Vietnamese grandmaster runner-up at Chessable Masters

By Hoang Nguyen   August 9, 2021 | 12:43 am PT
Vietnamese grandmaster runner-up at Chessable Masters
Le Quang Liem (R) plays Wesley So in the final of Chessable Masters on August 9, 2021. Photo courtesy of Chess24.
Le Quang Liem finished second at the Chessable Masters after a tie against American grandmaster Wesley So on the second day of the final.

After losing on the first day, Liem had to win the second day to take the game into the tie-break. He got off to a dream start with a victory in the first match and only needed to draw in the remaining three matches. The second match ended with an intense draw, with Liem close to his target.

However, in the third match, So exploited Liem’s mistakes to win. Liem had no choice but to win the fourth match, which ultimately ended in a draw Monday.

The two days concluded with a 2.5-1.5 victory for So.

"Every game was difficult for me. I think I didn't play my best. I had so many misses and blunders. At some point, I was ready to play the blitz. Liem is a fantastic player and nothing came easy today," So said after the game.

With the title, So won $30,000 while Liem pocketed $15,000.

Chessable Masters is the eighth tournament of the prestigious Champion Chess Tour, a 10-month long series of 10 online chess tournaments featuring top world players, with a prize pool of $1.5 million. All games are held on the website and broadcast on streaming site Twitch. The series runs from Nov. 22, 2020 to Oct. 3, 2021.

Finishing second at Chessable Masters pushed Liem to 10th in the Champion Chess Tour ranking. The top eight will advance to the ultimate competition of the series called Tour Finals. Liem may be invited to the ninth tournament of the series to improve his standing. If not, he still hopes to play in Tour Finals, including players outside the top eight.

"I'm happy about my performance in the tournament. This is perhaps my best result since the Covid-19 pandemic started. I will try my best to get a slot in Tour Finals," Liem said.

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