(Haslum, December 18th, The below blog item was written in London but unfortunately not published until now. I.ll be back later with more on my activities this week as well as Christmas greetings!)
Yesterday I drew with Anand with black. We played a topical theoretical line and when he allowed me to capture on b5 and play Qc6 any problems I might have had was over. Maybe I could have found a way to play for an edge later on. As it unfolded he found a few necessary defensive moves and a drawn rook ending was reached after two hours play.
Luke McShane tried hard to win with white against Kramnik but ended up losing instead.
Before the last round I was in a must-win situation without serious prospects for 1st as Kramnik anyhow would have the better tie break with a draw against Aronian.
As it was, I had problems just defending as black against Short in the last round. Several mistakes in the middle game left me with an unpleasant position and in the end a two-against-three-pawns-and-rook-ending that was manageable. Draw.
Kramnik had already drawn against Aronian to take sole first at 16 points.
Nakamura played the Kings Gambit as white and was worse for most of the game against Adams, but the latter went astray in the time trouble and lost instead.
Consequently Nakamura took sole 2nd place with 15 points while I.m third with 14 ahead of McShane at 13.
I was a bit low on energy after many long hard fights during Tal Memorial and despite trying my absolute best - by now I feel really exhausted . I.m not happy with most of my games except the win against Nakamura. As it turned out none of my blunders resulted in irreparable damage and the result in itself, 3 wins and 5 draws, is absolutely a good result for me. As it happened both Kramnik (beating all the English players) and Nakamura (also winning four games) scored even better and deservedly ended up 1st and 2nd this time around. Congratulations!
I think the third London Chess Classics was a success and hope to be back next year. Many thanks to the organizer for a great event in a great city!
The next few days I.m fairly busy with .60 minutes. and other media interviews after which I look forward to a well-deserved Christmas break☺,
Magnus Carlsen, London, December 12th, 2011