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🏆 Tata Steel Masters (2019) Chess Event Description
The 2019 Tata Steel Masters was a 14-player round-robin, taking place from 12-27 January. For its 81st edition, the tournament boasted six Top 10 players, including World Champion Magnus Carlsen and former champions Vladimir Kramnik and Vishy Anand. As well as the traditional venue in Wijk aan Zee, the rounds 5 and 10 were played in Alkmaar (16 January) and in Leiden (23 January). The time control was 100 minutes for 40 moves, followed by 50 minutes for 20 moves, then 15 minutes for the rest of the game, wi ... [more]

Player: Magnus Carlsen

 page 1 of 1; 13 games  PGN Download 
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Ding Liren vs Carlsen ½-½322019Tata Steel MastersA05 Reti Opening
2. Carlsen vs I Nepomniachtchi ½-½322019Tata Steel MastersD70 Neo-Grunfeld Defense
3. V S Gujrathi vs Carlsen ½-½1312019Tata Steel MastersA00 Uncommon Opening
4. Carlsen vs Kramnik ½-½562019Tata Steel MastersC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
5. J van Foreest vs Carlsen 0-1332019Tata Steel MastersB33 Sicilian
6. Carlsen vs Mamedyarov 1-0512019Tata Steel MastersD27 Queen's Gambit Accepted, Classical
7. V Fedoseev vs Carlsen ½-½742019Tata Steel MastersD90 Grunfeld
8. Carlsen vs R Rapport 1-0402019Tata Steel MastersB47 Sicilian, Taimanov (Bastrikov) Variation
9. S Shankland vs Carlsen ½-½402019Tata Steel MastersD31 Queen's Gambit Declined
10. Carlsen vs Anand 1-0762019Tata Steel MastersC77 Ruy Lopez
11. Radjabov vs Carlsen ½-½252019Tata Steel MastersB33 Sicilian
12. Carlsen vs J K Duda 1-0712019Tata Steel MastersD37 Queen's Gambit Declined
13. A Giri vs Carlsen ½-½302019Tata Steel MastersB33 Sicilian
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Carlsen wins | Carlsen loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 15 OF 25 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jan-23-19  nok: <the easier it is to become WCC, the less prestigious it will be.>

So we put hurdles in the others' way so that the incumbent can repeat? That's fake prestige.

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: People seem to have different definitions of fairness. Does "memoryless" equate to "fair"?

For example, there are players who got the GM title a long time ago and now have lower ratings than some non-GM's. Does anyone think that is unfair? Should GM's be required to re-earn their norms every 10 years?

Jan-23-19  310metaltrader: Is there a reason that the score table is not correct?
Jan-23-19  nok: <there are players who got the GM title a long time ago and now have lower ratings than some non-GM's. Does anyone think that is unfair?>

If it prevented others from getting it, yes.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sargon: <310metaltrader: Is there a reason that the score table is not correct?>

Yes. There was an erroneous move in the PGN file for one of the games. Correcting it resulted in the proper crosstable computation.

<john barleycorn: if only CG could honour this event with a correct tournament standing.>

If only the PGN files we rely on from TWIC never contained errors. Garbage in, garbage out.

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <nok>
Can you list the players who you think could have been world champion if the rules had been more fair, in your opinion?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sokrates: Live ratings of top 15 after round 10 (Source:

1 Carlsen 2842.6 +7.6
2 Caruana 2828.0 0.0
3 Ding Liren 2814.4 +1.4
4 Mamedyarov 2800.3 -16.7
5 Giri 2792.8 +9.8
6 Anand 2780.3 +7.3
7 Vachier-Lagrave 2778.0 -2.0
8 Nepomniachtchi 2772.5 +9.5
9 Grischuk 2771.0 0.0
10 So 2768.0 +3.0
11 Aronian 2765.1 -1.9
12 Yu Yangyi 2755.9 -8.1
13 Radjabov 2754.7 -2.3
14 Karjakin 2753.0 0.0
15 Kramnik 2751.2 -25.8

Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: Standings table looks right now.

TWIC is very routine these days, and has errors. I suggested to Daniel to use the pgn's from chess24. His answer, see chessforum (kibitz #27734)

Jan-24-19  john barleycorn: <Sargon: ...

If only the PGN files we rely on from TWIC never contained errors. Garbage in, garbage out.>

A bad carpenter always blames his hammer, my grandmother used to say.

Good management makes things happen, not finding excuses.

