LCC R9: Carlsen first, Kramnik second, both with big wins

12/10/2012 – It was a thrilling conclusion to a historic event. In the final round, Judit Polgar drew with Levon Aronian, while Vladimir Kramnik also drew, with Michael Adams. Hikaru Nakamura fought against Luke McShane, who blundered, while Magnus Carlsen, despite a guaranteed first, pressed hard against Vishy Anand, came close to winning, but eventually drew. Full report with postgame analysis.

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The 2012 London Chess Classic took place in the Olympia Conference Centre from Saturday, December 1st until Monday, December 10th. A win was counted as three points, a draw as one, and a loss zero.

Round nine report

By GM Alejandro Ramirez

The tournament doesn’t end with a bang, but to be fair the entire event was very exciting and hard fought. This was my favorite tournament to follow this year.

Round 9: Monday, Dec. 10th, 2012, 12:00h
Michael Adams
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik
Judit Polgar
½-½
Levon Aronian 
Hikaru Nakamura
1-0
Luke McShane
Magnus Carlsen
½-½
Vishy Anand
Gawain Jones (bye) – assisting commentary

Judit Polgar-Levon Aronian ½-½
The Marshall has always been a hot topic in the Spanish Opening. Aronian has used it time and time again to defend successfully with the black pieces, and today was no exception. The pawn sacrifice led to too much activity for Black, who eventually equalized, and the game ended in a draw.

Michael Adams-Vladimir Kramnik ½-½
In another Spanish Opening, Michael Adams employed a variation that Kasimdzhanov has been fancying lately against the Berlin setup. I’m very skeptical about the entire variation, and Kramnik showed one of probably many ways to equalize easily. Neither side had a decent winning chance in the entire game.

Hikaru Nakamura-Luke McShane 1-0
A very interesting a6 Slav turned into a fighting game when Luke sacrificed the exchange for a pawn and a powerful knight on e5. However, soon afterwards he committed an atrocious blunder, and Hikaru simply scooped up an extra piece, forcing instant resignation. The American finishes the tournament on a high note and regains some valuable rating points which he had lost in the previous tournament.

Magnus Carlsen-Vishy Anand ½-½
Carlsen tried and tried and tried, despite only needing a draw. The third Ruy Lopez of the day gave the Norwegian little, and although Anand had some difficulties here and there, he was never in any serious danger. Eventually the game was drawn as Anand showed good defensive skill.


The winner with a 2994 performance: Magnus Carlsen, who now leads on the live ratings

Top ten Live Chess Ratings [10 December 2012, 18:54 GMT]

#
Name
Rating
+/–
Games
Chart
Age
1
Carlsen
2861.4
+13.4
6

22 (30.11.1990)
2
Kramnik
2809.7
+14.7
6

37 (25.06.1975)
3
Aronian
2802.2
-12.8
5

30 (06.10.1982)
4
Radjabov
2793.0
0.0
0

25 (12.03.1987)
5
Caruana
2780.6
-1.4
11

20 (30.07.1992)
6
Karjakin
2780.3
+5.3
11

22 (12.01.1990)
7
Anand
2772.1
-2.9
5

42 (11.12.1969)
8
Topalov
2771.0
0.0
0

37 (15.03.1975)
9
Mamedyarov
2766.4
+2.4
11

27 (12.04.1985)
10
Ivanchuk
2766.0
0.0
0

43 (18.03.1969

Pictures by Ray Morris-Hill, Frederic Friedel and Pascal Simon

Replay all the games of the round

Standings (London scoring)

Standings (traditional scoring)


Live commentary


Live commentary during the games was provided by experts – above Malcolm Pein, Danny
King and Stephen Gordon – for the audience in London, the official broadcast and on Playchess

Postgame analysis of the games by the players


Immediately after the games the players would appear in the commentary room to analyse (above Michael Adams and Vladimir Kramnik, with Stephen Gordon and David Howell). This too was broadcast on the official site and on Playchess.

