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HomePuzzleCandidates Day Ten: Possibly Second Place Is not So Unhealthy.

Candidates Day Ten: Possibly Second Place Is not So Unhealthy.

Credit: FIDE/Stev Bonhage

The tenth spherical of the Candidates Event in Madrid has concluded. Ian Nepomniatchi took his third straight draw, which has someway expanded his result in 1.5 factors. Normally such a lead on this occasion would imply much less pleasure due to how meaningless second place is. This yr there is a wonderful probability the second place finisher will get a spot within the World Championship match as effectively as a result of present champion Magnus Carlsen has expressed ambivalence about enjoying.

Day by day, Lichess is offering a broadcast of the video games performed in real-time. We even have a number of annotated video games by GM Ulvi Bajarani and video recaps by WGM-elect Jesse February.

Richard Rapport – Liren Ding 0 – 1

For mysterious causes Ding Liren has had bother discovering many video games in opposition to different Tremendous GMs for the final couple of years. There have been questions on what kind of type he could be in for this occasion, and he appears to have hit his stride at second. This recreation began out as a gradual maneuvering Ruy Lopez earlier than Rapport performed a questionable piece sacrifice to free his place. He shortly gained an change again, however then traded all the way down to an endgame that was in all probability already misplaced. In desperation, Rapport gave again the change to attain an opposite-colored bishops endgame which will have been drawable with a extra energetic king. As an alternative, Rapport’s king was as distant from the motion as a king can probably be whereas we nonetheless use an 8×8 board, and his place was doomed.


Credit: FIDE/Stev Bonhage

Spherical 10: Jan-Krzysztof Duda – Fabiano Caruana 1 – 0

Caruana Uncharacteristically obtained the worst of the opening and met Duda’s novelty with a few inaccurate strikes. He already had some issues round transfer 14. Caruana’s kingside pawns raced ahead to assist an assault that by no means fairly arrived, and ultimately it was his personal king that was in bother. Duda ultimately traded all the way down to an simply successful endgame and completed it off.

Caruana has 0.5 pts from his final 3 video games and his desires of enjoying for the World Championship now appear to rely totally on Magnus Carlsen’s degree of curiosity within the occasion.


Credit: FIDE/Stev Bonhage

Ian Nepomniachtchi – Teimour Radjabov ½ – ½ 

With Nepomniatchi having an enormous lead within the event and Radjabov having a little bit of a repute for fast attracts (and a decrease score, and the black items on this recreation) there was some hazard of an early finish to this one. These two gamers met in an notorious third-place match for the 2021 FTC Crypto Cup the place they blatantly performed to work across the occasion’s anti-draw supply guidelines as shortly as doable. 

Luckily, nothing like that occurred this time, though the sport was hardly performed on the razor’s edge both. Nepomniatchi was barely higher all through a Catalan recreation, however by no means any greater than that. He understandably wasn’t focused on taking any huge dangers to try to win, and efficiently achieved his draw after 37 strikes.


Credit: FIDE/Stev Bonhage

Hikaru Nakamura – Alireza Firouzja 1 – 0

Followers of thrilling double edged thrilling chess might be unhappy to see the Najdorf handled so roughly on the prime degree. The identical opening failed Maxine Vachier-Lagrave in a essential recreation in opposition to Caruana in direction of the top of the final candidates event in 2021, and in typical Najdorf vogue it was in all probability dropping earlier than Caruana was even out of his preparation.

On this recreation Alireza ultimately achieved the usual Najdorf d5 break however there was a horrible value to pay. His kingside pawns had been a large number, and the dark-squared bishop by no means fairly discovered house. The Kingside light-square assault virtually performed itself for Naka and Firouzja resigned with mate only some strikes away.


Credit: FIDE/Stev Bonhage



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