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Baku FIDE Grand Prix 2014 (3)

Boris Gelfand leads after beating Grischuk on time in Baku Grand Prix Round 3

Gelfand and Grischuk in a rook and pawn ending and time pressure. Photo ©

Gelfand and Grischuk in a rook and pawn ending and time pressure. Photo © |

Boris Gelfand has the sole lead in the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku after three of the eleven rounds with 2.5/3. Gelfand and Grischuk were the last to finish their game which was reduced to a rook ending where neither had enough time to play it accurately. Grischuk blundered with 55.Rg7 with 55 seconds to go to make it move 60, he must have sensed something wrong because 56.Rf7 took him down to 12 seconds, Gelfand, also with very little time missed the winning 57.c5 after which it was a scramble to the time control. Grischuk had two seconds showing for his final move but his flag dropped in an equal position for the loss.

Fabiano Caruana had a huge advantage against Hikaru Nakamura but he started to go astray and allowed his opponent to escape with a draw.

Sergey Karjakin was the only other winner of the day when he took advantage of Leinier Dominguez Perez' time pressure to cause a total collapse of his position just before first time control.

Peter Svidler surprised Teimour Radjabov taking an English into a Sicilian structure and an unsure Radjabov allowed 6...d5 and after 11 moves it was already obvious the game would be drawn.

Evgeny Tomashevsky couldn't land a killer blow against Rustam Kasimdzhanov's Gruenfeld in spite of having a threatening looking position and the game was drawn.

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov was somewhat surprised by 6...Nbd7 by Dmitry Andreikin in the Semi-Slav and never seemed fully comfortable after that and the game drifted to a draw.

Round 3 Standings: 1 Gelfand 2.5pts 2-4 Caruana, Svidler, Nakamura 2pts 5-8 Radjabov, Kasimdzhanov, Tomashevsky, Karjakin 1.5pts 9-11 Grischuk, Dominguez Perez, Mamedyarov 1pt 12 Andreikin 0.5pts

Round 4 Pairings Sunday 5th Oct 11am BST: Kasimdzhanov-Svidler, Andreikin-Radjabov, Caruana-Mamedyarov, Grischuk-Nakamura, Dominguez-Gelfand, Tomashevsky-Karjakin.

Baku Grand Prix Round 3 in detail

Boris Gelfand won a tough game against Alexander Grischuk where again he put pressure on his opponent by a slightly unusual variation of the Queen's Indian.

Karjakin vs Grischuk

Grischuk just after losing on time. Photo ©

Grischuk was under pressure for much of the game and the game finished in a rook and pawn ending where both players had only a few minutes to reach move 60. 55...Rg7? was a mistake from Grischuk, 56....Rf7 using most of his remaining time was probably a consequence of that. Gelfand who had his own clock troubles missed the only winning move 57.c5! (there was no time for either to work anything real out) and then with 6 seconds to go the position was drawn but Grischuk couldn't make the two moves he needed to get there. A mixture of clock and board made this a difficult game for both but a loss on time in an equal position must have been hard for Grischuk to take.

Karjakin vs Grischuk

Grischuk down to zero. Gelfand got his 15 minutes and 30 seconds. Made time control with 5 seconds to spare. Photo ©

Gelfand,Boris - Grischuk,Alexander [E17]
Baku FIDE Grand Prix 2014 Baku AZE (3.1), 04.10.2014

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Bb7 5.Bg2 Be7 6.0-0 0-0 7.Re1 Na6 8.Nc3 Ne4 9.Bf4

Alexander Grischuk


Boris Gelfand

Position after 9.Bf4

r2q1rk1/pbppbppp/np2p3/8/2PPnB2/2N2NP1/PP2PPBP/R2QR1K1 b - - 0 9

"A playable move." Gelfand.

9...d6 10.Qc2

"Asks what black is doing." Gelfand.

