Baku R1: Grischuk and Kamsky win with black

4/22/2008 – First blood in the first round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku, Azerbaijan, was drawn by Alexander Grischuk and Gata Kamsky, who defeated Ivan Cheparinov and Ernesto Inarkiev respectively, with the black pieces. The other five games were drawn. But even the shortest game, a 25-mover between Mamedyarov and Svidler, was a tense encounter. Report on round one.

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First FIDE Grand Prix in Baku

The first FIDE Grand Prix tournament is taking place in Baku, Azerbaijan, from April 20th to May 6th, 2008. There are thirteen rounds and two rest days (April 26 and May 1st). The event is part of a series of six tournaments to be held over two years (2008-2009). 21 top world players are selected to compete in these tournaments, with each player contracting to participate in exactly four of these tournaments. The winner of the Grand Prix series at the end of 2009 will play the winner of the World Cup held in 2009 in an eight game match to become the challenger to the World Champion in a match to be held in the third quarter of 2010.
 

Round one report

Round 1: Monday, April 21st

Ernesto Inarkiev 
0-1
 Gata Kamsky
Shak. Mamedyarov 
½-½
 Peter Svidler
Magnus Carlsen 
½-½
 Wang Yue
Vugar Gashimov 
½-½
 Etienne Bacrot
Teimour Radjabov 
½-½
 Michael Adams
Ivan Cheparinov 
0-1
 Alex. Grischuk
Sergey Karjakin 
½-½
 David Navara

Mamedyarov-Svidler lasted just 25 moves, but contained its share of surprises. Svidler played the King's Indian (instead of his regular Gruenfeld), Mamedyarov went for the Four Pawns Attack, Svidler pulled out an ancient move, 6...e5, giving White an extra pawn but getting very active play. The game ended in a perpetual.


Peter Svidler, Russian GM from St Petersburg

Radjabov-Adams was a very balanced Ruy Lopez Exchange in which Black neutralized White's initiative and then gained some pressure himself on the kingside. Sensing the danger in time, Radjabov simplified and eliminated all of his opponent's threats. The draw came in 39 moves.

Carlsen-Wang Yue saw the young Norwegian avoid the main line of the Ruy Lopez Berlin and opt for a lengthy battle with suble middlegame manoeuvres. The fierce tactical battle in the center eventually resulted in an equal position. Magnus Carlsen, the top seed in this event, tried for a while in the endgame, but Wang Yue defended very well and managed to draw in the end.

Karjakin-Navara became exciting at move 12, a black novelty from which Karjakin profited, challenging his opponent from both sides. The Ukrainian GM came very close to winning, but didn't have enough time to calculate the crucial move.

Karjakin,Sergey (2732) - Navara,D (2672) [C88]
FIDE GP Baku AZE (1), 21.04.2008
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 0-0 8.h3 Bb7 9.d3 d6 10.a3 Qd7 11.Nc3 Rfe8 12.Ne2 d5 13.exd5 Nxd5 14.Ng3 Bf8 15.c3 Kh8 16.Bd2 f6 17.Bc2 f5 18.a4 g6 19.axb5 axb5 20.Rxa8 Bxa8 21.b4 Bg7 22.Bb3 h6 23.Nh4 Kh7 24.Nxg6 Kxg6 25.Bxd5 Qxd5 26.Qh5+ Kh7 27.Qxe8 Nd4

Now 28.Ne4 looks strong, but Karjakin was short on time and decided to play the safer 28.f3. Unfortunately this allows 28...Nxf3+! forcing a perpetual. 29.gxf3 Qxf3 30.Ne4 Bxe4 31.dxe4 Qg3+ 32.Kf1 Qf3+ 33.Kg1 Qg3+ 34.Kf1 Qf3+ 35.Kg1 ½-½.

Gashimov-Bacrot started as a quiet Ruy Lopez, but became very interesting after the excellent move 15.Bxf6!, which gains total control over the white central squares. White kept on improving his position and although Bacrot stubbornly resisted, he was unable to answer all the threats.

