Few weeks before the world championship in chess begins, the challenger performs at his best. The Norwegian player, who wants to take Visvanathan Anand’s world championship title, recently won a world-class tournament in St. Louis.
Four leading players of the world participating
The Sinquefield Cup in St. Louis was a tournament with only a small starting field which was extraordinarily strong. Only four players participated in the event. Next to the world’s number 1 from Norway Magnus Carlsen (Elo 2862), the runner-up Levon Aronian (Elo 2813), and the two best US-American players Hikaru Nakamura (9th / Elo 2772) and Gata Kamsky (16th / Elo 2741) were invited. The tournament was played in six rounds, so that each player faced the same opponent twice. The four players shared prize money that amounted to $170,000 of which the winner received $70,000, the runner-up $50,000, the 3rd $30,000, and the 4th $20,000.
Magnus Carlsen wins with one point advantage
In the end, the favorite player Magnus Carlsen triumphed at 4.5 points out of 6 duels. Second place was taken by Nakamura with a score of 3.5 out of six rounds. Levon Aronian had to be content with 3rd rank with only 2.5 points. At the bottom of the ranking was, as expected, Gata Kamsky. With three draws and three defeats he only gained 1.5 points.
The duels of St. Louis in detail
Magnus Carlsen put in full power from the first duel and instantly came off winner in the match against Gata Kamsky, while Nakamura surprisingly prevailed over the World’s number 2 from Armenia in his first duel. In the second round, Carlsen and Aronian met for the top-duel of the event which ended in a draw and Nakamura beat his fellow countryman. The third round ended in two draws, just like the fifth. In between, Carlsen again won against Gata Kamsky, while Aronian won the return match against Nakamura. In the final round of the Sinquefield Cup in St. Louis, the matches of the world’s two best players, according to the FIDE world rankings, ended in a draw as well as the duel between the two best American players.
Picture: flickr.com / Frans Peeters
written by Michael, translated by Birthe