Recap Article

2021 Sinquefield Cup – Day 2 Recap

Wesley So was the sole winner of Day 2, after managing to trick Dariusz Swiercz in a difficult rook endgame to earn the full point as Black. Meanwhile, co-leaders Lenier Dominguez and Fabiano Caruana drew a complicated game, while Maxime Vachier-Lagrave held against Richard Rapport to maintain the lead with 1.5/2.

Swiercz – So | 0-1, 45 moves

Despite being well prepared against So’s Berlin Defense, Swiercz burned lots of time in the well-known ‘Berlin endgame’, and was unable to fight for any tangible advantage. Instead, he fell under pressure in an equal rook endgame and soon had to defend a worse position while also in heavy time trouble. Facing a difficult decision to go into a king and pawn endgame with just two minutes left on the clock, Swiercz chose wrong, missing the precise path to hold the endgame. Instead he opted to keep the rooks on the board but was simply lost, as So promptly converted his extra pawn into a victory.

Svidler – Mamedyarov | ½-½, 46 moves

Svidler fell into trouble early on, as he walked into an unfamiliar line of the Italian Game and soon lost a pawn out of the opening. Mamedyarov managed to trade down into a rook ending, but accurate defense from Svidler allowed him to save the endgame without too much difficulty.

Rapport – Vachier-Lagrave | ½-½, 36 moves 

A symmetrical English saw the players reach a balanced position in the middlegame, with Rapport having a bit of a space advantage while MVL secured a nice outpost on d4 for his knight. With neither player able to do much in the position, a repetition was found and the game was drawn shortly before the first time control.

Dominguez – Caruana | ½-½, 51 moves

In what was an interesting struggle Caruana sacrificed a pawn in a topical line of the Italian, looking for long-term compensation in the form of active pieces aimed at White’s kingside. Dominguez played well to neutralize Black’s initiative, but ultimately wasn’t able to find the most incisive route to keep his advantage. Instead Caruana earned enough activity to force White to give back the pawn, and the players soon simplified into a drawn queen and pawn endgame.

Shankland – Xiong | ½-½, 63 moves

The longest game of the day saw an incredibly sharp opening as Shankland castled queenside in a Maroczy Bind and seemed to achieve a large advantage. However Xiong was able to create serious counterplay on the queenside, soon forcing Shankland to trade down into an equal endgame. Despite pushing for several hours, Shankland was unable to generate any real winning chances, and the players eventually traded everything down to bare kings to force a draw.


View All News
GM Gukesh D & GM Viswanathan Anand
The best have history here.View 2024 Tour

Welcome to Grand Chess Tour!

Please choose your language: