2017 Tata Steel Chess (Wijk aan Zee)

Tata Steel Chess 2017

The first major tournament has begun and marks the first classical tournament for Magnus Carlsen since he defended his title. He will be one of the 14 competitors in the 79th edition of the Tata Steel Chess tournament in Wijk aan Zee (Netherlands). Pea soup will not be the only thing served up as the stage is set for some sizzling play in one of the longest running tournaments.

Carlsen hoists champion's trophy.

Carlsen hoists champion’s trophy.
Photo by chess24

Carlsen is joined by the newly-emergent Wesley So and his nemesis Sergey Karjakin. There are several new faces in the “Masters” group including the winner of last year’s “Challengers” group Baskaran Adihban and Wei Yi, who won the group in 2015.

GM Jeffery Xiong
Photo by Daaim Shabazz.

The Challengers tournament will be led by Mark Ragger of the Austria, but will have some interesting faces including World Junior Champion Jeffery Xiong. This field has a number of young talent including Norway’s hopeful new GM in Aryan Tari. China’s Lu Shanglei was known most for his performance in last year’s World Cup, but will be trying to make a presence here and well as his compatriot Lei Tingjie, the world’s highest-rated girl.

Tata Steel is an Indian multinational conglomerate consisting of a number of industries. Those following the tournament from the early days will remember it as the Hoorgovens, a Dutch steel company that would later merge with British steel to form the Corus Group. When Tata steel purchased Corus in 2007, the tournament took on the name of Indian conglomerate.

Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
Videos: (YouTube, Chess24)

2017 Tata Steel Tournament
January 13th-29th, 2017 (Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands)
Masters
#
Name
Title
Federation
Flag
Rating
1 Carlsen, Magnus GM Norway
2840
2 So, Wesley GM USA
2808
3 Karjakin, Sergey GM Russia
2785
4 Aronian, Levon GM Armenia
2780
5 Giri, Anish GM Netherlands
2773
6 Nepomniachtchi, Ian GM Russia
2767
7 Harikrishna, Pentala GM India
2766
8 Eljanov, Pavel GM Ukraine
2755
9 Wojtaszek, Radoslaw GM Poland
2750
10 Andreikin, Dmitri GM Russia
2736
11 Wei, Yi GM China
2675
12 Rapport, Richard GM Hungary
2702
13 Van Wely, Loek GM Netherlands
2695
14 Adhiban, Baskaran GM India
2653
Challengers
#
Name
Title
Federation
Flag
Rating
1 Ragger, Markus GM Austria
2697
2 Smirin, Ilya GM Israel
2667
3 Xiong, Jeffery GM USA
2667
4 Jones, Gwain GM England
2665
5 Grandelius, Nils GM Sweden
2642
6 Lu, Shanglei GM China
2612
7 van Foreest, Jorden GM Netherlands
2612
8 Bok, Benjamin GM Netherlands
2608
9 L’Ami, Erwin GM Netherlands
2605
10 Hansen, Eric GM Canada
2603
11 Tari, Aryan GM Norway
2584
12 Dobrov, Vladimir GM Russia
2499
13 Tingjie, Lei WGM Netherlands
2467
14 Guramishvili, Sopiko IM Georgia
2370
Official Site

Daaim Shabazz

Dr. Daaim Shabazz is the creator and webmaster of The Chess Drum. He serves as a tenured faculty member of Global Business & Marketing at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee, Florida, USA. He holds an MBA in Marketing and a doctorate in International Affairs & Development. He has served the journalist community for more than 30 years and still competes in tournaments occasionally.

18 Comments

  1. Schedule

    Both groups start on 14 January 2017. All rounds in Wijk aan Zee begin at 1:30pm, except for the last round on 29 January 2017, which begins at 12.00pm. Both rounds on the Chess On Tour days start at 2:00pm.

