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Wesley So bags $60,000 in Croatian chess tilt

Roy Luarca
Wesley So bags $60,000 in Croatian chess tilt
Representing the US, Wesley So finishes 2nd in the Croatian Grand Chess Tour behind world champion Magnus Carlsen

MANILA, Philippines – Wesley So drew with Levon Aronian in the 11th and last round and wound up 2nd in the 2019 Croatia Grand Chess Tour at Novinaski Dom in Zagreb on Sunday, July 7 (Monday, July 8, Manila time).

World champion Magnus Carlsen beat Maxime Vachier-Lagrave to run away with the title and the $90,000 that goes with it.

The 25-year-old Cavite-born So – now representing the United States – posted 7.0 points to rake in $60,000, while Carlsen tallied 8.0 in the round-robin tournament featuring 12 Super Grandmasters with an average Elo rating of 2782.

Both Carlsen and So emerged unbeaten, with the Norwegian winning 5 and drawing 6 and So chalking up 3 wins (Ding Liren, Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, Hikaru Nakamura) and 8 draws.

So, however, gained the most in rating points with 19.5 for a live rating of 2782.5 that pushed him to 4th overall in the world.

Carlsen remained on top with 2881.7, followed by USA teammate Fabiano Caruana (2817.8) and Chinese Liren (2808.2).

The draw with So gave Aronian 6.0 points, the same total posted by Caruana.

Ian Nepomiatchtchi, Anish Giri, and Liren landed at 5.5 points, followed by Sergey Karjakin with 5.

So and Carlsen opted to skip the 2019 Paris Grand Chess Tour Rapid and Blitz event set July 27 to August 1 in Paris, France. They will compete in the Sinquefield Cup slated August 17 to 29 in Saint Louis, Missouri.

The 2019 GCT inaugural leg, the Cote d’Ivoire Rapid, and Blitz tourney were also won by Carlsen with So placing fourth. – 

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