Carlsen Also Beats Nakamura in Shamkir | Update: VIDEO

  • PeterDoggers
  • on 4/21/14, 9:32 AM.

Magnus Carlsen also won his second game in Shamkir, Azerbaijan. On Monday the Norwegian defeated Hikaru Nakamura and increased his lead in the Shamkir Chess 2014 tournament's A group to a full point. Sergey Karjakin quickly equalized against Fabiano Caruana in a Berlin Ending while Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teimour Radjabov split the point in a Semi-Slav, Meran. In group B Pavel Eljanov, Alexander Motylev and Etienne Bacrot won their black games against Radek Wojtaszek, Rauf Mamedov and Vasif Durarbayli respectively.

It was the World Champion who again dominated the headlines on Monday as once more he was the only player to win in the A group of the Shamkir Chess 2014 tournament. Magnus Carlsen got a minimal edge out of the opening (a Chebanenko Slav) against Hikaru Nakamura and maintained that small advantage until move 33, when the American GM committed a big mistake. He lost a pawn, and then another one.

Update: video report of round 2

“I think I was a little bit better from the opening and then he started to go wrong a bit before the time control for him. After that I was basically two pawns up but he kept on fighting after the time control,” said Carlsen, who was then interrupted by his opponent at the press conference.

“I think Black should be completely fine but somehow I got it all wrong,” said Nakamura about the position after move 30. “White is probably a bit better but I find it hard to believe that this should be anything, any big advantage,” he added, and Carlsen agreed.

Black lost two pawns, and although there was little hope, Nakamura fought on. “I tried to find some lines but Magnus found the best moves and then there's not much you can do.”

In the final phase of the game Carlsen had a remarkable pose behind the board, having his left leg hanging over his armrest. Instantly it became a topic of discussion in the Twittersphere.

Carlsen about appearing very relaxed and comfortable: “It wasn't that comfortable, I had to work hard today. I've been lucky enough to start with two white games. I guess now I'll have a couple of black games in a row and it's probably gonna be tougher. It's a very good start. I'm happy about that, I'm happy about my play, but my mindset going into the next games is not different from before the tournament, I have to keep playing well.”

After this game Carlsen reached another all-time high in the live ratings: 2889.2. Chess fans and journalists already started discussing what it takes for him to reach the next milestone, 2900. The answer is 8.5/10, which will put him on 2900,7. But the tournament is far from over yet!

Carlsen now on 2889.2

Carlsen's lead in the tournament increased to a point as both the other two games ended in draws. Fabiano Caruana vs. Sergey Karjakin was a short affair as White got nothing in a Berlin Ending. By now that's a separate opening, as Karjakin suggested: “It wasn't really Spanish, it was a Berlin. There's a big difference!”

The draw between the two Azeri grandmasters was more interesting. After playing the French on Sunday, Teimour Radjabov again surprised with his opening choice: the Semi-Slav. It's clear that Radjabov has worked hard for this tournament. 

Caught off guard, Shakhriyar Mamedyarov decided to go for healthy moves. “After yesterday's loss I didn't want to fall in some home preparation, so I tried to do my best and play  a very solid opening.”

His 15th move turned out to be the novelty, but it wasn't very dangerous, as Radjabov showed in the game. His ...c6-c5 push was an excellent pawn sacrifice that solved Black's problems almost instantly.

The B group saw two draws and three wins, all scored by Black. Alexander Motylev played an excellent game against Rauf Mamedov, whose 6.a4 against the Najdorf wasn't very successful.

Strong play by the European Champion

Pavel Eljanov defeated Radek Wojtaszek in a rook ending where his rook was very passive, but his king very active. 

Vasif Durarbayli again made a good impression in his game with Etienne Bacrot. He played well in the opening and then tried the interesting push e5-e6 on move 20. With other moves he might have kept his advantage, but the move is hard to resist!

Bacrot started to play well from that point, and chances were about equal until both players were low on time. “We try to avoid time trouble but when the game is so complicated, what to do?” said Bacrot, who found a nice refutation of White's second e5-e6 move!

