So halves point with Nakamura, rises to world No. 20 | Inquirer Sports

So halves point with Nakamura, rises to world No. 20

By: - Editor / @RLuarcaINQ
/ 11:16 PM January 13, 2014

Phenomenal Filipino Grandmaster Wesley So drew with American GM Hikaru Nakamura in the second round Sunday as they shared the lead with three others in the 76th Tata Steel Tournament Masters in Wijk aan Zee, the Netherlands.

Facing Nakamura (Elo 2789) for the first time, So handled white with caution and agreed to split the point with the world No. 3 after 27 moves of Semi-Slav Defense.

The 20-year-old So and Nakamura, 26, raised their total to 1.5 points in the 12-man Category A (average rating 2743) event and were bunched with top seed and world No. 2 GM Levon Aronian of Armenia (2803), No. 10 GM Sergey Karjakin of Russia (2756) and GM Anish Giri of the Netherlands (2737).


In the end, So had five pawns, a queen, two bishops and a knight while Nakamura had five pawns, queen, two knights and a bishop.


Though his listed Fide rating is 2719, So actually boasts a career-best live rating of 2734.3, good for 20th place in the world, following his first-round victory over Hungarian GM Richard Rapport (2691).

So, who swept his six matches to power Webster University to the Pan Am intercollegiate chess crown last December, will handle black against German GM Arkadij Naiditsch in the third round Monday.

Other second-round matches saw Aronian beat world No. 6 GM Fabiano Caruana of Italy (2782) in 58 moves of English Symmetrical; Karjakin draw with GM Pentala Harikrishna of India (2708) after 40 moves of Queen’s Gambit Declined; and Giri subdue Naiditsch in 33 moves of Bogo Indian Defense. Rapport bounced back after crushing GM Boris Gelfand (2777) of Israel after 60 moves of Budapest Defense.

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TAGS: Chess, Hikaru Nakamura, Tata Steel, Wesley So

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