2021 World Cup: It's Down to Sam

GM Sam Shankland is the lone American standing in the 2021 World Cup and Women’s World Cup, having defeated GM Rinat Jumabayev 1½-½ in the fourth round to advance to the Round of 16. GM Jeffery Xiong was eliminated by GM Santosh Gujrathi Vidit by a score of 2-0.

Shankland ground down the Kazakh GM in the first leg of their two-game mini-match, batting back from a worse position round the time control to take the full point.

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GM Sam Shankland, Round 4.1
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GM Sam Shankland (courtesy FIDE / Eric Rosen)

[pgn][Event "FIDE World Cup 2021"] [Site "Krasnaya Polyana RUS"] [Date "2021.07.22"] [Round "4.1"] [White "Jumabayev, Rinat"] [Black "Shankland, Sam"] [Result "0-1"] [WhiteTitle "GM"] [BlackTitle "GM"] [WhiteElo "2637"] [BlackElo "2709"] [ECO "A05"] [Opening "Reti"] [Variation "King's Indian attack"] [WhiteFideId "13702661"] [BlackFideId "2004887"] [EventDate "2021.07.12"] [EventType "k.o."] 1. Nf3 Nf6 2. g3 g6 3. Bg2 Bg7 4. c4 c5 5. d4 cxd4 6. Nxd4 O-O 7. Nc2 Nc6 8. Nc3 d6 9. O-O Bd7 10. b3 Qa5 11. Bd2 Rfc8 12. Rc1 Qd8 13. h3 a6 14. a4 h5 15. e4 Rab8 16. Rb1 Be8 17. Qe2 Nd7 18. Rfd1 Nc5 19. Be1 Na7 20. a5 Nd7 21. Nd5 Nc6 22. b4 e6 23. Nde3 Qe7 24. f4 b6 25. axb6 Nxb6 26. Qd3 Na4 27. Qa3 Na7 28. Nd4 Qc7 29. Bf2 Nc6 30. Ne2 Ne7 31. Rd2 Nb6 32. Rc1 Rd8 33. c5 dxc5 34. Rxd8 Rxd8 35. bxc5 Nbc8 36. Qxa6 Nc6 37. e5 Rd2 38. Be1 Rb2 39. Bf3 Bf8 40. Qa3 Qb8 41. Bf2 N8a7 42. Qd3 Nb4 43. Qd4 Rb3 44. Be4 Bc6 45. Nc3 Nb5 46. Nxb5 Qxb5 47. Bxc6 Nxc6 48. Qc4 Qb7 49. Qe4 Qb5 50. Qc4 Qb7 51. Qe4 Qb5 52. Nf1 Rb2 53. Qc4 Qb7 54. Rc2 Rb4 55. Qe2 h4 56. Qf3 Bh6 57. Be3 hxg3 58. Nxg3 Nxe5 59. Qxb7 Rxb7 60. Rc3 Nc6 61. Ne2 Kf8 62. Kf2 Ke8 63. Ra3 Kd7 64. Rd3+ Kc7 65. Nc3 Ne7 66. Kf3 Nf5 67. Bd2 Rb3 68. Ke2 Kc6 69. Ne4 Rxd3 70. Kxd3 Kd5 71. Bc1 Nh4 72. Nd6 f5 73. Ne8 Kxc5 74. Nc7 e5 75. Be3+ Kc6 76. Na6 Ng2 77. Nb4+ Kd7 78. Nd5 Nxe3 79. Nxe3 Bxf4 80. Nd5 Bg5 81. Nc3 Ke6 82. Ne2 e4+ 83. Kd4 Bf6+ 84. Ke3 Ke5 85. Nc3 f4+ 86. Kf2 Be7 0-1 [/pgn]

In the second game, Jumabayev pressed and pressed, but Shankland held firm to draw and advance to Round 5.

 

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GM Sam Shankland, Round 4.2
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GM Sam Shankland (courtesy FIDE / Eric Rosen)

[pgn][Event "FIDE World Cup 2021"] [Site "Krasnaya Polyana RUS"] [Date "2021.07.23"] [Round "4.2"] [White "Shankland, Sam"] [Black "Jumabayev, Rinat"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [WhiteTitle "GM"] [BlackTitle "GM"] [WhiteElo "2709"] [BlackElo "2637"] [ECO "B00"] [Opening "KP"] [Variation "Nimzovich defence, Bogolyubov variation"] [WhiteFideId "2004887"] [BlackFideId "13702661"] [EventDate "2021.07.12"] [EventType "k.o."] 1. e4 Nc6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. d5 Ne5 5. Bf4 Ng6 6. Bg3 f5 7. Nh3 e5 8. dxe6 Qxd1+ 9. Rxd1 Bb4 10. Bxc7 Bxe6 11. Ng5 Bd7 12. Rd4 Bxc3+ 13. bxc3 Rc8 14. Bd6 h6 15. Nh3 Rxc3 16. Bc4 Rxc2 17. O-O N8e7 18. Bb3 Nc6 19. Rxe4+ fxe4 20. Bxc2 Bf5 21. Re1 Kd7 22. Bg3 Re8 23. f3 Rc8 24. Nf2 Nd4 25. Bxe4 Ne2+ 26. Rxe2 Rc1+ 27. Nd1 Rxd1+ 28. Kf2 Bxe4 29. Rxe4 h5 30. Rb4 b6 31. Ke2 Rd5 32. Rc4 Ne5 33. Bxe5 Rxe5+ 34. Kd3 Kd6 35. h4 Rd5+ 36. Ke3 Re5+ 37. Kd3 Rd5+ 38. Ke3 b5 39. Rf4 a5 40. Rf7 g5 41. hxg5 Rxg5 42. Rh7 b4 43. g3 Kc5 44. Kd3 Kb5 45. g4 hxg4 46. fxg4 Ka4 47. Rh5 Rxg4 48. Kc2 Rg8 49. Kb2 Rf8 50. Rg5 Rb8 51. Rh5 Rb5 52. Rxb5 Kxb5 53. a3 Kc4 54. axb4 axb4 55. Kc2 1/2-1/2 [/pgn]

GM Jeffery Xiong crashed out of the competition with two losses to one of India’s top GMs.

