Grenke Classic: Rapport scores 2/2, now a half point behind Carlsen

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
3/31/2024 – Magnus Carlsen continues to be the sole leader at the Grenke Chess Classic in Karlsruhe. Second-placed Richard Rapport closed the gap between him and the leader to a half point after collecting back-to-back victories on Saturday. Maxime Vachier-Lagrave stands in sole third place a full point behind Rapport, and is set to face the Romanian representative in the penultimate round. | Photo: Angelika Valkova

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.


Rapport beats Ding and Keymer

Thursday was a disastrous day for Richard Rapport. After grabbing the lead in the first four rounds of play, the Hungarian-born grandmaster suffered two consecutive losses in rounds 5 and 6 to find himself a full point behind the new sole leader, Magnus Carlsen. Carlsen, as has often happened in the past, started slowly, but consecutive wins on the third day of action (over Vincent Keymer and Rapport himself) allowed him to take pole position.

Friday was a rest day for the players in the main event of the Grenke Chess Festival, which apparently helped Rapport to regroup and recover his form. On Saturday, he defeated Keymer and Ding Liren to go into the final two rounds of the double round-robin a half point behind Carlsen, who beat Daniel Fridman and drew Ding in rounds 7 and 8.

As per the regulations, those placed first and second at the end of the double round-robin will face off in a match for tournament victory on Monday. While Carlsen is almost certain to reach the final, Rapport still needs to work hard on Sunday, as he is paired up against third-placed Maxime Vachier-Lagrave in round 9 — the Frenchman stands a full point behind Rapport after signing two draws (in two sharp battles) on Sunday.

Standings after round 8

Round 9 pairings

  • Ding Liren v. Daniel Fridman
  • Magnus Carlsen v. Vincent Keymer
  • Richard Rapport v. Maxime Vachier-Lagrave

Round 10 pairings

  • Daniel Fridman v. Richard Rapport
  • Maxime Vachier-Lagrave v. Magnus Carlsen
  • Vincent Keymer v. Ding Liren

Rapport 1 - 0 Ding

Analysis by Klaus Besenthal

Keymer 0 - 1 Rapport

Analysis by Klaus Besenthal

All games


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.