Classic: Lazavik beats Nepo

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
5/11/2024 – The knockout phase of the Classic kicked off on Friday. Division I saw Magnus Carlsen, Jan-Krzysztof Duda, Vincent Keymer and Denis Lazavik advancing in the winners’ bracket. Lazavik got the better of Ian Nepomniachtchi — though Nepo is much higher rated than his young opponent, it is by this point not a big surprise that the 17-year-old beat a nominally stronger player. | Photo:

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Working overtime

Four out of the ten players participating in the Superbet Poland event in Warsaw are also playing the online Classic. Three of them made it to Division I — Magnus Carlsen, Vincent Keymer and Jan-Krzysztof Duda — while Anish Giri is playing in Division III.

It is now known that the organizers of both events decided to change their usual starting times to allow players to participate in the two tournaments. Seeing top GMs playing online during strong over-the-board competitions has become more and more normal. Apparently, they are not bothered by exhaustion — and perhaps playing online even helps them to unwind after an emotionally draining session of OTB chess.

All three players participating in Division I of the online event won their matches on Friday. Carlsen and Keymer got quick 2½-½ victories over Velimir Ivic and Alexey Sarana respectively, while Duda defeated Alireza Firouzja in the Armageddon decider.

Duda started his match against Firouzja with a victory and then missed winning chances in games 2 and 3. In a must-win situation, Firouzja managed to score in game 4, as a nice tactical trick put an end to the game.

29...d4 does not gain a piece at once, as White counts with 30.Nc4, attacking the queen on e5. However, after the good-looking 30...Ng4+, White is completely busted.

Duda resigned, since 31.Kg1 fails to 31...dxc3 32.Nxe5 Nxe5. The Polish star went on to win the Armageddon decider with the white pieces, thus setting up a semifinal match against Keymer on Saturday. Carlsen is set to face Lazavik in the other semi.

All games - Division I

Bracket - Division I

Division II: Caruana, Dominguez and So in losers’ bracket

As we have seen in previous tournaments of the Champions Chess Tour, Divisions II and III also feature a number of top grandmasters. At the Classic, the likes of Fabiano Caruana, Wesley So, Leinier Dominguez, Vidit Gujrathi and Levon Aronian all qualified to Division II. Moreover, many of them were defeated on Friday to get knocked down to the losers’ bracket.

Dominguez, for example, was defeated by German GM Dmitrij Kollars in Armageddon.

Kollars found the winning 24...Rg4+ in the sudden-death decider, and after 25.hxg4 fxg4 26.Rg1 gxf3+, there is no way to defend the white king without making major concessions.

Dominguez resigned the game five moves later. The Cuban-born grandmaster will face Vidit in the losers’ bracket on Saturday.

Also defeated in the first round of Division II were Caruana, So and Sam Sevian.

All games - Division II

Bracket - Division II

Division III

The likes of Anish Giri, Teimour Radjabov and Dmitry Andreikin are in contention in Division III. Replay all the games of the division on

Bracket - Division III


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.
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