Sergey Karjakin defeated Anish Giri in round 7 of the FIDE Grand Prix in Tashkent to reverse the negative trend after two consecutive losses.

In the clash between the winners of previous FIDE Grand Prix in Baku, Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand, the Italian star scored a victory that pushed the former world championship challenger to the bottom of the cross-table.

The remaining four games were drawn.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.

Radjabov – Mamedyarov 1/2

The first game to finish was the duel of two top Grandmasters of Azerbaijan. The Queen’s Gambit Declined saw a swift trade of all pieces down to opposite-coloured bishops endgame. Draw was signed on move 31.

Jakovenko – Andreikin 1/2

Jakovenko repeated the Bf4 Queen’s Gambit Declined variation that Gelfand earlier used against him. The small difference int he position of light-squared bishop didn’t matter much.

Just like in the cited game, black easily achieved equality by challenging the files on the queenside. White couldn’t get anything going and draw was agreed on move 31.

Kasimdzhanov – Nakamura 1/2

The American Grandmaster employed his trusted Dutch defence, arranging the pieces according to “Ponomariov” plan.

White didn’t rush to press on the d6-pawn, instead opting for a more restrained approach. At one point he tried to unbalance the position by trading the bishop for the knight.

But black responded by exchanging more minor pieces when white was left with doubled pawns on the d-file. Those pawns were useful though, taking the central posts away from black pieces.

Shortly before the time control the players have agreed to a draw.

Vachier-Lagrave – Jobava 1/2

Another Caro-Kann and another highly entertaining game by the Georgian Grandmaster.

In the Advance variation black introduced a new plan that involved a positional sacrifice of bishop for a pawn. White king was weakened and black collected two more pawns to achieve compensation.

But a couple of shy moves by Jobava were enough to get him into trouble. Luckily for him, Vachier-Lagrave missed the sequence that would have won another piece.

After the knights were traded, the players have agreed to a draw.

Caruana – Gelfand 1-0

In the Classical Nimzo-Indian defence white avoided the sharpest lines with 7.Bh4 and instead gave up the dark-squared bishop.

The resulting pawn structure was a favourite of the former world champion Botvinnik.

At the convenient moment white killed the central tension by taking the pawn on c5. Black’s reaction might not have been the best – he exchanged the knights and later captured the wrong pawn.

A neat tactical shot allowed white to win the key f7-pawn. From then on it was only matter of time for Caruana to convert the advantage.

Karjakin – Giri 1-0

In the Taimanov Sicilian white practically invented a new system with the early 7.Qf3. It is interesting that engines are suggesting 7…Ba3!? as reply.

Black’s relaxed approach was questioned when white lined a battery on the f-file and forced black king to concede the castling rights.

White unleashed a powerful attack that later won him significant material advantage.

Black resisted until the time control but then finally admitted the defeat.

Chess Daily News from Susan Polgar
Tags: , , ,