More than ever, Magnus Carlsen needs to get closer to his (very ambitious) goal of reaching 2,900 Elo points – comparable to exceeding 9 meters in the long jump – to compensate for the discredit of giving up the world title defense next April. The Olympiad, being held in Chennai (India), is a good opportunity to get closer (out of 2,864 currently). But the first attempt was not just missed: The position with the Uruguayan George Meier in the second round was a draw after 77 moves and more than five hours, but the German-Uruguayan missed and gave up. Spain are among the leaders after beating Belgium (3.5-0.5); and also for women (4-0 against Malaysia).
The Norwegian’s body language, advertising his sponsors on a black shirt and jacket, which he wore with jeans and brown shoes, indicated from the second hour of the fight that something was wrong. The still champion got up and watched the games of the USA game, top seed, which Paraguay could only beat 2.5-1.5 thanks to Leinier Domínguez’s victory over Cuba (tie in Caruana-Bachmann, Delgado-So and Shankland-Zacarias). . But just a minute later, even though it wasn’t his turn, he returned to his chair and fully focused on his game.
Born in Germany, Meier has been playing with the Uruguayan flag for eight months. He’s a mid-level grandmaster (2,613 points) but a rival that Carlsen should win at least half the games. However, the Scandinavian failed to get the fight into a position where he usually wins by exhausting his opponents. Despite gaining a pawn advantage, the German-Uruguayan stubbornly fought back until, overcome with fatigue and overwhelmed by the clock, he could no longer be accurate. In any case, Norway, ranked 3rd in the starting rankings behind USA and India (who beat Moldova 3.5:0.5), won the game easily thanks to Tari and Christiansen’s early victories over Hoffman and Roselli (4 :0). .
Spain also fell short of the forecast (3.5-0.5) against Belgium, with wins for Shirov, Vallejo and Iturrizaga (Jaime Santos was sidelined) and draws for Antón. The girls also won (4-0) against Malaysia.
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