SIMPLECHESS

Kramnik and Nakamura join Carlsen in the lead

Becker serves up 1.e4
In the second round, Vladimir Kramnik outplayed Nigel Short in the Four Knights, whereas Hikaru Nakamura maintained an advantage throughout to beat Levon Aronian. Luke McShane tried long and hard to repeat last year's victory over Magnus Carlsen, but the World No.1 held out for a draw.

Nigel Short played a rather quiet variation, but found a way to win the exchange. However, at the last moment, he declined the material on offer, but this led to disaster as he had his light-squared bishop locked out of the game, and was effectively a piece down. He should have taken the exchange when the position would have been unclear.

After a positional opening where Hikaru Nakamura obtained access to the f5-square, in contrast to Short, the American No.1 had little hesitation in snatching the exchange, when it became possible! Despite Black's passed pawn, the open lines favoured rooks, and Levon Aronian's 'compensation' proved to be insufficient.

Despite David Howell's move order, which is geared to avoiding the Marshall Gambit, Michael Adams still sacrificed a pawn in thematic style. Later, Howell was able to obtain a pair of passed pawns in the centre, but Adams's advanced a-pawn gave him enough compensation.

Luke McShane was able to snatch Black's loose b-pawn and ride the storm. Later his extra material and relatively safe king gave him significant winning chances. However, Carlsen was able to steer the game into a rook endgame which he held, despite White's protected passed pawn.

The second round:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
Nigel Short ENG 2698 0-1 Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 43 Four Knights Rubinstein
Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 1-0 Levon Aronian ARM 2802 54 Queen's Gambit 3...Be7
Luke McShane ENG 2671 0.5-0.5 Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 79 Spanish Neo-Archangel
David Howell ENG 2633 0.5-0.5 Michael Adams ENG 2734 35 Spanish Anti-Marshall

Viswanathan Anand (India, 2811) sat out the second round whilst helping out with the live commentary.

Here is the tournament situation so far:

Position

Name

Country

Rating

(1/11/2011)

World Ranking

(1/11/2011)

Age

Games

played

Points

1-3

Magnus Carlsen

NOR

2826

1

21

2 4
1-3

Vladimir Kramnik

RUS

2800

4

36

2 4
1-3

Hikaru Nakamura

USA

2758

10

24

2 4
4-5

Michael Adams

ENG

2734

17

40

2 2
4-5

Luke McShane

ENG

2671

74

27

2 2
6

Viswanathan Anand

IND

2811

2

41*

1 1
7-8

Levon Aronian

ARM

2802

3 29 2 1
7-8

David Howell

ENG

2633

139

21

2 1
9

Nigel Short

ENG 2698 48 46 1 0

There are 3 points for a win and 1 for a draw in London.

*Anand will be 42 on the 11th of December.

The first round results:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 0.5-0.5 Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 45 Catalan with ...dxc4
Levon Aronian ARM 2802 0.5-0.5 Luke McShane ENG 2671 42 Chebanenko Slav
Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 1-0 David Howell ENG 2633 40 Spanish with d3
Michael Adams ENG 2734 0.5-0.5 Viswanathan Anand IND 2811 49 Sicilian Najdorf

A number of VIPs will be visiting the London Chess Classic, such as former Tennis ace Boris Becker, who is in the photo with Magnus Carlsen.

The playing schedule (local time):

Rounds 1 to 3, the 3rd to 5th of December at 2pm.

Round 4 on the 6th of December at 4pm.

(Rest day on the 7th of December)

Rounds 5-8, the 8th to the 11th of December at 2pm.

Round 9 will be on the 12th of December at 12 noon.

For Los Angeles subtract eight hours.

For New York subtract five hours.

For Paris and Madrid, add one hour.

For Moscow add three hours.

For Mumbai add five-and-a-half hours.

For Sydney add eleven hours.

More information from the official site: http://www.londonchessclassic.com/classic.htm


Published on , Updated on

React to this article

Top of page ▲
All the members having a valid membership (out of trying period) can comment the articles. Let's subscribe !

Reactions (0)

  • No reaction for the moment