GM Magnus Carlsen won the Julius Baer Generation Cup on Sunday, needing only two games vs. GM Arjun Erigaisi. It was one of the most dominating performances in recent years for the world champion, who announced that he will make a statement about the alleged cheating case on Monday “or one of the days after.”
The second day of the final on Sunday was a short affair—it couldn’t have been shorter. After winning on day one, Carlsen only needed to tie the second match 2-2 and because he won two games in a row, that was it.
As Black, he opted for a Pirc defense and with the white pieces he played the Samisch line against the King’s Indian. “I sort of played very much throughout this match, like, ‘anti-young-player-chess’ in the sense that I tried to play a little bit older, less theoretical lines that have some serious strategic complexity,” Carlsen said. “It worked out really well.”
Does this mean that the Norwegian GM has been focusing more on psychology lately? The answer was yes: “Now I am playing younger and younger players so it makes sense to employ some different tricks as they catch up.”
Now I am playing younger and younger players so it makes sense to employ some different tricks as they catch up.
In that first game, Erigaisi played his 23rd move without thinking and that was a big mistake:
Game two was even smoother for Carlsen, who said: “I feel like in the second game today already from the opening I had a considerably better position and after that it was fairly straightforward.”
Carlsen also acknowledged that we didn’t get to see the best chess from Erigaisi: “I feel also today that Arjun can do a lot better than this and I’m sure he’ll learn from playing a wily old fox like me a few more times!”
Now that the tournament is over, we can finally expect to hear more from the world champion about the situation with GM Hans Niemann. Carlsen: “I will say a little bit more, whether it will be tomorrow or one of the days after. I generally want cheating in chess to be dealt with seriously. But we’ll see what happens. I’ll certainly put out the statement very soon and that will also not be all you hear from me on the topic.”
I’ll certainly put out the statement very soon and that will also not be all you hear from me on the topic.
In a week from now, with that situation hopefully having calmed down, we can see Carlsen at the bord again as he will be playing the European Club Cup with his team Offerspill (October 3-9 in Mayrhofen, Austria).
The 2022 Champions Chess Tour’s seventh event, the Julius Baer Generation Cup, takes place September 18-25, 2022 on chess24. The preliminary phase was a 16-player rapid (15|10) round-robin. The top eight players have advanced to the knockout phase which consists of two days of four-game rapid matches, which advance to blitz (5|3) and armageddon (White has five minutes, Black four with no increment) tiebreaks only if a knockout match is tied after the second day. The prize fund is $150,000.