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Jun 15,2002

chess chess

Round 4

Group A

No changes in this group. The leaders Milos and Azmaiparashvili did not want to tempt providence and agreed to a draw very quickly. In the game Gulko – Morozevich a draw was achieved only after the opponents tried to catch a winning chance for almost forty moves but failed. As for the game Dreev – Aleksandrov, it was a real miracle. The most skilful Russian grandmaster had an extra piece, and still he failed to win.

Dreev - Aleksandrov [D38]

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. Nc3 Bb4 5. Bg5 h6 6. Bxf6 Qxf6

A. Aleksandrov plays this variation of the Queen’s Gambit regularly, so his opponent had an opportunity to prepare well for its lines.

7. Qb3 c5 8. cxd5 exd5 9. e3 Nc6 10. Bb5 O-O 11. dxc5 d4 12. Bxc6 dxc3 13. Qxb4 cxb2 14. Rb1 bxc6

In case of 14... Qxc6 15. O-O a5 16. Qc3 Bh3 17. Qxb2 Qg6 18. Ne1 Be6 19. Rc1 Black lost a pawn and got no compensation for it in the game Atalik - V. Gaprindashvili (Philadelphia, 2000).

15. O-O!

White would like to capture on b2, but then in case of 15. Rxb2 Ba6 he was deprived of the castling. As for 15. Qxb2, after 15... Qg6 16. O-O Bh3 17. Nh4 Qh5 18. gxh3 Qxh4 19. Qd4 Qxh3 20. Qe4 Rae8 Black got a better play in the game Najer - Aleksandrov (St.Petersburg, 2000).

15... Bh3

After 15... Ba6 16. Rfe1 Rab8 17. Qa3 Bc4 18. Nd4 Rfe8 19. f3 Qg5 20. Nxc6 Rbc8 21. f4 Qd5 22. Ne5 White managed to achieve his advantage in the long run in the game Seirawan - J. Polgar (Amsterdam, 1995).

16. Rxb2 Rad8

If 16... Qg6, then after 17. Nh4 White’s queen looks very good on the fourth horizontal, unlike the mentioned game Najer – Aleksandrov where it was positioned on the second.

17. Nd4 Qg5?

This move will cost Black a piece, though after 17... Qg6 18. f3 his position was also not too good.

18. f4!

Everything gets clear after this strong move. Black will suffer material losses inevitably.

18... Qg6 19. f5 Qg5 20. Rf3 Bg4 21. Rg3 h5 22. h3 Rfe8 23. Qc3 Re4 24. hxg4 hxg4 25. Rb4 Rd5 26. Qd3 Re8 27. Qe2 Re4

28. Qd3?!

White missed an opportunity to win in one: after 28. Ne6! Qxf5 (28... fxe6 29. Rxe4) 29. Nxg7 Black would have resigned.

28... Re8 29. Rb1?

Now that White let Black escape on the previous move he decides to get rid of a pawn. After a plain 29. Rc4 White’s victory was just a question of time.

29... Qh4 30. Kf2 Rxc5 31. Qd1 Re4 32. Rb8+ Kh7 33. Rb3?

Another bad move. After 33. Qb3! Re7 (a sacrifice with 33... Rxd4 34. exd4 Rxf5+ 35. Kg1 gave nothing to Black) 34. Rf8 Qf6 35. Rxg4 White would have won easily despite all his previous dereliction.

33... Rce5 34. Qc2 c5 35. Ne2 Rxf5+ 36. Kg1 Rfe5 37. Rc3 g6 38. Rc4 Qe7 39. Rxg4 Rxe3 40. Nf4 Qd6 41. Kf2

The time control is over, and it is evident that to achieve the material advantage consisting of a piece against two pawns by Black will be not at all easy.

