Sevian Captures Lead While Ju Wenjun Wins 3 Games

GM Sam Sevian captured the lead on day two of the FTX Road to Miami tournament as he won three games back-to-back before a walkover vs. GM Teimour Radjabov, who left the tournament due to illness.

GM Ju Wenjun had a splendid second day of chess and defeated GMs Richard Rapport, Sam Shankland, and Wei Yi.

How to watch? The games of the FTX Road to Miami preliminaries can be found here as part of our live events platform. The rounds start each day at 9 a.m. Pacific/18:00 CEST.

Sevian’s most prominent opponent on Monday was GM Levon Aronian, who has been struggling so far and needs to do better on the last two days to make it to the knockout phase.

The American-Armenian grandmaster sacrificed an exchange for what seemed to be a strong attack, but Sevian defended well and later got the upper hand.

“It definitely gives me a confidence boost knowing that I can hang with them, that I can beat them, and that’s pretty much what it is,” said Sevian afterward.

Ju, the reigning women’s world champion, is the only female player in the field. She has a good chance to finish among the top eight after an excellent second day. Here’s her win vs. Rapport: 

Ju Wenjun FTX Road to Miami
Ju Wenjun: “I’m kind of surprised that this time I play much better than previous times, and I think maybe because they want to beat me, they choose some unclear game, and I get some chances.” Image: Champions Chess Tour.

India’s rising star GM Arjun Erigaisi is currently in second place but not without some fortunate luck. Against Shankland he was dead lost:

FTX Road to Miami | Day 2 Standings

Road to Miami day 2 standings

All Games Day 2

The 2022 Champions Chess Tour’s fifth event, the FXT Road To Miami, takes place July 10-17, 2022 on chess24. The preliminary phase is a 16-player rapid (15|10) round-robin. The top eight players advance to the knockout phase that 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.

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