Chess24 Sopiko Scotch

6th Tal Memorial 2011 (9)

Carlsen edges out Aronian on tie-break at the Tal Memorial

Magnus Carlsen won the Tal Memorial on tie-break. Photo ©

Magnus Carlsen won the Tal Memorial on tie-break. Photo © |

Magnus Carlsen beat Hikaru Nakamura to take first place in the 6th Tal Memorial in Moscow. Carlsen quickly obtained a decisive advantage with black which he realised in a lengthy technical ending. He edged out Levon Aronian who finished level with him on 5.5/9 due to the fact he had played more games with black, most other tie-breaks favoured the Armenian. Aronian had to hold off sustained pressure from Ian Nepomniachtchi who finished half a point further back alongside Vassily Ivanchuk who had his own winning chances against Sergey Karjakin who also finished on 5 points. Peter Svidler contributed as much as anyone to the event and missed chances to finish in the shake up for first. Svidler eventually beat Vladimir Kramnik on the run up to first time control after earlier losing much if not all of a big opening advantage. Gelfand-Anand was a short draw. Carlsen, Aronian, Kramnik, Anand and Nakamura move on to London for the Classic starting December 3rd.

Magnus Carlsen against Hikaru Nakamura

Round 9: Magnus Carlsen against Hikaru Nakamura. Photo ©

Magnus Carlsen took first place in the Tal Memorial on tie-break from Levon Aronian after they tied on 5.5/9. The first tie-break was number of games with black, if it had been the standard Sonneborn-Berger Aronian would have taken it. Carlsen before he knew the result said he didn't really care, the tie for first (and presumably prize money) seemed most important.

Carlsen's day was quite long but in truth his dispirited opponent made too many mistakes. 15.Nf3? drops or sacrifices a pawn and Carlsen also thought 21.Nxc5? was too compliant by move 25 Carlsen said he was almost winning. He took the game into a bishops of opposite colours ending but with a pawn extra and a tremendous bind he was confident this was winning. He was still working hard towards the end of the game to make sure he didn't let his opponent off the hook but in truth that never looked likely. An instructive technical display.

Nakamura played OK in patches but collapsed towards the end and generally looked ill at ease with the chess he was trying to play. Can he fix things in a week before he plays the London Chess Classic?

Ian Nepomniachtchi watched by Hikaru Nakamura

Round 9: Ian Nepomniachtchi watched by Magnus Carlsen. Photo ©

Nakamura,Hikaru - Carlsen,Magnus [E15]
6th Tal Memorial Moscow RUS (9.2), 25.11.2011

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6

"I needed to play for a win. Queen's Indian is a strange way to play for a win but at least it's a little less drawish than the Queen's Gambit." - Carlsen.

4.g3 Ba6 5.Qc2 Bb4+ 6.Bd2 Be7 7.Bg2

"I suspect neither of us had very much idea what we were doing in the opening." - Carlsen.

7...c6 8.0-0 d5 9.Ne5 Nfd7 10.cxd5

[10.Nxd7 Qxd7 11.cxd5 cxd5 12.Nc3 Nc6 13.Be3 Rc8 14.Rac1 0-0 15.Qa4 Nb8 16.Qxd7 Nxd7 17.a3 b5 18.Rc2 Nb6 19.Rfc1 Nc4 20.Na2 Bb7 21.Bd2 Nxd2 22.Rxd2 Rc4 23.Rdc2 Rb8 24.e3 Rxc2 25.Rxc2 Rc8 26.Rxc8+ Bxc8 27.Bf1 Bd7 28.b4 f6 29.f4 Kf7 30.Bd3 h6 31.Kf2 g5 32.Nc3 a6 33.f5 exf5 34.Nxd5 Bd8 35.Nc3 Ke6 36.Bf1 Bb6 37.Bg2 Bc8 38.a4 bxa4 39.Nxa4 Bc7 40.Nc5+ Kd6 41.Nb3 Bd8 42.Ke2 Kc7 43.Kd3 Kb6 44.d5 Be7 45.Kc4 Bd6 46.Bh3 h5 47.Nd4 h4 48.gxh4 g4 49.Bg2 f4 50.exf4 Bxf4 51.h5 Bxh2 52.h6 Be5 53.Nc6 Bf5 54.Nxe5 fxe5 55.d6 g3 56.Kd5 e4 57.Ke5 e3 58.Kxf5 e2 59.d7 Kc7 60.d8Q+ Kxd8 61.h7 e1Q 62.h8Q+ Kd7 63.Qd4+ Kc7 64.Qc5+ Kd7 65.Bc6+ Kc7 66.Bb5+ Kb7 67.Qc6+ Kb8 68.Qd6+ Kb7 69.Qxa6+ Kb8 70.Qd6+ Kb7 71.Bc6+ Kb6 72.Bd7+ Kb7 73.Qc6+ Ka7 74.Qc7+ 1-0 Salem,A (2124)-Abbasov,F (2467)/Dubai UAE 2006/The Week in Chess 599]

