Biel Rd8 - Magnus Carlsen five Elo shy of Kasparov record

8/1/2012 – It was a precipitous round in every way imaginable. Anish Giri found himself lost against Etienne Bacrot, but turned the tables around and won. Wang Hao also had a difficult position against Hikaru Nakamura but won, while Magnus Carlsen beat Viktor Bologan to keep the lead and come within five Elo of Kasparov's record 2851. Our challenge received many replies, including a world champion.

ChessBase 14 Download ChessBase 14 Download

Everyone uses ChessBase, from the World Champion to the amateur next door. Start your personal success story with ChessBase 14 and enjoy your chess even more!


Along with the ChessBase 14 program you can access the Live Database of 8 million games, and receive three months of free ChesssBase Account Premium membership and all of our online apps! Have a look today!

More...

The 2012 Biel Chess Festival is taking place from July 23rd to August 2nd, in a number of groups: the Master Tournament (eleven rounds Swiss); the Main Tournament (nine rounds Swiss); a Rapid and a Blitz tournament; Chess960; Youth, Simultaneous, Chess Tennis, ChessBase training seminars. Of greatest interest is of course the Accentus Grandmaster Tournament with six very strong grandmasters playing a double round robin: Magnus Carlsen, Hikaru Nakamura, Alex. Morozevich, Wang Hao, Etienne Bacrot and Anish Giri.


Hikaru Nakamura, Etienne Bacrot, Magnus Carlsen, Wang Hao, Anish Giri and Alex Morozevich

The rate of play: 40 moves in 100 minutes, then 20 moves in 50 minutes followed by 15 minutes for the rest of the game, with 30 sec increment per move. The scoring system is three points for a win, one for a draw and zero for a loss. No draw offers are permitted before move 30.

Round eight

Round 8: Tuesday, July 31, 14:00h
Hikaru Nakamura  
0-1
 Wang Hao
Magnus Carlsen 
1-0
 Viktor Bologan
Etienne Bacrot 
0-1
 Anish Giri


The arbiters

Precipitous, dramatic, … take your pick for hyperbole, it will fit like a glove. The eighth round presented not only action and drama, but also a bit of history on the horizon.

Etienne Bacrot will be kicking himself for the missed opportunity, as he failed to put away Anish Giri when he had the chance. The young Dutch player played a Sicilian as a horizon-widener one supposes, and it was very much contrary to his feel and understanding of the game as was clear in the post-mortem.


The players ready themselves for the start

The position deteriorated and he reached a position where he saw the killer line himself. He was so conformed with the impending loss, that he began planning his opening approach in the next round. Instead, the former French prodigy not only missed the blow, but began to slip badly allowing Anish to play for a win himself. He made no mistake at this unexpected reprieve and ended the game with computer perfection.


Anish Giri vows to never play the Sicilian again  


Let no one say Wang Hao did not fight to his utmost for the gold

Hikaru Nakamura was also on the end of an unpleasant reversal, though not quite so dramatic. He emerged from the opening with the clearly better chances against co-leader Wang Hao, but Wang was not seeking to lick his wounds from the day before. He was out for blood, and in the post-mortem explained how he discarded lines that looked drawish, willingly taking risks to keep his chances for first alive. His fighting spirit was rewarded as Nakamura blundered allowing the Chinese player to reel in the point.


Wang Hao described how he avoided non-combative lines

In a sense, Magnus Carlsen’s victory over Viktor Bologan was the least surprising of the results, simply because his motivation has to be the highest, whereas the Moldavian player has been unable to shine as he would have liked. To put it mildly. Once again he chose the Benko Gambit, and once again the play he obtained was insufficient compensation for the pawn. Ironically it was precisely White’s extra queenside pawn that threatened to queen that decided it.


Magnus Carlsen knocking on history's door

This win brought more than just a point and the top spot on the leaderboard. It moved him to a bit over 2846 on the live ratings lists, within just five Elo of Kasparov’s record 2851 FIDE set in 1999. Should he manage to win his last two games, he is assured of breaking the record rating. Hold your breath and cross your fingers!


In the Master tournament with over 30 grandmasters, Romain Edouard is the current
leader with 6.5/8.

In the previous round, we published the following picture, and challenged the readers to come up with their own labels.

Here are a few of the contributions we received from our readers, including a world champion:

"Hmmm... I think we should invite this Bologan more often to my tournaments."
Dominic Menard – Brossard, Canada

Photographer: 'OK. Now Magnus, for the next photo: deep in thought looking at the demonstration board, and suddenly your mobile rings.'
Roland Kensdale – Ellon, Scotland

"2850 Elo or more this year? Why not?"
Javier Capistran – Mexico D. F.

