Khanty Final Round: No Miracle

by Alejandro Ramirez
5/26/2015 – Only a miraculous series of results would have lost Caruana his qualification, but there was never any danger of this happening as he drew his game, and was even better at some point. Nakamura gave Jakovenko no chance to complicate the situation, and split the point. Those three players shared first, but it's Caruana and Nakamura that put two Americans in the Candidates.

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The fourth and final stage of the 2014-2015 Grand Prix Series. This tournament is specially important as it will determine the winner and runner up of this year, both of which will automatically qualify for the 2015 Candidates Tournament - the winner of that will challenge Magnus Carlsen to the World Championship Match! The tournament is taking place in Khanty-Mansiysk, Ugra, Russia from May 13 to May 27.

Final Round

Round 11 – May 26 2015, 14:00h
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
½-½
Gelfand, Boris 2744
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
½-½
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Giri, Anish 2776
½-½
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
½-½
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Svidler, Peter 2734
1-0
Jobava, Baadur 2699
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
½-½
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754

Daniel King shows the highlights of round 11

The FIDE President making his arrival

Karjakin, Sergey ½-½ Gelfand, Boris
A strange line of the Najdorf... it is not common that in this Sicilian black ends up with an isolated queen's pawn! Gelfand's compensation for this structural weakness came in the way of good piece play and swift development. Karjakin had trouble coordinating his pieces, and it was never natural for him to develop. The game was agreed drawn with a dynamic balance on the board.

Nakamura, Hikaru ½-½ Jakovenko, Dmitry
Everyone's focus was clearly on this game. Jakovenko needed to win to guarantee his spot on the Candidates, while a draw required a series of highly unlikely and borderline miraculous results for him to qualify. Nakamura came into the game with a very sound and clear strategy: play solid, trade everything, draw. This is basically what happened in the game as Jakovenko simply could not create enough complications.

It all came down to this game, but Jakovenko could not create real complications

Giri, Anish ½-½ Caruana, Fabiano
One of the results that needed to go Jakovenko's way for the Russian to qualify was for Caruana to lose. That did not come close to happening - even though Giri's position was slightly preferable from the opening, his attack on the kingside initiated with a quick g4 advance backfired badly. Caruana had the much better position, he decided to play it safe and draw the game, securing his place.

Giri tried to create fireworks in the last round, but they did not go so well

Dominguez, Leinier ½-½ Grischuk, Alexander
The Sveshnikov Sicilian was a variation that had a surge of popularity in the early 2000's, but has since fallen out of fashion. Gelfand still uses it regularly, but besides him it is not a common guest in top level tournaments. Grischuk employed it today and obtained a relatively easy draw. Dominguez's attack on the kingside with queen and knight was only enough for a perpetual.

Grischuk tied with many others in sixth place

Svidler, Peter 1-0 Jobava, Baadur
The only decisive game of the round. Jobava had a bad position from a dubious variation in the French, and Svidler's positional advantage kept growing until they reached an endgame with the Russian player being simply up a pawn. Jobava certainly had good drawing chances with precise play, but that was very difficult to achieve. After a couple of mistakes he wound up in a completely hopeless position and was forced to resign.

Jobava finished 11th, with four losses, one win and many draws

Tomashevsky, Evgeny ½-½ Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime
If anything, this game is a metaphor for how Tomashevsky's tournament went. He came in as the leader of the Grand Prix, and even had a good start. He kept chances to the bitter end, but it simply was not enough. Even today, had a perfect sequence of results happened, he still could have qualified. At the end, he was not close to competing in the Candidates via direct qualification.

In the game Tomashevksy had an advantage from the opening. He managed to win not one, but two pawns, and yet MVL's pressure with his major pieces was very annoying. White had trouble bringing his rook into the game nad fending off the black pieces. He gave up a pawn in a last ditch effort to win a 4v3 Queen endgame, but he was unsuccessful after more than 100 moves.

