FIDE World Chess Championship Candidates London 2013 (5)
Four draws in London Candidates Round 5 in day of narrow escapes
Mark Crowther - Thursday 21st March 2013
Vladimir Kramnik will be disappointed not to get right into contention by beating one of the leaders Levon Aronian. Photo © Ray Morris-Hill. | http://raymorris-hill.smugmug.com
The FIDE World Chess Championship Candidates saw its most exciting day's play in Round 5 yet but by some miracle as Kramnik put it all the games were drawn. Indeed the whole standings could have been radically changed with leaders Carlsen and especially Aronian in real danger and with Svidler having a near decisive advantage against Gelfand. If play continues like this we could see a huge percentage of decisive games later on as people get tired. Levon Aronian said that he was happy with the result of his opening against Vladimir Kramnik who himself thought he had a nearly decisive advantage. Later Kramnik was extremely close to a win as Aronian got very short of time. 24.Rxc8 and 41.d8=Q look like the two best opportunities Kramnik missed but the way things went Aronian also looked in desperate trouble but he just managed to hang on. Magnus Carlsen has a huge +6 record against Vassily Ivanchuk and probably felt obliged to try and force a point out of him too given his poor start. Carlsen tried to complicate and did indeed put Ivanchuk into mild time pressure. However he was much worse, probably not quite losing at one point. Ivanchuk was in time pressure and offered a draw on move 31, Carlsen seeing it as a sign of weakness (and also still not quite realising how much worse he was) turned it down but immediately was put under pressure and had to be very accurate to secure a draw he could have had by accepting. Peter Svidler achieved an overwhelming position after just 15 moves against Boris Gelfand. Svidler a well known expert on the black side of the Gruenfeld was faced by this opening. He came up with the radical 7.f4!? and was rewarded with Gelfand playing the terrible 8...Bg4? and 10...c6? after which Svidler had almost too many ways to continue to a big advantage. One of Svidler's great skills is his ability to keep the strong moves coming at a good pace but he almost seemed thrown by the strength of his position spending half an hour on 15.g4 a move he could have played straight away and more time on 18.d5?! when his intended 18.Be3 was far stronger. The position then spiraled out of control with Gelfand briefly getting an advantage but not necessarily a decisive one. In the end Gelfand offered a draw in a level position which was accepted. Big miss for Svidler who said "In a tournament like this I'm very unlikely to get a position like this again." In the final game to finish Alexander Grischuk had a big positional advantage against Teimour Radjabov but things turned round to an extent after Rajdabov found a piece sacrifice for running pawns. Grischuk was not lost but certainly under pressure and he had to be careful to secure his draw. Round 5 Standings: Aronian, Carlsen 3.5pts/5, Svidler 3pts, Kramnik, Radjabov 2.5pts Grischuk 2pts, Ivanchuk, Gelfand 1.5pts. Round 6 Pairings Thurs 21st March 2013 2pm GMT: Svidler-Carlsen, Kramnik-Ivanchuk, Grischuk-Gelfand, Radjabov-Aronian
Gelfand draw Svidler
Svidler-Gelfand. Photo © Ray Morris-Hill http://raymorris-hill.smugmug.com/.
Svidler,Peter - Gelfand,Boris [D85]
FIDE Candidates London ENG (5.2), 20.03.2013
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.Bd2 Nb6 6.e3 Bg7 7.f4!?
"Obviously this is not going to be refuting the Gruenfeld. It looks incredibly ugly and that was one of the reasons for playing it that Boris might decide he has to play for the advantage now." - Svidler.
[7.Nf3 0-1 Nesic,D (2126)-Kojovic,D (2367)/Kraljevo SRB 2011/The Week in Chess 882 (80)]
7...0-0 8.Nf3 Bg4?!
"Then I got very, very lucky because Bg4 is not the way to procede here." - Svidler. "Probably I didn't play the opening so badly in my career. The whole 8...Bg4 is a disaster." - Gelfand.
9.h3 Bxf3 10.Qxf3 c6?
[10...N8d7 11.a4 "Ok it's better than the game." - Gelfand. 11...c5 12.a5 cxd4 13.exd4 Nc8 14.a6 Nd6 15.axb7 Rb8 "If black manages to destroy my structure in the centre I'm not going to be enjoying life very much." - Svidler.]
"I thought this is a dream position and I think it actually is." - Svidler.
11...N8d7 12.h5 e6
"Reasonable." - Svidler.
[12...Nf6 13.hxg6 hxg6 14.f5 "is very strong." Svidler.]
13.hxg6 hxg6 14.e4!?
"I think should be a very decent move." - Svidler. White has so many good looking options here.
[14.Ne4; 14.g4 Qe7 15.g5 Rfd8; 14.0-0-0 The computer recommendation actually looks the most natural too. 14...f5 15.g4 Qf6]
Forced otherwise white will follow up with f5 himself.
"Where it started to go wrong was when I spent almost half an hour on g2-g4 when frankly you should just make this move and continue and then when I needed to think I had to pay attention to the clock." - Svidler.
[15.e5 "I'm obviously better after 15.e5" 15...Kf7 16.0-0-0 Rh8 17.Rg1 "I have a huge advantage here... but it will take a very long time. [to win]" - Svidler. 17...Nd5]
15...Nf6 16.gxf5 exf5?!
Not least because this seems to give white the extra and stronger option of playing e5 as well as exf5.
[16...gxf5 "All the time I spent was on gxf5" - Svidler. 17.exf5 exf5 18.0-0-0 Qxd4 19.Bd3 "I'm probably winning after Bd3. It's very important not to touch the d2 bishop, it stands very well on d2." - Svidler. 19...Ne4 20.Qh3 according to Svidler is tremendous for white although it doesn't seem so very clear. 20...Nf2 21.Qh7+ Kf7 22.Qh5+ Kg8 23.Bxf5 Rxf5 24.Qh7+ Kf7 25.Qxf5+ Qf6]
Probably the only move to continue.
"Svidler started telling himself this [Be3] is too slow I should be looking for something more forceful. I started second guessing myself and this is what happens sometimes with me. And also I missed a very strong resource."
[18.Be3! was Svidler's initial idea and he really should have stuck with it. 18...Kf7? (18...Qe7 19.0-0-0 would probably be the way the game would go but white has a huge position here also.) 19.0-0-0 Rh8 20.Rxh8! (20.Rg1 Rh2) 20...Qxh8 21.d5 "When I played g4 precisely this position was what I was going to do, I will not be surprised if it's just mathematically winning." - Svidler. 21...Nxe3 22.Qxe3 cxd5 23.e6+! is crushing for white.]
18...cxd5 19.0-0-0 d4!
[19...Rc8 20.Kb1 was automatically included in Svidler's calculations but Gelfand finds a better way round it.]
20.Nb5 Qd5! 21.Qh3
It's all started to go wrong for Svidler although he's still better here the position is spiraling out of control.
[21.Qxd5+ Nxd5 22.Bc4 Rac8 is completely equal. 23.b3 a6 24.Kb1 Rxc4 25.bxc4 Nde3 26.Nd6 Nf2 27.Bxe3 dxe3 28.Kc2 Nxh1 29.Rxh1 g5 30.e6 Bf6]
"By this point I started missing simplish stuff." - Svidler.
[21...Nf2 22.Qh7+ Kf7 23.Nd6+ (23.Rg1 Qc6+ 24.Bc4+ Nxc4 25.Nxd4 Rh8 26.e6+ Qxe6 27.Qxg7+ Kxg7 28.Nxe6+ Kf7 29.Ng5+ Kg8 seems to be a forcing line which is better for black.) 23...Qxd6 24.exd6 Rh8 was a possibility considered by Gelfand but not Svidler. 25.Qxh8 Bxh8]
22.Kb1 Rc6 23.e6?!
[23.Nd6 "There's nothing wrong with Nd6. For a brief period of time I went slightly insane." Svidler. 23...Rxd6 24.exd6 Nf2 25.Qh7+ (25.Bg2 Svidler 25...Nxh3 26.Bxd5+ Nxd5 27.Rxh3 Rd8 with equality.) 25...Kf8 26.Qxg6 Qf7 27.Qxf7+ Kxf7 28.Bg2 Rb8 29.b3 Nxh1 30.Bxh1; 23.Rc1 was the computer suggestion and may well be best.]
[24.Re1 was Svidler's initial intention but he saw this was refuted, by: 24...Ne3]]
24...Nf2 25.Qh7+ Kf7 26.Rde1 Qf6 27.Bxc6 bxc6
[27...Nxh1 28.Bb4! Rh8 29.Nd6+ Kf8 (29...Qxd6 30.Be8+! Rxe8 31.Rxe8 Qxb4 32.Qg8+ Kf6 33.Re6#) 30.Re8#]
Otherwise white is just lost. "I'm very lucky I have Nc7." Svidler.
[28.Bb4 cxb5 stops Svidler's attack.]
[28...Ne4 29.Nxa8? (29.Rxe4 fxe4 30.Nxa8=) 29...Nxd2+ 30.Kc2 d3+ 31.Kxd2 Nc4+]
[29.Re6 Houdini says equal but Svidler didn't like it very much. 29...Rxh7 Svidler. (29...Nxh1 30.Rxf6+ Kxf6 31.Ne8+ Rxe8 32.Qxh1 Re4 with probable equality.) 30.Rxf6+ Bxf6 31.Rxh7+ Kg8 32.Rh6 d3 and white lacks coordination.]
29...Bxh8 30.Ne8 Nxh1
[30...Qd8 31.Rxh8 Nd5 and Svidler thought during the game that black is going to find coordinating difficult. "This could very well have been quite good for black." Svidler. However with 4 minutes left it's quite hard for black to decide on something that could go badly wrong according to Svidler.]
With a draw offer which Svidler accepted. Most probably the position is dynamically equal. "I guess we both have reasons to be disappointed. The position I had after 15 moves I'm not going to get again in this tournament, that's for sure, and then probably Boris was winning at some point. We're not sure where but we both feel he probably was." - Svidler.
Kramnik draw Aronian
Kramnik-Aronian. Photo © Ray Morris-Hill http://raymorris-hill.smugmug.com/.
Kramnik,Vladimir (2810) - Aronian,Levon (2809) [A07]
FIDE Candidates London ENG (5.3), 20.03.2013
1.Nf3 d5 2.g3 Bg4 3.Bg2 e6 4.c4 c6 5.0-0 Nf6 6.cxd5 Bxf3 7.Bxf3 cxd5 8.Nc3 Nc6 9.d4 Be7 10.e3 0-0 11.Bd2 Qb8
[11...Rc8 1-0 Gabuzyan,H (2500)-Bok,B (2537)/Maribor SLO 2012/The Week in Chess 943 (45)]
12.Rc1 Rc8 13.Bg2 b5 14.e4 b4 15.Bf4
"I just thought I'm better positionally after Bf4 but yes there were some options." - Kramnik.
[15.Nxd5!? Interesting but most probably even better for black. 15...exd5 16.exd5 Nxd4 17.Rxc8+ Qxc8 18.d6 Bxd6 19.Bg5]
15...Qb6 16.Na4 Qa5 17.e5 Nd7
Both players said they were happy with their positions! "I thought it's clear +/- (winning)" - Kramnik.
18.Be3 Nb6 19.Nxb6 axb6 20.f4
[20.Ra1 Black has zero counter-play - Kramnik.]
[20...g6 21.g4 and Kramnik thinks black lacks any counter-play.]
A terrible move according to Aronian.
[21...Nd8 22.f6 (22.fxe6 fxe6 23.Qg4 Rxc1 24.Bxc1 "I thought it was just kind of mate." - Kramnik. 24...Bf8 25.Bg5 Qxb2 26.Bxd8 Rxd8 27.Qxe6+ Kh8 28.Qxb6 wins.) ]
[22...f4 23.gxf4 won't help in the long run.]
23.Qf3 Nd8 24.Qxd5
[24.Qxf5 Rxc1 25.Rxc1 Qb5 seems OK for black.; 24.Rxc8 Rxc8 25.Qxf5 Rc7 26.e6 fxe6 27.Qh5 Qb5 (27...Bf8 28.Qe8 Nf7 29.Qxe6 Re7 30.Qxd5 Qxd5 31.Bxd5 g6 32.Bg5 and it's very hard to believe white isn't winning easily.) 28.Be4]]
24...Rxc1 25.Rxc1 Qxd5 26.Bxd5 Ra5
"Here I think I already equalised" - Aronian. "Here you're only holding by a miracle." - Kramnik.
27.Bf3 Ra3 28.Rc8 Rxb3 29.Kf2 Rc3
Aronian thought if he had more time he would hold easily but Kramnik thought black was still in quite a bit of trouble.
30.Rb8 b3 31.Rxb6 g5 32.Rb8
[32.d5 Rxe3 33.d6 Rxe5]
[32...f4 Both players agreed Aronian should play f4 here but it isn't that clear.; 32...Rc2+ 33.Ke1 (33.Be2 b2 34.d5 Kg7 35.d6 Bf8 36.Bxg5 Nc6) 33...b2 Looks kind of obvious and black seems fine. 34.Bd1 Rxh2]
33.d5 Rb4 34.Rxb4 Bxb4 35.Bd1 b2 36.Bc2 Nb7?!
But here Aronian was really short of time.
[36...Bc3!? "Very close to a draw." - Aronian. 37.Bxg5 f6 38.exf6 Nf7]
37.Bxg5 Nc5 38.Bxf5 Na4 39.d6 Nc3
Draws my a miracle according to Kramnik. "It has to be lost." - Aronian.
"I was very happy when I saw Ke3 because I thought it was my only chance." - Aronian.
[41.d8Q+ Looks like a better winning attempt in retrospect. 41...Bxd8 42.Bxd8 b1Q 43.Bxb1 Nxb1 was the ending Kramnik would have played if he hadn't thought Ke3 was winning. There are very good chances here but the knight seems to just be able to escape. 44.Ke3 Nc3 (44...Na3 45.Kd3 Kf8 46.Ba5 Ke8) 45.Kd4 Ne2+ 46.Kd3 Ng1 47.Ke3 wins the knight.]
"Just miraculous" - Kramnik who definitely overused this word in the press conference. He saw 41...f6 but was sure Bxf6 was winning but apparently it isn't.
[42.exf6 Kf7 (42...b1Q 43.Bxb1 Nxb1 44.Kd3 Kf7 45.Kc2 Na3+ 46.Kb3 Nb1 47.Kb2 Nc3 48.Bd2 Na4+ 49.Ka3 Nc5 50.Bxa5 Nxd7 51.Bc3 Nxf6 with a draw.) 43.Bxh7 Nd5+ 44.Kf3 Nxf6 45.Bxf6 Kxf6 is starting to look like the game.; 42.Be6+ Kg7! 43.Bxf6+ (43.exf6+ Kg6 44.Bf5+ Kxf5 45.f7 was a variation Aronian found scarey over the board. It seems to lead to a draw! 45...Kxg5 46.f8Q Nd5+ 47.Kd4 b1Q 48.Qg8+ Kh6 49.Qf8+ Kh5 50.Qe8+ Kg4 51.Qe2+ Kg5 52.Qe5+ Qf5 etc) 43...Kg6 44.g4 b1Q]
42...Nd5+ 43.Kd4 Nxf6 44.exf6 Kf7 45.Bxh7 Kxf6 46.Kd5 Ke7 47.Kc6 Kd8
Aronian sped to this position and he can just hold.
Otherwise Bc7 freezes both pawns.
[49.Kd6 Bg3+ 50.hxg3 b1Q 51.Bxb1 stalemate!; 49.g5 Bh4 50.g6 b1Q would of course lose for white.]
49...Bh4 50.Kd6 Be7+ 51.Ke6 Bh4 52.Bb1 Kc7 53.Be4 Kd8 54.Bc2 Kc7 55.Bb1 Kd8 56.Be4 Kc7 57.Bd3 Kd8 58.Kd6 Be7+ 59.Ke6 Bh4 60.Bf5 Kc7 61.Kf7 b1Q 62.Bxb1 Kxd7
"This is lost with the bishop on c2" - Aronian. Now black only has to be precise.
63.Ba2 Kd6 64.Kg6 Ke5 65.Kh5 Be7 66.g5 Kf4 67.h4 Kg3 68.Bc4 Bf8 69.Be2 Bg7 70.Bc4 Bf8 71.g6 Kf4 72.Ba2 Bg7 1/2-1/2
Carlsen draw Ivanchuk
Magnus Carlsen. Photo © Ray Morris-Hill http://raymorris-hill.smugmug.com/.
Ivanchuk,Vassily (2757) - Carlsen,Magnus (2872) [D93]
FIDE Candidates London ENG (5.1), 20.03.2013
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Bf4 Bg7 5.Nf3 0-0 6.e3 c5 7.dxc5 Qa5 8.Rc1 Rd8 9.Qa4 Qxc5 10.b4 Qc6
This all looks very suspicious.
Played after about half an hours thought. Ivanchuk finds the very best. However Carlsen was probably counting on getting him into time trouble.
[11.Qb3 Be6 12.Nd4 Qd7 13.Nxe6 fxe6 14.Rd1 Kh8 15.Be2 Nc6 16.0-0 Rac8 17.Qa3 e5 18.Bg3 d4 19.b5 Qd6 20.c5 Qc7 21.bxc6 dxc3 22.cxb7 Qxb7 23.Ba6 Qc7 24.Bxc8 Rxc8 25.Qxc3 Ne4 26.Qc4 Nxc5 27.Rc1 Bf6 28.Rc2 Qb6 29.Rfc1 Rc7 30.Qd5 e6 31.Qf3 Kg7 32.e4 Rb7 33.h3 Nd7 34.Rc6 Qa5 35.Qe2 Bg5 36.Rd1 Nf8 37.Qa6 Rb5 38.a4 Rc5 39.Qb7+ Kg8 40.Ra6 Rc7 41.Rxa5 Rxb7 42.Bxe5 1-0 Ivakhinova,I (2306)-Sazonova,E (2159)/Tyumen RUS 2012/The Week in Chess 921]
11...dxc4 12.b5 Qb6 13.Bxc4 Be6 14.Bxe6 Qxe6 15.0-0 Nbd7
[15...Bf8 may be more accurate freeing the queen to move away.]
16.Ng5 Qf5 17.Qxe7 Nh5 18.Rfd1 Nxf4 19.exf4 Bf8 20.Qe4 Qxe4 21.Ncxe4
Ivanchuk had 20 moves to make in about 20 minutes.
21...Nb6 22.g3 Rxd1+ 23.Rxd1 Be7 24.Nf3 Rc8 25.Ne5 Rc7 26.Kg2 f6 27.Nf3 Kf7 28.h4 Rc2 29.a4 Ra2 30.Nc3 Ra3 31.Rc1
With a draw offer.
After the draw offer on move 31 which Carlsen turned down. Also most probably this move isn't the best in the position either. "At that point I'd missed some of his ideas and I also think in general that we should play the games out and not agree to a draw in unclear positions." Did you make the decision based on Vassily's clock? "No I just underestimated his possibilities it was unprofessional and a bad decision to play on."
Most probably Ivanchuk could have caused Carlsen more problems if he hadn't been so short of time.
34...Rd7 35.Rb8 Rd8 36.Rb7 Rd7 37.Rxd7 Kxd7 38.Nd4 f5 39.Ng5 Bxg5 40.fxg5 Nc3
Time control. The position is better for white but even though the ending is very interesting and Ivanchuk demonstrated some fascinating variations in the press conference (he spent a long time here) the game is most likely a draw with best play.
41.h5 gxh5 42.Kh3 Kd6 43.Kh4 Kd5 44.Nxf5 Nxb5 45.Kxh5 Ke4 46.Ne3 Nd6 47.Kh6 Nf7+ 48.Kxh7 Nxg5+ 49.Kg6 Nh3 50.Nd1 Kf3 51.Kf5 Nxf2 52.Nxf2 Kxg3 53.Nd1 a5 54.Ke4 a4 55.Kd4 a3 56.Nc3 a2 57.Nxa2 1/2-1/2
Vassily Ivanchuk. Photo © Ray Morris-Hill http://raymorris-hill.smugmug.com/.
Grischuk draw Radjabov
Grischuk-Radjabov. Photo © Ray Morris-Hill http://raymorris-hill.smugmug.com/.
Grischuk,Alexander (2764) - Radjabov,Teimour (2793) [D37]
FIDE Candidates London ENG (5.4), 20.03.2013
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 d5 4.Nc3 Be7 5.Bf4 0-0 6.e3 Nbd7 7.c5 Nh5 8.Be2 Nxf4 9.exf4 b6 10.b4 a5 11.a3 c6 12.0-0 Qc7 13.g3 g6
[13...Ba6 1/2-1/2 Nakamura,H (2758)-Gelfand,B (2744)/Moscow RUS 2011/The Week in Chess 889 (34)]
14.Re1 Ba6 15.Qc2 Bxe2 16.Nxe2 Ra7 17.Rab1 axb4 18.axb4 Rfa8 19.Nc1 Ra3 20.Nd3 Bf6 21.Kg2 Qb7 22.Rec1 Kg7 23.Qd1 b5 24.Nde5 R8a4 25.Rc2 Bd8 26.Qe2 h6 27.Nd3 Nf6 28.Nfe5 Nd7 29.Rcb2 Nxe5 30.dxe5
"Here already I think it's quite bad for black." - Grischuk.
30...Qd7 31.Rb3 Be7 32.Ne1 Qa7
[33.Qc2 "Here I'm quite sure white is winning" - Here the best way is to make sure that black can't sacrifice on c5. It will take a lot of moves to win but there is no doubt that white should win eventually." - Grischuk.]
33...Rxb3 34.Rxb3 Bxc5
"I underestimated this sacrifice." - Grischuk.
35.bxc5 Qxc5 36.Ne3 h5
[36...d4 37.Ng4 "Here I thought I would mate somehow in mutual time trouble but h5 was cold shower." - Grischuk.]
"But still I think I found one good move." - Grischuk.
[37...Qxc2 38.Nxc2 better than the game but still reasonable drawing chances.]
[38.Rc3 d4 39.Rxc6 Qa7 40.Nd1 Qb7 with a pin was Grischuk's line. 41.Kh3 d3 42.Qc1 d2 43.Qc2 Rd4 but white is certainly on top at the end of this rather strange computer line.; 38.Rb1 Re4 (38...Ra8 39.Rc1 Ra6 with a position much better than the game.; 38...Ra3!? 39.Rc1 d4 40.Nd1 d3 41.Qxc6 d2!!) 39.Rc1]
38...Re4 39.Rb1 c5
Rajdabov only had seconds left to make time control.
40.Nd1 Qc6 41.Nc3
[41.Qd3 b4 42.Qf3 Re1 and white is compltely lost according to Grischuk but it might not be quite as bad as that although he is worse and has hardly any moves and no plan which is always bad.]
[41...Rb4 "More poisonous." - Grischuk.]
"I think it's definitely black who is playing for a win." - Grischuk.
[43...Re4 44.f3 c4 45.Qd1 Re3 (45...Rxe2+ 46.Qxe2 c3 47.Qa2 (47.Qd3 and white isn't in danger of losing according to Grischuk. 47...b3!? 48.Rxb3 c2 49.Rc3 c1Q 50.Rxc6 Qxc6 51.Qd2) 47...d4 48.f5 gxf5 49.Rxb4 c2 50.Rc4 c1Q 51.Rxc6 Qxc6 52.Qd2 Qd5 53.Qg5+ Kf8 54.Qh6+ Ke8 55.Qh8+ Ke7 56.Qf6+ Kd7 57.Qxf7+ Kc6 58.Qxh5 d3 59.Qe8+ Kc5 60.Qa4 d2 61.Qc2+ Kb4 62.Qb2+ Ka4 63.Qc2+ with a probable draw.) 46.Rxb4 Rd3]
44.f5 Qc2 45.Qxc2 Rxc2 46.Nf4 gxf5 47.Nxh5+ Kh6 48.Nf6 Ra2 49.Nd7 Ra5 50.Nxc5
Deciding to liquidate into a drawn ending.
50...Rxc5 51.Rxb4 d4 1/2-1/2
|FIDE Candidates London (ENG), 15 iii-1 iv 2013||cat. XXII (2787)|
|Round 5 (March 20, 2013)|
|Svidler, Peter||- Gelfand, Boris||½-½||31||D85||Gruenfeld Defence|
|Kramnik, Vladimir||- Aronian, Levon||½-½||72||A07||Barcza System|
|Grischuk, Alexander||- Radjabov, Teimour||½-½||51||D37||QGD 5.Bf4|
|Ivanchuk, Vassily||- Carlsen, Magnus||½-½||57||D93||Gruenfeld 5.Bf4|
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