Turkish (Turkiye)English (United Kingdom)




Interview with Oleg Barantsev
Date of birth: 18.05.1976
Federation: Russia
Profession: Key account manager in Russian IT Company

Anastasiya Karlovich: When did you start playing chess?

Oleg Barantsev: I started playing chess when I was 6 years old. I became candidate quite quickly at the age of 14. I can say that Peter Svidler got the same title at the same age. I was born in St. Petersburg. I am coming from the same generation with Svidler, Emelin, Lugovoi and we played the same tournaments. I think I had some chances to become a good player but I had no opportunity to progress in chess. In 1992 "new" Russia appeared, so I stopped playing chess at that moment, my attention switched on to different things – I started to work.

A.K.: Did you continue playing chess in next years?

O.B. Very rarely...I played against somebody in blind chess or in blitz from time to time. When I got a chance to play through internet, I started to play blitz on bereg.ru then chess.com.

A.K.: Why did you decide to come to play here? Is it your first World Amateur Chess Tournament?

O.B.: Yes, it's my first tournament and probably the last one(laughing). I will start my story from afar... Last year I had honeymoon with my wife and we decided to go to Aruba, little island. I found local chess federation and asked them if I can visit them and maybe play few games with the local chess players. When we came to the island, I visited the chess federation and won against all players from the national team of Aruba except the leader of the team who refused to play with me.


During the first round

A.K.: Don't you think he didn't want to lose his prestige?

O.B.: No, his rating is 2100, so probably I would lose that game. In any case I was in a very good mood after that trip. I also gave simultaneous to local children... Few months ago my brother told me about World Amateur Championship and asked me if I want to go there. In the end of May my wife gave a birth to my daughter, so I forgot about the tournament.

A.K.: How did your wife react when you decided to play here?

O.B.: I came here after a big scandal of course! (laughing) She was against this idea but I found good arguments. The average rating of the players from Aruba was about 1950-1970, so I thought I could have some chances here.

A.K.: Did you make any special preparation before the event?

O.B.: Yes, I started to train after I made a decision to go there. I found a chess club in St. Petersburg and started to play in blitz and rapid tournaments. I saw that I was able to fight against good players with 2300-2400 Elo and I even won against FIDE Master. I thought I had enough level to play here. There was a funny accident last week. One bar in St. Petersburg arranged a blitz tournament with nice prizes 35000 and 15000 rubles (around 1200 $, A.K.). I reached the final. There were also one foreigner and one unknown Russian speaking player. I won against the foreigner and started to play with a stranger. I asked him about his level and he told me that 20 years ago he played as a standard candidate. I lost two games without any chances and felt really bad about it. Altough I won the second price. I was thinking that maybe it's a bad idea to go to the World Amateur with such a level...I asked his name and later on I decided to find him. I was really surprised to see that he has GM title!

A.K.: Can you tell the name of GM who almost "convince" you to cancel your participation in the World Amateur?

O.B. His name is Maxim Novik. I even wrote him a letter with words "it's not fair!" (laughing) Maybe he was a strong candidate before but he improved since that time and became a GM. He works in Khalifman's school and also has a little business connecting with selling of tea. So I also gave him an advice how to improve his business because it's related with my profession. He answered me and told me if I have questions connected with chess I can also ask him. So yesterday I send him a message because I had a question about my game.

A.K.: What is your goal in this tournament?

O.B.: I came to win it of course! But now I see that it's not easy to become first because I don't show enough level. If there would be a blitz tournament I think I have better chances. 20 years without practice made its job – it's not easy to be concentrated during all game.

A.K.: What do you think about the organisation?

O.B.: After I lost yesterday, my wife told me to enjoy time here. She told me to sleep properly, to relax and play with pleasure and not think about the result. The organisation is very good here and the playing hall is amazing! Hotel is also good, it's just a pity for me that internet is slow and I can not upload photos from here.

A.K. I wish you good luck in the tournament!

O.B. Thank you!


Right before the 3rd round

Turkish Chess Federation © 2011