FM Zaur Tekeyev
Pawn Structures. Ten? Can there be so many of them? Really?
Yes, my man. They can and they ARE. In fact, each of them is pretty important, and you will come by them every now and then.
If you are not ready, you might just fall into a nasty trap and end up losing the game. You don’t want that, do you?
Read this article from start to finish then.
The final standings of the Fide Candidates
1. Ian Nepomniachtchi – 8½ 2. Maxime Vachier-Lagrave – 8 3. Anish Giri – 7½ 4. Fabiano Caruana – 7½ 5. Ding Liren – 7 6. Alexander Grischuk – 7 7. Kirill Alekseenko – 5½ 8. Wang Hao – 5
The last round might have been not so important after the winner was decided but still has produced some nice games.
Kalashnikov Sicilian variation is not something you would usually hear a lot about, but it is an interesting line and quite a great practical choice for Black. It was used by La Bourdonnais against McDonnell back in 1834 but was not really popular until recent years. The reason is that similar to the Sveshnikov, it allows White’s knight to jump to the central outpost on d5, which used to be considered bad to allow. But modern chess is more concrete and people realized that this drawback can be compensated by dynamic factors with the interest.
Ian Nepomniachtchi is the winner of the FIDE Candidates Tournament with a round to spare and a new Challenger for the world championship against Magnus Carlsen.
Ian Nepomniachtchi vs Maxime Vachier-Lagrave ended in a draw. The Frenchman has chosen an interesting double fianchetto system where he avoided moving his central pawns. This has allowed white to take control in the center and to finish his development without a problem.
This round proved to be the most entertaining from the start of the tournament.
All four games had a winner and no draws.
The game which fans were waiting for was between Fabiano Caruana and Anish Giri.
The American was a bit surprised by the move order which Giri has played. Now it was not possible to switch into Svestnikov with Nd5, so he decided to go a3 and then he made a new move Qd3.
The central game of the day was between the leader Ian Nepomniachtchi and Fabiano Caruana.
The Russian had a point advantage and white pieces. He decides to play Scotch. The game went into a well-known variation where the game is quite simple. Black was trying to make it a bit sharper but with simple moves, the white started to exchange piece after piece.
The Russian Ian Nepomniachtchi defeated his compatriot Kiril Alekseenko and increased his lead by a full point.
Nepomniachtchi’s win, with which he became the world number-three player in the live ratings, was surprisingly smooth and quick. He managed to surprise his opponent in the opening when he went for English, but when black was trying to develop his kingside he suddenly has played d4 and switched to a very good Catalan.
Anish Giri managed to win against Wang Hao in round nine. He is now only half a point behind the leader. The remaining games have finished drawing, no not without a big fight.
“It was very important for me to win this game to realistically stay in the race, otherwise it would have been really hard,” said Giri.
Najdorf Sicilian is one of the most played opening variations and is popular at all levels.
The favorite of Fischer and Kasparov, it usually leads to exciting dynamic positions and suits active players’ styles.
The second part of the FIDE Candidates Tournament has started in Yekaterinburg. The strongest of the eight participants will earn the right to challenge the current World Champion Magnus Carlsen.
The technical opening of the Candidates Tournament took place before the start of the 8th round at the Hyatt Regency hotel. The anthems of Russia and FIDE were played during the ceremony and the tournament was officially resumed by FIDE President.