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Tata Steel Group A Tournament

Levon Aronian9/13(+7 -2 =4)[games]
Magnus Carlsen8/13(+4 -1 =8)[games]
Teimour Radjabov8/13(+3 -0 =10)[games]
Fabiano Caruana8/13(+4 -1 =8)[games]
Vasyl Ivanchuk7.5/13(+3 -1 =9)[games]
Hikaru Nakamura7.5/13(+3 -1 =9)[games]
Gata Kamsky7/13(+3 -2 =8)[games]
Sergey Karjakin6.5/13(+5 -5 =3)[games]
Loek van Wely5.5/13(+0 -2 =11)[games]
Boris Gelfand5/13(+2 -5 =6)[games]
Veselin Topalov5/13(+1 -4 =8)[games]
Vugar Gashimov5/13(+1 -4 =8)[games]
David Navara4.5/13(+1 -5 =7)[games]
Anish Giri4.5/13(+2 -6 =5)[games]
* Chess Event Description
Tata Steel Group A (2012)

Played at the De Moriaan Centre in Wijk aan Zee, the Netherlands 14-29 January 2012. Rest days: 18, 23 and 26 January. The rounds began at 1:30 pm, except the last round which began at 12:00. Time control: 100 minutes for the first 40 moves, then 50 more minutes for the next 20 moves, followed by 15 more minutes to finish the game, with 30 seconds added per move from move 1. Tournament category: XXI (2755). Chief arbiter: Pavel Votruba.

Levon Aronian won with 9/13.

Elo 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 1 Aronian 2805 * 0 ½ 1 ½ 1 1 1 ½ 1 ½ 1 0 1 9 =2 Carlsen 2835 1 * ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ 1 1 1 ½ ½ 8 =2 Radjabov 2773 ½ ½ * ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ ½ 1 1 ½ 8 =2 Caruana 2736 0 ½ ½ * ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 1 ½ ½ 1 8 =5 Ivanchuk 2766 ½ ½ ½ ½ * ½ ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ 1 1 1 7½ =5 Nakamura 2759 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ * ½ ½ 1 1 ½ ½ 1 ½ 7½ 7 Kamsky 2732 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ * 1 ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 0 7 8 Karjakin 2769 0 1 0 0 ½ ½ 0 * 1 0 1 ½ 1 1 6½ 9 Van Wely 2692 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ 0 * ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 5½ =10 Gelfand 2739 0 0 ½ 0 1 0 ½ 1 ½ * ½ ½ ½ 0 5 =10 Topalov 2770 ½ 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ 0 0 ½ ½ * ½ ½ 1 5 =10 Gashimov 2761 0 0 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ * ½ 1 5 =13 Navara 2712 1 ½ 0 ½ 0 0 0 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ * ½ 4½ =13 Giri 2714 0 ½ ½ 0 0 ½ 1 0 ½ 1 0 0 ½ * 4½

Official site:

Previous: Tata Steel Group A (2011). Next: Tata Steel Group A (2013). See also Tata Steel Group B (2012) and Tata Steel Group C (2012)