10...cxd5 11.Bf4 Nxe5 12.dxe5

"This looks very similar to some theoretical line which is supposed to be better for white but during the game I couldn't really see it." - Carlsen.

12...0-0 13.Rd1

["One of the tricks here is that if: " 13.Nc3 Nc6 14.Nxd5 Nd4 15.Nxe7+ Qxe7 "it is going to be more or less equal." - Carlsen. 16.Qa4 Nxe2+ 17.Kh1 Nxf4 18.Bxa8 Bxf1 19.Qxf4 "Maybe black is even slightly better here." - Carlsen.]


Seems best. Carlsen avoids 13...Nd7.

["If I'm not completely mistaken " 13...Nd7 14.e4 Rc8 15.Nc3 d4 16.Rxd4 "is some kind of theoretical which is obviously a little bit better for white." - Carlsen.]


[14.e4 d4 15.Nd2 d3 16.Qc3 Na6 "seems like black is doing well." - Carsen.]

14...Nc6 15.Nf3?

"I wasn't sure if this was a blunder." - Carlsen but after the game he called it bad.

[15.h4 "I wasn't just sure if Nf3 is just a blunder or he sacrificed it but anyway I thought it was better to just go h4 but I think black is relatively comfortable." - Carlsen.]


"Again I wasn't so sure if I was missing anything. I thought I wouldn't be able to live with myself if I didn't play 15...g5. So I had to go for it. Really I don't see how white can get any serious compensation." - Carlsen.

16.Be3 g4 17.Nd4 Nxe5 18.Bh6 Re8 19.e4 Bc5

Magnus Carlsen


Hikaru Nakamura

Position after 19...Bc5

"I don't know if Bc5 was necessary but it was very tempting. Here white is only trying to equalise." - Carlsen.


[20.exd5 Qf6 21.Bf4 Bxd5 22.Bxd5 exd5 Black is just better.]


Magnus Carlsen


Hikaru Nakamura

Position after 20...Rc8

[20...Qf6 21.Bf4 (21.Nxc5 bxc5 22.Bf4 dxe4 23.Bxe4 Nf3+ 24.Kg2 Bxe4 25.Qxe4 "and I think white is more or less OK." Carlsen.) ]


"Is bad. He should have taken on d4." - Carlsen.

[21.exd5 was what Carlsen expected. 21...Bxd5 22.Bxd5 (22.Nxc5!?) 22...exd5 23.Qf5 Rc6 24.Bf4 Rf6 25.Qg5+ Rg6 26.Qxd8 Nf3+ 27.Kg2 Rxd8 "I think white has good drawing chances." - Carlsen.]

21...Rxc5 22.Qa4 Bc6 23.Qd4 Qf6 24.Bf4 dxe4 25.Bxe4

"Of course here now black is almost winning" - Carlsen.


[25...Bxe4 26.Qxe4 Nf3+ 27.Kg2 Qf5 "But I thought it was better to have a Bishop on f3 rather than a knight." - Carlsen. ]

26.Bxf3 Qxd4

[26...e5 "Was an amusing opportunity for white to go wrong." - Carlsen. 27.Bxc6 exd4 28.Bxe8 "Otherwise e5 would be quite good." - Carlsen.]

