Russian Ian Nepomniachtchi wins Chess Candidates Tournament – Sport


YEKATERINBURG, April 26. / TASS /. Russian grandmaster Ian Nepomniachtchi won the FIDE (World Chess Federation) Chess Candidates Tournament on Monday with one round to lose from the international competition, currently hosted by the Russian city of Yekaterinburg.

In the penultimate round on Monday, the 30-year-old Russian drew against Frenchman Maxime Vachier-Lagrave to accumulate a total of 8.5 points after 13 rounds.

Nepomniachtchi has become off-limits for finalist Anish Giri of the Netherlands as Giri holds 7.5 points in aggregate following his loss on Monday to fellow Russian chess player Alexander Grischuk.

“Ian Nepomniachtchi is the winner of the FIDE Candidates Tournament with one round to lose and a new Challenger for the World Championship against Magnus Carlsen. Congratulations!” a statement on the official FIDE website reads.

“In the penultimate round, he drew with Maxime Vachier-Lagrave while Alexander Grischuk helped his compatriot by beating Anish Giri,” the statement added.

The 2020 Chess Candidates Tournament, which was disrupted last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and resumed this year, must decide who of the world’s top eight Grandmasters would win the right to face the World Champion. world title Magnus Carlsen of Norway.

Speaking to reporters after his match against Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, Nepomniachtchi said: “I can’t name a particular match as decisive.”

“It was extremely important to get victories against Kirill [Alekseenko of Russia] and against [China’s] Wang Hao, “the Russian grandmaster said at a press conference in Yekaterinburg.” In fact, when I worked as a commentator in the two previous contestants’ tournaments, I realized that a player should never get frantic and lose matches. “

“You can have boring draws, but you should never lose a game,” said Nepomniachtchi.

The Russian chess player also said he plans to rest and sleep well after the Yekaterinburg tournament.

“I was definitely under pressure and couldn’t sleep at all for my first three games and that’s why I went for a quick draw against Anish [Giri]”he said.” I managed to get a good sleep before the match against Kirill [Alekseenko], but that does not mean that the voltage has gone out. It was extremely difficult to relax at that time. “

The tournament kicked off in the Russian city of Yekaterinburg in the Urals on March 15, 2020 and was scheduled to end on April 5, 2020, but was suspended shortly after its start as Russia was forced to close all international flights March 27 amid the ongoing global crisis. Covid pandemic19.

Nepomniachtchi is now set to fight for the world chess crown against Norway’s Magnus Carlsen in Dubai from November 24 to December 16. The tournament in Dubai will take place as part of Expo 2021 Dubai and is offering two million euros ($ 2.4 million) in cash prizes.

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