Superbet Classic: Caruana sole leader as Duda beats Firouzja

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
5/15/2023 – Fabiano Caruana is leading the standings at the Superbet Chess Classic with one round to go. The US grandmaster showed great preparation as he finished his game against Anish Giri with a huge advantage on the clock — but Giri kept finding all the correct moves and eventually managed to secure a draw. Meanwhile, former co-leader Alireza Firouzja was defeated by Jan-Krzysztof Duda, who showcased good technique to collect his first win of the tournament. | Photo: Lennart Ootes

ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024 ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024

It is the program of choice for anyone who loves the game and wants to know more about it. Start your personal success story with ChessBase and enjoy the game even more.


Perfect preparation?

An in-form Fabiano Caruana employed a strategy often used among the elite in round 8 of the Superbet Chess Classic: he prepared a line that was sharp enough so that his opponent needed to figure things out over the board, but not forcing enough for it to have been deeply analysed by his rival’s team. This strategy does not intend to get a quick win, but instead looks to get a practical edge.

Playing white against Anish Giri, Caruana finished the game with more time on his clock than what he had started with, but saw his opponent finding all the crucial moves to keep the balance. A draw was signed after 26 moves, and Caruana explained:

The position is equal, and also I haven’t prepared anything here. I just knew that it’s more or less a playable position, and I have like an hour time advantage. [...] I was very disappointed when he basically [found] everything.

Caruana, who reached the top of the standings following his back-to-back wins in rounds 3 and 4, is now the sole leader, as former co-leader Alireza Firouzja was defeated by Jan-Krzysztof Duda. Duda had lost to Richard Rapport and drawn his remaining encounters, so he is now back on a fifty-percent score.

In the final round, Caruana will play black against Rapport. The latter is one of four players standing a half point behind the leader, together with Firouzja, Giri and Wesley So.

Anish Giri

Anish Giri | Photo: Lennart Ootes

Duda 1 - 0

Anish Giri, Fabiano Caruana

Fabiano Caruana is the sole leader with one round to go | Photo: Bryan Adams

Results - Round 8

Standings - Round 8

All games

Middlegame Secrets Vol.1 + Vol.2

Let us learn together how to find the best spot for the queen in the early middlegame, how to navigate this piece around the board, how to time the queen attack, how to decide whether to exchange it or not, and much more!


Carlos Colodro is a Hispanic Philologist from Bolivia. He works as a freelance translator and writer since 2012. A lot of his work is done in chess-related texts, as the game is one of his biggest interests, along with literature and music.