Magnus Carlsen #1 in the world!

Yesterday our boy, Magnus Carlsen from Lommedalen, defeated Teimur Radjabov with the white pieces in a dragon, while Viswanatan Anand went down in flames against Vessily Topalovafter only 25 moves. With this result, Magnus Carlsen moved up to two more wins than the Indian (Carlsen beat Aronianin the first round, and lost to Topalov in the third, while Anand drew his first three games). That is enough to move into the top spot in the live rankings.

This is an amazing result, which tops a long series of former amazing results from our young fellow. I watched him in 2001, playing in Bergen chess international. Then he was 10 years of age, and actually looked younger. I still remember the talking if it were right to let such a kid, play in such a tournament. Obviously, it was.

As is pointed out all over the Internet, we have no tradition of chess in Norway. We have Simen Agedstein, who perhaps made it to number 16 in the world, andwas a great talent both in chess andfootball. This combination increased to his fame in both sports. Then an injury stopped his soccer carrier, and his chess carrier took a stop also, he never made it to the very elite of chess players.

They are all Russians. But now we have Magnus Carlsen, trained by the same Simen Agdestein, and seconded by the Dane, Peter Heine Nilsen, which both Magnus Carlsen early surpassed as a player. And he just went on and on and on, despite advice from a certain Garry Kasparov, who made the statement he played to much, and studied to little. A statement clearly made, to make Magnus Carlsen go to his school, and pay some extraordinary high salary.

Mr. Magnus Carlsen made it without the help of Garry Kasparov. It seems like he made it out of pure talent alone. In his language there are no one able to really support him, he is just to good, as was said also of Karpov andKasparov. They played at a level, where they could only analyse their games together to understand them, so their seconds had little to offer. An exaggeration, perhaps, both of them were infamous of the big crowd of super chess players who assisted them. Who can assist Magnus Carlsen (no offence to Nielsen and Agdestein, and even to Kjetil Lie, and all the other friends of him, who have assisted him on a personal level, and most certainly have made some useful suggestions in chess also)?

His result is astonishing, even though it is only unofficial. But no player under 18 in the history of chess has been even close to reach the top spot in the world, be it official or unofficial. And the unofficial is calculated in exactly the same way as the official, it is only the FIDE, the chess federation, who only calculate chess rating 4 times a year. The Norwegian (had to be – especially when FIDE controversally decided not to include the aerosvit tournament in tha table, a descission that put Carlsen as 5’th instead of 2’nd in the world) Hans Arild Rude does it in a daily basis. And there the standings are unqestionable, watch for yourself, Carlsen at 2791,3, Anand at 2790,7.

To increase the tension, they are to play each other to morrow. Anand as white. If he wins, he will be back on the top spot. Any other result will keep Carlsen as #1. Of course this is nothing that the players think of, their minds are set to the game, andto the standing in the important Grand Slam torunament in Bilbao, where they are playing. In this tournament Carlsen is trailing Topalov with one less win than him, while Anand is unusual for him among the tail enders. So he really has something to fight for…

Everyone should have a look at the live transmission. If you are to watch only one chess game in your life, this is the one. A 17 year old on top on the world rankings, are facing the world champion and the one on top on the official ratings. Yes, and until the next official list, there are no more tournaments. So if Carlsen holds Anand two victories behind, and watch out for hunting Topalov and – the one we celebrate! – Vassily Ivanchuk, both within striking distance of the top spot also. They are facing each other to morrow, by the way. What a tournament!

Here is the website of the Grand slam: http://www.bilbaofinalmasters.com/en_index.asp (It is actually called Final chess masters, which sounds like a joke, even for a non native English speaking Norwegian!)

Here is a website with live transmission and GM-comments: http://www.chessdom.com/

Here is the best site for news about the tournament: http://www.chessvibes.com/, where you also can find webcam andvideo. You will also find analysis and comments there.

A better blogger about Magnus Carlsen, is of course his dad and second, the very friendly Henrik Carlsen: http://blog.magnuschess.com/

And last, but not least, here are the live ratings by Hans Arild Runde:  http://chess.liverating.org/

Enjoy the fun at five a clock, Spanish time (GT +1)!

PS.

If you watch the videos of chessvibes, neither Carlsen nor Ivanchuk will disappoint. Mr. Ivanchuk, forgetting about the time control, where in Bilbao, there are no increment. He found out with 22 seconds to go, and no draw offers aloud, if not accepted by the arbiter. Watch him explain with a smile, in is animated style, in video number one. In the same video, you can see Magnus Carlsen answer what goals he has for the tournament. Well, he says, it cannot be anything else, but to win. – And except for that, I have no goals.

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