27.Rxd4 Bxf3 28.Rd7

"Black is just technically winning." - Carlsen.


"I wasn't so sure about this." - Carlsen. But later he said "I thought Rd5 was winning more or less by force."

[28...e5 29.Be3 Rd5 30.Rxd5 Bxd5 "I think black should be winning." - Carlsen.]

29.Rxd5 exd5

Magnus Carlsen


Hikaru Nakamura

Position after 29...exd5

What about the bishops of opposite colour? "I'm a pawn up and I have the initiative. Of course opposite coloured bishops is an issue but I thought it wouldn't be enough for white to hold the game." - Carlsen.

30.Be3 Re4 31.Re1 d4 32.Bd2 Rxe1+ 33.Bxe1 Be2

"White's king is boxed in."


"only chance."

34...gxf3 35.Bf2 d3 36.Be1 Kg7 37.Kf2 Kf6 38.Ke3 Kf5 39.h3

Magnus Carlsen


Hikaru Nakamura

Position after 39.h3

Also necessary according to Carlsen.

[39.h4 Kg4 40.Kf2 Bd1 41.Bd2 Bc2 42.Bf4 Bb1 43.a3 b5 44.Bd2 Bc2 45.Be3 a6 46.Bd2 Bb3 47.Bf4 Bd5 48.Bd2 Be4 49.Be3 Kf5 and the black king will penetrate into the queenside. "I thought it was winning." - Carlsen.; 39.Bd2 Kg4]

39...h5 40.Bd2 Bf1 41.Be1

[41.h4; 41.Kxf3 Bxh3 42.Ke3 Bf1 43.Kf2 Be2 "Is quite trivial for black" - Carlsen. 44.Ke3 Kg4 45.Kf2 "There is absolutely no chance for white." - Carlsen.]

41...Bxh3 42.Kxd3

[42.Kxf3 Bf1 43.Bd2 Be2+ 44.Kf2 Kg4 is quite trivial for black.]

42...Bf1+ 43.Ke3 Kg4 44.Kf2 Bb5

"I just don't want to let him exchange any pawns on the queenside."

45.Bc3 Bc6 46.Be5 b5 47.Bb8 a6 48.Bc7 f5 49.b3?

"It is completely trivial for black." - Carlsen. But white has no saving idea here anyway.

[49.a3 Bd7 50.Bd6 f4 51.gxf4 Bf5 52.Bc5 Kxf4 53.Kg1 h4 54.Bf2 h3 55.Kh2 Ke4 56.Kg3 Bg4 is lost for white.]

49...Bd5 50.Bd6 f4 51.gxf4 h4 52.f5 Kxf5 53.Ke3

[53.a4 Bxb3 54.axb5 axb5 55.Kxf3 Bd5+ the two pawns are too far apart.]

53...Kg4 54.Kf2 h3 55.Ke3 Be4 56.Kf2 Bb1 57.a3

[57.a4 b4 58.a5 Be4 59.Kg1 Bd5]

57...Ba2 58.b4 Bf7 0-1

Magnus Carlsen


Hikaru Nakamura

Final Position after 58...Bf7

Ian Nepomniachtchi against Levon Aronian

Round 9: Ian Nepomniachtchi against Levon Aronian. Photo ©

The leader before the round was Levon Aronian and he faced Ian Nepomniachtchi with black. As it turned out Nepomniachtchi would have taken first place on tie-break from Carlsen had he won today. Nepomniachtchi sacrificed the exchange and got full compensation for it and continuously set problems for Aronian. Perhaps white should have avoided 70.Bd7 to keep the tension a little longer but Aronian seemed equal to the task as he drew in this the final game to finish.

