2010 Cap d'Agde rapid - Eight qualify, Nakamura blitzes

10/27/2010 – In the Cap d'Agde invitational rapid, sixteen players were invited including French talents Romain Edouard, Tigran Gharamian, and Sophie Milliet, as well as Vasily Ivanchuk, Judit Polgar and title-holder Hikaru Nakamura among others. Two groups played round-robins, and now the quarter-final matches will start. Report with pictures, videos, and games commented by GM Romain Edouard.

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The 2010 Cap d'Agde rapid tournament is underway with the first phase having just finished. It is a 16-player invitational event going from October 23rd to October 31st for the final. The time control is 25 minutes plus 10 seconds increment.

The participants:

Name
Rtg
Tit
Age
Nat.
Vasily Ivanchuk
2754
GM
41
Ukraine
Hikaru Nakamura
2733
GM
22
USA
Xiangzhi Bu
2695
GM
25
China
Liem Le Quang
2694
GM
19
Vietnam
Judit Polgar
2682
GM
34
Hungary
Tigran Gharamian
2658
GM
26
France
Romain Edouard
2636
GM
19
France
Jon Ludvig Hammer
2633
GM
20
Norway
Truong Nguyen Ngoc
2633
GM
20
Vietnam
Anatoly Karpov
2619
GM
59
Russia
Yannick Pelletier
2592
GM
34
Swiss
Tatiana Kosintseva
2573
GM
24
Russia
Nadezhda Kosintseva
2565
IM
25
Russia
Kateryna Lahno
2539
GM
20
Ukraine
Zhu Chen
2480
GM
34
Qatar
Sophie Milliet
2388
IM
26
France

From Saturday, October 23rd, until Tuesday, October 26th, the sixteen players were split into two groups of eight, who played a round-robin to qualify four players.


Judit Polgar facing Truong Nguyen Ngoc in the first phase.

Group 1 ranking
Group 2 ranking
Name
Rtg
Pts
Name
Rtg
Pts
Hikaru Nakamura 2733 6.5 - Vasily Ivanchuk 2754 5.5
Xiangzhi Bu 2695 5.5 - Liem Le Quang 2694 5.5
Truong Nguyen Ngoc 2633 4.0 - Yannick Pelletier 2592 4.0
Judit Polgar 2682 3.5 - Jon Ludvig Hammer 2633 4.0
Romain Edouard 2636 3.0 - Tigran Gharamian 2658 3.0
Anatoly Karpov 2619 2.5 - Lahno Kateryna 2539 3.0
Nadezhda Kosintseva 2565 2.5 - Zhu Chen 2480 2.0
Sophie Milliet 2388 0.5 - Tatiana Kosintseva 2573 1.0

In the first phase, the heaviest scorer was the title-holder American GM Hikaru Nakamura, who took off with a 6.5/7 score.


Nakamura showed once more his speed skills as he dropped
only a half point in the qualifying stage.

On Thursday, October 28th, the first two 1/4 final matches will be played, each of two games:

2:30 PM (local time - 8:30 AM NY Time)
Hikaru Nakamura - Jon Hammer

6 PM (local time - 12 Noon NY Time)
Bu Xiangzhi - Yannick Pelletier

Then on Friday, October 29th, the next two 1/4 final matches will be played, each of two games:

2:30 PM (local time - 8:30 AM NY Time)
Truong Nguyen Ngoc - Liem Le Quang

6 PM (local time - 12 Noon NY Time)
Judit Polgar - Vasily Ivanchuk

GM Romain Edouard was kind enough to select a couple of games and comment them in his dynamic and entertaining style.

Nakamura,Hikaru (2735) - Edouard,Romain (2636)
Le trophée CCAS 2010 Cap d'agde (1), 23.10.2010 [Romain Edouard]

There are more peaceful ways to start than playing against Nakamura with the black pieces, but ok, I had to deal with it. 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Bc4 Qb6 7.Nb3 e6 8.Bf4 Ne5 9.Be2 Bd7 10.Qd2 Be7 11.f3 0-0 12.g4 Qc7 13.0-0-0 Rfd8 14.g5 Nh5 15.Be3 Nc4 16.Bxc4 Qxc4 17.Ne2 a5 18.Kb1 a4 19.Nbc1