10...Nb4 11.Qb3 Nxc3 12.Qxc3 c5 13.e4 Nc6

[13...g5 14.Be3 g4 15.Nd2 cxd4 16.Bxd4 Nc6]

14.d5 Bf6 15.Qd2

[15.dxc6 Bxc3 16.cxb7 Bxe1 17.bxa8Q Bxf2+! 18.Kxf2 Qxa8 19.Bxd6 Rd8 (19...Qxe4 20.Re1 Qxc4) 20.e5 Qe4]

15...Nd4 16.Nxd4 Bxd4 17.e5 dxe5

Alexander Grischuk


Boris Gelfand

Position after 17.dxe5

r2q1rk1/pb3ppp/1p2p3/2pPp3/2Pb1B2/6P1/PP1Q1PBP/R3R1K1 w - - 0 18

[17...f6 18.dxe6 Bxg2 19.exd6!; 17...Bxe5 18.Bxe5 dxe5 19.Rxe5 Qd6 20.Rae1]

18.Bxe5 Bxe5 19.Rxe5 exd5 20.Rae1 Qd6 21.Re7 Bc6 22.Bxd5 Rad8

[22...Bxd5 23.Qxd5 Qxd5 24.cxd5 Rad8 (24...Rfd8 25.d6 Kf8 26.d7 b5 27.R1e3 a5 28.b3 g5 29.Kf1 h6 30.Ke2 is much better for white if not just winning.) 25.Rd1 Rd6 26.Rxa7 Rfd8 27.a4 Kf8]

23.Rxa7 Bxd5 24.Qxd5 Qxd5 25.cxd5 Rxd5 26.Rb7 Rd6 27.Re3 g6 28.Rb3 c4 29.R3xb6 Rxb6 30.Rxb6 Ra8 31.a3 c3 32.bxc3 Rxa3 33.Rc6

Alexander Grischuk


Boris Gelfand

Position after 33.Rc6

6k1/5p1p/2R3p1/8/8/r1P3P1/5P1P/6K1 b - - 0 33

Now Gelfand has a risk free extra pawn in the ending.

33...h5 34.h4 Kf8 35.Kg2 Ke7 36.Kf3 Ra2 37.Ke3 Rc2 38.Rc4 Kf8 39.f3 Ke7 40.Kf4 Rf2 41.Re4+ Kd6 42.Re3 f6 43.Ke4 Ra2

[43...g5 was a move Gelfand wasn't sure about.]

44.Rd3+ Ke6 45.c4 Rc2 46.Kd4 Kd6 47.f4 Rc1 48.Rf3 Rd1+ 49.Kc3 Rb1 50.f5 gxf5 51.Rxf5 Ke6

Alexander Grischuk


Boris Gelfand

Position after 51...Ke6

8/8/4kp2/5R1p/2P4P/2K3P1/8/1r6 w - - 0 52



It's not clear that Gelfand has a win anymore with best play but both players were getting awfully short of time.

[52.Rf3 "may be the simplest" - Grischuk 52...Rb8 53.c5]

52...Rg1 53.Rh8 Rxg3+ 54.Kb4 f5 55.h5

[55.c5 f4 56.Rf8 Ke5 57.Re8+ Kf5 58.c6 Rg7 59.Kc5 Rh7 60.Rb8 Kg4 61.Rb7]



56.h6 Rf7

Alexander Grischuk


Boris Gelfand

Position after 56...Rf7

7R/5r2/4k2P/5p2/1KP5/8/8/8 w - - 0 57

Grischuk only had 12 seconds after this down from 55.

[56...Rb7+ it seems doesn't hold either.]


Gelfand too only just made it to time control.

[57.c5! is the only winning move but Gelfand was awfully short of time too.]

57...Kf6 58.Re1 f4

It's quite hard to believe with 6 seconds showing on his clock Grischuk didn't manage to make two more moves. It was however more like 5 seconds.

59.Kc5 f3 60.Kd6 Kg6

Grischuk's flag fell in the act of making this move. The position is equal.


Hikaru Nakamura was very critical of his own play against Fabiano Caruana particularly copping out. "I should be a man and just castle. If I lose I lose." Nakamura. Later however Caruana, who wasn't as convinced of the size of advantage couldn't find a final blow and went completely wrong eventually. The game finished in a draw.

Caruana [on his 36...Ng2 v Nakamura]: "[It was] was a terrible move. The rest I could live with."

I'm not really looking at ratings. All the players here are very strong and we play more or less on equal terms. So far I haven't managed but I try to play decent chess and These first three games have been pretty low quality I think, many mistakes. But hopefully I can improve for the rest of the tournament.

Nakamura,Hikaru - Caruana,Fabiano [D31]
Baku FIDE Grand Prix 2014 Baku AZE (3.3), 04.10.2014

1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Be7 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Bf4 c6 6.e3 Bf5 7.g4 Be6 8.h4 Nd7 9.Bg3 Nb6 10.f3 Bd6 11.Bxd6 Qxd6 12.Qc2 h5 13.g5 Ne7 14.Bd3 0-0 15.Nge2

Fabiano Caruana


Hikaru Nakamura

Position after 15.Nge2

r4rk1/pp2npp1/1npqb3/3p2Pp/3P3P/2NBPP2/PPQ1N3/R3K2R b KQ - 0 15

What I did in the game was ridiculous.

