2021 FIDE World Cup: Semis (Open), Finals (Women)

2021 World Chess Cup
July 12th-August 6th, 2021
(Sochi, Russia)
MATCH PAIRINGS (ROUND 6)
1 Carlsen, Magnus
NOR
½-½
Duda, Jan-Krzysztof
POL
2 Fedoseev, Vladimir
RUS
½-½
Karjakin, Sergey
RUS
Official Brackets

Semifinals (Open), Finals (Women), Game 1

Sunday, 1 August 2021

Semifinal games drawn… Kosteniuk breaks through in opener

Magnus Carlsen is looking to get to the 2021 FIDE World Cup final despite having no need to claim a Candidates spot. Jan-Krzysztof Duda is seeking a breakthrough result and has played inspired chess thus far. The first game was a bit tense, but neither side ever got enough pull on the position before the ensuing rook ending was drawn.

The other semifinal game was a Russian derby with Vladimir Fedoseev playing white against Sergey Karjakin. This game was almost perfectly played with the evaluation showing equality throughout the 69 moves. It doesn’t mean the game was dull as there were many twists and turns in the rook ending. In fact, Fedoseev thought that these endings can sometimes be won.


Video by FIDE Chess

Games (Open)

2021 World Chess Cup
July 12th-August 6th, 2021
(Sochi, Russia)
MATCH PAIRINGS (ROUND 6)
1 Goryachkina, Aleksandra
RUS
0-1
Kosteniuk, Alexandra
RUS
Official Brackets

An intergenerational battle occurred today when top-seed Aleksandra Goryachkina faced former world champion Alexandra Kosteniuk in the finals of the Women’s World Cup. The game ended in a textbook fashion but began in the ever-popular Catalan with Goryachkin’s white pieces getting an early advantage in space. Kosteniuk sacrificed a pawn in the middlegame for the two bishops and a passed c-pawn.


Final Position after 63…Ra6. White will lose the bishop.

A skirmish ensued when Goryachkina sacrificed a pawn for a kingside attack. Kosteniuk remained unflappable as she allowed a discovered attack on her king realizing that her king was adequately sheltered after 40…Kg6. When the smoke cleared, it was white whose king was dangerously exposed. However, black was unable to find the most accurate moves and the game went into a tricky ending.

With the game heading for a draw, Goryachkina found herself on the bad side of a rook versus bishop ending. The ending is drawn in many positions, but the white king was already in a bad position. Battling nerves and fatigue, Kosteniuk was able to find the winning formation. She gave her impressions of the game.


Video by FIDE Chess

In the third-place battle, Tan Zhongyi and Anna Muzychuk played a complicated game, but ended with a perpetual check. Interestingly enough, the game mirrored the Fedoseev-Karjakin game for the first 12 moves when Tan Zhongyi opted for 13.Bxf6 instead of Fedoseev’s 13.Nb5. Tan’s attempt seemed to release to the tension too early.


Video by FIDE Chess

Critical Links: official site, YouTube, Twitter #FIDEWorldCup2021, Results

2 Comments

  1. 2021 World Chess Cup
    July 12th-August 6th, 2021
    (Sochi, Russia)
    MATCH PAIRINGS (SEMIFINALS)
    1 Carlsen, Magnus
    NOR
    1-1
    Duda, Jan-Krzysztof
    POL
    2 Fedoseev, Vladimir
    RUS
    ½-1½
    Karjakin, Sergey
    RUS
    Official Brackets

    Semifinals (Open), Finals (Women), Game 2

    Monday, 2 August 2021

    Kosteniuk wins World Cup! Karjakin advances to finals.

    This was a great day for host Russia as Alexandra Kosteniuk won the World Cup after defeating compatriot Aleksandra Goryachkina in an inspiring way. Kosteniuk won the world championship in 2008 and will advance to the Candidates tournament for the right to play Ju Wenjun, the current world champion. Sergey Karjakin stated in the post-match interview that he wanted the right to play Magnus Carlsen, either in the World Cup final or in a World Championship rematch. To two faced each other in 2017 with Carlsen winning in tiebreaks.

    They went into the Zaitsev variation and Karjakin mentioned that he played a game in a similar line during a blitz game when he was 11. The opponent… Gata Kamsky. He mentioned that he won the game quickly. This wasn’t a quick when, but impressive. Karjakin’s 24.e6! was bone in the throat of Fedoseev as the e5-square would allow both the knight (f3) and bishop (f4) access to the dark squares. Karjakin plonked the knight on e5 and then g6. Feeling the position slip away, Fedoseev tried the speculative 27…Nxf2!? The reason was to upset the flow of white’s attack. It didn’t work and soon white had steamrolling pawns going up the board. Black had seen enough.

