Morelia R6: Radjabov beats Carlsen, Topalov-Anand draw

2/23/2008 – It was a long day. Topalov vs Anand was the first game to end, in a tough draw. Ivanchuk-Shirov followed suit. Then Teimour Radjabov succeeded in overcoming the defences of Magnus Carlsen and scoring a full point. Shortly after nine p.m. Lev Aronian gave up trying to beat Peter Leko. We bring you a summary and lots of pictures in our express report.

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Morelia-Linares 2008

The Morelia-Linares tournament is taking place from February 15th to 23rd February in Morelia, Mexico, and from 28th February to 7th March in Linares, Spain.

Round six express

Round 6: Friday, February 22nd

Veselin Topalov 
½-½
 Vishy Anand
Levon Aronian 
½-½
 Peter Leko
Teimour Radjabov 
1-0
 Magnus Carlsen
Vassily Ivanchuk 
½-½
 Alexei Shirov

Summary of round six

By Antonio Galan Alcala

Round six showed some interesting chess in keeping the pace with the trend seen throughout the Mexican leg of the Morelia-Linares Supertournament. In all four boards the players went for highly combative games, seeking out for unbalanced positions and pressing hard for the win.

A most expected game between Topalov and Anand saw a Nimzo-Indian where the World Champion with the black side got some dynamic play for his pieces in exchange for a weakness in his kingside. Topalov tried to make the best of his slight advantage but the position drifted to a Queen vs. Queen ending and a perpetual ensued.

In the Slav Defense, Ivanchuk with white got little out of the opening against Shirov. After some minor struggle in the center connected with black’s expansion in the kingside, the queens went off the board and the draw was agreed on move 27.

In the encounter between the youngest players of the tournament (both former child prodigies), Radjabov faced Carlsen’s Berlin Wall of the Ruy Lopez. Despite a seemingly harmless approach, this game proved the only decisive in the round. Carlsen won a pawn on move 20 but allowed uncomfortable pressure by the two bishops and a rook. Soon, Radjabov shattered his opponent’s queenside pawn structure, earned a couple of pawns and created an unstoppable passed pawn of his own. And that was it.

But the highlight of the round was the game Aronian-Leko. In a Symmetrical English, the interesting novelty Qa4 made Leko think for over 80 minutes (!). Despite time pressure, Black managed to put up a tough resistance. Having surrendered a pawn and making some unusual moves for him, Leko found shelter for his king and reasonable counterplay against Aronian’s queenside castling. For a while, White’s win seemed certain but hard to prove. In the end, white somehow lost the thread and allowed Rxa3 which led to an immediate draw after the necessary Rc6.

Antonio Galan Alcala is a Mexican chess amateur with a good playing level and a respectable knowledge of the culture of the chess game. He holds a Bachelor’s in Geological Engineering and a Master’s degree in Technology Management.

Antonio has been well acquainted with the Mexican chess environment for many years now and is commonly involved in efforts to spread a better understanding of the game through its many links with fields such as Mathematics, Literature, technology, etc. He lives in Mexico City and works for the National University.

Standings after six rounds


Picture gallery


The stage in the Theatro Ocampo is prepared for Round six


A Mexican camera man adjusts his focus and – very important – the white balance


Teimour Radjabov is, as usual, the first on the stage


Peter Leko arrives and draws the fire of the photographers


Then it is Vassily Ivanchuk's turn to face the media


As more and more players arrive the photographers scurry back and forth


Anand and Topalov are surrounded


At last their game is under way


Teimour Radjabov starts his game against Magnus Carlsen


Levon Aronian (white) against Peter Leko


Magnus Carlsen vs Teimour Radjabov


World Champion against former World Champion: Vishy Anand vs Veselin Topalov


Magnus refreshes himself with his OJ drink


The first game to end is Topalov vs Anand

.
The two analyse for a while in the post-game cubicle in the press center


Animated discussion between the two players


Outside Aruna Anand waits for The Vish


Gottcha! Sofi Leko catches us photographing her studying German literature in the darkened theatre


Meanwhile husband Peter Leko is struggling to hold his game against Levon Aronian


The arbiters Juan Vargas and Faik Gasanov follow every move


Teimour Radjabov about to execute his final move, 43.Bc5-e3


Immediately after this move Magnus Carlsen resigns (no, we didn't catch it)


The arbiter collects the scoresheets and signatures


At the entrance Radjabov is mobbed by fans


Teimour spends fifteen or twenty minutes signing programmes or posing with fans


...and then still has the energy to answer the questions of journalists


The last game, Aronian vs Leko, ends shortly after 9 p.m. in a draw

All pictures by Frederic Friedel in Morelia


Schedule and results

Round 1: Friday, February 15th

Alexei Shirov 
0-1
 Vishy Anand
Magnus Carlsen 
½-½
 Vassily Ivanchuk
 Peter Leko 
1-0
 Teimour Radjabov
Veselin Topalov 
1-0
 Levon Aronian

Round 2: Saturday, February 16th

Vishy Anand 
0-1
 Levon Aronian
Teimour Radjabov 
½-½
 Veselin Topalov
Vassily Ivanchuk 
1-0
 Peter Leko
Alexei Shirov 
½-½
 Magnus Carlsen

Round 3: Sunday, February 17th

Magnus Carlsen 
0-1
 Vishy Anand
Peter Leko 
½-½
 Alexei Shirov
Veselin Topalov 
1-0
 Vassily Ivanchuk
Levon Aronian 
½-½
 Teimour Radjabov
Monday, February 18th
Free day

Round 4: Tuesday, February 19th

Vishy Anand 
½-½
 Teimour Radjabov
Vassily Ivanchuk 
0-1
 Levon Aronian
Alexei Shirov 
1-0
 Veselin Topalov
Magnus Carlsen 
½-½
 Peter Leko

Round 5: Wednesday, February 20th

Peter Leko 
0-1
 Vishy Anand
Veselin Topalov 
0-1
 Magnus Carlsen
Levon Aronian 
½-½
 Alexei Shirov
Teimour Radjabov 
½-½
 Vassily Ivanchuk
Thursday, February 21st
Free day

Round 6: Friday, February 22nd

Veselin Topalov 
½-½
 Vishy Anand
Levon Aronian 
½-½
 Peter Leko
Teimour Radjabov 
1-0
 Magnus Carlsen
Vassily Ivanchuk 
½-½
 Alexei Shirov

Round 7: Saturday, February 23rd

Vishy Anand 
   Vassily Ivanchuk
Alexei Shirov 
   Teimour Radjabov
Magnus Carlsen 
   Levon Aronian
Peter Leko 
   Veselin Topalov
GamesReport
Sunday, February 25th
Transfer to Linares, Spain

Links

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