After a quick draw against Mamedyarov, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave won the 2021 Sinquefield Cup, securing clear first place after his closest rivals were unable to catch him in the ninth and final round. MVL is the first two-time clear winner of the event, having also taken first place in the 2017 edition.
With all five games drawn today American Grandmaster Wesley So clinched 1st place in the 2021 Grand Chess Tour. After today's round, he secured himself a minimum of 7 GCT points from the Sinquefield Cup and can no longer be mathematically caught in the overall tour standings.
A clear leader emerged today as Vachier-Lagrave broke through the gridlock with a crucial win over Xiong, giving him a half-point lead over So and Dominguez who could only draw their games. Meanwhile, Caruana scored an important victory as Black over Mamedyarov, propelling him into a tie for second place as well.
For the first time in the event all five games in today’s round ended peacefully, as while a few players stood better at various points no one could increase their advantage to a significant degree.
What started off as a slow day with three draws quickly turned dramatic as Vachier-Lagrave bounced back in today’s round to defeat Swiercz, while Xiong took advantage of a time-trouble blunder by Caruana to upset the World No. 2 in stunning fashion.
It was another exciting round as Leinier Dominguez joined the leaders today thanks to a spectacular victory over Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, while Caruana and So drew their individual game to remain on a ‘plus two’ score.
It was a bloody day in Saint Louis as four players won their games today, with Caruana, So, and Vachier-Lagrave remaining in the lead with 2.5/3 so far. Bringing his score to 2.0/3 was Mamedyarov, who defeated Rapport in an incredibly action-packed game.
Wesley So was the sole winner of Day 2, after managing to trick Dariusz Swiercz in a difficult rook endgame to earn the full point as Black. Meanwhile, co-leaders Lenier Dominguez and Fabiano Caruana drew a complicated game, while Maxime Vachier-Lagrave held against Richard Rapport to maintain the lead with 1.5/2.