Baku 2.2: Many tiebreaks

by Alejandro Ramirez
9/15/2015 – Fifteen of the thirty-two matches played in round two of the World Cup in Baku resulted in 1.0-1.0 ties and will be going into tiebreaks tomorrow. Three more 2700s have been sent home: Lu Shanglei got rid of his compatriot Wang Hao by securing a draw today, Harikrishna blundered a piece against his teammate Sethuraman while Navara could not tie the series vs. Guseinov. Round two.

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World Cup

10th September – 5th October

Baku, Azerbaijan

Round Two - Game Two

The first person to be eliminated today was David Navara. In a sharp King's Indian Defense (an odd choice for a game that you only need to draw), Gadir Guseinov was able to force a perpetual and that ended the Czech's tournament sojourn. Topalov's attack on the kingside was able to crash through Zhigalko's defenses and the Bulgarian #1 seed goes through to round three.

America's Sam Shankland

Nakamura and Shankland drew quickly again and will be going to rapid tiebreak. Also in tiebreak and from America is Onischuk, who was unable to hold his game against Karjakin. In a must-win game, the Russian player had enough faith in his technique to enter an opposite colored bishop endgame that he was eventually able to convert through crisp and precise play.

Onischuk couldn't earn his draw and will go to tiebreaks with Karjakin

Also from America are the third round qualifiers Caruana and So, who eliminated Mamedov and Balogh respectively. They had no real problems in their matches, though Caruana's position was unenviable at a certain point.

Ding Liren drew Inarkiev without questions and is through. In the Chinese derby between Lu Shanglei and Wang Hao the lower rated player advanced after holding his own today.

Lu Shanglei continues to impress. The character on his shirt is
appropriately named "Twisted Fate" from the game League of Legends.

Leko beat Wen Yang to qualify for round three, while Ivanchuk just had to draw against Rodshtein to pass. The Ukrainian gave a perpetual check in a winning position to clinch his pass.

Adams needed to win against Laznicka and he did:

[Event "FIDE World Cup 2015"] [Site "Baku AZE"] [Date "2015.09.15"] [Round "2.15"] [White "Adams, Michael"] [Black "Laznicka, Viktor"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B46"] [WhiteElo "2742"] [BlackElo "2676"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez,Alejandro"] [PlyCount "57"] [EventDate "2015.09.11"] [SourceDate "2015.02.07"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nc6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Nxc6 bxc6 7. Bd3 d5 8. O-O Nf6 9. Qf3 Be7 10. Qg3 O-O 11. Bh6 Ne8 12. Bf4 Bh4 13. Qf3 Be7 14. Na4 Nf6 15. b3 Qa5 16. e5 Nd7 17. Qg3 Re8 18. h4 c5 19. c4 d4 20. h5 {Adams' tournament life hangs on the success of this kingside attack.} Qc7 21. Rae1 Bf8 22. Bg5 g6 23. f4 Bg7 24. Qh4 Bb7 25. Kf2 $1 {Black is in some serious trouble now. The rook is swinging to the h-file reinforcing the attack. The even bigger issue, however, is that Black simply has no counterplay.} Rf8 $2 { This just accelerates defeat.} (25... Nf8 26. Bf6 $18) (25... Qc6 26. Be4 Qxe4 27. Rxe4 Bxe4 {looks desperate, but probably was already appropriate.}) 26. Rh1 f5 27. hxg6 hxg6 28. Qh7+ Kf7 29. Rh6 {Sometimes players have blindspots, and forget that one move that can cause an attack to crash through. The only reason I can imagine why Laznicka did not put up the appropriate amount of resistance is that he forgot Rh6 was playable.} 1-0

MVL made it look easy and he beat Sargissian by going for an anti-Berlin that he has employed in the past. His bishop was far more powerful than Black's knight and he converted with excellent technique in the endgame.

Ilya Smirin preparing his tea for Radjabov. They are going to tiebreaks, so he will need plenty of it.

Kovalyov beat his former teammate, Mareco in fine style:

