Reports | December 02, 2012 15:50

Wang Hao beats Caruana in 9th round Tashkent Grand Prix

After nine rounds Sergey Karjakin is the sole leader at the FIDE Grand Prix in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. On Sunday the Russian GM drew with Boris Gelfand while co-leader Fabiano Caruana lost to Wang Hao. Six players are now chasing Karjakin with half a point less and there's only two more rounds to go.

Wang Hao beats Caruana in round 9 | Photos by Anastasiya Karlovich & Giyanov Bakhtiyor, courtesy of FIDE

Event FIDE Grand Prix | PGN via TWIC
Dates November 22nd-December 4th, 2012
Location Tashkent, Uzbekistan
System 12-player round robin
Players Karjakin, Caruana, Morozevich, Kamsky, Wang HaoMamedyarov, Svidler, Gelfand, Ponomariov,Leko, Dominguez, Kasimdzhanov
Rate of play

120 minutes for the first 40 moves, then 60 minutes for the next 20 moves and then 15 minutes and an increment of 30 seconds per move from move 61 onwards

Extra The players are not allowed to offer draws directly to their opponents but only through the arbiter


With all the attention going to London, we'd almost forget that the 2nd GP tournament is still under way in Tashkent. After the second rest day, play resumed with again five out of six games ending in draws. The winner of the day was Wang Hao, but perhaps more importantly, the loser was Fabiano Caruana. The Italian dropped to (shared) second place, and Sergey Karjakin is now the clear leader. He'll have to defend his lead with Black against Mamedyarov on Monday and then Ponomariov with White on Tuesday.

Let's start with Wang Hao's win. It seems that it was mostly the result of one error by Caruana on move 27, when White got a dominating position by force.

PGN string

Fabiano Caruana dropped to second place...

...where Wang Hao is now as well

The most fascinating draw of the day was the following. In the previous round Mamedyarov offered an exchange and in this game a full piece. He's recently married and keeps on putting photos of his wedding on Facebook – nothing braver than a man in love? ;-)

PGN string

A fearless (and newly-wed) Mamedyarov in Tashkent

The following game was not bad either. Answering the question of how to deal with World Championship preparation, Karjakin chose 3.Nc3 and 4.Bc4 against Gelfand (intended) Sveshnikov. At move 22 Gelfand pointed out the compensation for his doubled pawns over the f-file with a textbook positional exchange sac.

PGN string

Karjakin-Gelfand, an interesting draw 

Kamsky tends to play the Alekhine every now and then, and he did it again on Sunday. With healthy moves Ponomariov got a slight edge consisting of the bishop pair and more space, but apparently the Ukrainian couldn't see what to do with it.

PGN string

Kamsky: a solid draw with the Alekhine

Kasimdzhanov-Morozevich was the typical "correct GM draw". An early queen exchange, then all the minor pieces went off, then the rooks as well and then the accurate 32...Ke4! sealed the draw.

PGN string

Leko and Svidler started repeating moves at move 30, in a position that seems to still hold some options for both sides. It might be one of those case where anyone who avoids the draw will get into trouble.