A very disappointing 10th for Tomashevsky

As usual tomorrow we will bring you the final standings of the Grand Prix, a recap of the tournament and photos from the closing ceremony. For now, it is clear that both Caruana and Nakamura will be representing America in the 2015 Candidates Tournament!

Standings

Round Eleven Games

Select from the dropdown menu to replay the games

Photos from the official website by Kirill Merkurev

Schedule

Round 01 – May 14 2015, 15:00h
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
½-½
Gelfand, Boris 2744
Jobava, Baadur 2699
0-1
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
½-½
Svidler, Peter 2734
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
½-½
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
1-0
Giri, Anish 2776
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
½-½
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Round 02 – May 15 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744
½-½
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Giri, Anish 2776
½-½
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
1-0
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Svidler, Peter 2734
½-½
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
½-½
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
½-½
Jobava, Baadur 2699
Round 03 – May 16 2015, 15:00h
Jobava, Baadur 2699
½-½
Gelfand, Boris 2744
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
½-½
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
1-0
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
0-1
Svidler, Peter 2734
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
½-½
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
½-½
Giri, Anish 2776
Round 04 – May 17 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744
½-½
Giri, Anish 2776
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
½-½
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Svidler, Peter 2734
½-½
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
½-½
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
0-1
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Jobava, Baadur 2699
½-½
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Round 05 – May 19 2015, 15:00h
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
½-½
Gelfand, Boris 2744
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
½-½
Jobava, Baadur 2699
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
1-0
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
1-0
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
½-½
Svidler, Peter 2734
Giri, Anish 2776
½-½
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Round 06 – May 20 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744
½-½
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Svidler, Peter 2734
1-0
Giri, Anish 2776
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
½-½
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
0-1
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Jobava, Baadur 2699
½-½
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
0-1
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Round 07 – May 21 2015, 15:00h
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
½-½
Gelfand, Boris 2744
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
½-½
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
½-½
Jobava, Baadur 2699
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
1-0
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
Giri, Anish 2776
1-0
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
1-0
Svidler, Peter 2734
Round 08 – May 22 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744
1-0
Svidler, Peter 2734
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
½-½
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
½-½
Giri, Anish 2776
Jobava, Baadur 2699
0-1
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
1-0
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
0-1
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Round 09 – May 24 2015, 15:00h
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
½-½
Gelfand, Boris 2744
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
½-½
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
½-½
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Giri, Anish 2776
1-0
Jobava, Baadur 2699
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
½-½
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
Svidler, Peter 2734
0-1
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Round 10 – May 25 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744
½-½
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
½-½
Svidler, Peter 2734
Jobava, Baadur 2699
1-0
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
½-½
Giri, Anish 2776
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
½-½
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
1-0
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Round 11 – May 26 2015, 14:00h
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
½-½
Gelfand, Boris 2744
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
½-½
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Giri, Anish 2776
½-½
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
½-½
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Svidler, Peter 2734
1-0
Jobava, Baadur 2699
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
½-½
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754

Links

The games will be 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 13 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.


