Tal Memorial R6: Mamedyarov beats Eljanov, shares lead with Aronian

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Tal Memorial R6: Mamedyarov beats Eljanov, shares lead with AronianThanks to a fine endgame victory against Pavel Eljanov today Shakhriyar Mamedyarov caught Levon Aronian in the standings at the Tal Memorial. The two share first place with three rounds to go.

General info

The traditional Tal Memorial tournament takes place 4-14 November in the GUM Exhibition Hall on Red Square, Moscow. Aronian (ARM, 2801), Kramnik (RUS, 2791), Alexander Grischuk (RUS 2771), Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (AZE, 2763), Sergey Karjakin (RUS, 2760), Pavel Eljanov (UKR, 2742), Boris Gelfand (ISR, 2741), Hikaru Nakamura (USA, 2741), Alexei Shirov (ESP, 2735) and Wang Hao (CHN, 2727) play a single round-robin. More info here.

Playing hall

Round 6 report

21st century opening preparation, that seemed to be the main theme in this sixth round of the Tal Memorial, after a few hours of play. Luckily there was also some real chess to be enjoyed today, but more about that later on.

What was the case? Well, just half an hour into the round a draw was already a fact on the top board - the one on stage that's placed in the middle, and closest to the audience, with always the highest ranked player playing. Alexei Shirov and Levon Aronian basically bashed out 23 moves of Marshall theory, and shortly after started repeating moves.


We spoke to Alexei Shirov after the game, who in fact gave two good reasons, summarized as 1) he simply couldn't find anything for White in this line, and 2) against Aronian it made sense not to push and risk getting on minus four. The audio clip:


Something very similar happened in Karjakin-Grischuk. Here, in a 6.Be3 Ng4 Najdorf, the players copied Svidler-Grischuk, Mexico City (WCh) 2007 for twenty moves. Soon afterwards with an accurate sacrifice that no doubt had been in Grischuk's computer for a while, Black forced a perpetual check.


It's noteworthy to add - and Grischuk did add this at the press conference - that during the Svidler-Grischuk game Alexander Motylev was Svidler's second, and currently he works for... Karjakin! In fact Motylev can be seen almost every day in the playing hall.

Ubilava and Motylev

GMs, and seconds in Moscow, Elizbar Ubilava (currently working for Mamedyarov) and Alexander Motylev (Karjakin)

Here's a brief audio clip with Karjakin:


Both Nakamura-Wang Hao and Gelfand-Kramnik weren't very interesting games, but the one we haven't mentioned yet is absolutely worth studying carefully: Mamedyarov-Eljanov. From an almost equal, queenless middlegame the Azeri managed to outplay the Ukrainian in superb, Karpovian style - like the 12th World Champion loved to do, Mamedyarov finishes a positional game with a nice, tactical blow.


Again some players used ear plugs during the round. Not only can they sometimes hear the commentary the spectators listen to (via hearing devices they can enjoy the same commentary as which is available online, with Genna Sosonko and Mark Gluhovsky), but today there was also noise again coming from outside. Currently at the Red Square construction workers are building a big ice skating track, we're told. Moscow is already preparing for Christmas.

Games round 6

Game viewer by ChessTempo

Tal Memorial 2010 | Schedule and results
Tal Memorial 2010 | Schedule and pairings

Tal Memorial 2010 | Round 6 standings
Tal Memorial 2010 | Schedule and pairings


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