From Biel to Sochi
By Jennifer Shahade   
July 30, 2008
Dominguez.jpg
GM Lenier Dominguez, Photo Cathy Rogers

GM Alexander Onischuk started off with a solid plus one in the first half of Biel International Chess Festival , but is having a tough time in the second half, losing three games. Alex's first loss of the event was against the Cuban GM Lenier Dominguez--After this game, Alex continued to falter with losses to Alekseev and Bacrot. Meanwhile Lenier went on to become the star of a tournament that at first seemed destined for Magnus Carlsen. With just one round to go Dominguez is a full a point ahead of the field. In the much-awaited Carlsen-Dominguez match-up today, Magnus chose a razor-sharp line of the Dragon, hoping that the complications would result in more chances for a decisive result. It was a thrilling contest which looked like it would go Lenier's way, but Carlsen defended  well and constructed a fortress to neutralize the usually brutal power of a queen on an open board.



Biel Chess Festival

Standings after round 9
1.GM Leinier Dominguez (CUB, 2708)- 6.5

2-3.GM Magnus Carlsen (NOR, 2775) and GM Evgeny Alekseev (RUS, 2708)- 5.5
4. GM Etienne Bacrot (FRA, 2691)- 4.5
5. GM Alexander Onischuk, (USA, 2670)-3.5
6.GM Yannick Pelletier, (SUI, 2569)-1.5

As Biel wraps up, American chess fans can keep waving flags as World Championship Candidate Gata Kamsky picks up the torch at the Sochi Grand Prix (Sochi, Russia, July 31-August 15), which starts tomorrow at 7 AM EST. Catch the action on World Chess Live and the official website. Gata's competition is fierce and includes Ivanchuk, Radjabov and Aronian. Kamsky starts the event with Black against GM Peter Svidler. Check out the complete schedule here.