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13th London Chess Classic 2023 R2: Gukesh survives a scare against Vitiugov

by Shahid Ahmed - 03/12/2023

GM D Gukesh seemed to be cruising towards a draw against GM Nikita Vitiugov in the second round until he misplayed. It gave the England no.1 great winning chances. However, he could not manage to seize his advantage, allowing the teenager to escape with a draw. GM Andrei Volokitin (UKR), GM M Amin Tabatabaei (IRI) and GM Mateusz Bartel (POL) scored victories against IM Shreyas Royal (ENG), GM Luke McShane (ENG) and GM Jules Moussard (ENG) respectively. Currently, Gukesh, Adams and Volokitin are at 1.5/2 each, followed by four players at 1/2 and three at 0.5/2 each. Gukesh faces Volokitin in the third round. Round 3 starts today at 2 p.m. local time, 7:30 p.m. IST. Follow the action live on FM WIM Anna-Maja Kazarian's twitch channel. Photo: Tao Bhokanandh

White wins three

In the first round, there were two decisive games. Both were won by players having the white pieces. In Round 2, three decisive games were won by the white pieces.

D Gukesh managed to save a lost same color bishop endgame against Nikita Vitiugov (ENG)

Vitiugov - Gukesh

Position after 39.Kb4

The above same color bishop endgame can end in a draw with a correct play by Black. However, incorrect play will lead to a win for White. The plan is simple for White, create a passed pawn on the queenside, use it to keep the black king occupied and then use his own king to capture Black's kingside pawns. It sounds easier in plan than execution. Black needed to start pushing pawns on the kingside to avert a loss. 39...h5 would have been fine for Black. However, 39...Bf7 started turning things in White's favor 40.a5 Kc7 41.Kc5 Bb3 42.Bc6 Bc2 43.b6+ axb6 44.axb6+ Kb8 45.Kd5 e4 46.Kd4 exf3 47.Bxf3 f4 48.Ke5 Bg6 49.Kf6 Be8

Position after 49...Be8

White cannot play Kg7 now due to h5 and Black manages to escape with a draw. Thus, 50.h3 or Be4 is what White needed to go. After 50.Ke7 Bb5 51.Kf6 Be8 White went 52.Kg7 h5 53.Kf6 g4 54.Be4 f3 and Black salvaged a draw eventually.

GM Andrei Volokitin (UKR) - IM Shreyas Royal (ENG): 1-0

GM M Amin Tabatabaei (IRI) - GM Luke McShane (ENG): 1-0

GM Hans Niemann (USA) - GM Michael Adams (ENG): 0.5-0.5

GM Mateusz Bartel (POL) - GM Jules Moussard (FRA): 1-0

Round 2 in progress

Schedule

There are one round each day starting from 2 p.m. local time, 6:30 p.m. IST. Rest day is on Wednesday 6th December 2023.

13th London Chess Classic will take place 1st to 10th December 2023

Prizes

1st £15000, 2nd £10000, 3rd £7500 and 4th £6000

Replay Round 2 games

Round 2 Results

Bo.No.Rtg NameResultName RtgNo.PGN
1102659
GMVolokitin, Andrei1 - 0IMRoyal, Shreyas
24386PGN
272692
GMTabatabaei, M. Amin1 - 0GMMcshane, Luke J
26315PGN
382667
GMNiemann, Hans Moke½ - ½GMAdams, Michael
26614PGN
492659
GMBartel, Mateusz1 - 0GMMoussard, Jules
26353PGN
512704
GMVitiugov, Nikita½ - ½GMGukesh, D
27202PGN

Details

Standings after Round 2

Rk.SNo NameFEDRtg TB1 
12
GMGukesh, DIND27201,5
4
GMAdams, MichaelENG26611,5
10
GMVolokitin, AndreiUKR26591,5
41
GMVitiugov, NikitaENG27041
7
GMTabatabaei, M. AminIRI26921
8
GMNiemann, Hans MokeUSA26671
9
GMBartel, MateuszPOL26591
83
GMMoussard, JulesFRA26350,5
5
GMMcshane, Luke JENG26310,5
6
IMRoyal, ShreyasENG24380,5

Details

Round 3 pairings

Bo.No.Rtg NameResultName RtgNo.PGN
122720
GMGukesh, DGMVolokitin, Andrei
265910
232635
GMMoussard, JulesGMVitiugov, Nikita
27041
342661
GMAdams, MichaelGMBartel, Mateusz
26599
452631
GMMcshane, Luke JGMNiemann, Hans Moke
26678
562438
IMRoyal, ShreyasGMTabatabaei, M. Amin
26927

Details

Links

Official site