Apr 20, 2001

Round 4

The supertournament does not lessen the speed. All participants are engaged in the struggle. The game between the two hosts - V.Ivanchuk and O.Romanishin continued nearly to the time when only kings were left on the board. In Petrosian variation of Queen's Indian Defense, black has chosen  a solid simplifying move 5...Ne4, but did not manage to equalize the position completely. The well-timed 25.Nd5! emphasized the positional advantage of white. Soon black had to give a pawn away. Probably, Ivanchuk did not utilize chances at his best before the time control, and allowed black to activate his pieces. For instance, the following was worth attention: 35.Qc2!? and black cannot play 35... Qxd5 because of 36.Rc8+ and white wins. There was an important moment in the game after black's move 43. White had to decide, what  kind of ending to enter - queen or rook. He preferred the queen endgame and did not manage to realize an extra  pawn. White could try the rook ending - 44.Qc3!?. After 44... Qe5+ (if 44... Qf4+ 45.g3 Qc4 46.Qxc4 Rxc4 47.Rd8 Black lost the second pawn) 45.Qxe5 fxe5 and now 46.b7!? zugzwang, and white could grab e5 pawn. In such case, the final result would depend on the possibility to make the second passed pawn at h-file. It seems there are no obstacles for realizing this plan. In the game A.Beliavsky - V.Korchnoi, the popular Nimzo-Indian Defense. On move 8, white has chosen a rare move 8.Qf3. In return, black played 10... c5, actually sacrificing a piece.  Beliavsky declined the Greek gift. If white would play 11.b4? (instead of 11.d5 how it was played in the game), then after 11... cxb4 12.axb4 Nxc4! 13.Bxc4 Rc8 he could experience big troubles. As a result, the game went into the double-edged ending which looked like slightly better for white due to black's weak pawn structure on the kingside. But, Beliavsky did not manage to fixate the pawns and black managed to capture the initiative and won a pawn. It was rather hard to realize this advantage, and black preferred to agree to a draw. B.Gelfand - M.Krasenkow: an interesting battle, with some mistakes, the luck was on Krasenkow's side. This victory made it possible for him to take the lead after round 4.

Gelfand, B - Krasenkow, M. [D30] 

1. Nf3 d5 2. d4 c6 3. c4 e6 4. Qc2 

Black threatens to capture c4 pawn, and if 4. e3, M.Krasenkow uses to play 4... f5, as he played with Bareev.

  4... dxc4 

In case of 4... Nf6, it is most likely that white would transfer the game to Semi-Slav Defense by 5. e3. After the move in the game, white queen becomes the object of attack for black pawns on the queenside.

5.Qxc4 Nf6 6. Bg5 b5 7. Qc2 Bb7 8. e3 

It is also played 8.e4 here, which is more aggressive.

8... Nbd7 9. Bd3 a6 10. a4 

A new move. Commonly played 10. Qe2 does make any problems for black after 10... c5.

10... Bb4+ 11. Nc3 

If 11. Nbd2 black would most likely play in the same way - 11... c5. Global exchanges after 12. axb5 axb5 13. Rxa8 Qxa8 14. Bxf6 gxf6 15. Bxb5 Bxf3 16. Bxd7+ Kxd7 17. gxf3 Qa1+ 18. Qd1 Bxd2+ ( if 18... Qxb2 19.Qa4+ perpetual) 19. Kxd2 Qxb2+ 20. Qc2 resulted in equalizing.

11... c5 12. Bxf6 

If immediate 12. dxc5, black may play 12... Nxc5 threatening d3 bishop. 

12... Nxf6?! 

A risky move. After 12... gxf6 13. Be4 (it is not possible to grab a pawn 13. axb5 axb5 14. Rxa8 Qxa8 15. Bxb5? because of 15... Qa1+ 16. Qd1 Qxb2 and white may resign) 13... Bxe4 14. Qxe4 cxd4 15. Qxd4 the position was still kind of equal.

13. dxc5 O-O 

It's not possible to play 13... Bxc5 because of 14. axb5 and white has an extra pawn.

14. axb5 axb5 15. O-O Bxf3 16. gxf3 Rc8 

17. Nxb5?!

White misses an attractive opportunity 17. Rfd1!. After 17... Qe7 (if 17... Qc7, then just 18. Nxb5) white has 18. c6 and if 18... Rxc6 then there is an unpleasant surprise for black - 19. Nd5.

