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Carlsen wins the GRENKE Chess Classic 2019

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Carlsen wins the GRENKE Chess Classic 2019

Magnus Carlsen won the GRENKE Chess Classic in his trademark style with a staggering 7½/9. Carlsen kept pushing for a win against Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (MVL) even when he was assured of the title after Caruana drew against Aronian.

Fabiano Caruana took second place with 6/9. Arkadij Naiditsch and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave shared third place with a score of 5/9.

Magnus Carlsen poses with the winning trophy. Standing from left Fabiano Caruana, Magnus Carlsen, Akadij Naiditsch & Antje Leminsky. Photo credit Georgios Souleidis.
Magnus Carlsen poses with the winning trophy. Standing from left Fabiano Caruana, Magnus Carlsen, Akadij Naiditsch & Antje Leminsky. Photo credit Georgios Souleidis

Magnus Carlsen v Maxime Vachier-Lagrave

The day had begun well for Carlsen in his own game against MVL who had sacrificed a pawn out of the blue.

As it turned out, MVL had little to show for the pawn. Carlsen soon managed to liquidate into a Queen and Pawn endgame, keeping his extra pawn intact. MVL halfheartedly tried to make something happen with his ‘f’ pawn at this stage but only ended up worsening his already hopeless position.

World Champion Magnus Carlsen in action. Photo credit Georgios Souleidis.
World Champion Magnus Carlsen in action. Photo credit Georgios Souleidis.

Fabiano Caruana v Levon Aronian

Caruana did not attempt to challenge Carlsen for the title in the final round.  For a large part of the game, the players followed one of Aronian’s earlier games against Radjabov.  They soon agreed to a draw after reaching the first time control.

Viswanathan Anand v Peter Svidler

Viswanathan Anand’s game against Peter Svidler was not much different.  A Closed Ruy Lopez had led to a sharp but known position.  Anand sacrificed a piece on the 22nd move to try and exploit the deadly pin he had established on Black’s a7 Knight.  Svidler, returned his extra piece in time and had no problems holding to a draw.

Vincent Keymer v Francisco Vallejo Pons

Vincent Keymer who is the youngest participant in the event came close to his second win of the tournament in his game against Francisco Vallejo Pons. In a Modern Benoni, Keymer had reached a commanding position out of the opening.

However, the 14-year-old underestimated the attacking potential in his opponent’s position and allowed ‘Paco’ serious initiative. Keymer managed to exchange Queens and limp on, but the sequence had left him lagging in material. Vallejo did not have any problems converting the game after this.

Young talent from Germany Vincent Keymer who is only 14 years old. Photo credit Georgios Souleidis.
Young talent from Germany Vincent Keymer who is only 14 years old. Photo credit Georgios Souleidis.

Arkadij Naiditsch v Georg Meier

Arkadij Naiditsch and Georg Meier played the longest game of the day. The two played an English Opening in which Naiditsch had an advantage early in the game. Planting his knights on b5 and e6, Arkadij won the exchange on the 22nd move, but the complications only grew as the game progressed. After a four hour battle, it was Naiditsch who had managed to come out on top and win the game on the 40th move.

With his win, Naiditsch was able to join Maxime Vachier-Lagrave in third place.

Other details

The sponsor of the event GRENKE AG who are a finance house that provide leasing, banking and factoring services.

Magnus Carlsen was the winner of the 2015 edition as well.

The final standing is shown below.

Final standing.
Final standing.

Links

Grenke Classic website.

Round 7 report on Grenke Classic.

Round 8 report on Grenke Classic.

GRENKE official website.