June 17, 2014 22:55

World Rapid: Half-Point Lead For Carlsen After Day 2 | UPDATE: Video

Magnus Carlsen is the sole leader at the FIDE World Rapid Championship in Dubai with five rounds to go. In round 10 the Norwegian defeated co-leader Fabiano Caruana of Italy in a direct confrontation and is now half a point ahead of Levon Aronian of Armenia, who defeated Hikaru Nakamura in Tuesday's final round. On Wednesday the decisive last five rounds will be played.

Magnus Carlsen bowling in Dubai (more on this below) - Photo courtesy of the Magnus Carlsen Facebook page

On what was another very hot day for most participants, but a normal one for Dubai standards, rounds 6-10 of the World Rapid Championship were played in the rook-shaped Dubai Chess & Culture Club. Luckily many of the technical problems of the first day were solved, and so the tournament was easier to follow for the chess fans at home.

Update: here's our video report, which includes interviews with the world's #1 and #2 of classical chess (and currently in the standings!) Magnus Carlsen and Levon Aronian:

The tournament is enjoying the luxury of having many of the world's best players among the participants, and even better: none of them is out of form. Not all of them had a good first day, but players like Carlsen, Aronian, Grischuk, Caruana, Anand, Nakamura, Karjakin and Svidler were all moving up to the top of the standings, and together with e.g. Ian Nepomniachtchi, Evgeny Tomashevsky and Yu Yangyi they will fight for the top prizes tomorrow.

Yesterday he told Chess.com that he was playing the tournament “just for fun”, and perhaps it was that mindset that helped Caruana to beat Nepomniachtchi on board one in Tuesday's starting round. He found a healthy set-up against the King's Indian Attack and slowly outplayed his opponent.

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Karjakin and Carlsen played a very interesting draw that started as a Sicilian Dragon (!). It's been a while, but Carlsen played that sharp variation four years ago in classical games as well.

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Karjakin-Carlsen, a fascinating Sicilian Dragon | Photo Anstasiya Karlovich

Sergei Movesian crushed Maxime Vachier-Lagrave using yet another 6th move against the Najdorf: the innocious-looking 6.a3!?

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KingLoek was undefeated after the first day, and continued very well:

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Alexander Morozevich won quickly against Judit Polgar using 2.b3 in the Sicilian:

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The 7th round saw lots of draws on the top boards: Caruana-Karjakin, Anand-Movsesian, Grischuk-Morozevich, and Carlsen-Fressinet. This time the Frenchman wasn't “too weak, too slow.” :-)

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Nepomniachtchi won a good game against Le Quang Liem to join Movsesian and Karjakin in second place, half a point behind Caruana.

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Nakamura joined the group of players with 5.0/7 after inflicting the first loss upon Van Wely.

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The 7th round lasted about 1.5 hours because of one game: Matlakov-Vakhidov, who reached a RN-R ending. Matlakov tried it for many moves (most probably more than fifty) before giving up his winning attempts, and it was all watched by the other participants on TV screens in the cafeteria.

Players watching the Matlakov-Vakhidov game...
 
...but finally there was a handshake!

Caruana maintained his lead in round 8 with a draw againt Movsesian, who was making a very solid impression. Nepomniachtchi and Karjakin also split the point, and the group of players behind Caruana became bigger. One of them was Nakamura, who beat Morozevich in an excellent game as Black. The American had no problems with that 2.b3 move!

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Nakamura, wearing the latest fashion today - a t-shirt that looks familiar

Grischuk then defeated his compatriot Tomashevsky from a Bishop's Game/Vienna.

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Carlsen outplayed Kryvoruchko from the black side of a 3.Bb5+ Sicilian that looked more like a Closed Ruy Lopez:

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Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son managed to hold Vishy Anand to a draw, while Aronian defeated Potkin, who has the tendency to go down in pretty fashion:

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Even though there was no long endgame this time, between the 8th and the 9th round there was a break of about 45 minutes anyway - because it was prayer time.