Topics Grand Prix, Khanty

Grandmaster Alejandro Ramirez has been playing tournament chess since 1998. His accomplishments include qualifying for the 2004 and 2013 World Cups as well as playing for Costa Rica in the 2002, 2004 and 2008 Olympiads. He currently has a rating of 2583 and is author of a number of popular and critically acclaimed ChessBase-DVDs.
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malfa malfa 5/30/2015 09:23
Aaron06grad, you literally make me ROTFL when you talk about twisted interpretations, since that is exactly what *you* have been doing here from scratch! One last example: your personal use of the word "modern": FYI, modern age in history conventionally starts very much long before 1962. As regards the rest, I already made my point, there is no need to reply once more to your farnetications.
Aaron06grad Aaron06grad 5/30/2015 01:13
Malfa, I am not going to dignify your argument with an answer, its not worth my time. (But needless to say, I can prove that Curacao '62 was nothing but a useless piece of cheating.) The author is correct, two American players will be in the Candidates tournament. Perhaps it was worded in a clumsy fashion, but that is clearly the author's intent. And stop trying to accuse Caruana of being paid to play for the US. There is no proof for such a malevolent accusation. And I never said legitmately qualify, I said legitimately APPEAR, which barring some accident, is what will happen. It may not have happened yet, but it is a foregone conclusion. Wishing for it not to happen is pretty sad in my opinion, and shows how desperately biased you are. But wishing does not make it so, as it is a virtual certainty at this point. I am not the one playing with past and future, you are. The fact that Nakamura and Caruana have qualified now means that both players will be in the Candidates by which time they will both be playing under the US flag. At that time, they are physically "put" in the tournament, not before. The author did not say that two Americans qualified, he said that two Americans are thus "put" in the Candidates (a reference to the future, not the past). Perhaps using a past-tense verb to describe a future event is inaccurate, but that is clearly the author's intent based on context. You, however, are ignoring context to ridicule that author's statement, which is factually, if not grammatically correct. It must be sad to have to resort to picking apart language just to try to descredit the author. English is after all, his second language. I learned this when I was introduced to GM Ramirez at the the Sinquefield Cup. The fact that you want to descredit the statement speaks volumes about your intentions. Stop trying to denigrate the achievements of others and attack grammatical style and you will see that this is good for chess, especially in the US, which could use the publicity to promote the game where interest has languished. This as opposed to countries like Russia, where chess has always done well, and from where I am sure their will be other qualifiers, as there has always been. 1962 (53 years ago), is not modern times, none of these players were even born yet, not even Gelfand. Lastly, you say you accuse nobody, and then make the claim that Fabiano was bought by the US Federation. If that's not an accusation, I don't know what is! It is correct information to say they will be in the candidates, which is what the author said, not "qualified for the candidates". Read the last line of the article "For now, it is clear that both Caruana and Nakamura will be representing America in the 2015 Candidates Tournament!". This is what the author is saying, not your twisted interpretation of it.
malfa malfa 5/29/2015 12:40
A7fecd1676b88, you are right, my fault (I am rather older than "every Russian schoolboy", so my memory is not as precise...), yet some mirror-climbing persists on claiming now that since Curacao 1962 was not a legitimate tournament (LOL!) then "the fact is that two Americans appearing in a Candidates has never legitimately happened in modern times". As usual, somebody plays with past and future at his leisure: does this mean that never two Americans did legitimately qualify for a Candidates tournament? Come on!
malfa malfa 5/29/2015 12:03
Pure nonsense, I think I have dedicated well enough of my patience to your ignorant trolling.
Aaron06grad Aaron06grad 5/29/2015 03:34
Malfa, no it is clearly YOU that is misinformed about Chess if you think that the 1962 candidates' tournament was a legitimate tournament. It might as well have been called the Russian rubber-stamp because of the collusion between the top Russian players. The other players never stood a chance, and Fischer called them out on it. The tournament could just as well have never happened, and the players involved should have been punished/fined for cheating. 1962 Curacao was a farce, not a tournament. The fact is that two Americans appearing in a Candidates has never legitimately happened in modern times.
A7fecd1676b88 A7fecd1676b88 5/29/2015 01:48
Pal Benko played under an international flag, not the US flag, in the 1959 Candidates.
Every Russian Schoolboy knows this.

