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Alexander Morozevich sole leader in Tal Memorial

Alexander Morozevich won an exciting game against Levon Aronian in the 5th round of the Tal Memorial and moved into the sole lead with 4 points, a full point ahead of the nearest followers.

Moro lined some sort of the Triangle Stonewall with black pieces, but this probably wasn’t a great surprise for the Armenian as the two players already tested a similar setup three years ago in Moscow.

What did come as a little shock was black’s aggression early in the opening. Aronian didn’t want to be a sitting duck and instead sacrificed a Bishop for a handful of pawns, destroying black’s powerful center in the process.

The game became very complicated and Aronian probably rushed a bit to exchange the Queens. He relied on the rolling central pawns, but Morozevich was able to activate the pieces and stop the avalanche.

Alexander Morozevich

Alexander Morozevich

White pawns started disappearing from the board and Aronian resigned when the time control was reached.

The defending champion and world’s top rated player, Magnus Carlsen, started the tournament with four consecutive draws and it didn’t look as he could hope for more than another tie after the opening in the game against the co-leader Teimour Radjabov.

But the Norwegian persistently built up a central break and sometime around the 40th move he already enjoyed better practical chances, according to the Chessdom commentator GM Kamil Miton.

After finally pushing d5-d4, Carlsen gradually improved his position and won the full point in the Rook endgame.

Magnus Carlsen

Magnus Carlsen

The games GrischukCaruana, NakamuraKramnik and TomashevskyMcShane were drawn.

Live games with commentary and computer analysis

Round 5 results:
Grischuk – Caruana draw
Radjabov – Carlsen 0-1
Aronian – Morozevich 0-1
Nakamura – Kramnik draw
Tomashevsky – McShane draw

Round 5 standings:
1. Morozevich – 4; 2-4. Carlsen, Radjabov, Kramnik – 3; 5. Caruana – 2,5; 6-9. Grischuk, Aronian, Nakamura, McShane – 2; 10. Tomashevsky – 1,5.

Round 6 pairings:
Morozevich – Nakamura, Carlsen – Aronian, Grischuk – Radjabov, Kramnik – Tomashevsky and Caruana – McShane.

Photos by Eteri Kublashvili

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