Carlsen had a different way of spending the break, as he posted on Facebook:

 

In round 9 Caruana-Grischuk and Nakamura-Nepomniachtchi ended in draws. Carlsen caught Caruana in first place thanks to a win against Movsesian, who was very disappointed - he probably thought the ending should have been holdable, and he was probably right.

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Karjakin lost his first game in round 9 (!) to Aronian. The Berlin Ending is always tricky.

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In an all-Indian match, Anand defeated Harikrishna convincingly:

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As in any Swiss event, the tournament leaders get paired against each other and so it was Carlsen vs Caruana in round 10! Via 1.d4 the players reached a Philidor and White was a bit better after the opening. A tactical sequence led to a passed a-pawn for Carlsen and he used more nice tactics to get it to the eighth rank:

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On board 2 Nakamura “chose the wrong plan”, according to Aronian, who reached a strategically winning position very early on. 

And so, with five rounds to go, Carlsen is on 8.0/10 and Aronian on 7.5/10. They will play each other on top board on Wednesday, and again the round starts at 15:00 local time (Dubai = GMT+4, so 13:00 Amsterdam, 12:00 London, 07:00 New York, 04:00 Los Angeles).

World Rapid Championship 2014 | Round 10 Standings (Top 40)

Rk. SNo Name Fed Rtg Pts. TB1 TB2 Perf
1 4 Carlsen Magnus NOR 2827 8 2713 54,5 2946
2 7 Aronian Levon ARM 2785 7,5 2687 51 2862
3 11 Nepomniachtchi Ian RUS 2768 7 2754 55,5 2890
4 2 Caruana Fabiano ITA 2840 7 2735 59,5 2876
5 31 Tomashevsky Evgeny RUS 2693 7 2706 54,5 2838
6 3 Grischuk Alexander RUS 2828 7 2700 55 2838
7 45 Yu Yangyi CHN 2668 7 2687 52 2807
8 9 Anand Viswanathan IND 2770 7 2684 53 2827
9 6 Svidler Peter RUS 2787 7 2662 53 2804
10 8 Karjakin Sergey RUS 2781 6,5 2741 61 2840
11 49 Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son VIE 2660 6,5 2731 54 2799
12 33 Jobava Baadur GEO 2688 6,5 2722 52,5 2810
13 1 Nakamura Hikaru USA 2841 6,5 2699 54,5 2792
14 28 Movsesian Sergei ARM 2696 6,5 2696 55,5 2776
15 15 Morozevich Alexander RUS 2732 6,5 2685 48,5 2775
16 13 Radjabov Teimour AZE 2750 6,5 2657 51 2751
17 34 Naiditsch Arkadij GER 2687 6,5 2638 51,5 2726
18 43 Van Wely Loek NED 2674 6 2728 53 2768
19 36 Fressinet Laurent FRA 2681 6 2722 55,5 2735
20 57 Iturrizaga Bonelli Eduardo VEN 2652 6 2720 53 2757
21 53 Bologan Viktor MDA 2656 6 2719 52,5 2744
22 68 Yudin Sergei RUS 2626 6 2717 51,5 2767
23 44 Guseinov Gadir AZE 2671 6 2716 55,5 2756
24 14 Vachier-Lagrave Maxime FRA 2749 6 2681 53,5 2747
25 18 Le Quang Liem VIE 2724 6 2675 55 2734
26 17 Harikrishna P. IND 2726 6 2674 51,5 2739
27 64 Adly Ahmed EGY 2634 6 2673 48,5 2717
28 59 Matlakov Maxim RUS 2649 6 2661 50,5 2681
29 32 Bacrot Etienne FRA 2692 6 2660 49 2711
30 22 Dreev Aleksey RUS 2709 6 2655 51 2720
31 5 Mamedyarov Shakhriyar AZE 2799 6 2652 47 2696
32 12 Malakhov Vladimir RUS 2766 6 2650 51 2717
33 23 Vallejo Pons Francisco ESP 2709 6 2650 46,5 2715
34 29 Kryvoruchko Yuriy UKR 2694 6 2635 49 2693
35 40 Efimenko Zahar UKR 2677 6 2628 47,5 2679
36 27 Moiseenko Alexander UKR 2699 6 2621 45,5 2680
37 39 Zhigalko Sergei BLR 2679 6 2593 46,5 2651
38 70 Dubov Daniil RUS 2624 5,5 2708 50,5 2738
39 73 Riazantsev Alexander RUS 2597 5,5 2701 55,5 2695
40 65 Salgado Lopez Ivan ESP 2630 5,5 2694 51,5 2709

(Full standings here)

The World Rapid starts today at 3pm local time which is 1pm CET, 7am New York and 4am Los Angeles. The championship will be broadcast live on the tournament’s official website with online games and commentary.


