Predictions for round three

by Sagar Shah
9/17/2015 – We are now down to 32 players, 16 encounters, and as the rounds progress the match-ups keep getting closer and tighter. Some of the opponents are so evenly matched that it is no longer easy to choose a favourite. But in this article we do exactly that – give you a description of each pairing and predictions for all 16 matches. Do your views concur with or differ from ours?

ChessBase 14 Download ChessBase 14 Download

Everyone uses ChessBase, from the World Champion to the amateur next door. Start your personal success story with ChessBase 14 and enjoy your chess even more!


Along with the ChessBase 14 program you can access the Live Database of 8 million games, and receive three months of free ChesssBase Account Premium membership and all of our online apps! Have a look today!

More...

 

World Cup

10th September – 5th October

Baku, Azerbaijan

16 predictions for round three

Dmitry Andreikin – Vladimir Kramnik

This has to be the most interesting match of round three. These are the same players who fought it out in the final of World Cup 2013. Kramnik had got the better of Andreikin with a score of 2.5-1.5 in that four-game match. The younger of the two Russians must surely be itching for revenge.

Prediction: Dmitry Andreikin

Anish Giri – Peter Leko

These two are the most solid chess players on the planet currently. Anish hardly ever loses his games and Peter, as we all know, has held his own against the best for many years now. No wonder the match is generating quite some “excitement” in social media.

Prediction: Anish Giri

Teimour Radjabov – Peter Svidler

Anyone can emerge as the winner here. I have a feeling that Svidler was really motivated to do well in the Candidates 2013. He finished third and even beating Magnus in the last round. He got a wild card entry in Candidates 2014 but was unable to impress, finishing seventh out of the eight players. Maybe he has had enough of the dreams of winning the candidates and playing for the highest title. Of course, we cannot forget that in Candidates 2013 it was Radjabov who finished last. But over here the Azeri playing on home turf looks highly motivated, and that is the reason why I would give him an edge over his Russian opponent.

Prediction: Teimour Radjabov

Lu Shanglei – Veselin Topalov

While Lu Shanglei has been in fantastic form with wins over strong players like Alexander Moiseenko and Wang Hao, Topalov is simply a class apart. If the Bulgarian avoids underestimating his Chinese opponent and plays his best chess, then this should be the round where Lu Shanglei’s World Cup campaign comes to an end.

Prediction: Veselin Topalov

Alexander Areshchenko – Wei Yi

If this were the first round pairing of the World Cup, I would have bet my money on Wei Yi without having any second thoughts about it. But this tournament has shown some chinks in the armour of the Chinese player, who had an extremely tough tiebreak against Yuri Vovk, managing to just scrape through. On the other hand Areshchenko is the man in form, having just eliminated Levon Aronian with a 2-0 in the rapids. The confidence that he must have gained from his round two victory makes him a favourite in this encounter.

Prediction: Alexander Areshchenko

Hikaru Nakamura – Ian Nepomniachtchi

The best part for Ian Nepomniachtchi in this format is that if the classical games end in a draw, he is on terra firma with the rapid and blitz tiebreaks. The sad part for him in round three is that he meets the best rapid and blitz player in the tournament: Hikaru Nakamura. Nakamura is currently having a phenomenal run in the year 2015 and I see no reason why he shouldn’t win this match.

Prediction: Hikaru Nakamura

Here is what Hikaru had to say after his round two victory:

Michael Adams – Leinier Dominguez

Dominguez got a huge scare in round one where he was almost going to be eliminated. But after that he played a very solid match in round two against Melkumyan, winning it 1.5-0.5. On the other hand Michael Adams had to go all the way to the Armageddon game in order to beat Laznicka. Taking into consideration the energy levels of both the players, the Cuban looks like the favourite.

Prediction: Leinier Dominguez

Pavel Eljanov – Alexander Grischuk

This is a match between two players who have taken contrasting routes to reach the third round. Pavel Eljanov crushed both his opponents, Rinat Jumabayev and Alexander Ipatov, with a score of 2-0. On the other hand Alexander Grischuk has struggled like anything. Against a player rated 300 points below him, Yusup Atabayev, he had to go into the blitz to prove his superiority, while against Fedoseev, too, things weren’t smooth at all. But Grischuk has already survived and faced a lot in this tournament, while Eljanov might just be missing that high pressure scenario playing practice.

Prediction: Alexander Grischuk

We must bring to the notice of our readers that the most recently launched ChessBase DVD has been authored by none other than Pavel Eljanov on the Breyer Variation of the Ruy Lopez.

Pavel Eljanov:
The Ruy Lopez Breyer Variation

The Spanish or Ruy Lopez is often called the "Queen of Openings". If you master it you understand a lot about chess.

