2-0 again today, and 6 in a row! In the blindfold game today against Jan Smeets, I got an interesting position from the opening after 1. g3 as white, with some advantage. I then failed to find any way to increase my advantage, while he defended quite well. We reached an endgame where I was a pawn up, but I would have had serious problems if he had just stayed put. However, his previous good defending had cost a lot of time, and as he had only one minute left I decided to make a couple of waiting moves, hoping that he would fall into my trap and snatch a pawn. Fortunately for me, he fell right into to trap, and a few moves later he resigned, as mate could only be avoided by giving up a rook. The rapid game was even tougher. After the opening he had a slight advantage in an almost symmetrical position. He then made a few innacuracies, so that I could first equalise, and then even get some winning chances with bishop against knight in the endgame. Short of time, he made the last mistake at move 54, and two moves later he resigned as my h-pawn was queening. Ivanchuk continued his great form, beating Aronian after warding off the Armenian's attack following a piece sac in the rapid game. He now has 6/8 in total, with 3/4 in both blindfold and rapid, exactly the same as the author of these lines. Grischuk and Gelfand share second place with 5/8. In Gelfand's case it should be mentioned that he has scored an excellent 5/6 the last three days, after suffering the same plight as I did the first day. Today he routed Kramnik 2-0, with especially the rapid game being very impressive. This means that the Russian now has a bit of ground to make up, at 50% with 4/8. Tomorrow is a free day. On thursday I will play Sergey Karjakin(20). I won my first classical game against the Russian, who was the youngest ever grandmaster in the world at 12y7m in Corus in January, after a few draws. My games against Karjakin are usually interesting, so I very much look forward to my next two games.

Magnus Carlsen, Nice, March 16th 2010