 

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Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers
Chess.com

Comments

jimknopf's picture

I really enjoyed round ten, when
- Carlsen made a big point against the leader Caruana to levae him behind
- Aronian showed Nakamura the limits of his tactical chess

Still a long way to go tomorrow, but I enjoyed my two favorite chess players leave the the VERY impressive "rest" behind today. ;-)

MagnusOCarlsen's picture

Me too

Roberto's picture

I'm LOVING this tournament! It's much more dynamic.

Armenian highlands's picture

Carlsen's games are not interesting. No groundbreaking novelties, no fire on the board, nothing. True chess fans will patiently await the return of the real king of chess, Vladimir Kramnik, who will delight us with his beautiful, scientific approach to the opening, as well as his impeccable endgame technique.

Anonymous's picture

Ridiculous. And I'm a Kramnik fan.

Thomas Richter's picture

I doubt that "Armenian highlands" is a Kramnik fan - such ridiculous comments recently appeared here, probably to make Kramnik fans look stupid.

Leo's picture

You really hit the Kool Aid, didn't you ...

luke's picture

Get the hell out of here, S3..!
freakin racist comment again!

Leo's picture

Not that I would put anything past S3, but ... where is the racist comment?

Roberto's picture

Don't be ridiculous. Carlsen's games were very nice.

Hernán Ruiz's picture

Your stupid commentaries are not interesting.

Anonymous's picture

There he is!

THERE HE IS!

The shining star, the world's best chess player, classical, rapid, blitz, MAAAAAAAAAAAAAGNUS CAAAAAAAAAAARLSEN!!!!!!!!!

jimknopf's picture

No need to freak out, we're talking of chess.
Ever heard of that game? ;-)

Anonymous's picture

Magnus now first in the Live Rapid Rating List.
Poor Thomas.

Thomas Richter's picture

"none of them (the world's best [rapid] players is out of form" - this isn't completely true: Fifth seed and defending champion Mamedyarov has only 6/10 and has already lost three games. 10th seed (rapid specialist?) Korobov has only 4.5/10. Wang Hao (5.5/10) and Eljanov (5/10) probably also aren't happy with their events.

jimknopf's picture

In such a strong field I'm not surprised that some are facing more problems than at former occasions.

But the classical top ten players present there showed a pretty solid performance so far.

Stu Pidme's picture

Thomas is right. Leading this field after 10 rounds is not much of an achievement, since not all of the 20 top guns are in absolute best form. The field last year was much stronger.

Anonymous's picture

The field last year was much weaker, if I remember right.

And calling it "not much of an achievement" to lead a field with most of the classical top ten plus most of the best worldwide rapid- and blitz-specialists is quite a funny statement, by the way.

Anonymous's picture

How can Carlsen leading be an achievement of any sort if Korobov isn't in his best form? :)

Thomas Richter's picture

Don't take "Stu Pidme" seriously. Yes, the field last year was weaker, but even then Mamedyarov wouldn't have finished on top with three losses (against [players comparable to] Jobava, Efimenko and Najer). And Carlsen's result is an entirely separate story.

Anonymous's picture

Whilst I agree that it's probably a bit of an unnecessary sweeping statement at the top of the article, I don't think you can insert the word 'Rapid' into that quote - I don't think that is the implication. I think that the statement is more in reference to people who are popularly considered to be 'the best', i.e. at the very top of the classical ratings, invited to top tournaments etc.
Just a thought.