[Event "FIDE World Cup 2015"] [Site "Baku AZE"] [Date "2015.09.15"] [Round "2.30"] [White "Kovalyov, Anton"] [Black "Mareco, Sandro"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "E17"] [WhiteElo "2616"] [BlackElo "2599"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez,Alejandro"] [PlyCount "61"] [EventDate "2015.09.11"] [SourceDate "2015.02.07"] 1. Nf3 Nf6 2. c4 b6 3. g3 Bb7 4. Bg2 e6 5. O-O Be7 6. d4 O-O 7. Re1 Na6 8. b3 c5 9. Bb2 d5 10. cxd5 Nxd5 11. a3 Rc8 12. e4 Nf6 13. Nc3 Re8 14. Rc1 Bf8 15. Qe2 $5 {Inviting some real complications. Black has to take on d4, otherwise he is just worse after a trade on c5.} cxd4 16. Nxd4 Qxd4 {A free knight, why not take it? Actually this is a queen sacrifice, but Black gets plenty for it.} 17. Nd5 Rxc1 18. Rxc1 (18. Bxd4 $2 Rxe1+ 19. Qxe1 exd5 {is too much material.}) 18... Qxb2 19. Qxb2 exd5 {White has a queen, but Black has three pieces. This is a very unusual balance that more often than not favors the three pieces. However, White has some initiative that must be dealt with.} 20. e5 Nd7 $6 ( 20... Ng4 $1 21. Qe2 (21. f4 Bc5+ {is certainly not the same.})) 21. f4 Ndc5 { Black's pieces are rather clumsy.} 22. Qc2 Ne6 23. b4 b5 24. Bf1 Rd8 25. Qd3 { White's pawns on the kingside threaten to advance, meanwhile Black's knights fail to find support while his bishops are hemmed in.} Nec7 26. Qd4 Ra8 {a sad move to make, but Qxa7 was simply lethal.} 27. f5 g6 28. e6 $1 {Black's position collapses.} fxe6 (28... Bg7 29. exf7+ Kxf7 30. Rxc7+ Nxc7 31. Qf4 { with a decisive attack.}) 29. Qe5 Rc8 30. Bxb5 exf5 31. Bxa6 {Black is simply pinned everywhere and material losses cannot be avoided.} (31. Bxa6 Nxa6 32. Qe6+ {for example.}) 1-0

Speaking of teammates, Sethuraman was able to beat Harikrishna after the higher rated Indian blundered badly in a difficult position:

[Event "FIDE World Cup 2015"] [Site "Baku AZE"] [Date "2015.09.15"] [Round "2.14"] [White "Sethuraman, S.P."] [Black "Harikrishna, Pentala"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C67"] [WhiteElo "2640"] [BlackElo "2737"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez,Alejandro"] [PlyCount "91"] [EventDate "2015.09.11"] [SourceDate "2015.02.07"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Nxe4 5. d4 Nd6 6. Bxc6 dxc6 7. dxe5 Nf5 8. Qxd8+ Kxd8 9. h3 b6 10. Rd1+ Ke8 11. Nc3 h6 12. b3 Bb7 13. Bb2 Rd8 14. Rxd8+ Kxd8 15. Rd1+ Kc8 16. g4 Ne7 17. Kh2 Ng6 18. Kg3 Be7 19. Ne4 c5 20. Re1 h5 21. Nfg5 h4+ 22. Kh2 Rf8 23. f3 Bc6 24. Kg1 Nf4 25. Bc1 Nd5 26. a3 f5 27. exf6 Nxf6 28. Ne6 Rg8 29. N4g5 Bd6 30. Bf4 a5 31. Bxd6 cxd6 32. Nf4 a4 33. Nf7 axb3 34. cxb3 Kd7 (34... g5 35. Nh5 Nxh5 36. gxh5 Bd5 $1 37. Nxd6+ Kd7 {is not at all easy to convert for White, though he does have the upper hand.}) (34... Nd5 $5) 35. Rd1 d5 36. g5 $1 Nh7 37. Nxd5 Ke6 $2 {Blundering a piece!} (37... Bxd5 38. Rxd5+ Ke7 {and Black is simply down a pawn after} 39. g6 Nf6 40. Re5+ {but there are still chances.}) 38. g6 Nf6 39. Nxf6 gxf6 40. Nd8+ {Oops! The deadly fork costs Black a bishop and the game.} Kf5 41. Nxc6 Rxg6+ 42. Kf2 Rg3 43. Ne7+ Kf4 44. Nd5+ Ke5 45. Rd3 b5 46. Nc3 {Impressive run by Sethuraman who goes on to the third round.} 1-0

Bruzon had to win against Kramnik to reach the tiebreaks, but not only did he have no
chance, he was probably lost in the final position

Both Kramnik and Dominguez secured draws to go on to the next phase. Meanwhile Eljanov and Granda both closed off their series 2-0 by beating Ipatov and Henriquez Villagra.

Eljanov closed powerfully with 2-0

Many matches will be going into tiebreak tomorrow, so stay tuned!

Aronian will play against Areschenko in one of fifteen tiebreaks tomorrow

Nguyen Ngoc Trong goes on to tiebreaks

Mamedyarov couldn't break Hou Yifan and will also play tomorrow

All Round 2.2 Games

Round Two Pairings

Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
V. Topalov (BUL) 2816
½
1
             
1.5
Sergei Zhigalko (BLR) 2657
½
0
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Lu Shanglei (CHN) 2599
1
½
             
1.5
Hao Wang (CHN) 2712
0
½
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Peter Svilder (RUS) 2727
½
½
             
1.0
LiviuDieter Nisipeanu (GER) 2678
½
½
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Teimour Radjabov (AZE) 2738
½
½
             
1.0
Ilia Smirin (ISR) 2655
½
½
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Ding Liren (CHN) 2782
1
½
             
1.5
Ernesto Inarkiev (RUS) 2660
0
½
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
David Navara (CZE) 2728
0
½
             
0.5
Gadir Guseinov (AZE) 2634
1
½
             
1.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Levon Aronian (ARM) 2765
½
½
             
