Members · Prefs · Laboratory · Collections · Openings · Endgames · Sacrifices · History · Search Kibitzing · Kibitzer's Café · Chessforums · Tournament Index · Players · Kibitzing

Chessgames premium membership fee will increase to $39 per year effective June 15, 2023. Enroll Now!

Grand Slam Chess Final Tournament

Veselin Topalov17(+4 -1 =5)[games]
Magnus Carlsen13(+3 -3 =4)[games]
Levon Aronian13(+3 -3 =4)[games]
Vasyl Ivanchuk12(+2 -2 =6)[games]
Teimour Radjabov10(+1 -2 =7)[games]
Viswanathan Anand8(+0 -2 =8)[games] Chess Event Description
Grand Slam Chess Final (2008)

The 1st Grand Slam Chess Final was held in Bilbao, Spain 2-13 September 2008. Negotiations between the organisers of major tournaments M-Tel Masters, Corus and Linares began in 2006, seeking to create a cycle of tournaments to raise the popularity of chess and attract increased sponsorship for major events. The Grand Slam Chess Association (GSCA) was established on 17 January 2007, and the first edition of the series for 2008 announced in May, with Bilbao confirmed as Masters Final hosts. The tournament used the Sofia Chess Rules, which forbids agreed draws before 30 moves, and the "Bilbao" scoring system of 3 points for a win, 1 for a draw and 0 for a loss (though for ratings purposes the traditional scoring is used). (1) A soundproofed and air-conditioned glass 'cube' was constructed to house the tournament, allowing spectators to watch closely the players inside. (2) Crosstable:

01 02 03 04 05 06 1 Topalov ** 11 ½0 ½1 ½½ 1½ 6½ 17 2 Carlsen 00 ** 11 ½0 1½ ½½ 5 13 3 Aronian ½1 00 ** 1½ ½0 ½1 5 13 4 Ivanchuk ½0 ½1 0½ ** ½1 ½½ 5 12 5 Radjabov ½½ 0½ ½1 ½0 ** ½½ 4½ 10 6 Anand 0½ ½½ ½0 ½½ ½½ ** 4 8

Next edition: Grand Slam Chess Final (2009)

(1) Wikipedia article: Bilbao Chess Masters Final, (2) Wikipedia article: Bilbao Chess Masters Final#/media/File:Bilbao 2008 chess2.jpg

 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 30  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Aronian vs Carlsen 0-1512008Grand Slam Chess FinalA32 English, Symmetrical Variation
2. Radjabov vs Topalov ½-½492008Grand Slam Chess FinalC45 Scotch Game
3. Anand vs Ivanchuk ½-½582008Grand Slam Chess FinalC89 Ruy Lopez, Marshall
4. Ivanchuk vs Carlsen ½-½292008Grand Slam Chess FinalB78 Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack, 10.castle long
5. Topalov vs Aronian ½-½372008Grand Slam Chess FinalD12 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
6. Anand vs Radjabov ½-½342008Grand Slam Chess FinalB33 Sicilian
7. Aronian vs Anand ½-½422008Grand Slam Chess FinalD16 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
8. Radjabov vs Ivanchuk ½-½352008Grand Slam Chess FinalD20 Queen's Gambit Accepted
9. Carlsen vs Topalov 0-1562008Grand Slam Chess FinalD58 Queen's Gambit Declined, Tartakower (Makagonov-Bondarevsky) Syst
10. Topalov vs Anand 1-0252008Grand Slam Chess FinalE15 Queen's Indian
11. Carlsen vs Radjabov 1-0372008Grand Slam Chess FinalB78 Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack, 10.castle long
12. Aronian vs Ivanchuk 1-0702008Grand Slam Chess FinalD27 Queen's Gambit Accepted, Classical
13. Ivanchuk vs Topalov ½-½442008Grand Slam Chess FinalE34 Nimzo-Indian, Classical, Noa Variation
14. Anand vs Carlsen ½-½362008Grand Slam Chess FinalC63 Ruy Lopez, Schliemann Defense
15. Radjabov vs Aronian ½-½342008Grand Slam Chess FinalC45 Scotch Game
16. Topalov vs Radjabov ½-½732008Grand Slam Chess FinalE75 King's Indian, Averbakh, Main line
17. Carlsen vs Aronian 1-0362008Grand Slam Chess FinalD47 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
18. Ivanchuk vs Anand ½-½322008Grand Slam Chess FinalD18 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Dutch
19. Carlsen vs Ivanchuk 0-1322008Grand Slam Chess FinalD37 Queen's Gambit Declined
20. Radjabov vs Anand ½-½292008Grand Slam Chess FinalB46 Sicilian, Taimanov Variation
21. Aronian vs Topalov 1-0582008Grand Slam Chess FinalE36 Nimzo-Indian, Classical
22. Topalov vs Carlsen 1-0482008Grand Slam Chess FinalB78 Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack, 10.castle long
23. Anand vs Aronian 0-1752008Grand Slam Chess FinalC45 Scotch Game
24. Ivanchuk vs Radjabov 1-0492008Grand Slam Chess FinalB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
25. Anand vs Topalov ½-½412008Grand Slam Chess FinalB18 Caro-Kann, Classical
 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 30  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 106 OF 106 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Sep-14-08  madlydeeply: Aronian and Carlsen's achievements in posting an even score far outstripped Ivanchuk's posting of an even score, therefore Ivanchuk very much deserves his abysmal fourth place finish.

