Wesley So, Caruana lead US Championship with 2 others

Roy Luarca
Wesley So stays on track of his US Chess Championship title defense, sharing the early lead in the all-Grandmaster classical event

Defending champion Wesley So split the point with Aleksandr Lenderman to share top spot with Fabiano Caruana and two others after three rounds of the 2021 US Chess Championship on Friday, October 8 (Saturday, October 9, Philippine time) at the Saint Louis Chess Club in Missouri.

Handling black, So agreed to a draw with Lenderman after 41 moves of a Queen’s Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch variation as they both have three pawns and opposite-colored bishops each.

The top-seeded Caruana trounced rising star John Burke to join So, Ray Robson, and Sam Sevian in the lead of the all-Grandmaster classical event being held over the board.

Sevian handed Jeffery Xiong a second straight defeat and climbed to 2 points like So, Caruana, and Robson, who drew with 2018 US champion Sam Shankland.

In other matches, Darius Swiercz rebounded from a second-round setback to So by subduing Daniel Naroditsky while third seed Leinier Dominguez drew with Lazaro Bruzon.

Bunched at 1.5 points are Dominguez, Shankland, Bruzon, Lenderman, and Burke.

So, also the 2017 winner of the event, and Caruana, the 2016 edition champion, part ways in the fourth round on Sunday.

Also on tap are Shankland against Dominguez, Burke against Bruzon, Naroditsky against Lenderman, Sevian against Swiercz, and Robson against Xiong, last year’s runner-up who’s hogging the cellar with 0.5 points. –