At this moment my position ought to be fine for sure. Nevertheless, I had already spent a few minutes, while my opponent still had his initial 25 minutes on the clock. Sometimes I felt like pressing the clock again and saying, "Come on, use your time, this isn't bullet here!". Still it is awesome to face such a confident player, especially when you know that it took him just a few seconds to see all the things for which you needed minutes! 19...Be8! The best move, I believe. 19...d5?! 20.Ng3! (20.exd5 Bc6 is just better for Black.) 20...g6 21.Nxh5 gxh5 22.Nd3 seems to be much better for White. 20.Ng3 f6 21.Rhg1?! A dubious move, but played so fast that I would consider it interesting! 21...d5 21...Nxg3!? 22.Rxg3 d5 deserves attention, as I don't have my bishop misplaced on h5, as in the game. Black may already be clearly better (even winning according to the engine). 22.gxf6








This is already less clear. 22...Bxf6? Of course 22...dxe4! was critical: 23.fxe7 (23.Nxh5 Rxd2 24.Rxg7+ Kh8 followed by 25.-- Bf8 just wins for Black.) 23...Rxd2 24.Rxd2 Nxg3 25.Rxg3 Ra5! and Black should be better. 23.e5!








I overlooked how strong this was. To be honest, I had seen 22...dxe4 earlier, but the sudden speed stunned me so much that I just forgot about it! 23...Bxe5 23...Be7 is given equal by the computer, but somehow I just don't trust it. 24.Nxh5 Bxh5 25.Rg5 Bxf3 26.Rxe5 Bxd1 27.Qxd1 d4 28.Bd2








28...d3? A hallucination! Some normal moves would have kept some chances, though White is now better. I was starting to lack time and while playing ...d3 I thought I could play 29...Rxd3 30.Nxd3 Qxd3+ followed by ...Rd8/...a3, but I overlooked that my opponent could cover the check with 31.Qc2!! 29.cxd3 29.Nxd3 also just wins. 29...Qc7 30.Bc3 Now white is just winning. The rest is a matter for technique, especially for Hikaru. Strangely, now that I was totally lost, he began using some of his time (ok, maybe some three minutes). I was wondering if he knew that I would comment the game and was afraid of my remarks if he humiliated me too much :-) 30...a3 31.Qg4 axb2 32.Qxe6+ Qf7 33.Qxf7+ Kxf7 34.Kxb2 Ra4 35.Rb5 Rd7 36.d4 Ra6 37.Nd3 Re7 38.Ne5+ Ke8 39.Rc5 Ree6 40.Rc8+ Ke7 41.Rc7+ Kd8 42.Rxg7 Reb6+ 43.Ka1 Rf6 44.Rg2 Rab6 45.Rg1 Ke7 46.Re1 Rb5 47.d5 Ra6 48.Ng4+ Kd6 49.Nf6 Kc5 50.Rc1 Kc4 51.d6 Ra8 52.d7 After the game Hikaru told me about the several possibilities I had that would allow me to reach an unclear or even better position early on. It was funny because I had the feeling that he was making a summary of all the good positions he would also have killed me in! 1-0 [Click to replay]


Lahno,Kateryna (2539) - Kosintseva,Tatiana (2573)
Le trophée CCAS 2010 Cap d'agde (1), 23.10.2010 [Romain Edouard]

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 d5 4.Nc3 Bb4 5.cxd5 exd5 6.Bg5 Nbd7 6...0-0 7.e3 c5 8.dxc5 Nbd7 9.Rc1 Qa5 10.a3 Bxc3+ 11.Rxc3 Ne4 12.b4 Nxc3 13.Qa1 Qa4 14.Qxc3 a5 15.b5 Nxc5?! 16.Qxc5 Be6?! 17.Qc1 Rfc8 18.Qa1 Qc2 19.Be2 Qc1+ 20.Qxc1 Rxc1+ 21.Bd1 Ra1 22.a4 Rc8 23.Nd4 Rc4 24.0-0 f6 25.Bf4 Bf7 26.h4 1-0 Topalov,V (2783)-Carlsen,M (2690)/Wijk aan Zee NED 2007 7.Rc1 h6 8.Bh4 c5 9.dxc5 Qa5 10.a3 Bxc3+ 11.Rxc3 Ne4 12.b4 Nxc3 13.Qb3 Qa4 14.Qxc3 0-0 15.e3








This position is to be compared with the game Topalov-Carlsen mentioned above. The difference is that the moves ...h6 and Bh4 have been included, which I didn't notice at first. At first sight, it is difficult to know what this changes, but the next moves also follow the Topalov-Carlsen game, and prove that there is a difference in Black's favor. 15...a5 16.b5 Nxc5 17.Qxc5 Be6 18.Qd4 18.Qc3 Rac8 19.Qa1 Bg4 could make a difference, as the bishop on h4 would be hanging. 18...Qxa3 19.Be2 Qc1+ 20.Qd1 Qb2? A huge mistake. Black must take advantage as much as possible of White's misplaced King. 20...Qc3+! 21.Qd2 Qa1+! and maybe White should draw, as 22.Bd1 a4 seems very dangerous. 21.0-0 a4 22.Bg3! A good move. Now Black is obliged to weaken everything to prevent the very strong Be5. 22...f6 23.Nd4 Bf7 24.Bd3!








White now has a decisive attack based on Qg4 and Nf5. 24...a3 25.Nf5? Of course 25.Qg4+- first would be much more precise. 25...a2 For instance 25...g6 is less clear. 26.Qg4 Now Black has no defense. 26...g5 26...g6 also loses, for instance: 27.Nxh6+ Kh8 28.Nxf7+ Rxf7 29.Qxg6 Rd7 30.Qh5+ Kg8 31.Qg4+ Rg7 32.Qe6+ Kh8 33.Qxd5 a1Q 34.Qh5+ Kg8 35.Bc4+ Kf8 36.Bd6+ Re7 37.Qh8# 27.Nxh6+ Kg7 28.Qf5! Rh8 29.Nxf7 Kxf7








Now White has many paths to mate/win, but without time, there is actually nothing "obvious"! 30.Qg6+ A nice mate would have been: 30.Qxd5+ Kg7 31.Qd7+ Kh6 32.Qf5 Rag8 33.Bd6! followed by 33...-- 34.Bf8+ Rxf8 35.Qg6# 30...Ke7 31.Qg7+ Ke6 32.f4 32.e4!? wins for example. 32...gxf4 33.exf4?? 33.Qg4+ Ke7 34.Qxf4 was still winning, but was extremely hard to see, for instance: 34...a1Q 35.Qd6+ Kf7 36.Qxd5+ Kf8 37.Bd6+ Kg7 38.Qxb7+ Kh6 39.Bf4+ Kh5 40.Qf3+ Kh4 41.Qh3# 33...Qd4+ 34.Kh1 Qxd3 35.f5+ 35.Re1+ was a better try, as Black has to find 35...Kf5! (The automatic 35...Qe4 loses to 36.f5+ Kxf5 37.Rf1++-) 36.h3!? (36.Qd7+ Kg6 37.Qg4+=) 36...Rag8 37.Qd7+ Kg6 38.Qg4+= 35...Qxf5 36.Re1+ Qe4 37.Rxe4+ dxe4 38.Qg4+








Now Black would be wise to just take the draw. 38...Kd5 38...Kf7= 39.Qf5+ Kc4 40.Qxe4+ Kxb5? 40...Kb3 was still a draw according to the engine. 41.Qd5+ Now Black is lost! 41...Kb6 42.Qb3+ Kc6 43.Qc4+ Kd7 44.Qf7+ Kc6 45.Qxf6+ Kd5 46.Qe5+ Kc4 47.Qe4+ Kb3 48.Qxb7+ Kc2 49.Qe4+ Kb3 50.Qd3+ Kb4 51.Bd6+ Ka5 52.Qd5+ Kb6 53.Qc5+ Ka6 54.Qc6+ Ka5 55.Be5 Kb4 56.Qc3+ 1-0 [Click to replay]


The Kosintseva sisters fresh from a gold medal at the Olympiad were
unable to make much of a dent here.


French GMs Romain Edouard and Tigran Gharamian. Alas, both just
barely failed to make the quarter finals.


Jon Hammer and Judit Polgar

Pictures by Robert Fontaine

 
Video reports courtesy of Europe Echecs.


Links

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