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YOUNG Nor­we­gian Mag­nus Carlsen was un­stop­pable at the sec­ond Pearl Spring tour­na­ment in Nan­jing, China, a cat­e­gory 16 six-player round robin.

Scor­ing six wins and four draws, he fin­ished 2.5 points clear of the field.

Carlsen’s per­for­mance rat­ing was an as­tound­ing 3002. He sup­plants In­dia’s Vishy Anand as No. 2, be­low Bul­garia’s Ve­selin Topalov, in the pro­gres­sive world rank­ings.

In the fi­nal round, Rus­sia’s Dmitry Jakovenko had the temer­ity to ven­ture into ter­ri­tory ex­plored by Carlsen’s men­tor, Garry Kas­parov, in his re­cent ex­hi­bi­tion match against Ana­toly Kar­pov in Va­len­cia.

White: Carlsen. Black: Jakovenko. Open­ing: Queen’s Gam­bit De­clined. 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Be7 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Bf4 c6 6.Qc2 Bd6 7.Bxd6 Qxd6 8.e3 Ne7 9.Bd3 b6 10.Nf3 Ba6 11.0-0 Bxd3 12.Qxd3 Nd7 (ap­par­ently a new move) 13.e4! (a well-timed cen­tral ad­vance) 13 . . . 0-0 14.e5 Qe6 15.Rae1 Rfe8 16.Nh4 Ng6 17.Nxg6 Qxg6 18.Qd2 Nf8 19.f4 Qf5 (19f5 would block­ade the po­si­tion more ef­fec­tively) 20.Nd1 f6 21.Ne3 Qd7 22.Qd3 fxe5 23.dxe5 Ne6 24.f5 Nc5 25.Qd4 Ne4 (di­a­gram one) 26.Nxd5 (ac­cept­ing the pawn of­fer) 26 . . . Qxd5 (black shies away from the com­pli­ca­tions aris­ing from 26Nc5!? 27.f6) 27.Qxe4 Rad8 28.e6 Qxe4 29.Rxe4 Rd6 30.g4 Kf8 31.g5 Ke7 32.Kg2 Rd5 33.Kg3 Kd6 34.h4 c5 35.f6 (white’s pawn mass en­sures victory) 35gxf6 36.gxf6 Rd3+ 37.Kh2 Rd2+ 38.Kh1 1-0.

Hav­ing lost to his young ri­val in the sec­ond round, Topalov tries to turn the ta­bles in the sev­enth. White: Topalov. Black: Carlsen. Open­ing: Si­cil­ian De­fence. 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 Di­a­gram 1: Carlsen v Jakovenko be­fore 26.Nxd5 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.c3 e5 6.Ndb5 d6 7.Bg5 a6 8.Na3 b5 9.Bxf6 gxf6 10.Nd5 Bg7 11.Bd3 Ne7 12.Nxe7 Qxe7 13.O-O O-O 14.c4 f5 15.Qh5 (the play­ers are fol­low­ing the game Shi­rov v Carlsen, M-Tel Mas­ters 2009) 15 . . . Rb8 16.exf5 e4 17.Rae1 Bb7 18.Qg4 Rfe8 19.cxb5 d5 20.bxa6 Bc6 21.Rc1 (Shi­rov had played 21.b3) 21 . . . exd3 22.Rxc6 Qe2 23.h3 Rxb2 24.f6 Qxg4 25.hxg4 Rxa2 (both sides are play­ing quickly and con­fi­dently) 26.Nb1 Bf8 27.Rc3 Rxa6 28.Rxd3 Rxf6 29.Rxd5 (white stands slightly bet­ter) 29.Bb4 (pins down the white knight at b1) 30.g3 Re2 31.Kg2 Be1 (now white has to de­fend his f-pawn) 32.Rf5 Rxf5 33.gxf5 Bb4 34.Rc1 h5 35.Rc4 Rb2 36.Nc3 Bxc3 37.Rxc3 Rb5 38.Rf3 Kg7 39.Kh3 Kh6 40.Kh4 Rb1 41.Kh3 Rb5 42.Kh4 Rb1 43.Kh3 (white sees noth­ing bet­ter than ac­qui­esce to a rep­e­ti­tion of moves).

Fi­nal stand­ings: Carlsen 8, Topalov 5.5, Wang Yue (China) 4.5, Teimour Rad­jabov (Azer­bai­jan), Peter Leko (Hun­gary) and Jakovenko each 4.

Next year’s Syd­ney In­ter­na­tional Open and Chal­lengers tour­na­ment in Par­ra­matta will go ahead as planned. Fur­ther sup­port has been forth­com­ing from New Zealand grand­mas­ter Mur­ray Chan­dler, the NSW Chess As­so­ci­a­tion and oth­ers. More: www.ches­saus­ Last week’s so­lu­tions: (1) 1.g7 Bc5+ 2.Kg8 Bd4! 3.gxh8=N! (not 3.gxh8=Q?, when black wins with Bd5+) 3 . . . Bd5+ 4.Nf7+ Kg6 5.h8=N+! (again, black wins af­ter h8=Q? Bxf7+) and white draws. (2) Key 1.Qb7, threat 2.Qe7#. If 1 . . . Qf4 2.c7#, or 1 . . . f4 2. Nd6#, or 1 . . . Nf4 2.Re5#. Phil Viner

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