41... Qf6 42. Kg1 Qd6 43. Rh4+ Kg8 44. Kh2 a6 45. Ra4 Kf8 46. Qc4 R3e4 47. Qxa6 Qxa6 48. Rxa6 c4 49. Rc6 Kg8 50. a4 Re8 51. Kg3 Rd4

52. Nh3?!

Black’s chances for a draw get higher with every following exchange. This is why 52. Rc5!? deserved attention, and if 52... Ra8 (no 52... Re3+ 53. Kf2 Ra3? because of 54. Rc8+ Kg7 55. Ne6+), then after 53. a5 c3 54. Nd5 Rxh4 55. Kxh4 c2 56. Ne7+ Kg7 57. Nc6 White held back his opponent’s pawn and kept his own.

52... Rxh4 53. Kxh4 Re4+ 54. Kg3

White fails to achieve the goal also with 54. g4 because of 54... c3 55. a5 Ra4 56. Rxc3 (if 56. Kg5, then 56... Kg7) 56... Rxa5 57. Rc8+ (in case of 57. g5 Black exchanged White’s last pawn after 57... Rf5) 57... Kg7 58. Rc7 Kg8 (there was no 58... Kf6 because of 59. Ng5) 59. Nf2 Ra4, and White failed to get to f6 with his knight.

54... c3 55. Rxc3 Rxa4

This endgame is most likely a draw because to reinforce the position of White’s pieces is hard since there are no supporting squares for the knight close to the pawn shelter of the black king.

56. Ng5 Ra5 57. Ne4 Ra4 58. Nf6+ Kg7 59. Rc6 Ra3+ 60. Kh4 Ra4+ 61. Kh3

If 61. g4, then 61... Kh6 was the simplest variant.

61... Ra3+ 62. Kh2 Ra7 63. Rd6 Ra4 64. Rb6 Rf4 65. Nd5 Rd4 66. Rb5 Rd3 67. Nf4 Ra3 68. Rb6 Ra4 69. Kg3 Ra3+ 70. Kg4 Kh6 71. Rf6 Kg7 72. Rd6 Kh6 73. Nd3 Ra5 74. Kf4 Ra4+ 75. Kf3 Ra5 76. Rf6 Ra3 77. Ke4 Ra4+ 78. Ke3 Kg7 79. Rd6 Ra2 80. g3 Ra5 81. Rc6 Rg5 82. Kf3 Rf5+ 83. Nf4 Ra5 84. Rc3 Rb5 85. Ra3 Rc5 86. Ke4 Rc4+ 87. Ke5 Rc8 88. Nd5 Rc6 89. Ra7 Rc4 90. Ne3 Rc5+ 91. Nd5 Rc4 92. Ra8 Rc1 93. Ra3 Rc6 94. g4 Kh6 95. Kf4 Rc4+ 96. Kf3 f5

Thus Black exchanges White’s last pawn, and the game proceeds to a well known drawn endgame in which White’s extra piece is not enough for him to win.

97. gxf5 gxf5 98. Ne3 Rb4 99. Nxf5+ Kg5 100. Nd6 Kf6 101. Ra5 Ke6 102. Ne4 Rb1 103. Nd2 Rd1 104. Nc4 Rc1 105. Rc5 Rh1 106. Re5+ Kf6 107. Rb5 Ke6 108. Re5+ Kf6 109. Re4 Kf5 110. Ne3+ Kf6 111. Kf4 Kf7 112. Re5 Re1 113. Ra5 Ke6 114. Ra6+ Kd7 115. Ke4 Re2 116. Kd4 Rd2+ 117. Ke5 Re2 118. Ra3 Rd2 119. Nf5 Re2+ 120. Kd5 Rd2+ 121. Nd4 Ke7 122. Ke5 Kf7 123. Ra7+ Kg6 124. Ra6+ Kf7 125. Ra1 Kg6 126. Rg1+ Kf7 127. Rf1+ Ke7 128. Kd5 Rd3 129. Rf2 Rd1 130. Rf3 Rd2 131. Ke5 Rd1 132. Re3 Ra1 133. Nc6+ Kd7 134. Nb4 Ra5+ 135. Nd5 Ra6 136. Nf6+ Ke7 137. Kf5+ Kf7 138. Nd5 Rd6 139. Re5 Rd7 140. Nf4 Rd1 141. Re6 Rf1 142. Re3 Ra1 143. Rd3 Ra5+ 144. Nd5 Ra1 145. Rf3 Re1 146. Rf2 Ke8 147. Nf6+ Ke7 148. Ne4 Ra1 1/2-1/2 Draw.

