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Morelia-Linares Tournament

Viswanathan Anand8.5/14(+4 -1 =9)[games]
Magnus Carlsen8/14(+5 -3 =6)[games]
Levon Aronian7.5/14(+3 -2 =9)[games]
Veselin Topalov7.5/14(+5 -4 =5)[games]
Teimour Radjabov7/14(+2 -2 =10)[games]
Vasyl Ivanchuk6.5/14(+2 -3 =9)[games]
Peter Leko5.5/14(+2 -5 =7)[games]
Alexey Shirov5.5/14(+2 -5 =7)[games]
* Chess Event Description
Morelia-Linares (2008)

The 25th edition of the Linares tournament was held in two countries for the third and last time, with the first half in Morelia, Mexico (February) and the second half in Linares, Spain (February and March). The participants were: World Champion Viswanathan Anand (Elo ranked #1 in the world), Veselin Topalov (#3), Alexei Shirov (#7), Peter Leko (#8), Vassily Ivanchuk (#9), Levon Aronian (#10), Teimour Radjabov (#12), and Magnus Carlsen (#13). In Linares, the games were played in Teatro Cervantes, not in Hotel Anibal (as usual since 1988). Games started 3:30 pm in Morelia and 4 pm in Linares, local time. Anand won with 8.5/14.

Morelia, Mexico (15-23 Feb) and Linares, Spain (28 Feb - 7 March)

Age Elo 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 1 Anand 38 2799 ** 1½ 0½ ½½ ½½ ½½ 1½ 11 8½ 2 Carlsen 17 2733 0½ ** 1½ 11 0½ ½1 ½0 ½1 8 3 Aronian 25 2739 1½ 0½ ** 01 ½½ 1½ ½½ ½½ 7½ 4 Topalov 32 2780 ½½ 00 10 ** ½½ 1½ 11 01 7½ 5 Radjabov 20 2735 ½½ 1½ ½½ ½½ ** ½½ 0½ 01 7 6 Ivanchuk 38 2751 ½½ ½0 0½ 0½ ½½ ** 11 ½½ 6½ 7 Leko 28 2753 0½ ½1 ½½ 00 1½ 00 ** ½½ 5½ 8 Shirov 35 2755 00 ½0 ½½ 10 10 ½½ ½½ ** 5½

Category: XXI (2756). Arbiters: Juan Vargas and Faik Gasanov.

Official site: Carlsen vs Shirov video (Round 9):

The 3rd Morelia Open was played 14-17 February. It was won by Alejandro Ramirez Alvarez with 6.5/8. The 2nd Ibero-American Championship was played in Morelia and Linares 14 February - 8 March. It was won by Julio Ernesto Granda Zuniga.


ChessBase, 3/7/2008 (
ChessBase, 2/28/2008 (
ChessBase, 2/24/2008 (
FIDE rating list January 2008 (
Mark Crowther in TWIC 694 (
David Llada blog, 20 March 2008 (
Spanish ChessBase, 08/03/2008 (
Ian Rogers in Norsk Sjakkblad, 2/2008, pp. 12-16 (
Macauley Peterson in USCF website, 26 February 2008 (
Amador Rodriguez Cespedes in Peón de Rey, No. 74 (May-June 2008), pp. 7-20 (

Round dates: February 15, 16, 17, 19, 20, 22, 23 in Morelia; Feb 28, 29, March 1, 3, 4, 6, 7 in Linares (from ChessBase and and

Previous: Morelia-Linares (2007). Next: Linares (2009)