Great scoring system. I'm so impressed.

Sep-14-08  dexterious: I'm really disappointed in Anand. Its clear that his heart was not in it, and that he *only* came for the 30,000 Euro or whatever that he was guaranteed. I'd expect this kind of shameless behaviour from Kramnik, but not Anand. He basically slept through the tournament. Shame on you, Anand! You're already one of the richest chess players, this was not necessary.

Bilbao tournament organizers made a blunder as well by invitiing Anand. I wish it had been morozevich instead of Anand, would have been so much more exciting with that!

The only consolation is that Anand loses his number 1 spot in rankings cause of this... but that is small thing.

Sep-14-08  madlydeeply: I suppose the 3-1-0 scoring system results in a tiebreaker system wherein if there is a tie for first place, the player with less draws wins.

The longer games are nice though. I say go back to the normal scoring system, with the same time controls and draw options but with an increment.

I hope Anand gets it together in time to open up a can of whupass on Kramnik.

Sep-14-08  Confuse: Curiously Anand's bad play here (and I know I'm late on the topic) could serve two purposes...

1. Kramnik has no "Latest on Anand" material to study from.

2. Shows that perhaps Anand has been preparing for Kramnik so much that his play against other styles has diminished.


Maybe I'm overthinking his performance here : )

Sep-14-08  vkj: <dexterious> Strong words!

I respect your right to express your exasperation with Anand, however I believe you are being harsh on him.

I am as big a fan or Anand (and Carlsen, and Kramnik, and Topalov) as any and I am with you in feeling let down by his play. However his right choose his moves is not any less than my right to get entertained. His discretion (on and off the board) has taken him where he is in life and I am sure he knows what he is doing.

I think your perspective tends to be somewhat different when you are on the verge of a world championship match against a formidable opponent and also you are facing top notch competition at Bilbao where you came to shake some dirt off you.

Further I don't think you become immoral if organizer value you worth at least 30K Euro and you are unable to deliver your worth because of your circumstances. In an ideal world, perhaps we all should be 110% of what we are, but we don't live in an ideal world, sometimes we just have to pick where we want to spend our maximum energy.

It is a sincere compliment to Anand that we expect him to be held to a higher standard than the rest of us and a commonplace behavior is below him :)

Cheer up, I believe things will be better in Bonn match and if he wins, I am sure he will make amends in the other tournaments he plays.

Sep-14-08  wanabe2000: <madlydeeply> Curious on Chessbase traditional scoring shows the tiebreakers with Aronian second, Ivanchuk third and Carlsen fourth.
Sep-14-08  offtherook: <TrueBlue: those people that bash Danailov have to remember that he was the one who found Topalov and coached him. If it wasn't for Danailov, Topalov would be a nobody today.> Would that have been such a great loss?
Sep-14-08  kellmano: < offtherook: <TrueBlue: those people that bash Danailov have to remember that he was the one who found Topalov and coached him. If it wasn't for Danailov, Topalov would be a nobody today.> Would that have been such a great loss? >

I don't particularly like Danailov, but yes, that would've been a great loss. The guy's chess is amazing.

Sep-14-08  parmetd: it is always a sad day when the only guy who doesn't deserve to win does.
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: <Anand - basically slept through the tournament> I disagree. He took on the Marshall Gambit and the Sveshnikov as White, then played a Sicilian against Radjabov as Black. His games against Carlsen were great, both fighting draws. His two losses were when Topalov killed him early, then losing a long (but compelling) endgame to Aronian. No shame there.

How many times have we seen an elite player losing, only to "recover" with a short draw next round? OK, there were no short draws in this tournament, just like there were no easy opponents. I'm sure he would have liked to score better here, yet this was one of the strongest tournaments ever.

Credit Anand for choosing to promote the game. =)

Sep-14-08  frogbert: just a technicality:

anand wasn't <invited> to this event, he <qualified> to it, as did aronian and ivanchuk, by their wins in linares, corus and mtel.

the three players being <invited>, were carlsen, topalov and radjabov. originally, there were supposed to be 4 qualifiers and 2 invitees.

Sep-14-08  KamikazeAttack: <TrueBlue: those people that bash Danailov have to remember that he was the one who found Topalov and coached him. If it wasn't for Danailov, Topalov would be a nobody today.>

What a perverse way to think.

