aspiring chess talents took impressive cash prizes home. Andrey Pichugov, who started the tournament with an incredible 7/7 and ultimately won with 7.5/9, received the top prize of €1,000 and returned to England, while Gustaf Klühs from Berlin narrowly secured second place and received €750.

After the conclusion of this incredibly strong U25 youth chess tournament, most participants made their way to the train station or the airport. However, some enjoyed the afterparty at the World Chess Club, where a large blitz tournament took place, and a DJ created a lively atmosphere.

What remains are contented faces and unforgettable memories. The organizers are already looking forward to planning and executing the 2nd Berlin U25 Open in 2024.

Tournament ended – Winner chosen

At the closing ceremony on October 29th, 43 winners of the A- and B-Opens won cash prizes. Following are the lists of rating cateories and overall winners.

  1. place A-Open: Bennet Hagner (center)
  2. place A-Open: Szymon Gumularz (left)
  3. place A-Open: Vadym Petrovskyi (right)
  1. place B-Open: Andrey Pichugov (center)
  2. place B-Open: Gustaf Klühs (right)
  3. place B-Open: Brian Heinze (left)
  4. Chief Arbiter Carsten Haase (rightmost)
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The 1st Berlin U25 Open & Carsten Haase

The chess club Königsjäger Süd-West e.V. organizes the 1st Berlin U25 Open in 2023. The podcast “Schachgeflüster” by Michael Busse, which is well known in Germany, interviewed the chief arbiter Carsten Haase in this context.
You can find the complete interview about our tournament on Youtube, Spotify and other platforms:



Playing area is prepared

Dear players,

the playing area is set up, let’s get started!

We would like to point out that the entrance is at the corner Dillgesstraße/Thaliaweg.

After a few withdrawals, we still have some remaining places in the A- and B-Open. We will give the places to the first interested persons at the registration.

See you in Berlin!

A- and B-Open fully booked – waiting list opened

We have already received (over) 230 registrations for the A and B Opens. Unfortunately, we only have a total of 230 available slots for the A and B Opens.

Some registrations are still pending as payments have not yet been made or are still in transit. This still provides an opportunity for new registrations to participate in the 1st Berlin U25 Open. However, for new registrations, we ask that you do not make any payments at this time.If spots become available, participants on the waiting list can pay on the first day of the tournament without any additional charges.

Currently, we are waiting for approximately 20 outstanding payments. If you want to secure a spot, please register as soon as possible.

People on the waiting list will be notified when a spot becomes available so you can plan your participation.

See you in Berlin!

List of Participants updated to October lists

According to the announcement of the 1st Berlin U25 Open the Elo and DWZ lists of October 1, 2023 are valid for the divisions of the tournaments (A, B or C). The participant lists have now been updated to these lists. The final classification into the tournaments has thus been made.

In addition, the three wildcards for the A-Open, which the organizer can award according to the announcement, have been assigned. They go to Katharina Reinecke, Daniel Rose and Philipp Sanders. Welcome to the A-Open.

See you in October in Berlin!

Title Norms: Foreigner Requirement no longer mandatory!

Exciting News for Aspiring Norm Achievers: Foreigner Requirement Lifted!

We’re thrilled to announce that the foreigner requirement is no longer in effect for our tournament. With 10 international players holding the title of WIM or higher and a minimum of 20 rated international players participating, we now qualify under FIDE Handbook B §1.4.3 (d):
“1.4.3 (d) [From the foreigner rule exempt are] Swiss System tournaments in which participants include in every round at least 20 FIDE rated players, not from the host federation, from at least 3 different federations, at least 10 of whom hold GM, IM, WGM, or WIM titles. […]”