World champion: Hikaru Nakamura in Reykjavik

World champion Hikaru Nakamura

It seems that Reykjavik is a city that only Americans can conquer, since Hikaru Nakamura recently defeated the Russian Ian Nepomniachtchi in what was a luxurious and quite complicated final that managed to satisfy the chess world for the brilliant games exhibited by both players.

The match recalls the last world championship played in the city where Bobby Fischer would defeat Boris Spasski 50 years ago, and where only Americans can taste victory.

World Chess Championship Final 960 2022

Hikaru Nakamura would face a tough opponent, as is Nepomniachtchi, who in 2021 had already conquered the bronze medal in the Random Fischer 960 Chess in which Nakamura's compatriot would be the champion, Wesley So in 2021.

  • Game #1.

The confrontation between Hikaru Nakamura and Ian Nepomniachtchi would be brilliant from both players, but it would be the American who would give the first blow on the table by winning the first game of the mini-match with black pieces.

In this position White did not take into account the threats of the black pieces and after a6, Nepomniachtchi was in trouble and ended up conceding the first game of the mini-match.

World champion Hikaru Nakamura
World Champion 960 Chess, game 1.

Despite this, Ian had already returned from a negative score in the semifinals against his arch-rival Magnus Carlsen, whom he beat 3-1.

  • Game #2.

In the second game of the match, Hikaru Nakamura achieved a considerable advantage of +2.5 on move 40, however, he did not want to press for the win and decided that it was better to repeat moves, which could have been a serious mistake.

  • Game #3.

Despite having a lot of pressure, the Russian Nepomniachtchi managed to overcome and in the third game managed to beat Hikaru Nakamura with a brilliant move. He sacrificed the quality in just 20 moves and with the black pieces managed to consolidate a devastating attack, with which the Russian Grandmaster managed to place the 1 to 1 on the scoreboard.

World champion Hikaru Nakamura vs Ian.
Third game of the match.
  • Game #4.

In the last game of the mini match the American offered a draw on move #15. It should be noted that the position was equal and Hikaru Nakamura was the one with the black pieces.

The GM's who commented on the 960 world chess championship wondered if the draw offer was valid? And right away the Russian would accept, so it was known that both wanted to define the title in a single game of armageddon.

Armageddon in the final of the 960 2022 chess championship

As stated in the tournament conditions, it had to be determined who would play with which color and the Russian would win by offering to play with 13 minutes. Hikaru Nakamura had offered 15 minutes on his clock.

The starting position of the tiebreaker was determined, so the players would have five minutes to create their opening strategy.

The game appeared to be fairly uneventful, however, Nepomniachtchi would decide to play different colored bishops in an attempt to secure a draw (which would give him the title of world champion).

But, Nakamura managed to impose himself in the battle by looking for intricate lines that the Russian could not withstand the pressure and ended up giving in through several mistakes that ended with a minus quality.

The American managed to celebrate his historic victory through a video that he shared on his youtube channel, which is one of the media with the highest number of subscribers in the chess field.

It is important to mention that, during the tournament, the streamer analyzed his games and those of the rest of the participants of the 960 world chess championship.

Hikaru Nakamura's performance in Reykjavik was 2924, this was calculated in terms of FIDE rapid ratings, which position him as one of the favorites for the rest of the tournaments with rapid mode, and where he hopes to get another title in the world championships to be played in December.

¿What was the prize of the world Random Fischer 2022 Chess Championship?

The streamer Hikaru Nakamura is very happy to get a world title, although he has always been very close to being crowned champion in the rapid and blitz world championships, but in this case he has managed to consolidate on the Icelandic soil and got more than 100.000$USD.

The world championship of Fisher Random managed to meet the expectations of all those present, even the candidate for world champion Ian Nepomniachtchi expressed on Twitter that he hopes to see more tournaments of this modality.

¿Who disputed the bronze medal of the 960 2022 championship?

Although the final was defined, other matches were also disputed to define the bronze medal and the rest of the final classification.

It is here where the Norwegian GM Magnus Carlsen would have to face the promising young Nordibek Abdusatttorov, who had been defeated in the semifinals by the tournament champion Hikaru Nakamura.

World Champion 960 Hikaru Nakamura vs Magnus Carlsen.
World Champion 960 Hikaru Nakamura vs Magnus Carlsen.

It was Nordibek who would start winning the match against Magnus, by trapping a world champion bishop in standard chess, in an ingenious way. But the Norwegian managed to come back, beat Nordibek with a score of 3 to 1 and won the bronze medal.

Magnus Carlsen did not manage to obtain the title that he is missing in his list of titles, however, he still has the opportunity to take revenge on Nepo and company, when he faces them in the World Blitz and Rapid Championship.

In the other matches, GM Vladimir Fedoseev would face the first world chess champion 960 Wesley So, whom he would beat with two victories and obtain the fifth position.

Meanwhile, grandmasters Matthias Bluebaum and local Hjorvar Gretarsson remained at the end of the rankings in seventh and eighth place.

But, both maintained an interesting tournament complicating all the matches they played and even showed moments of ingenuity and excellent creativity.

PlayOff Score.

Curiosity: The former world champion Bobby Fischer invented the 960 chess or Random Fischer, and declared that this was the future of chess, since with the advent of computers and super chess engines, chess was only about memorizing moves and who studied more.

If you liked Chess 960 and want to learn more about standard chess, we recommend a book for you to learn everything you need to know about the openings, and you will find it here.

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