Apr 25, 2001
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Round 6

Svidler - Van Wely [B50]

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. c3

White refused from an opening dispute concerning main lines of the Sicilian Defence, having chosen a less committing continuation.

3... Nf6 4. Bd3 Nc6 5. Bc2 Bg4 6. h3

White reveals the intentions of the black bishop immediately. There was an alternative to the move in the game: 6. d3 to be followed with Nb1-d2, so that in case of an exchange on f3 there would be a capture with the knight, and the control of the square d4 would be kept.

6... Bxf3 7. Qxf3 g6 8. O-O Bg7 9. Qe2 O-O 10. d3

Black’s activity on the queenside can be slowed down but there is no way to stop it. After 10. a4 a6 11. Na3 e6 12. d3 b5 13. axb5 axb5 Black got a good counterplay on the queenside in the game Heissler - Khalifman (Germany, 1992).

10... b5 11. Nd2 Nd7 12. Nf3 b4 13. Bd2 Rb8

The only move, but probably 13... Qa5 14. Rfc1 Qb5 15. Rab1 Rab8 which occurred in the game Schubert - Serper (Gausdal, 1991) was more precise.

14. Ba4!

So, White still managed to accomplish the programmed advance d3-d4.

14... Qc7 15. Rfc1 Rfc8 16. d4

White got his way in the opening. Now he will have a slight but lasting initiative.

16... bxc3 17. bxc3 Rb2 18. Qa6 Ncb8 19. Qd3

With the queen’s shuttle-like manoeuvre White reinforces the pawn d4 to proceed then to the rook b2 which penetrated into White’s rear too far.

19... Nb6

If 19... Nc6, then White probably would have played 20. Rcb1.

20. Bd1 Nc6 21. Rcb1 Rxb1 22. Rxb1 cxd4 23. cxd4 d5 24. e5 Nc4 25. Bg5 e6 26. h4 Rb8 27. Bb3

White decides to part with his advantage of two bishops because after 27. Rxb8+ Qxb8 black knights could have developed an unpleasant activity on the queenside.

27... N6a5 28. h5 Nxb3 29. axb3 Nb6

Black could have kept the knight active with 29... Qb6, but after 30. hxg6 fxg6 31. Bf6!? Bh6 32. Nh4 the overload of the queenside with Black’s pieces would begin to tell.

30. hxg6 fxg6

After 30... hxg6 White would be able to arrange pressure on the kingside, for instance with 31. Nh2 to be followed with a blow on g4.

31. Bd2

Now 31. Bf6 gave nothing because of 31... Bxf6 32. exf6 Qf7.

31... Nd7 32. b4 Nf8

Black tries to keep the knight close to his king, probably fearing a possible White’s attack, connected with the moves Nf3-g5 and Qd3-h3.

33. b5 Qd7

33... Qb6!? deserved attention (with the idea 34... a6), and after 34. Rb4 Qa5 35. Rb3 Qa4 the black queen might undertake a dangerous raid into White’s camps.

34. Ne1 h6 35. Qb3 Qf7 36. Ra1 g5 37. Nd3 Ng6 38. Nc5 Nh4 39. Ra6 Rb6 40. Ba5 Rxa6 41. bxa6

The time control is over. As before, White’s chances look a bit better.

41... Qf5

42. Qh3??

A terrible move. White’s slightly better position becomes absolutely hopeless in a single moment. It’s clear that the black queen should not be allowed to get to g4 as it would arrange a lot of trouble for White from that square. So, after 42. Qd3? Qg4 43. g3 there was 43... Qxd4!. But White could have played 42. f3 or 42. Qd1, keeping all his advantage.

42... Qxh3 43. gxh3 Nf3+ 44. Kg2 Nxd4 45. Nd7

In case of 45. Bb6 there was 45... Nb5.

45... Kf7 46. Bb6 Nb5

Now White will loose the pawn e5 too. 46... Nc6 was less precise because of 47. Bc7.

