The chess twittersphere either had a Post-Magnus Twitter depression or a Pre-Christmas Twitter blockade, because the number of chess related tweets reduced dramatically after the world championship match in November.
Fortunately, we had the London Chess Classic to follow. @london_chess: “It is actually the first time in 8 years that the London Chess Classic clashes with the world famous Olympia Horse Show!”
I had the privilege to travel to London for two days and I visited the Classic on Tuesday, 15 December. I had a talk with Dutch GM Erwin l’ Ami @erwinlami , who seconded his compratiot Anish Giri at the Chess Classic in London about the blog and chess tweets in general. He said that he often tweets during big events like the world championship and other big events, but that he does not feel the need to comment everything that is happening in the world of chess. Perhaps he had a talk with Anish about this subject, because after the London Chess Classic @anishgiri: tweeted “New Year’s resolution: tweet less, win more! “
For the benefit of this blog I can only say: tweet more and win more.
Anish Giri, photobombed!
@GMjtis: Giri is an absolute mystery to me. He fights hard, plays sharp positions, is so gifted. But he’s like Magneto in a universe of metal draws.
You can not say that Anish did not try to win a game in London: @Kingsheadchess tweeted: “Come on Giri, he’s only 45! Anish Giri playing on in dead draw, hoping that Mickey Adams will die of old age.”
Talking about old age: @thechessdrum: “Vishy responds to Giri’s “When will you retire” with “When are you going to win a game?” Got ’em!”
Vishy Anand: why retire?
@sergeykarjakin:“ If you ask me Giri has just become World Chess Draw Champion.”
The London Chess Classic is a wonderful chess festival, with many side ents and some of the best players of the world competing in final leg of the Grand Chess Tour 2016. But even the best players have bad days:
@jonathan_rowson; “Classic self-destruction by Aronian. The frustration of not being able to impose your will gets to even the very best players.”
What about former world champion Veselin Topalov? Oh dear, he had many bad days at the Classic. @mamdouh_ismael: “Is it time for Topalov to quit chess? What a shame to lose against So like this …
@LouLasher:” I love the way Topalov plays, right up till his games fall apart. It’s heartbreaking.”
Perhaps Toppi did not prepare very well? What is your guess, Peter Heine Nielsen@PHChess: “Italian blues; Topalov reknown for deep opening preperataion. 50K Euro question: Was this one of them?”
Toplaov had a simple answer: @GrandChessTour: Topalov: “My brain is not working”.
Talking about exciting openings: @TERrendle: “Wow, more excitement at the Classic in Naka vs MVL! Maybe instead of rapid tiebreaks at WC players are forced to play Najdorf?!”
Hikaru Nakamura: Najdorf, why not?
@joshfriedel: “I guess Caruana-Naka and Naka-MVL illustrate why everyone is playing the Berlin.”
@GMJtis: “Now wondering if the absence of Magnus allows the others let their hair down, or if this London Chess Classic is simply blessed.”
Andrew Martin agreed, @AMartinChess: “The games of the London Chess Classic 2016 are quite superb.”
Did we really miss Magnus in London? @TarjeiJS: “Around 9000 simultaneous viewers of the LondonChess live stream. Now, how much higher would that be with Carlsen playing?”
Superb winner of the Chess Classic and the Grand Chess Tour 2016 was Wesley So and he was praised by the Boss himself, @kasparov63: “Congratulations to Wesley So for winning the GrandChessTour! He showed great consistency &, bad news for opponents, he’s still improving.”
@elo_1985_mor: “A dream year for Wesley. Congratulations to him for his achievements. London Chess :best tournament of the year in terms of chess quality!”
However, chess also showed its ugly head in London at the FIDE Open: @london_chess: “The top clash in the FIDE Open, Bacrot-Gupta, was a draw in 5 moves, meaning Bacrot is guaranteed at least shared first!” @elgransenor1: “That was pathetic on board one of the FIDE open today, even by chess standards.”
On the final day, there was a lot of action in the Chess Classic Super Rapidplay, which was won by Valentian Gunina. @ginger_gm: “Amazing performance by Gunina. Well done! Girls are not as good as men!? Don’t think so!
@fionchetta: “What an absolute star Valentina Gunina is – winning the LondonChess Super Rapidplay with 9/10, ahead of 44 fellow GMs!” @londonchessconf: “Brilliant Valentina Gunina dominates London Super Rapidplay 9/10 beating John Nunn, David Howell, Luke McShane. Performance rating 2831 Wow!”
A great end to the London Chess Classic 2016! The next edition which will be played from 29 November – 12 December 2017.
My personal favourite picture of the London Chess Classic.
One last tweet from the press room: @London_Chess: “Apologies about the radio silence for the last hour, but yours truly locked herself out of the press room… “
The next edition of Chess in Tweets Weekly will be published after the FIDE World Chess Rapid and Blitz Championships in Doha from 25-30 December 2016. Merry Christmas everybody and keep on tweeting!