Magnus Carlsen Visits Reykjavik Where Mamedyarov, l'Ami and Fier Lead

Magnus Carlsen Visits Reykjavik Where Mamedyarov, l'Ami and Fier Lead

| 33 | Chess Event Coverage

World Champion GM Magnus Carlsen visisted the Reykjavik Open today and joined the live show for almost 45 minutes.

After six rounds GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, GM Erwin l'Ami and GM Alexander Fier are tied for first place.

For the first time since 2006 Magnus Carlsen is back in Iceland. He played in Reykjavik in 2004 and 2006, but this time he is just a “chess tourist”, visiting the tournament and his parents who are here as well.

During the sixth round Carlsen joined the live show where he answered questions from host Fiona Steil-Antoni as well as members in the chat. Below you can watch it again, or read the highlights:

The night before Carlsen participated in the traditional pub quiz, where he played with his friend and second Jon Ludvig Hammer. The two vikings snatched away victory from 2013 winners GM Ian Rogers and yours truly, scoring an impressive 26 out of 30 (against 25/30 for us).

On this pub quiz, Carlsen said to Steil-Antoni: “It was interesting. I spent a lot of time not only playing chess but also studying all kinds of classic but also obscure games, so that was fun to be able to use some of that knowledge.”

Carlsen with Hammer at the pub quiz. | Photo Fiona Steil-Antoni.

Like last year, Carlsen's father Henrik plays in the tournament. Magnus: “I talked to him today about the games. He was very excited to do well. (...) He was telling me about the games, going through them. He was also driving me crazy because he couldn't remember it!

“He loves chess. He likes to come here and also my mother likes Iceland very much.”

Carlsen checking out his father's position in the playing hall. | Photo Fiona Steil-Antoni.

About his mother he said: “She plays. I think she has beaten Magnus 6- or 7-year-old! She's never been much into chess but that's good.”

One of the members asked who he sees as his most dangerous opponents in the coming years. Carlsen: “Its hard to say. In general it's a good thing not to overreact to results. For instance Caruana should not overreact to his latest results which have not been very good and also not to his great results that he had last autumn.”

Steil-Antoni asked what he thought about Vladimir Kramnik and Anish Giri playing in the Qatar Open recently. First Carlsen joked with “Well, Kramnik can't win any of the best tournaments anymore!” but then continued: “As longs you play on the top boards I think the opposition is quite interesting. These 2600 players, especially the young ones, are very ambitious. It's interesting to play them.”

On participating in an open himself: “I don't know. For me, it had to be something special.”

During the round Carlsen gave GM David Navara excellent winning chances in his game with GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, the only player on 5.0/5. However, Navara at some point played too creatively where simply pushing the pawn would have been very strong.

Carlsen: “I don't get it. If you can push the pawn, then push the pawn. Ne3... I mean, that's clever but it's... much too clever. (...) It's really bizarre.”

The day before Mamedyrov had grabbed the sole lead with a quick and easy win over one of Iceland's young grandmasters, while Eljanov-Stopa and Fier-Gao on boards 2 and 3 ended in draws.

On Saturday Mamedyarov was caught by two players: GM Alexander Fier and GM Erwin l'Ami. Fier faced Indian GM Abhijeet Gupta, who went for a sharp attack. White's coffeehouse play was probably not fully correct and despite 20...Bc8 (frowned upon by many, including Carlsen!) Fier refuted it rather easily.

Gupta's coffeehouse chess backfired. | Photo Fiona Steil-Antoni.

l'Ami has a much more quite style, and it's a joy to see how he slowly but surely outplayed the Polish IM in his round 6 game:

l'Ami vs Stopa. | Photo Fiona Steil-Antoni.

One local hero is having a great tournament so far. After six rounds IM Jon Viktor Gunnarsson (2443) has a performance rating of 2752, and so he is well on his way to score a GM norm. After two easy wins he drew with Navara, beat GM Gawain Jones and GM Nils Grandelius and then drew with GM Hrant Melkumyan!

2015 Reykjavik Open | Round 6 Standings (Top 20)

Rk. Title Name Fed RtgI Pts. TB1 TB2 TB3 Rp
1 GM Fier Alexandr BRA 2601 5,5 25,5 17,5 23 2812
2 GM Mamedyarov Shakhriyar AZE 2756 5,5 24,5 16,5 22 2900
3 GM L'ami Erwin NED 2605 5,5 24 16,5 21,75 2817
4 GM Navara David CZE 2736 5 26,5 17,5 21,25 2761
5 IM Gunnarsson Jon Viktor ISL 2443 5 25 17 20,25 2752
6 GM Naroditsky Daniel USA 2633 5 24,5 17 20 2649
7 GM Eljanov Pavel UKR 2727 5 24 16 19,25 2721
8 GM Gao Rui CHN 2533 5 23,5 15 18,25 2679
9 GM Stefansson Hannes ISL 2560 5 22 15,5 19 2698
10 GM Maze Sebastien FRA 2564 5 22 14,5 18 2760
11 GM Granda Zuniga Julio E PER 2646 5 21,5 14,5 17,75 2728
12 GM Hansen Eric CAN 2566 5 21 14 17,5 2633
13 GM Gretarsson Hjorvar Steinn ISL 2554 4,5 25,5 17 17,75 2585
14 IM Stopa Jacek POL 2544 4,5 24 16,5 16 2611
15 GM Gupta Abhijeet IND 2625 4,5 24 15,5 16,75 2642
16 GM Libiszewski Fabien FRA 2514 4,5 23,5 16 17,25 2557
17 GM Cornette Matthieu FRA 2585 4,5 22,5 15 17,25 2583
18 GM Movsesian Sergei ARM 2665 4,5 22,5 15 16,25 2530
19 GM Jones Gawain C B ENG 2642 4,5 22,5 14,5 16 2548
20 IM Georgiadis Nico SUI 2468 4,5 22,5 14,5 15,25 2527

(Full standings here)

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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