47. Bc5 Ke8 48. Nb8 Bxe5 49. Nc6 Bf4 0-1 White resigned.

Movsesian - Ivanchuk [C82]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Nxe4

The open variation of the Ruy Lopez lost a great deal of its popularity after the tenth game of the match Kasparov - Anand (New York (m/10), 1995), but still it occurs sometimes in the practice of the strongest chess players.

6. d4 b5 7. Bb3 d5 8. dxe5 Be6 9. Nbd2 Nc5 10. c3 Bg4

At present White tries to avoid the complications to appear after 10... d4 11. Ng5.

11. Bc2 Qd7 12. Re1 Rd8 13. h3 Bh5 14. Nf1 Be7 15. g4

A tough move. Usually a more quiet 15. Ng3 is played here.

15... Bg6 16. Ng3 Bxc2 17. Qxc2

One of games which were played in the German League was drawn right in this position.

17... Ne6 18. a4 O-O 19. axb5 axb5 20. Nf5 Rfe8 21. Be3 Bf8 22. Rad1

In some lines a rook can be very helpful on the a-file, so the question about which of them should go to d1 is not clear.

22... g6

23. Nh6+

This move, apparently, active, has a serious shortcoming: the function of the knight on h6 will be to engage White’s pawns and pieces in its defence. 23. N5d4 was preferable.

23... Kh8 24. g5

As a matter of fact, White admitted that his previous move was a mistake, and he is right. In case of 24. Rd2 (if 24. Re2, then there was 24... d4) 24... Na5 25. b3 c5 26. Red1 Qb7 White’s position got considerably worse.

24... Bxh6 25. gxh6 b4 26. Qd2 bxc3 27. bxc3 Kg8 28. Bg5 Nxg5 29. Qxg5 Qe7 30. Qf4 Rd7 31. Qf6

White proceeds to the endgame where, despite his spoiled pawn structure, he has good drawing chances owing to the constrained position of Black’s king, whereas after an aggressive 31. Nh2 to be followed with 31... f5 32. exf6 Qxe1+ 33. Rxe1 Rxe1+ 34. Kg2 Re4 35. Qg5 Kf7 he failed to get an attack which would compensate the defects of his position.

31... Qxf6 32. exf6 Rf8 33. c4

The strongest move. After 33. Ne5 Nxe5 34. Rxe5 c6 35. c4 (in case of 35. Rd3 Rd6 36. Rf3 there was an unpleasant 36...Re6!) 35... Rfd8 36. cxd5 Kf8 Black kept some chances to win the rook endgame.

33... d4 34. Ng5 Rd6 35. Ne4 Re6 36. Nc5 Re5 37. Rxe5 Nxe5 38. f4 Nxc4 39. Rxd4 Nd6 40. Na6 Ne8!

All Black’s pieces are crowding on the eighth horizontal, and the unpretentious move with the knight allows Black to cause some material damage to White’s position.

41. Kg2 Nxf6 42. Nxc7 Kh8 43. Rd6 Ng8

44. f5!

One white pawn which constrained the black king is changed with another.

44... Nxh6

After 44... gxf5 45. Nd5 f6 46. Kf3 Nxh6 47. Nxf6 Black had no winning chances.

45. f6 Nf5 46. Rd7 Kg8 47. Nd5 Re8 48. Kf2 h6 49. Nc7 Rb8 50. Nd5 Re8 51. Nc7 Rb8 52. Nd5 Kf8 53. Nc7 Rb2+ 54. Ke1 Rb1+ 55. Kf2 Rb8 56. Kf3 Kg8 57. Ke4 Rc8 58. Kf4 Nd4 59. Nd5 Kf8 60. Ke5 Nf3+ 61. Kf4 Ng5 62. h4 Rc4+ 63. Ke3 Ne6 64. Ra7 Rc8 65. Nb6 Re8 66. Nd7+ Kg8 67. Ne5 Ng7 68. Kd4 Nf5+ 69. Kd5 Ne3+ 70. Kd4 Nf5+ 71. Kd5 Re6 72. Ra8+ Kh7 73. Rh8+!

A storm in a teacup.

