Chess Candidates 2024, Round 1 Highlights: Praggnanandhaa-Firouzja; Vaishali-Humpy, Vidit-Gukesh all end in draw

FIDE Candidates 2024: Get the updates, analysis, commentary and highlights of the first round of the FIDE Candidates 2024, happening in Toronto, Canada on April 5, Friday (India). 

Updated : Apr 05, 2024 04:59 IST

Get the live updates from the first round of FIDE Candidates 2024.
Get the live updates from the first round of FIDE Candidates 2024.

Get the live updates from the first round of FIDE Candidates 2024.

Follow Sportstar’s highlights of the first round of the FIDE Candidates 2024, happening in Toronto, Canada on April 5, Friday (IST). This was Mayank and Pranay Rajiv who took you through all the live action.

Vidit Gujrathi vs D. Gukesh Live board interactive

R. Vaishali vs Koneru Humpy Live board interactive

  • April 05, 2024 04:58
    Women’s Candidates: Crosstable after Round 1

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  • April 05, 2024 04:57
    Candidates: Crosstable after Round 1

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  • April 05, 2024 04:53
    Round 1 report

    FIDE Candidates 2024, Round 1: Draws dominate day one in Canada

    The Candidates 2024 tournament witnessed an uneventful opening day as seven of the eight opening matches ended in a draw on Friday in Toronto, Canada.

  • April 05, 2024 04:53
    Zhongyi 1-0 Tingjie

    The only decisive result of the day came from the all-Chinese clash between Li Tingjie and Tan Zhongyi. The latter converted a beautiful endgame to win with black pieces.

  • April 05, 2024 04:26
    Zhongyi vs Tingjie

    We will get the first result very soon as Tan Zhongyi is just moments away from sealing her game against Li Tingjie. 

    Screenshot 2024-04-05 042503.png

  • April 05, 2024 04:20
    Handshake time!

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    There comes the customary handshake after the match. Pragg holds Firouzja to a draw. 

  • April 05, 2024 04:15
    Pragg 0.5-0.5 Firouzja

    The last game in the open category between India’s R. Praggnanadhaa and Alireza Firouzja has also ended in a draw! A very complex position simplified eventually as all five Indians take half a point from round one. 

  • April 05, 2024 04:12
    Hikaru 0.5-0.5 Caruana

    The heavyweight clash between tournament favourites Fabiano Caruana and Hikaru Nakamura has ended in a draw! The draw came by mutual agreement on the 41st move. 

  • April 05, 2024 04:06
    Vaishali escapes Humpy!
  • April 05, 2024 04:02
    Tan Zhongyi dominates Li Tingjie

    In the all-Chinese battle between Tan Zhongyi and Li Tingjie, the former is crushing the latter and we may get to see the first decisive result there! 

  • April 05, 2024 03:59
    Pragg vs Firouzja and Hikaru vs Caruana in exciting climax

    Both Pragg and Hikaru have 16 minutes on the clock while their opponents, Firouzja and Caruana have four minutes each in a complex position. Mind you, 30 additional minutes come with 30 seconds increment per move after move 40 for the open category. 

  • April 05, 2024 03:48
    Vaishali 0.5-0-5 Humpy

    Vaishali navigates through big time scare and somehow manages to draw her game against experienced Koneru Humpy. Both all-Indian games have ended in a draw! 

  • April 05, 2024 03:41
    Anna Muzychuk 0.5-Salimova

    Here we go, another result! Anna Muzychuk and Nurgyul Salimova have also ended their game in repetition. The rook checks the king, the king moves, the rook checks the king again and it is a perpetual draw. 

  • April 05, 2024 03:39
    Goryachkina 0.5-0.5 Lagno

    The first result has come up in the women’s category. In the all-Russian battle, Kateryna Lagno draws her game with Aleksandra Goryachkina with repetition under 40 moves. All three games have ended in a draw till now. 


  • April 05, 2024 03:35
    Alireza vs Pragg

    Now Alireza Firouzja is low on clock vs Pragg. He took over 16 minutes to play his 26th move, king to g3 and now has only 13 minutes left while Pragg has over half an hour left. 

  • April 05, 2024 03:32
    Vaishali continues to stay low on clock vs Humpy

    Vaishali has now just under a minute left on her clock. Very interesting to see how she navigates through 17 more moves before 30 minutes of time addition. 

  • April 05, 2024 03:24
    Vaishali in time trouble vs Humpy

    Although the position is objectively equal and both women’s category has 30-second increment per move, R. Vaishali seems to be in huge time trouble. She has only 3 minutes on the clock and is only halfway (20 moves) through the game until they get 30 additional minutes. 

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  • April 05, 2024 03:15
    Hikaru vs Caruana

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    The position is like this after the 23rd move. 

  • April 05, 2024 03:14
    Hikaru vs Caruana

    Hikaru took 20 minutes and 10 seconds to play his 22nd move -- bishop to a3 which according to an inaccuracy according to the engines. After rook takes pawn, rook takes pawn from both players, the engines prefer Fabiano Caruana’s position. 