Nepomniachtchi,I (2730) - Aronian,L (2802) [D37]
6th Tal Memorial Moscow RUS (9), 25.11.2011

1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Be7 4.Nf3 Nf6 5.Bf4 0-0 6.e3 Nbd7 7.Qc2 c5 8.Rd1 Qa5 9.Nd2 cxd4 10.exd4 dxc4 11.Nxc4 Qd8 12.Bd3 Nb6 13.0-0 Bd7 14.Nxb6 Qxb6 15.d5 Rfd8

[15...Kh8 16.Qe2 (16.dxe6 1/2-1/2 Grischuk,A (2747)-Kramnik,V (2785)/Kazan RUS 2011/The Week in Chess 863) 16...Rae8 17.d6 1/2-1/2 Svidler,P (2755)-Giri,A (2714)/Porto Carras GRE 2011/The Week in Chess 887]

16.Qe2 Rac8 17.Bb1 Bb4 18.Be3 Qc7 19.Bd4 Bxc3 20.Bxc3 Nxd5 21.Rxd5!?

This exchange sacrifice is made to work really well by Nepomniachtchi.

Levon Aronian


Ian Nepomniachtchi

Position after 21.Rxd5

21...exd5 22.Qd3 f5 23.Qxd5+ Kh8 24.Qf7 Rg8 25.Rd1

[25.Re1 Be8 26.Qxc7 Rxc7]

25...Be8 26.Qxc7 Rxc7 27.Bxf5 Bg6 28.Bg4 Re8 29.h4 Kg8 30.Bd7 Re7 31.Ba4 h6 32.f3 Kh7 33.Kf2 a6

[33...Rc4 34.Bb3 Rxh4]

34.Rd6 b5 35.Bb3 Bf7 36.Bc2+ Kg8 37.Bf5 Ra7 38.a3 Re8 39.g4 Bc4

Levon Aronian


Ian Nepomniachtchi

Position after 40.g5


[40.Bd4 Was a position briefly discussed by the players and also by Yasser Seirawan in commentary.]

40...hxg5 41.hxg5 Rf8 42.Bg4

[42.Be4 Re7 43.Kg3 Re6 44.Rd7 Rf7 45.Rd8+ Rf8 46.Bh7+ Kf7 47.g6+ Ke7 48.Rd1 Ref6 is not better for white.]

42...a5 43.Kg3 Re8 44.Bd7 Rea8 45.Be5 Kf8 46.Bg4

[46.a4 bxa4 47.Bxa4 Ra6 48.Rd7 R6a7]

46...Re7 47.Bd4 Ke8 48.Rg6 Bd3 49.Rb6

[49.Rxg7 Rxg7 50.Bxg7 Kf7 51.Bc3 Kg6 52.Kh4 Bf5]

49...Rd8 50.Bc3 Rd5 51.Bh5+ Kd8 52.Kh4 b4 53.axb4 axb4 54.Rxb4 Kc7 55.f4 g6 56.Bf3 Rb5 57.Ra4

[57.Rxb5 Bxb5 58.f5 Re3 59.Bg2 Be8 60.f6 Bf7]

57...Re6 58.Kg3 Bf5 59.Ra7+

[59.Ba5+; 59.Kf2 Rc5]

59...Kd8 60.Ra4

[60.Ba5+ Ke8 61.b4 Kf8 62.Kf2 Be4; 60.Kf2 Reb6 61.Ke3 Rxb2 62.Bxb2 Rb3+]

60...Ke8 61.Rd4 Rb8 62.Kf2

[62.b4 Re3 63.Bd2 Rb3]

62...Reb6 63.Rd2 Rc8 64.Bd5 Rd6 65.Re2+ Kd7 66.Bb3

[66.Re5 Re8 67.Rxf5 gxf5 68.Bf7 Re4 69.g6 Rxf4+ 70.Ke3 Rg4 (70...Re4+! 71.Kf3 Ke7) 71.g7 Rdg6 72.Bxg6 Rxg6 73.b4 is equal.]

66...Ra6 67.Rd2+

[67.Ke3 Ra3 68.Bf7]

67...Ke8 68.Ke3 Rb6 69.Ba4+

[69.Bd5 Rd6 70.Bf7+ Kd7]

69...Kf7 70.Bd7

Levon Aronian


Ian Nepomniachtchi

Position after 70.Bd7

This probably makes black's defense easier as after this it becomes easier to know what to do. But white maybe doesn't really have some many chances anyway.


