GMs Jan-Krzysztof Duda, Alexander Grischuk, Alireza Firouzja, and Wei Yi were eliminated from the Lindores Abbey Rapid Challenge after failing to finish in the top eight. The round-robin phase was won by GM Hikaru Nakamura.
Nakamura can enter the knockout phase with confidence as he was the only player who remained undefeated in the round-robin. His 7.5/11 was good for a 2900+ performance rating.
After a period of inactivity, GM Sergey Karjakin showed his class by finishing in second place with 7/11. The Russian grandmaster is a former world rapid champion; he won that title in 2012.
Lindores Abbey Rapid Challenge | Final Standings Round-robin
With just three rounds to be played and the top eight places at stake, it was no surprise to see a few more draws here and there on the last day of the round-robin. The only decisive game in round nine was GM Duda vs. GM Ding Liren, where the Chinese grandmaster avoided getting into the danger zone with a crushing win with the black pieces. The final position says it all.
By that point, Firouzja was on 3.5 points and Grischuk on 4.5. Their clash in round 10 was an important one and a must-win for the Iranian youngster. His choice of the King’s Indian was no surprise, and he pulled it off in a great game:
Many more things happened in the 10th round. For example, there was the third loss for Carlsen, who blundered a full piece against Dubov after having somewhat struggled throughout the game as White:
In the same round, the winner of the round-robin played one of his best games:
With one round to go, even the world champion himself wasn’t completely safe yet. To be sure of qualification, he’d better not lose to Firouzja, who needed a win to make it.
This time around, it was Carlsen saying: Your time will come, boy, but not just yet.
After a rest day on Friday, the tournament will continue with the knockout phase. Each day four players will be in action as only two matches—consisting of four rapid games and if needed, an armageddon game—will be played per day.
On Saturday the matches Nakamura-Aronian and Yu Yangyi-Ding Liren will be played, followed by Carlsen-So and Dubov-Karjakin on Sunday.
All games of day 3
The Lindores Abbey Rapid Challenge runs May 19-June 3 on Chess24 in association with the Lindores Abbey Heritage Society. The prize fund is $150,000 with a first prize of $45,000. The time control is 15 minutes for all moves with a 10-second increment after each move. No draw offers are allowed before move 40.