Premium Chessgames Member
  mckmac: <John Barleycorn> Perhaps you might give the man a break. I would like to thank <Sargon> for managing to keep the show on the road.
Jan-24-19  fabelhaft: The way Kramnik is playing is just so strange. Now he was totally lost against Vidit a few moves after theory ended. His by far worst tournament result is -3 in Tal Memorial 2013, and that was in the at the time strongest field ever. Here he is -5 in a weaker field, but was also dead lost against Radjabov, was fortunate that Rapport didn't play the winning f5 instead of fxg5, and then Ding Liren uncharacteristically blundered into a draw just when Svidler and Gustafsson pronounced that he would win that game.

GM Yermolinsky meant that no one believes Kramnik's stating that he doesn't care about the result but only wants to have fun, even if part of the explanation has to be that Kramnik does care less about results than before. But it isn't much fun to just lose almost straight out of the opening against below 2700s, or make repeated mistakes like against Anand, who sounded embarrassed about the game.

And how exciting is it to play out that endgame against Rapport? A big Kramnik fan as Denis Monokroussos wrote "the last 30 were utterly pointless as Kramnik "tried" to win rook vs. knight. He wouldn't manage to defeat me in such an ending - it's a trivial task for the weaker side to hold - so his playing it out against Rapport was slightly insulting, or at least absurd. Maybe Kramnik had a fight with his wife and didn't want to resume the argument, or maybe he was thinking about variations for the press conference where his opponent survived by a "miracle". Whatever the case, playing out the ending for 30 moves was somewhere between pointless and dumb, especially since Rapport had tons of time on the clock"

Kramnik has played fun chess for a decade, but with very stable results, in spite of not winning any tournaments. The last time he won an event of any sort was 6 years ago, and that was a minimatch knockout where he didn't face anyone in the top 20. His last victory in a classical round robin was 8 years ago. But his overall results have been so stable that he was one game off being #1 on the live rating list as late as in the summer 2017.

He played great chess in the Candidates up until missing the win against Caruana. After that he seemed to lose all objectivity. In game after game he made mistakes, and in the post game interviews his assessments were off the mark. Mamedyarov wasn't the only opponent to be annoyed after Kramnik pronounced himself as having great winning chances in a lost position. Mamedyarov pointed out the refutation, upon which Kramnik proclaimed that maybe Mamedyarov could escape with a draw.

I don't recall any other ex-World Champion, recent Candidates favourite (only ten months ago all betting sites had him with lower odds than Caruana!) and #1 live rating challenger playing like this. Maybe he is having fun, but it doesn't look much fun.

Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: <john barleycorn:...A bad carpenter always blames his hammer, my grandmother used to say. Good management makes things happen, not finding excuses> And non-premium members that complain all the time are little more than dead weight around here. Oh my boy, where I work, complaints must be accompanied by solutions. Tell that to your grandmother
Jan-24-19  JimNorCal: As <Tabanus> says above the score table looks good now. Thanks!
Jan-24-19  frogbert: <Oh my boy, where I work, complaints must be accompanied by solutions.>

The solution here is pretty straightforward: simply check that everything looks alright after uploading the pgn-file. If it's supposed to contain complete results after 10 rounds, then every player should be listed with 10 games each.

An even better solution is to write a little script that parses the pgn and outputs it in a format that one knows will work correctly. If there are errors in the file that one cannot automatically fix, it needs manual intervention.

The latter isn't hard to do - due to all tools already out there, I wouldn't spend more than a couple hours to make a script that made sure that for instance a round robin with x players after n rounds contained x/2*n complete and correctly validated games.

Of course, there are other scenarios too, but this is by far the most common for high-profile events. Also, as a programmer I know very well that any system I work on can't trust input data on face value; they must be validated and sometimes cleaned up.

Jan-24-19  Chessinfinite: Good games today. So many wins.

Grinding against an 'old' man of 50 must feel good for the WC :), but seriously it was a good win, in the sense that Anand got the endgame idea right, and almost held the game only to blunder at the last min. Credit to Carlsen for keep pushing till the end, alas Anand could not maintain his 'correct' idea to the end. It reminded me of the game 8 against Topalov in Sofia which also ended in an exciting loss.

Shocked to see another WC Kramnik in his worst form in years, who seemed to not care about the danger anymore in his last few games..

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: ***

Hi AylerKupp,

You have to award the Champion something for being the Champion. A path into the candidates is the obvious choice.

That way we get too watch round after round the crown slipping ever so slowly off his head like a sad melting snowman welcoming in Spring.

The fan boys will hide, the haters will gloat, the 'told you so's' will say 'I told you so.'

The neutrals will declare how sorry they are to see a champ go out this way and then apologise for posting.

