Tag Archives: Magnus Carlsen

Magnus Carlsen is crowned World Champion!

Carlsen the King

With a draw today, Magnus Carlen wins the 12-game World Championship Match in 10 games, 6.5:3.5 (+3 -0 =7), taking the title Viswanathan Anand has held since 2007.

Needing only a draw in Game 10 to become World Champion, Carlsen nevertheless declines a repetition of moves on move 22 and puts up a full fight for the win before shaking hands on move 65 (when the board is bare except for kings!). Here’s the final game:

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Check results, photos, videos, and live coverage at http://chennai2013.fide.com/
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Anand’s Last Chance?

World Championship Match – Anand down 5:3

Viswanathan Anand Magnus Carlsen Game 7

After back-to-back wins by Magnus Carlsen in the fifth and sixth games, Viswanathan Anand has his back against the wall and must win two of the remaining games to take the match to a tie-break playoff.

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Game 8 – Tuesday, November 19

Fans were disappointed to see Anand not trying to win Game 8 on Tuesday. If there are three more draws, Carlson will clinch.

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Game 8 boring draw

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Game 9 – Thursday, November 21

Realistically, Game 9 is Anand’s last chance in the match. He has white, and if he pulls off a win, he’ll have three more chances to win a second game and tie the match, including another chance with white.

If not, and the game ends in another draw, Anand will face the daunting task of having to beat the world’s top-rated player twice in three games, including at least one win with black – more than even the most ardent Vishy supporters can plausibly expect from him. If ever there was a time for Anand to pull out a secret weapon, this is it!

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Official site

Check results, photos, videos, and live coverage at http://chennai2013.fide.com/
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World Championship – Anand vs Carlsen

After 3 draws, the World Chess Championship Match is tied 1.5:1.5

World Champion Viswanathan Anand is defending his title on home turf in Chennai, India. Formerly called Madras, Chennai is the state capital of Tamil Nadu and one of the most important cultural and industrial centres in south India.

“Vishy” Anand, now 43, took the world title in the Championship Tournament of 2007 – just after a rocky period when there had been two rival World Champion titles. Since becoming undisputed World Champion, Anand has successfully defended his title three times: against Kramnik (in 2008), Topolov (2010), and Gelfand (2012).

The Norwegian challenger, Magnus Carlsen, is by most accounts the favourite to win the 12-game match: at 22, he’s much younger than Anand – and he is, after all, the all-time highest-rated player in the world (Elo 2870). Indeed, Carlsen’s rating difference above the second highest-rated player, Aronian (2801), is bigger than Aronian’s rating difference over any of the next 15 players! Anand (2775) is currently ranked 8th.

In one of the most anticipated chess matches in recent memory, fans are looking to see a heavily prepared Champion use his preparation to get an advantage in the opening, while the young challenger fights to steal the game in the middlegame and ending.

Games will be broadcast live, starting at a brutal 4:30 AM Eastern Standard Time. Rounds 1 and 2 are Saturday and Sunday, November 9 and 10.

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Opening Ceremony – Thursday, November 7

anand carlsen handshake

Viswanathan Anand and Magnus Carlen shake hands in Chennai.

At the opening ceremony in Nehru Indoor Stadium, Tamil Nadu’s Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa gives a brief 1500-year history of chess, proudly claiming India as the “homeland of this amazing game,” Chennai as a “sports hub,” and Viswanathan Anand as “the greatest sportsman India has ever produced.” (Sachin Tendulkar, watch out!)


She proudly lists the crores (tens of millions) of rupees she has sanctioned for investment in sports infrastructure during her three tenures as Chief Minister – including chess clubs and a chess-in-schools programme – before declaring the World Championship Match open.

In the draw of lots, Anand’s photo is drawn (to cheers from the crowd) and a black king is chosen, meaning Carlsen will play white in the first game.


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Round One – Saturday, November 9

The first game ends in a quick draw. Carlsen chooses 1.Nf3 (a flexible move that is not the most testing), goes for a Catalan-type setup, and offers a repetition of moves on move 13, after just an hour and a half of play. Anand makes strong, solid moves in a Grünfeld-like setup, and must be pleased with neutralizing Carlsen so quickly. Not a bad result for all concerned, notes live commentator, Susan Polgar:

To make some sense of the game, here’s the live broadcast from ChessBomb with commentary by Canadian IM Aman Hambleton from Ottawa:

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(Aman is one of Canada’s most promising young players. Currently, he and fellow Canadian, GM Eric Hansen, are based in Valencia, Spain. Below, from the 2012 UNAM Open where he placed 3rd and earned a GM norm, Aman poses atop an Aztec pyramid with another strong Canadian player, WNM Liza Orlova.)

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Round Two – Sunday, November 10

Another draw. After Anand’s 1.e4, Magnus plays the mildly surprising …c6. The Caro Kann has a reputation as a solid defence – but of course some lines are still sharp! The game follows a relatively unexplored offshoot of the main line after Black plays 7…e6, and ends with White avoiding some wild possibilities and forcing another early draw, again by repetition.

Here’s Aman Hambleton again with the ChessBomb live-broadcast commentary.

