Reports | September 11, 2011 14:04

World Cup R5 tie-breaks: Grischuk & Ivanchuk through

World Cup R5 tie-breaks: Grischuk & Ivanchuk through

(FULL REPORT) Alexander Grischuk and Vassily Ivanchuk will face each other in the semi-finals of the World Cup after winning their round 5 tie-break matches. Grischuk won his first game against David Navara with Black and then drew the second. Ivanchuk managed to draw an ending an exchange down in the first game against Teimour Radjabov, and then the Ukrainian won the second. The other semi-final is Peter Svidler versus Ruslan Ponomariov, who already qualified yesterday. All four players will stay till the end of the tournament, because the losers of the semi-finals will play a match for 3rd and 4th place - the first three players will qualify for the next Candidates tournament.

General info

The 2011 FIDE World Cup is a 128-player knock-out taking place August 27-September 20 in Khanty-Mansiysk, Siberia. The tournament delivers three participants for the next Candidates tournament/matches, as part of the new World Championship cycle. Except for the final, all rounds have 2-game matches at the FIDE time control: 90 minutes for 40 moves followed by 30 minutes to finish the game, with a 30-second increment from the first move. In case of a 1-1 tie, on the third day of the round there's a tie-break with rapid games and if necessary blitz games and an Armageddon. More info here. Tournament bracket

Tiebreak round 5

On the shortest day so far in Khanty-Mansiysk, Alexander Grischuk and Vassily Ivanchuk defeated David Navara and Teimour Radjabov respectively. Both matches only lasted two rapid games, and so after a mere two hours everything was already over. It must have been a welcome extra few hours of rest for Grischuk and Ivanchuk, as the only rest day in this tournament is scheduled for next Thursday - the day before the finals start.

Yes, finals, plural. We remind you that the losers of the semi-finals will play a match for 3rd and 4th place at the same time when the final is being played. The reason is that the first three players will qualify for the next Candidates tournament. Therefore all four players left could finally book their return ticket for September 21st.

David Navara's elimination was the result of a short, weak phase in the first game.



In the next game Grischuk didn't play well and had to defend an ending a pawn down. This task wasn't difficult, though.



For the official website Navara was interviewed by Tamila Musaeva. Here's one quote:

Of course as every young man I like modern music. But the works of such great composers like Bah, Mozart, Vivaldi helps me to find the harmony with my inner world and sometimes to get ready to the game. I can say that these are the melodies of my soul.

Grischuk at the press conference:

In the second rapid game I was playing as bad as I was doing it during my second classical one. White did a lot in order to lose. But in this case the safety factor in my position was much higher; we had an endgame which was unpleasant for me without a pawn. But he was close to make a draw and it was very easy for me to make it.

After he had sacrificed an exchange in the middlegame, Vassily Ivanchuk was under some pressure in his first game against Teimour Radjabov. However, it seems that the game always remained within the drawing margin:



In the second game Ivanchuk nicely outplayed Radjabov from an equal ending.



And so the semi-finals will be a mini-match between Russia and Ukraine: Svidler vs Ponomariov and Grischuk vs Ivanchuk. As Thomas pointed out in the comments, these are almost the same semi-finalists as in the FIDE knock-out World Championship 2001-2002. In December 2001, Ruslan Ponomariov beat Peter Svidler to reach the final where he met Vassily Ivanchuk, who eliminated Vishy Anand. As we all know, Ponomariov surprisingly defeated Vassily Ivanchuk in the final.

Tie-break games round 5


FIDE World Cup 2011 | Round 5 results
Name G1 G2 R1 R2 r3 r4 B1 B2 SD Tot
Round 5 Match 01
Svidler, Peter (RUS) ½ 1               1.5
Polgar, Judit (HUN) ½ 0               0.5
Round 5 Match 02
Ivanchuk, Vassily (UKR) 1 0 ½ 1           2.5
Radjabov, Teimour (AZE) 0 1 ½ 0           1.5
Round 5 Match 03
Grischuk, Alexander (RUS) ½ ½ 1 ½           2.5
Navara, David (CZE) ½ ½ 0 ½           1.5
Round 5 Match 04
Ponomariov, Ruslan (UKR) ½ 1               1.5
Gashimov, Vugar (AZE) ½ 0               0.5

Photos © FIDE | Official website


Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers

Founder and editor-in-chief of, Peter is responsible for most of the chess news and tournament reports. Often visiting top events, he also provides photos and videos for the site. He's a 1.e4 player himself, likes Thai food and the Stones.


AdityaK's picture

Ukraine v/s Russia!! And nothing surprising about that. The competition has gone splendidly, despite people having their qualms about the 2 game knock out. At least for the spectators, it has been a real treat. I only considered the Armageddon as a lottery, and thankfully, only 2 matches went there.

hansie's picture

With Ukraine taking care of Azerbaijan, and Russia, the Eastern Europe, in an all-European stage!

ebutaljib's picture

And then there were only four. Thats one too many for the Candidates - who isgoing to be the odd man out?

