Tata 10: Aronian and Saric win a round in advance

1/25/2014 – Demonstrating a fantastic return to form, Aronian gave Dominguez no chance as he beat him in an impressive game to win the Masters a round in advance. With 8.0/10, and a two point lead, he is untouchable, but he can still make history if he wins tomorrow. Second place is all but decided. Saric also won the Challengers a round in advance by beating Yu Yangyi. Report with GM commentary.

The 76th edition of the Tata Steel Chess Tournament takes place from 10 to 26 January 2014. The top players will compete in two groups (previously there were three), with twelve players in each, instead of fourteen. The structure of the amateur tournaments remains unchanged. Both groups start on January 11th 2014, with all rounds starting at 13:30h (1:30 p.m.) local time, except for the last round on January 26th, which begins at 12:00h. Two rounds will be played in Amsterdam and Eindhoven and will start at 14:00. The time controls are 100 minutes for 40 moves, followed by 50 minutes for 20 moves, then 15 minutes for the remaining moves with 30 seconds cumulative increment for each move starting from the first move.

Round ten - Masters

Group A: Round 10 - Saturday Jan. 25
Anish Giri - Sergey Karjakin
½-½
Leinier Dominguez - Levon Aronian
0-1
Loek van Wely - Boris Gelfand
0-1
Pentala Harikrishna - Wesley So
½-½
Fabiano Caruana - Arkadij Naiditsch
0-1
Richard Rapport - Hikaru Nakamura
0-1

Full report to follow...

Rapport-Nakamura

Rapport's odd openings continue as he chose a delayed version of the Larsen Attack with 1.b3, opting to play it instead after 1.Nf3 c5. This proved to be a bad idea as Nakamura quickly seized the initiative. He made an enterprising sacrifice with 15...Nxe3!? which would have completely tied White's position down if taken. However Rapport didn't accept the gift, but ended up with a completely lost position instead.

 

Hikaru Nakamura shares his impressions of his game

Caruana, Fabiano - Naidtisch, Arkadij 0-1

A tense struggle was on the board as Black's awkward pieces were held together by a powerful passed pawn on c3. It is unclear which side was better until Caruana horribly blundered with his 32nd move. It is not so clear exactly what Caruana missed, but he is known to make these kinds of mistakes once in a while, costing him very precious points.

 

The German grandmaster explains how it feels to score his first win in the tournament

Van Wely - Gelfand, Boris 0-1

Gelfand's pair of bishops compensated for his weakened pawn structure, but I have the feeling once the light squared bishops came off the board White had a slightly more pleasant position. Van Wely quickly went for the counterattack on the kingside pounding on Black's weak h5 pawn, unfortunately for him it was not weak enough to take and his major pieces ended up tangled on the kingside without play. A further disregard for king safety ended up with the Dutch's king mated on h4.

Short interview with Gelfand after the game 

Giri, Anish - Karjakin, Sergey ½-½

not much to say here. draw.

Anish explains why he was not especially happy to draw 

Harikrishna, Pentala - So, Wesley ½-½

So's Berlin proves to be solid again and Harikrishna was not even close to breaking through at any moment.