 page 1 of 3; games 1-25 of 56  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Carlsen vs Ivanchuk ½-½392008Morelia-LinaresB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
2. Shirov vs Anand 0-1302008Morelia-LinaresB96 Sicilian, Najdorf
3. Leko vs Radjabov 1-0372008Morelia-LinaresB33 Sicilian
4. Topalov vs Aronian 1-0372008Morelia-LinaresE21 Nimzo-Indian, Three Knights
5. Radjabov vs Topalov ½-½412008Morelia-LinaresC67 Ruy Lopez
6. Anand vs Aronian 0-1342008Morelia-LinaresC89 Ruy Lopez, Marshall
7. Ivanchuk vs Leko 1-0432008Morelia-LinaresC84 Ruy Lopez, Closed
8. Shirov vs Carlsen ½-½392008Morelia-LinaresB42 Sicilian, Kan
9. Leko vs Shirov ½-½372008Morelia-LinaresB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
10. Carlsen vs Anand 0-1592008Morelia-LinaresD44 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
11. Aronian vs Radjabov ½-½242008Morelia-LinaresE61 King's Indian
12. Topalov vs Ivanchuk 1-0462008Morelia-LinaresB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
13. Shirov vs Topalov 1-0632008Morelia-LinaresB33 Sicilian
14. Anand vs Radjabov ½-½222008Morelia-LinaresC63 Ruy Lopez, Schliemann Defense
15. Ivanchuk vs Aronian 0-1602008Morelia-LinaresC84 Ruy Lopez, Closed
16. Carlsen vs Leko ½-½412008Morelia-LinaresE32 Nimzo-Indian, Classical
17. Topalov vs Carlsen 0-1442008Morelia-LinaresB04 Alekhine's Defense, Modern
18. Aronian vs Shirov ½-½182008Morelia-LinaresA21 English
19. Leko vs Anand 0-1452008Morelia-LinaresB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
20. Radjabov vs Ivanchuk ½-½382008Morelia-LinaresB46 Sicilian, Taimanov Variation
21. Topalov vs Anand ½-½422008Morelia-LinaresE21 Nimzo-Indian, Three Knights
22. Aronian vs Leko ½-½502008Morelia-LinaresA33 English, Symmetrical
23. Radjabov vs Carlsen 1-0432008Morelia-LinaresC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
24. Ivanchuk vs Shirov ½-½272008Morelia-LinaresD43 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
25. Leko vs Topalov 0-1382008Morelia-LinaresB80 Sicilian, Scheveningen
 page 1 of 3; games 1-25 of 56  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 203 OF 203 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <Nakamura is a very strong player and he's getting stronger but most impressive is that he did it almost by himself. To my knowledge he didn't go to any special school, or recieve any chess training from strong GM's or seconds. He got to where he is because he's talented and works hard by himself.>

His stepfather, Sunil Weeramantry, is one of the leading chess coaches in the US.

Mar-11-08  rogge: Lol, I see a chain of arguments falling apart here :)
Mar-11-08  Cactus: <jimKing> We need better names for our top players than that! Drawjabov? Drawnik? It's so unoriginal! :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: Drawriginal.
Mar-11-08  veigaman: Apart from his talent, Nakamura has the willing and the ambitious to win games. He has won the last 4 tournament where he has taken place: Barcelona, corsica, las vegas and gilbraltar which it is great result.

I think Nakamura will be stronger than carlsen and karjakin but it is just a feeling, the time will say.

Mar-11-08  Strongest Force: Yogi1986, i've been telling people for a long time that most elite europeans whould development heart-trouble if they had to play in american swiss-tournaments all the time! :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  jessicafischerqueen: Good Morning.
Premium Chessgames Member
  jessicafischerqueen: Good Evening.


<Hikaru Nagasaki> is as powerful as <21 kilotons> of TNT.

However, he has un unflattering nickname: <Fat Man>.

An Englishwoman

Premium Chessgames Member
  jessicafischerqueen: Good Evening.


You may be pleased to hear that I forgot which thread you put your <Nakamura> comments-- and I mistakenly thought that <> had wiped out all the posts we made about him.

I imagined that <Nakamura> had read the posts and ocmplained to <> or something.


BTW, did you know that <Magnus Carlsen> reads his own thread here, and that he actually mentioned <slomarko> in an interview?

You probably knew that already.

Now <slomarko> is famous!!


Mar-12-08  frogbert: strongest force, it would be great if the day would come, when you started to base your "views" on chess in europe on _knowledge_ instead of guesswork.

the majority of tournaments in europe are swiss tournaments (or some variant of it), and the majority of swiss tournaments are weekend tournaments. do you think weekend tournaments in europe can be played without double rounds?

practically everyone has played a big number of weekend tournaments with relatively fast time controls and two or three rounds each day at some point in their career. carlsen has certainly played his share of those tournaments.

the net effect, though, of fast time controls and several rounds each day, is that <chess suffers> - its quality goes down. if a young player like nakamura takes that stress better than older players, it's no big surprise, really, but of course it influences nakamura's game as well.

do you think us swisses would've been even more impressive if all the players were fitted on threadmills and had to be running/jogging during their games as well? if us players had been used to that, then you can bet that elite players would've suffered if they were to enter a us weekend threadmill swiss.

