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Fabiano Caruana wins Superbet Classic for the second year in-a-row after a hat-trick in Playoffs

by Shahid Ahmed - 06/07/2024

Anish Giri (NED) scored the sole win of the final round against Fabiano Caruana (USA). It forced him to play more games in Playoffs. Alireza Firouzja (FRA) was winning against R Praggnanandhaa. That win would have made him a clear champion. However, the teenager denied him the full point. Caruana won all three of his Playoff games against Gukesh, Firouzja and Praggnanandhaa. That made him clinch Superbet Classic for the second consecutive year. Firouzja won two, Gukesh one and Praggnanandhaa could not manage to score any point. Gukesh won his sole Playoff game against Praggnanadhaa. Caruana won US$ 68750. Firouzja, Praggnanandhaa and Gukesh received $58750 each. All four of them scored 9.25 GCT points. The next GCT event is SuperUnited Rapid and Blitz in Zagreb, Croatia from 9th to 14th July. Photo: Grand Chess Tour/Lennart Ootes

Caruana scorches the competition in Playoffs

"I feel good at the moment buy overall of course it was a pretty bad day. I played terribly. Anish punished me. I played a poor game but he played well. Then I wasn't thinking about winning the tournament anymore. I thought Alireza wins his game and that's it, I deserve to not win. Probably I do even as it turned out. I was lucky that I got to play a Playoff. I don't know if I played well in the Playoff, at least I was happy to be there." - Fabiano Caruana on adventurous final day at Superbet Chess Classic 2024. "Well it was good news of course. I already had a bit of a feeling because when I left the game after I lost, it seemed like Alireza was not quite as easily winning as before and he seemed a little bit like maybe he had missed something. He was shaking his head a bit. So I had like maybe 10% hope. Anyway I didn't want to worry about it too much because Playoff, it's still not like huge chances to win but I am just happy to be there." - Caruana on his feelings when he got to know that he has to play a few more games at Playoff.  

Fabiano Caruana (USA) won Superbet Classic 2024 convincingly despite a final round loss | Photo: Grand Chess Tour/Lennart Ootes

Fabiano Caruana won US$ 68750, with Andreea Maria Paul, Founder, RECARO and Michael Khodarkovsky, President, Kasparov Chess Foundation | Photo: Grand Chess Tour/Lennart Ootes
Caruana Laughs Last & Best: I Played Terribly! | Video: Saint Louis Chess Club

Giri - Caruana: 1-0

The last time Anish Giri (NED, 2745) defeated Fabiano Caruana (USA, 2796) in a Classical rated game was at 84th Tata Steel 2022. In the final round, Giri made Caruana go through Playoffs.

Position after 30...Rdd7?

30...Rdd7? allowed White to get rid of the strong knight 31.Bxe4 fxe4 32.Nc5 Rd6 33.e3 White went on to gain the e4-pawn and eventually win the game.

Anish Giri analyzes his win over Fabiano Caruana | Video: ChessBase India

Anish Giri scored a consolation victory over Fabiano Caruana | Photo: Grand Chess Tour/Lennart Ootes

Fabiano Caruana spectates Praggnanandhaa saving a tough endgame against Alireza Firouzja (FRA) | Photo: Grand Chess Tour/Lennart Ootes

Round 9 in progress | Photo: Grand Chess Tour/Lennart Ootes

Playoff scenario | Photo: Grand Chess Tour/Saint Louis Chess Club

Playoff: Caruana - Gukesh: 1-0

After winning the tournament, Caruana mentioned in the interview that - "...first game was very tough but I think things went very well. I got nice advantage and I was pressing Gukesh. Maybe I didn't convert it very well and he was tenaciously defending. That was a very important game."

Caruana - Firouzja: 1-0

"...the second game was also totally crazy but I felt like Alireza was on backfoot..." - Caruana on his second game at the Playoffs.

Praggnanandhaa - Caruana: 0-1

"...third game, it turns out didn't really matter. I was losing for sure, even at the end if he played 44.Rd7. But yeah, three wins, of course I can't complain." - Caruana on his third game and winning all games at the Playoffs.

Fabiano Caruana scoring his third consecutive win at the Playoff against R Praggnanandhaa | Photo: Grand Chess Tour/Lennart Ootes

Ian Nepomiachtchi watching the Playoffs live with GM Vladimir Chuchelov (BEL) in the audience | Photo: Grand Chess Tour/Lennart Ootes

A Fabiano Caruana fan takes a selfie with the winner | Photo: Grand Chess Tour/Lennart Ootes

Replay live stream

Replay Grand Chess Tour Superbet Classic Round 9 Live Commentary by IM Sagar Shah and Amruta Mokal | Video: ChessBase India

Schedule and Format

Superbet Chess Classic will have one round played each day from 26th June to 5th July 2024. Each round starts at 3 p.m. local time, 5:30 p.m. IST. Except the last round on 5th July which will start at 2 p.m. local time, 4:30 p.m. IST. The sole rest day is on Monday 1st July. It will be a 10-player Round Robin event. Time control will be 120 minutes KO + 30 sec./move.


The total prize fund of each Classical event is the double of Rapid and Blitz events - US$ 350000.

Replay Round 9 and Playoff games

Playoff results

Round 1 on 2024/07/05 at 19.30
112738GMCaruana, Fabiano1 - 0GMGukesh, D26474
222724GMFirouzja, Alireza1 - 0GMPraggnanandhaa, R27093
Round 2 on 2024/07/05 at 20.10
142647GMGukesh, D1 - 0GMPraggnanandhaa, R27093
212738GMCaruana, Fabiano1 - 0GMFirouzja, Alireza27242
Round 3 on 2024/07/05 at 20.50
122724GMFirouzja, Alireza1 - 0GMGukesh, D26474
232709GMPraggnanandhaa, R0 - 1GMCaruana, Fabiano27381


Final standings

Fabiano Caruana won the tournament, Firouzja, Gukesh and Praggnanandhaa earned the same GCT points and prize money | Photo: Grand Chess Tour


Official site

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