A short week after the Candidates finished in London I.ve managed to return to normal life. Of course I still think about it a bit, such as when writing this blog entry☺,

My main feeling is satisfaction and relief with the final result. It reminds me of some key successes earlier in my career.
Losing two out of the last three rounds is of course dissatisfying. I need to understand why and make sure that I do my best to avoid a repeat in the future.

In the first half I think both Aronian and I played very well. I was even happier about my game against Gelfand in round 10. The beauty of the long positional/tactical combination ending with Qa5! was for me one of the highlights of the event. Maybe I made some slight inaccuracies later in the game, but still it was probably one of my best games ever.
In the remaining games I was probably too focused on the result instead of just playing good moves. Apparently also Aronian and Kramnik struggled to find the optimum balance towards the end of the tournament.

I.m not a big fan of the tie-break rules applied in this event. Losing on tie-break would have been highly unpleasant. In fairness I should mention that the suspense experienced was probably partly due to the tie-break rules. Entering the last two rounds we all knew the stakes and it certainly contributed to the nerve and tension till the end. Having a classical or rapid playoff as a not unlikely scenario extending the moment of truth, would reduce the stakes and the tension.

Tomorrow I.m off to Trondheim for a simul with main sponsor Simonsen Vogt Wiik.

Magnus Carlsen, Haslum, April 8th, 2013