73... Kxh8 74. Nxf7+ Kg8 75. Kxe6 Kf8 76. Ne5 Nd4+ 77. Kd5 Ne2 78. Nxg6+ Kf7 79. Ne5+ Kxf6 80. Ng4+ Kg6 1/2-1/2 Draw.

Shirov - Gelfand [B52]

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. Bb5+

Alexei Shirov’s main opening weapon against the Najdorf Variation in the Sicilian Defence was beaten in the game with P. Svidler, so he has to choose a less committing continuation this time.

4... Bd7 4. Bxd7+ Qxd7 5. c4 Nf6 6. Nc3 Nc6 7. d4 cxd4 8. Nxd4 g6 9. f3

Previously the grandmaster from Spain played 9. O-O in this position, but after 9... Bg7 10. Nde2 (there was no 10. f3? because of 10... Nxe4) instead of the traditional 10... O-O they play now the computer-like 10... Qe6!? 11. Nd5 Qxe4 12. Nc7+ Kd7 13. Nxa8 Qxc4 14. Nb6+ axb6 with an absolutely unclear estimation.

9... Bg7 10. Be3 O-O 11. O-O Qd8

Most players prefer to transfer at first the king’s rook to the queenside with 11... Rfc8 in this position, and only then begin to reinforce the position of the queen. Boris Gelfand has a particular opinion about this problem.

12. Nde2 Qa5 13. Rc1 a6 14. Nf4 Nd7 15. a3?!

Previously 15. Qe2 Rfc8 16. Rfd1 Nce5 17. Nfd5 Qd8 18. Na4 occurred in this position with better chances by White. The move in the game weakens the position of White’s pawns considerably, and Black will gain profit from this mistake soon.

15... e6!

Black covers the square d5, notwithstanding that he will lose a pawn in this way.

16. Qxd6?

White hardly should have taken the sacrifice. 16. Rf2!? deserved attention with the idea that in case of 16... Nde5 17. b4 Qxa3 White got a draw with 18. Ra2 Qxb4 19. Ra4 Qb2 20. Ra2.

16... Nde5 17. Qc5

No better was 17. b3 Rfd8 18. Qc5 Nd3 19. Qxa5 (if 19. Nxd3, then 19... Rxd3) 19... Nxa5 20. Rc2 (after 20. Bb6 Nxc1 21. Bxa5 Bxc3 22. Bxd8 Bd4+ 23. Kh1 Rxd8 24. Rxc1 Be3 White lost immediately) 20... Nxb3 with an evident advantage on Black’s side.

17... Rfc8 18. Nce2

In case of 18. Qxa5 Nxa5 19. c5 Nac4 White had problems, as well as in case of 18. Rfd1 Qxc5 19. Bxc5 Nxc4.

18... Qa4

Putting more pressure on the white pawn c4 and freeing the square a5 for the knight at the same time.

19. Bf2

In case of 19. Nc3 Qxc4 (after 19... Qb3 20. Nd1 White still held somehow) 20. Qb6 Nd7 21. Qxb7 Bd4 22. Ncd5 (if 22. Bxd4 Qxd4+ 23. Kh1 Nc5, then the white queen is caught) 22... exd5 23. Rxc4 Bxe3+ 24. Kh1 dxc4 25. Nxg6 (if 25. Nd5, then after 25... Nc5 26. Qb8 Rab8 the white queen is caught again) 25... hxg6 26. Qxd7 Bd4 White lost material.

19... Bf8 20. Qe3

White hardly could have escaped after 20. Nc3 Qb3 21. Qb6 Qxb6 22. Bxb6 Nxc4 23. Na4 N6e5.

20... Nxc4 21. Qc3 N6a5 22. Nd4?!

White will lose a piece, but after 22. Rfd1 or 22. Rcd1 his position was also poor.

22... e5 23. Nd5 exd4 24. Bxd4 Ne5 25. Qe3 Rxc1 26. Rxc1 Bg7 27. b4 Nac6 28. Bxe5 Bxe5 0-1 White resigned.