Group B

The third round changed the situation in the group. Xu Jun who played White against Nigel Short got a space advantage but failed to gain any profit from it and lost after a series of mistakes. Another leader, Ye Jiangchuan, playing Black with Ruslan Ponomariov , defended skillfully in a dangerous position and got an important half-point which allowed him to stay the single leader. In the game between M. Gurevich and V. Ivanchuk White (the Belgian grandmaster) got the advantage of two bishops and kept it in the struggle which followed. Still, he did not manage to achieve his advantage and was content with a draw.

Xu Jun-Short [A40]

1. d4 e6 2. c4 b6 3. a3 g6 4. Nc3 Bg7 5. e4 Ne7 6. Nf3 Bb7 7. Be3

After 7. Be2 Black got a counterplay after 7... O-O 8. O-O f5 9. e5 h6 10. h4 d5 11. exd6 cxd6 12. Bf4 Nc8 13. Qd2 Kh7 14. Rae1 Nd7 15. Bd1 Re8 in the game Xu Jun - Miles (Beijing, 1996).

7... d6

In the game Milov - Miles (Biel, 1996) after 7... f5 8. e5 h6 9. h4 d6 10. exd6 cxd6 11. Bf4 a6 12. Be2 Ra7 White might develop an initiative with 13. Qd2! to be followed with 0-0-0.

8. Qd2 h6 9. Bd3 Nd7 10. O-O g5 11. d5 Ng6

A slight reinforcement. After 11... e5 12. Ne2 f6 13. Ng3 h5 14. b4 h4 15. Nf5 Nxf5 16. exf5 g4 17. Ne1 Qe7 18. Be4 White got a more promising position in the game Naumkin - Bini (Toscolano, 1996).

12. Bd4 O-O 13. Bxg7 Kxg7 14. Ne2 c5 15. dxc6 Bxc6 16. Bc2

After 16. Nfd4 Bb7 White had a choice between a quiet 17. Bc2 and a more aggressive 17. f4 Nxf4 18. Nxf4 gxf4 19. Rxf4 Ne5 20. Raf1 where the activity of white rooks was outweighed by the strong position of Black’s knight on e5.

16... Nde5 17. Nxe5?!

Despite the deformation of Black’s pawn structure this move is worse for White’s position since a weak square d4 appears in his camp. After 17. Nfd4 Bb7 18. b3 White kept a positional advantage and, respectively, a more free play.


17... dxe5 18. Qxd8 Rfxd8 19. Rfd1 Kf6 20. f3 h5 21. Kf2?!

Black’s problems get worse after this move. Better was 21. Rxd8 Rxd8 22. Rd1 Rc8 and only then 23. Kf2.

21... Nf4!

Just in time. Black prevents an exchange of the rooks with a tactical trick

22. g3

White missed the time for mass exchanges. After 22. Rxd8 Rxd8 23. Rd1 (if 23. Nxf4 exf4 24. Rd1 Rxd1 25. Bxd1, then after 25... Ke5 Black’s king came into White’s rear) 23... Rxd1 24. Bxd1 White encountered 24... Nd3+.

22... Nxe2 23. Kxe2 g4 24. Ke3

Probably White should have ventured on the position to appear after 24. fxg4 hxg4 25. Ke3 in which the square d4 was defended from an intrusion of Black’s pieces.

24... gxf3 25. Kxf3 Rd4 26. b3 a5 27. Rxd4

White is forced to surrender his lines. After 27. Ke3 Rad8 28. Rf1+ Kg6 29. Rad1 f6 he would have to exchange on d4 or allow f6-f5 anyway.

27... exd4 28. Ke2 e5 29. Rf1+ Kg6 30. Bd3 f6 31. Kd2 Bd7 32. Rc1

32... h4!

Black wants to open up the files in order to attack White’s camp with his rook.

