Carlsen gets 'lucky' against Giri, wins Chessable Masters

Riding on a brilliantly crafted victory in the first game, Magnus Carlsen kept a fighting Anish Giri at bay to claim the second set 2.5-.1.5 and win the Chessable Masters title.

File photo of Anish Giri and Magnus Carlsen during the Tata Steel Chess Tournament.   -  Special Arrangement

Riding on a brilliantly crafted victory in the first game, Magnus Carlsen kept a fighting Anish Giri at bay to claim the second set 2.5-.1.5 and win $150,000 Chessable Masters title on Saturday.

Having won the first set 3.5-2.5 on Saturday, Carlsen won the best-of-three set match 2-0 and became richer by $45,000. This is Carlsen’s second title in the first three legs of the million-dollar Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour.

Carlsen came close to winning the second game but Giri held on for a draw. But in the last two rapid games, it was Carlsen who stayed on the defensive and managed to come out unscathed.

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In fact, Giri appeared set to stun Carlsen in the fourth game - much like he did on Saturday - but missed the winning momentum, and realised it the moment he made the move, held his head in despair and soon forced a draw through perpetual checks.

On the day, Giri had his chances in the second, third and fourth games. However, he missed all the winning opportunities.

“Frankly, Anish played better than me in the last three games. I was just lucky to get away,” acknowledged Carlsen after the final.

A disappointed Giri, who ensured $27,000, said, “I thought I played well till the end, and was completely missing. It was not that I became casual when I was close to winning, but I missed one queen-move.”

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But the talking-point of the day was Carlsen’s sheer brilliance in the first game.

In a memorable execution of home-preparation, Carlsen blitzed his moves and at one stage gained two minutes to the 15 minutes of starting time. On the other hand, Giri fell back on the clock.

Thereafter, Carlsen sacrificed a central pawn and later gave up a rook to weave a foolproof checkmating net. The beauty of Carlsen’s display was the manner in which he pushed a central pawn to the seventh rank, with Giri’s queen, rook and bishop watching helplessly. Giri, with only four seconds on his clock while Carlsen still had 7:42 minutes, shook his head and resigned.

Final:

Set Two: Rapid (Game One): Magnus Carlsen (Nor) bt Anish Giri (Ned); (Game Two) Giri drew with Carlsen; (Game Three) Carlsen drew with Giri; (Game Four): Giri drew with Carlsen.

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