Stunning win for Caruana

Fabiano Caruana sacrificed a bishop and three pawns in the opening and eventually won a seemingly drawn endgame against Maxime Vachier Lagrave to brighten up the eighth round after the FIDE Candidates chess tournament resumed after 13 months at Yekaterinburg in Russia on Monday.

The much-talked about victory saw Caruana join Vachier in the second spot at 4.5 points, half a point behind Russia’s Ian Nepomniachtchi who drew with Anish Giri.

The day’s other winner was Kirill Alekseenko, who defeated fellow-Russian Alexander Grischuk.

The event to find the next challenger to Magnus Carlsen in the World championship match was halted in March last year due to the first wave of the ongoing pandemic.

The results: Eighth round: Fabiano Caruana (USA, 4.5) bt Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (Fra, 4.5); Wang Hao (Chn, 4) drew with Ding Liren (Chn, 3); Ian Nepomniachtchi (Rus, 5) drew with Anish Giri (Ned, 4); Kirill Alekseenko (Rus, 3.5) bt Alexander Grischuk (Rus, 3.5).

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