70...Bxd7 71.Rxd7+ Ke8 72.Rh7 Rc4 73.Rh6 Re6+ 74.Be5 Rb4 75.Kd3 Kd7 76.Rh7+ Kc6 77.Kc3 Re4 78.Rc7+ Kd5 79.Kd3 R6xe5 80.fxe5 Rxe5 81.Ra7 Ke6 82.Ra6+ Kf5 83.b4 Kxg5 84.Ra5 Kf4 85.Rxe5



Vladimir Kramnik against Peter Svidler

Round 9: Vladimir Kramnik lost to Peter Svidler after he went astray on the run up to the first time control. Photo ©

Peter Svidler got a big strategic advantage out of the opening against Vladimir Kramnik. Svidler could have played 17.e3 with a stable advantage but felt 17.Nfd2 was the best move and that he should play it in spite of the complications from 17...Bxf2+ which Kramnik was virtually forced into. Svidler felt he started to go wrong with 21.Bxa6 rather than 21.Be4 and after 24....Nxd3 black's position quickly improved. The game was then dynamically balanced before things went very wrong for Kramnik on the run up to the first time control. 34...h6 was better than 34..f6, 35...c4? and black is in trouble, finally 36... Qe4 meets with a fine finish from Svidler. Peter Svidler thus finished on 50% and Vladimir Kramnik after getting his rating to 2800 is in danger of missing out on the Candidates due to a fall in rating with only London to try and fix things. Svidler however contributed as much as anyone to this event and his score didn't quite reflect that. There were a few missed half chances and Aronian admitted in the Round 8 press conference he was a bit lucky a win against Svidler eventually turned up.

Svidler,Peter - Kramnik,Vladimir [A13]
6th Tal Memorial Moscow RUS (9.4), 25.11.2011


Svidler press conference: HD 16:59.

1...d5 2.c4 e6 3.g3 dxc4 4.Qa4+ Nd7 5.Bg2 a6 6.Qxc4 b5 7.Qb3 Bb7 8.0-0 Ngf6 9.Nc3 Be7 10.d3 0-0 11.a4

[11.Bd2 0-1 Prang,E (2264)-Maric,A (2481)/Lugano SUI 1999 (26); 11.Qc2 1/2-1/ 2 Aleksandrov,A (2617)-Vitiugov,N (2638)/Warsaw 2008/CBM 127 Extra (54)]

11...b4 12.Nb1 Nc5

[12...a5 13.Nbd2 Nb6 14.Qc2 c5 15.b3 Qd5 16.Bb2 Rac8 17.Rac1 Qh5 18.h3 Rfd8 19.Rfd1 Nfd7 20.e4 Ba6 21.Nf1 f6 22.Ne3 Nb8 23.e5 Nc6 24.exf6 gxf6 25.Nc4 Nxc4 26.dxc4 Bb7 27.Qe4 Kf7 28.Qf4 e5 29.Bxe5 Rxd1+ 30.Rxd1 Nxe5 31.Nxe5+ Qxe5 32.Qxe5 fxe5 33.Bxb7 Rd8 34.Bd5+ Kf6 35.Rd3 Rf8 36.Be4 1-0 Wegerle,J (2430)-Besner,B (2150)/Austria 2010/EXT 2011]


[13.Qd1 e5 14.Nxe5 Bxg2 15.Kxg2 Qd5+ 16.Nf3 Nb3 17.e4 Nxe4 18.dxe4 Qxd1 19.Rxd1 Nxa1 is an interesting line.]

13...e5 14.Be3 e4 15.Bxc5 Bxc5

[15...exf3 16.Bxe7 Qxe7 17.exf3 Rfd8 18.Nd2 Qe2 19.Qxc7 Rd7 is equal.]

16.dxe4 Nxe4 17.Nfd2

Here Svidler thought black was strategically lost and that white should not be afraid of the coming bishop sacrifice.

[17.e3 and white is much better.; 17.Nbd2 Qe7 and white is better even though this allows black "modicum of coordination".]


Vladimir Kramnik


Peter Svidler

Position after 17...Bxf2

Virtually forced. if 17...Nxd2 18.Nxd2 Bxg2 19.Kxg2 black is in huge trouble strategically.

18.Rxf2 Nxf2 19.Bxb7 Ng4

[19...Rb8 20.Kxf2 Rxb7 21.Nf3; 19...Qd4 20.Nf3 (20.Bxa8 Ng4+ 21.Kh1) 20...Qe3 21.Bxa8]

20.Nf3 Rb8 21.Bxa6

Probably a mis-step.

[21.Be4 was the better continuation.]

21...Qf6 22.Bd3 Qb6+ 23.Kh1 Nf2+

[23...Qf2 24.Qc1 The only move that stops mate with Ne3 next and white is winning. (24.Qd1 Qxf3+ 25.exf3 Nf2+ 26.Kg2 Nxd1) ]

24.Kg2 Nxd3

Svidler underestimated the merits of this move a lot, and probably why 21.Be4 was the better continuation.


[25.Qxd3 Rbd8 26.Qb3 Rfe8 27.Kf1 Qh6]

25...Rfe8 26.a5

[26.Qf2 Qa6 27.Qf1 Rbd8 28.Nbd2 Rxd3 29.Rc1 is equal.]


Svidler was no longer that happy with the position.

[26...Qa6 27.Kf2]


[27.Ng1 Re1]

27...Rbd8 28.Ra4

[28.d4 Qa6 29.Ng1 Qd3 30.Nd2 Rxd4 31.Ndf3 Rc4 32.Ne1 Qd5+ 33.Ngf3 Rce4]

28...c5 29.a6


29...Rxd3 30.a7

[30.Nbd2 Qxb2 31.a7 Ra3 is equal. (31...Ra8 may be better.) 32.Rxa3 bxa3 33.Qxc5]

30...Qc6 31.Ra5 Qa8

[31...Rxf3 32.Qxf3 Re2+ 33.Kg1 Re1+ 34.Kg2 (34.Kf2 Rf1+ 35.Kxf1 Qxf3+ 36.Ke1 Qe3+ 37.Kd1 Qf3+ 38.Kc2 Qe4+ 39.Kb3 Qd5+ Also looks like a draw.) 34...Re2+ draws.]

32.Nbd2 Rde3


33.Nc4 R3e6

[33...Re2 34.Nb6 Rxf2+ 35.Kxf2 Qe4 36.a8Q Qe2+ 37.Kg1 Qe3+ 38.Kg2 Qe2+ 39.Kh3 Qf1+ 40.Kh4 g5+ 41.Nxg5 Rxa8 42.Rxa8+ Kg7 and it looks dynamically equal.]

34.Kg1 f6

[34...h6 35.Nfe5 Rxe5 36.Nxe5 Rxe5 37.Rxc5 Re7 equal.]


Vladimir Kramnik


Peter Svidler

Position after 35.Ncd2

[35.Nfe5 fxe5 36.Qxc5 h6 (36...Rd8) 37.Nb6]


[35...Re3 and the game goes on. 36.Qf1 Re2 37.Qc1 and white is a little better.; 35...g5? 36.Qxc5 g4 37.Nd4 Re1+ 38.Kf2 Rh1 39.Qc4+ Kh8 40.Nf1 winning for white.]

36.Nxc4 Qe4?

[36...Qb7 but white is still better.]

37.Nd4 R6e7

[37...Qb1+ 38.Kg2 Qe4+ 39.Qf3 Qxd4 40.a8Q is over.]

38.Nd6 Qb1+ 39.Kg2 Ra8 40.Qf3 Raxa7 41.Qa8+!

a lovely finish.


Sergey Karjakin against Vassily Ivanchuk

Sergey Karjakin against Vassily Ivanchuk. Photo ©

Sergey Karjakin gave up material against Vassily Ivanchuk and was in danger of losing at one point. Time trouble and complexity allowed him to escape and the game was drawn in 42 moves. Ivanchuk didn't seem too upset afterwards at the press conference.