    Round 1
    Saturday, January 14th

    Round 2
    Sunday, January 15th

    Round 3
    Monday, January 16th

    Round 4
    Tuesday, January 17th

    REST DAY
    Wednesday, January 18th

    Round 5
    Thursday, January 19th (Rotterdam)

    Round 6
    Friday, January 20th

    Round 7
    Saturday, January 21st

    Round 8
    Sunday, January 22nd

    REST DAY
    Monday, January 23rd

    Round 9
    Tuesday, January 24th

    Round 10
    Wednesday, January, 25th (Haarlem)

    REST DAY
    Thursday, January 26th

    Round 11
    Friday, January 27th

    Round 12
    Saturday, January 28th

    Round 13
    Sunday, January 29th

  2. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 1 – Saturday, January 14

    Eljanov beats Rapport’s eccentric 4…g5!? in exciting encounter!
    Ragger beats World Junior Champion

    MASTERS

    Pentala Harikrishna ½-½ Levon Aronian
    Baskaran Adhiban ½-½ Loek Van Wely
    Pavel Eljanov 1-0 Richard Rapport
    Sergey Karjakin ½-½ Anish Giri
    Wesley So ½-½ Magnus Carlsen
    Radoslaw Wojtaszek ½-½ Ian Nepomniachtchi
    Dmitri Andreikin ½-½ Wei Yi

    CHALLENGERS

    Gwain Jones ½-½ Nils Grandelius
    Sopiko Guramishvili ½-½ Lu Shanglei
    Ilya Smirin ½-½ Vladimir Dobrov
    Aryan Tari ½-½ Eric Hansen
    Benjamin Bok 1-0 Lei Tingjie
    Markus Ragger 1-0 Jeffery Xiong
    Jorden van Foreest 1-0 Erwin L’Ami

    Video by GM Daniel King

    …and another view from GM Peter Svidler…

    Video by chess24

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  3. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 2 – Sunday, January 15

    Eljanov topples van Wely for 2/2… Carlsen wins with 6.a3!? against Najdorf
    Ragger on 2/2 in Challengers after grinding out win

    MASTERS

    Levon Aronian ½-½ Wei Yi
    Ian Nepomniachtchi ½-½ Dmitri Andreikin
    Magnus Carlsen 1-0 Radoslaw Wojtaszek
    Anish Giri ½-½ Wesley So
    Richard Rapport ½-½ Sergey Karjakin
    Loek Van Wely 0-1 Pavel Eljanov
    Pentala Harikrishna 1-0 Baskaran Adhiban

    Interview with Magnus Carlsen after win over Wojtaszek

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #2 (Masters)

    1st: Eljanov, 2; 2nd-3rd: Carlsen, Harikrishna, 1½; 4th-10th: So, Aronian, Giri, Andreikin, Wei, Karjakin, Nepomniachtchi, 1; 11th-14th: Wojtaszek, Rapport, van Wely, Adhiban, ½

    CHALLENGERS

    Nils Grandelius ½-½ Erwin l’Ami
    Jeffery Xiong 1-0 Jorden van Foreest
    Lei Tingjie 0-1 Markus Ragger
    Eric Hansen ½-½ Benjamin Bok
    Vladimir Dobrov ½-½ Aryan Tari
    Lu Shanglei ½-½ Ilya Smirin
    Gawain Jones 1-0 Sopiko Guramishvili

    Standings after Round #2 (Challengers)

    1st: Ragger, 2; 2nd-4th: Smirin, Jones, Bok, 1½; 5th-10th: Hansen, Dobrov, Xiong, Grandelius, Tari, van Foreest, 1; 11th-13th: L’Ami, Lu, Guramishvili, ½; 14th: Lei, 0

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  4. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 3 – Monday, January 16

    Karjakin, So and Wei score, but Ejanov maintains lead
    “Fire on Board” with 6/7 decisive results in Challengers

    Richard Rapport caught Wesley So off guard and seized the advantage, but then threw it all away in one move. Photo by Alina L’Ami

    Richard Rapport (right) caught Wesley So off guard and seized the advantage, but then threw it all away in one move. Photo by Alina L’Ami