One of the most popular systems in the Ruy Lopez is the Breyer Variation in which Black retreats his already developed knight from c6 to b8 to relocate it via d7 to better squares. The Hungarian chess master Gyula Breyer recommended this move in 1911, but was far ahead of his time with this idea. It took decades before the power of this move was understood, but now the Breyer variation, which begins with 9...Nb8, is part of the repertoire of many top players, among them the last four World Champions Kasparov, Kramnik, Anand, and Carlsen.

On this DVD, Pavel Eljanov, one of the greatest experts of the Breyer Variation, shows all important lines of this system. In 14 video lectures he gives an overview of the current state of theory. Eljanov shows the moves and explains the ideas behind them while evaluating the arising positions from a black perspective and with a view to the coming middlegame.

  • Video running time: 5 hours 13 min (English)
  • With interactive training including video feedback
  • Training database with 50 essential games and analyses
  • ISBN 978-3-86681-493-6
  • Delivery: download, post
  • Price: €29.90; €25.13 without VAT (for customers outside the EU); $28.41

Dmitry Jakovenko – Vasily Ivanchuk

Tiebreaks in both the games for Jakovenko, and none for Ivanchuk. Somehow, the Russian looks really determined, pumping his fists after his win against Amin Baseem in round two and Iljiushenok in round one. When it’s our beloved Chucky involved in the battle, nothing can be predicted. But here I would put my money on the solid and stable Russian player.

Prediction: Dmitry Jakovenko

Evgeny Tomashevsky – Maxime Vachier Lagrave

Two tremendously experienced players with very little to choose between them. When it comes to rating they are quite even, with Tomashevsky on 2748 and Vachier-Lagrave on 2761. If it comes to performances then Maxime has been doing excellently recently winning the Biel and a joint second at Sinquefield. Tomashevsky is not far behind, as he won the prestigious Russian Championships ahead of the likes of Karjakin and Svidler. If there is something that separates the two players then it is their performances in Baku. MVL beat Ortiz Suarez and Gabriel in Sargissian in two classical games while Tomashevsky had to struggle a bit against Ziaur Rahman and Nguyen Ngoc Truongson in the tie-breaks.

Prediction: Maxime Vachier Lagrave

S. P. Sethuraman – Shakhriyar Mamedyarov

Sethuraman has defied the odds and come out victorious in the first two rounds of this World Cup – and that too without going into the tiebreaks: 2-0 against Sanan Sjugirov and 1.5-0.5 against Pentala Harikrishna. Even though Sethuraman hails from India and I would be supporting him in this match-up, I think against an experienced campaigner like Mamedyarov his chances don’t look very bright. We must remember that in the 2013 World Cup the rising star Wei Yi had beaten Ian Nepomniachtchi and Alexei Shirov in round one and two, only to be stopped by Mamedyarov in the third round.

Prediction: Shakhriyar Mamedyarov

Radoslaw Wojtaszek – Granda Zuniga Julio

The safe thing to do here would be to bet on Radoslaw Wojtaszek, who is the higher rated player. But World Cups are something that brings out the best in Granda Zuniga. You only need to remember the 2013 edition where he knocked out Hrant Melkumyan, Peter Leko and Anish Giri. I would risk it here and put my money on the Peruvian number one.

Prediction: Granda Zuniga

Wesley So – Le Quang Liem

After a struggling in the Sinquefield Cup 2015, Wesley So made a very memorable statement, “This event (Sinquefield Cup) is like a University where I am paying my fees by means of rating points!” The World Cup might be the tournament where he puts his Sinqufield lessons to good use. That being said Le Quang Liem is no pushover. He beat a strong player in the form of Nikita Vitiugov in round two and must be high on confidence. Yet, in this match I would favour Wesley’s chances of winning.

Prediction: Wesley So

Ding Liren – Gadir Guseinov

Gadir Guseinov is playing like a changed man in this event. Maybe it is the responsibility of playing in front of the home crowd that is bringing out the best in him. He has already ousted Maxim Matlakov and David Navara, but what about Ding Liren? The number one Chinese is in a hurry to gain rating points and has already broken into the top ten players of the world. He is surely a favourite in this match-up.

Prediction: Ding Liren

Fabiano Caruana – Anton Kovalyov

Caruana is definitely the favourite here, but Anton Kovalyov has nothing to lose at all. This youngster had already booked a return flight ticket after the first round when he faced Rustam Kasimdzhanov. Kovalyov not only beat him, but also Mareco Sandro in round two. It’s already three days more in Baku than he had expected and he wouldn’t be wanting to leave. But Caruana is really a cut above the rest and surely the favourite by a huge margin.

