Khanty-Mansiysk: Gata Kamsky in the Final

12/10/2007 – Comeback Kid, Brooklyn Boy – whatever you call him: Gata Kamsky defeated Magnus Carlsen of Norway in the second semifinal game of the FIDE World Cup to move into the final stage. There he will meet the winner of the match Alexei Shirov vs Sergey Karjakin, which produced a second draw today and thus goes into the tiebreaks. Full report with a portrait of Gata Kamsky.

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A total of 126 participants turned up on November 23 for the World Cup in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia, located about 1400 miles (2250 km) east of Moscow. The competition is taking place from November 24 to December 18.

Round six Game two (Monday, December 10th)

Gata Kamsky has knocked Magnus Carlsen out to move into the final of the World Cup. Before that he knocked out Ahmed Adli, Boris Avrukh, Kiril Georgiev, Peter Svidler and Ruslan Ponomariov. Time to take a quick look at his CV.

Gataulla Kamski was born on June 2, 1974 in Siberia. He was a chess prodigy, winning the under-20 Soviet Championship twice before he was 15. At that age he moved to the United States with his father Rustam, and at the age of 16 was already playing in the Interzonals, the first stage of the World Chess Championship cycle. His Elo rating at the time was 2650.

From 1993 Kamsky played in both the FIDE and PCA World Championship cycles. He defeated Viswanathan Anand in the quarter-finals in Sanghi Nagar in 1994 and went on to challeng reigning FIDE champion Anatoly Karpov, to whom he lost in Elista with a 7.5:10.5 score. In the PCA cycle he defeated Vladimir Kramnik in the quarter-finals in June, 1994, then Nigel Short in the semi-finals in September that year. He was finally stopped by Anand in Las Palmas, where he lost 4.5:6.5. Anand went on to play Kasparov.


Kamsky at the Elista Candidates Matches earlier this year

After this Gata Kamsky retired from chess and attended medical school. He abandoned this after a year and took up law. He played practically no rated games between 1997 and late 2004, returning to chess only briefly to take part in the 1999 FIDE Knockout World Championship in Las Vegas, where he was eliminated in the first round by Alexander Khalifman (who went on to win the title).


After his comeback in 2005

Kamsky's comeback started in 2004, when he played in a few rapid chess events, before returning to regular chess in the 2005 U.S. Championship, and then to the international circuit in 2006, when he came close to winning the very strong M-Tel Masters in Sofia (he was caught in the end by Veselin Topalov). Since then his successes have been steady and he has regained his old playing strength. He played in the FIDE Candidates in Elista this year, losing to Boris Gelfand in the second stage. Now he has qualified for the finals of the FIDE World Cup. Should he win that he has to face Veselin Topalov in a special match to determin who will challenge the World Champion (the winner of the 2008 match Anand vs Kramnik). Details of this rather complicated cycle can be found here.

Round six results

No.   Name Nat Rtng
G1
G2
R1 R2 B1 B2 SD Tot.
 1  Carlsen, Magnus   NOR 2714
½
0
          0.5
 Kamsky, Gata USA 2714
½
1
          1.5
 
 4  Shirov, Alexei ESP 2739
½
½
          1.0
 Karjakin, Sergey UKR 2694
½
½
          1.0

The games


The start of the fateful second game Gata Kamsky vs Magnus Carlsen

Kamsky,G (2714) - Carlsen,M (2714) [C43]
World Cup Khanty-Mansiysk RUS (6.2), 10.12.2007

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.d4 Nxe4 4.Bd3 d5 5.dxe5 Be7 6.0-0 Bg4 7.h3 Bh5 8.Re1 Nc6 9.Nc3N. The predessor game went 9.Bf4 g5 10.Bh2 g4 11.hxg4 Bxg4 12.Nc3 Nxf2 13.Kxf2 Bc5+ 14.Kf1 Nd4 15.Be2 Nxf3 16.Bxf3 Qh4 17.Qe2 Qxh2 18.Qb5+ c6 19.Qxc5 Bxf3 20.gxf3 Rg8 21.Qf2 Qh3+ 0-1 Schmider,B-Kresovic,V/Germany 1992. 9...Bg6 10.Bd2 Nxd2 11.Qxd2 d4 12.Ne4 0-0 13.a3 Qd5 14.Qf4 Rfe8 15.Re2 Bf8 16.Ng3 Bxd3 17.cxd3 Re6 18.Nh5! Rae8 19.Rae1 a5. Black is ignoring the threats on the kingside, but perhaps there was really nothing better he could do. 20.Qg4 Rg6 21.Nf4 Rxg4 22.Nxd5 Rg6








23.g4. Carlsen is in time trouble, Kamsky is playing difficult moves – here threatening to trap the black rook. After 23.Nxc7 White gets two pawns and probably a winning position. 23...Rc8 (23...Re7 24.Nb5 Rd7 25.Re4 Rd5 26.Nbxd4 Nxd4 27.Nxd4 Bc5 28.Ne2) 24.Nb5 Rd8 25.Re4 Bc5 26.Rc1 Bb6 27.Rc4 Re6 28.Nfxd4 Nxd4 29.Nxd4 and White is two pawns up. 23...Rd8?! Carlsen decides to give the exchange and try to set up a fortress. 24.Nf4 Rh6 25.g5 Re6 26.Nxe6 fxe6 27.Rc1 Rd5 28.Rc4 Bc5 29.h4 Bb6 30.Kg2 Ne7 31.h5 Rd8 32.Re4 Nf5 33.Nh4 Ne7 34.Kg3 g6 35.Kg4 Rd5 36.hxg6 hxg6 37.a4 Kf7 38.Rc1 Rd8 39.Rh1 Kg7 40.Ng2 Nf5 41.Nf4 Re8 42.Ree1 c5 43.Rh3.








No fortress, just an exchange down. White will bring his rooks to h7 and savage the black position. Only one thing to do: 1-0. [Click to replay]


Carlsen and Kamsky immersed in thought



Sergey Karjakin vs Alexei Shirov, with Magnus Carlsen looking on

Karjakin,Sergey (2694) - Shirov,A (2739) [C92]
World Cup Khanty-Mansiysk RUS (6.2), 10.12.2007
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 0-0 9.h3 Re8 10.d4 Bb7 11.Nbd2 Bf8 12.a4 Na5 13.Ba2 exd4 14.cxd4 c5 15.d5 c4 16.b4 cxb3 17.Bxb3 b4 18.Bc2 Bc8 19.Rb1 Rb8 20.Ba3 Bxh3 21.Bxb4 Bg4 22.Bd3 Ra8 23.Re3 Nb7 24.Qf1 Bxf3 25.Rxf3 Nc5 26.Bxc5 dxc5 27.Rb7 Rb8 28.Rxb8 Qxb8 29.Qb1 Qxb1+ 30.Bxb1 c4 31.Nxc4 Nxe4 32.Re3 Nd6 33.Rxe8 ½-½. [Click to replay]

All pictures by from Khanty by Eugene Atarov for the official World Cup web site

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