Opera Euro rapid chess: Carlsen enters final after fighting win

Magnus Carlsen’s inconsistency returned to haunt him before he managed to beat Maxime Vachier-Lagrave in the deciding Armageddon game and moved into the final.

File photo of Magnus Carlsen during the 83rd Tata Steel Chess tournament in Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands.   -  Getty Images

Magnus Carlsen’s inconsistency returned to haunt him before he managed to beat Maxime Vachier-Lagrave in the deciding Armageddon game and moved into the final of the $100,000 Opera Euro rapid online chess tournament on Friday.

After two drawn rapid games in the second set, Vachier delivered back-to-back blows to Carlsen to win 3-1 and force the tie-breaker. In the blitz games, both players won from the white side. In Armageddon, Carlsen played white and won in 40 moves.

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In the final, Carlsen will take on Wesley So, the man who beat him to clinch the Skilling Open, the first title of the season.

Having won the first set, So needed only two points from the best-of-four second set to advance. After two drawn games, he won the third to end the contest.

Semifinals: Set Two (Rapid): Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (Fra) bt Magnus Carlsen (Nor) 3-1; (Blitz): Carlsen drew with Vachier 1-1; Armageddon: Carlsen wins and advances to the final; Wesley So (USA) bt Teimour Radjabov (Aze) 2-1.