[15.Qh2 Nakamura. 15...Qb4 Caruana]

15...Rac8 16.Rd1

I should be a man and just castle. If I lose I lose. Nakamura.

16...g6 17.Kf2

I can't find an idea here. Nakamura.

17...a6 18.b4 Bf5 19.Bxf5 Nxf5 20.e4 Ng7 21.Qb3



Fabiano Caruana


Hikaru Nakamura

Position after 21.,,Nc4

2r2rk1/1p3pn1/p1pq2p1/3p2Pp/1PnPP2P/1QN2P2/P3NK2/3R3R w - - 0 22

"I realised positionally I can just about resign here." Nakamura.

22.e5 Qe6

Kind of pointless according to Caruana.


23.Nf4 Qe7 24.Ne4

This seems very bad but Nakamura was already disenchanted with his position.

24...dxe4 25.Qxc4 Ne6 26.Ne2 exf3 27.Ng3 a5

"I completely missed a5 for some reason." Nakamura.

28.a3 axb4 29.axb4 Ra8 30.Ne4 Ra3 31.Rd2 Nf4 32.Rb1 Kg7 33.Rb3

Fabiano Caruana


Hikaru Nakamura

Position after 33.Rb3

5r2/1p2qpk1/2p3p1/4P1Pp/1PQPNn1P/rR3p2/3R1K2/8 b - - 0 33


[33...Nh3+! I didn't realise I could play Nh3 and f2. 34.Kg3 b5 35.Qc2 Qe6]

34.Nf6 Ra2 35.Rxa2 Rxa2+ 36.Kxf3 Ng2?

Fabiano Caruana


Hikaru Nakamura

Position after 36.Ng2

8/1p2qpk1/2p2Np1/4P1Pp/1PQP3P/1R3K2/r5n1/8 w - - 0 37

After this the computers think the game is equal. Caruana said he can live with his mistakes in the game but hot this one which was a result of a miscalculation.


37.Kg3 Ne1 38.Re3 Nc2 39.Qxa2 Nxe3 40.Qa8 Qf8 41.Qxb7 Nf5+ 42.Kh3 Nxd4 43.Qd7 Qxb4 44.Qd8 Qc3+ 45.Kg2 Qd2+ 46.Kh3 Qd3+ 47.Kg2 Qf3+ 48.Kh2 Qf2+ 49.Kh3 Qf1+ 50.Kh2 Qf2+ 1/2-1/2

Sergey Karjakin was completely taken by surprise in the opening by Leinier Dominguez Perez and so went for a very solid setup. This actually gave him advantage but then he let some of that go with 21.h4. However his later 31.c4! created complications (although it was perfectly sound too) which led to Leinier Dominguez to completely collapse and lose.

Karjakin,Sergey - Dominguez Perez,Leinier [A07]
Baku FIDE Grand Prix 2014 Baku AZE (3.6), 04.10.2014

1.Nf3 d5 2.g3 g6

Taking Karjakin by surprise.

3.Bg2 Bg7 4.d4 Nf6 5.0-0 0-0 6.c3 c6

"I didn't see the point in going to some main lines which I'm sure he knows very well anyway. Not very ambitious of course." Karjakin.

7.Nbd2 Bf5 8.Nh4 Be6 9.Qc2 Nbd7 10.f4 Bg4 11.Re1 e6 12.e4 Nxe4 13.Nxe4 dxe4 14.Qxe4 Bf6 15.Nf3 Bxf3 16.Qxf3


16...Qa5 17.Be3 Nb6 18.Bf2 Rad8 19.g4 Nc4 20.Re2 Nd6

Dominguez thought he was worse out of the opening.


Leinier Dominguez Perez


Sergey Karjakin

Position after 21.h4

3r1rk1/pp3p1p/2pnpbp1/q7/3P1PPP/2P2Q2/PP2RBB1/R5K1 b - - 0 21

"I was very much surprised by the move 21.h4, it gives me at least some play with h5 and to get this f5 square." Dominguez.

