Promising Start to Djerba Chess Festival Masters!

In the opening round of The Djerba Masters, American chess star Hans Moke Niemann triumphed over Norwegian contender Aryan Tari. Meanwhile, Indian prodigy Divya Deshmukh suffered defeat against Bilel Bellahcene's French Defense. 

On the other two boards, Marc'andria Maurizzi and Daniel Dardha made two solid draws with the Black pieces, respectively against the legend Vasyl Ivanchuk and the 2022 tournament winner Jules Moussard.

French GM Jules Moussard, the 2022 Djerba Chess Masters winner

GM Hans Neimann (highest rated player of the Masters) defeated his closest contender GM Aryan Tari as early as round 1

WGM Divya Doshmuck, the reigning Asian champion, lost her first game to the African reigning vice-champion GM Bilel Bellahcene

Reflecting on his win, Bellahcene states, "I feel like I played a good game. She surprised me in the opening with 11.Da4, which I had never seen before. I seized the opportunity to launch a kingside attack.

After exchanging the central d4-pawn for the g5-pawn, I believe I conducted my kingside attack well, although I think I missed easier wins towards the end."

Niemann shares insights on his victory over Tari, remarking, "I think he missed 9.e4! after which I gained a significant advantage.

I was imprecise with 17.Rc1 but still remained much better. Once I could consolidate the d6-pawn, it was merely about few difficult tactics under time pressure, but I was always in control."

You can watch Niemann’s analysis on his YouTube channel at:

This marks just the beginning of what promises to be an enthralling tournament filled with intense battles!

Stay tuned for more updates