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Tata R04: Carlsen, Anand and Caruana score

1/15/2013 – On Sunday all games were (mostly exciting) draws, today by contrast there were five decisive games. At the top Magnus Carlsen took Pentala Harikrishna to the cleaners in typical style; world number five Fabiano Caruana defeated Ivan Sokolov, and World Champion Vishy Anand, facing Levon Aronian with black, played what might surely go down as the game of the year. Full report with GM analysis.
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75. Tata Steel Chess Tournament

January 2013
  1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30        

This event is taking place from January 12-27. The venue is as usual the traditional De Moriaan Center in the Dutch sea resort of Wijk aan Zee,. The tournament has taken place since 1938 and was known as the Corus Chess Tournament. The Indian company Tata Steel bought Corus (for US $7.6 billion) in 2006 and the chess event way renamed accordingly. The tournament has three Grandmaster Groups, which have 14 players and are held as full round robins (each competitor plays against every other). The rate of play for all three groups is 100 minutes for 40 moves, then 50 minutes for 20 moves and finally 15 minutes for the rest of the game, with a 30 seconds/move increment starting with the first move of the game.

Round four report

By GM Alejandro Ramirez

Group A: Round 4 - Tuesday January 15
Loek van Wely - Erwin L'Ami
Wang Hao - Hou Yifan
Hikaru Nakamura - Sergey Karjakin
Anish Giri - Peter Leko
Fabiano Caruana - Ivan Sokolov
Levon Aronian - Vishy Anand
Magnus Carlsen - Pentala Harikrishna

What a round! The spectators must be very pleased, they saw everything they could ask for today! Magnus played like he was the best player in the world, Anand annihilated his opponent, Nakamura… well, let’s just look at them one by one.

The only dull game today was between Giri and Leko. An unusual Nimzo met a familiar treatment and the game went nowhere. But all the rest of the games, oh my, what action!

First of all, van Wely chose the Trompowsky to perhaps surprise Erwin L’Ami (above with his wife Alina), who reacted very aggressively. However his exchange sacrifice started with 17… Rhg8?! was suspicious, to say the least (actually, I’m giving the benefit of the doubt and assuming he sacrificed it instead of blundering), and van Wely converted without too much trouble.

Wang Hao played a model game in a classical Nimzo line. His powerful moves d5! and c4! back to back secured him a better structure and the advantage of having a powerful bishop against a dubious knight. Hou Yifan tried very hard, but the position was just not comfortable at all. After defending for a long time she blundered in what was already a very difficult position, and Wang Hao took the Chinese match up.

Caruana outplayed Sokolov in a Ruy Lopez. After building the strongest center ever it was simply impossible for the Dutch GM to hold on to all sides of the board, and after giving up two pawns the contest was over.

Nakamura-Karjakin was not the most exciting game over all, but the finale more than made up for it. After winning a pawn early on, White was under immense pressure from Black’s heavy pieces. This eventually led to a queen endgame in which Nakamura had a bunch of pawns, but Karjakin had a powerful passed d-pawn. Perhaps with not the most exact play Hikaru let his opponent advance the pawn too much, and was forced to give a perpetual himself.

Carlsen proved why he is world #1 again by playing a pretty whatever opening against Harikrishna. Shortly after the opening phase the Norwegian launched a rapid kingside attack. He shed pawns like they weren’t worth anything, and in exchange for them obtained a powerful passer on e6. His positional dominance allowed him to pluck Harikrishna’s queenside pawns one by one, and with the positional advantage of the e6 passed pawn and the material advantage the game was quite over.

The highlight of the day, however, is Aronian-Anand. A game better experienced by going through it yourself, as it is only 23 moves long and a complete demolition. There is plenty of analysis given below!

Photos by Nadja Wittmann

Anand's postgame analysis of his win over Aronian

Anand: "This could easily be one of the best games I have played. To win a game like this against Levon, who is my nightmare opponent, as you probably know, is definitely wonderful. Funnily enough both my black wins against him have been real classics. I don't win that often, but when I do it is at least a good one." Watch the two video statements given immediately after the end of the game.

