Levon Aronian with good start at Shanghai Final Masters

3-8th September at the Shanghai International Expo, Spanish Pavilion

The first stage of the Shanghai Bilbao Final Chess Masters is taking place on 3-8th September at the Shanghai International Expo, Spanish Pavilion. Levon Aronian, Vladimir Kramnik, Alexei Shirov and 2010 China champion Wang Hao compete in a double round robin tournament for two spots in the Bilbao event.

Sofia and Bilbao rules are valid, which means that draw offers are not allowed and victory is awarded with 3 points (1 for draw). In case of a tied first place, blitz match will decide the sole winner.

The tournament started well for Levon Aronian who skillfully used the pair of Bishops and one open file to force Wang Hao to resignation.

In the other game former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik applied strong positional pressure against Alexei Shirov, but Black was very resourceful in defence and persistent counterplay eventually forced White to moves repetition.

Hao Aronian

Wang Hao – Aronian

Kramnik Shirov

Kramnik – Shirov

Round 1 results:

Wang Hao 2724 – Levon Aronian 2783 0-1

Vladimir Kramnik 2780 – Alexei Shirov 2749 draw

Round 2 pairings:

Levon Aronian – Alexei Shirov

Wang Hao – Vladimir Kramnik

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