Gashimov,V (2679) - Bacrot,E (2705) [C88]
FIDE GP Baku AZE (1), 21.04.2008
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 0-0 8.h3 Bb7 9.d3 d6 10.a3 Na5 11.Ba2 c5 12.Nbd2 Nc6 13.Nf1 Bc8 14.Bg5 Be6 15.Bxf6 Bxf6 16.Ne3 Bg5 17.Nd5 Bh6 18.b4 Rc8 19.bxc5 dxc5 20.a4 Qd6 21.axb5 axb5 22.Nc3 b4 23.Nd5 Ne7 24.Bc4 Nxd5 25.exd5 Bxd5 26.Nxe5 Bxc4 27.Nxc4 Qc6 28.Qh5 Bf4 29.Ra7 Bb8 30.Rae7 Bd6 31.R7e4 Rfd8 32.Qf3 Bf8 33.h4 Rb8

Both players overlooked the relatively simple 34.Qxf7+! Kxf7 35.Ne5+ Kg8 36.Nxc6 which give White an exchange and a pawn for an easy win. After 34.h5? Gashimov had to work hard to keep on the attack, and in the end got nothing more than a draw. 34...Qc7 35.Nd2 h6 36.g3 Qd7 37.Kg2 Re8 38.Rxe8 Rxe8 39.Rxe8 Qxe8 40.Qd5 Kh8 41.Nc4 Kg8 42.Ne5 Qe6 43.Qxe6 fxe6 44.Kf3 Bd6 45.Ke4 Kf8 46.f4 Ke7 47.g4 Kf8 48.g5 Ke8 49.gxh6 gxh6 50.Ng4 Bf8 51.f5 Ke7 52.f6+ Ke8 53.Ke5 Kd7 54.Kf4 Kd8 55.Kf3 Kd7 56.Ke3 Kd8 57.Kf4 Kc7 58.Ke4 Kd8 59.Ne5 Ke8 60.Nc4 Kd8 61.Ke5 Kd7 62.Nb6+ Kc7 63.Nc4 Kd7 64.Nb6+ Kc7 65.Nc4 ½-½.

Inarkiev-Kamsky, a Breyer Ruy Lopez, was generally considered the best game of the round. Over twenty moves were theory, then came some manoeuvring, and Kamsky played the slightly risky 26...f5. He then sacrificed a pawn and launched an attack across the center. Inarkiev reacted very well, giving a piece in return for three pawns, and was winning at some point. But then came errors and, just after the time control, a classical blunder.

Inarkiev,E (2684) - Kamsky,G (2726) [C95]
FIDE GP Baku AZE (1), 21.04.2008
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 Nb8 10.d4 Nbd7 11.Nbd2 Bb7 12.Bc2 Re8 13.Nf1 Bf8 14.Ng3 g6 15.a4 c5 16.d5 c4 17.Bg5 h6 18.Be3 Nc5 19.Qd2 h5 20.Bg5 Be7 21.Ra3 Rb8 22.Kh1 Nh7 23.Be3 Bf6 24.Rea1 Bg7 25.Qe2 Bc8 26.Nf1 f5 27.axb5 axb5 28.exf5 gxf5 29.Ng3 Nd3 30.Nxh5 f4 31.Nxg7 Kxg7 32.Ba7 Rb7 33.Bxd3 cxd3 34.Qxd3 e4 35.Bd4+ Nf6 36.Qd1 exf3 37.Qxf3 Kg6 38.Qxf4 Nh5 39.Qh2 Rbe7 40.Qg1 Re2 41.Ra8 Qh4 42.Rb8 Kh6 43.Rb6?? Missing the following combination completely (43.Qf1 was required).

43...Bxh3! 44.Rxd6+. White cannot take: 44.gxh3 Qxh3+ 45.Qh2 Re1+ 46.Rxe1 Rxe1 mate! 44...Kh7 45.g3. Now Black forces mate. 45...Bg2+ 46.Kxg2 Qxg3+ 47.Kf1 Qh3+ 48.Qg2 Ng3+ 0-1 because of 49.Kg1 Re1+ 50.Rxe1 Rxe1+ 51.Qf1 Rxf1 mate. Well spotted and excellently calculated by Gata Kamsky.

