The scorer of the "golden goal" in the match between Holland's Hoogeveen and Baku was the former Russian, Sergey Tiviakov.
After the end of play, Tiviakov gave an interview via the Russian interpreter, to the Arab TV presenter Khamed Насеру.
The Hoogeveen team was almost all members of the national side. There was one exception, Sergey Tiviakov. The Tiviakov who was the hero of the semifinal and final. After three draws, all attention in the playing hall was concentrated on Sergey's game against Nidzat Mamedov. The hero of our interview managed to win and bring his team to victory in an extremely tense final of the Sheikh Zayed Cup - Kema Goryeva.
- Sergey, did you feel the pressure and responsibility, while playing the final?
- Of course, I understood that my game against Mamedov was the decisive one. But, frankly, I am used to such emotional pressure. It is not the first time I have played for a team, so I felt the responsibility. I knew that victory depended on me.
- Your team was absolutely sure the game would be drawn. Everyone in the hall was getting ready for a tie-break. How did it happen that you won?
- After the opening, I was sure it would be a long game. We reached a position with opposite-coloured bishops. I won a pawn and obtained the advantage in the endgame. The position gave me a chance to exploit this, which took me almost 100 moves. I planned to do this and I did it. My opponent was in time-trouble. You can imagine the situation: he has little time, but needs to think, how to defend his remaining pawn. Of course, my opponent used a lot of energy. The conditions were unequal! As a result, he made a bad mistake and lost.
- Did you enjoy playing here in Al-Ain? Are you satisfied with the format of the championship?
- This was my second tournament in the UAE. Just a few months ago, I played the Open in Al-Fujarah. I like the conditions here, the living conditions, the food, the organisation overall. I would be happy to play here again, if other chess events were organised.
As for the format, this is very interesting. The KO is a tough format. The only thing I did not like was the starting time of the rounds. In my opinion, 6.00 in the evening is too late. You have to wait around all day until 6.00, and after the game, it is too late to do anything. I like to walk round, go on excusions, study something. Here, I managed to walk around the shore on the first day. But then I refrained from this. It was too hot during the day, and the hotel was a long way from the city centre. But everything else was just excellent.
- Victory is an excellent present for the New Year. What are your plans for the future?
- I am staying on here for a few days, to do some training with an Iranian player, a very talented boy. I am sure he has a big future in chess, if he works the right way.
- So you are not just a player, you are also a trainer?
- Yes, I like training work. I do a lot of work as a trainer for the Russian Chess Federation. When you train, you play better. It helps. As for tournaments, I will play at Wijk aan Zee, of course. Then a tournament in Iran. After that, we will see. You know that now the situation as regards tournament invitations is worse than before. I hope it will change soon. But certainly, I am impatiently awaiting a new visit to Al-Ain, to take part in the next World Cities Championship. I like it here.
World Cities 2012 Bulletin 7
Sergey Tiviakov "Ak Ain - I like it here"