BUCHAREST — Armenia’s GM Levon Aronian defeated Russia’s Sergey Karjakin on Sunday in a playoff to win the Superbet Rapid & Blitz Grand Chess Tour in Bucharest. With his victory, the Aronian secured a spot in the London playoffs next month.

The first game in the playoff ended in a draw, and then Aronian won the second to take the Superbet Rapid & Blitz trophy home.

This result was highly disappointing for Karjakin. The Russian GM needed a clear victory in Bucharest to overtake Maxime Vachier-Lagrave in the overall standings and came incredibly close.

Aronian and Karjakin are now tied for fourth place (behind Magnus Carlsen, Ding Liren and Vachier-Lagrave) in the overall GCT standings, but since Aronian has one more event, he’ll surely take the fourth spot.

Viswanathan Anand came third in Bucharest and is now in sixth place in the Grand Chess Tour. With a good result on home soil in the Tata Steel event later this month in Kolkata, India, he can still make it to London.

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