Almasi - A. Fedorov [B40]

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6

Two opening failures in the second and fourth rounds made the Byelorussian grandmaster refuse from the Dragon Variation in the Sicilian Defence.

3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 Bb4 6. e5 Nd5 7. Bd2 Nxc3 8. bxc3 Be7 9. Qg4 O-O

Black sacrifices the exchange. In case of 9... Kf8 10. Bd3 d6 11. f4 Nd7 12. O-O Nc5 13. f5 or 9... g6 10. Bd3 Nc6 11. Nxc6 bxc6 12. h4 he took the chance of suffering a very strong attack in the presence of a material balance.

10. Bh6 g6 11. Bxf8

Also 11. h4 d612. h5 Qa5 13. Nb5 a6 14. hxg6 fxg6 15. Bxf8 axb5 16. Rxh7!! with a terrible attack upon the black king was proved in the practice more than once, but probably Black was going to defend in some other way, for instance with 11... Qa5.

11... Bxf8 12. Qg3 Qa5 13. Bc4

A new move. 13. f4 d6 14. exd6 Bxd6 15. Rd1 occurred in the game Svidler - A. Rodriguez (Luzern, 1997), 13. Be2 was seen also.

13... Nc6?

After 13... Bg7 14. f4 d6 there would be a fight. But now the game will end very soon.

14. Nxc6 bxc6 15. O-O Bg7 16. Rae1 f6 17. exf6 Bxf6 18. Re3 Qg5 19. Rb1 Qxg3 20. Rxg3 Be5 21. Rf3 Bc7 22. Be2 Kg7 23. Kf1 Bb6 24. c4 Bc5 25. Rfb3 Bd6

Black is forced to play the whole game with a single piece, with his dark-squared bishop.

26. c5 Be5

If 26... Bxc5, then after 27. Rb8 Black loses a piece on top of all his misfortunes.

27. Rd3 a5 28. a4 Kf6 29. Rf3+ Ke7

After 29... Kg7 30. h4 White would also win soon.

30. Bd3 Bd4 31. Rh3 Bxc5 32. Rxh7+ Kf6 33. h4 Bf8 34. g4 g5 35. f4 gxf4 36. g5+ Ke5 37. g6 d5 38. g7 1-0 Black resigned.

Markowski - Krasenkow [A20]

1. g3 e5 2. c4 Nf6 3. Bg2 c6 4. d4 exd4 5. Qxd4 d5 6. Nf3 Be6 7. cxd5

Too simple. 7. Ng5 looked more promising for White.

7... cxd5 8. O-O Nc6 9. Qa4 Bc5 10. Nbd2 O-O 11. Nb3 Bb6 12. Nbd4 Qd7

Only 12... Rc8 was seen previously.

13. Nxe6

Reinforcing Black’s position in the centre. There was no 13. Be3?? because of 13... Nxd4, but 13. Nxc6 was preferable.

13... fxe6 14. Rd1?!

A strange move, all the more that the white rook will come back nearly at once. 14. Qh4 e5 15. Bh3 was stronger.

14... e5 15. e3 Qf5 16. Rf1 Rad8 17. Bd2 Ne4

18. Rad1?

The square d1 should have been left free for the white queen.

18... Qh5!

Black gains a practically forced win.

19. Nh4

If 19. Ne1, then 19... Qe2 wins.

19... g5 20. Bxe4 dxe4 21. Ng2 Rd6 22. Bc3

After 22. Qxe4 Rfd8 23. Qc2 e4 24. Qc4+ Qf7 25. Qe2 Ne5 26. Bc3 Nf3+ 27. Kh1 Qh5 28. Qc4+ Kf8 29. h4 Qg4 White would lose as well.

22... Rh6 23. h4 gxh4 24. Qc4+

If 24. Nxh4, then 24... Qg4 25. Ng2 Qh3 26. Nh4 Rxh4 27. gxh4 Kh8 with a victory.

24... Kh8 25. Nxh4 Qg4 26. Qd5 Rxh4 27. Bxe5+ Nxe5 28. Qxe5+ Kg8 29. Rd5 Bxe3 0-1 White resigned.

























 
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