Vietnamese chess master Le Quang Liem ascended to third place at the Julius Baer Generation Cup 2022 after winning two games and drawing two others on Wednesday morning (Vietnam time) - the third day of the online tournament.
The Julius Baer Generation Cup is a tournament in the Champions Chess Tour 2022 with the participation of 16 players, including ‘chess king’ Magnus Carlsen, 2021 World Cup champion Jan-Krzysztof Duda, and former world No. 2 Levon Aronian.
The prize money is US$150,000 in cash, with the champion receiving $25,000.
In the first round, the players played 15 round-robin rapid chess games, gaining three points for each victory and one point for a draw.
The eight players with the highest scores will advance to the quarterfinals.
Liem was ranked eighth in the rankings with 12 points after eight games of the first two days of the competition.
Experts had anticipated a great challenge for the Vietnamese chess star in Game 9 where he was set to take on 2014 world No. 2 and current world No. 8 Levon Aronian.
Thanks to the advantage of the white pawn, Liem actively carried out attacks and gradually dominated the game, while Aronian tried to hold him to a draw.
However, after 57 moves, Liem forced his American opponent to surrender.
After the victory, Liem secured two consecutive draws against Indian chess prodigy Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa and 2018 European champion Ivan Saric from Croatia.
Despite holding the black pawn in Game 12, Liem beat Ukraine’s Vasyl Ivanchuk after 35 moves.
The impressive performances contributed to Liem’s rise to third place in the rankings with 20 points, only five points less than first-placed Magnus Carlsen.
Liem stands a good chance of earning a slot in the quarterfinals.