Carlsen, MVL, Nakamura, So In Speed Chess Semis

Carlsen, MVL, Nakamura, So In Speed Chess Semis

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GM Magnus Carlsen (@MagnusCarlsen), Hikaru Nakamura (@Hikaru), Wesley So (@GMWSO), and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (@Lyonbeast) are the players who qualified for the Speed Chess Championship semifinals, to be played Dec. 11-13. A full news report on Nakamura-Fedoseev will be posted soon. Here's our preview of this week's three matches:

It's Speed Chess Championship week, with the remaining quarterfinals to be played on Wednesday, December 2 and Thursday, December 3. Don't miss it!

The first quarterfinal was played on November 19 and won by Wesley So (@GMWSO) 16-10 vs. Jan-Krzysztof Duda (@Polish_fighter3000). After a small break, we can enjoy the other three quarterfinals this week:

All matches can be watched on and with expert commentary.

Aronian vs. Vachier-Lagrave

The match between Aronian (@LevonAronian) and Vachier-Lagrave (@Lyonbeast) is one between two good friends. However, only one can advance and so they'll have to be enemies for a few hours.

In classical chess, MVL has a slight plus score. The Frenchman beat Aronian five to four with 29 draws. In rapid and blitz chess games the difference is bigger: MVL beat Aronian 20 to nine, with 21 draws.

Vachier-Lagrave Aronian Speed Chess

Vachier-Lagrave defeated GM Nihal Sarin (@NihalSarin) 16.5-11.5 in the Round of 16. Aronian won 14-11 against GM Ian Nepomniachtchi (@lachesisQ). The winner of MVL-Aronian will play the winner of Carlsen-Artemiev.

Carlsen vs. Artemiev

The match between Carlsen (@MagnusCarlsen) and Artemiev (@Sibelephant) comes just three days after Carlsen lost to So in the Skilling Open final. The world champion needs to be careful against one of the dark horses in this tournament!

The players have only faced each other once in classical chess. Their game at the 2020 Tata Steel Chess tournament ended in a draw. In faster time controls, Carlsen beat Artemiev two to zero, with four draws in over-the-board chess. The players drew twice in the 2020 Chessable Masters.

Carlsen Artemiev Speed Chess
Artemiev reached the quarterfinals by beating GM Anish Giri (@AnishGiri) 15.5-11.5. Carlsen was too strong for GM Parham Maghsoodloo (@Parhamov): 24-5.

Nakamura vs. Fedoseev

The match between Nakamura (@Hikaru) and Fedoseev (@Bigfish1995) is another one with a big favorite and an underdog that shouldn't be underestimated. The winner will play against Wesley So in the semifinals.

If we look at classical chess, there are two games: Fedoseev eliminated Nakamura from the 2017 FIDE World Cup scoring 1.5-0.5. Over the board, they also faced each other in one rapid and one blitz game and both ended in draws. 

In Titled Tuesdays, Nakamura scored 5-3 between May and September of this year. They also played the final of the Super Swiss on October 5, where Nakamura won 7.5-5.5.

Nakamura Fedoseev Speed Chess

Nakamura defeated GM Haik Martirosyan (@Micki-taryan) 21-5 while Fedoseev won a thriller against GM Alireza Firouzja (@Firouzja2003) 15-14.

With three matches packed in just two days, a lot of exciting, top-level chess is on the menu. As always, all matches can be watched on and with expert commentary.

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.

Between 2007 and 2013 Peter was running ChessVibes, a major source for chess news and videos acquired by in October 2013.

As our Director News & Events, Peter writes many of our news reports. In the summer of 2022, The Guardian’s Leonard Barden described him as “widely regarded as the world’s best chess journalist.”

In October, Peter's first book The Chess Revolution will be published!

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