 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 91  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Carlsen vs V Gashimov 1-0672012Tata Steel Group AA30 English, Symmetrical
2. Navara vs Topalov ½-½312012Tata Steel Group AA20 English
3. Radjabov vs Caruana ½-½272012Tata Steel Group AD85 Grunfeld
4. Karjakin vs Aronian 0-1422012Tata Steel Group AC78 Ruy Lopez
5. Nakamura vs Ivanchuk ½-½212012Tata Steel Group AD31 Queen's Gambit Declined
6. Kamsky vs Van Wely ½-½412012Tata Steel Group AD78 Neo-Grunfeld, 6.O-O c6
7. Gelfand vs Giri 0-1702012Tata Steel Group AD02 Queen's Pawn Game
8. Giri vs Radjabov ½-½242012Tata Steel Group AE81 King's Indian, Samisch
9. Caruana vs Karjakin 1-0652012Tata Steel Group AE46 Nimzo-Indian
10. Topalov vs Van Wely ½-½582012Tata Steel Group AE81 King's Indian, Samisch
11. Aronian vs Nakamura 1-0592012Tata Steel Group AA88 Dutch, Leningrad, Main Variation with c6
12. Navara vs Gelfand ½-½302012Tata Steel Group AC42 Petrov Defense
13. V Gashimov vs Kamsky ½-½412012Tata Steel Group AC84 Ruy Lopez, Closed
14. Ivanchuk vs Carlsen ½-½572012Tata Steel Group AD56 Queen's Gambit Declined
15. Carlsen vs Aronian 1-0682012Tata Steel Group AD31 Queen's Gambit Declined
16. Gelfand vs Topalov ½-½352012Tata Steel Group AD45 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
17. Karjakin vs Giri 1-0372012Tata Steel Group AC07 French, Tarrasch
18. Kamsky vs Ivanchuk ½-½302012Tata Steel Group AD11 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
19. Van Wely vs V Gashimov ½-½232012Tata Steel Group AA33 English, Symmetrical
20. Radjabov vs Navara 1-0322012Tata Steel Group AD73 Neo-Grunfeld, 5.Nf3
21. Nakamura vs Caruana ½-½422012Tata Steel Group AD86 Grunfeld, Exchange
22. Aronian vs Kamsky 1-0582012Tata Steel Group AD85 Grunfeld
23. Gelfand vs Radjabov ½-½302012Tata Steel Group AE92 King's Indian
24. Topalov vs V Gashimov ½-½552012Tata Steel Group AD16 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
25. Caruana vs Carlsen ½-½342012Tata Steel Group AC67 Ruy Lopez
 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 91  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 88 OF 88 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jan-30-12  Jim Bartle: Check it out: Noting time for each move would be great (as in Tal's book on the 1960 match), but that requires a lot of effort and takes up lots of space. Just noting draw offers (with a peace sign?) requires almost no change at all.
Jan-30-12  Kinghunt: <Check it out: Noting time for each move would be great (as in Tal's book on the 1960 match), but that requires a lot of effort and takes up lots of space.>

It would be really easy to do (and display) electronically. It would be simple to correlate DGB board signals with a clock, and chessbase is capable of displaying times when reviewing games.

Jan-30-12  Jim Bartle: Knowing the times of the moves adds to understanding and the drama of the game, seeing how much time it took players to make moves at times.
Jan-30-12  kramputz: Goofy demands $20,000 for a simultaneous when he comes to New York City.
Jan-30-12  wareopening: When is the next big tournament?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Peligroso Patzer: <wareopening: When is the next big tournament?>

Good question (except that what you mean precisely by "big tournament" is unclear).

As far as <elite> tournaments are concerned, presumably (since it was not held in 2011) there will NOT be a Linares tournament this year (for many years - through 2010 - the next elite event after Wijk aan Zee), NOR a Melody Amber tournament (seemingly permanently cancelled, and which, although not an altogether serious tournament, was one that attracted elite players). Presumably, there WILL be tournaments in Biel (in recent years, a marginally elite event) and Dortmund, but probably they are still several months away. (Those events are typically held in July.)

Not sure whether to expect another Bazna Kings tournament in Romania in June.

Jan-30-12  Shams: <Peligroso Patzer> Back in August, it was said that Linares was a definite "go" for March 2012. Is there new information?
Jan-30-12  benjinathan: <Shams> I understood that it was on for the second half of the year.
Jan-30-12  benjinathan: Topolov:

But Linares 2012 takes place in the second half of the year, so I want to participate in Wijk aan Zee, one of the the longest tournament (13 rounds), as early as possible.

Jan-30-12  Shams: <benjinathan> Thanks. Did Linares find a second city to share hosting duties with?
Jan-30-12  Kinghunt: Not tournaments per se, but we have the Kramnik-Aronian and Anand-Gelfand matches coming up in April and May.
Jan-30-12  LIFE Master AJ: <<Jan-29-12 AuN1: <LIFE Master AJ: The very brilliant game, A Giri vs Aronian, 2012, will be my "Game of The Month" ( for February, 2012. If you have any comments, drop by my forum.>

i think the best game of the tournament was giri vs. gashimov, but that's just me.>>

No motivation to even deeply examine that game ... if I featured it, no one would care. (Neither player did real well in the tournament.)

No offence, but I think you miss the general thrust of the whole column. (Good game, by a top GM. The winner did not necessarily have to win the tournament, but at least performed notably - say, above average.)

