In fact Yannick Pelletier's king was so open it felt that Vachier-Lagrave could play with the draw in hand, although it seemed to casula observers that he almost lost control at one point. The combined attacking power of rook and queen was eventually too much for the Swiss star to cope with.
The Vienna variation was a sharp choice by Morozevich, who really needed to win if he was to win the event, but it is also quite theoretical and many lines have been well-analyzed until late in the game. Simplification towards a rook endgame led to a draw, which leaves Carlsen on top of the tournament table.
Alexei Shirov outplayed Fabiano Caruana and was on top for most of the game. His two-bishop pressure netted him a pawn and then it was a question of trying to break down Caruana's fortress in the Knight versus bishop endgame. He was able to invade by 'dodging and weaving' with his king, when a route finally became available.
The round 8 summary:
|Maxime Vachier-Lagrave||2722||1-0||Yannick Pelletier||2590||43||French Rubinstein|
|Magnus Carlsen||2821||½-½||Alexander Morozevich||2694||35||Queen's Gambit Vienna|
|Fabiano Caruana||2711||0-1||Alexei Shirov||2714||82||French Tarrasch|
The standings after round 8:
The classification according to the Biel points (3 for a win, 1 for a draw) is as follows:
The rate of play: