King Hans lets chess speak for itself | So Good News


In the second round of the 2022 Sinquefield Cup, the games went both ways: hard, smart play for some, hard-fought battles for others.

The only winner of the first round, World Champion GM Magnus Carlsen, was drawn and American Major General Hans Nieman won a thrilling game against GM Shahryar Mamedyarov. They were almost joined by GM Fabiano Caruana, who had to settle for a draw despite being in a winning position.

The second round of the 2022 edition of the Sinquefield Cup featured plenty of sharp games, missed opportunities and great technique.

“Chess speaks for itself,” Niemann said in a postgame interview after winning a game against Carlsen in Miami. He may or may not love that streak, but on Saturday, he did exactly that, letting his chess do the talking.

After his machine-like performance in the first round, the world champion had to be trampled by security before the start of the second round.

He might be the Man of Steel, but nothing rang a bell.


After Carlsen crushed GM Ian Nepomniachtchi in the first round, he seemed content with an off day in the second round against GM Levon Aronian. As Black, he channeled his inner Ulf (referring to the great Swedish general Ulf Andersson, who was one of the best players of the 1970s and 1980s, often ranked in the top five in the world, and known for being extremely tough and tough). Beat) playing Andersson’s old favorite line in Bogo-Indian, 4…Bxd2+.

After a quick handshake at the start of the game and a fairly bloodless draw, the players shook hands again. Photo: Lennart Ootes / Grand Chess Tour.

The combatants have played this line against each other before, but that was in 2013 and Carlsen played 8…dxc4 and was eliminated.

The game soon ended in a tight draw, and any remaining excitement in the game disappeared when the world champion called for massive exchanges with 19…Qc5. Soon, and at a fast pace, the players found a way to repeat the moves and settle for a draw that suited them both.


It’s an exciting time for American chess. There has never been such a favorable environment for chess players. An influx of strong players from abroad, complemented by homegrown talent, has crowded the top of US chess. Few have made the leap at Elo like Niemann, who went from international master approaching 2700 to strong grandmaster.

In Saturday’s game, he faced “veteran” Mamedyarov, who loves a good fight, and the players found just that.

In the English opening, Niemann took a pair of isolated c-pawns, then threw caution to the wind and threw past the queen!

Wild hair, wildly unfurling, throwing caution to the wind. Niemann came ready to fight again on Saturday. Photo: Lennart Ootes / Grand Chess Tour

It was a shotgun start to an exciting middle game in which Mamedyarov looked to have a chance to gain an advantage, but after White’s exchange sacrifice, Black missed the crucial 20…d6!, allowing Nieman to cover the queenside for a long time instead. enough to ensure priority.

After that, neither side played well, but it was an interesting match in which White always dominated. In the end, Niemann turned his advantage into a full point.

The game is our pick as the game of the day.


Since settling in the United States, Major General Leinier Dominguez has left his mark on chess in this country. Patient and personable, he joined the FIDE Grand Prix, the US Olympic team and the Grand Chess Tour. He is a principled player, knows his openings well, but can be a little predictable in his game. His recent games against Caruana have been telling for Petroff as he has managed to get good or at least playable positions.

So it’s no surprise that players have made quite a few moves on Petroff. After 20 steps, Caruana used only eight minutes, while Dominguez spent twice as much, 17 minutes. But then the former world number two, despite having the highest move of the engines, was overlooked by Dominguez in preparation for home 21.Bxc5!?

Poor preparation and Caruana’s missed chances. Photo: Lennart Ootes / Grand Chess Tour.

This put Dominguez in the tank and cost him a lot of time in the next few steps. But despite this, Black could not find a good defense and soon found himself in serious trouble. Caruana had a few promising continuations, most notably 27.Qd7 leading to what looked like a relatively simple victory.

But as any player who has experienced a form crisis can testify: when things don’t work out, nothing goes your way, not even really good positions. Therefore, despite Dominguez giving him more opportunities to claim a large or clear advantage, Caruana squandered them all.

Lucky escape with Dominguez against Caruana in the second round. Photo: Lennart Ootes / Grand Chess Tour.

In the end, he was forced to accept a draw by allowing Black to deliver checks with his shields.

Of course, it was a huge disappointment for Caruana, who has struggled since midway through the Candidates Tournament, sliding down the rankings, losing a bucketful of ranking points, and is currently the top seed among American players. took nine places in the direct rating.


In the first round, GM Maxime Vachier-Lagrave held an expert match in Najdorf Sicily. In the second round, he faced off again, but this time against American general Wesley So, one of the best specialists on the black side of this opening, Ruy Lopez with the white pieces in Berlin.

Vachier-Lagrave rolls up his sleeves and prepares for battle. Photo: Lennart Ootes / Grand Chess Tour.

The French grandmaster is one of the few top players to consistently enter the Berlin Wall endgame as White, apparently insisting on trying to win a position that some see as advantageous. If anything, you could call it consistent in its self-beliefs and somewhat speculative revelations.

In the second round, he held a slight advantage, but there was never a big wave in the calm seas represented by So. At the end of the game, White won a pawn, but it was still completely equal, and eventually the players began to repeat the moves.


Nepomniacci, the winner and disappointment of the relatively recent Candidates Tournament, and GM Alireza Firuzja, both did not play in the recent Chess Olympiad in Chennai and therefore have not played any serious games since the Madrid tournament. Neither was satisfactory in the first round, with the Russian losing to Carlsen and Firouzja having trouble with White and Caruana.

In the second round, Nepomniachtchi chose a very rare line in Catalan. This involves a pawn sacrifice and instead Firuzja has to deal with a somewhat awkwardly positioned queen and a passive position.

Nepomniachtchi’s exciting, powerful opening was rewarded with full marks. Photo: Lennart Ootes / Grand Chess Tour.

Finally, Firouzja replaced some parts and managed to enter the end of a shield. It looked like he could save her. However, in practice it turned out to be much more difficult than it looked and Nepomniacci had a good win after yesterday’s cold shower.

All games are Day 2

Standings after the 2nd round

Standings after the second round

The 2022 Sinquefield Cup is the fifth and final leg of the 2022 Grand Chess Tour. 10 players will compete in a round robin system for their share of the $319,000 prize pool.

Coverage of the 2022 Sinquefield Cup


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