1.0
Alexander Areschenko (UKR) 2661
½
½
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Wei Yi (CHN) 2734
1
0
             
1.0
Yuri Vovk (UKR) 2628
0
1
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Anish Giri (NED) 2793
½
½
             
1.0
Alexander Motylev (RUS) 2649
½
½
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Peter Leko (HUN) 2707
½
1
             
1.5
Wen Yang (CHN) 2620
½
0
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9 Pts
Julio Granda (PER) 2667
1
½
              2.0
Cristobal Henriquez Villagra 2511
0
½
              1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Radoslaw Wojtaszek (POL) 2741
1
½
             
1.5
Vladislav Artemiev (RUS) 2675
0
½
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Wesley So (USA) 2773
1
1
             
2.0
Csaba Balogh (HUN) 2657
0
0
             
0.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Nikita Vitiugov (RUS) 2725
½
½
             
1.0
Le Quang Liem (VIE) 2697
½
½
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Evgeny Tomashevsky (RUS) 2758
½
½
             
1.0
Ngoc Truong Son Nguyen (VIE) 2634
½
½
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
M. Vachier-Lagrave 2744
½
1
             
1.5
Gabriel Sargissian (ARM) 2679
½
0
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Hikaru Nakamura (USA) 2814
½
½
             
1.0
Samuel Shankland (USA) 2656
½
½
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Laurent Fressinet (FRA) 2702
½
½
             
1.0
Ian Nepomniachtchi (RUS) 2705
½
½
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Michael Adams (ENG) 2742
0
1
             
1.0
Viktor Laznicka (CZE) 2676
1
0
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Lenier Dominguez (CUB) 2732
1
½
             
1.5
Hrant Melkumyan (ARM) 2622
0
½
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Alexander Grischuk (RUS) 2771
½
½
             
1.0
Vladimir Fedoseev (RUS) 2674
½
½
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Pavel Eljanov (UKR) 2717
1
1
             
2.0
Alexander Ipatov (TUR) 2625
0
0
             
0.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Dmitry Jakovenko (RUS) 2491
½
½
             
1.0
Amin Bassem (EGY) 2636
½
½
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Vassily Ivanchuk (UKR) 2726
1
½
             
1.5
Maxim Rodshtein (ISR) 2673
0
½
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Fabiano Caruana (USA) 2808
1
½
             
1.5
Rauf Mamedov (AZE) 2657
0
½
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Sandro Mareco (ARG) 2599
½
0
             
0.5
Anton Kovalyov (CAN) 2616
½
1
             
1.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
P. Harikrishna 2737
½
0
             
0.5
S.P. Sethuraman 2640
½
1
             
1.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Vladimir Kramnik (RUS) 2777
1
½
             
1.5
Lazaro Batista Bruzon (CUB) 2659
0
½
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Dmitry Andreikin (RUS) 2720
1
½
             
1.5
Anton Korobov (UKR) 2700
0
½
             
0.5
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Sergey Karjakin (RUS) 2762
0
1
             
1.0
Alexander Onischuk (USA) 2662
1
0
             
1.0
Player Rtg
G1
G2
G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9
Pts
Yu Yangyi (CHN) 2721
½
½
             
1.0
Igor Lysyj (RUS) 2671
½
½
             
1.0

Photos and information from the official website and the tournament's Facebook page

Links

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Grandmaster Alejandro Ramirez has been playing tournament chess since 1998. His accomplishments include qualifying for the 2004 and 2013 World Cups as well as playing for Costa Rica in the 2002, 2004 and 2008 Olympiads. He currently has a rating of 2583 and is author of a number of popular and critically acclaimed ChessBase-DVDs.
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ChessPlease ChessPlease 9/16/2015 09:31
Based on what I see today, it looks like Levon Aronian would actually look good in a "rocker" shirt...it's better than his usual fare ;).
genem genem 9/16/2015 08:26
This format of two-game micro-matches, with inevitable numerous speed chess games to break ties, is as much a speed chess tournament as a genuine long time control tournament.

When speed chess plays this big a role in a qualifier for challengers toward a world title, it should be only for a speed chess world title.
Mosdef Mosdef 9/16/2015 08:25
@aighearach: get a life
hserusk hserusk 9/16/2015 07:43
I don't feel the love for Ramirez here.
Love the way he stirs up this pc crowd!;)
Aighearach Aighearach 9/16/2015 07:17
A real shame that Hou YiFan is missing from the table. She isn't the highest rated in the tournament, but she's one of the biggest stars with a lot of fans!

Also the comment "Mamedyarov couldn't break Hou Yifan" seems rather inexplicable. She had white, and they were even in the match, so why would he be expected to? Did he have a big advantage that slipped away? Looking at the game... no. It was an even game. It is Hou Yi Fan who failed to break Mamedyarov, if you really have to go towards that metaphor for the game. It might be too quiet a game to bother, though.

The mistake is a mistake, but the lack of respect towards a subset of players is still continuing even though there have been steady complaints in the comments. Maybe history and momentum aren't enough, maybe it is time for new sources of chess reporting.
Boon-Swee Yen Boon-Swee Yen 9/16/2015 02:27
Hou Yifan-Mamedyarov are missing from the Round Two Pairings table.
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