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Bilbao Masters Final 2010 (2)

Kramnik on 100% Carlsen crashes again

Carlsen - Anand Round 2. Photo © Fred Lucas.

Carlsen - Anand Round 2. Photo © Fred Lucas. |

Vladimir Kramnik has started with two wins and six points after beating Alexei Shirov in Round 2. World Champion Viswanathan Anand beat World Number One Magnus Carlsen. Carlsen is on a huge slump with three Olympiad losses and now two at the start of this event and will lose his number one status to Anand if things don't change fast. Report is the official press release. Four new Fred Lucas Photos.

The Stage. Photo © Fred Lucas 2010

Kramnik conquers the Spaniard while Anand defeats Norway's Carlsen.

Results of the second day of the 3rd Grand Slam Chess Masters Final. Sunday October 10:

Leader Vladimir Kramnik. Photo © Fred Lucas 2010

Kramnik (Russia) - Shírov (Spain). 3-0. 41 moves, 2 hours 40 minutes of play

Carlsen (Norway) - Anand (India). 0-3. 45 moves, 3 hours 10 minutes of play

The Russian presented his credentials for the title at the Grand Slam Masters Final on its second day today, Sunday, in Bilbao. His victory over Shirov, together with yesterday's against Carlsen, places him at the top of the leaderboard with six points, since, according to the “Bilbao rules”, each victory earns a player three points. For his part, Anand was able to avoid straying too far from top spot when he beat Norway's Magnus Carlsen, who has suffered his second defeat and who, if he continues along this path, could even put his number 1 spot in the world ranking at risk.

Alexei Shirov against Viswanathan Anand. Photo © 2010

In the first game, the Norwegian Magnus Carlsen, world number one, faced off against current World Champion Viswanathan Anand. The player from India repeated the Berlin variation, but on this occasion Carlsen did not play the most critical lines and opted for an apparently calm variation, constantly reorganising his pieces. Anand maneuvered skillfully, liquidating the central pawn structure at exactly the right moment and, through a precise sequence, took the initiative. In this final phase, Carlsen, sacrificed a piece in order to set up a strong advanced pawn on “b6” but despite eventually being promoted, and following the forced captures that took place, the resulting position was hopeless for him since his knight remained trapped on the edge of the board. Defenceless against the Indian player's pieces. This was an excellent victory for Anand with black, that left Magnus on the edge of oblivion in the tournament.

Kramnik talks about his win. Photo © Fred Lucas 2010

In the other game, tournament leader Vladimir Kramnik played again as white, just like yesterday, this time against Alexei Shirov. The latter varied his usual choice of opening, perhaps because Kramnik defeated him a week ago in the Olympiad, in the match between Russia and Spain. In this case, white played a typical isolated queen's pawn position that gamve the white pieces activity in exchange for an inferior pawn structure in the long run. Shirov played an interesting pawn sacrifice in the middle-game but in its execution he omitted a strong move (Nd5), threatening various pieces. Kramnik was able to win the exchange, a rook for a bishop, ending up afterwards with a technical win. This was Kramnik's second victory, and he has now presented his credentials for the title and is in enviable form.

Grand Slam Final Masters Bilbao (ESP), 2010.10.09 - 2010.09.15
Round 2 Standings:
Name Ti FED Elo + = - Pts Gms
Kramnik, Vladimir GM RUS 2780 2 0 0 6 2
Anand, Viswanathan GM IND 2800 1 1 0 4 2
Shirov, Alexei GM ESP 2749 0 1 1 1 2
Carlsen, Magnus GM NOR 2826 0 0 2 0 2

Magnus Carlsen loses to Viswanathan Anand. Photo © Fred Lucas 2010

The points system of the Grand Slam Masters Final is 3 points for each win, 1 for a draw and 0 for a loss, a system known as the “Bilbao rules”.

The pairings for Sunday, are: Shirov-Carlsen and Anand-Kramnik.

Press Release Bilbao, October , 2010

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