21...h5 22.gxh5 Qxh5 23.Qxh5 gxh5 24.Kh2 Kg7 25.Bf3 Rh8 26.a4 Kf8 27.a5 a6 28.Kh3 Nf5 29.Rd1 Rd7 30.b4 Kg7

This perhaps wasn't the best here.



Leinier Dominguez Perez


Sergey Karjakin

Position after 31.c4

7r/1p1r1pk1/p1p1pb2/P4n1p/1PPP1P1P/5B1K/4RB2/3R4 b - - 0 31

Karjakin decides to open the position as Dominguez was already short of time. "Of course it should be good for black but he has to find some precise moves and in a practical game that's not so easy." Karjakin


This pawn grab is the start of all black's troubles. White is at least equal here and Karjakin thought the game should finish in a draw with best play.

[31...Be7!?=; 31...Kh6 Dominguez was at a loss to explain his play in the final moves of this game. 32.Be4 Nxd4 33.Red2 Rhd8 34.Be3 Kg7 35.Bf3 Rd6 36.Rg2+ Kh6 37.c5 R6d7 38.Rgd2=]

32.Red2 Rhd8 33.Bxh5 Kf8

[33...Rd6 was what Karjakin was expecting but "I like my position already."]

34.Bg4 Ke8


35.h5 Nf5?

Leinier Dominguez Perez


Sergey Karjakin

Position after 35.Nf5

3rk3/1p1r1p2/p1p1pb2/P4n1P/1PP2PB1/7K/3R1B2/3R4 w - - 0 36

[35...Nc2 was the move Karjakin was expecting. 36.Rxd7 Rxd7 37.Rxd7 Kxd7 38.h6 and white is certainly much better but it definitely isn't as bad as the game.]

36.Rxd7 Rxd7 37.Rxd7 Kxd7 38.Bxf5 exf5 39.h6 Ke8 40.Bc5 Bh8 41.Kh4

[41.Kh4 f6 (41...Bc3 42.Kg5 Bb2 43.Bd6 Bh8 44.Be5 Bxe5 45.fxe5 Kf8 46.Kxf5 Kg8 47.Kf6 Kh7 48.Kxf7) 42.Bd6 Kf7 43.Kh5 Ke6 44.Bf8 Kf7 45.Bc5 with Zugswang. 45...Ke6 46.Kg6]


Baku FIDE Grand Prix 2014 Baku AZE (AZE), 2-15 x 2014 cat. XXI (2752)
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2
1. Gelfand, Boris g ISR 2748 * ½ . . . . . . 1 . . 1 3060
2. Caruana, Fabiano g ITA 2844 ½ * . ½ . . . 1 . . . . 2 2884
3. Svidler, Peter g RUS 2732 . . * ½ ½ . . . . . 1 . 2 2876
4. Nakamura, Hikaru g USA 2764 . ½ ½ * . . . . . . . 1 2 2891
5. Radjabov, Teimour g AZE 2726 . . ½ . * ½ . . . . ½ . 2734
6. Kasimdzhanov, Rustam g UZB 2706 . . . . ½ * ½ . . ½ . . 2726
7. Tomashevsky, Evgeny g RUS 2701 . . . . . ½ * . ½ ½ . . 2751
8. Karjakin, Sergey g RUS 2767 . 0 . . . . . * ½ 1 . . 2797
9. Grischuk, Alexander g RUS 2797 0 . . . . . ½ ½ * . . . 1 2613
10. Dominguez Perez, Leinier g CUB 2751 . . . . . ½ ½ 0 . * . . 1 2599
11. Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar g AZE 2764 . . 0 . ½ . . . . . * ½ 1 2601
12. Andreikin, Dmitry g RUS 2722 0 . . 0 . . . . . . ½ * ½ 2485
Round 3 (October 4, 2014)
Gelfand, Boris - Grischuk, Alexander 1-0 60 E17 Queens Indian
Nakamura, Hikaru - Caruana, Fabiano ½-½ 50 D31 Semi-Slav Defence
Radjabov, Teimour - Svidler, Peter ½-½ 31 A32 English Symmetrical
Tomashevsky, Evgeny - Kasimdzhanov, Rustam ½-½ 44 D85 Gruenfeld Defence
Karjakin, Sergey - Dominguez Perez, Leinier 1-0 41 A07 Barcza System
Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar - Andreikin, Dmitry ½-½ 36 D45 Anti-Meran Variations

Official Video Coverage of Round 3

Toward the end you can see the Gelfand-Grischuk time scramble. Around about 5hrs 58 minutes in.

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