CANDIDATES' TOURNAMENT ROUND 10: C OR A?

"Team C beat Team A" is how commentator Sergey Shipov summed up the results of round 10. We, however, recall what Mikhail Tal said about the 1961 Bled tournament: "The winner will be the one who beats Trifunovic". There was a Yugoslav GM of that name, who was famous for his solidity. And. lo and behold, Mikhail Nekhemievich could not beat Trifunovic, but Fischer did, and even included the game in his best game collection, but despite this, he only took second place - behind Tal!. But, who will be the first to beat (or lose to?) Anish Giri? But all these thoughts are only a way of deflecting the reader. The truth is, the grandmaster has done his duty in the tournament and fought with all his strength, but simply cannot break his run of draws. The only time he came close was his missed chance against Caruana (how did he not win that?). Today there was no desire to disturb the balance on the part of one of the leaders: 

Karjakin - Giri

It is understandable that Sergey, in such a good situation, did not want to take any risks. Anish, after confidently solving the opening problems posed by the Muscovite, also saw no reason to tempt fate. The Draw ( ½ : ½ ) was in a sense justified.

Meanwhile, Fabi has emerged abruptly from the shadows of the tournament. Such has been the nature of the event that this has required only three rounds. It is interesting to see even such a classy and experienced player as Anand is capable of risky decisions towards the end of the event. Maybe he has decided he really does not want to play a third match against Magnus? 

Caruana - Anand

«12.Qс2 A novelty for normal chess, but known in correspondence - it was played back in 1995.  It is amazing that Anand reached this - he has played this line before and knows it is very dangerous" (Vlad Tkacheiv). Is the Tiger's will weakening with age? Anyway, Fabi started exploiting the ex-champion's mistakes to the maximum: 12…h6 13.Bf4 Ne4 14.Rad1 Bf5 15.Ne5 Nd6 16.e4 Bh7 17.Qe2 Ne7 18.Bxh6

It is hard to remain calm and keep one's head after such a blow, Vishy did not lsoe at once, but definitely never recovered.  18…gxh6 19.Qh5 Nef5 20.exf5 Qg5 21.Qxg5 hxg5 22.f6 Ne4 23.Rfe1

23…Nxc3 – The decisive mistake, if you believe Stockfish. After 24.Rc1 it became clear that the knight has no decent retreat. 24…Nb5 25.Bxb7 and soon it was all over (1:0).

Peter Svidler is well-known for his love of English culture, so his choice of opening hardly came as a surprise. It was generally an "English Day", with three of the four games starting with this opening. The Russian-American battle did not see the status quo disturbed by either player. 

Svidler - Nakamura

Not fancying hara-kiri, the Russian forced a draw: 25.Qxb6 Rh4 26.gxh4 and 26…Qg4 with perpetual». Draw ( ½ : ½ ).

Aronian and Topalov burned with a ferocious desire to beat each other. The Bulgarian was trying to avoid finishing without a single win and in last place, whilst Levon wanted to make up for the previous round's defeat. The Armenian maestro appeared to be close to success at one point: 

Aronian - Topalov

The "silicon beast" suggests  25.Qd2-c3, Levon chose the more natural 25.Re7 and soon lost his advantage, some initiative and even the moral edge. Chess-wise, Black even stood a fraction better but a darw could not be avoided. The players shook hands in friendly fashion at move 58. Draw ( ½ : ½ ).

So, C and K lead with four rounds to go half a point ahead of the two A's. 

  

 

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Material: Sergey Kim