  • April 05, 2024 03:03
    Gukesh vs Vidit

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    The moment when Vidit informed the arbiter about the repeated moves. 

  • April 05, 2024 02:59
    Gukesh 0.5-0.5 Vidit

    A big result coming up, Vidit draws with Gukesh with repetition. Gukesh finds the only move, bishop c3 and after Vidit’s queen to a3, both players repeat the moves. 

  • April 05, 2024 02:48
    Gukesh vs Vidit

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    Vidit took 40 minutes to play his bishop to g4! He is sacrificing his bishop but don’t be fooled by this move. If the white in this position takes the bishop with his pawn at f3, the black’s rook at f8 will jump to c8, attacking the white’s queen and as soon as he moves his queen away he will lose his rook at d2! A bit complicated to understand but what else were you expecting from two super GMs. 

  • April 05, 2024 02:28
    Nepo 0.5-0.5 Abasov

    The first result of Round 1 is here, Nepomniachtchi and Abasov’s game ended in a draw by threefold repetition. 

  • April 05, 2024 02:15
    Nepo vs Abasov

    Abasov has a doubled pawn on the b file, whereas Nepomniachtchi has a passer in a pawn. Abasov, who has offered a rook exchange will have to manouvre carefully if he wants half a point from this game. 

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  • April 05, 2024 02:04
    Pragg vs Firouzja

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    The Frenchman, Alireza played exf6 -- En Passant and took nearly 20 minutes to play his next move, pawn push at f4 which now gives both Pragg and Alireza equal time on the board. 

  • April 05, 2024 02:00
    Nepo vs Abasov

    Okay, so we’re clear-cut into the endgame in the Nepomniachtchi vs Abasov game. We have a rook left on the board from both sides with few pawns which means the game is ending towards a predictable draw. 

  • April 05, 2024 01:54
    Nepo vs Abasov

    Screenshot 2024-04-05 015157.png

    Two-time Candidates winner, Ian Nepomniachtchi and Nijat Abasov is going to an endgame. They have exchanged three pawns, a pair of bishop and knight and queens are also off the board!

  • April 05, 2024 01:48
    Caruana vs Nakamura

    Five-time Candidates player Fabi is down to 57 minutes vs compatriot Nakamura, who has over 1 hr 30 mins on the board. 

  • April 05, 2024 01:34
    Caruana vs Nakamura

    Despite trailing Nakamura by more than 30 minutes, Caruana has already spent more than eight minutes on his next move. 

    Finally, Caruana makes a move. Pushes his queen to b7. 

  • April 05, 2024 01:20
    Humpy vs Vaishali

    Another e4-e5 start but Humpy and Vaishali go for an Italian opening with bishops to c4 and c5. 

  • April 05, 2024 01:15
    Nepomniachtchi vs Abasov

    Abasov puts his Queen up on offer for Nepomniachtchi. The Azerbaijan GM is a bit under the pump against Nepomniachtchi. 

  • April 05, 2024 01:08
    What is Ruy Lopez Morphy Variation?

    Want to know more about the opening in played in the Alireza vs Pragg game -- Ruy Lopez: Morphy Variation? 

    By far the most commonly played Black third move in the Ruy Lopez game is the Morphy variation, 3...a6, which “puts the question” to the white bishop. Although 3...a6 was known earlier, it became popular after it was played by world champion Paul Morphy. White has only two good options, 4. Bxc6 or 4. Ba4. The main point to 3...a6 is that after the common retreat 4.Ba4, Black will have the possibility of breaking the pin on his queen knight by playing ...b5. In fact, White must take some care to not fall into the Noah’s Ark Trap in which Black traps White’s king bishop on the b3-square with a ...a6, ...b5, and ...c4 pawn advance on the queenside.


  • April 05, 2024 01:00
    Alireza forces Pragg to think

    The Frenchman seems to be still in his opening preparation. He had 1 hr 55 minutes on the board before Pragg played his queen to h4 for which he took over 14 minutes. 

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  • April 05, 2024 00:56
    Ruy Lopez on Firouzja vs Pragg

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    Firouzja’s bishop to b5 and Pragg’s a6 makes this a Ruy Lopez opening

  • April 05, 2024 00:51
    King's Pawn on the board in Firouzja vs Pragg

    It’s e4-e5 start in the Alireza Firouzja vs Praggnanandhaa match. 

  • April 05, 2024 00:33
    Vidit vs Gukesh: Tarrasch Defense: Symmetrical Variation

    Screenshot 2024-04-05 003044.png

    After Vidit’s c5 move, the queen’s gambit declined version changes to Tarrasch defense. 

  • April 05, 2024 00:25
    1.d4 - Queen Pawn move from Gukesh

    Gukesh starts with queen pawn 1.d4 move from while. Vidit plays central his pawn to d5. 

  • April 05, 2024 00:05
    Live action soon

    We are moments away from the live action.

