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The Prague Chess Festival entered the second half, with Abdusattorov in the lead

03 Mar 2024

At 15:00, the 5th round of the Masters, Challengers and Futures tournaments started, as the festival swung into the second half. Up to now, the leading player Nodirbek Abdusattorov also reigned in the fifth round, when he defeated Mateusz Bartel. With four points, he is still at the top of the standings. Praggnanandhaa, who defeated Vidit, emerged victorious from the Indian duel between two Candidates Tournament participants. David Navara made the Czech fans very happy. The home player found the recipe for Gukesh and claimed his first tournament win.

There was not a single draw in the Challengers this time. Third victory at this tournament for Anton Korobov after defeating Mishra now thrones in first place. Second place is currently held by Ediz Gurel, who defeated Václav Finěk on Saturday. Spanish player Jaime Latasa Santos is in third place after five rounds. In the Futures Tournament, Aansh Nandan Nerurka is still in the lead, Pawel Brzezina from Poland second and the third is Tomas Andre from Slovakia.

And how satisfied is the Festival director Petr Boleslav with the course of the festival? "I assess the first half of the festival very positively, I believe that the whole world of chess is watching Prague now. The audience participation is great, every day we have plenty of pectators watching in the main hall. And that makes us very happy! I also have to point out he presence of Vishy Anand in the opening days of the festival, when the high number of visitors, who came for his autograph signing event, took one's breath away. He told me afterwards that he had never experienced such a fan frenzy outside India.

The performances of the players in all the tournaments are fantastic so far, I would not dare to pick a winner, and I am looking forward to the final chess drama very much. Just as the chess public, I am also curious about the further performances of the three Candidates Tournament participants in the Masters tournament, which starts in a month. But today, our David Navara won, and, I believe that anything can happen in the remaining rounds.”

From bankers to chess players
Saturday morning was part of the K CERO INVEST Real Estate & Financial Rapid tournament at the Prague Chess Festival, intended for bankers and other employees from the world of financial consulting and investment. The winner was Martin Ondruš from VIG Reinsurance Services. The winning team is the players of Komerční Banka. The medalists received the signature K CERO leather jacket and players will also get to play the popular Hand&Brain with participants from Masters and Challengers.

Today, the players have a day off and the 6th round will continue on Monday. For thoseinterested in diversifying their demanding festival program, a visit to Karel Janeček's research institution Science 21 is prepared. Here, among other things, chess players will be able to try out a flight simulator and soar virtually into the sky for a while.