Aeroflot Open: Artemiev in sole lead

by Niklesh Kumar Jain
2/25/2018 – The Aeroflot Open 2018 has passed the half-way mark, and Russia's talented young grandmaster Artemiev Vladislav is now the only player with 4½ points at the top of the table. On Saturday, he showed his class to outplay the experienced Moldavian, Victor Bologan, taking advantage of small inaccuracies to convert the full point. It will be exciting to see if Fedoseev, Vidit and Andreikin can make a comeback in the second half of the event. | Photo: Niklesh Jain

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Russian "prince" beats Bologan in key game

Vladislav Artemiev, who turns 20 on March 5th, is one of a cadre of young Russians who has been waiting in the wings for a shot on the world stage. He hasn't yet fulfilled the promise of his 2013 triumph at the Youth Stars tournament, which he won by a staggering margin of 2½ points, posting the imposing final tally of 10½ / 11. Since then, his rating has plateaued a bit, although he currently stands at his all-time peak and is on track to cross 2700 for the first time with his performance in Moscow through the first five days.

Artemiev's rating

With 4½ / 5, Artemiev currently stands at 2710 | Playerbase

In round 5, on board one, Artemiev outplayed Victor Bologan and scored a nice win in a kind-of reverse French structure, in which White played 9.g4!


Just a few moves later, White was clearly for choice, as Bologan's centre collapsed, and his king was stuck there too.


Victor Bologan

Nothing went well for Bologan | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Another co-leader Tigran Petrosian played a short draw against Dimitry Gordievsky and is now in joint second with two other players.

Former FIDE World Champion Alexander Khalifman also looks good in Aeroflot. In the fifth round he played top seed Vladimir Fedoseev to a draw. 

Petrosian and Khalifman

Tigran Petrosian and Alexander Khalifman | Photo: Niklesh Jain

After beating Rauf Mamedov in the previous round, Indian GM Murali Karthikeyan held another 2700-player, Maxim Matlakov, in round five.


Matlakov vs Karthikeyan

Matlakov vs Karthikeyan | Photo: Niklesh Jain

The lowest rated, but best performing Indian player IM Eesha Karavade faced her first defeat of the tournament at the hands of GM Vladislav Kovalev, who moved to joint second with the score 4.0 / 5 points.


White tightened his grip with the king march from h2 to e5.


Eesha vs Kovalev

IM Eesha Karavade and GM Vladislav Kovalev | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Igor Lysyj was another player to watch today. He outplayed talented Iranian Parham Maghsoodloo in a nice endgame. 


After Black missed a chance for advantage, White went on to convert his positional advantage in the queen and knight ending.


Igor Lysyj

His name means "Igor the bald" but that doesn't seem to be a concern just yet! | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Indian star GM Vidit Gujrathi is still missing his first win of the tournament. He played a fifth draw in a row, and stands on an even score 2½ / 5, well out of contention for first.

Vidit Gujrathi

GM Vidit Gujrathi | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Gata Kamsky

The great Gata currently on 3.0/4 | Photo: Niklesh Jain


Uzbek child prodigy Nodirbek Abdusattorov looks very solid with a 2694 performance | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Antipov vs Andreikin

After scoring his first victory Dmitry Andreikin hold by Mikhail Antipov | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Alexander Skopovskiy

Alexander Skopovskiy manages the players' transportation, visas and the live broadcast

Standings after round five (top 25) 



FIDE Instructor Niklesh Kumar Jain Jain is an international chess player who has participated in tournaments in almost in 20 different countries, winning the international tournament in Sri Lanka in 2010. He also worked for a television network as an anchor and news writer for two years and reported in Hindi during World Chess Championship 2013 and 2014.


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