Karjakin,Sergey - Ivanchuk,Vassily [B46]
6th Tal Memorial Moscow RUS (9.5), 25.11.2011

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Nxc6 bxc6 7.Bd3 Qc7 8.Qe2 Bb7 9.e5

[9.0-0 d5 10.Na4 Nf6 11.c4 dxe4 12.Bxe4 Nxe4 13.Qxe4 c5 14.Bf4 Qc8 15.Qc2 Qc6 16.f3 Be7 17.Rad1 0-0 18.b3 Rfd8 19.Qf2 h6 20.Be3 Rxd1 21.Rxd1 Rc8 22.Rd3 Kf8 23.Qd2 Ke8 24.Bf4 Bf8 25.h4 Be7 26.h5 f6 27.Bd6 e5 28.Nxc5 Bxd6 29.Nxb7 Be7 30.Nd6+ Bxd6 31.Rxd6 Qb7 32.Qa5 Qa7+ 33.Qb6 1-0 Hector,J (2553)-Timman,J (2579)/Malmoe SWE 2003/The Week in Chess 443]

9...c5 10.0-0 d5 11.exd6 Bxd6 12.Be4 Nf6

[12...Bxh2+ 13.Kh1 Bd6 14.Nb5 axb5 15.Qxb5+]

13.Bxb7 Qxb7 14.Bg5 Qxb2



[15.Qf3 0-0 16.Bxf6 gxf6 17.Qxf6 Qxc2]

15...gxf6 16.Ne4 Be5

[16...Be7 17.Rab1 Qe5 18.f4 Qd4+ 19.Kh1 f5 20.Ng3]

17.Rab1 Qxa2 18.f4

[18.Qf3 0-0 19.Nxf6+ Bxf6 20.Qxf6 Qxc2 21.Rb3! Draws as black has to take the rook and allow perpetual check.]

18...Bd4+ 19.Kh1 0-0

[19...f5 20.Nd6+ Kd7 21.Nxf7 Rhb8 22.Rbd1]


[20.Rb3 Rfb8 21.Rg3+ Kf8 and black is winning.]

20...Kh8 21.Qf3

Vassily Ivanchuk


Sergey Karjakin

Position after 21.Qf3


[21...Qxc2 may be worth grabbing as the d4 bishop is then secure.]

22.c3 Be5 23.Qe3 Rg8 24.fxe6 fxe6 25.Rb2 Rg4

Ivanchuk clearly thinks this forces the win.

[25...Rg6 more solid protecting f6 but this position is very hard to calculate in mutual time trouble. 26.Rd2 Qc6 (26...Qc4) 27.Nxc5 Rag8 28.Ne4 Rg4]

26.Nxf6 Rf8 27.Rd2

[27.Qh6 Rxf6]


Vassily Ivanchuk


Sergey Karjakin

Position after 27...Qc4


This seems to be the defensive resource Ivanchuk overlooked.

[28.Rdf2 Bxf6 29.Qh6 Rgg8 30.Qxf6+ (30.Rxf6 Qxf1+) 30...Rxf6 31.Rxf6 Qxc3 is hopeless for white.; 28.Rf3 Bxf6 29.Qh6 Rgg8 30.Rdf2 (30.Rd7 Be7 (30...Bg7 31.Rxg7 Qf1+) ) 30...Bg7]


[28...Bxf6 29.Qh6 Rgg8 30.Rxf6 Qe4 31.Rg1 Rxg2 32.Rxg2 Rg8 (32...Qb1+ 33.Rg1 Qb7+ 34.Rg2 Rg8 35.Rfg6!! is equal. 35...Qb1+ 36.Rg1 Qe4+ 37.R6g2 Rxg2 38.Rxg2 Qe1+ 39.Rg1 Qe4+ 40.Rg2) 33.Qg7+! Rxg7 34.Rf8+ Rg8 35.Rfxg8#]

29.Rxf4 Bxf4 30.Qe4 Qxe4 31.Nxe4

The worst is over now and Ivanchuk has to readjust to the new situation.

31...a5 32.g3 Be5 33.Ra1 Ra8 34.Ra4 c4 35.Kg2 Kg7 36.Kf3 Kg6 37.h3 h5 38.g4 h4 39.Ke2 Bg7 40.Kf2 Rf8+ 41.Ke2 Ra8 42.Kf2 Rf8+ 1/2-1/2

Viswanathan Anand against Boris Gelfand.