Cheparinov-Grischuk was unusual because the Bulgarian grandmaster, one of the great preparation artists of contemporary chess, forgot a move in the line he had chosen to play, and paid dearly for this lapse.

Cheparinov,I (2696) - Grischuk,A (2716) [C19]
FIDE GP Baku AZE (1), 21.04.2008
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 c5 5.a3 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Ne7 7.Qg4 cxd4 8.Qxg7 Rg8 9.Qxh7 Qc7 10.Ne2 Nbc6 11.f4 Bd7 12.Qd3 dxc3 13.Nxc3 a6 14.Rb1 Na5 15.h4 Nf5 16.Rh3 0-0-0 17.h5 Nc4 18.Rb4 Bc6 19.Ne2 Bb5 20.a4 Qc5

Here, we are told, Cheparinov forgot his prepared move 21.Ba3 and instead played 21.Qc3. This opened the was for a vigorous attack by Grischuk, who took the full point off the Topalov-second. 21...d4 22.Qb3 Na5 23.Rxb5 Nxb3 24.Rxc5+ Nxc5 25.Ng1 Rg3 26.Ba3 d3 27.Rxg3 Nxg3 28.cxd3 Nxa4 29.Ne2 Nxh5 30.g4 Rxd3 31.gxh5 Rxa3 32.h6 Ra1+ 33.Kf2 Rd1 34.h7 Rd8 35.Nd4 Nc5 36.Nf3 Kd7 37.f5 exf5 38.Bh3 Ke7 39.Bxf5 a5 40.Bb1 a4 41.Nd4 Rh8 42.Nf5+ Kf8 0-1.


FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov speaks at the opening ceremony


The players, officials and general public listen to his words

All pictures from FIDE.com

Schedule and results

Round 1: Monday, April 21st

Ernesto Inarkiev 
0-1
 Gata Kamsky
Shak. Mamedyarov 
½-½
 Peter Svidler
Magnus Carlsen 
½-½
 Wang Yue
Vugar Gashimov 
½-½
 Etienne Bacrot
Teimour Radjabov 
½-½
 Michael Adams
Ivan Cheparinov 
0-1
 Alex. Grischuk
Sergey Karjakin 
½-½
 David Navara

Round 2: Tuesday, April 22nd

Gata Kamsky 
-
 David Navara
Alex. Grischuk 
-
 Sergey Karjakin
Michael Adams 
-
 Ivan Cheparinov
Etienne Bacrot 
-
 Teimour Radjabov
Wang Yue 
-
 Vugar Gashimov
Peter Svidler 
-
 Magnus Carlsen
Ernesto Inarkiev 
-
 Shak. Mamedyarov
GamesReport

Round 3: Wednesday, April 23rd

Shak. Mamedyarov 
-
 Gata Kamsky
Magnus Carlsen 
-
 Ernesto Inarkiev
Vugar Gashimov 
-
 Peter Svidler
Teimour Radjabov 
-
 Wang Yue
Ivan Cheparinov 
-
 Etienne Bacrot
Sergey Karjakin 
-
 Michael Adams
David Navara 
-
 Alex. Grischuk
GamesReport

Round 4: Thursday, April 24

Gata Kamsky 
-
 Alex. Grischuk
Michael Adams 
-
 David Navara
Etienne Bacrot 
-
 Sergey Karjakin
Wang Yue 
-
 Ivan Cheparinov
Peter Svidler 
-
 Teimour Radjabov
Ernesto Inarkiev 
-
 Vugar Gashimov
Shak. Mamedyarov 
-
 Magnus Carlsen
GamesReport

