Classic: Carlsen beats Keymer, Nepo and Firouzja advance

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
5/13/2024 – Right after obtaining an impressive triumph at the Superbet Rapid & Blitz Tournament in Poland, Magnus Carlsen defeated Vincent Keymer to reach the Grand Final of the Classic. The Norwegian will now get two rest days before facing the winner of the lower bracket, where Keymer, Jan-Krzysztof Duda and Alireza Firouzja remain in contention. | Photo: / Thomas Tischio

ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024 ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024

It is the program of choice for anyone who loves the game and wants to know more about it. Start your personal success story with ChessBase and enjoy the game even more.


A champion’s way to get two days off

Two players who participated in the Superbet Poland event reached the winners’ bracket final of Division I in the Classic: Magnus Carlsen and Vincent Keymer. Carlsen entered the match right after claiming an astounding tournament victory in Warsaw, while Keymer had ended the event with six losses in a row to finish in second-to-last place. The online match also favoured Carlsen, though Keymer gave a tough fight.

After playing three draws, Carlsen defeated Keymer with black in the fourth encounter, avoiding a potential Armageddon decider and securing a spot in the tournament’s Grand Final. Talking to Tania Sachdev after his (double) victory, Carlsen noted that getting two days off was a big motivation for him, as the Grand Final will take place on Wednesday, once the winner of the losers’ bracket is decided.

The semifinal and final of the lower bracket will take place on Monday. Jan-Krzysztof Duda and Alireza Firouzja will face off in the semis to decide who plays Keymer in the final. Duda and Firouzja knocked out Ian Nepomniachtchi and Denis Lazavik, respectively. While Firouzja got a clear 2-0 victory over his young rival, Duda defeated Nepo in the sudden-death decider.

Much like Carlsen, Duda came from having a strong final-day performance in Warsaw, as he scored 6½/9 points on Sunday to climb to sole third place in the standings.

Keymer 0 - 1 Carlsen

All games - Division I

Bracket - Division I

Division II: Oparin and MVL in the winners’ bracket final

Grigoriy Oparin and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave defeated Levon Aronian and Daniil Dubov respectively to reach the final of the winners’ bracket in Division II. While MVL drew with black in Armageddon to knock Dubov down to the lower bracket, Oparin defeated Aronian ‘in regulation’ by a 2½-1½ score.

In game 2 of the semis, Aronian’s innocent-looking 21...0-0 was a one-move blunder.

Black is actually clearly better here, as threatening mate-in-one with 21...Qe5 is a very strong continuation — e.g. 22.Qxc6+ Kf8 (not 22...Kf7 due to 23.Qd5+ forcing a queen swap) 23.Qxa8+ Kg7 24.Qxh8+ Kxh8 25.Kg2 (escaping the checkmate on h2), and despite having two rooks for the queen White is completely busted.

None of this appeared on the board, though, as Aronian’s 21...0-0 was too much of a finesse, which in fact led to a quick resignation after 22.Qb3+

A killer fork, as Black will lose the all-important knight on f3.

After losing on Sunday, Aronian and Dubov will face incredibly strong opponents in the lower bracket, where elite GMs Vidit Gujrathi and Wesley So continue fighting to reach the division’s Grand Final. Both Vidit and So scored 1½-½ wins on the tournament’s fifth day of action, against Sam Sevian and Andrey Esipenko respectively.

All games - Division II

Bracket - Division II

Division III

Nils Grandelius and Dmitry Andreikin reached the winners’ bracket final in Division III, while Tuan Minh Le, Adam Kozak, Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son and Karthikeyan Murali remain in contention in the losers’ bracket.

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.
Discussion and Feedback Submit your feedback to the editors