malfa malfa 5/28/2015 10:51
BTW, Aaron06grad, screaming that it has never happened before that in a Candidates tournament there will be two players with American flags next to their names is a plainly false statement: does anyone remember a certain Pal Benko representing USA along with Fischer in the Candidates tournaments of Yugoslavia 1959 and Curacao 1962? At least study your own chess history, if you want to somehow look competent!
malfa malfa 5/28/2015 12:34
@Aaron06grad, I accuse nobody: I simply observe that *today* there is an Italian flag near the winner of Grand Prix, so correct information should take this into account, exactly as *tomorrow* it is possible that a US flag will label the new world champion. Just don't play around the simple fact that what counts in the records of sports history is the flag under which an athlet achieves his results, not where he was born. Otherwise why so much fondness in buying back Fabiano?
Aaron06grad Aaron06grad 5/28/2015 11:40
Malfa, I think it was highly disingenuous to accuse others of nitpicking meaningless detail, when that is what you began by doing. And no, I do not agree with your assessment of tenses. Sentences cannot have tenses, only verbs can. The verb "put" does not change the tense of the object "two Americans". However, the fact that the "candidates" tournament is being referred to gives indication that we are referring to the future (because this tournament takes place many months from now). This is what we call a contextual clue that qualifies the term "Americans". The essential fact remains the same, there will be two players with American flags next to their names, WHICH HAS NEVER HAPPENED BEFORE at a candidates tournament. It makes very little difference where they were born or raised or coached or currently reside. What matters is that these two players have chosen to adopt the flag of the US. (After all, we are a nation of immigrants!) And since so many chess events involve representing a national flag (e.g. Chess Olympiad, World Teams) the chess world takes notice when top players change federations, and rightly so. I say cheers to Caruana, the newest representative of US Chess.
malfa malfa 5/28/2015 10:27
@genem: interesting statistics, as far as it concerns the unusual percentage of white wins. One possibile explaination is that specific preparation as White was of paramount importance for this event, since the majority of the players, even the most aggressive ones, were just content with drawing as Black. Yet when we come down to individual results, for certain players it happens exactly the opposite: both Caruana and Toma, for example, won the majority of their full points as Black (Fabiano even suffered his only defeat as White), so we should look elsewhere for reasons :-/
genem genem 5/27/2015 09:37
65% draws. Normal.
65% of wins were by White. Higher than normal.
malfa malfa 5/27/2015 08:33
@Aighearach: you may argue as pedantically as you like with my supposed pedanticism, yet you miss my point, or maybe not, you just get it from a different perspective, anyway it is utterly unimportant.
Aighearach Aighearach 5/27/2015 07:41
@malfa hilarious, but please do the native English speakers a favor, and don't try to pedantically correct others. Especially when they are correct, and you're just exhibiting low comprehension.

"Those three players shared first, but it's Caruana and Nakamura that put two Americans in the Candidates"

You are correct that this sentence "is past tense" however you missed that it is the word "put" that is in the past tense. The words "that put" establish that the action, the putting, was completed in the past. You're attempting to apply it to the other parts of the sentence. That is incorrect. It is only the verb that is in the past there. The words "in the Candidates" is primarily in the future. So the nationality, "American," is clearly in the future tense.

However, even if your false pedanticism didn't fall on its face on the claimed merits, it would be absurd and incorrect anyways, because the primary meaning of American, or any description of nationality, is to describe the nationality of the person, not the nationality of the chess club they play for. So even while playing under the Italian flag, he was already an American, and any tournament he was in could be accurately described as having at least one American player; even if it was also correct to say, "There are no Americans in this tournament." However, responding to either statement by claiming it is incorrect would itself be incorrect. Both statements are true. This is why, when written by native English speakers, it would be more normal to say either, "putting two American citizens in the Candidates," or "putting two players representing America in the Candidates."

There are so many different ways of phrasing things in English, it is really a bad idea to attempt to correct the form of a statement. You might have not understood a differently phrased idea. You might also accidentally mistake a popular "style guide" for actual "English rules," which they certainly are not. Teachers may sometimes mislead students into believing that the school's preferred style guide is a rule book, but that will be corrected later if they seek advanced study.

