Wijk aan Zee 2009

(1) Short,N (2663) - L'Ami,E (2603) [C48]
Corus B Wijk aan Zee NED (3), 19.01.2009

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 Erwin usually defends the Spanish, often using the Berlin Wall, but in last year's Wijk aan Zee B Group, Short demolished him with the Evans' Gambit. L'Ami therefore heads for a Petroff, but is soon surprised by another 19th century weapon. 3.Nc3 Nc6 4.Bb5 Short was the first contemporary GM to revive the Four Knights, during the early 1990s. 4...Nd4 Rubinstein's Defence, which was largely responsible for killing off the Four Knights in the early 20th century. However, it soon becomes apparent that L'Ami is not too familiar with its finer points. 5.Nxe5!? The least popular choice for White in this position. The 1990s revival of the Four Knights concentrated on the moves 5.Ba4, 5.Bc4 and 5.0-0. 5...Nxb5?! [Already a perceptible inaccuracy. Theory recommends 5...Qe7 6.f4 Nxb5 7.Nxb5 d6 8.Nf3 Qxe4+ with equality. Speaking to reporters after the game, Short made a very interesting point about the cause of Black's defeat in this game. As he explained, many players nowadays, especially young players, are so used to rattling out huge amounts of pre-game opening preparation, that they are simply not used to thinking at a very early stage of the game. Here, after barely five minutes' play, L'Ami was already out of his book knowledge, and needed to start thinking deeply about the position. Instead, he played a couple of plausible-looking moves rather quickly, but they proved to be errors. In addition, the position is rather more critical than it appears, and by the time L'Ami started really thinking about the position, it was too late - he was already practically lost.] 6.Nxb5 c6 [Black already has problems regaining his pawn, since 6...Nxe4? 7.Qe2 is obviously terrible.] 7.Nc3 Qe7 8.Nf3 Nxe4 9.0-0 Nxc3 10.dxc3 d5 11.Bg5 The position is already a disaster for Black. As Bobby Fischer pointed out, annotating his game against Celle in My Sixty Memorable Games, " A mistake in these open games is always much more serious". Short goes on to dispose of his opponent in thoroughly convincing style, but his task was not especially difficult. 11...Qd6 12.Re1+ Be6 13.Nd4 c5 [Played after long thought, but the position is already gone. The main point is that the natural 13...Be7 walks into the cruncher 14.Nf5! eg. 14...Bxf5 15.Rxe7+ Kf8 16.Rxb7 with an extra pawn and an overwhelming position.] 14.Nxe6 fxe6 15.Qh5+ g6 16.Qg4 Kf7 [16...e5 17.Rad1 Bg7 18.Qf3 is equally hopeless.] 17.c4 d4 18.Qf3+ Kg8 19.Bf6 L'Ami had had enough punishment for one day. 1-0

(2) Sasikiran,K (2711) - Kasimdzhanov,R (2687) [D11]
Corus B Wijk aan Zee NED (3), 19.01.2009

1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Qc2 dxc4 5.Qxc4 Bg4 6.Nc3 Nbd7 7.Ng5 e6 8.f3 Bh5 9.e4 e5 10.Be3 Nb6 11.Qd3 Nfd7 12.d5 Bb4 13.dxc6 bxc6 14.h4 h6 15.Nh3 f6 16.Nf2 Bf7 17.Qc2 Qe7 18.Nd3 Nc4 19.Bf2 Ba5 20.0-0-0 Bb6 21.Re1 0-0 22.g3 Rfd8 23.Rh2 Rab8 24.f4 Nf8 25.Na4 Bd4 26.Nxe5 Nxe5 27.fxe5 Qxe5 28.Bc4 Bxc4 29.Qxc4+ Kh8 30.Qc2 Ne6 31.Rf1 Rb4 32.Be1 Qb5 33.Rf5 Qxa4 34.Bxb4 Qxb4 35.Rf1 Bxb2+ 0-1

(3) Howell,D (2622) - Bosboom,M (2418) [B01]
Corus C Wijk aan Zee NED (1), 17.01.2009

1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Qxd5 3.Nc3 Qd6 Already a typical Bosboom choice. Rattling out 20 moves of theory is not manuel's style, and he prefers to have his opponents thinking from as early a stage as does Nigel Short. 4.d4 Nf6 5.Bd3 a6 6.Nge2 Bg4 7.f3 Bh5 8.Bf4 Qb6 [8...Qd7 9.d5 Bg6 10.Qd2 Bxd3 11.Qxd3 g6 12.0-0-0 Bg7 13.Qc4 c6 14.d6 left White virtualy winning in Kasparov-Rogers, Rapid 2001] 9.g4 Bg6 10.g5 Nh5 11.Be3 e6 12.Ne4!? [12.Qd2 looks more natural.] 12...Nc6 13.Qd2 Nb4 14.Bc4 Qc6 15.Bb3 a5 16.a3 Nd5 17.Bf2 a4 18.Ba2 Nb6 19.Qd3 Be7 20.h4 h6 21.Rg1?! [White's position is already feeling a little over-stretched, and after this, this detriorate further. Probably 21.Be3 was better. ] 21...hxg5 22.hxg5 Ra5 23.0-0-0 Rxg5 24.Rh1 Rg2 25.Be3 Rh7!? A typical creative Bosboom move. The computer also likes it, but I am not sure many other human players would have played such a move. 26.Rdg1 Rxg1+ 27.Rxg1 Bf5 28.c4 Nf6 29.N2c3 Rh3 30.Qf1 Kf8 31.Ng5? [31.Ng3 keeps the position unclear.] 31...Rh2 32.Bd2 Qd7 Suddenly White's d4-pawn is dropping, and his position with it. 33.Rh1 Rxd2! Decisive. 34.Rh8+ [Or 34.Kxd2 Qxd4+ 35.Ke1 Qe3+ 36.Qe2 Qxg5 winning.] 34...Ng8 35.Bb1 Bxg5 Typical Bosboom - whatever the objective merots of his position, he manages to keep enough complications alive to bamboozle even so strong an opponent as Howell. 0-1

All games on this page as PGN

Generated with ChessBase 10
Download CBLight for free here