Match 1 Draw: FIDE Grand Prix Berlin 2022 Stage 3, Final Day 1
With clear victories in Friday’s tiebreaker, US General Managers Hikaru Nakamura and Wesley So were set to meet in the final of the third leg of the 2022 FIDE Grand Prix series.
The opener of the finals, with So playing the white pieces, saw the fighters play out a relatively short and fair draw in a line they both knew extremely well.
The second game of the final will take place Sunday of April 3 at 6 a.m. Pacific / 3 p.m. Central Europe.
For the first game of the endgame, So had the white pieces and opted for 1.d4. Nakamura, for his part, used the Nimzo-Indian defense, one of his main defenses against 1.d4.
Soon players were heading down a path they had already explored, both alone and against each other. In fact, at least the first 20 moves seemed like preparation on both sides, even if it was only with his 27th shot which So deviated from previous practice. Coincidentally, it looked like his best chance for an advantage was exactly on the 27th move, but once the chance passed, the game continued to fizzle and a draw was agreed on the 30th move.
However, after the game, neither player was too convinced that White ever got anything, but So was more surprised that Nakamura went for this precise line when Black had several alternatives that gave less possibilities to White to put pressure on Black.
The FIDE Grand Prix Berlin is the final leg of the 2022 Grand Prix. The Berlin tournament runs from March 22 to April 4. Tune in every day at 6 a.m. Pacific/3 p.m. CET for our broadcast.
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