Anna Ushenina (Ukraine) became the winner of the Women’s Speed Championship. In a dramatic Super Final that was decided in the last bullet game, she defeated the reigning European Blitz Champion Alexandra Kosteniuk 14.5-13.5.
In this marathon duel full of twists and turns the opponents were worthy of each other. During 5+1 part Kosteniuk was slightly more precise and cool-headed at the critical moments – especially in time scramble – and pulled ahead 5.5-3.5.
Known as an expert in faster time controls, Ushenina showed her prowess in the 3+1 portion of the match. The Ukrainian stormed back by winning three straight games and took the lead, but Kosteniuk recovered from the shock and leveled the score going into the final 1+1 stage.
The final portion of this clash turned into a real thriller. After Ushenina edged ahead by two points with just about twelve minutes remaining on the clock many may have thought that it was all over for the Russian. However, Alexandra reeled off two straight wins to even the score once again. It came down to the wire in the end as the victory in final see-saw bullet game tipped the scale in favor of Anna Ushenina.
“I tried to play solid chess because Alexandra is a very good player. I know that she is very strong in sharp, tactical positions and likes to attack, so I tried to avoid that… I am really happy to win the title” told the champion in a short interview after the match.