33. c5

After 33. gxh4 Rh8 34. c5 bxc5 35. Rxc5 Rxh4 36. Rxa5 Rxh2+ 37. Ke1 Kg5 White lost still quicker.

33... bxc5 34. Rxc5 hxg3 35. hxg3 Ra7 36. Bc4 Kg5 37. Ke2 Bg4+ 38. Kf2 Rh7 39. Rxa5 Rh2+ 40. Ke1 Bf3 41. Bd3 Kg4 42. Ra6 Rh6 43. Kf2 Rh2+ 44. Ke1

33... f5!

The appearance of two joint passed pawns decides the game in Black’s favour.

45. Rg6+

If 45. exf5, then 45... e4.

45... Kh5 46. exf5 e4 47. Rg8 Ra2 48. Bxe4

48. g4+ Bxg4 49. Bxe4 would not have helped White because of 49... Re2+.

48... Bxe4 49. g4+ Kh4 50. Rd8 d3 51. Rd4?!

With this move White loses quickly. 51. f6 was more stubborn, though after 51... Re2+ 52. Kd1 (in case of 52. Kf1 Kg3 Black mated) 52... Rf2 53. Rd4 Bg6 Black would have coped gradually with White’s pawns too.

51... Re2+ 52. Kd1 Kg5 0-1 White resigned.

Group C

Piotr Svidler joined the leading group which consisted of Evgeny Bareev and Sergei Movsesian after the third round. This happened after he won a confident victory over A. Rizouk, while Bareev and Movsesian made draws. The game Zhang Zhong - Bareev lasted for six moves which is a peculiar record of the tournament, and in the game between Fedorov and Movsesian a draw was fixed only after it became clear that there was no way for Black to break through the defence of the Byelorussian grandmaster in the endgame.

Svidler-Rizouk [C45]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4

Piotr Svidler reminds us that apart from his usual Ruy Lopez he knows the Scotch too.

3... exd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nxc6 bxc6 6. e5 Qe7 7. Qe2 Nd5 8. c4 Ba6

The system which is chosen by Black is strategically rather risky, because if he fails to gain some specific advantage, then his light-squared bishop which is eliminated by the white pawns will constitute a considerable weakness.

9. b3 g6 10. f4 Bg7 11. Qf2 Nf6 12. Be2 d6

The line 12... Ne4 13. Qe3 f5 14. Ba3 d6 15. Nd2 g5 16. exd6 Nxd6 17. Bh5+ Kf8 18. Qxe7+ Kxe7 19. O-O-O gave a better endgame to White in the game Goloshchapov – Moiseenko (Ordzhonikidze, 2000).

13. Ba3!

In the game Van der Wiel - Beliavsky (Groningen, 1994) they played 13. Bf3 O-O 14. O-O Bb7 15. Bb2 Nd7 16. exd6 cxd6 17. Bxg7 Kxg7 18. Nc3 whereafter White held a slight advantage.

13... O-O 14. Nc3 Nd7 15. O-O f6 16. exd6 cxd6 17. Rad1

Now Black’s serious problems are evident.

17...Nc5 18. Bf3 f5

19. Na4!

After this move Black’s position will fall apart like a house of cards.

19... Nxa4 20. Bxd6 Qf7 21. Bxf8 Rxf8 22. bxa4 Qxc4 23. Qxa7 Rf7 24. Qb8+ Rf8 25. Qd6 Rc8 26. Rfe1 Qxa4 27. Qe6+ Kh8 28. Qxc8+!

White’s ordinary combination finishes the destruction of Black’s position.

28... Bxc8 29. Re8+ Bf8 30. Rxf8+ Kg7 31. Rxc8 Qa7+ 32. Kh1 Qxa2 33. Rc7+ 1-0 Black resigned.

Group D

V. Anand who led this group from the very first round played with P. Tregubov, and, though he had White, he did not insist on a keen struggle and was satisfied with a draw soon. Playing Black against M. Tissir, V. Tkachiev managed to squeeze his opponent’s position already on the twentieth move, and White’s attempt to sacrifice a piece and break through brought him to a crushing defeat. The game Khalifman - Gelfand was ended practically in the opening with a defeat of the FIDE World Champion who obtained no worthy compensation for a sacrificed piece.

