The Modern Immortal By Wei Yi
On March 1, 2013, at the age of 13 years and 8 months, Chinese super-talent Wei Yi earned his final grandmaster norm at the Reykjavik Open. I was deeply impressed by his games from the event, especially by his 33-move victory against Maxime Vachier-Lagrave in round eight.
A fine achievement to be sure, but merely a portent of things to come. Two years later, Wei broke 2700, becoming the youngest player in history to earn the informal title of super grandmaster. His style is perfectly suited to the demands of modern chess: a dangerous opening repertoire, fine positional understanding, tenacity (both physical and mental), and — perhaps most impressive — otherworldly tactical ability.
In this article, I would like to celebrate this shining star of elite chess by examining his recent victory against Cuban GM Lázaro Bruzón Batista, a game that has since been referred to as the 21st-century immortal. Does this game deserve such a lofty distinction? Well, I guess you'll have to read on to find out!
Although the game is still floating in theoretical waters, Wei Yi has definitely won the opening battle. The plan with ...Rad8 and ...Rd7 does not satisfy the needs of the position, but — for the moment — the seas are still calm.
Things have gone from bad to worse for Bruzon, but Black is still very much alive...or so it seems.
What needs to be said?
The King Hunt
As much as I enjoy positional chess, I must admit that a combination of this sort is the one and only definition of true beauty in chess. Whether or not Wei Yi-Bruzon will be remembered as the modern immortal is a question that I leave up to you
Be sure to also read Chess.com journalist Peter Dogger's full report on this amazing game.