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Written by Wouter van Rijn   


My name is Wouter van Rijn – no, no relation to Uncle Anton. I am 30 years old and I live in Arnhem. I find it really exciting to participate in this tournament, which is why it wasn’t a hard decision for me to accept the invitation. So far I’ve played in a closed tournament once: in a master tournament in Aarhus, Denmark. In spite of my 2 out of 9 score I enjoyed it very much and I spent some enjoyable days in that town.

My play could be described as whimsical, so my results tend to vary quite a lot. I can lose against weaker players and I can beat stronger players. In two national competition seasons I didn’t win a single game in 15 games, but during this season I did win the Open Championship of Arnhem with 5½/6. After becoming an FM I lost around 100 Elo points in one year in which I didn’t play much, but then I won almost half these points back by bringing the Arnhem Open to my name (+2.37 in 6 games!!!).Judging by my rating I should be among the favourites in this group, but, knowing myself, these numbers will count for nothing. I suspect my final score will be somewhere between 2 and 7 out of 9.

Before this tournament I will spend the summer playing the Czech Open in Pardubice with a couple of friends. And in September, I will be allowed to participate for the Dutch Defence team in the NATO Championships. All in all it will be a busy second half of the year for me, chess-wise.

Besides chess I play pool competitively. Also, I have joined the poker hype; I play regularly with friends and sometimes enter a tournament. When I have time left, I like to play tennis, squash, soccer, or just have a beer with friends.