Viswanathan Anand
Levon Aronian

Levon Aronian (see video statement below). "I think I ran into a theoretical trap. I was not aware of Bc5, which is very strong. Vishy said he had prepared it for somebody else. I should study openings better." Anand reminds us of the similarity of this game to Rotlevy-Rubinstein: "It was the same concept: bishop on b6, bishop on b7, and Rubinstein's version was even Rxc3 h3, but essentially the same idea: Qh4 and Qxh3 – all these ideas work."

The following annotation was sent to us from Wijk aan Zee by GM Efstratios Grivas:

[Event "Tata Steel"]
[Site "Wijk aan Zee"]
[Date "2013.01.15"]
[Round "4"]
[White "Aronian, Levon"]
[Black "Anand, Viswanathan"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "D46"]
[WhiteElo "2802"]
[BlackElo "2772"]
[Annotator "Grivas,Efstratios"]
[PlyCount "46"]
[EventDate "2013.01.15"]
[EventCountry "NED"]
[SourceDate "2012.04.16"]

1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 e6 5. e3 Nbd7 6. Bd3 dxc4 7. Bxc4 b5 8. Bd3
Bd6 9. O-O O-O 10. Qc2 Bb7 11. a3 Rc8 {All well-known moves by now...} 12. Ng5
({White has tried} 12. b4 {but after} c5 $1 13. bxc5 Bxf3 14. gxf3 Nxc5 15.
dxc5 Rxc5 16. f4 Nd5 17. Bb2 Nxc3 18. Bxc3 Qc7 19. Rfc1 Rc8 20. Bxh7+ Kh8 21.
Bd3 Rxc3 22. Qxc3 Qxc3 23. Rxc3 Rxc3 24. Bxb5 Bxa3 {the draw is near, as in
Topalov,V-Kasimdzhanov,R London 2012.}) 12... c5 $1 ({A strong novelty. Anand
stated that this was his preparation for his match vs. Boris Gelfand for the
FIDE WC in 2012. Previously} 12... Bxh2+ 13. Kxh2 Ng4+ 14. Kg1 Qxg5 15. f3 Ngf6
16. b4 $44 {had been seen in Wojtaszek,R-Negi,P Germany 2012. He also stated
that he didn't remembered all the details in his analyses, but netherless it
wasn't that hard to work them out!}) 13. Nxh7 (13. Bxh7+ {was the obvious
alternative - Anand said that 'we found compensation everywhere'. A sample
line could be} Kh8 14. f4 cxd4 15. exd4 Qb6 $44 {.}) 13... Ng4 $1 14. f4 $6 ({
In view of what happened, I think that White should have opted for} 14. h3 {.
But then} Bh2+ 15. Kh1 Qh4 {looks quite fine for Black:} 16. Be4 Bxe4 17. Qxe4
f5 18. Qxe6+ Kxh7 19. Qxd7 {and now Black can force a draw with} Bb8 20. Kg1
cxd4 21. exd4 Bh2+ ({or play for more with} 21... Rce8 $5) 22. Kh1 Bb8 $11 {.})
14... cxd4 15. exd4 ({After} 15. Nxf8 Bxf8 16. exd4 Ndf6 17. h3 Qxd4+ 18. Kh1
Bc5 $1 19. hxg4 Nxg4 {Black's attack should decide - the black queen will
finally land on the h-file!}) 15... Bc5 $1 {A great move, easily overlooked!}
16. Be2 $2 ({Good or bad White had to opt for} 16. dxc5 Nxc5 17. Nxf8 (17. Qe2
Qd4+ 18. Kh1 Nxd3 19. Qxg4 Kxh7 20. Qg3 a6 $17) 17... Nxd3 18. h3 Qd4+ 19. Kh1
Ndf2+ 20. Rxf2 Nxf2+ 21. Kh2 Kxf8 {, where Black has the more pleasant
position but White retains fair chances to hold.}) 16... Nde5 $3 ({Anand
doesn't seem to care about Aronian's pawns - his light pieces are dancing
around them! Note that this is the third black piece under attack! Also that}
16... Bxd4+ 17. Kh1 Nf2+ 18. Rxf2 Bxf2 19. Nxf8 Nxf8 {would be 'just' better
for Black!}) 17. Bxg4 (17. fxe5 Qxd4+ 18. Kh1 Qg1+ $1 19. Rxg1 Nf2#) ({or} 17.
Nxf8 Qxd4+ 18. Kh1 Qg1+ 19. Rxg1 Nf2# {was the point of 16... Nde5!!.}) 17...
Bxd4+ 18. Kh1 Nxg4 19. Nxf8 (19. Ng5 {fails to} f5 20. h3 Rf6 {and White is
helpless...}) 19... f5 $1 ({Anand said that he was very pround of this move.
Now the black queen is ready to come to the h-file.} 19... Qh4 $2 {would be
too naive:} 20. Qh7+ Qxh7 21. Nxh7 Kxh7 22. h3 {.}) 20. Ng6 {Stopping ...Qh4
for the moment...} Qf6 {'To be honest I didn't see a defence' said Anand...}
21. h3 Qxg6 22. Qe2 Qh5 23. Qd3 $6 ({The endgame is lost after} 23. Rf3 Nf2+
24. Kh2 Bxf3 25. Qxf3 Qxf3 26. gxf3 Nd3 {. White decided that he had seen
enough...}) 23... Be3 $1 {And it's over, as 24...Qxh3+ cannot be met... Anand
reminded us of the similarity of this game to Rotlewi-Rubinstein: 'It was the
same concept: bishop on b6, bishop on b7, and Rubinstein's version was even ...
Rxc3-h3, but essentially the same idea: ...Qh4 and ...Qxh3 - all these ideas
work'. The game is given for replay in the dropdown menu on the top left of
this JavaScript player.} 0-1

