Reports | July 23, 2012 21:21

Giri and Wang Hao start with wins in Biel

Anish Giri and Wang Hao started with a win in the first round in Biel, Switzerland. The fresh Dutch Champion won against Alexander Morozevich, who took many risks trying to win. Wang Hao defeated Etienne Bacrot in a very nice King's Indian, Bayonet Attack. The game between Magnus Carlsen and Hikaru Nakamura ended in a draw.

Anish Giri beats Alexander Morozevich in round 1 | Photo Biel Chess Festival on Facebook

Event Biel Chess FestivalPGN
Dates July 23-August 2, 2012
Location Biel, Switzerland
System 6-player round robin
Players Carlsen, Nakamura, Morozevich, Wang Hao, Bacrot, Giri
Rate of play 40 moves in 100 minutes, then 20 moves in 50 minutes followed by 15 minutes for the rest of the game, with 30 seconds increment per move
Extra Three points for a win, one for a draw and zero for a loss. No draw offers before move 30.

The first round in Biel immediately had an interesting pairing: Magnus Carlsen versus Hikaru Nakamura. In a 4.Qxd4 Sicilian the Norwegian got a slight advantage, when Nakamura suddenly found an interesting way to continue: 15...e5, which left White with a strong square on d5, but the American of course created another strong square on d4! Carlsen's 19.Bg5 (losing a tempo but forcing f7-f6) and then 23.Bxd4! were the only way to keep an advantage, and it seems that he did miss a chance somewhere at the end. At his Facebook page he wrote:

Missed several good continuations today. Short on time Nakamura defended well, and in the end my advantage was gone. Draw.

PGN string

As always, the organizers are holding a press conference after each game where at least one of the players explains the game. This analysis is broadcast live on Playchess and posted on YouTube soon after:

Video produced by Pascal Simon (Chessbase)

Chinese GM Wang Hao started with a nice game against Frenchman Etienne Bacrot, who brought an interesting novelty in the Bayonet King's Indian but then erred a few moves later. White's position became easy to play, and Wang's finish was pretty.

PGN string

Video produced by Pascal Simon (Chessbase)

Anish Giri, who had to miss out on the opening ceremony because of the Dutch Championship, defeated Alexander Morozevich, who took too many risks. In a Grünfeld (Russian System) Giri had tried the rare move 7...Be6 and then it seemed that Morozevich was mainly trying to avoid his opponent's preparation by playing a few strange queen moves. Around move 30 the Russian did manage to get some advantage, when both players missed a tactic that would have yielded White a healthy pawn. The final phase of the game was a bit crazy, with Giri having the strongest nerves. He tweeted:

Some embarrassing moments after the game in the analysis room, but the point is there! :D:D Tomorrow one more black- Nakamura this time!:P

PGN string

Video produced by Pascal Simon (Chessbase)

Biel 2012 | Schedule & results

Round 1 23.07.12 14:00 CET   Round 6 28.07.12 14:00 CET
Carlsen ½-½ Nakamura   Nakamura - Carlsen
Wang Hao 1-0 Bacrot   Bacrot - Wang Hao
Morozevich 0-1 Giri   Giri - Morozevich
Round 2 24.07.12 14:00 CET   Round 7 30.07.12 14:00 CET
Nakamura - Giri   Giri - Nakamura
Bacrot - Morozevich   Morozevich - Bacrot
Carlsen - Wang Hao   Wang Hao - Carlsen
Round 3 25.07.12 14:00 CET   Round 8 31.07.12 14:00 CET
Wang Hao - Nakamura   Nakamura - Wang Hao
Morozevich - Carlsen   Carlsen - Morozevich
Giri - Bacrot   Bacrot - Giri
Round 4 26.07.12 14:00 CET   Round 9 01.08.12 14:00 CET
Morozevich - Nakamura   Bacrot - Nakamura
Giri - Wang Hao   Giri - Carlsen
Bacrot - Carlsen   Morozevich - Wang Hao
Round 5 27.07.12 14:00 CET   Round 10 01.08.12 11:00 CET
Nakamura - Bacrot   Nakamura - Morozevich
Carlsen - Giri   Wang Hao - Giri
Wang Hao - Morozevich   Carlsen - Bacrot

Exhibition blitz

On Sunday, a day before the tournament started, there was an exhibition blitz tournament that celebrated the 45 years of chess in Biel. It was a knockout with in each round two games with 5 minutes and 2 seconds increment. In case of a 1-1 score, one Armageddon game would be played with 5 minutes for White and 4 minutes for Black with draw odds. The players were Magnus Carlsen, Hikaru Nakamaura, Alexander Morozevich, Wang Hao, Etienne Bacrot, Pentala Harikrishna, Yannick Pelletier and Alexandra Kosteniuk.

The first round immediately saw some surprises: Magnus Carlsen was eliminated by Etienne Bacrot in the Armageddon, while Alexandra Kosteniuk was too strong for Wang Hao. Eventually Hikarua Nakamura won the event by beating Bacrot in the final.

Exhibition blitz games

PGN file

All players received a watch | Photo © Biel Chess Festival

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.


noyb's picture

Interesting start to Biel! Carlsen misses win and Moro tosses draw. No idea what happened to Bacrot, but I'm sure Wang is happy...

Morley's picture

Not sure if there was a win for Carlsen, but Nakamura definitely had a worse position. He defended very well. That Giri game was crazy.

ohbot's picture

There was no win missed in Carlsen's game, but Moro missed a win before he tossed the draw.

Ed Dean's picture

After Bacrot's ill-advised 20. ... Qxc4, Wang's punishment was just ruthlessly precise to the very end, keeping on the pressure and not giving an inch. Good victory to start things off for him; wonder if he can keep things going tomorrow with the black pieces against Carlsen.

Adolfo's picture

The following line is not all forcing, but those claiming the missed win I asumme they mean
35. e5! dxe5 (35... fxe5? 36. Qh6+ Kg8 37. h5 Qxb2+ 38. Kh3) 36. Qh6+ Kg8 37. h5 Qd6 (only move) (37... f5?38. d6) (37... Bd8 38.hxg6 hxg6 39. d6+/-) 38. hxg6 hxg6 39. Qxg6+ Kf8 40. Qh6+ Ke7 41. Qg7+ Kd8 42. Bf5 a5 43. b3 (43. a3 a4) 43... Bb6 44. Qxb7 Ke8 45. Bg6+ Kd8 46. Qa8+ Kd7 47. Bf5+ Ke7 48. Qg8 Bc5 49. Be6 Qd8 50. Qf7+ Kd6 51. Bf5 Ba3 52. Qb7 Qc7 53. Qa6+ Kxd5 54. Be4+ Kc5 55. Qxf6 Kb4 56. f4 a4 57. bxa4 exf4 58.Qxd4+ Qc4 59. Qd2+ Kc5 60. Qxf4 and if anyone can win this,despite the opp col bishops, that is Magnus, cause after all white is up 3 pawns.

bronkenstein's picture

Interesting piece of analysis, MC would have excellent winning chances esp having in mind few really critical moves ´placed´ in opponent´s time trouble - but on the other hand Naka´s black squares defensive concept was basically good IMO (being Sveshnikov player, I might be biased there ;) - maybe a bit too ambitious (if one can say that for defense) - but it worked well in the end.

Anonymous's picture

34. Qh6 by Moro could have been a sweet win

Anonymous's picture

33.Qh6 sorry

Latest articles