Tal R02: All games drawn – first win expected tomorrow

11/6/2009 – We are not complaining – yet. Two or three of today's games were quite exciting. But somehow we miss the rush of wins, and a table in which not everyone is in the lead. That will happen tomorrow. It must. Today it was Ponomariov and Ivanchuk who put some token pressure on Aronian and Svidler, but in the end the result was five draws. Round two report.

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Tal Memorial 2009

The Tal Memorial, which is taking place from November 4th to 19th, is the strongest tournament of the year, and at category 21 (average Elo 2764) one of the strongest of all time. It is a ten-player round robin with classical time controls – 40 moves in two hours, then 20 moves in one hour and then 15 minutes for the rest of the game with 30 seconds increment per move in this phase. The first four games take place in the National Hotel (Mokhovaya Street D15), the last five in the mall GUM (Red Square 3). The games start at 15:00h local Moscow time, which is 13:00h EST (Berlin, Paris), 12:00h London, 7:00 a.m. New York, 5:30 p.m. New Delhi, 11:00 p.m. Sydney. You can find the exact starting time at your location here. The World Blitz Championship (see below) will be staged after the main event, from November 16-18 2009 in GUM.

Round two report

Round 2: Friday, November 6, 2009
Vladimir Kramnik 
½-½
 Vishy Anand
Peter Svidler 
½-½
 Vassily Ivanchuk
Ruslan Ponomariov 
½-½
 Levon Aronian
Peter Leko 
½-½
 Boris Gelfand
Magnus Carlsen 
½-½
 Alex. Morozevich

Once again: all games drawn. Some were somewhat routine – like Leko vs Gelfand, where the players quickly rattled off almost thirty moves of a Petroff before they paused to ponder the position, which by then was clearly drawn (they conceded that on move 44). Anand played a Grunfeld and held a cast-iron draw against his sometimes nemesis Kramnik – it was the first game in this round to finish.

Ponomariov put some pressure on Aronian's Grunfeld, without really putting the Armenian GM in serious danger. Peter Svidler had a short, sharp game which was quite dangerous for him against Vassily Ivanchuk, but the two ended it on move 27 with a repetition.

Magnus Carlsen played the 4.f3 line of the Nimzo Indian Sämisch, as he had done against Ivanchuk in Cap d'Agde a year ago (and Anand had done in the second game of the World Championship match against Vladimir Kramnik in Bonn two weeks earlier). But the Norwegian GM could not find a win against the stubbornly defending Alexander Morozevich.

Tomorrow we hope to celebrated the first decided game in this tournament. Mind you, we are not complaining – yet. Some of the games in the first two rounds have been very exciting. Carlsen vs Kramnik in round one was excellent. But somehow we miss the zing of win, and a table in which not everyone is in the lead.

The Playchess statistics show that there were just over 6000 visitors on the server around four o'clock. At 21:30h 183,000 games had been played for a total of 397.7 million since the server was first launched. It is still not clear whether the 400 million will come before the end of this tournament.


Schedule and results

Round 1: Thursday, November 5, 2009
Magnus Carlsen 
½-½
 Vladimir Kramnik
Alex. Morozevich 
½-½
 Peter Leko
Boris Gelfand 
½-½
 Ruslan Ponomariov
Levon Aronian 
½-½
 Peter Svidler
Vassily Ivanchuk 
½-½
 Vishy Anand
Round 2: Friday, November 6, 2009
Vladimir Kramnik 
½-½
 Vishy Anand
Peter Svidler 
½-½
 Vassily Ivanchuk
Ruslan Ponomariov 
½-½
 Levon Aronian
Peter Leko 
½-½
 Boris Gelfand
Magnus Carlsen 
½-½
 Alex. Morozevich
Round 3: Saturday, November 7, 2009
Alex. Morozevich 
-
 Vladimir Kramnik
Boris Gelfand 
-
 Magnus Carlsen
Levon Aronian 
-
 Peter Leko
Vassily Ivanchuk 
-
 Ruslan Ponomariov
Vishy Anand 
-
 Peter Svidler
Games – Report
Round 4: Sunday, November 8, 2009
Vladimir Kramnik 
-
 Peter Svidler
Ruslan Ponomariov 
-
 Vishy Anand
Peter Leko 
-
 Vassily Ivanchuk
Magnus Carlsen 
-
 Levon Aronian
Alex. Morozevich 
-
 Boris Gelfand
Games – Report
Monday, November 9, 2009 Free day
M T W T F S S
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 27 27 29 29
Round 5: Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Boris Gelfand 
-
 Vladimir Kramnik
Levon Aronian 
-
 Alex. Morozevich
Vassily Ivanchuk 
-
 Magnus Carlsen
Vishy Anand 
-
 Peter Leko
Peter Svidler 
-
 Ruslan Ponomariov
Games – Report
Round 6: Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Vladimir Kramnik 
-
 Ruslan Ponomariov
Peter Leko 
-
 Peter Svidler
Magnus Carlsen 
-
 Vishy Anand
Alex. Morozevich 
-
 Vassily Ivanchuk
Boris Gelfand 
-
 Levon Aronian
Games – Report
Round 7: Thursday, November 12, 2009
Levon Aronian 
-
 Vladimir Kramnik
Vassily Ivanchuk 
-
 Boris Gelfand
Vishy Anand 
-
 Alex. Morozevich
Peter Svidler 
-
 Magnus Carlsen
Ruslan Ponomariov 
-
 Peter Leko
Games – Report
Round 8: Friday, November 13, 2009
Vladimir Kramnik 
-
 Peter Leko
Magnus Carlsen 
-
 Ruslan Ponomariov
Alex. Morozevich 
-
 Peter Svidler
Boris Gelfand 
-
 Vishy Anand
Levon Aronian 
-
 Vassily Ivanchuk
Games – Report
Round 9: Saturday, November 14, 2009
Vassily Ivanchuk 
-
 Vladimir Kramnik
Vishy Anand 
-
 Levon Aronian
Peter Svidler 
-
 Boris Gelfand
Ruslan Ponomariov 
-
 Alex. Morozevich
Peter Leko 
-
 Magnus Carlsen
Games – Report

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 the free PGN reader ChessBase Light, which gives you immediate access. You can also use the program to read, replay and analyse PGN games. New and enhanced: CB Light 2009!


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