Quang Liem finishes second at Super GM tournament

Wednesday, 2017-07-19 10:51:36
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Le Quang Liem and Wei Yi in the last round on July 18.
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NDO – A last round draw with Chinese player Wei Yi on July 18 ensured Vietnam’s no. 1 chess player Le Quang Liem a runner-up finish at the 8th Hainan Danzhou Super Grandmaster Chess Tournament which concluded on the same day.

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Ahead of the clash, Liem (elo 2,726) joined Chinese Ding Liren (elo 2,783) in the second-place group with five points, one point behind the leader, Wei Yi (elo 2,738).

The Vietnamese star would have taken the overall championship title if he defeated Wei Yi while Ding Liren also failed to beat Azerbaijan’s Arkadij Naiditsch (elo 2,712).

However, fans did not witness such a fierce match as expected, as the two grand masters proactively played out a draw after only 18 moves.

Liem’s choice to share the point with Wei Yi was understandable as with the disadvantage of playing black against in-form Wei Yi, there was little chance for the Vietnamese master to win the match. Meanwhile, if Liem had of lost the game, he could have dropped to fifth-place position on aggregate.

The last-round tie with Quang Liem crowned China’s chess prodigy, Wei Yi, as the overall champion with 6.5 points after nine matches.

Liem ended up in second place with 5.5 points, ahead of Ding Liren thanks to his superior auxiliaries. Liren could have produced a better finish if he had of won the clash with Azerbaijan’s Arkadij Naiditsch (elo 2,712) instead of a draw.

Chinese Yu Yangyi was the only victor on July 18 after defeating Russian player Vladimir Malakhov. Meanwhile, the remaining two Chinese players, Wang Hao and Lu Shanglei, played out respective ties with Ukrainian opponents, Ruslan Ponomariov and Vassily Ivanchuk.

Despite missing out on the overall crown, Liem can definitely be satisfied with his performance throughout the tournament as he was only ranked fifth among the 10 participants in terms of elo rating. The runner-up finish has earned him an additional 10 elo points, which is expected to lift him to 27th position in the FIDE world rankings.

From August 14 to 19, Quang Liem will compete in the 2017 Grand Chess Tour in St. Louis, the US, a world-level competition where he will have the chance to compete against former “chess king”, Garry Kassparov of Russia.