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Aug 19,2002

chess chess

Round 2

Only Anatoly Karpov and Nigel Short managed, in the second round, to build on their success of the first day. Playing in a strict positional manner, they gained victories without apparent effort. Both Milos, playing with Karpov, and Pirrot, who was the opponent of Short, failed to put up an adequate opposition. The game Bologan - Leitao which repeated the game J. Polgar - Leitao from the first round until the eighteenth move, was of a theoretical interest. Bologan refused to follow the way which was introduced by J. Polgar the day before (18. O-O), he also ignored the well known move 18. Nc7+ and preferred to play his own way, namely 18. Rb4. White got a certain advantage, as the result, but failed to achieve a victory. In the game Milov - J. Polgar there was a very tense struggle between worthy opponents. Despite White?s extra pawn, Black managed to maintain the dynamical balance through the game. The losers of the first day, Ricardi and Flores, met in the fifth game of the round. Playing Black, Flores got a good position from the opening and even tried to win the game, but without success. A draw was the result.

Karpov - Milos [E05]

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. g3

Anatoly Karpov chooses the Catalan Opening more and more often lately.

3... d5 4. Nf3 Be7 5. Bg2 O-O 6. O-O dxc4 7. Qc2 a6 8. a4

The continuation 8. Qxc4 b5 9.Qc2 Bb7 which used to be popular in the eighties, is considered to be a drawing deadlock at present.

8... Bd7 9. Qxc4 Bc6 10. Bg5 Bd5

Four months ago the line 10... a5 11. Nc3 Na6 12. Bxf6 Bxf6 13. e4 Nb4 14. Rfd1 occurred in a game between the same opponents (Karpov - Milos, Bali, 2000), and though the Brazilian grandmaster had no grounds to complain about the result of that duel, he refused to repeat it. There were two theoretically interesting games played in this variation: Beliavsky - Rozentalis (Batumi, 1999), where after 14... b6 White got an evident advantage with 15. Ne1 g6 16. Nb5!, and Gelfand – Anand, played just several days ago at the World Cup, in which White also took the initiative after 14... g6 15. Rac1 Re8 16.d5.

11. Qd3 c5

This method is considered to be the most convenient way to equalise the game. It has an alternative of 11... Be4 12. Qe3 with a complex play.

12. dxc5 Nbd7 13. Nc3 Nxc5 14. Qe3 Qa5

The strongest move. After 14... Ng4? 15. Bxe7 Nxe3 16. Bxd8 Nxf1 17. Be7 White loses material. The move 14... Rc8 also gains an advantage for White with 15. Rfd1 Re8 16. Ne5 Qb6 17. Bh3! (Smyslov – Nogueiras, Graz, 1984).

15. Bxf6

A novelty. White got nothing particular both from 15. Rfd1 Bc6, 15. Rad1 Bc6 and from 15. Nxd5 Nxd5 which occurred previously.

15... Bxf6 16. Nxd5 exd5

White managed to create a single pawn by his opponent, still it would be too early to make a definite conclusion as this slight defect of the pawn structure is not perceptible at the moment owing to the activity of Black’s minor pieces.

17. Qa3 Qb6 18. Rab1 Nb3

Black should not have taken the knight away from the centre. Stronger was 18... Rac8, and if, like in the game, 19. Rfd1 (in case of 19. b4?! only White had problems after 19... Ne4), then after 19... Ne4 20. e3 Rc2 Black’s pieces were very active.

19. Rfd1 Rfe8 20. e3 Rac8?

A mistake which allows White to gain a considerable advantage. After 20... d4! 21. Nxd4 (White had nothing after 21. a5 Nxa5 22. Nxd4 Rac8 ) 21... Nxd4 22. exd4 Bxd4 the position was absolutely equal.

21. Nd2!

With this move White offers a very unpleasant choice to his opponent. An immediate capture of the pawn 21. Rxd5 allowed Black to force a repetition of moves with 21... Be7 22. a5 (22. Qa2 Nc1 23. Qa1 Nb3) 22... Qg6 23. Qa2 Nc1 24. Qa1 Nb3.

21... Nxd2 22. Rxd2 d4 23. exd4 Bxd4 24. a5 Qg6?

Black will lose a pawn inevitably, but the presence of bishops of different colours on the board still gives him a chance to make a draw. This is why it was most important to find a good square for the queen’s retreat. Black’s decision cannot be called very lucky. The queen has nothing to do on a white square. Better was 24... Qa7 25. Qb4 Rcd8 26. Qxb7 (no 26. Bxb7?! because of 26... Bc5) 26... Qc5, and after 27. Qxa6 Black returned one of the lost pawns with 27... Re6 still keeping some real drawing chances.

25. Rbd1 Bc5 26. b4 Bf8 27. Bxb7 Rc2 28. Rd4!

An excellent move. White’s rook is ready to participate actively from f4 both in the onslaught upon the black king and in the defence of the white one.

28... Rce2

If 28... Ree2, then 29. Rf4.

29. Qf3 Re1+ 30. Kg2 Rxd1 31. Qxd1 Rb8 32. Qf3 Be7 33. b5 axb5 34. a6 Bc5 35. Rd5

A quick end followed after 35. Rd7 Qf6 (if 35... Rf8, then 36. Bd5 Qxa6 37. Rxf7) 36. Qxf6 gxf6 37. Bd5, when the a-pawn cost a piece to Black.

35... Qc2

If 35... Bb6, then there was 36. Rd7 Qe6 37. Rxf7!

36. Rd7 Kh8 37. Be4!

Suddenly Black’s king suffers a mating attack.

37... Qa2 38. Qf5 1-0 Black resigned.

"He who fears an isolated queen's pawn should give up chess". Siegbert Tarrasch

"The most powerful weapon in chess is to have the next move"! David Bronstein.

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