Carlsen also beats Radjabov, 2-point lead at half time

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage
Nanjing r5The story doesn't change, but gets all the more amazing by the day: Magnus Carlsen beat Teimour Radjabov in just 25 moves in round 5 of the Pearl Spring tournament and now leads by a 2-point margin at half time as Topalov-Wang Yue and Leko-Jakovenko ended in a draw.

The 2nd Pearl Spring tournament takes place September 27 - October 9 in Nanjing, China. It's a 6-player, double round-robin with Topalov (2813), Carlsen (2772), Leko (2762), Radjabov (2757), Jakovenko (2742) and Wang Yue (2736) playing for a € 250,000 prize fund. The rate of play is 40 moves in 90 minutes plus 1 hour.

Round 5

A lead by two points at half time is perhaps the most exceptional aspect of Magnus Carlsen's success so far in Nanjing. He has been responsible for all decisive games; 11 out of 15 games ended in a draw and only 4 were won, by just one player. Carlsen's performance has raised to 3143 and the Norwegian has now also surpassed Vishy Anand on the live rating list. There's only a 12.4 rating points difference left between Carlsen and Topalov...

Nanjing r5

Carlsen is playing very well, but it must be said that his opponents haven't shown their best form against him, as if they're intimidated. Topalov went down pretty much without a chance, and today Radjabov lost very quickly. Azerbaijan's number one might have been a bit relieved to see that instead of throwing something new and different on the board, Carlsen simply followed their game from Linares in February this year. Radjabov was well prepared and his deviation 8...d5 indeed looks better. However, already at move 16 it seems that he went for the wrong plan. 16...Ng6 looks OK for Black; in the game Carlsen tactically refuted Black's active set-up with the hammer blow 23.Nxb5!.

Jakovenko easily held Leko to a draw in a Berlin Wall and Wang Yue didn't have too much problems against Topalov either. The Bulgarian gained full control over the g-file but couldn't reall improve his position, and the piece of dead wood on b2 didn't help very much either.

Nanjing r5

Tomorrow is the first rest day in Nanjing. Five players will need it, to figure out what's exactly happening there in China, and how to stop that damn Norwegian. Perhaps they can find some relief in the fact that Magnus is actually beatable... in table tennis, that is. The players are enjoying China's national sport every night, and in this field Peter Leko is the absolute king.

Games round 5

Game viewer by ChessTempo

2nd Pearl Spring (Nanjing) 2009 | Round 5 Standings 2nd Pearl Spring (Nanjing) 2009

2nd Pearl Spring (Nanjing) 2009 | Schedule & results 2nd Pearl Spring (Nanjing) 2009

Nanjing r5

There's no stoppin' for Magnus Carlsen, or is there?

Nanjing r5

But watch out for Veselin Topalov, whom we expect to do much better in the second half

Nanjing r5

Meanwhile, five draws is enough for Wang Yue to hold a clear second spot in the standings

Nanjing r5

Teimour Radjabov, missing a deadly blow today

Nanjing r5

Dmitry Jakovenko playing the Berlin Wall


Peter Doggers

Peter Doggers joined a chess club a month before turning 15 and still plays for it. He used to be an active tournament player and holds two IM norms.

Peter has a Master of Arts degree in Dutch Language & Literature. He briefly worked at New in Chess, then as a Dutch teacher and then in a project for improving safety and security in Amsterdam schools.

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