Chessable Masters: Carlsen beats Lazavik, advances to Grand Final

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
2/5/2024 – Magnus Carlsen advanced to the Grand Final of the Chessable Masters by beating young star Denis Lazavik in a hard-fought match. Lazavik will face either Alireza Firouzja or Ian Nepomniachtchi in the final of the losers’ bracket to decide who gets to challenge Carlsen in Wednesday’s deciding match. | Photo: / Thomas Tischio

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Division I: “He could have won”

After beating Denis Lazavik by the smallest of margins, Magnus Carlsen complimented his young opponent’s play, noting that the 17-year-old is likely to become a top player after gaining some more experience.

Carlsen had won the first game and seen Lazavik bouncing back in game 3. Nerves played a big role in game 4, as the contenders entered a sharp queen endgame with only seconds on their clocks (and 2-second increments per move).

At this point, after Lazavik’s 47.e6+, the engines give a 0.00 evaluation. However, eight moves later, the youngster cracked under pressure and faltered with 55.Qe5

Allowing the queen trade gives Black a winning pawn endgame. Instead, 55.Kh6 would have kept the game going — surely a very difficult move to find under the circumstances.

Carlsen will now get two rest days before playing the Grand Final on Wednesday. Lazavik will face either Ian Nepomniachtchi or Alireza Firouzja, who both won their quarter-final matches in the losers’ bracket on Sunday.

Division I bracket

Chessable Masters 2024

While Firouzja defeated Jose Martinez 1½-½ after scoring in his game with the white pieces, Nepomniachtchi saw Vladimir Fedoseev tying the score after Nepo had won the first game, thus taking the match to Armageddon. Nepo won the decider with the white pieces to remain in contention.

GM Karsten Müller analysed the first game of the exciting Fedoseev v. Nepo match.

All games - Division I

Division II: Keymer and Aronian reach winners’ bracket final

Right after beating Hikaru Nakamura, Vladislav Artemiev was defeated by Levon Aronian in the semi-finals of the winners’ bracket. Nakamura, by the way, was knocked out of the competition, as he was defeated by Rauf Mamedov in the losers’ bracket.

Facing Aronian in the final of the upper bracket will be Vincent Keymer, who beat Benjamin Bok in a thrilling match that went to sudden-death. Keymer played a nice final move with white in the Armageddon.

Bok resigned the game — and the match — after 26.Ne6+, with a discovered attack against the black queen on d6.

Division II bracket

Chessable Masters 2024

All games - Division II

Division III: Sarana and Grischuk in the final

Alexey Sarana and Alexander Grischuk advanced to the final of the winners’ bracket in Division III after beating David Paravyan and Eltaj Safarli respectively. Five draws — including one with black in Armageddon — allowed Grischuk to reach the final.

Paravyan, Safarli, Bardiya Daneshvar and Oleksandr Bortnyk remain in contention in the losers’ bracket.

All games - Division III

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Carlos Colodro is a Hispanic Philologist from Bolivia. He works as a freelance translator and writer since 2012. A lot of his work is done in chess-related texts, as the game is one of his biggest interests, along with literature and music.