Veselin Topalov wins Pearl Spring

PeterDoggers
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Topalov wins Pearl SpringVeselin Topalov has won the 1st Pearl Spring Super GM Tournament in Nanjing, China. While his closest rivals Bu Xiangzhi and Aronian had drawn quickly today, the Bulgarian scored yet another win, with Black against Peter Svidler. Movsesian-Ivanchuk also ended in a draw.

The 1st Pearl Spring Tournament takes place December 11- 21 in Nanjing, China. It's a six-player, double round-robin with Veselin Topalov ( 2791), Vassily Ivanchuk (2786), Levon Aronian (2757), Sergei Movsesian (2732), Peter Svidler (2727) and Bu Xiangzhi (2714). Live games daily at 15:00 local time which is early morning for Western countries (08:00 CET, 02:00 EST).

Round 9

Chosing the Caro-Kann with Black, an opening Svidler likes play to himself, Topalov beat the grandmaster from St. Petersburg today to claim the title at the 1st Pearl Spring tournament. With one round to go, the Bulgarian created a one and a half point gap with the rest of the field.

Svidler vs Topalov

Right out of the opening Topalov grabbed the initiative on the queenside and put heavy pressure on White's backward c-pawn. Svidler soon decided to sacrifice it and got some threats against Black's queen, but as soon as the queens were exchanged and Topalov made use of a tactical nuance, his extra pawn became a very healthy pawn.

Topalov drinking

Bu and Aronian were already a point behind after yesterday's round, and deciding they'd lost their chances to win the tournament (or at least finish shared first), the two shook hands just seven moves after they had left theory.

Bu-Aronian

Ivanchuk had yet another disappointing experience: after he had given up his queen for a rook, bishop and knight, he only had to untangle his pieces to get some serious winning chances, but the Ukrainian missed his chance and Movsesian was in time to force a draw by perpetual check.

Movsesian-Ivanchuk

After Bu Xiangzhi impressed for seven rounds, it was Veselin Topalov who started to make the headlines. As usual it took him a few rounds to get the engine running, but at least he didn't lose in the early phase. In the second half in Nanjing, the Bulgarian started showing the world once more how strong and attractive his chess is. His undefeated 6.5/9 is just great.

At the press conference Topalov said about his habitual slow start: "It is not my habit. In fact, I want to win every game. At the beginning the tournament, everybody is well prepared and in good physical condition. It is not easy to win. In the latter half, players get tired and make more mistakes. So it is easier to win. In the first four games, I played blacks and it was not easy to win. And in the recent three games, I played whites. It is easier to win."

Topalov at the press conference

Games of the 9th round:



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