Those lacking in basics maths will declare the Champ still has a chance because C.G. will invariably have the tournament table all skew-wiff.

The armchair chess psychiatrists bored with analysing Fischer will gather like C.S.I. agents around a warm corpse each one putting forward a thesis as to why it happened.

AylerKupp, do not deny us this feast of the Baboons.


Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: Are these slugs taking ANOTHER day off?
Jan-24-19  starry2013: I guess they might be moving venues, but it's certainly a contrast to Gibraltar which has no rest days.
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: They don't monkey around, in Gibraltar. If the Karpov/Kasparov matches had one rest day per week why do these people need two? Playing Foreest or the Dude is not the same pressure as playing a Super K.
Jan-24-19  LameJokes: Three rest days in 13 rounds works out to 4.33 round per rest day. Which is reasonable.

Players start out fresh. So they play 5 rounds. Two more games and second rest day after 7th. Three more games and third rest day after 10th. That leaves final 3 rounds.

Only improvement can be first rest day after the 4th.

Apparently rest days are planned with venue change in mind, which occur twice. We need to take that into account,too.

Jan-24-19  LameJokes: These days, Kramnik plays off beat openings. Idea is to avoid analysed lines.

He takes some risks to create decisive games.

When positions are equal, he doesn't accept early draws. He plays the position out till all resources are exhausted.

This is refreshing approach. Kramnik needs to be commended for entertaining the audience.

Cautious players sometimes tend to get too passive.

Same way, ambitious players could get too adventures.

The only thing he could curb is the tendency to take excessive risks.

Jan-24-19  john barleycorn: < morfishine: ... Oh my boy, where I work, complaints must be accompanied by solutions. Tell that to your grandmother>

I told her. She said that <morfishine> is the triple "M" <most mental misfit> of CG. He can't even read let alone understand.

Anyway, <sargon> was complaining not receiving the pgn files the way he needs to process them. His <garbage in, garbage out> means to say no less, that he is unaware (not really), or does not care (well, well) or is unable/unwilling to fix it. Thus <sargon> is not very customer oriented. Members and especially "premium members" like the one and only <morfishine> are expected to "live" with what <sargon> presents to them.

For long a time when looking at <sargon>'s way of arguing, I have a feeling that he must be a twinbrother of <al wazir>.

Jan-24-19  pajaste: Anish Giri with black is 4:1!
Jan-24-19  BOSTER: Playing chess you have not only understand and feel the pos, you have enjoy, to get pleasure from game. I don't think that Carlsen enjoyed playing drawish ending vs Anand.
Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: Of course fair is relative. But just because someone had to overcome an unfair disadvantage at an earlier point in time doesn't mean that they are entitled to the same advantage just become they were able to overcome it once.

<The proposed solution would sure increase everyone's odds of becoming a WC.>

Is that a bad thing?

<If MC ended this Wijk 1/2 a point behind say Nepo and Giri, I would find that weak proof of the superiority of Nepo/Giri for the title match.>

True. And I would consider it no proof at all. But they would have a greater claim to superiority <in this tournament> that Carlsen would have if that scenario were to occur. Remember that the only thing that the winner(s) of an event prove is that they were superior at the time the event was held. That's all that the top two finishers in the Candidates Tournament would prove. When the actual match is held some time later one of the two could defeat the other one convincingly. All that would again prove is that the winner was the superior player at the time the match was held. Nothing more.

<Rating lists would probably be superior, but then why even bother playing the match?>

The players with the highest ratings are the better players over a long period of time. But players' performance are not consistent (see Kramnik's performance in this tournament as an example, regardless of the reason for it). That's why upsets in any event are possible. So the outcome of a match for the WCC cannot be predicted with certainty, so the element of suspense for the match attracts attention and increases interest in the game, if only temporarily.

<It would be anti-climactic to end championships with a bad tournament. ... Perhaps in the end I feel the duel is essential in chess and Kings should go out with a duel. >

Agreed, that's why I suggested that the top two finishers in the Candidates Tournament meet in a match to determine which of the two should have the title.

<The proposal is too much like having a prime minister and everyone getting their turn to be one.>

I think that everyone should have a <chance> to become prime minister, but they still have to <earn> the privilege. Or do you think that some people's privilege to become a prime minister should be restricted a priori so that they don't have a chance?

<Besides, the easier it is to become WCC, the less prestigious it will be.>

Do you then think that the easier it is to <remain> a WCC the more prestigious it would be?

Listen, I'm not hung up on "my" suggestion. Like I said before, it's not original. But just because it's not original it doesn't mean that it doesn't have merit. And, if you disagree, that's fine too.

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