Khalifman - Gelfand [B81]

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Be3 e6 7. g4 e5

Not long ago Black feared to make this important move and preferred a modest 7… h6, but for the last month there were played several interesting games of great theoretical importance in this variation.

8. Nf5 g6 9. g5 gxf5 10. exf5 d5 11. Qf3

In case of 11. gxf6 Black defends his position. So, the recent game Z. Almasi - Svidler (Polanica Zdroj, 2000) developed as follows: 11... d4 12. Bc4 Qc7 13. Qd3 dxe3 14. O-O-O exf2 15. Bxf7+! Kxf7 16. Qd5+ Kxf6 17. Ne4+ Ke7! 18. f6+ Ke8 19. f7+ Ke7 20. Qd2! Qb6! 21. Qg5+ Kxf7 22. Rhf1 Bh6 23. Rxf2+ Ke8 24. Rd8+ Qxd8 25. Qxh6 Qe7, and still White’s attack which looked most dangerous could not give him more than a draw.

11... d4 12. O-O-O Nbd7

13. gxf6

The continuation 13. Bd2 Qc7 is the most topical line of this variation today. At the recent Rubinstein Memorial in Polanica Zdroj there were two bright games on this subject: 14. Bd3 Nc5 15. gxf6 dxc3 16. Bxc3 Qc6 17. Qe3 e4, and White’s attack stalled (Shirov - Svidler, Polanica Zdroj (round 1)) and 14. gxf6 dxc3 15. Bxc3 Qc6 16. Qg3 Bh6+ (more fundamental was 16... Qxh1!? 17. Bxe5 Qe4 18. Bc7 h5!) 17. Kb1 Bf4 18. Qd3 O-O?! (18... Rg8! was stronger) 19. Rg1+ Kh8 20. Bb4 Rg8 21. Rxg8+ Kxg8 22. Be7, and White’s attack decided the game (Shirov - Van Wely, Polanica Zdroj, 2000).

13... dxc3 14. Bc4 Qxf6 15. Rhg1

If 15. Qh5, then 15... Rg8.

15... h6

Also 15... h5 16. Qd5 Bh6 17. Bxh6 Qxh6+ 18. Kb1 Qf6 19. Rde1 was seen (Simacek - Kalod, Svetla, 1994). At the same time 15... Bh6 was not very good for Black because of 16. Bxf7+! Qxf7 (if 16... Kxf7, then 17. Qh5+) 17. Bxh6 Qxa2 18. Qxc3 with a rather dangerous attack by White.

16. Kb1?

A new, most likely unlucky move. 16. Qh5 Bc5 (if 16... Nc5, then 17. Bxf7+) 17. Bxc5 Nxc5 18. Bxf7+ Ke7 (in case of 18... Qxf7 White had 19. Rd8+) 19. Bg6 cxb2+ 20. Kb1 Bd7 (if 20... b6, then after 21. f4 e4 22. Rd5 White had certain compensation for the piece) 21. Qf3 occurred previously in the game Badzharani - Rybincev (USSR, 1989, published in Inf. 47/282) and demonstrated that White’s initiative should not be underestimated here.

16... Nc5!

Now Black has no particular problems, whereas White misses a piece.

17. Qe2 Bxf5 18. f4 Be6 19. fxe5 Qxe5 20. Bxe6 Nxe6 21. Qf3 Qb5 22. b3 Qc6 23. Qf6 Rh7 24. Rgf1 Rd8

Black’s pieces are getting engaged in the play, and White is unable to create any real threat to Black.

25. Rde1 Rd5 26. Bc1 Be7 27. Qf3 Bg5 28. Qg3 Kd7 29. h4 Bxc1 30. Qg8 Bd2 31. Rxf7+ Rxf7 32. Qxf7+ Kd8 33. Rxe6 Rd6 34. Qg8+ Kc7 35. Qg7+ Kb8 0-1 White 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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