Caruana v Aronian
Levon Aronian of Armenia drew his game against Fabiano Caruana of the United States in Round 5 by a perpetual attack on Caruana’s queen. Caruana employed the Benoni Defense in the opening, which is not often seen in elite tournaments. Aronian soon obtained a nice position wth more space in the center. But rather than improve his position slowly, he sacrificed a pawn in the center to start an attack. He soon gave up two other pawns to switch his bishop to the kingside to attack Caruana. Caruana evidently calculated that he could not allow Aronian to play Nf6, so he attacked Aronian’s undefended rook on e1, leading to a perpetual.
Karjakin v Topalov
The game between the leader, Sergey Karjakin of Russia, and the tail-ender, Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria, was the longest of the day. Topalov had his moments, but only a post-mortem will tell if he missed something clear. The players drew in a position in which there was still plenty of play left.
Anand v Nakamura
The game between Viswanathan Anand of India and Hikaru Nakamura of the United States ended in a fairly quick draw. The opening was a Berlin Defense and Anand, who was White, tried 4. d3, but he got no advantage whatsoever. A quick series of exchanges sapped whatever potential tension there might have been in the position. In the end, Anand forced a perpetual check. He is now at 50 percent (2.5 points), while Nakamura has 2.
Svidler v Giri
Anish Giri of the Netherlands and Peter Svidler drew their game by perpetual in 30 moves, marking the third game of the day that ended by repetition and on Move 30. In the opening, Svidler uncorked 7. … a5. It was not clear if it was home preparation as he took a while on it. Whether inspiration at the board or otherwise, it gave him a decent game. There were some interesting moments, but the balance never seemed to be disturbed before the players decided to repeat the position.
The full games and PGN files can be found at www.worldchess.com