[Event "Lodz GM"]
[Site "Lodz"]
[Date "1907.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Rotlewi, Georg A"]
[Black "Rubinstein, Akiba"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "D40"]
[Annotator "Efstratios Grivas"]
[PlyCount "50"]
[EventDate "1907.??.??"]
[EventCountry "POL"]
[SourceDate "2012.04.16"]

1. d4 d5 2. Nf3 e6 3. e3 c5 4. c4 Nc6 5. Nc3 Nf6 6. dxc5 Bxc5 7. a3 a6 8. b4
Bd6 9. Bb2 O-O 10. Qd2 Qe7 11. Bd3 dxc4 12. Bxc4 b5 13. Bd3 Rd8 14. Qe2 Bb7 15.
O-O {White's experiments in the opening 'paid off' with the loss of two tempi!
Black is on the move and already has in hand the extra placement of a rook on
d8.} Ne5 $1 {In this symmetrical position it is rather important to be the
first to generate an initiative by opening up lines and diagonals, in other
words it is most important to be the first to offer the exchange of a pair of
knights.} 16. Nxe5 Bxe5 17. f4 $6 ({White weakens his position too much. He
should have played} 17. Rfd1 $1 Rac8 (17... Qc7 18. Rac1 $1 Bxh2+ 19. Kh1 Qb8
20. Nb1 Be5 21. Bxh7+ Nxh7 22. Rxd8+ Qxd8 23. Bxe5) 18. Rac1 h5 $5 {.}) 17...
Bc7 18. e4 (18. Rad1 e5 {was already much better for Black.}) 18... Rac8 19. e5
$6 (19. Rad1 {was a must, although I do not really like White's position after}
Bb6+ 20. Kh1 h5 $1 {.}) 19... Bb6+ 20. Kh1 Ng4 $1 {A bolt from the blue!} 21.
Be4 ({The black knight is untouchable:} 21. Qxg4 $2 Rxd3 {and ...Rxc3 or}) (21.
Ne4 Rxd3 $1 22. Qxd3 Bxe4 23. Qxe4 Qh4 24. h3 Qg3 $1 25. hxg4 Qh4# {or,
finally,}) (21. Bxh7+ Kxh7 22. Qxg4 Rd2 $19 {.}) 21... Qh4 (21... Nxh2 {would
have done the job too! Black's knight proved quite active!}) 22. g3 ({The
alternative was} 22. h3 Rxc3 23. Bxc3 (23. Bxb7 Rxh3+ 24. gxh3 Qxh3+ 25. Qh2
Qxh2# {or}) (23. Qxg4 Rxh3+ 24. Qxh3 Qxh3+ 25. gxh3 Bxe4+ 26. Kh2 Rd2+ 27. Kg3
Rg2+ 28. Kh4 Bd8+ 29. Kh5 Bg6#) 23... Bxe4 24. Qxg4 (24. Qxe4 Qg3 $19) 24...
Qxg4 25. hxg4 Rd3 26. Kh2 (26. Rac1 Rh3#) 26... Rxc3 $19 {.}) 22... Rxc3 $1 23.
gxh4 (23. Bxc3 Bxe4+ 24. Qxe4 Qxh2# {or}) (23. Bxb7 Rxg3 24. Rf3 (24. Bf3 Nxh2
$19) 24... Rxf3 25. Bxf3 Nf2+ 26. Kg1 (26. Kg2 Qh3+ 27. Kg1 Ne4+ 28. Kh1 Ng3#)
26... Ne4+ 27. Kf1 Nd2+ 28. Kg2 Nxf3 29. Qxf3 (29. Kxf3 Qh3+ 30. Ke4 Rd3 $3 31.
Qxd3 Qg2+ 32. Qf3 Qc2+ 33. Qd3 Qc6+) 29... Rd2+ $19 {are wonderful variations,
proving the validity of Black's attack.}) 23... Rd2 $3 {The hidden point of
Black's queen sacrifice.} 24. Qxd2 ({There was no salvation anymore:} 24. Qxg4
Bxe4+ 25. Rf3 Rxf3 $19 {or}) (24. Bxc3 Rxe2 25. Rf2 Bxe4+ 26. Kg1 Bxf2+ 27. Kf1
Bf3 28. Rd1 Nxh2# {or, finally,}) (24. Bxb7 Rxe2 25. Bg2 Rh3 $1 $19 {.}) 24...
Bxe4+ 25. Qg2 Rh3 $3 (25... Rh3 {And White had to resign:} 26. Rf3 (26. Rf2
Bxf2 27. Qxe4 Rxh2#) 26... Bxf3 27. Qxf3 Rxh2# {. This was Rubinstein's
'Immortal Game'.}) 0-1