Pentala Harikrishna agrees that Wesley So equalized very quickly 

Dominguez, Leinier - Aronian, Levon 0-1

[Event "76th Tata Steel Chess Masters"] [Site "Wijk aan Zee"] [Date "2014.01.25"] [Round "10"] [White "Dominguez Perez, Leinier"] [Black "Aronian, Levon"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "C77"] [WhiteElo "2754"] [BlackElo "2803"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez, Alejandro"] [PlyCount "84"] [EventDate "2014.??.??"] [EventCountry "NED"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. d3 {This line has become quite popular recently. Sick of fighting against the Marshall, the Breyer and the long variations in the main lines of the Ruy Lopez, this move aims for a quieter and less ambitious play whil still carrying a serious sting. } b5 7. Bb3 O-O 8. Nc3 d6 9. a3 {Black was ready to play Na5 trapping the bishop on b3, therefore this prophylactic move is played.} Na5 (9... Bg4 10. Be3 Nd4 11. Bxd4 exd4 12. Nd5 Nd7 $1 {Equalized rather well in the stem game Ramirez-Tomashevsky from Tromso World Cup last year. It has been repeated twice since then with two draws.}) 10. Ba2 Be6 11. Bg5 c5 12. b4 (12. Bxf6 Bxf6 13. Nd5 {resulted in wins for White in Motylev-Sonntag and Kulatos-Nyback, but White's advantage should be minimal after the correct} c4 $1 {Which has not been tried yet.}) 12... Nc6 13. Nd5 Bxd5 14. exd5 Nd4 15. bxc5 Nxf3+ 16. Qxf3 dxc5 {White's pair of bishops advantage is not terribly significant due to the close nature of the position. However it does seem that White has a more pleasant situation.} 17. Rfe1 Nd7 18. Bd2 Bd6 19. a4 f5 20. Bb3 $6 {Certainly underestimating Aronian's counterplay.} (20. Qh3 {was far more prudent, reducing the sting from any potential e4.}) 20... e4 $1 {A brilliant attack follows this move.} 21. dxe4 (21. Qh3 {was again, safer, but Dominguez does not believe in Aronian's play.}) 21... c4 22. Ba2 Qh4 23. e5 (23. g3 Ne5 $1 24. Qg2 Qh5 {is very unpleasant for White, who regrets putting his bishop on a2. Or even spending a tempo to keep it alive as he did in the opening, for that matter!}) 23... Bxe5 24. g3 Qg4 $1 {Very precise, the weakness of the light squares is the most important feature of this position.} 25. Qxg4 fxg4 26. c3 $6 (26. Rad1 {was necessary to activate some pieces.}) 26... Bf6 $1 (26... b4 $6 27. Bxc4 bxc3 28. Be3 {only serves to activate White's bishops.}) 27. Bb1 ( 27. axb5 axb5 {is completely embarassing for the bishop on a2, who has no squares and will soon be taken.}) 27... b4 28. Re3 Rad8 29. Bf5 h5 30. Rd1 b3 { Black's passed pawn guarantees him a winning advantage and Aronian converts without problems.} 31. Bc1 Bg5 32. Be6+ Kh8 33. Re2 Bxc1 34. Rxc1 Nc5 35. a5 Rfe8 36. Kf1 g6 37. Rce1 Kg7 {Even now White is still completely tied up!} 38. d6 Rxe6 39. Rxe6 Nxe6 40. Rxe6 Rd7 $1 {Preparing Kf7, followed by the destruction of White's only hope - his passed pawn.} 41. Re8 Rxd6 42. Ke2 Rd3 0-1

An incredible result that not only clinched the win for Aronian a round in advance, but takes him to a lofty 2833 Elo on the live ratings, with space for a bit of history. In effect, if Aronian wins his game tomorrow against Van Wely, he will finish with 9.0/11 and 82% score which would surpass Carlsen's record of 81% when he won with 10.5/13.

Daniel King's Play of the day

The secret to Aronian's success in his own words

Replay Masters games

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Masters standings after eleven rounds

Round twelve - Challengers

Group B: Round 12 - Saturday Jan. 25
Zhao Xue - Jan-Krzysztof Duda
½-½
Etienne Goudriaan - Kayden Troff
1-0
Baadur Jobava - Dimitri Reinderman
0-1
Merijn van Delft - Jan Timman
½-½
Radek Wojtaszek - Benjamin Bok
½-½
Anna Muzychuk - Sabino Brunello
1-0
Ivan Saric - Yu Yangyi
1-0

Jobava's normal opening did not net him anything this time, but through some clever knight maneuvers he obtained a big advantage. Reinderman sacrificed an exchange which Jobava strangely did not take - this resulted in a position in which White's knight on c4 was quite powerful. His problem was that Reinderman was allowed to open the kingside, and once this happened White's knight went from being useful to useless as he could not defend his own king.

