Round Three: MVL Misses Victory Over Aronian, Svidler and Pons Score
ByEditorsNov 18 — 9:57 PM
Image by Valeriy Belobeev
In the Third Round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Palma de Mallorca games between the four leaders, Vachier-Lagrave-Aronian and Rajabov-Giri, finished in a draw. Peter Svidler joined the group of leaders by beating Jon-Ludvig Hammer in the third round.
Lots of spectators came to the Grand Prix venue today to watch the games and meet their favourite chess players. It was clear that most of them came to support their local hero Francisco Vallejo Pons who resides in Mallorca. The Spanish Grandmaster paid back for their six hours wait by winning his first game in the Grand Prix Series.
Maxime Vachier-Lagrave came close to defeating Levon Aronian, but missed his chance to “pay back” his opponent for elimination from the semifinal of the World Cup. At the post-game interview, the French Grandmaster was sure he had an advantage and was blaming himself for exchanging queens. He underestimated Aronian’s counterplay in the centre, which turned out to be enough to keep the balance in the game.
Jon-Ludvig Hammer spent almost half an hour on his move 16.Nf5 and, as it often happens when players think for too long, chose not the best continuation.
After 16…Bf5 17.ef d5 Peter Svidler got an obvious advantage. The Russian Grandmaster still had to show a precise way to win the game and among other decisions was happy to find 34…Ng4 (instead of tempting 34…e1Q), which prevents White’s conterplay on the King’s side.
The game finished with checkmate on the board, a rare guest in top-level events.
The longest game of Round Three, Rapport-Li Chao, finished in a draw. The Hungarian Grandmaster was pressing his opponent, but Li Chao held the ground with black pieces.
The first symbolic move was made by Carles Vich, President of the Balearic Chess Federation.
Watch the games broadcasted at https://worldchess.com/gp2017/.
Photos from the Third Round by Valeriy Belobeev are available here.
FIDE and World Chess announces today that the 2018 World Chess Championship Match will take place in London in November 2018. The world’s most prestigious chess tournament is to be the climax of a season of high-profile activity to extend the sport’s appeal among global audiences – and make 2018 the Year of Chess in the UK.
After 9 days of intense chess battles at the last leg of the World Chess Grand Prix series 2017 in Palma de Mallorca, the two winners of the series were finally determined: Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (Azerbaijan, overall 340 points in the series) and Alexander Grischuk (Russia, 336,4 points). They qualified for the Candidates Tournament – the next part of the World Chess Championship cycle, which leads up to the Championship match.
The sole leader of the Palma de Mallorca Grand Prix Levon Aronian made a quick draw with Evgeny Tomashevsky today, inviting the group of rivals to join him at the top. But same as in the previous rounds all games on the top boards finished peacefully and not a single player came close to catching up with him.
After seven rounds Aronian is in the lead with 4,5 points. A group of 8 players is half a point behind, including Vachier-Lagrave. In order to qualify for the Candidates, the Frenchman needs to win at least one more game. Boris Gelfand defeated Alexander Riazantsev, Pavel Eljanov won against Jon Ludvig Hammer, while Teimour Rajabov outplayed Li Chao. After the victory the Azerbaijani Grandmaster still hopes to qualify, but in that case has to win both games.
Javier Ochoa, Honorary FIDE Vice President and President of the Spanish Chess Federation, made the first symbolic move to start the fourth round, which turned out to be the most exciting round of the tournament so far, with six decisive games out of nine.
The world’s best chess players and chess establishment came together in Bellver Castle to celebrate the opening of the final leg of the FIDE 2017 World Chess Grand Prix Palma de Mallorca – a prestigious qualifier for the World Chess Candidates Tournament.
Katerina Lagno, one of the strongest Russian women-grandmasters won the historic Moscow Blitz Tournament, beating her fellow Russian Olympic team members Alexandra Kosteniuk, Valentina Gunina and Olga Girya.
After a draw against Ian Nepomniachtchi, Teimur Rajabov won the tournament. One of the strongest players, Rajabov had not won a major tournament lately, but has shown phenomenal form in Geneva and managed to overpower some of top world’s players