GMs Jan-Krzysztof Duda, Alexander GrischukAlireza 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.

Grischuk narrowly missed qualification as he had the lowest score in the trio of players ending on 50 percent. GMs Daniil Dubov and Levon Aronian were the lucky ones there.

Lindores Abbey Rapid Challenge | Final Standings Round-robin

# Fed Name Rtg Perf 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Pts SB
1 Hikaru Nakamura 2829 2902 1 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 1 ½ 7.5/11
2 Sergey Karjakin 2709 2877 0 ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 1 1 7.0/11
3 Yu Yangyi 2738 2809 ½ 0 0 1 1 1 0 ½ ½ ½ 1 6.0/11 30.75
4 Wesley So 2741 2809 ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 6.0/11 31.5
5 Magnus Carlsen 2881 2797 ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ 0 1 1 1 0 1 6.0/11 31.25
6 Ding Liren 2836 2801 ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ 1 ½ 0 ½ 1 1 6.0/11 30.25
7 Daniil Dubov 2770 2775 ½ ½ 0 1 1 0 ½ 1 ½ 0 ½ 5.5/11 31
8 Levon Aronian 2778 2775 0 ½ ½ 0 1 ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 5.5/11 28.75
9 Alexander Grischuk 2784 2774 ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ 1 0 ½ 0 1 1 5.5/11 28.5
10 Alireza Firouzja 2703 2717 0 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ 0 1 1 ½ 4.5/11
11 Jan-Krzysztof Duda 2774 2678 0 0 ½ 1 ½ 0 1 ½ 0 0 ½ 4.0/11
12 Wei Yi 2752 2565 ½ 0 0 0 0 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ 2.5/11

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.

Ding Liren
Ding Liren made it to the knockout phase, where he plays his compatriot Yu Yangyi in what will be a repeat of their 2019 World Cup semifinal.

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:

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Alireza Firouzja
All dynamic players have a few nice King’s Indians from their youth, and Alireza Firouzja is no exception. Photo: Maria Emelianova/Chess.com.

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.

Magnus Carlsen
Job done. Carlsen will now face Wesley So. Photo: Maria Emelianova/Chess.com.

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. 


Related posts:

https://www.chess.com/news/view/lindores-abbey-rapid-challenge-day-3