FIDE World Chess Championship Candidates London 2013 (10)
Carlsen wins and leads, Aronian, Kramnik also win in London Candidates Round 10
Mark Crowther - Thursday 28th March 2013
Magnus Carlsen at the start of his game vs Gelfand. Photo © Michiel Abeln. | http://www.theweekinchess.com
The FIDE London Candidates tournament can only be won by Magnus Carlsen, Levon Aronian and Vladimir Kramnik after all three won their games in round 10. Magnus Carlsen's win was by far and away the most impressive. He defeated Boris Gelfand for the second time but this was a real fight and probably Magnus' best win of the event so far. Gelfand showed some ambition against Carlsen's Bb5 Sicilian and probably paid the price for that as Carlsen maintained fine control almost throughout. He did miss a final shot from Gelfand but even though it won a piece Carlsen had everything under control.
Vladimir Kramnik won with the Berlin Defence for the first time in a classical game. Even though Kramnik revitalised interest in 2000 in the line he has used it as a drawing weapon. Today Grischuk had in his own words an opening "fiasco" which handed Kramnik a small advantage, it shouldn't have been enough as Grischuk started to play for a draw but then with a minute on his clock, 10 moves to make and visably extremely nervous he exchanged into a completely lost pawn endgame.
Vassily Ivanchuk scored his first win using very classical chess and no time trouble in round 9. The lesson he learned from this was to play the highly risky Budapest Defence and go down to a loss on time against second placed Levon Aronian with 11 moves to make. The opening wasn't that bad (almost equal) but the time he was inevitably going to use to make it work made this a terrible choice. At his press conference Carlsen was asked about the other games. He paused, I think wondering whether to say anything at all and limited himself to "I wasn't sure that the Budapest Gambit was what I wanted to see in that game in general." I think he was probably pretty angry as probably was Kramnik who revealed his irritation at an earlier press conference about the first Ivanchuk vs Aronian game. Ivanchuk is one of the truly great players of all time but I'm afraid this really doesn't excuse this performance from him which was a disgrace and potentially very unfair on Kramnik and Carlsen if he plays properly against them having clearly not done so in either game against Aronian (this isn't about Aronian whom I think deserves a title shot by the way, I've been talking about Ivanchuk's lack of respect for the event and those trying to qualify for several rounds).
Teimour Radjabov had lost his last two games and three of the last four. It finally showed in his play. He played an old main line of the Gruenfeld against reknowned expert Peter Svidler and plainly was hoping for something like the repetition he got. Sometimes a man has just got to stop the bleeding. Radjabov gave an extensive justification in the press conference. It was sad really as he clearly expressed the pain that everyone has had from chess when nothing is going your way. I did not blame him one little bit for doing this today. His confidence was plainly shot. There were quite a few memorable phrases he used but the one I like the best was "I'm not the guy who is here to lose all my games so I thought OK one draw is not so bad." Svidler too had a difficult decision to make, he was highly likely to be worse if he played on and after taking some time he decided to save his energy for the remaining rounds.
Round 10 Standings: Carlsen 7/10, Aronian 6.5, Kramnik 6, Gelfand, Grischuk, Svidler 4.5, Radjabov, Ivanchuk 3.5
Round 11 Thurs March 28 2pm GMT Grischuk-Carlsen, Kramnik-Radjabov, Svidler-Aronian, Ivanchuk-Gelfand.
Magnus Carlsen 1-0 Boris Gelfand
Magnus Carlsen. Photo © Michiel Abeln http://www.theweekinchess.com.
Magnus comments in the press conference.
Q: Today all three leaders won. How do you see your strategy for the last four rounds.
"I don't know, I'm happy to be still leading. I'll just try doing more of the same. I wasn't thrilled that the other two players won their games. There's nothing I can do about that. [Pause] Like from the opening [Pause] lets say that I wasn't sure that the Budapest Gambit was what I wanted to see in that game in general. Again I can only change what I do myself." - Carlsen.
