Wesley So drew with Romanian Bogdan-Daniel Deac to retain the lead with fellow American Levon Aronian after seven rounds of the 2022 Grand Chess Tour’s Superbet Chess Classic in Bucharest, Romania Thursday.
So, who once held the solo lead after the fourth round, split the point with Deac after 25 moves of a Queen’s Gambit Accepted to hike his total to 4.5 points, the same output of Aronian who also halved the point with fellow American Fabiano Caruana in 26 moves of a Bishop’s Opening.
So hopes to end the nine-round tournament on top as he was battling World No. 3 Alireza Firouzja of France and fellow United States bet Leinier Dominguez-Perez in the last two rounds at press time Saturday.
Aronian, for his part, was tackling World Championship runner-up Ian Nepomniachtchi and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov of Russia.
At stake here is a $350,000 (P18.3 million) prize fund with $100,000 (P5.2 million) going to the champion and $65,000 (P3.4 million) and $48,000 (P2.5 million) to the second and third placers, respectively.
Breathing down the leaders’ neck was France’s Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, who downed Hungarian Richard Rapport, with four points.