Thomas's picture

I am afraid it might be Svidler, who is the (slight) underdog in his remaining matches. Ivanchuk usually has one offday in knockout events, but it already happened against Sutovsky and he would need two more to be out. Three of the remaining players already reached the semifinal in 2002 - plus Anand replacing Grischuk (who was semifinalist in 2000). Svidler, Anand and Ivanchuk were already established players back then, while Grischuk and Pono were rising stars. This time the young generation either didn't participate (Carlsen, Giri) or was eliminated at an earlier stage (Karjakin, Vachier-Lagrave, Nepomniachtchi).

Sanne's picture

excellent and informative comment as usual.

stevefraser's picture

Thomas, much thanks for the summary and history of the final four.

Chessfan's picture

Thomas, you have incredible amount of chess knowledge! I always read your comments here on chessvibes and chessninja as well.

Thomas's picture

Thanks, as a matter of fact this time I (and maybe Dennis Monokroussos who later wrote the same on his blog) got the info from the live commentary. Though I had "independently" pointed out a few days and rounds ago that Ivanchuk and Ponomariov might end up playing a rematch - for first or maybe third place.

Daniel's picture

Go Chucky!

Bartleby's picture

Thumb up. Where is the thumb up?

Peter Visser's picture

Yes, where's the thumb up and down?

choufleur's picture

gone, and it is fine with me

Pomonado's picture

I couldn't follow the tie-breaks. So relieved that Chucky qualified.

steven's picture

I think in both matches the Ukrainians are slightly the favourites.

Chess Fan's picture

Are you sure? Grischuk is one of the greatest talents ever and Svidler, when he plays like this is truly one of the top 3 or 5 in the world. I will count anyone of these 4 as favorites to win.

ShockeR_40's picture

So my predictions were right ;)

Go go Chucky !!!

ShockeR_40's picture

More predictions -


steven's picture

Svidler has a negative score against ponomariov and grischuk has a negative score against ivanchuk.
Plus Ivanchuk and Ponomariov are imo mentally tougher and more succesfull in knock-out tournaments (especially Ponomariov).

Thomas's picture

I wouldn't put too much into head-to-head scores unless they're very lopsided (which here isn't the case). For example, Kramnik had and still has a plus score against Svidler - but it didn't help him in their most recent game at the Russian Championship. Obviously, Ponomariov is always successful in KO events, but Ivanchuk? More often than not, he was eliminated at an early stage by respectable but second-class players such as Seirawan (past his prime), Nisipeanu and Wesley So. Well, as I wrote above he already had his weak moment against Sutovsky (same category) and survived in the end - and he son't underestimate Grischuk. Altogether, I also predict an Ivanchuk-Pono final (rematch 9 years after Chucky's sole successful knockout event), but "anything can happen".

Smarac's picture

Go Chucky! :)

Sarunas's picture

Excellent masterpiece by Chucky exploiting b7, b6 dead meat! How could Rajabov step on this trail of tears being eye-witness of Naka's fate in Kings Tournament, Roumania just few months ago? Chucky just had a notorious pattern in rapids, since his memory never fails him...

AljechinsCat's picture

I like ths event and the format very much now, since meanwhile the matches look to be equally decided on the board and also by the "personal factor" - e.g. Navara played a little too nervous, Radja chosed the wrong "personal" strategy in my opinion (a pure technical position - against Chucky ??). Like in good old times!
No favourite to me. Sacha will play an aggressive 1.e4 against Chucky (Petroff or Caro). I also expect something special from Peter Shvidler.

TheSeaLettuce's picture

Grischuk is a tough cookie to beat. I reckon he will beat Svidler in the final and Ivanchuk will get the better of Ponomariov in the play-off. Grischuk, Svidler and Ivanchuk in the Candidates.

hansie's picture


Septimus's picture

Grischuk has proved to be very resilient but I believe that Ponomariov will turn the tables on Ivanchuk. Chucky tends to have a catastrophic off day when he is playing well.

stevefraser's picture

Great work week in and week out, much thanks, Peter Doggers, from chess fans around the world.

thierry's picture

Chucky rocks ! Go Chucky !

galil.sho's picture

Hi,Can anyone please explain how will be decided the 3 player that qualify for the next cycle ?

ChessGirl's picture

Basically, after the semifinal the two winners of the matches will play for first and second place, and the two losers will play for third and fourth. So, only the player who loses both the semifinal and the final is out of the candidates matches.

Chessfan's picture

Hoping for either win for Peter or Chucky. I don't like Grischuk, so will be rooting for anyone against him:)

AdityaK's picture

In my opinion, it would be nice to have a round robin at this stage. Since there is already a third place playoff, we would have only 2 matches more than the current format. That would have made almost all the matches interesting. Now, I do not think anybody would be following the 1st-2nd place match as the 3rd-4th place match is held at the same time and has bigger stakes.

Sarunas's picture

If Grischuk qualifies we'll have another Candidates 97% draw dissapointment and subsequent crazy debates on how to unroot draws in chess or even more sadly to ultimately substitute chess with his beloved rapid.

nenad levar's picture

grischuk je sramota za sah.ceka greske sramota

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