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The final match of the World Cup goes on like a musketeers' duel. Do you remember those noble king's servants, who fought against each other during the romantic epoch of Alexander Dumas?

Instead of attacking sneaky, they'd shout: «Defend, sir!», and offer mother's healing balm to a wounded enemy. Peter Svidler and Alexander Grischuk fought just like the 17th century musketeers, fencing vigorously with their moves on the board.


"Sir, I really like men of your kind. It will be a pleasure to talk to you later... if I don't kill you today".

A. Dumas, «The Three Musketeers»


Alexander Grischuk and Peter Svidler know each other for more than ten years. Their first tournament game was played (and drawn) at the 2000 World Championship in India. Since that time they met countless times in various tournaments. Svidler has a slight overall lead, however, often the two friends did not put a lot of effort into their peaceful meetings. However, there can be only one winner at the World Cup, so the merciless struggle here is guaranteed.

Losing knights, rooks and pawns is less painful than getting hit by a sword, but the psychological effect is very similar.

Alexander Grischuk lost a rook in the middlegame, and despite the position was still playable, the game ended quickly as if his blunder was indeed decisive.

Peter Svidler extended his winning streak as Black — this is his third victory in a row.

Usually Peter looks very bright after winning a game, but this time he was more quiet rather than happy at the press-conference. He confessed that playing against a good friend bothers him a lot.

Peter and Alexander discussed the game afterwards for quite a while. It seemed Peter tried to console his friend: «Come on, Alex, you'll win another one...»

The relations between the Ukrainian players are far from friendly. Their match looks like a duel between a musketeer and a guardsman ten years ago. Ruslan Ponomariov and Vassily Ivanchuk act politely with each other, but it is hardly a secret that for each of them this match is a matter of principle. The winner will surely feel no sympathy for the loser.

Ruslan Ponomariov changed violet color to green and prepared for another round with the old rival.

Vassily Ivanchuk should be more motivated, because his wants to rehabilitate for his loss since 2002. However, will it affect his game positively, or just create more tension?


Sometimes discussing the game at the press-conference becomes routine. Both grandmasters were more enthusiastic talking about dancing. It turned out they both like to dance.


After the press-conference Ruslan stayed at the press room to browse the web and get a cup of coffee together with grandmaster Sergey Shipov.

The chess security

It has been raining in Khanty-Mansiysk, but it only makes the «golden autumn» look more beautiful.



Maria Fominykh


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