Sinquefield Cup video highlights (Part 3)

by ChessBase
9/7/2018 – (Continued from Part 2) Wrapping up our tour of the extensive and high-quality Sinquefield Cup coverage on the Saint Louis Chess Club YouTube Channel, we've pulled out a number of the interviews and bonus material you may have missed. Have a look and keep it in mind for future reference. There are game annotations from GM Daniel Fernandez too!

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.


Bonus material and interviews

Below you can browse a number of embedded clips or link directly to others. All content is from the Saint Louis Chess Club's extensive and expanding channel on YouTube, indexed here for convenient review.

Round 7

Round 7 saw Magnus Carlsen shush the audience in the Confessional Booth en route to a draw with Caruana, a game which naturally became the focal point of the round.

Caruana said after the game, "I guess he thought it was already over, but it wasn't". Asked why he hadn't gone into the Confessional thus far in the tournament, Caruana said, "whenever I have a good position I don't really want to jinx it, and usually by the time I've had a good position there isn't really much to talk about anyway."

Maurice's Question to Players

"How important is the round 7 game between Carlsen and Caruana for the World Championship match in London?"

Candidates veterans Mamedyarov, Nakamura, So plus Anand, Dominguez and Caruana himself share their thoughts

Interview with Nette Robinson

Painted pieces

Robinson, among the artists in Painted Pieces, an exhibit at the World Chess Hall of Fame, talks about the exhibit and her work

Interviews with Magnus Carlsen and Fabiano Caruana

Both Carlsen and Caruana were interviewed at the conclusion of their direct encounter. In fact, they were the only players interviewed on the webcast. First up was the World Champion:

"The problem is in all of my games I'm not being practical. I just can't make up my mind, I can't follow my intuition and make decisions." 

"I miscalculated...I only saw afterwards how to refute [27.f6 and] Nf5" 

Caruana, for his part, was evidently relieved to escape with a draw and a bit baffled how his position became so bad in the middlegame.

"There are no easy moves for Black, so to defend this you have to basically play perfectly up until the end of the game, and I didn't with [24...]Ne7 obviously."

"The good thing about having a dead lost position is that you no longer see ghosts in dead drawn positions."

All games of Round 7


Round 7 recap and ChessBase round-up show

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IM Lawrence Trent takes on the Round 7 highlights

Round 8 

Harry Benson, the legendary photographer of many celebrities including Bobby Fischer was an early guest on the webcast. The focus was on his time with Fischer:

"The reason I got on with him was because I knew nothing about chess...because anyone who spoke chess with Bobby, he thought they were morons."

"These guys look like a bunch of rock stars...Carlsen looks like a movie star"

All games from Round 8 (annotated by GM Daniel Fernandez)


Round 8 recap and ChessBase round-up show

IM Lawrence Trent presents the highlights of the day

Round 9 

Doc BrownLuke Skywalker, Indiana Jones, or Professor X? Most players seemed to think Fabiano Caruana is a "hero" as opposed to a villain. But the funniest visual definitely came with Alexander Grischuk's idea of Fabiano as Doc Brown in Back to the Future!

There were a ton of player interviews in round nine, as the producers looked to wrap-up the tournament from each player's perspective.

Wesley So seemed to think that the tournament was over for him, as it seemed unlikely that both Aronian and Carlsen could win to leave him tied with Caruana, which is of course exactly what happened!

Player interviews

"You start to see some dangers and eventually start to panic. I think that's what happened to him."

"I said 'I'm going to play a normal game, and then if a draw happens then it's OK', and then I got too excited."

All games of Round 9


Round 9 ChessBase round-up show

The Playoff

The regulations called for a playoff between only two players, with any additional ties being broken by the tiebreak rules — in order: direct encounter, wins, and wins with black. The problem was that all three winners were tied on these criteria, and the fallback plan to eliminate one player was a drawing of lots. That didn't sit well with Carlsen and Aronian, and so, in the end, the organisers and arbiters took the decision to split the top honours three-ways.

Tony Rich on the tie-break decision

But there was still a playoff for the Grand Chess Tour qualification to the London mini-knockout tournament in December. You can replay the action and see our full coverage in "Caruana bests So in GCT playoff".

Games of the playoff


ChessBase Round-up show

Playoff round-up show with IM Lawrence Trent

The Closing Ceremony

Finally, the Closing Ceremony was held the evening after the GCT playoff at the World Chess Hall of Fame and included comments from the Saint Louis County Executive Steve Stenger, who praised the Sinquefields' recent pledge to donate USD $50 million (not a typo) to Saint Louis University.

Players and Rex Sinquefield

Rex Sinquefield at the centre of the players and between Caruana and Carlsen | Photo: Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes

The winners also gave brief remarks, who all effusively praised the Chess Campus patrons Rex and Jeanne Sinquefield:

Caruana: "It feels amazing. It's been so many years since I had a great tournament here. It couldn't have gone better I think. There were some exciting moments and I think in the end it was a fair shared victory. I think also that Magnus and Levon fully deserved the first place, and they fought very hard in the last round".

Aronian: "I think it was kind of symbolic to have ten years of this wonderful organisation and support towards our game, to have a shared victory, because we — all the players — are so grateful to the Sinquefield family, for what they are doing, and we've been just blessed with everything, just being here. So I guess that's why I wanted to have some fun, and I always want to have fun here. The only problem is the last time I won the tournament here, I've beaten three Americans. So this time there were only two players from Russia, if there were three I would have had some chances" [referring to his only two wins against Karjakin and Grischuk. -Ed.].

Carlsen: "Frankly speaking, I was second three times and wasn't particularly close to winning any of them, but I cannot say that I echo Levon's sentiment that it's nice to share the victory — it's much nicer to win on your own I think. I think Levon would also agree with that. Having said that, for me personally, it's obviously massive as I'd had a bit of a drought, not only in this particular tournament but also in tournaments of this stature with only such world-class players. I've usually been second recently. So I'm very happy to share first place." 

Winners raising the trophy

The unorthodox raising of the trophy by all three winners | Photo: Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes


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