Norway Chess, Round 9: Caruana beats Carlsen

by Johannes Fischer
6/15/2019 – The Altibox Norway Chess Tournament ended with a rematch of the 2018 World Championship duel in London: Fabiano Caruana against Magnus Carlsen. But this time Caruana won. In the classical game, Caruana missed the win in a complicated position but in the Armageddon game he outplayed the world champion. Carlsen had already won the tournament on Thursday and in the end finished with 13½ out of 18 points. Levon Aronian and Yu Yangyi followed with 10½ points each, but thanks to a better tie-break Aronian finished second. | Photo: Lennart Ootes /

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Altibox Norway Chess, Round 9

In their World Championship match 2018 in London Carlsen and Caruana drew all their twelve classical games but then Carlsen won the rapid tie-break 3:0. The classical game of the Norway Chess Tournament between Caruana and Carlsen also ended in a draw though Caruana missed a win in a complicated position with little time left on the clock.


With this Carlsen continued his streak of unbeaten games with classical time-control: he did not lose a single one of his last 68 games. But in the Armageddon game Caruana ended a streak of Carlsen: in the previous eight rounds of the Norway Chess Tournament Carlsen had to play six Armageddon games which he all won, but in his seventh and last Armageddon he lost against Caruana.

After an unorthodox opening Caruana had a slight advantage which he was able to increase and to convert to a full point.


Fabiano Caruana, Magnus Carlsen

Fabiano Caruana vs Magnus Carlsen | Photo: Lennart Ootes

Three of the four other matches were also decided in Armageddon. Yu Yangyi scored the only win in classical chess and won with White against Shakhriyar Mamedyarov.


In their classical game Vishy Anand and Levon Aronian made an unspectacular draw which was followed by an interesting draw in the Armageddon. This draw with Black gave Aronian 1½ points and second place in the tournament — he had the same number of points as Yu Yangyi but the better tie-break.


Altibox Norway Chess 2019

The playing hall | Photo: Lennart Ootes

Wesley So and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave played an unspectacular draw in their classical encounter and then So won the Armageddon game, in which Vachier-Lagrave spoiled a big advantage.


Ding Liren and Alexander Grischuk also finished their classical game with a quick and unspectacular draw. In the Armageddon, however, Ding Liren failed to notice a tactical shot in the opening which gave Black an almost winning position. But in the end Grischuk was content with a draw as that was enough to win the Armageddon.


Results of Round 9 - Classical


Results of Round 9 - Armageddon


Final standings

# Name Country Rating Points
1 Magnus Carlsen Norway 2875 13½
2 Levon Aronian Armenia 2752 10½
  Yu Yangyi China 2738 10½
4 Fabiano Caruana USA 2819 10
  Wesley So USA 2754 10
6 Ding Liren China 2754
7 Maxime Vachier-Lagrave France 2779 8
  Viswanathan Anand India 2767 8
9 Shakhriyar Mamedyarov Azerbaijan 2774
  Alexander Grischuk Russia 2775

All games - Classical


All games - Armageddon



Johannes Fischer was born in 1963 in Hamburg and studied English and German literature in Frankfurt. He now lives as a writer and translator in Nürnberg. He is a FIDE-Master and regularly writes for KARL, a German chess magazine focusing on the links between culture and chess. On his own blog he regularly publishes notes on "Film, Literature and Chess".


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