(Reuters) – Ian Nepomniachtchi will tackle champion Magnus Carlsen for the world title in 2023 after the Russian secured victory within the Candidates Tournament in Madrid on Sunday with a spherical to spare.
The 31-year-old wanted half a degree to affirm his place as Carlsen’s challenger and achieved it by drawing with Hungarian Richard Rapport to seal his second straight Candidates title.
Nepomniachtchi is competing below a impartial flag in Madrid after sanctions imposed on Russian gamers for his or her nation’s invasion of Ukraine, which Moscow calls a ‘particular operation’.
His assembly with Carlsen, who has lifted the final 5 world titles, is way from a executed deal because the Norwegian mentioned in December that he was uncertain if he would defend his championship, citing an absence of motivation.
In such a state of affairs, Nepomniachtchi would tackle the participant who finishes runner-up on the Candidates, a place held by American Hikaru Nakamura heading into the ultimate spherical.
(Reporting by Dhruv Munjal in Bengaluru; Editing by Ken Ferris)