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Candidates Round 8 — Nepo at the top

What a start for the Candidates’ resume with Caruana and Alekseenko scoring after several hours and Nepomniachtchi reaching the top as a sole leader with 5 points.

Photo by Lennart Ootes/FIDE

Starting with the most interesting game of the day, Fabiano Caruana was clearly very well prepared and won with a remarkable style. Fabi took himself in a very dangerous position, with less material, but enough compensation to achieve an amazing win, and also entertain the whole chess community!

Another surprise of Round 8 was Alekseenko’s win in a position that could turn into an equal rook endgame, but Grischuk preferred to keep his extra material and give Kirill a solid counterplay.

Far less exciting was the game between the two Chinese grandmasters, Wang Hao and Ding Liren, who made a draw in less than two hours.

Lastly, Anish Giri decided to play the Sveshnikov system against Ian Nepomniachtchi, which also ended in a draw after some inaccuracies from the White’s side.

Watch WGM Dina Belenkaya, GM Ernesto Inarkiev, and GM Sergey Karjakin comment on the R8 games:

Standings after the 8th round:

# Player Position Rating
1 Ian Nepomniachtchi 5 2774
2 Fabiano Caruana 2842
3 Maxime Vachier-Lagrave 2767
4 Anish Giri 4 2763
5 Hao Wang 4 2762
6 Kirill Alekseenko 2698
7 Alexander Grischuk 2777
8 Ding Liren 3 2805

Pairings for the 9th round:

Kirill Alekseenko – Fabiano Caruana
Alexander Grischuk – Ian Nepomniachtchi
Anish Giri – Wang Hao
Ding Liren – Maxime Vachier-Lagrave

Join our LIVE breakdown studio with WGM Dina Belenkaya, GM Ernesto Inarkiev, and their amazing guests every day at 5 PM GMT, on Youtube and Facebook.

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 1140   6 mo   Candidates 2021   event report   Main feature   Video