Carlsen,Magnus - Gelfand,Boris [B30]
FIDE Candidates London ENG (10.2), 27.03.2013
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 e6 4.0-0
[4.Bxc6 bxc6 5.b3 d6 6.0-0 Ne7 7.e5 Ng6 8.exd6 Bxd6 9.Nc3 e5 10.Re1 0-0 11.d3 f5 12.Ba3 Be6 13.Na4 Qe7 14.c4 Rad8 15.Qe2 Bc8 16.Qe3 f4 17.Qe4 Kh8 18.Rad1 Bg4 19.Rd2 Bxf3 20.Qxf3 Nh4 21.Qe4 f3 22.g3 Ng2 23.Nc3 Qe6 24.Re3 Nxe3 25.fxe3 f2+ 26.Rxf2 Rxf2 27.Kxf2 Rf8+ 28.Ke2 Qh3 29.Qh1 Be7 30.Ne4 Qg4+ 31.Kd2 Qh3 32.Ke2 h5 33.Bb2 Qg4+ 34.Kd2 Qh3 35.Ke2 Qg4+ 36.Kd2 Qh3 37.Ke2 1/2-1/2 Carlsen,M (2872)-Radjabov,T (2793)/London ENG 2013]
4...Nge7 5.Re1 a6 6.Bf1 d5 7.exd5 Nxd5 8.d4 Nf6 9.Be3 cxd4 10.Nxd4 Bd7 11.c4 Nxd4 12.Bxd4 Bc6
[12...Be7 1-0 Looshnikov,N (2487)-Yuffa,D (2334)/Satka RUS 2012/The Week in Chess 909 (39)]
13.Nc3 Be7 14.a3
"I was not sure if I should go a3 and a5 or not. In general white is slightly better for white but very playable for black." - Carlsen.
"I was happy to take away the a5 square for the queen so black is a little bit more cramped." - Carlsen.
15.Qd3 0-0 16.Rad1 Qc7
"Now if I get in Qg3 I will be doing very well so Qc7 is kind of forced." - Carlsen.
17.Be5 Qb6 18.Qg3 Rfd8 19.Rxd8+
[19.Nd5 Here I wasted some time on Nd5 but it's easily refuted." - Carlsen. 19...exd5 (19...Bxd5? 20.Bc7 Qxb2 21.cxd5 but that wasn't very relevant - Carlsen.) 20.Bd4 Bc5 21.Bxf6 Bxf2+]
"With Qb6 I played for a good game." - Gelfand who said that the problem was that his concept didn't work not that a computer might find a supposedly better variation the following day. The problem is that the way Carlsen played it this didn't work out. In fact this may have been Carlsen's best game so far.
[20...Qf8!? "That's a strange move anyway" - Carlsen. 21.b4 "and I think I'm definitely better." Carlsen. 21...axb4 22.axb4 Nd7 (22...Nh5! Speelman. 23.Qh3 Bxb4 24.Qxh5 f6 25.Qh3 fxe5 26.Bd3 Bxc3 27.Bxh7+ Kf7 28.Qxc3) 23.b5]
21.Bd4 Qb3 22.Rd3 Qc2 23.b4 axb4 24.axb4
"I was quite happy to get this in. It looks a bit dangerous but black but I couldn't get the tactics to work for black." - Carlsen.
Really close to forced.
[25...Ra1 26.Nd1 Rxd1 27.Rxd1 Qxd1 28.Qb8+ Bf8 29.Bc5 h6 30.Qxf8+ Kh7 31.Qd6! "only move but I missed it from far." - Gelfand. f3 is also much better for white. (31.Qxf7 Be4 is winning for black!) ]
26.Qxh5 Bxd4 27.Rxd4 Qxc3 28.Qa5
"Now it's clear we're playing for two results but still a long way to go." - Carlsen.
28...Rf8 29.Qb6 e5 30.Rd1
[30.Rd8 certainly needed to be considered. 30...g6 31.b5 (31.Rxf8+ Kxf8 32.b5 Be4 33.f3 Bf5 34.Qxb7 Qe3+ 35.Kh1 Qe1 "This is just a draw, no it's losing actually. OK now I'm acutally lost." - Carlsen.) ]
[30...h6 Perhaps h6 was actually possible here. - Carlsen. 31.b5 Be4 32.h3 with an advantage for white. 32...Re8 33.c5]
31.b5 Be4 32.Qf6
"This will win the pawn more or less by force." - Carlsen.
[32...Bf5 33.h4 h5 34.Rd5 with a transposition to the game.]
33.h4 Bf5 34.Rd5 Qc1 35.Qxe5 Be6 36.Rd4 Ra8 37.Qe2!
"I think Qe2 is a really good move." Carlsen.
[37...Ra1 38.Rd8+ Kh7 39.Qe5 Qxf1+ 40.Kh2]
"Now it's very, very difficult for black. I cannot see how to defend from here." - Carlsen.
38...Qc3 39.Qe4 Ra1
[39...Rb8 40.b6 (40.Rd4) ; 39...Ra2 40.Qxb7 Qc2 41.Qf3]
40.Rxa1 Qxa1 41.c5 Qc3 42.Qxb7
[42.b6 "Now of course it was more practical to go b6." Carlsen laughing. 42...Qxc5 43.Qxb7 and it's just over. 43...Bd5 44.Qd7 Kg7 45.b7]
"I missed Qe1. Anyway, saw it immediately I made the move but anyway there are no chances for black. Of course I wasn't too happy to have missed it but I wasn't worried." - Carlsen.
