Carlsen Wins 5th Rapid World Championship; Bodnaruk Wins 1st

    Carlsen Wins 5th Rapid World Championship; Bodnaruk Wins 1st

    GM Magnus Carlsen secured the world rapid chess crown for a record fifth time along with the $60,000 first prize at the 2023 FIDE World Rapid Chess Championship after scoring 3/4 on the final day. Wins over GMs Vladimir Fedoseev and Pouya Idani pushed Carlsen’s score to 10/13, eclipsing Fedoseev (9.5/13) and GM Yu Yangyi (9/13), who finished second and third respectively.

    IM Anastasia Bodnaruk snatched the Women’s title in a nervy blitz playoff with GM Humpy Koneru, which ended in sudden death. Earlier in the day, Humpy won on demand to tie for first on 8.5/11 and force a playoff with Bodnaruk, pushing GM Lei Tingjie into the bronze medal position due to tiebreaks. All three players will receive $30,000 for their efforts.

    2023 World Rapid Championship | Final Standings (Top 20)

    Rank Seed Fed Title Name Rating Points
    1 1 GM Carlsen, Magnus 2818 10
    2 11 GM Fedoseev, Vladimir 2716 9.5
    3 15 GM Yu, Yangyi 2699 9
    4 18 GM Vidit, Santosh Gujrathi 2691 9
    5 79 GM Murzin, Volodar 2547 9
    6 4 GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2767 9
    7 13 GM Dubov, Daniil 2712 9
    8 14 GM Praggnanandhaa, R 2706 9
    9 37 GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2629 9
    10 20 GM Grischuk, Alexander 2678 9
    11 9 GM Abdusattorov, Nodirbek 2727 9
    12 7 GM Svidler, Peter 2737 9
    13 6 GM Caruana, Fabiano 2762 9
    14 31 GM Maghsoodloo, Parham 2644 9
    15 26 GM Erigaisi, Arjun 2654 8.5
    16 43 GM Cheparinov, Ivan 2618 8.5
    17 45 GM Matlakov, Maxim 2616 8.5
    18 50 GM Korobov, Anton 2601 8.5
    19 8 GM Rapport, Richard 2735 8.5
    20 32 GM Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2642 8.5

    (Full standings here.)

    5 Rapid Titles, 6 Blitz Titles, 5 Classical Titles 

    With 16 world championship titles to his name, Carlsen’s place among the greatest chess players of all time is undisputed, and the nature of his 2023 World Rapid Championship victory makes this one of the sweetest yet.

    Heading into the final day, the Norwegian maestro was delicately poised in a three-way tie with Fedoseev and Yu on 7/9, but a crushing 3/4 performance on day three allowed him to accelerate past his fellow competitors.

    Carlsen kicked off the day with a comprehensive win over Fedoseev that had pundits prophesizing that the world’s best player had the event under lock and key, despite dangerous opponents still standing in his way.

    Carlsen’s win against Fedoseev turned out to be his most important of the event. Photo: Lennart Ootes/FIDE.

    Our Game of the Day was a fine example of Carlsen’s ability to control his destiny and has been analyzed by GM Dejan Bojkov below.

    Iran’s Idani put up staunch resistance against Carlsen in round 11 and managed to procure an equal endgame although the tournament leader once again bucked the engine’s evaluation and outplayed his opponent.

    Commentator GM Peter Leko subsequently quipped: “One also gets the feeling that in rapid time controls you have no right to get into an endgame against Magnus.”

    Carlsen’s average CAPS score was right around the 98% mark on Thursday, begging the question, in which part of the game can he be beaten? Photo: Lennart Ootes/FIDE.

    The one opponent Carlsen did show respect to was the local hope and 2021 champion, GM Nodirbek Abdusattorov. With a sizeable crowd amassing to witness the spectacle, he equalized with Black and quickly offered a draw, maintaining his one-point lead over the field.

    Abdusattorov famously defeated Carlsen in the 2021 edition. In 2023, Carlsen took no chances. Photo: Lennart Ootes/FIDE.

    A 23-move draw in the Four Knights Game: Double Spanish, Nimzowitsch Variation with GM Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa was merely an encore to Carlsen’s most dominant world rapid performance yet.

    Despite being beaten by Carlsen in round six, Vidit was the main challenger threatening to steal first place. The Indian GM started the day with an opportunistic win over GM Anton Korobov before stamping out compatriot GM Arjun Erigaisi‘s chances of Candidates qualification in round 11.

    Following Carlsen’s round-12 draw with Abdusattorov, Vidit very nearly found himself back in equal first as he built a winning position against Fedoseev, but the heartbreaking blunder 47.Bxg4?? shattered Vidit’s title hopes. A tragedy for one of the fan favorites. 