Yu Yangyi obtained good play against Saric from a Paulsen Sicilian and the game seemed to be headed towards a draw auntil the Chinese grandmaster decided that he was going to make a useless clump of pieces on the a-file and which had no way of defending a vulnerable kingside. Saric advances to an impressive 9.5/12

Wojtaszek was in the worse side of an opposite colored bishop endgame but never had any real losing chances. Muzychuk won a very double edged game against Brunello when the Italian missed a pretty tactic that simply cost him the game.

Timman had serious winning chances agianst Van Delft, and arguably even in the final position he could have pressed on for a win, but a draw was sufficient for the Dutch legend and it gives Saric the pass to the Master's tournament next year.

Goudriaan's strange version of the Najdorf paid off as Troff was unable to find a productive plan while his opponent simply marched up the board on the kingside which ended up mating Black.

Duda and Zhao Xue's game started out wild and crazy with a pawn sacrifice followed by a counter pawn sacrifice, but it fizzled out to a drawn opposite colored bishop endgame with some rooks.

Replay Challengers games

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Challengers standings after twelve rounds

 

Schedule and results

Group A: Round 1 - Saturday Jan. 11
Leinier Dominguez - Anish Giri
½-½
Loek van Wely - Sergey Karjakin
0-1
Pentala Harikrishna - Levon Aronian
½-½
Fabiano Caruana - Boris Gelfand
1-0
Richard Rapport - Wesley So
0-1
Hikaru Nakamura - Arkadij Naiditsch
1-0
Group A: Round 2 - Sunday Jan. 12
Anish Giri - Arkadij Naiditsch
1-0
Wesley So - Hikaru Nakamura
½-½
Boris Gelfand - Richard Rapport
0-1
Levon Aronian - Fabiano Caruana
1-0
Sergey Karjakin - Pentala Harikrishna
½-½
Leinier Dominguez - Loek van Wely
½-½
Group A: Round 3 - Monday Jan. 13
Loek van Wely - Anish Giri
½-½
Pentala Harikrishna - Leinier Dominguez
1-0
Fabiano Caruana - Sergey Karjakin
1-0
Richard Rapport - Levon Aronian
½-½
Hikaru Nakamura - Boris Gelfand
½-½
Arkadij Naiditsch - Wesley So
½-½
Group A: Round 4 - Wednesday Jan. 15
Anish Giri - Wesley So
½-½
Boris Gelfand - Arkadij Naiditsch
½-½
Levon Aronian - Hikaru Nakamura
1-0
Sergey Karjakin - Richard Rapport
1-0
Leinier Dominguez - Fabiano Caruana
1-0
Loek van Wely - Pentala Harikrishna
½-½
Group A: Round 5 - Friday Jan. 17
Pentala Harikrishna - Anish Giri
0-1
Fabiano Caruana - Loek van Wely
1-0
Richard Rapport - Leinier Dominguez
0-1
Hikaru Nakamura - Sergey Karjakin
½-½
Arkadij Naiditsch - Levon Aronian
0-1
Wesley So - Boris Gelfand
1-0
Group A: Round 6 - Saturday Jan. 18
Anish Giri - Boris Gelfand
½-½
Levon Aronian - Wesley So
1-0
Sergey Karjakin - Arkadij Naiditsch
1-0
Leinier Dominguez - Hikaru Nakamura
½-½
Loek van Wely - Richard Rapport
½-½
Pentala Harikrishna - Fabiano Caruana
½-½
Group A: Round 7 - Sunday Jan. 19
Fabiano Caruana - Anish Giri
½-½
Richard Rapport - Pentala Harikrishna
1-0
Hikaru Nakamura - Loek van Wely
0-1
Arkadij Naiditsch - Leinier Dominguez
½-½
Wesley So - Sergey Karjakin
½-½
Boris Gelfand - Levon Aronian
½-½
Group A: Round 8 - Tuesday Jan. 21
Anish Giri - Levon Aronian
½-½
Sergey Karjakin - Boris Gelfand
1-0
Leinier Dominguez - Wesley So
1-0
Loek van Wely - Arkadij Naiditsch
1-0
Pentala Harikrishna - Hikaru Nakamura
1-0
Fabiano Caruana - Richard Rapport
1-0
Group A: Round 9 - Thursday Jan. 23
Richard Rapport - Anish Giri
½-½
Hikaru Nakamura - Fabiano Caruana
½-½
Arkadij Naiditsch - Pentala Harikrishna
0-1
Boris Gelfand - Leinier Dominguez
½-½
Wesley So - Loek van Wely
1-0
Levon Aronian - Sergey Karjakin
1-0
Group A: Round 10 - Saturday Jan. 25
Anish Giri - Sergey Karjakin
½-½
Leinier Dominguez - Levon Aronian
0-1
Loek van Wely - Boris Gelfand
0-1
Pentala Harikrishna - Wesley So
½-½
Fabiano Caruana - Arkadij Naiditsch
0-1
Richard Rapport - Hikaru Nakamura
0-1
Group A: Round 11 - Sunday Jan. 26
Hikaru Nakamura - Anish Giri  
Arkadij Naiditsch - Richard Rapport  
Wesley So - Fabiano Caruana  
Boris Gelfand - Pentala Harikrishna  
Levon Aronian - Loek van Wely  
Sergey Karjakin - Leinier Dominguez  