Postgame analysis Judit Polgar vs Levon Aronian

Postgame analysis Hikaru Nakamura vs Luke McShane

Postgame analysis Magnus Carlsen vs Vishy Anand

Daniel King: Play of the day

Andrew Martin Play of the Day (Nakamura vs McShane)

Live video coverage and commentary

 


Pairings and results

Round 1: Saturday, Dec. 1st, 2012, 14:00h
Luke McShane
0-1
Magnus Carlsen
Levon Aronian
0-1
Hikaru Nakamura
Vladimir Kramnik
1-0
Judit Polgar
Gawain Jones
0-1
Michael Adams
Vishy Anand (bye) – assisting commentary
Round 2: Sunday, Dec. 2nd, 2012, 14:00h
Judit Polgar
½-½
Gawain Jones 
Hikaru Nakamura
0-1
Vladimir Kramnik
Magnus Carlsen
1-0
Levon Aronian
Vishy Anand
½-½
Luke McShane 
Michael Adams (bye) – assisting commentary
Round 3: Monday, Dec. 3rd, 2012, 14:00h
Levon Aronian
½-½
Vishy Anand
Vladimir Kramnik
½-½
Magnus Carlsen
Gawain Jones
½-½
Hikaru Nakamura
Michael Adams
1-0
Judit Polgar
Luke McShane (bye) – assisting commentary
Round 4: Tuesday, Dec. 4th, 2012, 16:00h
Hikaru Nakamura
½-½
Michael Adams
Magnus Carlsen
1-0
Gawain Jones
Vishy Anand
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik
Luke McShane
0-1
Levon Aronian
Judit Polgar (bye) – assisting commentary
Wednesday, Dec. 5th, 2012 Rest day
Round 5: Thursday, Dec. 6th, 2012, 14:00h
Vladimir Kramnik
1-0
Luke McShane
Gawain Jones
0-1
Vishy Anand
Michael Adams
0-1
Magnus Carlsen
Judit Polgar
0-1
Hikaru Nakamura
Levon Aronian (bye) – assisting commentary
Round 6: Friday, Dec. 7th, 2012, 14:00h
Magnus Carlsen
1-0
Judit Polgar
Vishy Anand
0-1
Michael Adams
Luke McShane
1-0
Gawain Jones 
Levon Aronian
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik
Hikaru Nakamura (bye) – assisting commentary
Round 7: Saturday, Dec. 8th, 2012, 14:00h
Gawain Jones 
½-½
Levon Aronian
Michael Adams 
½-½
Luke McShane
Judit Polgar
½-½
Vishy Anand
Hikaru Nakamura
½-½
Magnus Carlsen
Vladimir Kramnik (bye) – assisting commentary
Round 8: Sunday, Dec. 9th, 2012, 14:00h
Vishy Anand
½-½
Hikaru Nakamura
Luke McShane
0-1
Judit Polgar
Levon Aronian
½-½
Michael Adams
Vladimir Kramnik
1-0
Gawain Jones 
Magnus Carlsen (bye) – assisting commentary
Round 9: Monday, Dec. 10th, 2012, 12:00h
Michael Adams
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik
Judit Polgar
½-½
Levon Aronian 
Hikaru Nakamura
1-0
Luke McShane
Magnus Carlsen
½-½
Vishy Anand
Gawain Jones (bye) – assisting commentary

The games – except for rounds four and nine – start at 2 p.m. or 14:00h British time = 15:00h CET, 17:00h Moscow, 7:30 p.m. Chennai, 22:00h Beijing, 01:00 a.m. Melbourne, 03:00 a.m. Auckland, 6 a.m. San José, 9 a.m. New York. You can check your location here. Naturally the games will be covered live on the official web site (below) and on Playchess. The games of round four begin two hours later, those of the final round two hours earlier.

Watch the live stream from the London Chess classic here.


Links

The games will be broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server Playchess.com. If you are not a member you can download a free Playchess client and get immediate access. Or you can get our latest Fritz 13 program, which includes six months free premium membership to Playchess.


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