Pairings round 4

Pairings round 4, Sunday May 7th

GM Arjun Erigaisi GM Gukesh D
GM Mishra Abhimanyu GM Nils Grandelius
GM Boris Gelfand GM Vincent Keymer
GM Peter Svidler GM Jorden Van Foreest

Round 3 summary by GM Stellan Brynell

Stellan Brynell
GM Stellan Brynell Photo: Lars OA Hedlund


Gukesh chose the Berlin Defence in the Ruy Lopez. Grandelius found a surprise bishop sacrifice on h7 that forced the black king to g6. Both players could have tried for a win at some stage, but it would have been very risky. Instead, it ended in a draw by repetition. A short but very interesting game, with many variations to analyse.


Keymer made an ambitious choice when he castled queen side in the Slav Defence. With a strong pair of bishops, Keymer had a very promising position, but when he was close to winning the game (28.Rf1 with the idea 28…Bg2 29.Rf2!, winning a piece) he lost control, and Mishra managed to turn the game around and eventually win it.

Photo: David Llada
Keymer – Mishra.

Van Foreest-Gelfand

A long variation in the Accelerated Sicilian Dragon quickly led to an interesting endgame, where white had a strong knight against a bad bishop. It still looked like Gelfand might be able to hold on, but he failed to find the correct setup, and at the end, van Foreest did not have any problems securing a full point.


Some original ideas in the English opening gave Svidler a comfortable game. Somewhat surprisingly, Erigiasi chose to give up the exchange. This did not look very convincing, and Svidler got to show his technical skills with moves like 22.Qa3 and 28.Rb4, with the idea Ra4. Black’s defence crumbled slowly and in the end, Svidler won easily.

Round 2 summary by GM Stellan Brynell

Stellan Brynell
GM Stellan Brynell Photo: Lars OA Hedlund

A very exciting round, all four games had a winner!


Keymer opted for the Ruy Lopez, and Gukesh soon applied some pressure with the white pieces. However, it was not until Keymer allowed 22.Bxh6 that things got real bad for black. In the complications that followed, Gukesh made no mistake and secured the win with exact play.


Svilder made some risky choices in the opening, playing 5…Bf5 and 6…Qc8. This gave Gelfand a chance to dominate the center of the board. After having found a couple of clever moves, Svidler managed to get some counter-play. In time trouble, Gelfand made a serious error when he played 32.Bxe5, which put him in a close to hopeless position. The correct move would have been to exchange the other bishop with 32.Bxd7.

Photo: David Llada.
Gelfand – Svidler round 2.

Mishra-Van Foreest

With the black pieces, Van Foreest opted for an extremely sharp version of the Catalan Defence. He launched an early attack on the king side, which looked very dangerous. Mishra defended well and after some inexact moves from black, he seized the initiative with 24.e4. When Keymer played 25…b5 (the final mistake), Mishra could open up the a-file and bring his rook to a7, after which black was totally lost. Despite some serious time trouble, Mishra found the right moves, and by move 40, it was all over.


Grandelius surprised Erigiasi with an unusual setup in the Najdorf Sicilian, and things soon looked promising. Erigiasi must have missed that after 19…Qb6, he could not play 20.b3, due to loosing material after 20…Qe3+. A desperate rook sacrifice by white kept the game going, but Grandelius kept his cool and managed to simplify into a winning endgame.

Pairings round 3

Pairings round 3, Saturday May 6th

GM Peter Svidler GM Arjun Erigaisi
GM Jorden Van Foreest GM Boris Gelfand
GM Vincent Keymer GM Mishra Abhimanyu
GM Nils Grandelius GM Gukesh D