PGN string

FIDE Grand Prix Tashkent 2012 | Schedule & results

Round 1 11:00 CET 22.11.12   Round 2 11:00 CET 23.11.12
Morozevich 1-0 Kamsky   Kamsky ½-½ Karjakin
Caruana ½-½ Svidler   Wang Hao ½-½ Dominguez
Gelfand ½-½ Leko   Kasimdzhanov ½-½ Ponomariov
Mamedyarov ½-½ Kasimdzhanov   Leko ½-½ Mamedyarov
Ponomariov ½-½ Wang Hao   Svidler ½-½ Gelfand
Dominguez 0-1 Karjakin   Morozevich 1-0 Caruana
Round 3 11:00 CET 24.11.12   Round 4 11:00 CET 25.11.12
Caruana 1-0 Kamsky   Kamsky 0-1 Wang Hao
Gelfand ½-½ Morozevich   Kasimdzhanov ½-½ Karjakin
Mamedyarov 1-0 Svidler   Leko ½-½ Dominguez
Ponomariov ½-½ Leko   Svidler 1-0 Ponomariov
Dominguez  ½-½ Kasimdzhanov   Morozevich ½-½ Mamedyarov
Karjakin ½-½ Wang Hao   Caruana 1-0 Gelfand
Round 5 11:00 CET 27.11.12   Round 6 11:00 CET 28.11.12
Gelfand 0-1 Kamsky   Kamsky ½-½ Kasimdzhanov
Mamedyarov ½-½ Caruana   Leko ½-½ Wang Hao
Ponomariov 1-0 Morozevich   Svidler ½-½ Karjakin
Dominguez ½-½ Svidler   Morozevich 1-0 Dominguez
Karjakin ½-½ Leko   Caruana ½-½ Ponomariov
Wang Hao 0-1 Kasimdzhanov   Gelfand ½-½ Mamedyarov
Round 7 11:00 CET 29.11.12   Round 8 11:00 CET 30.11.12
Mamedyarov ½-½ Kamsky   Kamsky 0-1 Leko
Ponomariov ½-½ Gelfand   Svidler ½-½ Kasimdzhanov
Dominguez 0-1 Caruana   Morozevich ½-½ Wang Hao
Karjakin 1-0 Morozevich   Caruana ½-½ Karjakin
Wang Hao ½-½ Svidler   Gelfand ½-½ Dominguez
Kasimdzhanov ½-½ Leko   Mamedyarov ½-½ Ponomariov
Round 9 11:00 CET 02.12.12   Round 10 11:00 CET 03.12.12
Ponomariov ½-½ Kamsky   Kamsky - Svidler
Dominguez ½-½ Mamedyarov   Morozevich - Leko
Karjakin ½-½ Gelfand   Caruana - Kasimdzhanov
Wang Hao 1-0 Caruana   Gelfand - Wang Hao
Kasimdzhanov ½-½ Morozevich   Mamedyarov - Karjakin
Leko ½-½ Svidler   Ponomariov - Dominguez
Round 11 08:00 CET 04.12.12        
Dominguez - Kamsky        
Karjakin - Ponomariov        
Wang Hao - Mamedyarov        
Kasimdzhanov - Gelfand        
Leko - Caruana        
Svidler - Morozevich        

FIDE Grand Prix Tashkent 2012 | Round 9 standings



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.


Anonymous's picture

Great Leko-Svidler: the rule "a third position repetition is a loss for the player who was on the move" would solve this problem.

Anonymous's picture

what problem?

choufleur's picture

Leko is the king of draws

Anonymous's picture

Leko is so far undefeated with +2 in the strongest series of tournaments that currently exists.

Thomas's picture

Leko and Svidler may have simply both thought that the position is equal - not dead equal but still no chance for either side to make progress. With Sofia rules, they went for a plausible move repetition when it was available; the alternative would have been to make many more moves just for the sake of making moves. Without Sofia rules, one player might have tried "another option" - knowing that he can offer a draw five, ten or twenty moves later to end the game by mutual agreement.

RG13's picture

@Thomas, but isn't it true that the "more moves just for the sake of making moves" that we make the players make, the more chance one of them will get careless (like a transposition of proper move order) and the other player can take advantage of it. That forces them to actually be careful, both defensively and with a keen eye to taking advantage of a lapse.

Thomas's picture

Of course, in almost any position it's still possible to make a mistake, or to benefit from the opponent's mistake. Maybe both players were afraid of making a mistake but had little hope that the other one would go wrong?

Anyway, I found back the Gashimov interview I had in mind:
"It seems to me that when there’s a ban on draws it puts pressure on you, and you start to play more limited chess. More solidly, perhaps… And grandmasters who find a three-fold repetition usually make it immediately at the first opportunity – as there’s a risk that you might have to play some stupid position for seven hours, and in any case the game will end in a draw. But here you could simply play calmly, and if you ended up with an equal or nearly drawn position, then you could simply offer a draw. And it turns out that everyone played interesting chess, with few draw offers right up until the end of the tournament." (referring to Reggio Emilia 2010/2011)

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