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GCT Paris Rapid & Blitz Tournament

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave14.5/27(+11 -9 =7)[games]
Viswanathan Anand15.5/27(+9 -5 =13)[games]
Alexander Grischuk14/27(+8 -7 =12)[games]
Ian Nepomniachtchi15/27(+10 -7 =10)[games]
Jan-Krzysztof Duda15/27(+11 -8 =8)[games]
Fabiano Caruana14.5/27(+12 -10 =5)[games]
Hikaru Nakamura14.5/27(+10 -8 =9)[games]
Shakhriyar Mamedyarov11.5/27(+8 -12 =7)[games]
Daniil Dubov10.5/27(+5 -11 =11)[games]
Anish Giri10/27(+5 -12 =10)[games]
* Chess Event Description
GCT Paris Rapid & Blitz (2019)

The Paris Rapid & Blitz was the third stage of the 2019 Grand Chess Tour, a series of eight events in which the world's best players competed for a total prize fund of $1.75 million. The Paris event this year took place in the Head Office of sponsors Vivendi from July 27 to August 1. Seven of the 12 tour regulars, Caruana, Giri, MVL, Nepomniachtchi, Mamedyarov, Anand and Nakamura were joined by event wild cards Grischuk, Duda and Dubov. The rapid part was a 10-player round-robin and featured three rounds each day on the first three days, with a time control of 25 minutes for all moves and a 10-second delay from move 1. The final two days were a blitz double round-robin, with 18 rounds of 5 minutes + 3-second delay. Rapid games counted double, with 2 points for a win and 1 for a draw.

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave won with 21/36 and collected 13 Grand Chess Tour points (GP):

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 Pts GP 1 Vachier-Lagrave *** 11 10 00 200 210 101 21 211 200 21 13 2 Anand 10 *** 11 21 11 111 11 00 100 21 20 10 =3 Grischuk 11 10 *** 21 000 20 201 10 2 11 20 7 =3 Nepomniachtchi 21 00 00 *** 20 211 2 001 11 11 20 7 5 Duda 011 10 211 01 *** 001 10 21 10 201 19 6 6 Caruana 001 100 01 000 210 *** 210 211 111 11 19 5 7 Nakamura 110 10 010 0 11 001 *** 210 211 11 18 4 8 Mamedyarov 00 21 11 210 00 000 001 *** 0 201 15 3 9 Dubov 000 111 0 10 11 100 000 2 *** 110 14 2 10 Giri 011 00 10 10 010 10 10 010 101 *** 12 1

Official site:

Previous GCT event: GCT Croatia (2019). Next: GCT St. Louis Rapid & Blitz (2019)

 page 1 of 6; games 1-25 of 135  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Grischuk vs Nakamura  1-0562019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzE06 Catalan, Closed, 5.Nf3
2. J K Duda vs Grischuk 1-0282019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzA09 Reti Opening
3. D Dubov vs A Giri  ½-½462019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzE10 Queen's Pawn Game
4. Nakamura vs Mamedyarov  1-0602019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzA04 Reti Opening
5. Anand vs Caruana  ½-½522019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzB52 Sicilian, Canal-Sokolsky (Rossolimo) Attack
6. M Vachier-Lagrave vs I Nepomniachtchi 0-1352019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzB12 Caro-Kann Defense
7. A Giri vs Anand 0-1632019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzE11 Bogo-Indian Defense
8. Caruana vs J K Duda 1-0452019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzC42 Petrov Defense
9. Nakamura vs Caruana  0-1372019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzE47 Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3 O-O 5.Bd3
10. D Dubov vs M Vachier-Lagrave  0-1622019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzA33 English, Symmetrical
11. Anand vs I Nepomniachtchi 1-0392019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzB91 Sicilian, Najdorf, Zagreb (Fianchetto) Variation
12. Grischuk vs Mamedyarov  ½-½252019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzA04 Reti Opening
13. J K Duda vs A Giri 1-0542019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzC50 Giuoco Piano
14. Mamedyarov vs M Vachier-Lagrave  0-1412019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzE60 King's Indian Defense
15. I Nepomniachtchi vs D Dubov  ½-½392019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzA33 English, Symmetrical
16. J K Duda vs Mamedyarov 1-0332019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzA13 English
17. I Nepomniachtchi vs A Giri  ½-½322019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
18. Grischuk vs M Vachier-Lagrave  ½-½392019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzE61 King's Indian
19. Caruana vs I Nepomniachtchi 0-1632019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzB07 Pirc
20. J K Duda vs Anand  ½-½362019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzA13 English
21. Mamedyarov vs A Giri  1-0432019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzA45 Queen's Pawn Game
22. Nakamura vs D Dubov  1-0412019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzD33 Queen's Gambit Declined, Tarrasch
23. Anand vs Nakamura  ½-½192019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
24. D Dubov vs Grischuk  0-1762019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzA06 Reti Opening
25. Grischuk vs Anand  ½-½492019GCT Paris Rapid & BlitzE10 Queen's Pawn Game
 page 1 of 6; games 1-25 of 135  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Pedro Fernandez: No doubt that the great "winner" of this tournament was GM Jan-Krzysztof Duda, 21yo!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sokrates: <Pedro Fernandez: No doubt that the great "winner" of this tournament was GM Jan-Krzysztof Duda, 21yo!>

