Linares R14: Topalov beats Kasparov, shares first

3/11/2005 – Actually Kasparov seems to have beaten himself, having missed clear drawing chances; and although both he and Topalov now have eight out of twelve, Kasparov wins Linares on tiebreak. Another shock: Vishy Anand lost to Adams with the white pieces. We bring you an updated report and video clip.

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The XXII Torneo Internacional de Ajedrez "Ciudad de Linares", a category 20 double round robin, is being held in the Spanish town of Linares and from February 23 until March 10 2005. During each round one player rests, and in addition there are full rest days on March 1st and 7th. The games start at 15:30h local time (CET = GMT 14:30h = 9:30 a.m. NY) in the Hotel Anibal. Live coverage of the event is expected on the official web site and on Playchess.com. We will be reporting daily on our news page.

Round fourteen


Preparing to catch Kasparov: Veselin Topalov

The final day in Linares saw exciting, turmultuous chess, with shock losses by the two top seeds. But just as people were about to get to work reporting on the games Garry Kasparov's shock announcement stopped everybody in their tracks. After thirty years of professional chess, twenty at the top of the ratings list, the world's number one has decided to retire from professional chess. The game he lost today against Veselin Topalov was the last we shall see, ever, in serious competition from Garry Kasparov.


Garry Kasparov arrives for the last game of his career

The loss was traumatic. Kasparov seemed to be coasting to a draw and a one-point lead over everybody else, when suddenly we saw the vigorous head-shaking and the look of utter despair and self-disgust on his face (oh dear, did we see this for the last time as well?). Obviously something had gone horribly wrong.

Topalov,V (2757) - Kasparov,G (2804) [B30]
XXII SuperGM Linares ESP (14), 10.03.2005
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 e5 4.Bc4 d6 5.d3 Be7 6.0-0 Nf6 7.Nh4 Nd4 8.g3 Bg4 9.f3 Be6 10.Bg5 Ng8 11.Bxe7 Nxe7 12.f4 exf4 13.Bxe6 fxe6 14.Rxf4 Kd7 15.Nf3 Rf8 16.Rxf8 Qxf8 17.Nxd4 cxd4 18.Ne2 Qf6 19.c3 Rf8 20.Nxd4 Nc6 21.Qf1

Black is under quite some pressure, and in this position Kasparov decided to trade down to a very dubious pawn ending. There was abject horror in the press center when he played 21...Qxf1+. While following the game on the Playchess server and listening to the comments of the GMs at the venue we gave the above move two question marks. After analysing with Fritz we changed that to a ?!, and then when doing some quick analysis with Veselin Topalov we decided to remove any commentary signs. The move of choice of the spectators, 21...Qd8, seems to give Black drawing chances after 21...Qd8 22.Nf3 Qb6+ 23.d4 Qxb2 24.Rb1 Qxc3 25.Rxb7+ Kd8 (25...Kc8 26.Rb3) 26.Rb3 Qc2, and Topalov showed us the line 21...Nxd4 22.Qxf6 Rxf6 23.cxd4 Rf3 24.Rd1 g5. For the moment all we can say is that the proverbial jury is still out on this one.

22.Rxf1 Rxf1+ 23.Kxf1 Nxd4 24.cxd4 d5 25.Kf2 Ke7 26.Kf3 Kf6.

27.h4? This was certainly worse than 27.Kg4 and, when Black plays ...g6 White has h3. That would appear to win the game for Topalov. Now Black apparently has 27...h6, a move that draws, according to Ljubojevic, who dominated the analysis in the press center. It was too long and convoluted to follow, but we did recognise that it ended in mutual zugzwang and a draw. However, Kasparov made it easy for Topalov: 27...g6? 28.b4 b5 29.Kf4 h6 30.Kg4 1-0.


On his way to losing the final game in his professional career

After the game Garry told us that he had completely lost touch with the tournament after his win against Michael Adams in round 12. "The whole of the second half of the event was dominated by the feeling that each game was the last I would play against that player," he said. "After I beat Adams I was unable to press against Anand, and in this final game against Topalov I lost all my sense of danger. I knew I had won the event, which is what I came here to do, and I played in a trance."


Discussing the endgame of their final encounter


Video: Veselin Topalov on beating Kasparov (broadband or dial-up)

Vishy Anand was also coasting against Michael Adams, whom he normally gives a very hard time with the white pieces (or shall we say in general?). Then to the dismay of his second, Georgian GM Elisbar Ubilava, the Indian chess genius gave up a pawn and slowly went the down to an Adams grind.


Vishy Anand, who got into a spot of trouble in the last round


Showing grim determination: Michael Adams

Anand,V (2786) - Adams,Mi (2741) [E15]
XXII SuperGM Linares ESP (14), 10.03.2005
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 e6 3.c4 b6 4.g3 Ba6 5.b3 Bb4+ 6.Bd2 Be7 7.Bg2 c6 8.Bc3 d5 9.Ne5 Nfd7 10.Nxd7 Nxd7 11.Nd2 0-0 12.0-0 Rc8 13.e4 b5 14.Re1 dxe4 15.Bxe4 bxc4 16.Nxc4 Nb6 17.Nxb6 axb6 18.Qc2 h6 19.a4 Qc7 20.Red1 Rfd8 21.Rac1 Qa7 22.Bb2 b5 23.Ra1 bxa4.

