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Carlsen achieves the triple crown for the 3rd time


The Norwegian is champion of the classic, fast and lightning modalities, but he will not defend the 1st for fear of defeat

He needed it more than ever to make it clear that he is still the best, even if he gave up the title in the classic mode because he can't stand the possibility of defeat.

Magnus Carlsen has won the Rapid and Blitz World Championships in Almaty (Kazakhstan) in 72 hours in both cases, winning by obligation in the last round.

His triple reign should only last four months because the Russian Ian Niepomniashi and the Chinese Liren Ding are scheduled to play the duel in April to succeed the Norwegian on the throne of slow games.

“If I have to choose, I think the Blitz Championship is the most deserving and because there are more rounds [21] and therefore it is even tougher than the Rapid [13].

As for the slow games, well, I have won it five times, but it is not so appreciated by me because I have given it up, "the triple champion explained to the journalists.

“Only someone who has been in this demanding situation can understand how tough this tournament is.

It is even for me, despite having played it several times, ”he stressed.

Carlsen's dominance in these two accelerated World Cups has not been overwhelming, far from it.

But, apart from his immense talent, encyclopedic memory, very deep understanding of strategy and great calculation skills, it is in the determination to win by any means necessary that the Scandinavian clearly surpasses his rivals.

That quality is what usually distinguishes the great champions in many sports.

Carlsen began the Lightning World Championship this Thursday -after claiming the Rapid crown on Wednesday- with a significant anecdote about his character and also about his enormous sporting power.

Probably because his father and his manager, Henrik, was ill and could not control that everything was in order, Magnus left the hotel late and found himself stuck in a traffic jam.

In deference to him, the organizers delayed the start of the 1st round by five minutes so that the authorities could do the honor roll on his board, until they decided to do it on American Hikaru Nakamura's.

But even so, the Norwegian was close to losing it on time: he arrived at his table in a hurry, with only seconds left (blitz games start with three minutes for each player, who then receives an additional two seconds after each move), dressed with the upper part of a tracksuit and a star pants typical of pajamas.

These haste did not prevent him from beating the Belarusian Vladislav Koválev without much effort and giving him time to change his clothes before the 2nd round.

Although he had 6.5 points in the first seven games, Carlsen then signed five straight draws to close out the day;

one of them against Nakamura, who had a point when they went to the hotel after twelve rounds.

Thursday's session (nine more rounds) began in a very different way, demonstrating that the big difference -especially in the fast modalities- between Carlsen and Nakamura is not the size of their talent, enormous in both cases, but the attitude.

While Nakamura signed two consecutive draws without a fight against the Romanian Richard Rapport and Niepómniashi, the Scandinavian risked a lot, playing much slower than usual, to beat first the Armenian Haik Martyrosián and then Rapport in a crazy game where he rallied from a losing position.

But Carlsen lost the next one, against Niepómniashi.

And, after three straight victories, he fell again, to another Russian, Alexei Sarana, which practically forced him to win the last two to achieve gold without having to resort to the dramatic

sudden death tiebreaker.

And he did it, consecutively knocking down the Russian Alexander Shimanov and the prodigious Uzbek Nodirbek Abdusattorov, 18, world rapid champion in 2021. When the latter shook his hand in surrender, Carlsen forgot his usual coldness and raised both hands in sign of triumph: he had achieved his great goal of being triple king for the 3rd time (as in 2014 and 2019), although this time it will only be for four months.

Assaubáyeva, world blitz champion for the 2nd consecutive year Lennart Ootes

The other great sensation of the day was the Kazakh Bibisara Assaubáyeva, 18 years old, world champion for the second consecutive year.

Iranian Sarasadat Jademalsharieh, 25, who has played both World Cups without a headscarf in protest against her government, battled for the top spots until she collapsed in the final rounds.

Final classifications:

1st Carlsen 16 points;

2nd-3rd Nakamura and Martyrosián 15;

4th-7th Giri (Netherlands), Duda (Poland), Dúbov (Russia) and Sarana 14.5;

8th-9th Fedoseyev (Russia) and Rapport 14;

10th-14th Artémiev (Russia), Andreikin (Russia), Niepómniashi, Keymer (Germany) and Salem (United Arab Emirates) 13.5;

28º Antón (Spain) 12.5;

47th Niemann (USA);

73rd Alvar Alonso (Spain) 11;

78º Vallejo (Spain) 11;

176 participants.

1st Assaubáyeva 13;

2nd Koneru (India) 12.5;

3rd-4th Shuvalova (Russia) and Tan (China) 12;

5th Arabidze (Georgia) 11.5;

99 participants.

The complete lists are here.

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by Leontxo García

Source: elparis

All news articles on 2022-12-30

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