Zagreb GCT, Round 10: Best Round Ever!
Saturday, July 6, 2019 at 3:15PM
Dennis Monokroussos in 2019 GCT Zagreb

Six draws, five finished in less than two and a half hours. Only Fabiano Caruana and Shakhriyar Mamedaryov proved recalcitrant, but inevitably they too caught the zeitgeist and landed safely. What could have been a major game between Wesley So and Magnus Carlsen was a damp squib, as So decided that the money and GCT points and rating points and safety were sufficient arguments for the bird in the hand. If this were a standalone event it would be easier to criticize his strategy, but in this context it makes sense, even if it's lousy for the fans (whose money, GCT points, and rating aren't at stake).

The games - with no notes - are here.

In the last round, Carlsen will have White against Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, and it will be nice to see him aim for a bit of score-settling after losing three consecutive blitz games to the Frenchman earlier this year. I don't think he'll play for a draw, but there's no reason to think he'll burn all his bridges, especially if So - who is half a point behind - ends up drawing with Black against Levon Aronian.

No one else is in the race for first, but, as noted above, these Grand Chess Tour events aren't standalone events. The top four finishers in the Tour's regular season advance to the year's final event, so it's not just first (or second) that matters here. These are the pairings for the final round:

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