Andreikin was for a long time a forgotten member of the remarkable club of players born in 1990, which includes Magnus Carlsen, Sergey Karjakin, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave and Ian Nepomniachtchi. Forgotten, that is, if you looked at over-the-board chess. When it came to internet blitz he’d long been a star of the very highest magnitude.
Recently, however, he’s begun to focus on classical chess, where he’s starting to make his mark. Back in 2010 he won the World Junior Championship at the last possible opportunity (aged 20), but his real leap came in 2012. His rating climbed above 2700 for the first time and he won the Russian Higher League to qualify for the Russian Championship Superfinal. He emerged as the surprise winner in a field containing all the top Russian grandmasters other than Vladimir Kramnik and Alexander Morozevich.
skills in speed chess came in particularly useful in the 2013 World Cup, where
despite winning only a single classical game he made it all the way to a final
against Kramnik. Although he lost that contest he’d already qualified for the
2014 Candidates Tournament. He started that event poorly, but as it wore on his mental stability helped him stage a comeback with wins against Veselin Topalov and Levon Aronian. His 50% performance gained him rating points and a creditable 5th place. If he can improve his opening repertoire a World Championship challenge is still a possibility for the laid-back Russian.
Photo: Russian Chess Federation
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