Etienne Bacrot was the first to reach 1.5/2

Shamkir Chess 2014 | A | Pairings & results

Round 1 20.04.14 15:00 AZST   Round 6 26.04.14 15:00 AZST
Carlsen 1-0 Mamedyarov   Mamedyarov - Carlsen
Nakamura ½-½ Caruana   Caruana - Nakamura
Karjakin ½-½ Radjabov   Radjabov - Karjakin
Round 2 21.04.14 15:00 AZST   Round 7 27.04.14 15:00 AZST
Mamedyarov ½-½ Radjabov   Radjabov - Mamedyarov
Caruana ½-½ Karjakin   Karjakin - Caruana
Carlsen 1-0 Nakamura   Nakamura - Carlsen
Round 3 22.04.14 15:00 AZST   Round 8 28.04.14 15:00 AZST
Nakamura - Mamedyarov   Mamedyarov - Nakamura
Karjakin - Carlsen   Carlsen - Karjakin
Radjabov - Caruana   Caruana - Radjabov
Round 4 23.04.14 15:00 AZST   Round 9 29.04.14 15:00 AZST
Karjakin - Mamedyarov   Caruana - Mamedyarov
Radjabov - Nakamura   Radjabov - Carlsen
Caruana - Carlsen   Karjakin - Nakamura
Round 5 24.04.14 15:00 AZST   Round 10 30.04.14 13:00 AZST
Mamedyarov - Caruana   Mamedyarov - Karjakin
Carlsen - Radjabov   Nakamura - Radjabov
Nakamura - Karjakin   Carlsen - Caruana

Shamkir Chess 2014 | A | Round 2 Standings

# Name Rtg Perf 1 2 3 4 5 6 Pts SB
1 Carlsen,Magnus 2881 3566 1 1 2.0/2
2 Karjakin,Sergey 2772 2748 ½ ½ 1.0/2 1.00
3 Caruana,Fabiano 2783 2772 ½ ½ 1.0/2 0.75
4 Radjabov,Teimour 2713 2766 ½ ½ 1.0/2 0.75
5 Nakamura,Hikaru 2772 2642 0 ½ 0.5/2 0.50
6 Mamedyarov,Shakhriyar 2760 2607 0 ½ 0.5/2 0.50

Shamkir Chess 2014 | B | Pairings & results

Round 1 20.04.14 15:00 AZST   Round 2 21.04.14 15:00 AZST
Wojtaszek ½-½ Durarbayli   Durarbayli 0-1 Bacrot
Eljanov ½-½ Mamedov   Huseinov ½-½ Wang Hao
Motylev ½-½ Abasov   Abasov ½-½ Safarli
Safarli ½-½ Huseinov   Mamedov 0-1 Motylev
Wang Hao ½-½ Bacrot   Wojtaszek 0-1 Eljanov
Round 3 22.04.14 15:00 AZST   Round 4 23.04.14 15:00 AZST
Eljanov - Durarbayli   Durarbayli - Huseinov
Motylev - Wojtaszek   Abasov - Bacrot
Safarli - Mamedov   Mamedov - Wang Hao
Wang Hao - Abasov   Wojtaszek - Safarli
Bacrot - Huseinov   Eljanov - Motylev
Round 5 24.04.14 15:00 CET   Round 6 26.04.14 15:00 AZST
Motylev - Durarbayli   Durarbayli - Abasov
Safarli - Eljanov   Mamedov - Huseinov
Wang Hao - Wojtaszek   Wojtaszek - Bacrot
Bacrot - Mamedov   Eljanov - Wang Hao
Huseinov   Abasov   Motylev - Safarli
Round 7 27.04.14 15:00 CET   Round 8 28.04.14 15:00 AZST
Safarli - Durarbayli   Durarbayli - Mamedov
Wang Hao - Motylev   Wojtaszek - Abasov
Bacrot - Eljanov   Eljanov - Huseinov
Huseinov - Wojtaszek   Motylev - Bacrot
Abasov - Mamedov   Safarli - Wang Hao
Round 9 29.04.14 15:00 AZST        
Wang Hao - Durarbayli        
Bacrot - Safarli        
Huseinov - Motylev        
Abasov - Eljanov        
Mamedov - Wojtaszek        

Shamkir Chess 2014 | B | Pairings & results

# Name Rtg Perf 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 Pts SB
1 Bacrot,Etienne 2722 2849 ½ 1 1.5/2 1.00
2 Motylev,Alexander 2685 2778 ½ 1 1.5/2 1.00
3 Eljanov,Pavel 2732 2878 ½ 1 1.5/2 0.75
4 Wang,Hao 2734 2672 ½ ½ 1.0/2 1.25
5 Abasov,Nijat 2516 2670 ½ ½ 1.0/2 1.25
6 Safarli,Eltaj 2656 2569 ½ ½ 1.0/2 1.00
7 Guseinov,Gadir 2621 2695 ½ ½ 1.0/2 1.00
8 Mamedov,Rauf 2660 2518 0 ½ 0.5/2 0.75
9 Wojtaszek,Radoslaw 2716 2468 0 ½ 0.5/2 0.25
10 Durarbayli,Vasif 2584 2529 0 ½ 0.5/2 0.25