GM Danny King Play of the Day – Aronian vs Anand

And in case you can't get enough of this game, here's analysis by Kingscrusher Tryfon Gavriel

Current standings

GM Danny King Play of the Day –

To follow soon...

Replay all the games of the round on our JavaScript player

Results of the B and C Groups

Group B: Round 4 - Tuesday January 15
Robin van Kampen - Nils Grandelius
Alexander Ipatov - Jan Smeets
Arkadij Naiditsch - Daniil Dubov
Jan Timman - Maxim Turov
Pedrag Nikolic - Sergey Tiviakov
Richard Rapport - Sergei Movsesian
Romain Edouard - Sipke Ernst
Group C: Round 4 - Tuesday January 15
Alexandra Goryachkina - Twan Burg
Oleg Romanishin - Mark van der Werf
Miguoel Admiraal - Hjorvar Gretarsson
David Klein - Krikor Mekhitarian
Alexander Kovchan - Igor Bitensky
Fernando Peralta - Lisa Schut
Robin Swinkels - Sabino Brunello

Commentary schedule

There is full broadcast of all games on the official site and on the Playchess server, which will provide live audio commentary of the most interesting games (free for Premium members) starting at 15:00h for each round, 14:00h for the final round. Commentary begins at approx. 3 p.m. and lasts 2 to 2½ hours, with breaks in between. A round-up show is provided at 8 PM server time. Commentary is available, by the following experts:

16.01.2012 Free day  
17.01.2012 Round 5 Daniel King
18.01.2012 Round 6 Maurice Ashley
19.01.2012 Round 7 Lawrence Trent
20.01.2012 Round 8 Lawrence Trent
21.01.2012 Free day  
22.01.2012 Round 9 Yasser Seirawan
23.01.2012 Round 10 Daniel King
24.01.2012 Free day  
25.01.2012 Round 11 Yasser Seirawan
26.01.2012 Round 12 Yasser Seirawan
27.01.2012 Round 13 Daniel King

Interviews with players after round four

Loek van Wely

Hikaru Nakamura
Magnus Carlsen
Jeroen van den Berg
Fabiano Caruana

Anish Giri


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