Grischuk narrows Topalov's lead

0 | Chess Event Coverage
Vugar Gashimov once again tried his luck in a Benoni, but this time around Grischuk made him pay, as the Linares defending champion moves to within a point of the leader Topalov. Today is the second and last restday in Linares.

The 27th Torneo Internacional de Ajedrez “Ciudad de Linares” takes place February 12-25 in Linares, Andalucia, Spain.

A six players, double round-robin, with Veselin Topalov (2805), Levon Aronian (2781), Boris Gelfand (2761), Vugar Gashimov (2759), Alexander Grischuk (2736) and Francisco Vallejo Pons (2705).

Rounds start at 16:00 CET, with rest days on the 17th and the 22nd. The rate of play is 2 hours for 40 moves, then 1 hour for 20, then 20 minutes for the rest of the game, with 30 seconds increment starting from move 61. The Sofia rules for offering a draw apply in Linares for the first time.

Round 8

Things have not yet been decided in Linares. In round 8, Alexander Grischuk narrowed Veselin Topalov's lead to a point by beating Vugar Gashimov, and after today's restday it's... Grischuk-Topalov on Tuesday. Yours truly is typing this from Madrid Barajas Airport, and so you can guess what that means. I'll be arriving in Linares tonight and I'll be covering the last two rounds (and the closing ceremony) on site. It wasn't clear if I would make it, since I flew to Madrid from Frankfurt (after a short trip to the US) and part of the Lufthansa crew is on strike. Luckily not my cabin crew and pilots.

So Gashimov's Benoni got a beating in round 8, and a tough one. Grischuk played a very powerful game, accurately preparing and calculating his 21st move which yielded a clear advantage, and then finishing it off strongly as well. He seems to have found his shape of e.g. last year, and this hopefully leads to an exciting encounter against Topalov. This year's Linares tournament can use every excitement available.

Topalov himself played an interesting draw against Aronian, and missed a clear win (34.Rxe4! Qxe4 35.Qc3+ Kg8 36.Qc7+-). Vallejo and Gelfand also split the point after a less eventful game. On today's rest day Topalov is playing a simul somewhere; I'll try to find out some more when I get to Linares. Although perhaps some of you might provide a link.

Soon more, on-the-spot stuff!

Games round 8

Game viewer by ChessTempo

Linares 2010 | Pairings and results

Linares 2010 | Round 8 Standings


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