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Kramnik wins the third London Classic

A draw was enough to ensure first place for Vladimir Kramnik. The only winner in the final round was Hikaru Nakamura who beat the out-of-sorts Michael Adams in the most complicated struggle of the day. The American thus moves up to second place ahead of Magnus Carlsen. The leading English player, and the only one to gain rating points, was Luke McShane in fourth.

Showing his intention to complicate, Hikaru Nakamura played the King's Gambit! Michael Adams accepted the offer, but gave back a central pawn in order to complete his development in peace. There then followed a complex middlegame in which both players had chances. The assymetric pawns, where White had a central majority and Black extra pawns on both wings, created many interesting options for both players. The breath-taking middlegame pawn race was won by a whisker by the American, thus enabling him to make it to second place.

Nigel Short decided to play very conservatively against Magnus Carlsen. The symmetric Giuoco Piano (Quiet Italian) can be very dry indeed, although both players sought winning chances. A positional pawn sacrifice by Short to break up Black's pawns paid off as he won a pawn. However the rook endgame with all the pawns on one wing was drawn.

Luke McShane handled Anand's Caro-Kann in an equally solid way and although the Englishman had the bishop pair, he was unable to make any progress against Anand's well installed defence.

The game between Vladimir Kramnik and Levon Aronian left White with a nominal edge (Black had an isolated queen's pawn for a while and arguably the worst bishop). However at this level this wasn't enough to cause Black any difficulties.

The ninth round:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 0.5-0.5 Levon Aronian ARM 2802 32 Queen's Gambit Declined (5.Bf4)
Nigel Short ENG 2698 0.5-0.5 Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 77 Giuoco Piano
Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 1-0 Michael Adams ENG 2734  41 King's Gambit Accepted
Luke McShane ENG 2671 0.5-0.5 Viswanathan Anand IND 2811 25 Caro-Kann (Two Knights)

David Howell (England, 2633) sat out the final round whilst helping out with the live commentary.

Here is the final table:

Rank Name Country Rating 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

Total

(3, 1, 0)

Total

(standard)

1 Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 1 1 16 6
2 Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 ½ * 0 ½ 1 1 ½ 1 1 15
3 Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 ½ 1 * ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 1 14
4 Luke McShane ENG 2671 0 ½ ½ * ½ ½ 1 1 1 13 5
5 Levon Aronian ARM 2802 ½ 0 ½ ½ * ½ 1 ½ ½ 9 4
6 Viswanathan Anand IND 2811 ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ * 1 ½ ½ 9 4
7 Nigel Short ENG 2698 0 ½ ½ 0 0 0 * ½ 1 6
8 David Howell ENG 2633 0 0 0 0 ½ ½ ½ * ½  4 2
9 Michael Adams ENG 2734 0 0 0 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ * 3

Further statistics:

Position

Name

Country

Rating

(1/11/2011)

World Ranking

(1/11/2011)

Age

Games

played

London

Points

Standard

points

Elo

+/-

1

Vladimir Kramnik

RUS

2800

4

36 7 16 6 +13.6
2

Hikaru Nakamura 

USA

2758 10 24 7 15 +13.4
3

Magnus Carlsen

NOR

2826

1

21

7 14 +5.4
4

Luke McShane 

ENG 2671 74 27

7

13 5 +19.6
5-6

Levon Aronian

ARM 2802 3 29 7 9 4 -6.4
5-6

Viswanathan Anand

IND

2811

2 42 7 9 4 -8
7

Nigel Short

ENG 2698 48 46 7 6 -8.6
8

David Howell

ENG 2633 139 21 8 4 2 -5.6
9

Michael Adams

ENG 2734 17 40 7 3 -23.4

There were 3 points for a win and 1 for a draw in London.

Big ELO gains for Kramnik and Nakamura and of course McShane.

Five of the nine players lost rating points, the most significant deficit being that of being Michael Adams.

The details of the earlier rounds follow on below.

First round:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 0.5-0.5 Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 45 Catalan with ...dxc4
Levon Aronian ARM 2802 0.5-0.5 Luke McShane ENG 2671 42 Chebanenko Slav
Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 1-0 David Howell ENG 2633 40 Spanish with d3
Michael Adams ENG 2734 0.5-0.5 Viswanathan Anand IND 2811 49 Sicilian Najdorf

Second round:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
Nigel Short ENG 2698 0-1 Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 43 Four Knights Rubinstein
Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 1-0 Levon Aronian ARM 2802 54 Queen's Gambit 3...Be7
Luke McShane ENG 2671 0.5-0.5 Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 79 Spanish Neo-Archangel
David Howell ENG 2633 0.5-0.5 Michael Adams ENG 2734 35 Spanish Anti-Marshall

Third round:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
Levon Aronian ARM 2802 1-0 Nigel Short ENG 2698 60 Queen's Indian Defence
Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 1-0 Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 41 Quiet Italian
Michael Adams ENG 2734 0-1 Luke McShane ENG 2671 61 Spanish with d3
Viswanathan Anand IND 2811 0.5-0.5 David Howell ENG 2633 65 Slav Defence

Fourth round:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
Michael Adams ENG 2734 0-1 Nigel Short ENG 2698 71 French Tarrasch
Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 0.5-0.5 Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 55 Nimzoindian with g3.
David Howell ENG 2633 0-1 Luke McShane ENG 2671 37 Scotch Opening
Viswanathan Anand IND 2811 0-1 Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 49 King's Indian Classical Bayonnet

Fifth round:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 1-0 Michael Adams ENG 2734 55 Bogoljubov Defence
Levon Aronian ARM 2802 0.5-0.5 Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 55 Chebanenko Slav
Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 1-0 David Howell ENG 2633 38 English Opening
Nigel Short  ENG 2698 0-1 Viswanathan Anand IND 2811 62 Sicilian Moscow Variation

Sixth round:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
Viswanathan Anand IND 2811 0.5-0.5 Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 39 Queen's Gambit Declined 5.Bf4
Michael Adams ENG 2734 0.5-0.5 Levon Aronian ARM 2802 34 Spanish Berlin
Luke McShane ENG 2671 0.5-0.5 Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 31 Sicilian 3.g3
David Howell ENG 2633  0.5-0.5 Nigel Short ENG 2698 36 French Tarrasch

Seventh round:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
Levon Aronian ARM 2802 0.5-0.5 Viswanathan Anand IND 2811 25 Queen's Gambit Declined 5.Bf4
Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 1-0 Michael Adams ENG 2734 34 Nimzoindian Defence
Nigel Short ENG 2698 0-1 Luke McShane ENG 2671 36 King's Gambit
Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 1-0 David Howell ENG 2633 36 Queen's Gambit Accepted

Eighth round:

White Country Rating Result Black Country Rating Moves Opening details
David Howell ENG 2633 0.5-0.5 Levon Aronian ARM 2802 54 Pirc Defence (Austrian)
Viswanathan Anand IND 2811 0.5-0.5 Magnus Carlsen NOR 2826 33 Queen's Gambit Declined (Tartakower)
Hikaru Nakamura USA 2758 0.5-0.5 Nigel Short ENG 2698 90 English Opening
Luke McShane ENG 2671 0-1 Vladimir Kramnik RUS 2800 69 Spanish with d3

More information from the official site: http://www.londonchessclassic.com/classic.htm


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