Quang Liem beat European champion to reach FIDE World Cup fourth round

Thursday, 2019-09-19 10:19:12
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Vietnamese GM Le Quang Liem during the third-round match against Russia's Vladislav Artemiev. (Photo: Chess World Cup)
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NDO – Vietnamese Grandmaster Le Quang Liem (Elo 2708) has pocketed at least US$25,000 after beating reigning European champion Vladislav Artemiev (Elo 2746) to reach the fourth round of the ongoing 2019 FIDE World Cup in Russia.

* Quang Liem storms into round two at FIDE World Cup

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World no. 18 Artemiev had been expected to be a tough challenge for Quang Liem for his higher FIDE rating and home-field advantage. However, the Vietnamese star produced some brilliant form holding the Russian opponent to successive draws in the first two classical games of the third round.

The results forced the two players into the four-game rapid phase. The first two games offered a time control of 25 minutes and an increment of 10 seconds per move, with both ending up in ties.

In the remaining two rapid games, each player only had 10 minutes to think and an increment of 10 seconds per move.

Quang Liem took advantage of holding white pieces to deploy drastic attacks from the start, forcing Artemiev to commit a mistake and surrender after 51 moves.

Vladislav Artemiev reacts after being held to a draw by Quang Liem in the second classical game. (Photo: Chess World Cup)

The third-game victory gave Liem the upper hand into the next one. Despite playing black, the Vietnamese chess ace easily held his opponent to a draw, thus securing the overall triumph with a score of 3.5-2.5.

This is the second time Quang Liem has made it through to the fourth round at the FIDE World Cup. He first achieved the feat six years ago.

Next up for Quang Liem will be a crunch meeting against former world no. 2 Levon Aronian from Armenia.

The 2019 FIDE World Cup is taking place from September 10 to October 4, offering a total prize fund of US$1.6 million and a top prize of US$110,000. The two finalists will qualify for the FIDE Candidates Tournament 2020, which aims to decide Magnus Carlsen’s next challenger.