R Praggnanandhaa records first ever classical victory against Magnus Carlsen in Norwegian chess

India's Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa defeated Magnus Carlsen for his first-ever classical victory against the world number 1 in the third round of the Norwegian chess tournament in Stavanger on Wednesday.

In other men's matches, Fabiano Caruana defeated Ding Liren while Hikaru Nakamura got the better of Alireza Firouzja in Armageddon. In the women's section. Humpy Koneru defeated GM Lei Tingjie, Pia Cramling drew with Ju Wenjun and Vaishali held off Anna Muzychuk.

Praggnanandhaa overtook Carlsen, with Caruana in second place. The 18-year-old Indian grandmaster took the lead alone in the open section of the open leaderboard as Vaishali took the top spot after the third round of the women's leaderboard.

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“His opening was provocative. I said he wanted to fight, because otherwise he could play something solid. It didn't bother me at all. We will fight and see how it goes,” Praggnanandhaa was quoted as saying by The Indian Express after his victory.

“I feel good. The game was quite interesting. I got a very good position from the opening. I kind of misread it at one point. I allowed bishop e3, f6… then we told me that I was still playing well. Maybe I was better throughout the match.”

When asked if it was one of his best wins, Praggnanandhaa said, “I don't know, I'll have to check. I didn't think I played really well. I found some better moves. Definitely not my best match,” R Praggnanandhaa said.


Hikaru Nakamura said: “I would like Magnus to take those risks against me or against Fabi. I have this theory that when Magnus plays specifically with the younger guys, he kind of wants to prove something, he wants to chase them and try to beat them and he takes a lot more risks than against us old guys!”

Carlsen, after the defeat, said: “Obviously it's a pretty risky opening choice today. I think his move 10.h3 was a little soft. He thought about it for a long time. I guess he was calculating f4 and the queen c5. I don't really think it's worse for black. So it was a bit of a waste of time. Apart from that, h3 can sometimes be used for rooks and queen for attacks. I wasn’t too impressed with that one.”

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    first publication: May 30, 2024, 07:24 IST

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