Shirov played beautiful chess in Riga!
Grandmaster Alexi Shirov had not intended to participate in FIDE’s Grand Swiss in Riga, but the organizers and Riga fans eventually convinced him to change his mind.
And it was a good thing too. How could Riga’s strongest player since Mikhail Tal not play in his own home town?
Many have already written off the 49-year old superstar, but Alexi Shirov played not only some of the very best chess of his career in Riga, but also some of the best chess seen in the tournament!
He showed that Alexi Shirov can still play the brilliant chess of his younger days…in many of his games Shirov succeeded in sacrificing material and dazzling spectators and opponents alike!
gm Shirov,A – gm Adly,A
Rd.2 Riga 28.10.2021
Alexi played a number of other equally publishable games, but I will leave them for another day.
In the end, Shirov performed at just a shade under 2800, classified at 8th position, qualified for next year’s Grand Swiss and gained some 17 rating points. Not bad for a tournament that he did not even intend to play in!
The Modern Way to Make Draws?!
Riga 7.11.2021 (draw)
Toledo 11.10.2021 (draw)
Reykjavik 16.11.2015 (draw)
The problem of the draw. Especially, the problem of the draw that is agreed before the game even begins. Everyone has an opinion here, but no one has a solution. I am certainly not going to criticize Alexi for this, as he is not the only player who engages in such practices. (Even I have done this from time to time!)