Wesley So declared group winner, advances to semis in FIDE Grand Prix Berlin

Wesley So FIDE Grand Prix Berlin 2022.
Filipino American Wesley So gained a semifinals slot and will next vie for a finals berth in the FIDE Grand Prix Berlin 2022. FIDE photo.

Wesley So has been declared the group winner and advanced to the semifinals of the FIDE Grand Prix Berlin 2022.

The Filipino American chess grandmaster successfully overthrew his fellow American opponent Sam Shankland in the tiebreaker match on March 29 Berlin time (March 30 Manila time), 1,5:0,5, to claim the Group C leadership status.

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So will next face Iranian Grandmaster Amin Tabatabaei, the winner of Group D, in the two-game semifinal matches scheduled for March 30 and March 31. So will play white pieces in the first match.

A win in the semis would send the Filipino-born three-time and reigning United States Chess Champion to the FIDE Grand Prix Berlin finals against the winner of the match between the leaders of Group A (American Grandmaster Hikaru Nakamura) and Group B (Azerbaijani Grandmaster Shakhriyar Mamedyarov).

The FIDE Grand Prix 2022 is a series of three chess tournaments and the final qualifier for the Candidates Tournament. Berlin is the third and final leg of the series.

Twenty-four of the world’s top players took part in the Series organized by World Chess.

The top two finishers have already been determined by the points system from the first leg to the current leg – Hikaru Nakamura and Richard Rapport will go on to the Candidates Tournament 2022 to determine who will face World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen for the World Chess Championship 2023.

Wesley So was the leading challenger to World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen of Norway during the 2021 Meltwater Champions Chess Tour. The 28-year-old Philippine chess champion is the inaugural and current World Fischer Random Chess Champion who bested Carlsen in his home turf, Norway.

SEND WELL WISHES in the comments below to Wesley So as he plays in the semifinals of the FIDE Grand Prix Berlin!

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