Sinquefield Cup Ultimate moves and Closing Ceremony

by ChessBase
8/29/2019 – The 2019 Sinquefield Cup playoff ended up with Ding Liren beating world champion Magnus Carlsen to win the title and take home $82.500. After two draws in the rapid games, the Chinese star beat Carlsen in both blitz encounters. The commentators and the world champion deservedly praised Ding's performance. Express report. | Photo: Lennart Ootes / Grand Chess Tour

Endgames of the World Champions from Fischer to Carlsen Endgames of the World Champions from Fischer to Carlsen

Let endgame expert Dr Karsten Müller show and explain the finesses of the world champions. Although they had different styles each and every one of them played the endgame exceptionally well, so take the opportunity to enjoy and learn from some of the best endgames in the history of chess.


Carlsen suffers in rapid and blitz

After defending his World Championship title against Fabiano Caruana on tiebreaks last year, Magnus Carlsen confirmed once again he is not only the best classical player on the planet, but also the strongest in accelerated time controls. In fact, the Norwegian is known for claiming title after title when first place is decided in rapid and blitz.

Carlsen's dominance continued during the first semester of 2019, until the August events in Saint Louis kicked off...His performance at the GCT Rapid & Blitz tournament in the 'capital of American chess' was disappointing, and it did not seem like he would be returning to his winning ways at the Sinquefield Cup. But two back to back victories in the final rounds propelled him to shared first place, which meant the title would be decided on a rapid and blitz playoff against Ding Liren.

The Chinese ace had impressed the chess world with his positional wins over Anish Giri and Fabiano Caruana in the classical event. However, facing the world champion in a direct match-up in faster time controls probably reminded him of the 2017 Champions Showdown tournament, when Carlsen defeated him more than convincingly by a 67:25 score. 

But Ding was up to the task! He defeated Carlsen in the two blitz games that followed the pair of draws in the rapid phase of the tiebreaks. With these results, the Chinese grandmaster climbed to sixth and third places in the live rapid and blitz ratings list, respectively. Without a doubt, a remarkable feat!

Closing Ceremony

The closing will be held at the World Chess Hall of Fame at 23:00 UTC (1:00 CEST, 19:00 EDT).

Ultimate moves

A tradition after the Sinquefield Cup is an exhibition match at the Saint Louis Chess Club pitting founder Rex Sinquefield against his son Randy, each joined by a team of grandmasters. Rex and Randy make the first five moves, then the players swap out for a GM from their "bench", who rotate every five moves. Six games in all are played with each side having 5 minutes plus 5 seconds per move.


Ultimate standings


Sinquefield Cup games and commentary


WGM Jennifer Shahade and GMs Yasser Seirawan and Maurice Ashley

Tiebreak results


Final standings


Results of Rounds 1-11


Round 11 Round-up show

IM Lawrence Trent reviews the games of the round

Round 11 games annotated by V. Saravanan


Here are the tour standings prior to the Sinquefield Cup:

GCT standings

Magnus Carlsen leads despite a lacklustre St. Louis Rapid and Blitz | Graphic: Grand Chess Tour

Kasparov to play Caruana in Fischer Random

The Sinquefield Cup will run through August 27th, but the jam-packed chess session in Saint Louis will continue a week later. On Monday, September 2nd, another edition of the Champions Showdown will kick off. Using the same format as in 2018, four Chess 960 matches will take place. The event, dubbed Chess 9LX (Roman numerals are in use), will include the presence of none other than living legend Garry Kasparov.

The 13th world champion will have a tough task, as he will be facing world number two Fabiano Caruana. Last year, Kasparov lost his match against Veselin Topalov 14½:11½. The fact that he has already played under this format might help him overcome the lack of practice, as Caruana was not part of the line-up at the 2018 edition.

Garry Kasparov

Garry Kasparov during the 2018 Champions Showdown | Photo: Lennart Ootes

The regulations are the same as last year. Six rapid games at G/30 with a 10-second delay and fourteen blitz games at G/5 with a 5-second delay will decide the winners. Each rapid game is worth two points and each blitz encounter is worth a single point. Days one, two and three will see the players facing each other twice in Rapid and twice in Blitz; while eight blitz games will be played on day four.

Each round will begin with the same starting position on all boards, and new positions will be drawn after every fourth game. The players will be able to prepare for their games, but they are not allowed to use electronic devices. As the regulations stipulate:

Positions will be drawn in the playing hall. Once drawn, players will have time to prepare, but must remain in the playing hall. Players may have a second to assist, but may not use electronic devices such as computers or phones. The Chess Club’s video production team will have the right to record players during their preparation and may use that content on the show.

Besides Kasparov vs Caruana, the other three match-ups are Wesley So vs Veselin Topalov, Leinier Dominguez vs Peter Svidler and Hikaru Nakamura vs Levon Aronian. Notice that Caruana and Aronian are set to participate in three consecutive events in Saint Louis — the GCT Rapid & Blitz, the Sinquefield Cup and the Champions Showdown. 





2 September

12:00 PM

Draw for Position

1:00 PM

Rapid Game 1

2:30 PM

Rapid Game 2

4:00 PM

Blitz Game 1

4:30 PM

Blitz Game 2




3 September

12:00 PM

Draw for Position

1:00 PM

Rapid Game 3

2:30 PM

Rapid Game 4

4:00 PM

Blitz Game 3

4:30 PM

Blitz Game 4




4 September

12:00 PM

Draw for Position

1:00 PM

Rapid Game 5

2:30 PM

Rapid Game 6

4:00 PM

Blitz Game 5

4:30 PM

Blitz Game 6




5 September

12:30 PM

Draw for Position

1:00 PM

Blitz Game 7

1:30 PM

Blitz Game 8

2:00 PM

Blitz Game 9

2:30 PM

Blitz Game 10

3:00 PM

Draw for Position

3:30 PM

Blitz Game 11

4:00 PM

Blitz Game 12

4:30 PM

Blitz Game 13

5:00 PM

Blitz Game 14


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