My dear Pedro, dare I ask why so? Because he is 21? Both Tal and Carlsen were around 23, when they became world champions. Because of his result? Being no. 5 of 10? Was it his play? He lost 8 games (if I count correctly). Or you simply find the man sympathetic - I'd acknowledge that without any explanation! :-)

The winner without quotation marks is, of course, MVL, and I congratulate him on this victory, particularly because it may give him a boost of self-confidence, enabling him to get into the candidates and rise to his former glory there.

The winner with q.marks is IMO Vishwanathan Anand, who at 49 managed to become the clear second, only half a point behind the winner and in the company of such strong players in the quicker formats. He also had relatively few losses. Very remarkable, I'd say!

Premium Chessgames Member
  jith1207: MVL needs to get back the form he was in the last world cup. Since then, it has been up and down, but I guess it is how it goes among the elite except for Carlsen. MVL is very sharp, and hopefully few better performance like this could boost him in time for qualifying for the candidates.
Premium Chessgames Member
  jith1207: Maybe, because Duda beat Grischuk thrice, MVL twice, Caruana and Nepo once each. But his consistency was not there and must have been good experience playing in the grand chess tour nevertheless.
Premium Chessgames Member
  jith1207: Maybe, going by the original point system for all formats, Duda finishes joint second along with Grischuk behind Anand, as in the points table above.
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: <How long was Korchnoi in elite curcuit? I think somewhere until early 1990ies. That means into his 60ies. I think Anand can probably do the same.>

Depends on the definition of "elite".

He was 58 at his last top 10 appearance and 68 at his last top 20 one. Interestingly, in between the two he even fell out of top 50 (his lowest ranking between the two lists in question was 73, just two years after his last top 10 appearance).

Premium Chessgames Member
  jith1207: Top 20 in the world at the age of 68 still sounds elite to me, you can't expect someone to keep up the rankings at a senior age, but if they had bounced back to the top level again that's impressive.

There are many legends who reached the top but retired not willing to show their longevity, but they are also elite because they achieved something unique and great in their playing says.

Just like how you don't take away the Title norms, you don't over analyze the eliteness of the great players.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sokrates: While we recall the greatness of magnificent players who remained very strong almost until their death (Lasker, Smyslov and Korchnoi being the most prominent), let it be noted that they were rare exceptions. Let us hope Anand will join this distinguished club, but we shall have to wait until he has reached his 60s in order to make a proper comparison.
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: Smyslov's last appearance in the top 10 was even at a later age than Korchnoi's at 63. But he declined quicker afterwards (last top 20 at 64, last top 100 at 69)
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: Najdorf is for some reason rarely mentioned in this club. He left the absolute top early relative to the above mentioned (last top 20 at 60), but he stayed in the top 100 till 74 - only Korchnoi did longer (and unlike Korchnoi, he never disappeared from the top 100 before his last appearance there)!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sokrates: You're right, <alexmagnus>. Najdorf was in many ways a phenomenon in chess. Didn't he own the world record in blindfold simul for quite a while? But the three I mentioned, weren't all, of course. I dare say Botvinnik was a tough nut to crack right until the end of his activities. To think, he had played the great pre-WW2 (Lasker/Capa/Alekhine) and been a tutor to Kasparov. What a span of lifetime in chess!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Pedro Fernandez: Hey <Sokrates>, now I'm afraid I confused you about Duda, sorry. Note that I did put "winner" between quotes traying to indicate the performance he got in this top group players. IMO Duda was a <VIRTUAL> winner due his short experience in these-Rapid/Blitz magisterial tournaments, and his result was really good, without prejudice of the excellent performance, say, MVL, Anand got. I must clarify that when I mention his short age is not because his young mind capacity but because his lack of experience. Greetings my great friend.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sokrates: Okay, <Pedro>, I get your reasoning. Duda was up against an experienced lot, for sure, and he did well. Cheers to you, my friend.
Premium Chessgames Member
  moronovich: Hi <Sokrates> !

I had the privelledge to play the dane Gemzoe on 3 occasions.Did you know he had 2 wins and one draw against Lasker,Capablanca and Alekhine in simultanios games ? I dont know who got away with the draw ;)

Probably some kind of world record !?

Aug-02-19  frogbert: <Maxime Vachier-Lagrave won with 21/27>

Huh? 21 out of 36 is correct. 18 points up for grabs in the rapid part, 18 points up for grabs in the blitz part.

Aug-02-19  botvinnik64: A shoutout to all the recent post-ers: you all might love the half hour video (YouTube) Chess: A State of Mind. The footage alone is astonishing. Everyone watch and lets talk, its great stuff!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sokrates: Hello, <moronovich>, how are you doin'? Been on vacation?

