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Vugar Gashimov Memorial 2014 (8)

Carlsen's closest challenger is now Caruana after Gashimov Memorial Round 8

Fabiano Caruana won in round 8 against Teimour Radjabov replacing him in second place. Photo ©

Fabiano Caruana won in round 8 against Teimour Radjabov replacing him in second place. Photo © | http://shamkirchess.az

The eighth round of the Gashimov Memorial saw two decisive games, neither of which involved Magnus Carlsen. Carlsen was outprepared by Sergey Karjakin (as acknowledged by his second Peter Heine Nielsen) and his only planned try 16.Nd4 was Carlsen's didn't work when he got there, at least for an advantage and the game fizzled to a draw.

Teimour Radjabov was surprisingly feisty in the press conference for his loss to Fabiano Caruana. He admitted that he'd completely overestimated his chances and he should have shown more care and played 31...Qg7 when a draw was the likely result. As it was a combination of a horribly difficult position and time pressure caused his defeat. Nevertheless I think for the first time since the 2013 Candidates we saw maybe why Radjabov was solid top four, sparky combative variations and some aggression and self confidence, if you ask me, I think he's over the worst and will be back into the top 10 before too long. Caruana played it nicely today and took over from Radjabov as Carlsen's closest challenger half a point back from him.

Hikaru Nakamura beat a struggling Shakhriyar Mamedyarov who got into a mess in the opening. Mamedyarov found the spectacular 24.Rxe6 but in spite of the shock value black was still better and Nakamura quickly achieved a winning advantage.

Round 8 Standings: Carlsen 5pts, Caruana 4.5pts, Karjakin, Radjabov, Nakamura 4pts, Mamedyarov 2.5pts

Round 9 Pairings Tues 29th April 2014: Caruana-Mamedyarov, Radjabov-Carlsen, Karjakin-Nakamura

I will be in commentary on ICC on Tuesday with GM Larry Christiansen 11am BST, free to watch at: http://www.twitch.tv/internetchessclub looking forward to it.

Nakamura beat Mamedyarov

Nakamura beat Mamedyarov in round 8. Photo © http://www.shamkirchess.az.

Vugar Gashimov Mem 2014 Shamkir AZE (AZE), 19-30 iv 2014 cat. XXII (2780)
1 2 3 4 5 6
1. Carlsen, Magnus g NOR 2881 * * 0 . ½ ½ 0 . 1 1 1 1 5 2858
2. Caruana, Fabiano g ITA 2783 1 . * * ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 0 . 2812
3. Karjakin, Sergey g RUS 2772 ½ ½ ½ ½ * * ½ ½ ½ . ½ . 4 2785
4. Radjabov, Teimour g AZE 2713 1 . ½ 0 ½ ½ * * ½ . ½ ½ 4 2785
5. Nakamura, Hikaru g USA 2772 0 0 ½ ½ ½ . ½ . * * 1 1 4 2791
6. Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar g AZE 2760 0 0 1 . ½ . ½ ½ 0 0 * * 2644
Round 8 (April 28, 2014)
Carlsen, Magnus - Karjakin, Sergey ½-½ 38 E15 Queens Indian
Caruana, Fabiano - Radjabov, Teimour 1-0 52 E92 King's Indian Classical
Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar - Nakamura, Hikaru 0-1 47 D11 Slav Defence
Vugar Gashimov Mem B 2014 Shamkir AZE (AZE), 19-30 iv 2014 cat. XVII (2663)
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0
1. Eljanov, Pavel g UKR 2732 * 0 1 1 ½ 1 . ½ ½ 1 2813
2. Wang, Hao g CHN 2734 1 * ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ . 0 ½ 2706
3. Wojtaszek, Radoslaw g POL 2716 0 ½ * ½ 1 ½ ½ ½ . 1 2699
4. Bacrot, Etienne g FRA 2722 0 ½ ½ * 0 1 ½ 1 1 . 2699
5. Motylev, Alexander g RUS 2685 ½ 0 0 1 * . ½ ½ 1 1 2708
6. Guseinov, Gadir g AZE 2621 0 ½ ½ 0 . * 1 1 ½ ½ 4 2665
7. Abasov, Nijat g AZE 2516 . ½ ½ ½ ½ 0 * ½ ½ ½ 2629
8. Durarbayli, Vasif g AZE 2584 ½ . ½ 0 ½ 0 ½ * 1 ½ 2620
9. Mamedov, Rauf g AZE 2660 ½ 1 . 0 0 ½ ½ 0 * ½ 3 2569
10. Safarli, Eltaj g AZE 2656 0 ½ 0 . 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ * 2515
Round 8 (April 28, 2014)
Eljanov, Pavel - Guseinov, Gadir 1-0 48 E94 King's Indian Classical
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw - Abasov, Nijat ½-½ 28 E21 Nimzo Indian 4.Nf3
Motylev, Alexander - Bacrot, Etienne 1-0 46 C67 Ruy Lopez Berlin
Durarbayli, Vasif - Mamedov, Rauf 1-0 31 B78 Sicilian Modern Dragon
Safarli, Eltaj - Wang, Hao ½-½ 41 B90 Sicilian Najdorf Variation

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