Prediction: Fabiano Caruana

Sergey Karjakin – Yu Yangyi

This one is a toughie! The only reason why I would choose Karjakin over Yu Yangyi is because the former wants it more to be in the Candidates than the latter. Last year Karjakin finished as the runner-up in Candidates 2014. So close to playing for the highest title. Objectively speaking the match could go either way with Yu Yangyi being a dangerous opponent as he shown to the likes of Vladimir Kramnik and Anish Giri in Qatar 2014!

Prediction: Sergey Karjakin

Photos and information from the official website and their Facebook page

Next Round Pairings

Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
V. Topalov (BUL) 2816
           
Shanglei Lu (CHN) 2599
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Peter Svilder (RUS) 2727
           
Teimour Radjabov (AZE) 2738
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Ding Liren (CHN) 2782
           
Gadir Guseinov (AZE) 2634
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Alexander Areschenko (UKR) 2661
           
Wei Yi (CHN) 2734
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Anish Giri (NED) 2793
           
Peter Leko (HUN) 2707
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Julio Granda Zuniga (PER) 2667
           
Radoslaw Wojtaszek (POL) 2741
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Wesley So (USA) 2773
           
Le Quang Liem (VIE) 2697
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Evgeny Tomashevsky (RUS) 2758
           
Maxime Vachier Lagrave (FRA) 2744
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Hikaru Nakamura (USA) 2814
           
Ian Nepomniachtchi (RUS) 2705
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Michael Adams (ENG) 2742
           
Leiner Dominguez Perez (CUB) 2732
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Alexander Grischuk (RUS) 2771
           
Pavel Eljanov (UKR) 2717
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Dmitry Jakovenko (RUS) 2491
           
Vassily Ivanchuk (UKR) 2726
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Fabiano Caruana (USA) 2808
           
Anton Kovalyov (CAN) 2616
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
S.P. Sethuraman (IND) 2640
           
Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (AZE) 2736
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Vladimir Kramnik (RUS) 2777
           
Dmitry Andreikin (RUS) 2720
 
           
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 Pts
Sergey Karjakin (RUS) 2762
           
Yu Yangyi (CHN) 2721
 
           

Links

The games are being 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 12 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.
 


Sagar Shah is an International Master from India with two GM norms. He is also a chartered accountant and would like to become the first CA+GM of India. He loves to cover chess tournaments, as that helps him understand and improve at the game he loves so much. He is the co-founder of the ChessBase India website.
Discussion and Feedback Join the public discussion or submit your feedback to the editors


Discuss

Rules for reader comments

 
 

Not registered yet? Register

Jorge Shinozaki Jorge Shinozaki 9/20/2015 05:40
Thumbs up! You got 11 correct out of 16 predictions.
I wonder what are your predictions for the round four.
I predict Topalov, Wei Yi, Giri, MVL, Nakamura, Jakovenko, Caruana and Andreikin.
Logos Logos 9/18/2015 05:38
@ hpaul

I think ChessUser21 was joking, making a tongue-in-cheek comment; if not, then I agree with you - his comment was in bad taste.
hpaul hpaul 9/18/2015 03:14
ChessUser21:
" "Some chinks in the armour of the Chinese player" - That's racist!"
Don't be ridiculous. "chinks in the armour" is a perfectly normal and appropriate phrase. It's disgusting to intentionally misinterpret the author's words.
BeFreeBusy BeFreeBusy 9/17/2015 07:09
Actually Karjakin DID play in the candidates 2014 and by his own merits based on his rating.
ChessUser21 ChessUser21 9/17/2015 06:14
"Some chinks in the armour of the Chinese player" - That's racist!
Stupido Stupido 9/17/2015 03:12
You've got to be a real chess nerd to be excited by Giri-Leko. With those guys even the armageddon might be a draw after 130+ dull-looking moves.

Nakamura-Nepomiachtchi for example looks promises more interesting and fun chess.

Re predictions, Kramnik and Ivanchuk should win.

Roy Melendez Roy Melendez 9/17/2015 02:41
I have reviewed your predictions on these chess matchess, and I agree in 12 results of them, but I disagree in the results of 4 matches: Wei Yi must beat Areschenko, this young Chinese is a tough bone to chew. Ivanchuk is my favorite against Jakovenko, Lu Shanglei is hunger for a top gun like Topalov, so this will be the great surprise of round 3 beating Topalov, and finallly the mathc Karjakin vs Yu Yangyi will go down to the wire of the Armaggedon win the Chinese having the upper hand! Best regards, Professor Roy Meléndez (Venezuela).
disneychannel disneychannel 9/17/2015 02:11
I don't think andreikin would win against kramnik,granda won't win vs wojtaszek,jakovenko won't win against ivanchuk and dominguez won't win against adams!
Denix Denix 9/17/2015 11:21
I have Kramnik, Ivanchuk, Wei Yi, Eljanov and Tomashevsky winning.
1