Anand v Giri

The game between Anish Giri of the Netherlands and Viswanathan Anand of India started out somewhat promising in a Queen’s Gambit Declined. But a quick series of exchanges reduced it to a symmetrical pawn structure in which neither player had any possibility of an advantage. They agreed to a draw on Move 31. 


Karjakin v Aronian

An interesting game between the co-leaders, Sergey Karjakin of Russia and Levon Aronian of Armenia, ended in a draw. Karjakin chose a King’s Indian Attack and Aronian responded with a strange idea 6. … a5 and 7. … a4. Karjakin went for an attack with Ng5 and Qh5, but Aronian repulsed it rather easily and then counterattacked. It seemed for a moment that Karjakin might be in trouble, but Aronian’s counterattack was premature and Karjakin found enough counterplay to hold the balance. The players agreed to a draw after only 31 moves, but it was a sharp battle. 


Topalov v Nakamura

The game between Hikaru Nakamura of the United States and Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria turned into a tactical slugfest as Topalov sacrificed a piece to launch a speculative attack against Nakamura’s king. Though the tactics were tricky and Topalov had some chances if Nakamura did not find all the correct moves, but he did and eventually Topalov simply ran out of ammunition and resigned as he was down a piece with no compensation.


Svidler v Caruana

The last game of the day to finish between Peter Svidler of Russia and Fabiano Caruana of the United States ended in a draw, which was a disappointment for Svidler and a huge relief for Caruana based on how the game unfolded. Svidler launched a dangerous attack and conducted it superbly. Caruana managed to survive to an endgame, but it should have been easy to convert for a win. But as so often happens in chess, things are never as easy they seem. Caruana kept throwing up obstacles and Svidler lost his way, finally acquiescing to a draw. Caruana has now drawn all his games, while Svidler is on -1. 


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