Round 10 - World Champion Magnus Carlsen takes the sole lead after beating Anand
Today the Masters participants set out for Leiden, where the second Tata Steel Chess on Tour round was played in the stunning Pieterskerk (St. Peter’s Church).
It seems like the players were inspired by their new surroundings as we not only got to witness the most spectacular round of the event to date, but also one of the most decisive ones, with no less than 5 winners! The first player to draw blood was Vidit, who took advantage of Kramnik confusing his analyses to conclude his miniature with the beautiful 29.Qf4!, forcing resignation as mate is inevitable. However, that beautiful move was soon outshone by Richard Rapport’s stunning 37…Rc8!, which was hailed by some as an early contender for move of the year! This victory over Duda is Rapport’s first win of the event and it takes him to 4.5/10. Next up was yet another double victory for the two Dutch players in the field as Anish Giri outplayed Fedoseev and Jorden Van Foreest played an exciting attacking game to take down Nepomniachtchi. Last but certainly not least, the clash between World Champion Magnus Carlsen and his predecessor Vishy Anand had everyone on the edge of their seats until well past 8pm, when the Norwegian converted his pawn advantage in a knight ending in typical Carlsen style to take the sole lead of the tournament on 7/10. Giri trails him by half a point and Nepomiachtchi, Anand and Ding share third place on 6/10.
Meanwhile back in Wijk aan Zee it was a day of big reversals, as both the tournament leader Maksim Chigaev (against Praggnanandhaa) and his pursuer Vladislav Kovalev (against Keymer) turned losing positions into wins. The other pursuer, Andrey Esipenko, inflicted a second consecutive loss on Lucas Van Foreest to, together with Kovalev, remain half a point behind Chigaev, who leads on 7.5/10. There was also a fourth decisive game, in which Maghsoodloo beat Bareev.
Tomorrow is the final rest day before the action resumes on Friday 25 January with round 11.