[43.Qe7 also won. "Anyway I really wanted to have the queen on f3. Because anyway I'm losing the piece so it made sense to play the most safe way possible." - Carlsen.]
43...Bc4 44.Qf3 Qxf1+ 45.Kh2 Qb1 46.b7 Qb5 47.c6 Bd5 48.Qg3 1-0
Alexander Grischuk vs Vladimir Kramnik
Grischuk-Kramnik press conference. Photo © Michiel Abeln http://www.theweekinchess.com.
Grischuk,Alexander - Kramnik,Vladimir [C67]
FIDE Candidates London ENG (10.1), 27.03.2013
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.0-0 Nxe4 5.d4 Nd6 6.Bxc6 dxc6 7.dxe5 Nf5 8.Qxd8+ Kxd8 9.Nc3 Bd7 10.h3 h6
Kramnik commented that the openings original prepared for his match in London 2000 against Kasparov were doing just fine in this event too. Also that even though he was famous for revitalising the Berlin he hadn't won a single game of Classical Chess (plenty of rapid) in it until today. "Of course Alexander mixed up something and wasn't very well prepared so I had a good position out of the opening just actually making theoretical moves." - Kramnik. "It was an opening fiasco first, complete fiasco. 11.Rd1 probably a novelty?"
[11.b3 Kc8 12.Bb2 b6 13.Rad1 Ne7 14.Rd2 c5 15.Rfd1 Be6 16.Ne2 Ng6 17.h4 Be7 18.h5 Nh4 (18...Nf8 is a newish idea Grischuk remembered over the board and that he should be worse. Kramnik remembered there is an amazing drawing line. 19.Nf4 Bg4 20.Nd5 Bg5 21.Nxg5 hxg5 22.h6 Rxh6 23.f3 Be6 24.Nxb6+ axb6 25.Rd8+ Kb7 26.Rxa8 Kxa8 27.Rd8+ Kb7 28.Rxf8 draw! Kramnik although in the actual game black still went on to win. 28...g4 29.f4 Rh5 30.c4 Rf5 31.Bc1 g5 32.g3 gxf4 33.Bxf4 Rh5 34.Re8 Kc6 35.Re7 Rh8 36.Bg5 Kb7 37.Kg2 Kc8 38.a4 Rg8 39.Bf6 Rd8 40.Kf2 Rd2+ 41.Ke1 Rd3 42.Re8+ Kb7 43.Bd8 Rxg3 44.Re7 Rxb3 45.Rxc7+ Ka6 46.a5 Rd3 0-1 Predke,A (2450)-Aleksandrov,A (2609)/St Petersburg 2011.) 19.Nxh4 Bxh4 20.Nf4 Bg5 21.Nxe6 Bxd2 22.Nxg7 Bg5 23.g3 Rd8 24.Rxd8+ Kxd8 25.Nf5 Kd7 26.f4 Rg8 27.Kf2 Ke6 28.Ne3 Bd8 29.Kf3 f5 30.g4 fxg4+ 31.Nxg4 Bg5 32.Bc1 Rf8 33.Ke4 Bxf4 34.Bxf4 Rf5 35.Nf6 c6 36.Ne8 Rf7 37.Bxh6 Rf2 38.Bf4 Rxc2 39.h6 Rc3 40.Ng7+ Ke7 41.Nf5+ 1-0 Grischuk,A (2712)-Marciano,D (2502)/Drancy FRA 2003]
[12.b3 Ne7 13.Bb2 b6 14.Ne2 Ng6 15.Rd2 Bb4 16.c3 Be7 17.Rad1 Rd8 18.c4 Nf8 19.Nfd4 g6 20.Rd3 c5 21.Nc2 Bc6 22.Nc3 Rxd3 23.Rxd3 Ne6 24.Nd5 Bd8 1/2-1/2 Dominguez,L (2645)-Sasikiran,K (2668)/Calvia ESP 2004/The Week in Chess 521 (59)]
12...a5 13.b3 b6 14.Bb2 Ne7 15.Rd2 c5 16.Ne2 Ng6 17.Rad1 Be6
This position with pawns on a7 and a2 was discussed by Grischuk with Kramnik 10 years ago as they were on the same team (see game reference above).
"Of course it's clear black has absolutely no problems, he's even a little bit better." Kramnik.
18...Be7 19.Nc3 Kb7 20.Nd5 Rad8
[20...Rae8 was what Grischuk expected. "Giving up this d-line, I'm not a big fan of it." - Kramnik. 21.Nxe7 Rxe7; 20...Bg5 21.Nxg5 hxg5 22.f3 Rad8 "Still I believe it's very drawish." - Kramnik.]
21.Nxe7 Rxd2 22.Nxd2 Nxe7 23.Nf1 Kc8 24.f3 g5
[25.Kf2 Ng6 is different to the move before. 26.Ne3 h5]
26.Rxd8+ Kxd8 27.Kf2 Bf5
A trap "I thought that in time trouble it might be annoying." - Kramnik who thought the whole position drawish.
[27...Ng6 28.Nh5 Bf5 29.e6 fxe6 30.Bg7 Bc2 31.Bxh6 Bxb3 32.Bxg5+ which is sharp but most probably dynamically equal.; 27...Kd7 28.Ke3 Nf5+ (28...Bf5 29.Nxf5 (29.Ne4 Bg6 (29...Bh7 in all cases white is now fine.) ) 29...Nxf5+ 30.Ke4) 29.Nxf5 Bxf5 30.Kd2]
28.Nxf5 Nxf5 29.g4
[29.f4 gxf4 30.Kf3 Nd4+ 31.Bxd4 cxd4 32.Ke4 was a line Grischuk looked at and this line seemed to confuse him in the game. "Conceptually white shouldn't even calculate these pawn endings because they're terribly dangerous." - Kramnik]
With a minute left for 10 moves Grischuk blunders fatally. He looked incredibly nervous whilst thinking about this move.
[30.Ke3 Nxb3?! as it only seems to lead black into being worse. (30...Ne6) 31.e6 Ke7 (31...fxe6 32.Bg7) 32.exf7 Kxf7 33.Be5 c6 34.Bc7 b5 35.cxb5 cxb5 36.axb5]
Pawn endings are often a question of accurate counting as here. White loses with the most straightforward of moves from black.
[31.f4 gxf4 32.Kf3 d3 wins.]
31...Kd7 32.Kd3 c5 33.Ke4 Ke6 34.f4 gxf4 35.Kxf4 d3 36.Ke3 Kxe5 37.Kxd3 Kf4 38.Ke2 Kg3 39.Ke3 Kxh3 40.Kf4 Kh4 41.Kf5 Kg3 0-1
Levon Aronian vs Vassily Ivanchuk
Lev Aronian. Photo © Michiel Abeln http://www.theweekinchess.com.
Aronian,Levon - Ivanchuk,Vassily [A52]
FIDE Candidates London ENG (10.3), 27.03.2013
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.Nf3 Nc6 5.Bf4 Bb4+ 6.Nc3 Bxc3+ 7.bxc3 Qe7 8.Qd5 f6 9.exf6 Nxf6 10.Qd3 d6 11.g3 0-0 12.Bg2 Bg4 13.0-0 Rae8 14.Rae1 Kh8 15.Nd4 Ne5
Ivanchuk took 38 minutes for this move which was the first and quick recommendation from Short in the commentary box. The time used already made Aronian favourite to win this game.
16.Bxe5 dxe5 17.Nf5N
[17.Nb3 c5 18.h3 1/2-1/2 Piket,J (2619)-Reinderman,D (2541)/Rotterdam NED 1999]
17...Bxf5 18.Qxf5 Nd7 19.Qe4
[19.Qd3 "Perhaps Qd3 is a better move because I want to lure the knight to c5 but I think my play here was a bit imprecise." - Aronian.]
19...c6 20.Rd1 Nb6
Aronian tried to find a way to encourage Nc5 at some point but the piece belongs here.
After 17 minutes thought.
21...Qc5 22.Qh4 g6
14 minutes left for Ivanchuk, Aronian 1hr 6 minutes. Black has equalised but his clock situation is already dire.
23.Be4 Kg7 24.Kg2
"Generally black should be fine here but he should be cautious." - Aronian.
24...Qxc4 25.Rfd1 Qxa2
"The move I expect because Vassily always tries to play the best move in the position." - Aronian
[25...Rf7; 25...Nd5 When white is slightly better but black should hold the endgame.]
"After g4 I have very good compensation and play for the pawn. I was actually quite happy with my position." - Aronian.
6 minutes Ivanchuk 41 minutes Aronian. Game already over on the clock given the initiative white has.
[26...Qf7 27.Rh3 Kg8; 26...Qc4]
"I have the feeling that after Bf5 I'm already overtaking the advantage with my threats which should work nicely." - Aronian.
[27...Qf7 28.e3 Rxf5 29.gxf5 Qxf5 30.Rd8 g5 31.Qh5 Re7 32.R1d6 Qe4+ 33.Kh3 Qh4+ 34.Qxh4 gxh4]
1m 46 seconds left.
Officially zero seconds left but maybe a fraction of a second meant the flag hadn't officially fallen.
Teimour Radjabov vs Peter Svidler
Teimour Radjabov. Photo © Michiel Abeln http://www.theweekinchess.com.
Teimour Radjabov lengthy extract from his comments. Shows that his losses have had a pretty bad effect on him.
Q: Does this show you are not so ambitious anymore.
"OK considering my amazing score with white in this tournament I was thinking if Peter will play for a win I will play also for a win because there will be no other chance, in such a situation unfortunately with my amazing performance with white in few previous games I decided that draw with white is a very nice result. If there are other people who want to create a fight then it's another story. "
"I'm not the guy who is here to lose all my games so I thought OK one draw is not so bad."
"It's only because of the results in the previous games because I thought I was creating very nice fight and everything but very nice only for my opponents at the end of the day. There were times in my life I was very unsatisfied and once I made something like 11 draws out of 13 rounds in some tournament, I think European Championship, it was like 11 draws out of 13 games in which I sacrificed pawns, pieces, everything, against Naiditsch I sacrificed the bishop, I was playing the Sicilian Sozin variation with Bc4. I went really ambitious in all the games and . Against Levon there it was a fantastic fight it's OK, I made 11 draws and I was unsatisfied because I thought how is that possible? I'm trying my best and all the time it gets to draw. Now this time somehow after losing so many games I thought back to 2006 and Italy or something a draw is an amazing result sometimes. I mean you have to be satisfied, today I saw that draw was good and especially considering I couldn't catch Peter in the preparation so I thought that if I'm not anywhere in my preparation I will just let him play for a win."
Will he play for a win with black?
"In general I will see how I feel, I think my feelings were awful after these two losses against Gelfand, without play in fact, I almost didn't play the game, I mean I was caught by preparation with a very unpleasant position out of the opening and against Ivanchuk it's the only game where I played the game in fact, I mean out of the games I lost, I played normally but OK he outplayed me in general, he was really precise until the end of the games. I could defend somewhere, I mentioned some moves that could lead to a draw in my game, maybe I shouldn't have exchanged the knight and afterwards h5-h4 was good it would be a draw but it was very hard during the game and he was really playing good chess and I think it's the only game where I really got beaten by real play that my opponent showed in this tournament. Of course I respect Peters win against me...."
Radjabov,Teimour - Svidler,Peter [D85]
FIDE Candidates London ENG (10.4), 27.03.2013
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Nf3 c5 8.Rb1 0-0 9.Be2 cxd4 10.cxd4 Qa5+ 11.Bd2 Qxa2 12.0-0 Bg4 13.Bg5 h6 14.Be3 Nc6 15.d5 Na5 16.Re1 b6 17.Nd4 Bd7
[17...Bxe2 18.Rxe2 Qc4 19.Rc2 Qa6 20.Rc7 Rac8 21.Rxe7 Nc4 22.Nc6 Nxe3 23.fxe3 Qa3 24.Rxa7 Qxe3+ 25.Kh1 Rce8 26.d6 Qxe4 27.Rc1 Re6 28.d7 Rxc6 29.Rxc6 Qxc6 30.d8Q Rxd8 31.Qxd8+ Bf8 32.Qd1 Bc5 33.Qf1 Qd5 34.Ra1 Kg7 35.Rd1 Qe5 36.Rd7 Qf6 37.Qxf6+ Kxf6 38.g4 Ke6 1/2-1/2 Iskusnyh,S (2457)-Zablotsky,S (2540)/Tomsk RUS 2009/The Week in Chess 774]
Now white just repeats.
18...Qb2 19.Rb1 Qa2 20.Ra1 Qb2 21.Rb1
[21...Qa3 is a way to continue but these positions all look better for white.]
|FIDE Candidates London (ENG), 15 iii-1 iv 2013||cat. XXII (2787)|
|Round 10 (March 27, 2013)|
|Carlsen, Magnus||- Gelfand, Boris||1-0||48||B30||Sicilian Rossolimo|
|Aronian, Levon||- Ivanchuk, Vassily||1-0||30||A52||Budapest Defence Main Line|
|Grischuk, Alexander||- Kramnik, Vladimir||0-1||41||C67||Ruy Lopez Berlin|
|Radjabov, Teimour||- Svidler, Peter||½-½||21||D85||Gruenfeld Defence|
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