PS: Pedanticism is most certainly a "real" English word, because it has a root already known to English and has suffixes properly applied. It was a real English word even before I made it up!
malfa malfa 5/27/2015 07:29
@Aighearach, I do not hate America at all, though it is full of ignorants like you who know absolutely nothing outside the place they live, not to mention the fact that America is made of Brazilians, Chileans, Canadians and so on besides of U.S.A. citizens. FYI, however Caruana speaks Italian, which is his mother tongue, simply it is not his preferred language, and what you personally think about birth nationality counts exactly for nothing with respect to international laws and rights.
Aighearach Aighearach 5/27/2015 07:12
LOL I'm just you people who think Florida is one of the Papal States and hate America so bad you have to invent new "no true Scotsman" fallacies to support your world view. I'll give you a hint, though; if you're born in the US, you grow up in the US, and you're still a US citizen, you're not half anything, you're American. We don't play those weird games where not everybody is even allowed a nationality! I personally thought the idea of denying a person their birth nationality was considered an abuse of human rights; but, apparently European chess players aren't big on human rights. Especially if the humans have the poor taste to be born Americans, right?

He doesn't even speak Italian, there was never any doubt.

And no, no matter how hard you hate America, Florida won't become a Papal State to make your hate whole.
malfa malfa 5/27/2015 06:08
@Aaron06grad, the sentence "Those three players shared first, but it's Caruana and Nakamura that put two Americans in the Candidates" at the beginning of the article is past tense, so please go back to study grammar and spare us further inconsistent comments, thank you.
Aaron06grad Aaron06grad 5/27/2015 04:29
It seems to me that the majority of the comments being made in response to this article are reflective of the biases of the commenters (probably due to nationality, or sheer hatred of the US). The fact remains that two players will be playing under the US flag at the candidates tournament, which is unprecedented. Yes it may be claimed that they have split allegiances, but I think that it matters most what flag THEY choose to play under. Also, the author of the article- GM Ramirez- is a perfect example of a foreign player who came to US but represents the country admirably (he was born in Costa Rica).
And no Aristarchus, there is no doublespeak on the reporting. He lost the game because he is still Italian AT PRESENT. When he goes to the candidates, he will be playing under the American flag. Both reports are thus accurate. Look at the wording in this article, the author never says Caruana is American at present, but only that he WILL BE by the time of the candidates. And malfa, "current chess citizenship" is irrelevant. That may be what someone commented, but it is not what Ramirez (the author) said. The author only referred to his allegiance at the candidates, i.e. in the future. Go back and read the article if you don't believe me.
daftarche daftarche 5/27/2015 12:51
fischer had a bad score against spassky but before his match with him, he was already the best chess player in the world. nakamura is improving. he showed himself to be a solid chess player but carlsen is improving too. he had an impressive victory in gashimov memorial.
value value 5/27/2015 12:37
Have I missed something? Caruana should play for Italy not The US
malfa malfa 5/27/2015 11:28
One last remark @firestorm: the fact that Caruana was born in America, though true, has no relationship with his current "chess citizenship", while the statement that "he has recently transferred back to the States" is plainly false: as I said, from the standpoint of FIDE membership, the application procedure is still in progress, while from the standpoint of real life this is by no means an indication that Caruana will also go back to live in the USA: as far as it is known, he could equally go on residing somewhere in Europe, as he and his family have always being doing since he left the USA, for no less reason that he received in Europe his major chess training and that his current coach lives there.
malfa malfa 5/27/2015 11:20
@Raymond, @Oscar, @Karbuncle

Of course I perfectly know of Caruana's recent choice to play for USA, that he was raised in the USA and that he preferably speaks American English. However, please note:

1. He has double citizenship, both American and Italian, so it is incorrect to label him as simply "American" (or, the other way round, simply "Italian", as many chess writers have done until he made his decision public);

2. However, from the standpoint of "FIDE citizenship", *currently* he is still playing for Italy, and this is a matter of fact, not of ignorance.

