So much for German efficiency! Murphy’s Law in practice: what ever could go wrong, did go wrong! The official website was effectively down, not letting anyone register. The WiFi inside the tournament hall shut down for several hours. The toilets had no running water. Two of the participants could see Polgar and company analyze their game while they were playing. And if that is not enough, the hall was too noisy as all of the players had difficulty concentrating…a real CIRCUS!
The playing hall. Noisy and invasive. ”Perhaps when you put the players down in a dark dungeon and look down on them like the Colosseum, they fight like gladiators?!” — Kasparov on Twitter.
gm Karjakin – gm Mamedyarov Round 1
Generally, it was agreed that the play this round was poor. Nerves and circumstances!? Karjakin here loses an endgame that normally he would have no problem drawing.
gm Aronian – gm Ding Round 1
Aronian curiously had difficulty remembering his preparation and in the end opted out for a repetition when all of the experts said he was winning! Easier said than done!
gm Caruana – gm So Round 1
A very poor game by So who seemed to self destruct right from the early middlegame. Fortunately, for him it is a very long tournament! Lots of time to recover.