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Tata Steel 2022 - Round 1

The "Game of the Day" between Andrey Esipenko and Magnus Carlsen ended in a draw.

Carlsen and Esipenko
Photo credit Tatasteelchess

It's an improvement for Magnus, who last year in Wijk aan Zee lost to the young Russian.
Seriously, Magnus said after the game:

"You can't expect to beat Esipenko every other day: he's an extremely good player."

It looks like Magnus missed an excellent chance to get some advantage during his game, but he missed 17...d4.


The World Champion said, in an interview after e game:

"I was looking at it but couldn't quite make it work. I am not going to sit here and doubt the computer evaluations. If the computer says it was good, it probably was good. But it wasn't obvious to me."

Everyone is talking about Magnus and the 2900 barrier. In an interview with Norwegian TV, the champ said that it is his new goal, reiterating that he won't play another World Championship Match. Time will tell. Kramnik said he thinks Magnus will defend again his title next year.

Of course, it's not in a single tournament that Magnus can reach 2900. He should now win all the 12 remaining games, which appears an impossible feat. A Reddit user explained in detail what Magnus should do to reach the dream barrier, and it would take like 50 games, primarily because at the moment, there is only one player with a rating over 2800 (Alireza Firouzja).

Anyway, let's get back to Round 1.

Duda, Vidit, and Van Foreest lead the pack with one point, followed by Magnus, Fabi, Anish, Mamedyarov, Karjakin, Dubov, Esipenko, and the wunderkind Pragganandhaa.

At the bottom of the list, the three who lost their game today: Shankland, Rapport, and Grandelius.

Shankland tried to defend a lost endgame with tenacity, but Vidit, with great patience and despite not always playing the best moves, went on to win today's longest game.

Photo credit Tatasteelchess

Van Foreest started with a good win against Grandelius, and Duda defeated Richard Rapport.

Van Foreest
Photo credit Tatasteelchess

Three decisive games in a first-round day is an exciting start!

Tomorrow Round 2, again at 8 AM EST, 14:00 CET.