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Tal Memorial Rd9 – Carlsen takes title in record event

6/19/2012 – It is almost fitting that the final round saw yet another unexpected series of results leading to a surprise winner: Magnus Carlsen. Fabiano Caruana fell into some nasty home preparation by Levon Aronian and lost, while Carlsen beat Luke McShane in a model game to take clear first. With his win a record was possibly set. Final report with video and GM analysis.
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Seventh Tal Memorial in Moscow

The event is a ten-player round robin event, is taking place from June 8th to 18th in the Pashkov House (Vozdvizhenka Street 3/5, p.1), Moscow, Russia. Rest days are June 11 and 15. Time control: 100 minutes for the first 40 moves, 50 minutes for the next 20 moves, and 15 minutes for the rest of the game, with an increment of 30 seconds per move starting from move one. Games start at 15:00h local time (last round 13:00h). Draw offers are not allowed until after the first time control. The participants are required to comment on their games in the press center after each round. The prize fund is 100,000 Euros.

Round 9: Monday, June 18, 2012
Levon Aronian
1-0
Fabiano Caruana
Hikaru Nakamura
½-½
Teimour Radjabov
Ev. Tomashevsky
½-½
Alexander Grischuk
Luke McShane
0-1
Magnus Carlsen
Vladimir Kramnik
½-½
Alex. Morozevich

Round nine


Dedicated videographers and photographers capture the opening moments

After so many dramatic twists and turns, the Tal Memorial finally ended, and possibly with a genuine record. No doubt the masters of such lists can confirm or debunk it, but with only nine rounds and ten players, five different sole leaders is quite probably a first, at least in a GM round robin.


Caruana ran head first into Aronian's deadly opening preparation

Three players had clear chances, and though Fabiano Caruana had a half point lead, he also had the toughest opponent: Levon Aronian. It was his poor luck that he fell into some prime home preparation by the world number two, and was unable to salvage a disintegrating position.

Annotated game by GM Gilberto Milos

While Teimour Radjabov drew with Hikaru Nakamura to draw level with Caruana, Magnus Carlsen took complete advantage of his last and best chance to lay claim to the crown. In a game that was nearly a model of how to exploit Luke McShane’s opening choice, he left the Brit no chance to complicate the game, and outplayed him quite thoroughly to take clear first and thus become the fifth and last sole leader.


It was an unexpected window of opportunity, and Magnus Carlsen
made it count.


Alexander Grischuk looks down, seated next to his daughter and wife, WGM Natalia Zhukova

Alexander Grischuk had a chance of lifting himself past the 50% mark, when he built a very large advantage in his endgame against Evgeny Tomashevsky, but a mistake on the 40th move dashed this hope away and a draw was agreed shortly after.

The longest game was between the two previous leaders: Vladimir Kramnik and Alexander Morozevich, both who were trying to recover from a series of painful losses that had dropped them from hero to the break even point. Kramnik emerged with an extra pawn in the endgame, but Morozevich’s active pieces made the task of converting a tough one, and eventually his resourcefulness saved the game.


Teimour Radjabov (3rd), Magnus Carlsen (1st) and Fabiano Caruana (2nd)

Complete round nine games

Tal Memorial 2012 Round nine Play of the Day by Daniel King: McShane - Carlsen

Pictures by Eteri Kublashvili

Final standings

 

Once again the Russian organisers are providing unprecedented coverage,
with HD video stream of the action and commentary by grandmasters.
In addition there is excellent commentary by GM Ian Rogers from Sydney.

Schedule and Results

Round 1: Friday, June 8, 2012
Alex. Morozevich
1-0
Fabiano Caruana
Magnus Carlsen
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik 
Alexander Grischuk
1-0
Luke McShane
Teimour Radjabov
1-0
Ev. Tomashevsky
Levon Aronian
1-0
Hikaru Nakamura
Round 2: Saturday, June 9, 2012
Fabiano Caruana
½-½
Hikaru Nakamura
Ev. Tomashevsky
½-½
Levon Aronian
Luke McShane
0-1
Teimour Radjabov
Vladimir Kramnik
1-0
Alexander Grischuk
Alex. Morozevich
½-½
Magnus Carlsen
Round 3: Sunday, June 10, 2012
Magnus Carlsen
½-½
Fabiano Caruana
Alexander Grischuk
0-1
Alex. Morozevich
Teimour Radjabov
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik
Levon Aronian
0-1
Luke McShane
Hikaru Nakamura
½-½
Ev. Tomashevsky
Round 4: Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Fabiano Caruana
1-0
Ev. Tomashevsky
Luke McShane
½-½
Hikaru Nakamura
Vladimir Kramnik
½-½
Levon Aronian
Alex. Morozevich
½-½
Teimour Radjabov
Magnus Carlsen
½-½
Alexander Grischuk
Round 5: Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Alexander Grischuk
½-½
Fabiano Caruana
Teimour Radjabov
0-1
Magnus Carlsen
Levon Aronian
0-1
Alex. Morozevich
Hikaru Nakamura
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik
Ev. Tomashevsky
½-½
Luke McShane
Round 6: Thursday, June 14, 2012
Fabiano Caruana
1-0
Luke McShane
Vladimir Kramnik
1-0
Ev. Tomashevsky
Alex. Morozevich
0-1
Hikaru Nakamura
Magnus Carlsen
½-½
Levon Aronian
Alexander Grischuk
½-½
Teimour Radjabov
Round 7: Saturday, June 16, 2012
Teimour Radjabov
½-½
Fabiano Caruana
Levon Aronian
½-½
Alexander Grischuk
Hikaru Nakamura
½-½
Magnus Carlsen
Ev. Tomashevsky
1-0
Alex. Morozevich
Luke McShane
1-0
Vladimir Kramnik
Round 8: Sunday, June 17, 2012
Fabiano Caruana
1-0
Vladimir Kramnik
Alex. Morozevich
0-1
Luke McShane
Magnus Carlsen
½-½
Ev. Tomashevsky
Alexander Grischuk
1-0
Hikaru Nakamura
Teimour Radjabov
½-½
Levon Aronian
Round 9: Monday, June 18, 2012
Levon Aronian
1-0
Fabiano Caruana
Hikaru Nakamura
½-½
Teimour Radjabov
Ev. Tomashevsky
½-½
Alexander Grischuk
Luke McShane
0-1
Magnus Carlsen
Vladimir Kramnik
½-½
Alex. Morozevich

Links

The games are being 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 there and get immediate access. You can also use ChessBase 11 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.

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