<yoga, sf - your entire point about double rounds are misunderstood, in my opinion. nobody becomes a better chess player by having to play chess under worse conditions.>

all over europe weekend tournaments with double rounds are staged, since it's a practical way of getting to play tournaments without taking time off from work or needing to commit too many days to a tournament. but luckily, we can also choose to play swiss or round robins <without> double rounds, due to lots of serious organizers that offer such tournaments.

personally, i'm going to take 6 work days off in april, travel to a good hotel high up in the mountains, with all meals included (and very good meals as well, from own experience), play a 9 round swiss with one game a day, and generally have a good time. when not playing chess, i can relax in the pool, enjoy the excellent nearby skiing facilities or just go for a walk in the fresh mountain air. in summary, i can forget about everything else, and just concentrate on playing good and interesting games of chess. i'm just an amateur, but i know under which conditions i enjoy chess the most. :o)

so, stop being proud of the low number of regional/national tournaments with good conditions available to uscf members, whether they are strong or weaker.

Mar-12-08  znprdx: If I were a producer/promoter/sponsor I would introduce the following parallel scoring system so as to give a better picture of player performance and at least reduce non-engagement draws. If prizes are awarded accordingly, perhaps FIDE will review scoring

A win or draw for Black [4/2] while for White[3/1] with in turn a one-half point adjustment plus / minus for rating difference creates a fascinating result as in Moreila-Linares 2008

end[start] RDS 1-7 + RDS 8-14

1 [8] M Carlsen 12.5 + 16.5 = 29
2 [6] L Aronian 12 + 13 = 25
3 [1] V Anand 14 + 10.5 = 24.5
4 [7] T Radjabov 10 + 13.5 = 23.5
5 [5] V Ivanchuk 10 + 13 = 23
6 [2] V Topalov 12.5 + 10.5 = 23
7 [4] P Leko 7.5 + 9.5 = 17
8 [3] A Shirov 12 + 3 = 15

Mar-12-08  drnooo: There is a very simple system available to any tournament for, if not avoiding draws, determining a proper winner, either a two man match, or log jam at the top. The game is played by clocks. Total up who spent the less time on all his, her games in case of tie, and he is the winner. It makes much more sense than then playing some silly set of five minute games, since it is based on the actual overall performance of the slow classic games, who solved his problems the fastest.
Mar-12-08  drnooo: As for Nakamura not playing in Europe, if anyone were really interested a very simple system awaits him, that is if they really think he has the super talent that some here seem to feel: technology being what it is, he and Carlsen could easily play two and a half hour matches for money long distance, either by computer or just relaying the moves by telephone, an observer at each end. That is if he really would want a match and feel he would stand a chance against Carlsen or Radjabov.
Premium Chessgames Member
  jessicafischerqueen: Good Morning.

<Nakamura v. Carlsen/Radjabov>

No chance.
Absolutely no chance.

Mar-13-08  bestjetsfan: Do not forget that Nakamura crushed Karijakin when they played a match in Mexico. He also made it through three full rounds (maybe 4) in that huge world championship elimination tournament a year or two ago, finally losing only to Adams when he tried a speculative plan to win one game and the plan didn't work. And as I recall, Adams won that tournament. PS - Hikaru - if you happen to read this, I'm the one with the 4-3 lifetime record against you. :)
Mar-13-08  Marvol: <drnooo: There is a very simple system available to any tournament for, if not avoiding draws, determining a proper winner, either a two man match, or log jam at the top. The game is played by clocks. Total up who spent the less time on all his, her games in case of tie, and he is the winner.>

My first reaction: this surely punishes, and probably discourages, long fighting draws whilst encouraging short unfought ones.

Mar-13-08  Marvol: Marvol: <bestjetsfan: Do not forget that Nakamura crushed Karijakin when they played a match in Mexico.>

At the time Karjakin was about to turn 15 while Nakamura had just turned 17. Two years is a big age difference at these lower ages.

Nevertheless I'm not denying Nakamura is very talented. Talent isn't everything though.

