Magnus Carlsen was, as he said, ‘completely crushed’ in the second round of the Qatar Masters earlier this month. His opponent, 23-year-old Alisher Suleymenov from Kazakhstan, is a grandmaster, but on paper nowhere near to the level of the world elite. He played the game of his life, but his achievement was undermined by Carlsen’s intemperate comment (on X) that ‘as soon as I saw my opponent was wearing a watch early in the game, I lost my ability to concentrate’.
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