Added on 1/14/2017

GM Pavel Eljanov  

The chess superheroes approached the 2017 Tata Steel Master tournament cautiously: Carlsen, So, Karjakin, Giri, and Aronian all drew in round 1. Eljanov, who is one of the strongest "outsiders", won his game with Rapport, and after the opening round leads solo. Pavel showed a good technical command in the game, and forced Rapport to resign.  

The Dutch lion was able to pull off a draw pawn down against Adhiban, in a nice Rook 'n Knight ending.  

In an interview after his game, Carlsen said that Wesley So is a very pragmatic player, when Magnus was asked if he thought that Wesley had played for a draw. A nice way for the World Champion to describe a game that he didn't like so much, trying to be nice with his opponent at the same time. Carlsen then said that he's not in Wijk aan Zee to make chess history, by winning the tournament for the six time, but he only thinks about playing chess and having fun. We don't believe you one bit, Magnus! :-) A fun note: both Giri and his wife WGM and IM Guramishvili drew in a Sicilian Najdorf. Is there a chance they are sharing preparation?  Also, according to Alina l'Ami, who took this nice photo of the two strong players, it is the first time that a married couple plays in the Master and Challenger tournaments in the same edition.


Here is GM Alex Yermolinsky's recap of Round 1.


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Tomorrow Round 2 at 7:30 EST - 13:30 CET.

Pairings: Aronian - Wei Nepomniachtchi - Andreikin Carlsen - Wojtaszek Giri - So Rapport - Karjakin Van Wely - Eljanov Harikrishna - Adhiban