MTel Update - Rounds 6-8

| 8 | Chess Event Coverage

Only 2 decisive games at Mtel in rounds 6,7 and 8 combined, but lots of tough games between these great players.

The so-called "Sofia" rules are in operation, meaning that draw offers can only be made, via the arbiter, when there is a threefold repetition, perpetual check or a theoretically drawn position. 

Of course, under these rules, we tend to see more than the usual number of threefold repetitions! Wink

In round 6 Shirov (pictured) defeated Ivanchuk when the latter misplayed a tricky endgame.  This is now one of the worst tournaments that the popular Ukrainian has played for a very long time.  His rating is taking a real hammering on the live list, where he has slipped down to a lowly 30th place.

Any average GM would take a break from such a manic chess schedule (he averages around 100 rated games a year in recent times) to protect their energy and sanity, but Chucky is not an average GM!

Round 7 saw Carlsen win against Dominguez.  The Gruenfeld has plenty of devotees among the top players (notably Kamsky and Svidler) and it certainly creates dynamic positions, but such a provocative defense invites a strong response, and Carlsen was merciless in his impressive victory.

All round 8 games were drawn, so the leaderboard now looks like this:

 Carlsen, Magnus    5
 Shirov, Alexei   5
 Topalov, Veselin   4½ 
 Wang Yue   4
 Dominguez Perez, Leinier   3½ 
 Ivanchuk, Vassily   2

Shirov and Carlsen are due to meet in the final round (round 10), in what could be a crucial clash.

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