    Video by FIDE Chess

    Games (Open)

    2021 World Chess Cup
    July 12th-August 6th, 2021
    (Sochi, Russia)
    MATCH PAIRINGS (ROUND 6)
    1 Goryachkina, Aleksandra
    RUS
    ½-1½
    Kosteniuk, Alexandra
    RUS
    Official Brackets

    Kosteniuk wins the World Cup! Now 37 years old, Alexandra Kosteniuk is taking another shot at the world crown. It’s been twelve years since she became the world champion and many thought players such as Aleksandra Goryachkina, Valentina Guinina and Olga Girya where the new challengers. Kateryna Lagno immigrated from Ukraine to Russia to add more competition. Nevertheless, she outlasted them all and qualified for the Candidates tournament. She lost a championship match to Zhu Chen 20 years ago and now is a possible challenger to Ju Wenjun.

    In the second game of the match, Goryachkina trotted out the French Defense which is a sign that she wanted an unbalanced game. After 11…gxf6, the strategy seemed to be a poor winning attempt as Goryachkina offered trading several pieces and even a queen trade. In her desperation, the younger Aleksandra ended up with a losing position, but Alexandra gracefully offered a draw.

    Video by FIDE Chess

    In the third-place battle, Tan Zhongyi and Anna Muzychuk played a Petroff, with white playing 10.Nh4!? Commentators were saying that this was a novelty. There was a lot of probing with the white minor pieces, but it seemed like a waste of time and black ended up with the upper hand. Tan missed her chance with 39…cxb4! creating an entry route for the black king to invade the queenside. After 39…c4 the position was closed and white had fewer weaknesses to deal with. The game petered to a draw.


    Video by FIDE Chess

    Critical Links: official site, YouTube, Twitter #FIDEWorldCup2021, Results

  2. 2021 World Chess Cup
    July 12th-August 6th, 2021
    (Sochi, Russia)
    MATCH PAIRINGS (SEMIFINALS)
    1 Carlsen, Magnus
    NOR
    1½-2½
    Duda, Jan-Krzysztof
    POL
    2 Fedoseev, Vladimir
    RUS
    ½-1½
    Karjakin, Sergey
    RUS
    Official Brackets

    Semifinals (Open), 3rd Place (Women)

    Tuesday, 3 August 2021

    Carlsen ousted! Duda faces Karjakin in Final!

    Magnus Carlsen came into this tournament looking for his first World Cup victory. he will have to wait a little longer. It is clear from this World Cup that the new generation has made a statement. The World Champion had this to say…

    Maybe everyone was expecting Carlsen to waltz through the field. Even during the commentary, bias crept in when there was talk about him holding a completely lost position. There just had to be a way, right? Unfortunately, Carlsen faltered badly in this game. The situation was worsened by time pressure. Both players can be seen with less than half a minute on the clock.


    After Carlsen’s 62.Bc1?? Duda was able to attack both sides of the board. It was too much for the champion to handle.

    This position is instructive. White has just played 62.Bc1?? when 62.Bd4 was still equal. After Carlsen’s blunder, Duda used zugzwang maneuvers as the white bishop was tied to the defense of his own pawns. Finally, Duda had to deploy his king into the battle. Carlsen could no longer defend both the kingside pawns, nor stop the black king from invading. While commentators were unsure, the position was already -6. Duda was on his way, and Carlsen would crash out.

    This has to be the biggest win of Duda’s career, breaking Carlsen’s 125-game winning streak. A qualification to the Candidate’s tournament and a chance to play on the biggest stage. This win will also carry psychological weight, knowing that he can defeat the world champion in a match.

    Magnus Carlsen after falling to Duda. Photo by Eric Rosen.
    Marcus Carlsen saw his tournament come to an end.
    Photos by David Llada

    It certainly is a game-changer with the rise of a new generation of players seen during this tournament. In the following interview, he talks about his win, but there was no talk about the impact of this win on his career and his ideas about the Candidates tournament. Certainly, it is an exciting time for the Polish player, and he will go on to face an experienced match player in Karjakin.


    Video by FIDE Chess

    Games (Open)

    For the third-place bronze medal, Tan Zhongyi took advantage of erratic play by Anna Muzychuk, who seemed to be completely out of sorts in the tiebreaks. Her play was exceedingly reckless in the first game. She tried a very crude attack on the black king, sacrificing several pawns but getting zero compensation. The black king was well-protected behind three passed pawns and Muzychuk had to resign.

    In the second game, Muzychuk played the Albin Countergambit with 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e5!? 3.dxe5 Ne7?! but almost immediately made a mistake. Her 6…b5 was a serious positional mistake, and Tan later exploited it with the snappy 12.Qxa7! With black completely winning and only needing a draw to clinch the match, the Chinese player allowed a three-fold repetition.


    Videos by FIDE Chess

    Critical Links: official site, YouTube, Twitter #FIDEWorldCup2021, Results

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