World Rapid Chess Championship 2021, Day 2, Warshaw: With 7.5/9 points, Magnus Carlsen was the sole leader after the end of Day 2. He successfully defused young bombs of Alireza Firouzja and Jan-Kryzystof Duda.
The second in the standing is tied between three GMs, notably Nordibek Abdusattorov, Alexander Grischuk, and Ian Nepomniachtchi with 7 points. Ian will again face the World Chess Champion on Tuesday.
The highlight of today was in the first round with two high-profile matchups, Duda vs Nepo and Carlsen vs Jobava. Irina Krush who was a commentator at Chess.com said “Jobava has been problematic for Magnus. He has pulled off some supposed results against him.”
That, however, proved correct as Jobava held the Magnus for a draw with the white pieces in the World Rapid Chess Champion 2021‘s 6th round.
Fabiano Caruana was the first to win the first-round game in under 30 minutes and just a minute later Ian finished his game against Duda and caught up in the points.
Caruana prepared a deep Nimzo-Indian Defense where until the 20th move it was all theory. His opponent, Indian GM Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, resigned on the 29th move. Duda went for the Anti-Berlin line, prepared in the World Chess Championship, with 8…Rb8. Nepomniachtchi after having gone through this line launched an attack and won with the White pieces.
The recent Speed Chess Championship 2021 winner, Hikaru Nakamura, showed his deep prep in the Marshall attack with 13.Rf5 move. Although, winning the fifth round, he settled for a draw in the sixth one.
The most anticipated clash of the evening: World Rapid Chess Championship 2021.
In the seventh round, everyone even the experts got what they were dying for. It was Magnus Carlsen against Alireza Firouzja.
Magnus Carlsen showing his strength and understanding of the game closed the matter in the 53rd move. Alireza Firoujza resigns.
Jobava after drawing with the World Champion also drew his game against the World Chess Championship challenger, Ian Nepomniachtchi. Both of them went for a six-way battle for second place.
Abdusattorov Nodirbek is the real deal as he showcases his talent. Yesterday, he got better of Fabiano Caruana and today he defeats Levon Aronian, what an entertaining tournament we are witnessing.
The other major result was Grischuk’s win over Korobov. As Black, he instructively gained space by pushing his h-pawn and subsequently flooding the white kingside with his queen and minor pieces. With this win, Grischuk joined first place, with six points, as Carlsen’s only other co-leader.
Carlsen and Grischuk only players with six points after 7th round.
They were the only players with six points but after them were six other GMs who had 5.5 points. The game between the leaders was complex a one, which ended in a complicated position.
The majority of the game in the 8th round were a draw, which aided Duda to quietly get back in the first place tie.
The game of today was between Daniil Dubov and Hans Niemann. The Russian chess sensation, who also assisted Magnus in the recent World Chess Championship, went for an exchange sacrifice on the 23rd move. His knights were gaining the light-squares on f3 and g4 with debilitation effect on the white army.
Caruana, who had a score of 5/7, invented an incredibly creative queen sacrifice for victory. however, despite earning the proverbial style points, it was bad for him. Fortunately, Caruana managed to secure a draw by the end of the game.
Abdusattorov was in beast mode with yet another GM falling against his feet, Radoslaw Wojtaszek. Meanwhile, GM Timur Gareyev received a shocking gift from Korobov.
The clash of the leaders: World Rapid Chess Championship 2021.
The trio of Magnus Carlsen, Alexander Grischuk, and Jan Duda were tied for first place. Grischuk was matched up with the trickster Jobava while Duda was up against Carlsen.
Duda was late for some reason and Carlsen showed sportsmanship by not starting the clock until Duda arrived. After trading his rook for a knight and two pawns in the middlegame, Carlsen ultimately won a tricky rook endgame which he, as usual, made look trivial.
Other notable games from this round include Nakamura’s win over Fedoseev, where he masterfully converted a queen and knight vs queen endgame on an incredibly open board.
Nepomniachtchi defeated Gareyev in a back-and-forth game that ended with two rooks and a bishop (for the Russian) overpowering a queen and a bishop.
Grischuk and Jobava ended in a draw while Ivan Cheparinov defeated Anish Giri in the Slav Defense with the White pieces.