3. It is also true that, since the rules of FIDE allow a player to change his chess federation like his wet socks, again in terms of "FIDE citizenship" exclusively we are going to witness that the first Italian winner of the Grand Prix series will be an American challenger in the Candidates Tournament of the same World Championship cycle, which to me is total nonsense.
Willem Briemen Willem Briemen 5/27/2015 10:49
After the game is finished the king of the winning side is usually put on e4 for some technical reason. That explains Svidlers last move.
DJones DJones 5/27/2015 10:26
For those who think Nakamura has no shot. He has lost only four classical games since last October. He lost 1 game of 33 in the GP series and it was using a Richter-Veresov attack with white. He has won four of his last four events, crossed 2800 in time for the june FIDE list and earned a candidates slot. This is not the Nakamura of 2014 or before. He is becoming a complete player who can play any position for however long is necessary. It is next to impossible to prepare for him because he will play any parent class of openings and rare sidelines that others evaluate as junk but he makes work. I am not saying he is ready to go toe to toe with Carlsen but this is not the Nakamura who went 0-11 against Carlsen. This new player is a man possessed.
BeachBum2 BeachBum2 5/27/2015 08:20
I think it is people like Jobava that keep chess at least somewhat fun (I mean - for people outside a very few thousands GM level players). If he starts playing "your regular top GM boring chess" it will be less fun for most spectators…

And winning… no human can challenge computers, so it is much less important who is "best human player". Anyway - it will be Magnus for another 10 years or something… Like Karpov or Kasparov in their time…
Aaron06grad Aaron06grad 5/27/2015 08:12
A7 I disagree with your assessment of Nakamura's and Caruana's chances against Carlsen in a hypothetical match-up. First, Caruana has beaten Carlsen more times than perhaps any other player in the past 2 years. (Most notably at the Sinquefield Cup of 2014, which I attended). That makes Caruana, statistically speaking, the player with the greatest chance of defeating Carlsen at present. And as for Nakamura, he may not have any classical wins versus Carlsen, but then neither did Fischer against Spassky prior to the Fischer-Spassky 1972 match, yet Fischer won (two matches). Spassky's record was pretty good against Fischer prior to that match, and yet Spassky went down in flames in a way that the chess world did not entirely predict. What was so noteworthy (and newsworthy) about the Fischer-Spassky match was the Cold War subtext, not the so-called inevitably of Fischer's win, which was far from inevitable before the match. And yes, it does mean something that two Americans are in the candidates, because it has never happened for the US before, EVER. As opposed to countries like Russia, whose chess fans can almost always rely on the fact that not merely one or two Russian players are in the Candidates, but quite often three or four.
Karbuncle Karbuncle 5/27/2015 06:55
To those making ignorant statements about 'two Americans':

BOTH Nakamura AND Caruana were RAISED in America. You watch an interview with either one of them and you'll know by the accent where they are from.
Matt79 Matt79 5/27/2015 04:35
66. Ke4 in Svidler-Jobava makes no sense. Something's wrong here. I'm hearing that it was 66. Kd6 and for some reason there's a mistake in the writing.
A7fecd1676b88 A7fecd1676b88 5/27/2015 04:23
"put two Americans in the Candidates"

Like that means something? Neither American has a realistic chance against Carlsen, who is playing at a much higher level. When Fischer challenged Spassky in 1972, it was a meaningful event precisely because Fischer could win.
DBRussell DBRussell 5/27/2015 01:57
Congrats to the winners and qualifiers!
It's looking to be a great Candidates tournament.

Tomashevsky was in a great position entering this final GP but alas he succumbed to pressure. Some of his later games lasted very long but in the end he couldn't find the right moves to compensate for his middle of the tournament bad performance. And he didn't have a bad start!

Jakovenko finished shared 1st with the most wins and played overall very well although his chances weren't the greatest after the first 2 GP performances. I really like his style, he can be a very dangerous player albeit a little irregular with his results. Congrats for his result here! :)

I really haven't watched much chess from these 2 before this GP series but I was pleasantly surprised with what I saw and I hope they have better GP's in the future and qualify.

Lot's of people playing below their best chess: MVL, Karjakin, Giri, Grischuk, even Svidler (he had a great 2013 Candidates, what a dramatic event that was!).

