Aeroflot 2012 – Korobov leads, Caruana recovers

2/13/2012 – Anton Korobov is in the lead, with 5.0/6 points. The Ukrainian GM stopped Fabiano Caruana in round four, but the young US/Italian star has since fought his way back into equal second place and will now be eying the top spot. Fabiano's performance is 2831 and in the current rating period he has already gained 33 points to reach seventh place in the world. Report after round six.

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The 11th Aeroflot Open is taking place in Moscow from February 7 to 15, 2012, for the first time in the Cosmos Hotel (above), which is one of the largest in Moscow. Tourney mode: Open tourney 9 rounds Swiss System. Time control: 100 minutes/40 moves + 50 minutes/20 moves + 15 minutes + 30 seconds/move starting with the first move. Game start: all rounds 12:00 (15:00 local Moscow time). Tiebreak systems: For tournament A and B: 1st: The number of games played with Black. Byes and forfeited games will be considered as games played with White. 2nd: The average of the opponents' ratings minus the highest and the lowest rating. You can find more on all the regulations of the tournament here.

Report after round six

With three rounds to go Moscow is in the middle of one of the coldest days of this winter: –25° C or –13°F (considerably colder than the deep freeze section of your refrigerator). In spite of this the correspondent of the Russian Chess Federation, Eteri Kublashvili, came over to the tournament venue to talk with participants. Before we come to that, however, let us look at the latest scores:

Standings after six rounds

Rk Player Pts Fed. Rtng perf.
1 GM Korobov, Anton 5.0 UKR 2660 2925
2 GM Eljanov, Pavel 4.5 UKR 2690 2822
3 GM Bartel, Mateusz 4.5 POL 2658 2829
4 GM Caruana, Fabiano 4.5 ITA 2736 2831
5 GM Rodshtein, Maxim 4.0 ISR 2634 2767
6 GM Esen, Baris 4.0 TUR 2534 2788
7 GM Tomashevsky, Evgeny 4.0 RUS 2740 2747
8 GM Khalifman, Alexander 4.0 RUS 2632 2757
9 GM Alekseev, Evgeny 4.0 RUS 2670 2755
10 GM Andreikin, Dmitry 4.0 RUS 2688 2745
11 GM Fedoseev, Vladimir 4.0 RUS 2525 2741
12 GM Bu, Xiangzhi 4.0 CHN 2670 2734
13 GM Melkumyan, Hrant 4.0 ARM 2620 2734
14 GM Safarli, Eltaj 4.0 AZE 2638 2728
15 GM Iordachescu, Viorel 4.0 MDA 2651 2735
16 GM Sokolov, Ivan 4.0 NED 2641 2790
17 GM Balogh, Csaba 4.0 HUN 2665 2751
18 GM Zherebukh, Yaroslav 3.5 UKR 2594 2728
19 GM Gajewski, Grzegorz 3.5 POL 2616 2688
 
Rk Player Pts Fed. Rtng perf.
20 GM Rakhmanov, Aleksandr 3.5 RUS 2593 2702
21 GM Robson, Ray 3.5 USA 2596 2683
22 GM Socko, Bartosz 3.5 POL 2636 2685
23 GM Sethuraman, S.P. 3.5 IND 2529 2703
24 GM Nisipeanu, Liviu-Dieter 3.5 ROU 2647 2695
25 GM Jobava, Baadur 3.5 GEO 2704 2683
26 GM Sasikiran, Krishnan 3.5 IND 2700 2684
27 GM Zhigalko, Sergei 3.5 BLR 2658 2679
28 GM Zvjaginsev, Vadim 3.5 RUS 2688 2672
29 GM Khismatullin, Denis 3.5 RUS 2664 2673
30 GM Popov, Ivan 3.5 RUS 2599 2659
31 GM Nepomniachtchi, Ian 3.5 RUS 2735 2641
32 GM Bocharov, Dmitry 3.5 RUS 2611 2650
33 GM Ragger, Markus 3.5 AUT 2655 2607
34 GM Sandipan, Chanda 3.5 IND 2628 2633
35 GM Zhou, Jianchao 3.5 CHN 2619 2597
36 GM Gupta, Abhijeet 3.5 IND 2652 2698
37 GM Sjugirov, Sanan 3.5 RUS 2622 2680
38 IM Grigoryan, Karen H. 3.5 ARM 2482 2613