  • April 04, 2024 23:52

    The prize money for the open category is €48,000 (INR 43.48 Lakh) for first place, €36,000 for second place, and €24,000 for third place (with players on the same number of points sharing prize money, irrespective of tie-breaks), plus €3,500 per half-point for every player, for a total prize pool of €500,000.

    In the women’s candidates, the prize money is half that of the open category, with the winner getting €24,000, €18,000 for second place, and €12,000 for third place.

    In addition, €1,750 per half-point for every player, for a total prize pool of €250,000.

  • April 04, 2024 23:39

    The time control for the open category is 120 minutes for the first 40 moves, then 30 minutes for the rest of the game, plus a 30-second increment per move starting from move 41.

    For the women’s category, it is 90 minutes for the first 40 moves, then 30 minutes for the rest of the game, plus a 30-second increment per move starting from move one.

  • April 04, 2024 23:32

    Both the Candidates and the Women’s Candidates are a double round-robin tournament with each player playing the rest of the field twice in a total of 14 rounds.

    Players get 1 point for a win, ½ point for a draw and 0 points for a loss.

  • April 04, 2024 23:22

    FIDE Candidates 2024: Praggnanandhaa, Gukesh and Vidit look to punch above their weight in open category

    Three Indians - R. Praggnanandhaa, D. Gukesh and Vidit Gujrathi - will compete in FIDE Candidates 2024, commencing in Toronto’s The Great Hall, at 12 midnight IST on Thursday to find the challenger to the reigning World champion Ding Liren.

  • April 04, 2024 23:17
    Women’s Candidates Qualification Route

    Kateryna Lagno (FIDE, 2542) – qualified as the 2022−23 Women’s Grand Prix winner.

    Aleksandra Goryachkina (FIDE, 2553) – qualified as the 2022−23 Women’s Grand Prix runner-up.

    Nurgyul Salimova (Bulgaria, 2426) – qualified as the 2023 Women’s World Cup runner-up.

    Anna Muzychuk (Ukraine, 2520) – qualified as the third-place finisher at the 2023 Women’s World Cup.

    Vaishali R (India, 2481) – qualified as the 2023 Women’s Grand Swiss winner.

    Tan Zhongyi (China, 2521) – qualified as the 2023 Women’s Grand Swiss runner-up.

    Humpy Koneru (India, 2546) – qualified as the best by rating on January 1, 2024. The rating spot became available as a replacement for the Women’s World Cup winner, since Goryachkina had already qualified through the WGP.

  • April 04, 2024 23:14
    Candidates Qualificaion Route

    Ian Nepomniachtchi (FIDE, 2758) – qualified as the previous World Championship match runner-up.

    Praggnanandhaa R (India, 2747) – qualified as the 2023 World Cup runner-up. 

    Fabiano Caruana (USA, 2804) – qualified as the third-place finisher at the 2023 World Cup. 

    Nijat Abasov (Azerbaijan, 2632) – qualified as the fourth-place finisher at the 2023 World Cup after the winner, Magnus Carlsen, declined his right to participate. 

    Vidit Gujrathi (India, 2747) – qualified as the 2023 Grand Swiss winner. 

    Hikaru Nakamura (USA, 2789) – qualified as the 2023 Grand Swiss runner-up. 

    Alireza Firouzja (France, 2760) – qualified as the best by rating on January 1, 2024. 

    Gukesh D (India, 2747) – qualified as the 2023 FIDE Circuit winner.

  • April 04, 2024 22:48
    New to chess? Thinking what Cadidates is? we got you!
  • April 04, 2024 22:45
    Round 1 pairings

    Open Category:

    Fabiano Caruana vs. Hikaru Nakamura 

    Nijat Abasov vs. Ian Nepomniachtchi 

    Alireza Firouzja vs. Praggnanandhaa R 

    Gukesh D vs. Vidit Gujrathi 

    Women’s Category:

    Aleksandra Goryachkina vs. Kateryna Lagno 

    Anna Muzychuk vs. Nurgyul Salimova 

    Lei Tingjie vs. Tan Zhongyi 

    Vaishali R vs. Humpy Koneru

  • April 04, 2024 22:37
    Candidates 2024 Players in action

    Open Category: Ian Nepomniachtchi, Fabiano Caruana, Alireza Firouzja, Hikaru Nakamura, Nijat Abasov, Vidit Gujrathi, R. Praggnanandhaa, D. Gukesh

    Women’s Category: Lei Tingjie, Kateryna Lagno, Aleksandra Goryachkina, Anna Muzychuk, Nurgyul Salimova, Tan Zhongyi, R. Vaishali, Koneru Humpy

  • April 04, 2024 22:24
    Live Streaming Info

    Where to watch the live stream of the Candidates 2024 chess?

    The live streaming of the Candidates 2024 will be available on the FIDE YouTube channel.

    Which TV channel will broadcast the Candidates 2024 chess?

    There has been no official announcement for the broadcasting of the Candidates 2024 in India.

  • April 04, 2024 22:08

    Hello and welcome to Sportstar’s Live coverage of the first round of the FIDE Candidates 2024, happening in Toronto, Canada on April 5, Friday (India).

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