Round 9: Viswanathan Anand against Boris Gelfand. Photo ©

Anyone hoping that Boris Gelfand would go for Viswanathan Anand in an attempt to gain some kind of psychological advantage for their world title match would have been sorely disappointed and the players took a quick draw in a level position. Anand's score of 50% was at first sight not too bad, but his play was generally below par and he contributed nothing memorable at all to the event, very poor from one of the two most highly paid players. He will have to produce some wins against the English contingent in London in order not to lose a lot of rating points so he hopefully will be more entertaining there. Chess players are not performing seals nevertheless there is an expectation over an event they will produce something of interest.

Gelfand,Boris - Anand,Viswanathan [D37]
6th Tal Memorial Moscow RUS (9.1), 25.11.2011


Press conference HD 15:38 where nothing of any interest was said.

1...Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 d5 4.Nc3 Be7 5.Bf4 0-0 6.a3 dxc4 7.e4 b5 8.Nxb5 Nxe4 9.Bxc4 Nd6 10.Bd3

[10.Nxd6 cxd6 11.0-0 Nd7 12.b4 Bb7 13.Qe2 Rc8 14.Rfc1 Nb6 15.Bd3 Rxc1+ 16.Rxc1 Qa8 17.h3 Rc8 18.b5 Rxc1+ 19.Bxc1 Qc8 20.Bd2 Bxf3 21.Qxf3 d5 22.Qg3 Bxa3 23.Bxh7+ Kxh7 24.Qxa3 Qc2 25.Qxa7 Qxd2 26.Qxb6 Qc1+ 27.Kh2 Qf4+ 1/2-1/2 Moiseenko,A (2715)-Fridman,D (2661)/Porto Carras GRE 2011/The Week in Chess 887]

10...Nxb5 11.Bxb5 Bb7 12.0-0 Nd7 13.Rc1 Bd6 14.Bg3 Rb8 15.Ne5 Nxe5 16.dxe5 Be7 17.Qxd8 Bxd8 18.Bc4

Gelfand started with this position when discussing the game. Black is slightly more more passively placed. White has a better pawn structure and more space but it doesn't look like very much at all in this specific position against a player such as Anand and the game quickly ends in a draw.

18...Be7 19.Rfd1 Rfd8 20.Bf4 Rxd1+ 21.Rxd1 Bc6 22.Rd2 a5 23.Kf1 Kf8 24.Be3 Ke8 25.f4 a4 26.Ba7 Ra8 27.Be3 Rb8 28.Ba7 Ra8 29.Be3

Taking the draw.


Viswanathan Anand


Boris Gelfand

Position after 29.Be3

6th Tal Memorial 2011 Moscow (RUS), 16-25 xi 2011 cat. XXII (2776)
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0
1. Carlsen, Magnus g NOR 2826 * ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 1 2850
2. Aronian, Levon g ARM 2802 ½ * ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 ½ ½ ½ 2853
3. Karjakin, Sergey g RUS 2763 ½ ½ * ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ 5 2820
4. Nepomniachtchi, Ian g RUS 2730 ½ ½ ½ * ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 5 2824
5. Ivanchuk, Vassily g UKR 2775 ½ 0 ½ ½ * ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 5 2819
6. Anand, Viswanathan g IND 2811 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ * ½ ½ ½ ½ 2772
7. Svidler, Peter g RUS 2755 0 ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ * 1 ½ 1 2778
8. Kramnik, Vladimir g RUS 2800 ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ 0 * ½ ½ 2693
9. Gelfand, Boris g ISR 2744 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ * ½ 2700
10. Nakamura, Hikaru g USA 2758 0 ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ * 3 2653
Round 9 (November 25, 2011)
Karjakin, Sergey - Ivanchuk, Vassily ½-½ 42 B46 Sicilian Paulsen
Nepomniachtchi, Ian - Aronian, Levon ½-½ 85 D37 QGD 5.Bf4
Svidler, Peter - Kramnik, Vladimir 1-0 41 A13 Reti Opening
Gelfand, Boris - Anand, Viswanathan ½-½ 29 D37 QGD 5.Bf4
Nakamura, Hikaru - Carlsen, Magnus 0-1 58 E15 Queens Indian

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