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Airthings Masters Final 1: Four exciting draws

by Shahid Ahmed - 26/02/2022

Ian Nepomniachtchi and Magnus Carlsen played some exciting chess in the Finals of Meltwater Champions Chess Tour Airthings Masters. All four games ended in draws. However, out of them, three games felt like could have a decisive result. Carlsen was winning in all three of them, although Nepomniachtchi had his chance in the most exciting game of the day, the second one. One cannot shake the feeling that the worldly events are certainly affecting the players. It is evident from their games. A winner will certainly be decided today. Finals continue tonight at 10:30 p.m. IST. Photo: Amruta Mokal

Is tie-break in the cards?

The second day of the Finals will decide the winner | Photo: Amruta Mokal

Carlsen - Nepomniachtchi: 2-2

First game was a quiet draw. Things heated up in the second game as Carlsen found himself in a good position.

Nepomniachtchi - Carlsen, Game 2

Position after 25.Nxh6

White should have played 25.Bd3 first because 25.Nxh6 is met by Rxb1 26.Rxb1 Ng6 27.Qg5 gxh6 28.Qxh6+ Ke8 puts Black in control. However, practically it was not that easy to convert. After a back and forth play involving multilayered endgame, it eventually ended in a draw.

Carlsen got a good chance to push for a win in the third game but he did not seize it.

Carlsen - Nepomniachtchi, Game 3

Position after 35...Qg7

36.R5d6 Nxd6 37.Rxg7+ Kxg7 38.Qxd6 was winning for White. However, the world champion opted for 36.Rf5 and the game eventually ended in a draw.

Nepomniachtchi blundered a piece in the fourth game but Carlsen was unable to maximize it.

Nepomniachtchi - Carlsen, Game 4

Position after 35...Ra2

36.Qc1 Rxe2 37.b7 and now Qb8 was winning. Black played 37...Qc7 allowed White to save the game 38.Qa3.

Replay the live stream

Airthings Masters 2022 Finals 1 Live commentary by IM Sagar Shah | Video: ChessBase India

Replay Final 1 games

Finals Day 1 result

Nepomniachtch will face Carlsen in the Finals | Photo: chess24

All games will start from 10:30 p.m. IST between 19th and 26th February 2022.

Links

Official site

Tournament regulations


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