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39th Dortmund Chess Meeting 2011 (1)

Kramnik takes early lead in Dortmund

Kramnik and Ponomariov in action on the stage in Dortmund. Photo © Georgios Souleidis.

Kramnik and Ponomariov in action on the stage in Dortmund. Photo © Georgios Souleidis. | http://www.sparkassen-chess-meeting.de/2011/home-mainmenu-1.html

Vladimir Kramnik has won Dortmund 9 times before and he got off to an ideal start this year in defeating last years champion Ruslan Ponomariov. The game was a complex King's Indian where Kramnik's play was more than enough for an exchange and when he had to return it Ponomariov didn't manage much resistance. Anish Giri and Hikaru Nakamura drew an interesting struggle and Georg Meier got on the scoreboard with a draw against Le Quang Liem, probably a priority in the first round. Rd2 2pm Friday: Le – Nakamura, Ponomariov– Giri and Meier–Kramnik.

Vladimir Kramnik and Ruslan Ponomariov contested a sharp King's Indian. Ponomariov won / was given the exchange for a pawn but on balance it seems white had the better of the play and a few moves later had to return it after which he went down pretty quickly.

23 year old Dortmund Georg Meier got a draw on his Dortmund debut in the top group against Le Quang Liem in a Gruenfeld. They quickly traded into a drawn rook and pawn ending.

I haven't seen black play all that many Lasker Defences apart from Kramnik in the candidates but it does seem that white is avoiding it all the same and playing 5.Bf4, not that he is getting all that much there either. Thus Anish Giri played Bf4 against the Queen's Gambit and Hikaru Nakamura got what seems to me to be complete equality. However both are fighting players and so it was at this point the game got interesting. On the run up to time control Nakamura's running a-pawn was just enough to draw against Giri's breakthrough towards his king, the game finished in perpetual check.

Note that the organisers are delaying the broadcast of moves by 30 minutes each round to help against possible computer cheating.

39th GM Dortmund (GER), 21-31 vii 2011 cat. XX (2731)
1 2 3 4 5 6
1. Kramnik, Vladimir g RUS 2781 * * . . . . . . . . 1 . 1
2. Nakamura, Hikaru g USA 2770 . . * * ½ . . . . . . . ½ 2701
3. Giri, Anish g NED 2701 . . ½ . * * . . . . . . ½ 2770
4. Le, Quang Liem g VIE 2715 . . . . . . * * ½ . . . ½ 2656
5. Meier, Georg g GER 2656 . . . . . . ½ . * * . . ½ 2715
6. Ponomariov, Ruslan g UKR 2764 0 . . . . . . . . . * * 0
Round 1 (July 21, 2011)
Kramnik, Vladimir - Ponomariov, Ruslan 1-0 42 E94 King's Indian Classical
Giri, Anish - Nakamura, Hikaru ½-½ 54 D37 QGD 5.Bf4
Meier, Georg - Le, Quang Liem ½-½ 38 D81 Gruenfeld Botvinnik

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