17... Rxc5 18. Qe2 

White should be cautious despite of an extra pawn. For instance, after 18. Nc3 Black develop the initiative by 18... Qc7 19.Rfc1 Rg5+ 20. Kh1 Rh5 21. f4 Ng4.

18... Rh5 19. f4 

19... e5!

Black sacrifices the second pawn and unexpectedly develop a strong initiative on the kingside, utilizing white's weak pawn structure.

20. fxe5? 

White decides to test the plan of the opponent. It was worth to switch a1 rook to the game. After 20. Ra4! exf4 (if 20... Bc5 then it is possible to play 21. fxe5 and g4 square is protected by a rook from a4 ) 21.Rxb4 f3 22. Qxf3 Qxd3  white should resist the attack.

20... Ng4!

This is the point of black. Now the game is forced.

21. f4 

It is not possible to play 21. Qxg4 because of 21... Rg5 and white loses his queen.

21... Qh4 22. Nd4 Nxh2 23. Nf5 Nf3+!

A simple, but nice blow. White has to give away an exchange in order to escape the checkmate.

24. Rxf3 Qh1+ 25. Kf2 Qxa1 26. Rg3 Be1+ 27. Kg2 Rxf5 

Of course, not 27... Bxg3?? because of 28. Ne7+ Kh8 29.Qxh5 and white wins.

28. Rh3?! 

A strange move. After 28.Bxf5 Bxg3 29. Kxg3 black would have to work hard to realize the material advantage. The point is that after the only possible 29... Rb8 30. e6 Rxb2 white has 31. e7! and black should not win. Probably, the best way of realization was 29... g6!? 30. Bd7 Rb8 and if 31. e6 then 31... Qg1+! 32. Kh4 ( if 32. Kf3, then black plays 32... f5 and after 33. e7 the following wins: 33... Qg4+ 34. Kf2 Qh4+ 35. Kg1 Qxe7) 32... Kf8 33. exf7 Rb3 and the open position of white king will be most likely punished.

28... Rb8 ??

An awful move. Black manages to make a lost position from the completely winning one. After a simple 28... Rd8 white may resign. If 29. Bxf5, 29... Rd2 decides the game.

29. Bxf5 Rxb2 30. Bxh7+ Kf8 31. Bc2 g6 

In case of 31... Qc1, white plays 32. Rh8+ Ke7 33. Rc8. 

32. Qc4 Qa8+ 

33. Kf1?

A return gift. After 33. Kg1 black cannot escape. This is not because white has an extra pawn, but because the position of black king is unsafe. There is the threat 34.Rh8+ and it is hard to find defense. For instance: 33... Kg7 (if 33... Qa1, then there is a forced win: 34. Qc8+ Ke7 35. Qc7+ Kf8 36. Qd8+ Kg7 37.Qf6+, and if 33... Qa7 then 34.e6 looks very strong )  34. e6 and now after 34... Qd8 there is a simple 35. e7 Qxe7 36. Qd4+ Qf6 37. Rh7+ and white wins the queen.

33... Bh4! 

Surely, white did not see this move. By tactics, black do not let white rook to h8 square.

34. Qe4?

White finds himself at a loss. It was not possible to play 34. Rxh4? because of  34... Qf3+ 35. Ke1(g1)  Qg3+ and black captures h4 rook. But there was a defense 34. Qd3 with the idea - if 34... Qa1+ then 35. Qd1. 

34... Qa1+ 35.Kg2 

35. Ke2 changes nothing because of 35... Qc1 36. Rxh4 Rxc2+. 

35... Qc1 36. Rxh4 Rxc2+ 37. Kh3 Qf1+ White resigned

"Chess is so interesting in itself, as not to need the view of gain to induce engaging in it;and thence it is never played for money."

Benjamin Franklin, "Chess made easy", 1802

"It is one of the insights of modern players, and especially of the best ones, that one has toplay the position itself, not some abstract idea of the position."

John Watson, "Secrets of Modern Chess Strategy", 1998

Back to Top | Home Page
© 2000 GMChess. All rights reserved.
About | Our Policies | E-Mail | Site Map