Five share lead after Anand holds Caruana

The Indian grandmaster was comfortably placed in this Queen’s Gambit Declined game but could not translate his superiority into a decisive advantage.

Viswanathan Anand dominated Fabiano Caruana for the better part of their eighth-round clash but eventually settled for a 44-move draw.

Viswanathan Anand dominated World No. 2 Fabiano Caruana for the better part of their eighth-round clash but eventually settled for a 44-move draw in the Sinquefield Cup chess tournament here on Sunday.

Anand was comfortably placed in this Queen’s Gambit Declined game but could not translate his superiority into a decisive advantage. He eventually drew following perpetual checks.

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For the first time, two games proved decisive in the day. The two Russian winners, Ian Nepomniachtchi and Sergey Karjakin joined the overnight leaders Anand, Caruana and Ding Liren at 4.5 points. Three rounds remain.

Nepomniachtchi, who lost the opening round to Anand, became the only player to score a second win after stopping Levon Aronian in 54 moves.

Karjakin recorded his first win after Frenchman Maxime Vachier-Lagrave misplayed a sharp position. Once Vachier could not remember his home preparation, Karjakin seized the opportunity to win in 51 moves.

Ding Liren, the other overnight leader, survived a stiff test from Magnus Carlsen and came out undefeated in 42 moves.

Eighth round results: Fabiano Caruana (USA, 4.5) drew with Viswanathan Anand (4.5); Ian Nepomniachtchi (Rus, 4.5) bt Levon Aronian (Arm, 3); Sergey Karjakin (Rus, 4.5) bt Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (Fra, 3.5); Magnus Carlsen (Nor, 4) drew with Ding Liren (Chn, 4.5); Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (Aze, 4) drew with Anish Giri (3.5); Hikaru Nakamura (USA, 4) drew with Wesley So (USA, 4).