Karjakin wins a brilliancy, So returns to 50 percent, Mamedyarov misses a chance to increase his lead
In the Vugar Gashimov memorial 2017 round 5, a couple of tournament trends continue.
So far, every single round, except round 4, saw exactly two decisive games, and round 5 was not an exception.
Also, almost every round so far has witnessed either a brilliant attacking game, or a game with dramatic mistakes.
Round five saw both.
Let's start with the Mamedyarov's game against the out-of-form Harikrishna. After losing yesterday while being a rook up (see round 4 report once again), the Indian played a very uninspiring opening and already after 14 moves found himself in serious trouble.
However, in the complicated middle game position, Mamedyarov, quite uncharacteristically, missed a very strong tactical continuation and let the Indian escape:
Wesley So made Vladimir Kramnik fight against his own weapons as he played the Catalan opening against it's main proponent.
Vladdy chose a solid but passive approach in which he gave up his bishop pair.
He suffered slightly but came close into equalizing, but then made a big missjudgement after which So never let him back in the game:
However, the play of the day award goes to Sergey Karjakin for his sacrifical crush of Topalov.
If we haven't praised him a couple of days ago, maybe it would have never happened, but this is probably going to far.
It could be said that for Topalov the Caro Cann't.
Karjakin - Topalov, game analysis