You mean former Danish champion Jacob Erhardt Vilhelm Gemze? Astonishing! He must have been very old and you very young? And yeah, his result against the great three is very impressive. I only participated in simuls twice - it was in my young days. I managed to get a draw against both Larsen, it was in the mid 60s, and against old Salo Flohr in the late 70s. But I didn't fancy the genre - you play under par in the stressing set-up, IMO.

Aug-03-19  csmath: I don't think there is many that can be happy with Paris performance. Perhaps Anand who was more stable than the rest though he also had his "moments" and Duda who proved to be able to compete here.

MVL came as the worlds "best blitz player" only to completely falter in blitz with -2. That is to squash any talk about his supreme blitz abilities. Grischuk went down in blitz as well, Shak underperformed in both blitz and rapid, Giri was cut down to size but that did not stop him to twit/blabber/boast how he beat MVL in blitz, Dubov put a question mark on his tournament invitations saved from the last spot only by Giri's bankruptcy, Nakamura lost bearing the second day in blitz, Nepo rode a rollacoaster of wins and losses (as usual), Caruana certainly did not look like a WC challenger in rapid part.

Aug-03-19  jphamlore: Nakamura seems to be playing Alireza Firouzja quite a bit in online blitz matches. Nakamura is, I am sure completely by accident, becoming almost a substitute trainer for Firouzja, who may be the next triple-threat 2800+ at all three of classical, rapid, and blitz time controls in face-to-face play.
Aug-03-19  Atking: Afer his deceptive final at Riga spoiling a wonderful cup by an armagedon game just 3 days before Grand Ches Tour began in Paris I was afraid the French man does not play his best (Indeed he wasn't in Blitz part.) but he won it Congratulations!!
Premium Chessgames Member
  moronovich: Hello <Sokrates> !

Thank you,I am doing fine and enjoying the small trips in the local landscape with my wife,looking more beatifull than ever and at least more to my taste,than looking at a bunch of selfieaddicted tourists.Luckily I have visited so many countries and cultures when I was younger. And speaking of age.Gemzoe being around
80 and I 29-33 when we met.Even in his high age he played on a decent masterlevel which was quite impressive. He also made one of the most spectacular moves even seen,as during a rapid game,he was close to being in complete zugzwang,he lifted his rook on c4,made some hieroglyfian patterns and circles in the air for around 30-seconds.Wereupon he put his rook back to c4 ! A splendid solution and the game continued as if nothing has happened.Which actually was the case :) We all (many owls) laughed in a good way.
Distraugth as he ever was.And probably one of the best Danish talents ever.

And hey ,you drew the great Bent. Kudos!
Could imagine it was a boost to your game
and further endevaours on the 64 squares !?..
Same here about simuls.But I liked to give some myself.To my taste a nice mixture of fun and fight.

And how about your summer and vacation ? As far as I remember you took off for some weeks ago.

All the best fellow danese.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sokrates: Greeting, <moronovic>,

A quick rectification, if I wasn't clear. Both draws (BL and Flohr) were in simuls, hence Gemze's games with the great 3.

What a wonderful, hilarious story about Gemze. Impressive how good he was at such a high age. As for my own merits, they are, alas, restricted to very few years long time ago. I have moved a lot, been married a lot (!), been occupied with education and work a lot, so my best result would be city master in Haderslev, I think it was in 1969, 1 p. ahead of next (Kai Bjrnskov, H.W.May and the likes if those names tell you anything). Thereafter I left the city and practical chess was only played sporadically. Blitz-master of Zealand outside Copenhagen may count.

Yeah, we were in Vienna 9 days. Vienna is one of our favourite vac. targets (among Munich, Rome, Lisbon, Rotterdam, Dresden). Being retired with a working wife (!) vacations are adjusted to her dispositions. :-) But next year we've decided to enjoy this nice country of ours.

Take care, my friend.

Premium Chessgames Member
  moronovich: Thank you for your story <Sokrates> !

And yes,your merits definately counts.
Blitz master of Zealand doesnt come out of the blue air.

I am also happily married for 25 years after having aquinted a lot of woman,so perhaps I recognize your story !? "One must run the field before one can play the game,as the English say" ;)

Ill try to take care and the same to you friend.

Premium Chessgames Member
  moronovich: Oh,and forgot to tell that Vienna is very high up on my bucket list.

Did you know that Vienna comes from "vine" as it started out as a vine storage room/"houses" for roman soldiers !?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sokrates: <moronovich>. You're very kind on my merits, thanks, especially since you are a much stronger player than me.

Oh, silver wedding, huge congrats! I should be lucky if I succeeded. On my 4th marriage, 15 years now. When people ask about the other 3, I usually say, the first was stupidity, the second romanticism, the third sexual passion and the fourth, pure love. So, I dare say, I've run the field! :-)

I knew about "Wien", actually. I'm a sucker for knowing such things. It's incredible how huge the impact the Romans had on Europe. Ruins can be seen in Vienna and in many other central European cities. Even on our island Bornholm, ancient Roman coins have been found.

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