    Yu also would have been a likely challenger if not for an endgame capitulation that gifted GM Dmitry Andreikin a “crazy rook” stalemate in round 11. The result seemed to affect Yu’s morale and he drew his remaining three games, still managing to secure bronze ahead of 12 players who finished on 9/13.

    Silver medalist Fedoseev was truly a cat with nine lives on the final day of the tournament and the prolific blitzer was able to procure “two incredible turnarounds” (according to Carlsen) against GMs Nihal Sarin and Vidit, making up for his earlier loss to Carlsen.

    A quick draw in round 13 was all that the Slovenian representative needed to confirm a second-placed finish and earn a $50,000 cheque. He will be a force to be reckoned with in the blitz championship, a time control he is arguably even better at than rapid.

    Fedoseev and Nepomniachtchi are top tips for the blitz. Photo: Lennart Ootes/FIDE.

    Days before arriving in Samarkand, Carlsen shared that he felt that “the world blitz is much harder to win” than the rapid. Though he is the favorite to win his second blitz title in as many years, maintaining stability and an unbeaten run, as he did in the rapid, will be far more challenging. 

    Carlsen will only leave Samarkand content if he retains both the rapid and blitz titles. Photo: Lennart Ootes/FIDE.

    2023 Women’s World Rapid Championship | Final Standings (Top 20) 

    Rank Seed Fed Title Name Rating Points
    1 51 IM Bodnaruk, Anastasia 2265 8.5
    2 8 GM Koneru, Humpy 2444 8.5
    3 3 GM Lei, Tingjie 2517 8.5
    4 21 IM Salimova, Nurgyul 2371 8
    5 29 WGM Zhai, Mo 2351 8
    6 1 GM Ju, Wenjun 2575 8
    7 14 GM Gunina, Valentina 2412 8
    8 6 GM Lagno, Kateryna 2463 7.5
    9 5 GM Goryachkina, Aleksandra 2486 7.5
    10 42 IM Garifullina, Leya 2287 7.5
    11 65 WGM Yu, Jennifer 2217 7.5
    12 28 IM Narva, Mai 2351 7.5
    13 80 FM Sahithi, Varshini M 2138 7.5
    14 11 GM Zhu, Jiner 2431 7
    15 59 WIM Lu, Miaoyi 2239 7
    16 12 GM Muzychuk, Anna 2424 7
    17 48 WGM Munkhzul, Turmunkh 2279 7
    18 102 WFM Nurgaliyeva, Zarina 1963 7
    19 10 IM Assaubayeva, Bibisara 2436 7
    20 61 IM Fataliyeva, Ulviyya 2227 7

    (Full standings here.)

    A playoff was required to decide the women’s title and, following a three-way tie for first between Bodnaruk, Humpy, and Lei, it was Bondaruk and Humpy who earned the right to contest the title based on superior tiebreaks.

    Lei was somewhat unlucky to be ousted from the playoff as Humpy had won on demand against GM Kateryna Lagno in round 11.

    On the other hand, it was Lei’s choice to take a three-move draw with the white pieces in the final game—it’s not clear if she realized that the Women’s regulations, unlike the Open regulations, only allowed for a two-player playoff. 

    Though Humpy was the rating favorite in the playoff, Bodnaruk had proven to be a fierce competitor and no one was shocked to see the match enter sudden death following two chaotic, decisive blitz games.

    The wait times between games only added to the tension in the air. Photo: Anastasia Korolkova/FIDE.

    Throughout the four games played, Humpy generally had better positions out of the opening but was susceptible to serious time trouble, a factor that would be her undoing in the second sudden-death game, where she ended up flagging during a wild middlegame.

    A surprise winner in the women’s section, Bodnaruk became the first IM to win the women’s world rapid championship and was the only player in the field to finish undefeated (pre-playoff) other than the classical world champion GM Ju Wenjun.

    Bodnaruk’s performance in this event is undoubtedly a career highlight. Photo: Lennart Ootes/FIDE.

    In an emotional interview post-match, Bodnaruk said the following: “Humpy played better than me, but I played faster. This was my way to success.” With the blitz event forthcoming, the newly crowned rapid champion has inadvertently announced herself as a contender for the quicker time control.

    The FIDE World Rapid Championship is an over-the-board event that determines the FIDE World Rapid open and women’s champions. The event starts on December 26 at 5 a.m. ET/11:00 CET/3:30 p.m. IST and features a $500,000 prize fund.

    The current rapid and blitz chess champion Carlsen will attempt to defend his titles in a stacked field including Nepomniachtchi, Duda, Vachier-Lagrave, Caruana, and many more 2700+ players.

    Previous coverage

    Source link

    Latest articles


    Related articles