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Candidates 2024 R4: Gukesh shows his grit against World no.2 Fabiano Caruana

by Shahid Ahmed - 08/04/2024

D Gukesh showed his true grit against Fabiano Caruana (USA) in the fourth round of FIDE Candidates 2024. Gukesh made a nice pawn sacrifice which did not give him anything. It was done to prevent any future attack on his kingside. His opponent, Caruana believed that he had an advantage. However, the teenager played precisely, found some nice defensive resources to hold the World no.2 to a draw. Vidit Gujrathi suffered his second consecutive loss of the event. His choice of Ruy Lopez Berlin did not work out as his opponent Ian Nepomniachtchi managed to outplay him. Nepomniachtchi has taken sole lead 3/4. Hikaru Nakamura (USA) and R Praggnanandhaa had an uneventful 24-move draw. Today is a rest day. Round 5 starts tomorrow Tuesday 9th April at 2:30 p.m. local time, 12 a.m. IST. Photos: FIDE/Michal Walusza

Nepomniachtchi gains sole lead

Vidit Gujrathi lost two games in-a-row. In one game, his opponent's choice surprised him, in the latter, his own choice of Berlin in the Ruy Lopez did not turn things out in his favor. Although, it is a long tournament, he needs to regroup quickly and turn things around. Thankfully today is a rest day.

Two calm level-headed strong world-class players faced each other and it was a great battle

Caruana - Gukesh: 0.5-0.5

The head-to-head score between Fabiano Caruana (USA, 2803) and D Gukesh (2743) in Classical rated game is 1.5-1.5. Both of them were leading the tournament heading into the fourth round. When two players make zero mistakes on the board, the result of the game generally ends in a draw. That is exactly what happened. The majority of the game was a queen endgame. Despite being down by a pawn, the teenager ensured that he does not let it become insurmountable.

Position after 17...Ne7

Gukesh sacrificed a pawn when he went 17...Ne7 18.Nxe5 Nxf5 19.exf5 the reason behind this interesting pawn sacrifice is probably to make sure White does not get to launch a devastating attack on the kingside.

Position after 24...Qd4

Caruana mentioned in the post-game interview that he definitely saw 24...Qd4 a family fork after 23...cxb4 24.cxb4 which was a nice defensive resource by Gukesh. 25.Qc1 Qxa7 26.Rxa4 Qb7 27.Qd2 Nd5 28.Bg3 f6! was a nice move. Caruana admitted overlooking it and after that he does not have any chances.

Fabiano Caruana: "Overall, it is kind of a neutral start" | Video: FIDE

Gukesh played fantastic against Caruana
98.3% vs 98.8% Accuracy! An Interesting Game! | Video: GMHikaru
Vaishali: "Our mother is our biggest support" - Praggnanandhaa and Vaishali chat with Anna Burtasova | Video: FIDE
Why did Hikaru Nakamura call the arbiter against Pragg? Commentary by IM Sagar Shah | Video: ChessBase India

Hikaru Nakamura (USA) - R Praggnanandhaa: 0.5-0.5

Nepomniachtchi - Vidit: 1-0

Vidit Gujrathi (2727) eliminated Ian Nepomniachtchi (2758) at FIDE World Cup 2023 last year. Their last Classical encounter at 86th Tata Steel Masters earlier this year ended in a draw. Vidit opted for the Ruy Lopez Berlin. Nepomniachtchi managed to create a central passed pawn on the e-file which turned out to be the decisive factor.

Position after 37.Ke4

Black's rook at b3 is virtually trapped. It didn't get time to take the pawn at b2 and get back in the game. Ra5-b5-b3 was an extremely questionable idea for which he had to pay a big price. 37.Ke4 Be8?? 38.Rxd5+- and it's over.

Post-game Press Conference with Ian Nepomniachtchi | Video: FIDE
The Berlin Endgame Clash - Nepomniachtchi vs Vidit, Commentary by IM Sagar Shah | Video: ChessBase India

Ruy Lopez Berlin did not work out for Vidit against Nepomniachtchi

Nijat Abasov (AZE) - Alireza Firouzja (FRA): 0.5-0.5

Photo Gallery

The legend - Vishy Anand arrives

Nijat Abasov (AZE) arrives with his second Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (AZE) and signs autographs for fans

R Praggnanandhaa surrounded by cameras

Chief Arbiter - IA IO Aris Marghetis (CAN)

Deputy Chief Arbiter - IA Andrew Howie (SCO)

Hikar Nakamura (USA) and Aryan Tari (NOR) with their fans

View from the top - Spectators at the Great Hall in Toronto, Canada | Photo: FIDE/Michal Walusza
Round 4 recap by IM Sagar Shah | Video: ChessBase India

Time control

The time control for each game is 120 minutes for the first 40 moves, followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game with an increment of 30 seconds per move starting from move 41.


The total prize fund is €500000. The top three prizes are €48000, €36000 and €24000. All prize money shall be divided equally among the players with the equal score after 14 rounds regardless tie-break results. In addition, each player gets €3500 euros for every half point scored.

Replay Round 4 live stream

FIDE Candidates 2024 Round 4 Live Commentary by Amruta Mokal and GM Harshit Raja | Video: ChessBase India

Replay Round 4 games

Round 4 results

Round 4 results | Photo: FIDE


Standings after Round 4


Round 5 pairings

Bo.No.Rtg NameResultName RtgNo.
GMPraggnanandhaa, RGMNepomniachtchi, Ian
GMFirouzja, AlirezaGMNakamura, Hikaru
GMGukesh, DGMAbasov, Nijat
GMVidit, Santosh GujrathiGMCaruana, Fabiano



Official site

Tournament Regulations

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