    MASTERS

    Baskaran Adhiban ½-½ Levon Aronian
    Pavel Eljanov ½-½ Pentala Harikrishna
    Sergey Karjakin 1-0 Loek Van Wely
    Wesley So 1-0 Richard Rapport
    Radoslaw Wojtaszek ½-½ Anish Giri
    Dmitri Andreikin ½-½ Magnus Carlsen
    Wei Yi 1-0 Ian Nepomniachtchi

    Interview with Wesley So after win over Rapport in wild encounter

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #3 (Masters)

    1st: Eljanov, 2½; 2nd-6th: Harikrishna, Carlsen, Wei, So, Karjakin, 2; 7th-9th: Aronian, Giri, Andreikin, 1½; 10th-12th: Nepomniachtchi, Wojtaszek, Adhiban, 1; 13th-14th: Rapport, van Wely, ½.

    CHALLENGERS

    Sopiko Guramishvili 0-1 Nils Grandelius
    Ilya Smirin 1-0 Gawain Jones
    Aryan Tari 0-1 Shanglei Lu
    Benjamin Bok 0-1 Vladimir Dobrov
    Markus Ragger 1-0 Eric Hansen
    Jorden van Foreest 0-1 Lei Tingjie
    Erwin L’Ami ½-½ Jeffery Xiong

    Standings after Round #3 (Challengers)

    1st: Ragger, 3; 2nd: Smirin, 2½; 3rd-4th: Dobrov, Grandelius, 2; 11th-13th: Xiong, Jones, Bok, Lu, 1½; L’Ami, Tari, Hansen, van Foreest, Lei, 1; 14th: Guramishvili, ½

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  5. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 4 – Tuesday, January 17

    Carlsen wins, but Eljanov keeps slim lead after winning
    More bloodletting in Challengers… 7/7 decisive games!

    Prodigy Wei Yi battles a former prodigy. Photo by Alina L’Ami

    Prodigy Wei Yi battles a former prodigy.
    Photo by Alina L’Ami

    MASTERS

    Levon Aronian ½-½ Ian Nepomniachtchi
    Magnus Carlsen 1-0 Wei, Yi
    Anish Giri ½-½ Dmitri Andreikin
    Richard Rapport ½-½ Radoslaw Wojtaszek
    Loek Van Wely 0-1 Wesley So
    Pentala Harikrishna ½-½ Sergey Karjakin
    Baskaran Adhiban 0-1 Pavel Eljanov

    Interview with Magnus Carlsen after win over Wei Yi

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #4 (Masters)

    1st: Eljanov, 3½; 2nd-3rd: Carlsen, So, 3; 4th-5th: Harikrishna, Karjakin, 2½; 6th-9th: Giri, Andreikin, Aronian, Wei, 2; 10th-11th: Nepomniachtchi, Wojtaszek, 1½; 12th-13th: Rapport, Adhiban, 14th: van Wely, ½

    CHALLENGERS

    Nils Grandelius 0-1 Jeffery Xiong
    Lei Tingjie 0-1 L’Ami
    Eric Hansen 1-0 Jorden van Foreest
    Vladimir Dobrov 0-1 Markus Ragger
    Lu Shanglei 1-0 Benjamin Bok
    Gawain Jones 1-0 Aryan Tari
    Sopiko Guramishvili 0-1 Ilya Smirin

    Standings after Round #4 (Challengers)

    1st: Ragger, 4; 2nd: Smirin, 3½; 3rd-5th: Xiong, Lu, Jones, 2½; 6th-9th: Dobrov, L’Ami, Grandelius, Hansen, 2; 10th: Bok, 1½; 11th-13th: van Foreest, Tari, Lei, 1; 14th: Guramishvili, ½

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  6. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 5 – Thursday, January 19

    Wesley So snatches lead; Adhiban breaches Karjakin’s defense

    MASTERS

    Eljanov, P. 0-1 Aronian, L.
    Karjakin, S. 0-1 Adhiban, B.
    So, W. 1-0 Harikrishna, P.
    Wojtaszek, R. 1-0 Van Wely, L.
    Andreikin, D. ½-½ Rapport, R.
    Wei, Y. ½-½ Giri, A.
    Nepomniachtchi, I. ½-½ Carlsen, M.