Mar-13-08  Eyal: <[Nakamura] also made it through three full rounds (maybe 4) in that huge world championship elimination tournament a year or two ago, finally losing only to Adams>

That was Tripoli 2004 - Nakamura made it through 3 rounds out of 7, and the players that he beat were Sergey Volkov, Alexey Aleksandrov, and Alexander Lastin (btw, in a knockout format you always lose "only" to one player...).

In the 2005 World Cup, he was eliminated as early as the first round, losing to Surya Sekhar Ganguly.

And he didn't qualify at all to the 2007 World Cup (his rating wasn't high enough to qualify through ratings, and his results in the 2007 US Championship weren't good enough to qualify through a "zonal").

So considering Nakamura's overall record in this type of tournament - a good (though I wouldn't call it amazing) start, with nothing much to follow so far.

Mar-14-08  percyblakeney: In the Chesspro summary of Linares Ivanchuk surprised Vasiliev with being rather content, (“once upon a time you were content if you won it!”), but Ivanchuk thought he played fairly well. Danailov told him that he must play in the Real Madrid thing against Barcelona fan Leko, and Ivanchuk means that he really scored +2 in the tournament since the games he played in other clothes shouldn’t count (he lost all of them).

Vasiliev says that Ivanchuk could have scored better if he hadn’t gone wrong in two won positions, but Ivanchuk disagrees about having a won position against Carlsen. As with Tal they say that his moves are incorrect and so on, but somehow he wins anyway, Ivanchuk says.

Aronian means that he scored more points than he deserved, and that he made too many mistakes. He thinks that Carlsen’s weakness is his opening play.

Radjabov would have been content with +1 or +2 but not really with the even score he got, even though he did gain Elo points. Vasiliev wonders at his schedule, since he is playing non stop, and one day between Baku and Sofia doesn’t sound much, but Radjabov says that it is an interesting game so why not play as much as possible.

Mar-14-08  OneBadDog: <Cactus: <jimKing> We need better names for our top players than that! Drawjabov? Drawnik? It's so unoriginal! :)> Viswannadraw Anand?
Mar-14-08  Augalv: Drawpalov?
Mar-14-08  rogge: Topalov is not a drawmaster.
Mar-14-08  Petrosianic: On occasion he is.
Mar-18-08  frogbert: <So considering Nakamura's overall record in this type of tournament - a good (though I wouldn't call it amazing) start, with nothing much to follow so far.>

it surely doesn't come down to that much, when compared to for instance carlsen. ok, carlsen was knocked out in the tie-breaks (despite having a theoretically drawn rook ending in the rapid game he lost) in round one in tripoli - but he was playing up and coming aronian, a tough match for a 13 year old in 2004.

at 15 he went to the last 16, eventually placing 10th (as they played for places 1-16 that year), qualifying for the candidate matches. he won 5 matches and lost 2 (against bareev and kamsky, both in rapid tie-breaks). and aronian, which knocked out carlsen the year before, ended up winning in 2005.

in 2007, at 17, carlsen went to the semi-finals (6th round), where he lost to the eventual winner kamsky. he got there by beating quality players like adams, cheparinov and dominguez - all rated 2690+, with adams and cheparinov above 2700 at the time.

summing up, only kamsky and aronian have stopped carlsen from getting to a world championship final this far - aronian in the 2004 fide world championship and the 2007 fide candidate matches, and kamsky in the 2007 world cup semi-final. :o)

nakamura has done nothing in terms of fide individual championships (world cup, candidates, etc.) between 17 and now, being 20,5 years old.

and while he played a good match against karjakin in mexico, that match took place 3,5 years ago, when nakamura was rated 2620 and karjakin 2576. the 2005 "rematch" karjakin won 5-2, but that one was rapid. still, nakamura was rated 2657 and karjakin 2635 - and karjakin still won 5-2. i seldom hear americans mentioning that match. :o)

in the january list, karjakin was 2732 and nakamura 2670. while nakamura will be 2686 now and karjakin hasn't got any rated games in this rating period, there is still no doubt in my mind that karjakin is at least 50 points stronger than nakamura and would probably beat him quite clearly in any event they both participated in, be it a match or a round robin. :o)

Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: There were no Russian players in this tournament. When was the last time that a super-GM tournament did not feature a Russian player?
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