"Wait a second. Isn't there a mate in 25?"
Elmer D Sangalang – Manila, the Philippines

"Do they think that can stop me?!"
Ata – Tehran, Iran

"Let's see, whom am I going to defeat today?"
Gabor Szots – Szentendre, Hungary

"It's not cheating to use the Cloud."
Lonnie Kwartler – Chester, NY, USA

A bored Carlsen awaiting someone to give him a real challenge
Monika Lædre – Skjetten, Norway

"I forgot to bring my shades...."
John Blake – Galway, Ireland

"Wait...I forgot his name, give me a second...Ahh, Kasparov."
Thomas Johansson – Uppsala, Sweden

"Is it only me or can everyone hear a 2851 calling?"
Reggie Beneke – Cape Town, RSA

"I wonder what would Kasparov do??"
David – Lebanon

"If I try hard I wonder if I can sit down in public and sleep with this hard error face."
Jan-Ove Waldner – Stockholm, Sweden

We'd like to mention to those who may not be familiar with the sender above. Jan-Ove Waldner is considered by many to be the greatest table tennis player to have ever lived. The veritable Michael Jordan of the sport, he is known as "the Mozart of table tennis". As an athlete, he won it all from Olympic gold medal to multiple world championships.

Here is a video highlighting his breathtaking skill:

 


Traditional standings after eight rounds

Three-point standings after eight rounds

Pictures by Pascal Simon


Live GM commentary on Playchess

There is live audio and video commentary on the chess server Playchess. The English commentary starts at 3:30 p.m., and German commentary directly from the playing site begins at 4:00 p.m. In addition Yasser Seirawan is doing round-up shows at 8:00 p.m. on the days he is commenting.

Commentary schedule

Wednesday 1/08/2012 Klaus Bischoff Sam Collins
Thursday 2/08/2012 Klaus Bischoff Sam Collins

As a special treat the multimedia commentary live from Biel is also available on our live browser coverage. This also includes the players analysing after their games.


Overview: schedule and results

Round 1: Monday, July 23, 14:00h
Magnus Carlsen 
½-½
 Hikaru Nakamura
Wang Hao 
1-0
 Etienne Bacrot
Alex. Morozevich 
0-1
 Anish Giri 
Round 2: Tuesday, July 24, 14:00h
Hikaru Nakamura 
½-½
 Anish Giri
Etienne Bacrot 
1-0
 Alex. Morozevich
Magnus Carlsen 
1-0
 Wang Hao
Round 3: Wednesday, July 25, 14:00h
Wang Hao 
1-0
 Hikaru Nakamura
Viktor Bologan 
0-1
 Magnus Carlsen
Anish Giri 
1-0
 Etienne Bacrot 
Round 4: Thursday, July 26, 14:00h
Viktor Bologan 
0-1
 Hikaru Nakamura
Anish Giri 
0-1
 Wang Hao
Etienne Bacrot 
½-½
 Magnus Carlsen
Round 5: Friday, July 27, 14:00h
Hikaru Nakamura 
1-0
 Etienne Bacrot 
Magnus Carlsen 
½-½
 Anish Giri
Wang Hao 
1-0
 Viktor Bologan
Round 6: Saturday, July 28, 14:00h
Hikaru Nakamura 
½-½
 Magnus Carlsen
Etienne Bacrot 
½-½
 Wang Hao
Anish Giri 
1-0
 Viktor Bologan
Round 7: Monday, July 30, 14:00h
Anish Giri 
½-½
 Hikaru Nakamura
Viktor Bologan 
½-½
 Etienne Bacrot 
Wang Hao 
0-1
 Magnus Carlsen
Round 8: Tuesday, July 31, 14:00h
Hikaru Nakamura  
0-1
 Wang Hao
Magnus Carlsen 
1-0
 Viktor Bologan
Etienne Bacrot 
0-1
 Anish Giri
Round 9: Wednesday, August 1, 14:00h
Etienne Bacrot 
   Hikaru Nakamura
Anish Giri 
   Magnus Carlsen
Viktor Bologan 
   Wang Hao
Round 10: Thursday, August 2, 11:00h
Hikaru Nakamura 
   Viktor Bologan
Wang Hao 
   Anish Giri
Magnus Carlsen 
   Etienne Bacrot 

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.

Copyright ChessBase


Discussion and Feedback Join the public discussion or submit your feedback to the editors


Discuss

Rules for reader comments

 
 

Not registered yet? Register