Grandmaster Group B

Group B: Round 1 - Saturday Jan. 11
Etienne Goudriaan - Zhao Xue
0-1
Baadur Jobava - Jan-Krzysztof Duda
½-½
Merijn van Delft - Kayden Troff
0-1
Radek Wojtaszek - Dimitri Reinderman
0-1
Anna Muzychuk - Jan Timman
½-½
Ivan Saric - Benjamin Bok
½-½
Yu Yangyi - Sabino Brunello
0-1
Group B: Round 2 - Sunday Jan. 12
Zhao Xue - Sabino Brunello
½-½
Benjamin Bok - Yu Yangyi
1-0
Jan Timman - Ivan Saric
½-½
Dimitri Reinderman - Anna Muzychuk
½-½
Kayden Troff - Radek Wojtaszek
½-½
Jan-Krzysztof Duda - Merijn van Delft
1-0
Etienne Goudriaan - Baadur Jobava
0-1
Group B: Round 3 - Monday Jan. 13
Baadur Jobava - Zhao Xue
1-0
Merijn van Delft - Etienne Goudriaan
1-0
Radek Wojtaszek - Jan-Krzysztof Duda
½-½
Anna Muzychuk - Kayden Troff
1-0
Ivan Saric - Dimitri Reinderman
1-0
Yu Yangyi - Jan Timman
1-0
Sabino Brunello - Benjamin Bok
0-1
Group B: Round 4 - Tuesday Jan. 14
Zhao Xue - Benjamin Bok
1-0
Jan Timman - Sabino Brunello
1-0
Dimitri Reinderman - Yu Yangyi
1-0
Kayden Troff - Ivan Saric
0-1
Jan-Krzysztof Duda - Anna Muzychuk
0-1
Etienne Goudriaan - Radek Wojtaszek
0-1
Baadur Jobava - Merijn van Delft
1-0
Wednesday, Jan. 15 – Free day
Group B: Round 5 - Thursday Jan. 16
Merijn van Delft - Zhao Xue
½-½
Radek Wojtaszek - Baadur Jobava
0-1
Anna Muzychuk - Etienne Goudriaan
1-0
Ivan Saric - Jan-Krzysztof Duda
1-0
Yu Yangyi - Kayden Troff
½-½
Sabino Brunello - Dimitri Reinderman
1-0
Benjamin Bok - Jan Timman
½-½
Group B: Round 6 - Friday Jan. 17
Zhao Xue - Jan Timman
0-1
Dimitri Reinderman - Benjamin Bok
½-½
Kayden Troff - Sabino Brunello
½-½
Jan-Krzysztof Duda - Yu Yangyi
0-1
Etienne Goudriaan - Ivan Saric
0-1
Baadur Jobava - Anna Muzychuk
½-½
Merijn van Delft - Radek Wojtaszek
0-1
Group B: Round 7 - Saturday Jan. 18
Radek Wojtaszek - Zhao Xue
1-0
Anna Muzychuk - Merijn van Delft
½-½
Ivan Saric - Baadur Jobava
½-½
Yu Yangyi - Etienne Goudriaan
1-0
Sabino Brunello - Jan-Krzysztof Duda
0-1