Sep-14-08  Whack8888: <Kamikaze Attack> I also thought that was a weird statement
Sep-14-08  baseballplayer: Anand recieved 30 000 Euros for finishing in last!
Sep-14-08  SetNoEscapeOn: <baseballplayer>

Even if he achieves nothing more in Bonn, his reward will be $750,000. USD, though.

Sep-15-08  Petrosianic: <Whack8888> <Kamikaze Attack> I also thought that was a weird statement>

It was actually a couple of weird statements in one. The idea that we whouldn't care if Danailov is a crook as long as he gave us Topalov. And also the idea that he did give us Topalov in the first place, and that Topalov would be a nobody without him. It's a pretty bad dig against Topalov's ability to say that nobody other than Danailov could have gotten any success out of him.

Sep-15-08  messachess: Hello--just checking in--have had no time to play over games lately. Congratulations Topa! (I Look forward to studying his last round win--who know when.)
Sep-16-08  azi: I see this game as an adventure in "recastling" or maybe called, The 0-0-0-0 Game!! White's 0-0-0, is redone on his 15th & 16th turns, to a more secure arrangement, with ka1 and rb1, albeit the second regal relocation is castled-by-hand. It also calls to my mind Nimzovich's advice to follow up 0-0-0 castling with kb1 - Carlen just takes the king another step.
Sep-16-08  Phoenix: Haha, I just had a weird dream that the tournament was still going on, and Anand lost another game.

This kind of tournament doesn't happen too often, and when it does, I guess it leaves quite a big impression :)

Sep-17-08  VaselineTopLove: I had bet some chips on either Anand, Aronian, or Carlsen winning this tournament. I hedged my bets in such a way (based on the odds) that either of these 3 winning would offset my losses on the other 2. But none of them won! :(

If only I had known that Bilbao was a Danailov organized event, I'd have bet all my chips on Topalov!

Jan-21-09  NakoSonorense: Topalov is a monster!
May-09-09  Andrijadj: There is a funny thing:
Moscow tournament is one of the qualifying events for Bilbao.Last year,the winner was not invited because it was Chucky,and Chucky had already won the MTel.

What will happen if Kramnik shows up in Moscow and win?Danailov will have to invite him:)

May-09-09  acirce: <Andrijadj> Moscow is part of Grand Slam? Anyway, so what? Kramnik was invited last year too, by wildcard (and willing to play, but it didn't fit his schedule).
May-10-09  Andrijadj: He was invited to Bilbao???
I didn't know that...
May-10-09  acirce: He talked about it in that interview that mostly got noted because people misunderstood him and thought he said Carlsen would be on Anand's team in Bonn.

He said he got the feeling that the organizers didn't really want him there, though.

Here is some sort of translation of the interview I'm talking about:

<- For your opponent Anand the tournament in Bilbao will be also preparatory. If you were invited would you go there?

- There was a strangr situation with the tournament in Bilbao. Some time ago the organizers phoned me and said that they wanted me to take part in it. They sais that they could hold the competition in September or December. They asked what period of time suited me most. My answer was – December. And literally after several days there was a report that the tournament will be held … in September. You can estimate it as you wish but I have the impression that I was intentionally asked about the date to choose the other so that I wouldn’t be able to play. The situation is a bit odd: they had better not asked me.>

Jump to page #    (enter # from 1 to 106)
search thread:   
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 106 OF 106 ·  Later Kibitzing>

NOTE: Create an account today to post replies and access other powerful features which are available only to registered users. Becoming a member is free, anonymous, and takes less than 1 minute! If you already have a username, then simply login login under your username now to join the discussion.

Please observe our posting guidelines:

  1. No obscene, racist, sexist, or profane language.
  2. No spamming, advertising, duplicate, or gibberish posts.
  3. No vitriolic or systematic personal attacks against other members.
  4. Nothing in violation of United States law.
  5. No cyberstalking or malicious posting of negative or private information (doxing/doxxing) of members.
  6. No trolling.
  7. The use of "sock puppet" accounts to circumvent disciplinary action taken by moderators, create a false impression of consensus or support, or stage conversations, is prohibited.
  8. Do not degrade Chessgames or any of it's staff/volunteers.

Please try to maintain a semblance of civility at all times.

Blow the Whistle

See something that violates our rules? Blow the whistle and inform a moderator.

NOTE: Please keep all discussion on-topic. This forum is for this specific tournament only. To discuss chess or this site in general, visit the Kibitzer's Café.

Messages posted by Chessgames members do not necessarily represent the views of, its employees, or sponsors.
All moderator actions taken are ultimately at the sole discretion of the administration.

Spot an error? Please suggest your correction and help us eliminate database mistakes!

Copyright 2001-2023, Chessgames Services LLC