Now the obvious move is 24.Rxa4 (ask Fritz), but Anand played 24.bxa4, which loses a pawn to 24...Bf6 After 25.Qd2 c5 26.d5 Bxb2 27.Qxb2 Bb7 28.Qe5 Qa8 29.a5 Bxd5 30.Bxd5 exd5 Black has those two monster past pawns in the middle of the board, and White is fighting a hopeless battle. Fight Vishy did, but in the end the technique of a world top ten player will not relinquish the point. 31.a6 d4 32.Rd3 Rd7 33.h4 Qa7 34.Rb3 c4 35.Rb4 c3 36.Qf5 g6 37.Qd3 c2 38.Rc1 Rc3 39.Qd2 Qxa6 40.Rxc2 Qc6 41.Rbb2 Kh7 42.Qd1 h5 43.Kh2 Rc7 44.Rxc3 dxc3 45.Rc2 Qe4 46.Rc1 Kg7 47.Rc2 Rc8 48.Rc1 Rc5 49.Kg1 Kh7 50.Qd6 Rf5 51.Qd7 Rf3 52.Qa7 Qd5 0-1.

Peter Leko vs Francisco Vallejo Pons was interesting in as much as the former, who had drawn all his games so far in this event, was determined to take at least one full point home with him to Hungary. Play through this 67-mover to see Leko try it all the way down to bare kings (almost).


Analysts Ljubo Ljubojevic (standing) and Elisbar Ubilava


Okay, Paco, I was just checking you out!

Round 14 (Thursday, March 10, 2005)
Peter Leko
½-½
Francisco Vallejo
Veselin Topalov
1-0
Garry Kasparov
Viswanathan Anand
0-1
Michael Adams

Final standing

The above table gives the Sonneborn-Berger tiebreak results, which is normally used in round robin tournaments. In Linares another system was in place. Since both players have the same number of points, and the same number of wins (first tiebreak criterion), the winner is the player with most black wins. Kasparov won three games with black while Topalov had just one black win. That made Kasparov the overall winner in this tournament.

Linares by night

Impressions by Nadja Woisin


Schedule and results

Round 1 (Wednesday, February 23, 2005)
Veselin Topalov
1-0
Michael Adams
Peter Leko
½-½
Garry Kasparov
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
½-½
Francisco Vallejo
Round 2 (Thursday, February 24, 2005)
Garry Kasparov
½-½
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Michael Adams
½-½
Peter Leko
Viswanathan Anand
1-0
Veselin Topalov
Round 3 (Friday, February 25, 2005)
Peter Leko
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
½-½
Michael Adams
Francisco Vallejo
0-1
Garry Kasparov
Round 4 (Saturday, February 26, 2005)
Michael Adams
1-0
Francisco Vallejo
Viswanathan Anand
½-½
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Veselin Topalov
½-½
Peter Leko
Round 5 (Sunday, February 27, 2005)
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
½-½
Veselin Topalov
Francisco Vallejo
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Garry Kasparov
1-0
Michael Adams
Round 6 (Monday, February 28, 2005)
Viswanathan Anand
½-½
Garry Kasparov
Veselin Topalov
1-0
Francisco Vallejo
Peter Leko
½-½
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Round 7 (Wednesday, March 2, 2005)
Francisco Vallejo
½-½
Peter Leko
Garry Kasparov
½-½
Veselin Topalov
Michael Adams
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Round 8 (Thursday, March 3, 2005)
Michael Adams
½-½
Veselin Topalov
Garry Kasparov
½-½
Peter Leko
Francisco Vallejo
1-0
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Round 9 (Friday, March 4, 2005)
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
0-1
Garry Kasparov
Peter Leko
½-½
Michael Adams
Veselin Topalov
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Round 10 (Saturday, March 5, 2005)
Viswanathan Anand
½-½
Peter Leko
Michael Adams
½-½
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Garry Kasparov
1-0
Francisco Vallejo
Round 11 (Sunday, March 6, 2005)
Francisco Vallejo
½-½
Michael Adams
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
0-1
Viswanathan Anand
Peter Leko
½-½
Veselin Topalov
Round 12 (Tuesday, March 8, 2005)
Veselin Topalov
1-0
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Viswanathan Anand
½-½
Francisco Vallejo
Michael Adams
0-1
Garry Kasparov
Round 13 (Wednesday, March 9, 2005)
Garry Kasparov
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Francisco Vallejo
0-1
Veselin Topalov
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
½-½
Peter Leko
Round 14 (Thursday, March 10, 2005)
Peter Leko
½-½
Francisco Vallejo
Veselin Topalov
1-0
Garry Kasparov
Viswanathan Anand
0-1
Michael Adams

Links


Topics Linares 2005
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