    Interview with Baskaran Adhiban after beating Karjakin

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #5 (Masters)

    1st: So, 4; 2nd-3rd: Carlsen, Eljanov, 3½; 4th: Aronian, 3; 5th-10th: Giri, Harikrishna, Andreikin, Wei, Karjakin, Wojtaszek, 2½; 11th-12th: Nepomniachtchi, Adhiban, 2; 13th: Richard Rapport, 1½, 14th: van Wely, ½

    CHALLENGERS

    Smirin, I ½-½ Grandelius, N.
    Tari, A. 1-0 Guramishvili, S.
    Bok, B. 0-1 Jones, G.
    Ragger, M. ½-½ Lu, S.
    van Foreest, J. 1-0 Dobrov, V.
    l’Ami, E. ½-½ Hansen, E.
    Xiong, J. 1-0 Tingjie, L.

    Standings after Round #5 (Challengers)

    1st: Ragger, 4½; 2nd: Smirin, 4; 3rd-4th: Xiong, Jones, 3½; 5th: Lu, 3; 6th-8th: Grandelius, L’Ami, Hansen, 2½; 9th-11th: van Foreest, Dobrov, Tari, 2; 12th: Bok, 1½; 13th: Lei, 1; 14th: Guramishvili, ½

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  7. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 6 – Friday, January 20

    Wesley So stifles King’s Gambit to keep lead… Giri wins a game!

    MASTERS

    Levon Aronian ½-½ Magnus Carlsen
    Anish Giri 1-0 Ian Nepomniachtchi
    Richard Rapport 0-1 Wei Yi
    Loek Van Wely ½-½ Dmitri Andreikin
    Pentala Harikrishna ½-½ Radoslaw Wojtaszek
    Baskaran Adhiban ½-½ Wesley So
    Pavel Eljanov ½-½ Sergey Karjakin

    Interview with Anish Giri who breaks a long string a draws with a win

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #6 (Masters)

    1st: So, 4½; 2nd-3rd: Carlsen, Eljanov, 4; 4th-6th: Aronian, Giri, Wei, 3½; 7th-10th: Harikrishna, Andreikin, Karjakin, Wojtaszek, 3; 11th: Adhiban, 2½; 12th: Nepomniachtchi, 2; 13th: Rapport, 1½, 14th: van Wely, 1

    CHALLENGERS

    Nils Grandelius 1-0 Lei Tingjie
    Eric Hansen 1-0 Jeffery Xiong
    Vladimir Dobrov ½-½ Erwin l’Ami
    Lu Shanglei 1-0 Jorden van Foreest
    Gawain Jones 1-0 Markus Ragger
    Sopiko Guramishvili 0-1 Benjamin Bok
    Ilya Smirin 0-1 Aryan Tari

    Standings after Round #6 (Challengers)

    1st-2nd: Ragger, Jones, 4½; 3rd-4th: Smirin, Lu, 4; 5th-7th: Hansen, Xiong, Grandelius, 3½; 8th-9th: L’Ami, Tari, 3; 10th-11th: Dobrov, Bok, 2½; 12th: van Foreest, 2; 13th: Lei, 1; 14th: Guramishvili, ½

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  8. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 7 – Saturday, January 21

    Missed opportunities by Carlsen and Eljanov. Adhiban wins again!
    Jones keeps pace with Ragger… both winning

    MASTERS

    Sergey Karjakin 1-0 Levon Aronian
    Wesley So ½-½ Pavel Eljanov
    Radoslaw Wojtaszek 0-1 Baskaran Adhiban
    Dmitri Andreikin ½-½ Pentala Harikrishna
    Wei Yi 1-0 Loek Van Wely
    Ian Nepomniachtchi ½-½ Richard Rapport
    Magnus Carlsen ½-½ Anish Giri

