DUBAI / OSLO (VG) (Jan Nepomnjasjtsjij-Magnus Carlsen 0.5-0.5) The Norwegian world champion played a tough game and pushed the Russian player with his black slash. But Carlsen was not happy with his own efforts.
– That was bad. I’m particularly unhappy with some things I’ve tactically overlooked. All in all, a fair result, Magnus Carlsen tells VG.
– Is it good that the first party is over?
– Absolutely. It’s a black game and a draw which is a good result. I hope it will be better in the future, says the Norwegian.
He and Nepomnyashchy sat at the table for a while and discussed the party afterwards. At the press conference, the players expressed their opinions about the party.
– I was a little optimistic throughout the game. This was a strange streak of lions, with smaller planters, so I was hoping to build something in the middle. After we exchanged pieces, I could hope for nothing more than a tie, says the Russian.
– In white you will try to find it, but the lottery is good. He continues: It was a good match by Magnus.
Already at step 17, Nepomnyashchy struggled. He stopped – and he had to spend a long time. Thus, Carlsen got a huge advantage in the watch. But the Russians still had a very small advantage according to the computers – and on VGTV, Ariane Tari analyzed 20 moves:
– Most likely it will end in a draw, but it’s an exciting situation. The Norwegian chess player said white could make mistakes and then black could take over.
It was clear that Carlsen had prepared well for what might come, and after a few moves, the position was slightly calculated in Carlsen’s favour.
– That’s Magnus who decided to be too tough, VG’s John Ludwig Hammer thought of Carlsen’s position.
However, there is one thing that caused a headache for the Norwegian world champion. Early in the party, he ended up with one peasant below, and Carlsen struggled to equalize that lead in the Russian’s favor.
After the 33rd move, the analysis tool showed a 33% chance of Norway winning. With perfect play from Carlsen and some errors from the Russians, Carlsen’s win in the opening match was close at hand.
-Tari thinks that’s the best position Magnus got at the party.
– All credit to Team Magnus. That was too good to be true, says Agdestin, who declines to say who he actually works for.
However, the Norwegian did not find the winning moves and a tie still looked like the most likely outcome. This is how it ended, and the same thing after the first match in the World Cup.
– It’s a big party for Magnus. The first party is tense and there’s often a tie, says VG’s Espen Agdestine, so it’s OK to use a black party for that.
Hammer thinks it’s a victory for Magnus that he’s driving the party.
Both Carlsen and Nepomnyasheg were born in 1990 and played against each other for the first time already in October 2002.
While Carlsen’s previous four World Cup games have topped 12, this time there are 14 games in classic chess. If they were the same, that would be a break with fast chess. In 2018, all 12 matches ended in a draw, but Carlsen defended the title thanks to a win at Speed Controls.
Magnus Carlsen will defend his fourth World Cup title in Dubai over the next three weeks.
He beat Viswanathan Anand and became the world champion for the first time in 2013.
Since then, he has beaten his rivals Anand (2014), Serge Karjakin (2016) and Fabiano Caruana (2018).
Nepomnyashchy qualified to become a contender by winning the so-called candidate tournament, which – due to Corona – was played partly in 2020 and partly in 2021.
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