 

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Xiong vs Vidit
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Xiong vs. Vidit (courtesy FIDE / Eric Rosen)

[pgn][Event "FIDE World Cup 2021"] [Site "Krasnaya Polyana RUS"] [Date "2021.07.22"] [Round "4.1"] [White "Xiong, Jeffery"] [Black "Vidit, Santosh Gujrathi"] [Result "0-1"] [WhiteTitle "GM"] [BlackTitle "GM"] [WhiteElo "2709"] [BlackElo "2726"] [ECO "D02"] [Opening "Queen's bishop game"] [WhiteFideId "2047640"] [BlackFideId "5029465"] [EventDate "2021.07.12"] [EventType "k.o."] 1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 d5 3. Bf4 c5 4. e3 e6 5. Nbd2 Qb6 6. Rb1 Bd6 7. dxc5 Qxc5 8. Bd3 O-O 9. O-O Nbd7 10. b4 Qc7 11. Bxd6 Qxd6 12. c4 b6 13. cxd5 Qxd5 14. Qe2 Bb7 15. e4 Qh5 16. Nc4 Rfd8 17. Rbd1 Nf8 18. h3 Ng6 19. Qe3 Ba6 20. Nd6 Rxd6 21. Bxa6 Rxd1 22. Rxd1 Ne5 23. Be2 Nxf3+ 24. Bxf3 Qe5 25. Qc1 h6 26. Qc6 Rb8 27. a4 Kf8 28. a5 bxa5 29. bxa5 Ne8 30. a6 Qc7 31. Qa4 Qc5 32. Qa1 Nc7 33. Rd7 Kg8 34. e5 Rb4 35. Qd1 Nb5 36. Rb7 Nd4 37. Be4 g6 38. Qd2 Rc4 39. Bxg6 fxg6 40. Qxh6 Rc1+ 41. Kh2 Qxe5+ 42. f4 Nf3+ 43. Kg3 Qe1+ 44. Kg4 Ne5+ 45. Kg5 Nf7+ 46. Rxf7 Kxf7 47. Qh7+ Ke8 48. g4 Rc5+ 49. f5 exf5 0-1 [Event "FIDE World Cup 2021"] [Site "Krasnaya Polyana RUS"] [Date "2021.07.23"] [Round "4.2"] [White "Vidit, Santosh Gujrathi"] [Black "Xiong, Jeffery"] [Result "1-0"] [WhiteTitle "GM"] [BlackTitle "GM"] [WhiteElo "2726"] [BlackElo "2709"] [ECO "A41"] [Opening "Queen's Pawn"] [WhiteFideId "5029465"] [BlackFideId "2047640"] [EventDate "2021.07.12"] [EventType "k.o."] 1. d4 d6 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. c4 g6 4. g3 Bg7 5. Bg2 Bf5 6. Qb3 Qc8 7. Nc3 c6 8. O-O O-O 9. Re1 Bg4 10. e4 Bxf3 11. Bxf3 e5 12. dxe5 dxe5 13. c5 Na6 14. Be3 Nc7 15. Rad1 Ne6 16. Qc4 h5 17. Ne2 Rd8 18. Bg2 Ng4 19. Bc1 Rxd1 20. Rxd1 Qf8 21. f3 Nf6 22. b4 a5 23. a3 axb4 24. axb4 Ne8 25. f4 Qe7 26. Bh3 N8c7 27. f5 gxf5 28. Bxf5 Nb5 29. Bb2 Bf6 30. Qb3 Ned4 31. Nxd4 exd4 32. Qf3 Nc3 33. Rd2 Ra4 34. Qxh5 Rxb4 35. Kg2 Na4 36. Bc1 Kf8 37. Ra2 Qe5 38. Bf4 Qxc5 39. Qh6+ Ke7 40. e5 Qd5+ 41. Kh3 Bxe5 42. Re2 f6 43. Rxe5+ 1-0 [/pgn]

Shankland meets GM Peter Svidler in Round 5. With two players advancing to the Candidates Tournament, the website Chess by the Numbers puts Shankland’s chances to advance at 12% — not too shabby!

Play begins each day at 3pm local time, or 8am Eastern / 5am Pacific. Live coverage is available at the FIDE YouTube page.

Pairings for Round 5

World Cup

Magnus Carlsen – Andrey Esipenko
Etienne Bacrot – Kacper Piorun
Alexander Grischuk – Jan-Krzysztof Duda
Santosh Gujrathi Vidit – Vasif Durarbayli
Vladimir Fedoseev – Velimir Ivic
M.amin Tabatabaei – Haik Martirosyan
Maxime Vachier-Lagrave – Sergey Karjakin
Peter Svidler – Sam Shankland

Women’s World Cup

Aleksandra Goryachkina – Dinara Saduakassova
Nana Dzagnidze – Anna Muzychuk
Alexandra Kosteniuk – Valentina Gunina
Zhongyi Tan – Kateryna Lagno

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