    Interview with Sergey Karjakin… who discussed win over Aronian
    and also why he missed winning a piece on move 10

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #7 (Masters)

    1st: So, 5; 2nd-4th: Carlsen, Eljanov, Wei, 4½; 5th-6th: Giri, Karjakin, 4; 7th-10th: Aronian, Harikrishna, Adhiban, Andreikin, 3½; 11th: Wojtaszek, 3; 12th: Nepomniachtchi, 2½; 13th: Rapport, 2, 14th: van Wely, 1

    CHALLENGERS

    Aryan Tari ½-½ Nils Grandelius
    Benjamin Bok, B. 0-1 Ilya Smirin
    Markus Ragger 1-0 Sopiko Guramishvili
    Jorden van Foreest 0-1 Gawain Jones
    Erwin L’Ami ½-½ Lu Shanglei
    Jeffery Xiong, J. 1-0 Vladimir Dobrov
    Lei Tingjie ½-½ Eric Hansen

    Standings after Round #7 (Challengers)

    1st-2nd: Ragger, Jones, 5½; 3rd: Smirin, 5; 4th-5th: Lu, Xiong, 4½; 6th-7th: Hansen, Grandelius, 4; 8th-9th: L’Ami, Tari, 3½; 10th-11th: Dobrov, Bok, 2½; 12th: van Foreest, 2; 13th: Lei, 1½; 14th: Guramishvili, ½

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  9. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 8 – Monday, January 23

    Rapport topples languishing Carlsen… Aronian, Adhiban gain

    MASTERS

    Levon Aronian 1-0 Anish Giri
    Richard Rapport 1-0 Magnus Carlsen
    Levon Van Wely ½-½ Ian Nepomniachtchi
    Pentala Harikrishna ½-½ Wei Yi
    Baskaran Adhiban 1-0 Dmitri Andreikin
    Pavel Eljanov ½-½ Radoslaw Wojtaszek
    Sergey Karjakin ½-½ Wesley So

    The World Champion has come unraveled with a loss to the hapless Dutchman.
    Photo by Alina L’Ami

    Interview with Levon Aronian on his strange 8. Na3!?

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #8 (Masters)

    1st: So, 5½; 2nd-3rd: Eljanov, Wei, 5; 4th-7th: Aronian, Carlsen, Adhiban, Karjakin, 4½; 8th-9th: Harikrishna, Giri, 4; 10th-11th: Andreikin, Wojtaszek, 3½; 12th-13th: Rapport, Nepomniachtchi, 3; 14th: van Wely, 1½

    CHALLENGERS

    Nils Grandelius ½-½ Eric Hansen
    Vladimir Dobrov 1-0 Lei Tingjie
    Lu Shanglei ½-½ Jeffery Xiong
    Gawain Jones ½-½ Erwin L’Ami
    Sopiko Guramishvili ½-½ Jorden van Foreest
    Ilya Smirin ½-½ Markus Ragger
    Aryan Tari ½-½ Benjamin Bok

    Standings after Round #8 (Challengers)

    1st-2nd: Ragger, Jones, 6; 3rd: Smirin, 5½; 4th-5th: Lu, Xiong, 5; 6th-7th: Hansen, Grandelius, 4½; 8th-9th: L’Ami, Tari, 4; 10th: Dobrov, 3½; 11th: Bok, 3; 12th: van Foreest, 2½; 13th: Lei, 1½; 14th: Guramishvili, 1

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  10. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 9 – Tuesday, January 24

    Loek van Wely continues Wijk aan Zee futility… loses again to Carlsen
    Xiong knocks Jones from joint lead… Smirin steps up

    MASTERS

    So, W. ½-½ Aronian, L.
    Wojtaszek, R. ½-½ Karjakin, S.
    Andreikin, D. ½-½ Eljanov, P.
    Wei, Y. ½-½ Adhiban, B.
    Nepomniachtchi, I. ½-½ Harikrishna, P.
    Carlsen, M. 1-0 Van Wely, L.
    Giri, A. ½-½ Rapport, R.