The rounds start at 12:00 Amsterdam, 6am New York and 3am Los Angeles time. The official website is offers daily live commentary at Games via TWIC

23138 reads 65 comments
4 votes


  • 3 years ago


    Looking forward to see Nakamura winning Group B tournaments in the future.

  • 3 years ago


    I feel like the poses were to embarres Nakamura for remarks he made earlier this year to show Naka he's not worried about him but that's just me

  • 3 years ago


    Where is this guy´s limit? Carlsen vs Nakamura:

  • 3 years ago


    Carlsen's pref rating after 2 games, 3566... Money Mouth

  • 3 years ago


    Magnus Carlsen is The Eddie Merckx of Chess. The Cannibal , the man who wins all tournaments and leaves nothing to the others. The other top GMs must improve their game. We will see incredible chess in the next years.

  • 3 years ago


    I have a feeling that chess will soon become boring. With no competition at all!!! Congrats to Magnus!!

  • 3 years ago


    I actually enjoy Nakamura quite a lot and generally root for him, but this result made me smile. It seems that Naka is a bit of a glutton for punishment when it comes to Carlsen, you know? I imagine little Carlsen heads floating around in his nightmares, with that sour 'g-star raw' expression. The law of averages suggests that someday he will finally catch a break and that will be the happiest day of his life.

    There was a terribly funny moment in the press conference when a reporter asked Carlsen whether he thought of Nakamura as his toughest opponent, and Carlsen literally said "umm... ummmmm" for like ten seconds, before basically saying that he can beat everyone these days so it doesn't matter. Naka got the tiniest, weirdest little smile.

  • 3 years ago


    Carlsen, doing what he does best ... winning.  :)

    Perhaps it would be best if Nakamura took a bit of a break from dishing Magnus; at least until after he actually wins a game against him ....  :p

  • 3 years ago


    Naka had a good game up to move 30, where many thought he opened the game up prematurely - but even that doesn't explain how THE MAGNUS can keep making the top 3 moves with super-human consistency from move 30 onwards ...move, after move, after move, after move... Naka keeps up for a while then makes a small mistake, but Magnus still continues to make the correct moves...

    Kasparov said Caruana might have what it takes to beat Carlsen at least once in a while (which will be great for chess) but even he hasn't proven that in a serious classical game.

  • 3 years ago


    at his age anand does not have what it takes(hunger energy and understanding) to beat or decode immaculate carlsen's game 

  • 3 years ago


    Magnus Carlsen is a machine...

  • 3 years ago


    The game played by Carlsen is the most difficult way to play with anyone. 

  • 3 years ago


    If Anand has to beat carlsen in the WCC 2014,,,He must play against Houdini with three CPU's connected,,all day and night long..! Carlsen's Accuracy is indeed Mind Boggling..!

  • 3 years ago


    Time to bring back deep blue for magnus to crush. Only thing on Earth that might give him a challenge.

  • 3 years ago


    I can see Naka been sent to group B in the future!

  • 3 years ago


    breaking news ---hikaru nakamura said he wont play against magnus again...his logic behind this disicion is that he always play for win ...but against magnus , he can not even win  a pawn !

  • 3 years ago


    One of Azerbijani GMs (Abasov,Nijat) playing in B group is at as well ==>

  • 3 years ago


    I love this tournment...I just can't belive Nakas play...he's obviously one of the best in the world, what does it take to change his stubborn mind set??? He should take some lessons by the real champ: carlsen...

    Don't get me wrong, I want Naka to win, but he's play is...well, u know...

  • 3 years ago


    Naka is not in his best form again. But if one lives on pasta and chocolates, what do you expect? With such regime he should be glad if he does not yet need medical treatment for diabetes or some other health disorder. This is what Botvinnik, the greatest theorist, would never approve of, surely.

  • 3 years ago


    I am most interested in the Carlsen vs Caruana game, the Italian player is very talented; dont expect a draw from this one folks.

Back to Top

Post your reply: