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FIDE World Cup Khanty Mansiysk 2011 (3.2)

Morozevich's early draw offer allows Grischuk to progress

Morozevich in game two of his match against Grischuk. He impulsively offered a draw after 12 moves to be eliminated. Photo ©

Morozevich in game two of his match against Grischuk. He impulsively offered a draw after 12 moves to be eliminated. Photo © |

Alexander Morozevich brought his participation in the 2011 World Cup to a conclusion with an early draw offer on move 12 against Alexander Grischuk to lose the match 1.5-0.5. Grischuk was as surprised as anyone. "My first idea was that I misheard him." He refused to speculate on why Morozevich did this saying that it was up to journalists "this is part of your job". My guess, Morozevich was upset to lose such a titanic game one and after black got a satisfactory position in game two he made the emotional decision that he had no chance of levelling against such a strong opponent and impulsively offered the draw. Grischuk talked over his first game "I don't think I got that much pleasure from a game for a year at least." I give some of the notes he gave in the press conference below.

Grischuk said he was unlucky to be drawn against such a strong opponent who had won three tournaments in a row. The first game was a thrilling struggle that gave him great pleasure. He talked about it on the English commentary for round 3 day 2 after qualifying.

Grischuk,Alexander (2746) - Morozevich,Alexander (2694) [C02]
FIDE World Cup 2011 Khanty-Mansiysk RUS (3.1), 03.09.2011
[Notes based on comments by Alexander Grischuk]

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 c5 4.c3 Bd7 5.Nf3 Qb6 6.Bd3

I introduced this move at the top level against Mikhail Gurevich in Wijk aan Zee. This was my favourite line 8-10 years ago. I didn't check this since. Back then I was going to play Qg4.

6...cxd4 7.Nxd4 Bc5 8.0-0

Alexander Morozevich


Alexander Grischuk

Position after 8.0-0

Avoiding Morozevich's preparation which Grischuk assumed was for 8....Qg4. At least now it is white who has the initiative.

[8.Qg4 Ne7 9.0-0 Ng6 10.Nf3 Bb5 11.Bxb5+ Qxb5 12.Nbd2 Nd7 13.c4 Qc6 14.b3 Ndxe5 15.Nxe5 Nxe5 16.Qxg7 Ng6 17.Nf3 Bf8 18.Qd4 dxc4 19.Bg5 c3 20.Rad1 Be7 21.Qg7 Bf8 22.Qd4 Be7 23.Qg7 Bf8 1/2-1/2 Khairullin,I (2544)-Volkov,S (2623)/Moscow RUS 2008/The Week in Chess 693]

8...Bxd4 9.cxd4 Qxd4 10.Nc3

Threat Nb5 so a6 is very logical.

10...a6 11.Re1 Bc6

[11...Ne7 12.Be3 Qxe5 13.Bc5 Qf6 14.Bxe7 Qxe7 15.Nxd5 with a good initiative.]


[12.Be3 Qxe5 13.Bc5 Qg5 and I am two pawns down.]


[12...Qxe5 13.Nf4 Qf6 14.Nh5 winning g7.]

13.h3 Qh5 14.Bf4 Bb5

I was completely surprised by this move. He has only two pieces developed and he exchanges one of them. But if he goes normally I just get a huge initiative and position compensation for the pawn.


[15.Qc1 Nc6 16.Ng3 Qh4 17.Be4 dxe4 (17...h6 18.Bxd5) 18.Bg5 computer line.]

15...Ne7 16.Bxb5+ axb5 17.Qxb5+ Nbc6 18.Qxb7

Alexander Morozevich


Alexander Grischuk

Position after 18.Qxb7

18... 0-0?!

Here black should play 18...Rb8 19.Qa6 0-0 20.Qa3 Qf5 computer thinks black is much better although Grischuk is not sure why.

19.Qb3 Rab8 20.Qc3

Now although it is much easier to play with black than white, white should be considerably better.

20...Rfc8 21.Qd2 h6

[21...Ng6 22.b3 Ra8 23.Rac1 Qf5 24.Bg3 Ncxe5 25.Nd4 Qd3 26.Rxc8+ Rxc8 27.Qd1]

22.Rac1 Qh4 23.b3 Nf5



Forced otherwise he will play g5 and g4 because white's bishop is completely out of play.

24...Nfe7 25.Kg2?!

[25.Bg3 is a much better move as black can't capture the pawn. 25...Qxh3 26.f3]

25...Ra8 26.Rc5 f5

Alexander Morozevich


Alexander Grischuk

Position after 26....f5


[27.exf6 Qxf6 28.Rec1 is much better for white.]

27...Nxf5 28.Rec1 Nce7 29.Rxc8+ Nxc8

Grischuk missed this capture. Practically black is clearly better according to him.

30.Rc6 Qe7

[30...Nce7 31.Rxe6 Qh5 and black has dozens of tricks.]

31.Qc2 Qe8 32.a4 Qg6+ 33.Bg3 Nce7 34.Nf4 Qf7 35.Rc7

Black now chooses the wrong plan, he should be looking for d4.

35...g5 36.Ne2 Rf8 37.a5 h5

Black has chosen the wrong plan.

38.Qd2 Qg6 39.a6 h4 40.Bh2 g4 41.Nf4!

White is winning and this is the most accurate way of doing it.

41...Qg5 42.Qe2 Nh6

Alexander Morozevich


Alexander Grischuk

Position after 42....Nh6


White missed a win here which Grischuk found afterwards using a computer.

[43.a7 gxh3+ 44.Kxh3 Qf5+ 45.Kxh4 I saw it. But I was not brave enough.]


Black misses a final resource, but again Grischuk found this only with the aid of a computer.

[43...Rc8! 44.Rxe6 (44.hxg4 Qxe7 45.f3 and white retains his winning advantage.) 44...gxh3+ 45.Kxh3 Rc3+]

44.Kxh3 Qxe7 45.Ng6 Qb4 46.Nxf8 Kxf8 47.a7 Qa5 48.Bf4 Nf5 49.Qh5 Kg7 50.Qg5+ Kh7 51.Qh5+ Kg7 52.Bg5 Qc3+ 53.Kg2 h3+ 54.Qxh3 Qc6 55.Bf6+ Kg6 56.Qg4+ 1-0

It seems that Morozevich was almost broken by this loss. He gave up a draw very quickly in the second game.

Morozevich,Alexander (2694) - Grischuk,Alexander (2746) [E35]
FIDE World Cup 2011 Khanty-Mansiysk RUS (3.2), 04.09.2011

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 d5 5.cxd5 exd5 6.Bg5 h6 7.Bxf6 Qxf6 8.a3 Bxc3+ 9.Qxc3 0-0 10.Nf3 Bf5 11.e3 Rc8 12.Rc1

Draw offered by Alexander Morozevich. They are still in theory.


Alexander Grischuk


Alexander Morozevich

Final Position after 12.Rc1

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