    Video Impressions of Round 9

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #9 (Masters)

    1st: So, 6; 2nd-4th: Carlsen, Eljanov, Wei, 5½; 5th-7th: Aronian, Adhiban, Karjakin, 5; 8th-9th: Harikrishna, Giri, 4½; 10th-11th: Andreikin, Wojtaszek, 4; 12th-13th: Rapport, Nepomniachtchi, 3½; 14th: van Wely, 1½

    CHALLENGERS

    Bok, B. ½-½ Grandelius, N.
    Ragger, M. ½-½ Tari, A.
    van Foreest, J. 0-1 Smirin, I
    l’Ami, E. 1-0 Guramishvili, S.
    Xiong, J. 1-0 Jones, G.
    Tingjie, L. ½-½ Lu, S.
    Hansen, E. 1-0 Dobrov, V.

    Interview with GM Jeffery Xiong

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #9 (Challengers)

    1st-2nd: Ragger, Smirin, 6½; 3rd-4th: Xiong, Jones, 6; 5th-6th: Hansen, Lu, 5½; 7th-8th: L’Ami, Grandelius, 5; 9th: Tari, 4½; 10th-11th: Dobrov, Bok, 3½; 12th: van Foreest, 2½; 13th: Lei, 2; 14th: Guramishvili, 1

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  11. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 10 – Wednesday, January 25

    Home-cooking unappetizing as Dutch players’ woes continue…
    So now up a full point… three-way tie in Challengers

    MASTERS

    Aronian, L. 1-0 Rapport, R.
    Van Wely, L. ½-½ Giri, A.
    Harikrishna, P. ½-½ Carlsen, M.
    Adhiban, B. ½-½ Nepomniachtchi, I.
    Eljanov, P. ½-½ Wei, Y.
    Karjakin, S. 1-0 Andreikin, D.
    So, W. 1-0 Wojtaszek, R.

    Video Impressions of Round 10

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #10 (Masters)

    1st: So, 7; 2nd-6th: Aronian, Carlsen, Eljanov, Karjakin, Wei, 6; 7th-7th: Adhiban, 5½; 8th-9th: Harikrishna, Giri, 5; 10th-12th: Andreikin, Nepomniachtchi, Wojtaszek, 4; 13th: Rapport, 3½; 14th: van Wely, 2

    Tata GMs posing in front of the Frans Hals Museum.

    Tata GMs posing in front of the Frans Hals Museum.

    CHALLENGERS

    Grandelius, N. 1-0 Dobrov, V.
    Lu, S. 0-1 Hansen, E.
    Jones, G. ½-½ Tingjie, L.
    Guramishvili, S. 0-1 Xiong, J.
    Smirin, I ½-½ l’Ami, E.
    Tari, A. ½-½ van Foreest, J.
    Bok, B. ½-½ Ragger, M.

    Standings after Round #10 (Challengers)

    1st-3rd: Ragger, Smirin, Xiong, 7; 4th-5th: Hansen, Jones, 6½; 6th: Grandelius, 6; 7th-8th: L’Ami, Lu, 5½; 9th: Tari, 5; 10th: Bok, 3½; 11th: Dobrov, 3½; 12th: van Foreest, 3; 13th: Lei, 2½; 14th: Guramishvili, 1

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  12. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 11 – Friday, January 27

    Carlsen out of sorts… Wei Yi closes gap.
    King Xiong! The World Junior Champion pulls ahead in the Challengers section!

    Carlsen's expression after 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6!?

    Carlsen’s expression after 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6!?

    MASTERS

    Wojtaszek, R. ½-½ Aronian, L.
    Andreikin, D. ½-½ So, W.
    Wei, Y. 1-0 Karjakin, S.
    Nepomniachtchi, I. ½-½ Eljanov, P.
    Carlsen, M. ½-½ Adhiban, B.
    Giri, A. ½-½ Harikrishna, P.
    Rapport, R. ½-½ Van Wely, L.

    Video by Tata Steel Chess

    Standings after Round #11 (Masters)

    1st: So, 7½; 2nd: Wei, 7; 3rd-5th: Aronian, Carlsen, Eljanov, 6½; 6th-7th: Adhiban, Karjakin, 6; 8th-9th: Harikrishna, Giri, 3½; 10th-12th: Andreikin, Nepomniachtchi, Wojtaszek, 4½; 13th: Rapport, 4; 14th: van Wely, 2½

    CHALLENGERS

    Ragger, M. ½-½ Grandelius, N.
    van Foreest, J. ½-½ Bok, B.
    l’Ami, E. ½-½ Tari, A.
    Xiong, J. 1-0 Smirin, I
    Tingjie, L. 1-0 Guramishvili, S.
    Hansen, E. 0-1 Jones, G.
    Dobrov, V. 0-1 Lu, S.

    GM Jeffery Xiong is on a torrid pace and takes sole possession of 1st.

    GM Jeffery Xiong is on a torrid pace (4½ from last 5 rounds)
    and takes sole possession of 1st.

    Standings after Round #11 (Challengers)

    1st-3rd: Xiong, 8; 2nd-3rd: Ragger, Jones, 7½; 4th: Smirin, 7; 5th-7th: Hansen, Grandelius, Lu, 6½; 8th: L’Ami, 6; 9th: Tari, 5½; 10th: Bok, 4½; 11th-13th: Dobrov, 3½; 14th: Guramishvili, 1

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  13. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 12 – Friday, January 27

    Carlsen's expression after 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6!?

    Another Carlsen expression… he got a gift today and is only 1/2-point back.
    Ragger and Jones back on top after Xiong toppled

    MASTERS

    Aronian, L. 1-0 Van Wely, L.
    Harikrishna, P. ½-½ Rapport, R.
    Adhiban, B. ½-½ Giri, A.
    Eljanov, P. 0-1 Carlsen, M.
    Karjakin, S. ½-½ Nepomniachtchi, I.
    So, W. ½-½ Wei, Y.
    Wojtaszek, R. ½-½ Andreikin, D.

    Standings after Round #12 (Masters)

    1st: So, 8; 2nd-4th: Carlsen, Aronian, Wei, 7½; 5th-7th: Adhiban, Karjakin, Eljanov, 6½; 8th-9th: Harikrishna, Giri, 6; 10th-12th: Andreikin, Nepomniachtchi, Wojtaszek, 5; 13th: Rapport, 4½; 14th: van Wely, 2½

    CHALLENGERS

    Grandelius, N. 0-1 Lu, S.
    Jones, G. 1-0 Dobrov, V.
    Guramishvili, S. ½-½ Hansen, E.
    Smirin, I. 1-0 Tingjie, L.
    Tari, A. 1-0 Xiong, J.
    Bok, B. ½-½ l’Ami, E.
    Ragger, M. 1-0 van Foreest, J.

    Standings after Round #12 (Challengers)

    1st-2nd: Ragger, Jones, 8½; 3rd-4th: Smirin, Xiong, 8; 5th: Lu, 7½; 6th: Hansen, 7; 8th: Tari, L’Ami, Grandelius, 6½; 10th: Bok, 5; 11th-13th: Dobrov, van Foreest, Lei, 3½; 14th: Guramishvili, 1½

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  14. Tata Steel Chess 2017

    Round 13 – Sunday, January 29

    Wesley So wins 2017 Tata Steel by a full point!
    Gawain Jones wins Challengers… promoted to 2018 Tata Masters

    So wins!