Benjamin Bok - Kayden Troff
½-½
Jan Timman - Dimitri Reinderman
1-0
Group B: Round 8 - Sunday Jan. 19
Zhao Xue - Dimitri Reinderman
0-1
Kayden Troff - Jan Timman
½-½
Jan-Krzysztof Duda - Benjamin Bok
½-½
Etienne Goudriaan - Sabino Brunello
½-½
Baadur Jobava - Yu Yangyi
1-0
Merijn van Delft - Ivan Saric
½-½
Radek Wojtaszek - Anna Muzychuk
½-½
Monday, Jan. 20 – Free day
Group B: Round 9 - Tuesday Jan. 21
Anna Muzychuk - Zhao Xue
½-½
Ivan Saric - Radek Wojtaszek
1-0
Yu Yangyi - Merijn van Delft
1-0
Sabino Brunello - Baadur Jobava
1-0
Benjamin Bok - Etienne Goudriaan
½-½
Jan Timman - Jan-Krzysztof Duda
1-0
Dimitri Reinderman - Kayden Troff
1-0
Group B: Round 10 - Wednesday Jan. 22
Zhao Xue - Kayden Troff
½-½
Jan-Krzysztof Duda - D. Reinderman
1-0
Etienne Goudriaan - Jan Timman
0-1
Baadur Jobava - Benjamin Bok
1-0
Merijn van Delft - Sabino Brunello
0-1
Radek Wojtaszek - Yu Yangyi
½-½
Anna Muzychuk - Ivan Saric
½-½
Thursday, Jan. 23 – Free day
Group B: Round 11 - Friday Jan. 24
Ivan Saric - Zhao Xue
1-0
Yu Yangyi - Anna Muzychuk
1-0
Sabino Brunello - Radek Wojtaszek
0-1
Benjamin Bok - Merijn van Delft
1-0
Jan Timman - Baadur Jobava
½-½
Dimitri Reinderman - Etienne Goudriaan
1-0
Kayden Troff - Jan-Krzysztof Duda
0-1
Group B: Round 12 - Saturday Jan. 25
Zhao Xue - Jan-Krzysztof Duda
½-½
Etienne Goudriaan - Kayden Troff
1-0
Baadur Jobava - Dimitri Reinderman
0-1
Merijn van Delft - Jan Timman
½-½
Radek Wojtaszek - Benjamin Bok
½-½
Anna Muzychuk - Sabino Brunello
1-0
Ivan Saric - Yu Yangyi
1-0
Group B: Round 13 - Sunday Jan. 26
Yu Yangyi - Zhao Xue  
Sabino Brunello - Ivan Saric  
Benjamin Bok - Anna Muzychuk  
Jan Timman - Radek Wojtaszek  
Dimitri Reinderman - Merijn van Delft  
Kayden Troff - Baadur Jobava  
Jan-Krzysztof Duda - Etienne Goudriaan  

Commentary schedule on Playchess

Day Date Round English German
Sunday January 26 Round 11 Daniel King Klaus Bischoff
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