Nakamura stays unbeaten as he drew his game against Wei Yi. Karjakin failed to even his score against Carlsen as their game ended in a draw as well.
The defending champion of the tournament, GM Wesley So, finally bags home his first win in this event over his nemesis, Anish Giri, in the eighth round of Bilbao Masters Final 2016.
The game opened with the classic Giuoco Piano. Eventually, they found themselves maneuvering the game with four-knights play leading towards the endgame, until strategic play led Wesley So to be up by a clear pawn by move 46. Anish Giri found himself trapped in a mating net and resigned after white’s 57th move. See diagram of the game below:
And thus, here, Giri cannot stop the mate by the next move in either 58. Rg7+ or 58. Nh4+.Replay »
Because of that win, Wesley So is now number 8 in the live ratings ranking, overtaking Anand and Karjakin:
Bilbao Round 7 saw no change in the relative scores as all the games were drawn. Magnus Carlsen had slight pressure throughout against Wei Yi without ever being objectively much better. Careful calculation saw Wei Yi hold the draw. Hikaru Nakamura looked like he was getting somewhere against Wesley So but in the end the game petered out to a draw. Anish Giri had very little advantage against Sergey Karjakin and they traded to a draw.
Halfway through the tournament, Magnus Carlsen still leads by 3 points. In Bilbao, the three-point rule applies.
They were heavily fought matches, but draws nonetheless. All three games. Chessbase writes:
Like it or not, Magnus Carlsen is the player who provides the greatest entertainment in Bilbao. In round five he played with Black against Anish Giri and managed to create winning chances from an equal position. However, Giri’s tenacious defense allowed him to draw. Sergey Karjakin and Hikaru Nakamura played an old line of the Queen’s Gambit Declined and after an improvement by White Black quickly forced a draw. Wesley So tried hard to win against Wei Yi but had no success. After five of ten rounds Carlsen leads with 10.0/15.
That is the quality of games that Carlsen is showing in Bilbao that his title should be CG instead of GM.
After four rounds and twelve games in Bilbao Masters Final 2016, four of the games were decided (not drawn), all of which involved World Champion Magnus Carlsen, with 3 wins and 1 loss.
After the loss to Hikaru Nakamura in the opening round, Carlsen came back with a vengeance and won all of his next three games, the latest victim is the defending champion Wesley So.
That is the quality of games that Carlsen is showing in this year’s edition of Bilbao Chess. So high that someone actually tweeted his title should be CG (i.e., Chess God) instead of GM. Thus, he now is way ahead of the pack:
The rest of the games were drawn, thus leaving Nakamura the sole leader at the end of the very first round.
After 12 losses and 18 draws in their previous match ups, Hikaru Nakamura finally won against Magnus Carlsen in a classical format game. That happened in the very first round of the Bilbao Masters Final 2016.