Jan-30-12  LIFE Master AJ: BTW, Giri finished dead last, and Gashimov was not too far behind. I am pretty sure there won't be a lot of excitement about a game by two tail-enders ... ... ...
Jan-31-12  galdur: Old news from April 2nd of last year but

<el magistral se celebrará entre la segunda quincena de marzo y la primera de abril> "will be held between the second half of March and early April"

It´s certainly a pity that this fixture has succumbed to economic concerns.

I wonder though what it would cost to stage a tournament like Tata Steel A. Quarter of a million dollars? Let´s say half a million. Doesn´t seem that much for an event of this magnitude.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Diademas: <LIFE Master AJ: BTW, Giri finished dead last, and Gashimov was not too far behind.> Or ahead.. ;)
Jan-31-12  orkney35: I wonder how many true chess fans there really are? I would be very happy to pay $10-20 to follow a chess tournament like Tata. I don't think there would be 25,000 others.
Jan-31-12  siamesedream: <Magnus Carlsen`s Blog

Tata Steel Chess 2012 � Back home again

A draw would secure sole victory for Aronian in the last round of Tata Steel Chess 2012, and he needed just 10 minutes and 12 moves to share the point with Radjabov. Congratulations! A well deserved victory. The early last round has never been my favorite, but I managed to muster sufficient motivation to play for a win as black against van Wely. The Stonewall variation is a little better for white, but I managed to equalize and was quite optimistic after e5 and Rxe5. Qe6 was a mistake as his response f4 forces enough exchanges to make it fairly easy for white to reach a drawn ending. In retrospect I should have tried d4! instead and the game would be alive. Caruana outplayed Gelfand in a queen ending to reach +3 and tie for second with me and Radjabov. Overall +3 is not a bad result, it was my expected score. Taking into account the unacceptable number of blunders I made in the second half of the tournament the end result could well have been worse. Hence I�m somewhat unhappy with my own play but not the result. It is not surprising that most of the competitors (including myself) make more mistakes than usual during such a long event held in the dark of winter but I need to try to find a remedy for the future. My impression was that the well-organized event (chess festival really) experienced more visitors than ever and I hope to be invited back for the 75th edition next year. I�d like to thank all the people involved in the organizing committee as well as all the volunteers! Interestingly the main Tata Steel speaker at the prize giving expressed his hope that this unique tradition will continue beyond next year and this is the first time I�ve heard anything about prospects beyond the 2013 jubilee. Great news! I travelled back to Norway on the morning flight together with my father and sisters Ellen and Signe (who had visited the tournament the last week) and look forward to a week or two of relaxation. I don�t know when my next tournament will take place. This is unusual for me, but hopefully blissful ignorance will make it easier to properly relax and recharge the batteries for future challenges. Magnus Carlsen, Haslum, January 30th, 2012

2012-01-31 16:00:38>

Jan-31-12  benjinathan: <I wonder how many true chess fans there really are? I would be very happy to pay $10-20 to follow a chess tournament like Tata. I don't think there would be 25,000 others.>

Obviously the number is very small. Two years ago I was at The Canadian Open in Toronto. I watched the top board Luke McShane and Shabalov (the male version) and I was the only member of the audience.

Admission was free.

Granted it was not Carlsen and Aronian and granted that many of what might be the audience was actually playing in the Open, but still...

Jan-31-12  Bratek: <When is the next big tournament?><The Grand Slam Chess Association announced on Sunday that the world famous tournament in Linares, Spain will be held again this year, after it was cancelled in 2011>
Jan-31-12  orkney35: Hey Benjinathan,
Did you happen to know Bryon Nickoloff?
Feb-01-12  benjinathan: <orkney35>

Sorry, no. He died before I started playing chess.

Feb-01-12  nero2011: tHANks a heap Bratek :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: I thought the commentator on the last video on the official site was saying "traditional piss-up" until I saw them all eating pea soup!
Feb-02-12  ajile: <LIFE Master AJ: BTW, Giri finished dead last, and Gashimov was not too far behind. I am pretty sure there won't be a lot of excitement about a game by two tail-enders ... ... ...>

Hats off to Aronian for winning in a very tough tournament. But winning doesn't necessarily mean your games are the most interesting. Sorry to pop your bubble.

Premium Chessgames Member
  WTHarvey: Here is a link to 13 chess puzzles from critical positions from the 2012 Wijk aan Zee tournys at What's the best move ??
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