Tal Memorial Blitz: Ivanchuk wins again, ahead of Kramnik and Carlsen

9/1/2008 – A big qualifier with dozens of international stars, then the final with 18 players and an average rating of 2726. The Tal Memorial Blitz Tournament in Moscow was one of the strongest ever held. After the first half Vladimir Kramnik led, ahead of Magnus Carlsen. The second half was all Vassily Ivanchuk – the Ukrainian beat both Kramnik and Carlsen to win the event. Games, photos and videos.

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Tal Memorial Blitz tournament in Moscow

The Tal Memorial took place from August 17th to 31st 2008 in the Exhibition Hall of GUM mall, located directly on the Red Square. After the main event in with classical time controls there was a blitz tournament (on August 29th-30th), with a qualifier two days earlier. It was attended by a large number of internationally known players (see the first Europe Echecs video report below). Some players, like Magnus Carlsen and Antoly Karpov, were seeded invitees.

A total of 18 players participated in the final, which was a double round robin. The average rating was 2726 – a staggering figure when you consider the number of players. After the first half of the tournament the table was as follows:

In the second half Vassily Ivanchuk won the games against his nearest rivals Kramnik and Carlsen to move to the top of the scoresheet. He never relinquised that spot and added another great victory to his resumé. This is how it ended:

Final result of the blitz tournament


Click for a full cross table

Picture gallery

The following pictures were taken from the Europe Echecs report produced in Moscow by GM Robert Fontaine. You can watch the videos themselves in the player at the end of this report.


The big qualifier on the first day – readers with keen eyes and some knowledge of chess history will recognise the portrait of a former World Champion on the wall to the left.


Look who's playing blitz in Moscow: business tycoon Maxim Dlugy (the GM on the left) against Zahar Efimenko. Neither qualified for the final.


A nice endgame to watch in the "Tal Blitz (01) Eng" report by Europe Echecs below


The legendary twelfth World Champion Anatoly Karpov finished 14th with 14/34 points


Magnus Carlsen vs Alexander Girschuk – the Norwegian super-star had a tough time with the Muscovite, losing both games to him. Carlsen beat Mamdeyarov, Morozevich and Karpov 2-0 and finished in place three. No orange juice in Moscow?


These two old buddies finished second and fourth


The indomitable Vassily Ivanchuk wins yet another great event. The Ukrainian beat Kramnik and Carlsen 1.5:0.5, dismantled Grischuk 2-0 and did not lose a single mini-match in the tournament, which he won by a full point.


Europe Echecs videos reports

These reports are provided by Europe Echecs.com, which did extensive coverage of the Tal Memorial Tournament.

Links

You can download the free PGN reader ChessBase Light to read, replay and analyse the PGN games. It also gives you access to the Playchess.com server, where you can follow live coverage of international tournaments.


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