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Sunday, January 27, 2013

75th Tata Steel Chess 2013 R12: Magnus Carlsen Wins Title with Round to Spare

Chess blog for latest chess news and chess trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2012

Hi everyone,

Magnus Carlsen, the world number one from Norway, has won the 75th Tata Steel Chess Tournament with one round to spare. He took care of Hikaru Nakamura in spectacular fashion, and in short order. Nakamura resigned when he was unable to defend against the destructive 32.f7. As Levon Aronian was easily held to a draw by Anish Giri, Carlsen increased his lead to a point-and-a-half and will face Giri on Sunday in an effort to break Garry Kasparov's record of 10/13, set in 1999.
Round 12 - Saturday the 26th
van Wely, L. - Caruana, F. 1-0
Aronian, L. - Giri, A. ½-½
Carlsen, M. - Nakamura, H. 1-0
Harikrishna, P. - Wang, H. ½-½
Anand, V. - L'Ami, E. 1-0
Sokolov, I. - Hou, Y. 0-1
Leko, P. - Karjakin, S. ½-½

Viswanathan Anand joined Levon Aronian in second place after defeating Erwin l'Ami. Even though the Dutchman got a better endgame with black out of the opening, the World Champion showed his true mettle this time, and outplayed his opponent gradually. In the battle for Best Dutchman of the tournament, Loek van Wely again took the lead recovering from a loss in the previous round, as he had done already twice before in this tournament. His opponent Fabiano Caruana had his back against the wall all afternoon, and eventually lost a race for checkmate.

Ivan Sokolov's trouble is only increasing, and for the remaining Dutchman the end of the tournament can't come too soon. In a better position against Hou Yifan, he self-pinned his knight only to find out that keeping the piece out of harm's way cost him a pawn and the position. The games Harikrishna-Wang Hao and Leko-Karjakin ended in a draw from uneventful endgames.

Whereas the fight for first in the A-Group proved to be a bit anti-climatic, the heat is on in Group B. Arkadij Naiditsch and Sergey Movsesian could only draw their games and Richard Rapport took advantage of this by beating Jan Timman, thus joining them in the lead with 8 out of 12. The three leaders will all face players from the bottom of the standings in the last round. Sabino Brunello and Fernando Peralta again won their game in Group C and are now in first place with 10(!) points out of 12 games. In round 13 Brunello has the easier pairing, playing with black versus Miguoel Admiraal, while Peralta will face 2nd seed Alexander Kovchan, also with black.

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