Gelfand and Dominguez are very close in strenght, solid, can even put a great fight against fairly higher rated players but don't win that often even against players of similar strenght. They hold their own but I just don't see any up-evolution for them (Gelfand for obvious reasons) rating-wise or whatever. Dominguez had a great shot at winning this and forget about his other horrible GP performances aside and he couldn't.

Jobava it's a constant despite it's "creative" openings and moves. Odd wins here and there won't ever put him in the contention for anything great. I know he already expressed that he is not obssessive in winning and shares the olympic spirit "to participate" but come on... I feel he has the potential to greatly step up his game. He doesn't exactly have bad preparation he just goes for offbeat openings and loses many games because of this when he could go for reasonable openings and obtain safer positions and still test his "brilliancy"...

Nakamura inches closer to Sauron and my advice to him is go after Anand and Caruana in the Candidates. Those will be his greatest hurdles and if he can get a good pairing with white in the first couple of games he should immediately put them and the rest of the competition under pressure.

Thanks ChessBase for the wonderful coverage!

Wallace Howard Wallace Howard 5/27/2015 01:05
Nakamura played interesting, double-edged openings (Dragon, Kalashnikov, KID) and still managed not to lose a single game. This was a very impressive display. I'm a bit disappointed that Gelfand couldn't find a way to win, but it was still a nice tournament.
Rama Rama 5/26/2015 11:05
@Oscar Lito M Pablo

He must complete the contract OR $50,000. must be paid to the Italian Chess Federation.
Oscar Lito M Pablo Oscar Lito M Pablo 5/26/2015 10:40
@malfa, @Raymond Labelle - I read that Caruana (although it's expected the FIDE process for his transfer may be completed in September or October) still has to complete his contract with the Italian chess federation until the end of the year. So that means Caruana may be able to contractually or officially represent the U.S. in January 2016.
DJones DJones 5/26/2015 09:48
In all seriousness, congrats to Jakovenko for putting up a stiff fight for qualification and positioning himself as first alternate. Congrats to Nakamura for qualifying for Candidates 2016 using Sicilians, KIDs and Dutch Defense as drawing weapons with black. No one else could imagine that. He lost one game in this GP cycle which is astounding and finished +5 overall over the 33 games. Congrats to Caruana who won the GP overall with clear, cogent and lucid play. His preparation was spot on and his game control was spectacular in all three legs. He also shared first in two of the legs and was the only player to do so. He also finished with +5 overall through this cycle and earned his Candidates berth in style. Congrats to all three of these players for sharing first in the final leg and I hope they enjoy their winnings and the memories of this grueling event series. They can breath now.
Vlad Protasov Vlad Protasov 5/26/2015 09:36
Svidler-Jobava is a draw after 66...Rc4+ according to Nalimov tablebases.
svidoli svidoli 5/26/2015 09:02
Two Americans???
Where?

The power of money...
firestorm firestorm 5/26/2015 09:01
Caruana was born in America, and has recently transferred back to the States. It would be a bit odd to say he's qualified for the candidates as an Italian. Who cares anyway- its good to see him in the candidates, whichever country he chooses to live in.
Raymond Labelle Raymond Labelle 5/26/2015 08:53
Caruana made a public statement that he initiated the procedures to represent the US Chess federation. It is likely that he will represent the United States at the time of the Candidates tournament. He has Italian and US citizenships and thus can choose which of the two countries he represents. I think he even could also represent the country in which he resides, which is Hungary, if I am not mistaken.

However, it is true that the procedures are not yet passed through and that he currently represents Italy. I am not sure how much time it will take for the transfer procedures to be completed, but apparently it could be as soon as September 2015.

You can have details on http://en.chessbase.com/post/caruana-switching-back-to-u-s-a

malfa malfa 5/26/2015 08:34
On what grounds do you state that *two* Americans are in the Candidates? Caruana is *half-*American at best, anyway from the peculiar standpoint of chess nationality he is currently still playing for Italy. Or do you really maintain that the German team is really made of Germans?
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