You will immediately notice the sterling performance of 19-year-old Fabiano Caruana (picture above), who is playing at a 2831 level. After three rounds and 2.5 points he was at 2910, which we duly celebrated in our previous report. But then Fabiano lost unhappily to the tournament leader Anton Korobov in round four, validating the Portuguese saying: "Não se pode elogiar" ("You cannot compliment him/her"), which paraphrases to: the creator of the universe reads chess news sites and if he thinks people are getting too cocky he will cut them down to size. However, Fab Fab, whom we have been embarrassing on our news page for a number of years now, fought back with two consecutive wins (against GMs Ildar Khairullin, 2638, and Hrant Melkumyan, 2620) to climb into equal second place and is now poised for a go at first. Yes, yes, we know: Não se pode elogiar.

About her unusual little interview with Fabiano Caruana, Eteri Kublashvili reports that "despite his young age and lean physique" Fabiano has a deep voice, "like an Italian bass".

Fabiano, congratulations on winning today! How are you playing in Moscow?

Everything is going fine. True, I lost one game, but then things went smoothly. In Moscow, it is very cold, so I do not go out – there is no time anyway. But a year ago, when I was playing in GUM at the World Championship Blitz, I saw the Red Square, Kremlin, the Mausoleum.

You now live in Italy?

No, my family and I live in Lugano, Switzerland.

As an Italian, are interested in football, cars?

No, not really. I do sports, play squash, sometimes go to the gym, ride a bike. I love to watch movies.

What is your favorite movie?


Fabiano Caruana [portrait by Frits Agterdenbos, ChessVista]

I like so many, so it is difficult to pick one. Maybe Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.

And how do you like Russian women?

Very nice. Women should be given a lot of time, they love to have fun, they do not like to sit around. For me to like someone it is not necessary for her to play chess.

And your family, does everyone play chess?

Very little, almost not at all.

Who taught to play chess?

I learnt it in school, at around five years of age. I started playing with other children.

Who are you training with now?

Grandmaster Vladimir Chuchelov.

How do you evaluate this tournament and the participants?

A very strong tournament, one of the strongest Opens in the world. The leading players are rated above 2700, so it is a very tough tournament to play.

Source: Russian Chess Federation web site


Tournament leader Anton Korobov during his game against Fabiano Caruana, who missed clear
drawing chances when he played 31...Ra5? instead of 31...Rxb3=+ [photo Chess-News]

Live ratings: 12 February 2012, 17:59 GMT

# Name Rating
+/–
Games
Age (born)
1 Carlsen 2834.6
-0.4
13
21 (30.11.1990)
2 Aronian 2825.3
+20.3
16
29 (06.10.1982)
3 Kramnik 2801.0
0.0
0
36 (25.06.1975)
4 Anand 2799.0
0.0
0
42 (11.12.1969)
5 Radjabov 2784.4
+11.4
13
24 (12.03.1987)
6 Nakamura 2770.8
+11.8
23
24 (09.12.1987)
7 Caruana 2769.4
+33.4
29
19 (30.07.1992)
8 Karjakin 2766.2
-2.8
13
22 (12.01.1990)
9 Morozevich 2764.8
+1.8
10
34 (18.07.1977)
10 Ivanchuk 2763.7
-2.3
23
42 (18.03.1969)
11 Grischuk 2761.0
0.0
0
28 (31.10.1983)
12 Mamedyarov 2752.0
+5.0
10
26 (12.04.1985)
13 Topalov 2751.9
-18.1
13
36 (15.03.1975)
14 Kamsky 2741.3
+9.3
13
37 (02.06.1974)
15 Svidler 2740.9
-8.1
13
35 (17.06.1976)
16 Tomashevsky 2740.7
+0.7
6
24 (01.07.1987)
17 Gashimov 2736.8
-24.2
18
25 (24.07.1986)
18 Wang Hao 2733.0
0.0
0
22 (04.08.1989)
19 Dominguez 2730.0
0.0
0
28 (23.09.1983)
20 Jakovenko 2729.0
0.0
0
28 (28.06.1983)

In the live ratings list (of IM Artiom Tsepotan and IA Dr. Christopher Wright) we see that Fabiano has advanced to seventh place in the world and is knocking loudly at Hikaru Nakamura's door. Certainly Carlsen and Aronian will be training their orbital cameras on this young upstart. A plus of 33 points in one rating period and at this level of play is truly remarkable.

Links

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