Chess: Carlsen knocked out of World Cup semi-final as Pole Duda emerges | Magnus carlsen


Magnus Carlsen has never won the biennial World Cup knockout, and the No.1 was knocked out Tuesday in the semifinals of his $ 190,000 renewal in 2021 in Sochi. 23-year-old Pole Jan-Krzysztof Duda proved to be a nemesis again on big occasions for the Norwegian world champion and won the tournament.

Last fall, Duda ended Carlsen’s record 125 games unbeaten and was congratulated by his namesake Andrzej Duda, president of Poland. This week, chess player Duda did even better by beating Sergey Karjakin, the 2016 title challenger, in the World Cup final. Their first match was a quick draw, but in the second Duda was well prepared against a fashionable Queen’s Gambit block. Karjakin never entered the game and quit just a pawn but with a bad position.

Duda’s success qualified him for the 2022 eight-man contenders, who will decide the next world title challenger after the 2021 game, in which Russia’s Ian Nepomniachtchi takes on Carlsen in 14 matches in November-December in Dubai. The Krakow student will be the first world title contender to represent Poland.

From a world top 20 player, Duda has suddenly moved to the edge of the top 10, and at 23, his best years are yet to come. Decades ago, legends Miguel Najdorf and Samuel Reshevsky were both born in Poland, but they competed in the candidates as representatives of Argentina and the United States.

Duda’s decisive victory over Carlsen came after three uneventful draws. He strategically dominated his opponent in a position where the Norwegian had little active play for his pieces, as did rising star Andrey Esipenko, 19, in his two wins in 2021 against the champion.

Carlsen’s opening choice against the Sicilian 1 e4 c5 went badly because 2 Nf3 d6 3 Bb5 + Bd7 4 Bxd7 + Qxd7 quickly turned into a kind of French where Black had traded bishops squared light and could infiltrate Carlsen’s dark square pawn front.

The world champion’s body language seemed static and uncomfortable as his position worsened. He later admitted he felt defeatist about his impending elimination in a position where Duda controlled the board with little counter play, and that mindset contributed to his missed draw chances when Duda, run out of time, was wrong in the end of the fool.

Freed from the burden of expectations in the third-place game on Wednesday and Thursday, Carlsen edged Russian Vladimir Fedoseev 2-0 with imaginative attacking play. He first won with Black in a King’s Indian where the White army was comically crushed in the right corner, and then, even more overwhelming, as White in a Caro-Kann 1 e4 c6.

The Women’s World Cup also saw a surprising result as Alexandra Kosteniuk, 37, who won the event in 2008 when she doubled in the world championship, defeated seed Aleksandra Goryachkina, 22. , by a daring offensive play.

It was a victory for Kosteniuk to savor. “When you’re young and winning you don’t really appreciate it,” she said. “As you get older, every victory feels like something amazing and you start to appreciate it a lot more.”

The 2021 World Cup counts as an important success and a milestone in bringing normal failures back over the board, especially since the Covid-19 cases at the start were absent in later rounds. He advanced the careers of Duda, Esipenko and several young talents, while the only English participant, Ravi Haria, twice beat highly regarded Grandmasters and bolstered his reputation as a rising star.

International online play continues this week with the Chessable Masters, the penultimate event of the Meltwater Champions Tour which ends in San Francisco in September.

Wesley So has been an outstanding player on the Tour and the only one who can consistently compete with Carlsen. The American champion was shaken when Jorden van Foreest beat him in 19 strokes in classic offensive style, but So is resilient and won his match anyway. The Chessable Masters ends this weekend (3:45 p.m. start) with the semi-finals on Friday and the final on Saturday-Sunday.

3775: 1 Be5 +! Rc6 2 Ra6 + Rd7 3 Rxe6! Kxe6 4 f5 + Kxf5 5 Bxg3 and win. The white king captures the two black pawns, then escorts the white h pawn to promotion. With K + B + h pawn v K, the bishop must control the queen square.


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