Pestaño: Magnus Carlsen is the greatest ever-A A +A
Friday, February 1, 2013
FOR the past 20 years or more, the consensus among chess players as to who the best player of all time is has been between Bobby Fischer and Garry Kasparov.
Now, that has all changed. Although Magnus Carlsen has not won the World championship yet, it is only a matter of time. Besides, he is only 22 years old and he has definitely not reached his peak.
All he has to do to claim immortality is to become world champion and reach a rating of 2900. That quest will begin soon, when the candidates tournament is held for the 2013 World Chess Championship. Given his recent results, he will be the odds-on favorite to win the event and challenge Viswanathan Anand.
Two of the strongest tournaments ever were the London Classic in December last year and the just concluded Tata Steel, both won by Carlsen.
In winning the London Classic 2012 for the third time, he broke the 13- year-old Elo rating record of Kasparov.
Here is the final standings in the London Classic (scored “football-style” with three points for a win and 1 for draw): 1.) Carlsen (18), 2.) Vladimir Kramnik (16) 3-4.
Michael Adams and Hikaru Nakamura (13) 5.) Anand (9), 6.) Levon Aronian ( 8), 7.)
Judit Polgar (6), 8.) Luke McShane (5) 9.) Gawain Jones (3).
Carlsen also clinched the victory in Tata Steel 2013 with a round to spare. His result matched the 1999 score put up by Kasparov as the best result ever.; Carlsen won seven games without a loss, with a performance rating of 2930, pushing his rating above 2870 for the first time.
The Tata Steel Chess Tournament has three main tournaments. They are played according to the “round robin” system, whereby each competitor plays in turn against every other during the tournament. All three Grandmaster groups have 14 players.
Since 1938, there has been a long list of famous winners in the A group, including (all world champions) Max Euwe, Tigran Petrosian, Boris Spassky, Mikhail Botvinnik, Mikhail Tal, Anatoly Karpov, Vladimir Kramnik, Kasparov and the current world champion Anand. In fact, of the “Classical” world chess champions since World War II, only the names of Vasily Smyslov and Bobby Fischer are missing. In 2001, nine of the top ten players in the world participated.
Anand is the only player to have won five titles in its long history ( this year is the 75th edition), though three of these were shared wins. Anand also holds the record of most consecutive games played at this tournament without a loss (70 from 1998–2004).
This year, the participants in the A group are (all GMs): Carlsen (2848), Aronian (2815), Caruana (2786), Anand (2775), Sergey (2775), Nakamura (2755), Wang (2737), Peter Leko (2732), Anish Giri (2715), Pentala Harikrishna (2692),Loek van Wely (2691), Ivan Sokolov (2677) Erwin L’Ami (2629), Yifan Hou (2606).
In winning the tournament, Carlsen gained 11 points while second placer Aronian and third placer Anand increased by seven. The biggest gainer was women’s champion Hou Yifan, with 25 after wins over Giri and Harikrishna. The losers were Caruana (-25), Sokolov (-22) and Wang(-9), despite winning over Anand in the last round.
Deep Blue. An Open tournament with a total prize of P22,000—with P7,000 gointo the champion—will be held by the Deep Blue Woodpushers Club at SM city tomorrow and Sunday.
Format is five-rounds Swiss and the top 16 will qualify for the knockout system. Knockout match will be two games (black and white) and in case of a tie, there will be sudden death.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on February 01, 2013.