Jan Nepomniachtchi

The Russian beat the Frenchman Alireza Firouzja with white pieces. In the first round, Nepomniachtchi outplayed the Chinese Ding Liren. After four rounds, the Russian grandmaster leads the tournament table with three points

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Jan Nepomniachtchi

(Photo: Yoshua Arias / EPA / TASS)

Russian grandmaster Ian Nepomniachtchi won his second victory at the Candidates Tournament, which takes place in Madrid.

The Russian played with white pieces and beat Alireza Firouzja, who ranks third in the International Chess Federation (FIDE) rating.

In the first round, Nepomniachtchi outplayed Chinese Ding Liren (second in the FIDE ranking) with black pieces. In the second and third rounds, the Russian played in a draw with the American Fabiano Caruana and the Azerbaijani Teymur Radjabov.

Russian European chess champion will play for Poland

Photo: Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

After four rounds, Nepomniachtchi leads the standings with three points. If he wins, Caruana can catch up with him, who at this moment is playing against Liren.

31-year-old Nepomniachtchi is in seventh place in the FIDE rating. The Russian became the European champion in 2010, as part of the Russian national team twice (2013 and 2019) he won the world team championship. Won the Candidates Tournament last year. In December, in the match for the world chess crown, he lost to the Norwegian Magnus Carlsen, who has held the title of world champion since 2013.

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