    Wesley So (far right) at the press conference.
    Photo by Alina L’Ami

    MASTERS

    Andreikin, D. 1-0 Aronian, L.
    Wei, Y. 0-1 Wojtaszek, R.
    Nepomniachtchi, I. 0-1 So, W.
    Carlsen, M. ½-½ Karjakin, S.
    Giri, A. ½-½ Eljanov, P.
    Rapport, R. 0-1 Adhiban, B.
    Van Wely, L. 1-0 Harikrishna, P.

    Standings after Round #13 (Masters)

    1st: So, 9; 2nd: Carlsen, 8; 3rd-5th: Adhiban, Aronian, Wei, 7½; 6th-7th: Karjakin, Eljanov, 7; 8th: Giri, 6½; 9th-11th: Harikrishna, Andreikin, Wojtaszek, 6; 12th: Nepomniachtchi, 5; 13th: Rapport, 4½; 14th: van Wely, 3½

    CHALLENGERS

    van Foreest, J.½-½ Grandelius, N.
    l’Ami, E. ½-½ Ragger, M.
    Xiong, J. ½-½ Bok, B.
    Tingjie, L. 0-1 Tari, A.
    Hansen, E. 1-0 Smirin, I
    Dobrov, V. 1-0 Guramishvili, S.
    Lu, S. ½-½ Jones, G.

    Standings after Round #13 (Challengers)

    1st-2nd: Jones, Ragger, 9; 3rd: Xiong, 8½; 4th-6th: Hansen, Lu, Smirin, 8; 7th: Tari, 7½; 8th-9th: L’Ami, Grandelius, 7; 10th: Bok, 5½; 11th: Dobrov, 4½; 12th: van Foreest, 4; 13th: Lei, 1½; 14th: Guramishvili, 1½

    Video by GM Daniel King

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess.com)

  15. Wesley So wins 2017 Tata Steel!

    Wesley So was at a low point a couple of years ago placing last in the 2015 Sinquefield Cup. Now only 16 points behind Magnus Carlsen while bolting ahead of Fabiano Caruana. Caruana is currently playing in Gibraltar where he was upset by Nigel Short in the sixth round. This allowed So to overtake him on the live rating list.

    Wesley So in action against Radoslaw Wojtaszek of Poland
    Photo by Alina L’Ami

    Both Carlsen and So seem to be going in opposite directions on the rating ladder. Carlsen came in 2nd in the 2017 Tata Steel, but struggled throughout to find his footing. So played solidly and was worse in only one encounter (against Rapport). The Filipino’s victory was his third supertournament victory in a row along with the Sinquefield and the London Classic. Carlsen was busy with the pre- and post-match World Championship affairs and didn’t participate, so this was the first tournament So has won with the reigning World Champion competing.


    “Winning this tournament is huge, with the world champion in it –
    the best player in the world.”


    He credits his success to his faith and surrogate family. During his run of 56 unbeaten games, he has become a fixture in top-level chess. Many have pointed out his humble persona and unpretentious manner. After winning two gold medals at the Baku Olympiad, he has made a nice run on the tournament circuit.

    Wesley So, winner of 2017 Tata Steel Chess Photo by Alina L’Ami (Tata Steel Chess)

    In this tournament, he scored +5 including three wins in a row against Richard Rapport, Loek van Wely and Pentala Harikrishna. As Carlsen struggled with consistency and Sergey Karjakin was off form, So held off surges from 17-year old phenom Wei Yi and Baskaran Adhiban of India. It was enough and So would take home his first Tata winner’s cup.

    There were some interesting moments in the tournament such as several opening experiments (Karjakin’s 6.a3!?) and Adhiban’s King’s Gambit! The good thing about Tata 2017 was the new faces as opposed to the usual suspects of yesteryear. It gets to be tiresome seeing the same ten players competing in every supertournament, but this one had an air of newness. Gawain Jones will join the Masters group next year after winning the Challengers’ section on tiebreaks over Markus Ragger. Both ended with 9/13.

    Official Site: https://www.tatasteelchess.com/
    Videos: (YouTube, Chess24)
    Games: (Masters, Challengers)
    Drum Coverage: https://www.thechessdrum.net/

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