Magnus Carlsen showed his class on the first two days of the “Festa da Uva” chess festival in Caxias do Sul, Brazil. On Thursday the World Champion won a four-player double round robin with five wins and one draw. On Saturday he won the knockout phase, beating Rodriguez Vila 1.5-0.5 in the semi-final and Gilberto Milos 2-0 in the final.
As you know, Magnus Carlsen is in Brazil this week. On Thursday, March 6th in the morning the Norwegian started with a blindfold simul against four visually impaired chess players. He won the match 3.5-0.5, allowing a draw against the Brazilian Champion in Blindfold Chess.
Shaking a world-famous right-hand
Carlsen playing blindfold, announcing his moves using a mic
The opponents were obviously allowed to touch the pieces - Carlsen wasn't ;-)
The main event on Thursday and Friday was a a four-player round robin rapid chess tournament with, besides Carlsen, Rafael Leitao (2645, reigning champion of Brazil), Gilberto Milos (2583, 6-times Brazilian Champion) and Andrés Rodríguez Vila (2437, the best player from Uruguay in history). The time control was 16 minutes per game during the first half, and 5 minutes per game during the second.
Let's look at some of Carlsen's games. In the first round he won against Rafael Leitao as Black in a Slav with 4...Bg4. He threw in some nice tactics just after White had played the e3-e4 break:
The games were played in a small glass cabin
Gilberto Milos played an excellent game and held the draw from the black side of a Scotch:
After an easy win against Andres Rodriguez Vila, Carlsen slowly outplayed Leitao in a 2.b3 Sicilian. The final position is hopeless with the a5-pawn also dropping.
In the last two games we saw the endgame skills of the world champ once again:
II “Recreio da Juventude” GM Chess Tournament | Round robin
In the semi-finals Carlsen beat Rodriguez Vila 1.5-0.5. The first game was a complete crush and a nice demonstration of how one can meet the Dutch Defense when starting with 1.Nf3.
In the final Carlsen beat Milos twice and again in endings:
On Thursday Carlsen also gave a lecture about his path towards the world title, and on Friday he gave simul at a shopping mall.
Lots of players and even more spectators
A floor like a chess board
That rare chance to see a World Champ in Brazil
On Saturday and Sunday Carlsen participates in a 9-round Swiss rapid event where his biggest rivals are his good friend and travel companion Peter Heine Nielsen (Denmark), Sergey Tiviakov (Netherlands), Rafael Leitao (Brazil), Sam Shankland (USA), Henrique Mecking (Brasil), Neuris Delgado Ramirez (Paraguay), Sandro Mareco (Argentina), Gilberto Milos (Brasil), Ruben Felgaer (Argentina) and Krikor Sevag Mekhitarian (full list here).
Games thanks to TWIC; info thanks to Marcos Bueno.