RG13's picture

So the current leaders are the top-rated classical chess players? I guess rapid is more transitive than blitz but would be willing to be proved wrong. Too bad for Nakamura that his phenomenal bullet skills are of little value here. I suspect that Nakamura's top rapid rating is based upon an insufficient number of games and also the world champ had not made rapid a priority before.

BS's picture

Bullet skills depend as much on your mouse and computer set up as your chess. it is interesting those players who are of significantly different strength at blitz , rapid and classical . I wonder what the reasons for that are?

Anonymous's picture

magnus is being magnus again! better than the rest of the players, so this is not surprising at all. but since this is a rapid event w/ many players, he has to keep his pace up tomorrow.

PP (NL)'s picture

Nice to see Van Wely doing so well.

bhabatosh's picture

Rapid games are best way to promote chess ... it is quick , produce more decisive results and offers more action in a day than classical chess. Swiss event makes it even more interesting as it allows mix things ....Great to see Carlsen is doing great !

RG13's picture

Rapid is great but 25' + 10" is fast enough. No need for this 15' + 10" more blunderful time control.

PircAlert's picture

A top 8 or top16 knock out after 10 rounds would have been even better, and would determine a true champion.

observer's picture

Rubbish.
A knockout is much worse than a Swiss. See 'Championship Chessmetrics Analysis' by Jeff Sonas.

Anonymous's picture
RG13's picture

He's clearly looking at things all wrong!

Walter's picture

Ouch, looks like Nakamura was lost against king Loek. Now he still has some small chances...

Hernán Ruiz's picture

Yesterday one of this anonymous guys was celbrating
the 3th place of Carlsen.It seems it was too early for this.Now he keeps his big mouth shut.

Zeveraar's picture

I don't get why people are so serious about this tournament and the player's results. For the players this is fun and a great opportunity to try out some stuff - given a few exceptions.
Might we consider approaching this in the same way?

Grandma's picture

You are right, and - Yes, we might, Zeveraar. :-)

Anonymous's picture

Premature celebrations by fanboys? Brat simply being outplayed by Champ Anand in endgame! :)

Anonymous's picture

Woohoo Carlsen beaten!!!

Leo's picture

Indeed, good job, Vishy - the only one to score a full point off the new rapid World Champion :)

me's picture

yes, by himself

Anonymous's picture

With Anand back to normal it is simply no match for him to win this easily even with black against such inferior opponent!

jimknopf's picture

Yes, we all saw how Anand wasn't even able to profit from Carlsen's blunder, and "win easily" against all the "inferior opponents" to claim the rapid world championship.

Behind whom did he join scond row? Behind the "inferior oppenent"?

How could that happen to "Anand back to normal"???

Seriously, Anand played well, but Carlsen (despite giving away one game by a big blunder) just played better.

End of story. ;-)

Thomas Richter's picture

Carlsen couldn't really complain about 1.5/3 from his games against Aronian, Anand and Grischuk - 0.5/3 might have been a logical result given the course of the games, he just lost "the wrong one". Carlsen had the best result and played the slightly more successful (not necessarily "better") rapid chess - obviously Anand and Aronian also had their moments of luck. IMO overall Caruana looked like the most stable player, but he (also) came half a point short of first place.

Anonymous's picture

You're right Thomas. In fact if Carlsen had lost more games he might have ended at the bottom of the table with the untitled players.

Septimus's picture

Anand must be a tad worried now. That Dragon against Karjakin was spectacular. What a game!

Anonymous's picture

nakamura : 39 final standing

SUPERB !!!

Anonymous's picture

No, that is Cheparinov on 39. Nakamura is way ahead of 39.

Thomas Richter's picture

I guess Nakamura doesn't care about the difference between 29th and 39th place - same in terms of shared prize money (1000/16 = about 60$ if I calculated correctly).

Grandaunt's picture

Caruana played very well in this format too. I wonder if he is a good blitz player (of course he is, but relative to the top players).

Nakamura should be doing better tomorrow. It would be nice if he can battle at the top as his games are usually exciting.

observer's picture

Caruana has the better tiebreaker 1 than Carlsen. I guess that means he did better in the event than Carlsen really - I mean if you look at it Thomas style.

Anonymous's picture

Except Carlsen has the best tiebraker.

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