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Round Three – Tuesday, November 12

Another draw, but fans get to see a full fight. After playing 1.Nf3 again, it is Carlsen who first deviates from the line in Game One. In the middle, the game almost threatens to tip Anand’s way, but Carlsen musters a strong defence.

Here’s Aman Hambleton’s blow by blow:

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Official site

Check results, photos, videos, and live coverage at http://chennai2013.fide.com/
FWCM 2013 - LOGO

Carlsen will play in the 2013 Candidates

carlsen 2013

Magnus Carlsen, the world’s highest-rated player, may now become World Champion. Carlsen will take part in the 2013 Candidates tournament – to be held in London, UK, March 15 to April 1.

This double-Round-Robin tournament will determine the official challenger for the world title. The challenger will then play a championship match against current World Champion Viswanathan Anand.

The article from the Guardian “Chess prodigy Magnus Carlsen enters endgame for world title” provides quite a good preview.

The 2013 candidates are:
1. Magnus Carlsen (NOR)
2. Vladimir Kramnik (RUS)
3. Levon Aronian (ARM)
4. Teimour Radjabov (AZE)
5. Alexander Grischuk (RUS)
6. Vasily Ivanchuk (UKR)
7. Peter Svidler (RUS)
8. Boris Gelfand (ISR)

Check the official site of the London 2013 Candidates Tournament for live games and the latest results.

2011 Tal Memorial in Moscow

2011 Tal Memorial – November 16 to 25

The 2011 Tal Memorial in Moscow
Nakamura ½-½ Gelfand, Round 1 © russiachess.org

The Tal Memorial took place from November 16 to 25 in Moscow. It was an incredibly strong event, with an average Elo of 2776, and some exciting match-ups. In the end, Levon Aronian and Magnus Carlsen tied for first.

Coverage Links:

Last Round (November 25)

Nepomniachtchi-Aronian © russiachess.org

In the final round, soon-to-be World Championship Challenger Boris Gelfand and current World Champion Viswanathan Anand drew. Svidler beat Kramnik to climb back to .500, and Karjakin and Ivanchuk drew.

Magnus Carlsen, with a win against Hikaru Nakamura from the black side of a Queen’s Indian, climbed to 5.5/9 and first place (and dumped Naka in last). So it all came down to the final game, Ian Nepomniachtchi-Levon Aronian. Ian had two pawns for the exchange in an ending, and possible winning chances, but Levon drew to stay (tied with Magnus) in first.

As well as tying for first in the 2011 Tal Memorial, Carlsen and Aronian are first and second in the live FIDE rankings.

Games in .pgn

Round Eight (November 24)

Aronian 1-0 Svidler © russiachess.org

In the eighth round, Levon Aronian broke out of the leader pack with a win against Peter Svidler. Aronian is now alone in first place at the 2011 Tal Memorial, with one round left to play.

Games in .pgn

Round Seven (November 23)

Nakamura 0-1 Ivanchuk © russiachess.org

In the fifth and sixth rounds all games were drawn, but in the seventh Nakamura went down to Ivanchuk, who now joins Carlsen, Aronian, Karjakin, and Nepomniachtchi in a five-way tie for first with 4/6. After his game Naka tweeted, “Quite simply, I have to play better chess.” (Follow @GMHikaru.)

Games in .pgn

Round Four (November 19)

Nepomniachtchi ½-½ Nakamura © russiachess.org

In the fourth round, all five games were drawn. Karjakin, Aronian, Carlsen, and Nepomniachtchi remain in a four-way tie for the lead – with 2½/4. Hikaru Nakamura may have missed a chance or two to win in his game against Ian Nepomniachtchi.

Games in .pgn

Round Three (November 18)

Gelfand 0-1 Karjakin © russiachess.org

In the third round, full points were scored by Sergey Karjakin (against Gelfand) and Aronian (against Ivanchuk) to join Carlsen and Nepomniachtchi in a four-way tie for the lead – with 2/3. Naka went down to Peter Svidler and is currently trailing (=8th) with 1/3. And Gelfand is in last with only ½/3 after back-to-back losses.

Games in .pgn

Round Two (November 17)

Carlsen 1-0 Gelfand (Anand looking on) © russiachess.org

In the second round, Norwegian Magnus Carlsen (1st in the world at 2826) defeated Israeli Boris Gelfand (challenger for the world title) in a wild game. Carlsen is now tied for first place with Ivanchuk and Nepomniachtchi – all three have 1½/2.

Games in .pgn

Round One (November 16)

Kramnik 0-1 Nepomniachtchi © russiachess.org

In the first round, 21-year-old Ian Nepomniachtchi (mere 20th in the world and the lowest-rated GM in the tounament at 2730) scored an upset win (with black!) against Vladimir Kramnik (4th in the world at 2800). (And Vassily Ivanchuk beat Peter Svidler)

Games in .pgn

Шестой Мемориал Михаила Таля – Москва 2011

The 6th Tal Memorial is being held in the palatial Pashkov House, which sits atop Vagankovo hill in Moscow, Russia.

The tournament honours Mikhail Tal, a Latvian player known for his tactical play and his death stare. Tal is a Soviet legend, and he became the 8th World Chess Champion when he defeated Mikhail Botvinnik in 1960. This past November 9 would have been his 75th birthday.

The Magician from Riga
Pashkov House