It’s way too hot and wonderful to be blogging these days, so just a quick note:
The Candidate matches are half way through round 2. Annotated games collected here. We have seen a few short GM-draws in less than 20 moves, but not too many. During the 3.rd matchround I followed extensively what I believe were the two most interesting games; Gelfand-Kamsky and Aronian-Shirov. Kamsky had what might be considered a mental breakdown against Gelfand, making him reach move 24 with only 2 minutes left on the clock. He kept playing – this was indeed what made it interesting; it was quite fun to follow his near-bullet play against Gelfand – and he did manage to reach it to the time control, but eventually resigned. Aronian blew it against Shirov by playing 61.f6?? Another kibitzer noticed at the time he played it, that the exact same position with Kc6 is actually in Panchenko’s endgame-book and is a textbook win for white. I don’t own Panchenko’s book myself – I play too much and study too little and anyway, most of what you learn by studying, you can learn the hard way through experience by playing (except perhaps the things FM’s and above need to know, like how to win insanely complicated queen endings with little time left on the clock) – so I have to take his word for it; but it was a russian GM that said this, so I shall assume he knew what he was talking about.
The results and position can be found here. Leko looks sharp, but this might have something to do with the fact that this match is the one with the widest elo-gap. Who do I expect to move on to round three? Leko, Aronian, Grischuk and Gelfand. Surprice! They have the higher elo’s, and they are already in the lead.
As usual, Danish commentary is to be found here.