Round 5: Friday, April 25th

Magnus Carlsen 
-
 Gata Kamsky
Vugar Gashimov 
-
 Shak. Mamedyarov
Teimour Radjabov 
-
 Ernesto Inarkiev
Ivan Cheparinov 
-
 Peter Svidler
Sergey Karjakin 
-
 Wang Yue
David Navara 
-
 Etienne Bacrot
Alex. Grischuk 
-
 Michael Adams
GamesReport

Round 6: Sunday, April 27th

Gata Kamsky 
-
 Michael Adams
Etienne Bacrot 
-
 Alex. Grischuk
Wang Yue 
-
 David Navara
Peter Svidler 
-
 Sergey Karjakin
Ernesto Inarkiev 
-
 Ivan Cheparinov
Shak. Mamedyarov 
-
 Teimour Radjabov
Magnus Carlsen 
-
 Vugar Gashimov
GamesReport

Round 7: Monday, April 28th

Vugar Gashimov 
-
 Gata Kamsky
Teimour Radjabov 
-
 Magnus Carlsen
Ivan Cheparinov 
-
 Shak. Mamedyarov
Sergey Karjakin 
-
 Ernesto Inarkiev
David Navara 
-
 Peter Svidler
Alex. Grischuk 
-
 Wang Yue
Michael Adams 
-
 Etienne Bacrot
GamesReport

Round 8: Tuesday, April 29th

Etienne Bacrot 
-
 Gata Kamsky
Wang Yue 
-
 Michael Adams
Peter Svidler 
-
 Alex. Grischuk
Ernesto Inarkiev 
-
 David Navara
Shak. Mamedyarov 
-
 Sergey Karjakin
Magnus Carlsen 
-
 Ivan Cheparinov
Vugar Gashimov 
-
 Teimour Radjabov
GamesReport

Round 9: Wednesday, April 30th

Teimour Radjabov 
-
 Gata Kamsky
Ivan Cheparinov 
-
 Vugar Gashimov
Sergey Karjakin 
-
 Magnus Carlsen
David Navara 
-
 Shak. Mamedyarov
Alex. Grischuk 
-
 Ernesto Inarkiev
Michael Adams 
-
 Peter Svidler
Etienne Bacrot 
-
 Wang Yue
GamesReport

Round 10: Friday, May 2nd

Gata Kamsky 
-
 Wang Yue
Peter Svidler 
-
 Etienne Bacrot
Ernesto Inarkiev 
-
 Michael Adams
Shak. Mamedyarov 
-
 Alex. Grischuk
Magnus Carlsen 
-
 David Navara
Vugar Gashimov 
-
 Sergey Karjakin
Teimour Radjabov 
-
 Ivan Cheparinov
GamesReport

Round 11: Saturday, May 3rd

Ivan Cheparinov 
-
 Gata Kamsky
Sergey Karjakin 
-
 Teimour Radjabov
David Navara 
-
 Vugar Gashimov
Alex. Grischuk 
-
 Magnus Carlsen
Michael Adams 
-
 Shak. Mamedyarov
Etienne Bacrot 
-
 Ernesto Inarkiev
Wang Yue 
-
 Peter Svidler
GamesReport

Round 12: Sunday, May 4th

Gata Kamsky 
-
 Peter Svidler
Ernesto Inarkiev 
-
 Wang Yue
Shak. Mamedyarov 
-
 Etienne Bacrot
Magnus Carlsen 
-
 Michael Adams
Vugar Gashimov 
-
 Alex. Grischuk
Teimour Radjabov 
-
 David Navara
Ivan Cheparinov 
-
 Sergey Karjakin
GamesReport

Round 13: Monday, May 5th

Sergey Karjakin 
-
 Gata Kamsky
David Navara 
-
 Ivan Cheparinov
Alex. Grischuk 
-
 Teimour Radjabov
Michael Adams 
-
 Vugar Gashimov
Etienne Bacrot 
-
 Magnus Carlsen
Wang Yue 
-
 Shak. Mamedyarov
Peter Svidler 
-
 Ernesto Inarkiev
GamesReport
Tuesday, May 6th
Departure

Links

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