Vietnam's No.1 chess ace Grandmaster Le Quang Liem's sixth round defeat to the US GM Ray Robson on Sunday has made it impossible for him to retain his Aeroflot title.
After his second loss in a row, plus three consecutive draws and only one win in the opener, the 29th-ranked two-time champion Vietnamese has fallen to the 60th position in Group A with just 2.5 points at the Aeroflot Open 2012 in Moscow. It is now impossible for him to retain the title he successfully defended last year.
The 20-year-old Liem had a chance to beat Robson in the final moves on Sunday when he had a rook and a bishop while the American rival had two bishops.
However, Liem, with an elo of 2714, failed to take his chance and Robson, elo 2596, made better moves to beat Liem and jumped 19th positions to 21st.
The 26-year-old Ukrainian Anton Korobov, elo 2660, is now leading Group A with 5 points after a sixth round win over the 23-year-old Israeli GM Maxim Rodshtein, who fell 4 places to fifth with 4 points.
In the next round of the February 6-17 event, Liem, who has been the only player to have won two Aeroflot championships in a row, will play against the 23-year-old Spanish GM Daniel Alsina Leal, who is currently in the 65th spot.