Biel 2009: Alekseev beats Morozevich, Ivanchuk leads

by ChessBase
7/26/2009 – Talk about mercurial and unpredictable: after winning the first two games in the Biel Chess Festival Alexander Morozevich lost in round four to the youngest participant, Fabiano Caruana, and in round six to Russian GM Evgeny Alekseev. "Moro" is now at 50%, together with three other players. Vassily Ivanchuk leads with 3.5/6 points. Round six report.

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The 42nd Biel International Chess Festival is taking place from July 18th to 31st 2009. There are ten different tournaments (open, rapid, blitz, youth, Chess 960). The main event is a Category 19 double round robin tournament with six players averaging 2716 Elo points and 28.3 years of age.

Participants: Vassily Ivanchuk, Evgeny Alekseev, Boris Gelfand, Fabiano
Caruana, Alexander Morozevich, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave

Round six

Fabiano Caruana vs Boris Gelfand was a solid Petroff in which Black equalised comfortably and drew the game in just 22 moves.

Five draws and one loss put Boris Gelfand at the bottom of the table

Playing 60 points over his 2670 rating: Fabiano Caruana

Vassily Ivanchuk had a clear advantage in an Averbakh Variation of the Modern Defence, when he overlooked a tactical blow on move 27.

Ivanchuk,V (2703) - Vachier Lagrave,M (2703) [A10]
GM Biel SUI (6), 25.07.2009
1.c4 g6 2.e4 e5 3.Nf3 Bg7 4.d4 exd4 5.Nxd4 Nc6 6.Be3 Nge7 7.Nc3 d6 8.Nxc6 Nxc6 9.Be2 0-0 10.Qd2 f5 11.exf5 Bxf5 12.0-0 Qf6 13.Rad1 Kh8 14.Rfe1 Nb4 15.Rc1 Na6 16.Bf1 Rae8 17.f3 Nb4 18.Bf2 Nc6 19.Rxe8 Rxe8 20.b3 Qf7 21.Nd5 a6 22.Rd1 Be6 23.h3 h6 24.Bd3 Ne5 25.Be4 g5 26.a4 Rf8 27.a5?

27...Bxh3 28.gxh3 Nxf3+ 29.Bxf3 Qxf3 30.Re1 Qxh3 and Black has three pawns for the piece. Ivanchuk keeps trying, but the game is a draw. 31.Qe3 Rf3 32.Qe8+ Rf8 33.Qe3 Rf3 34.Qe8+ Rf8 35.Qe6 Qf3 36.Re2 Qd3 37.Ne7 Kh7 38.Qe4+ Qxe4 39.Rxe4 Re8 40.Kg2 Bf8 41.Nd5 ½-½.

The real drama in round six came from the following game.

Alexander Morozevich (left) at the start of his game against Evgeny Alekseev

Alekseev,Evgeny (2714) - Morozevich,A (2751) [B17]
GM Biel SUI (6), 25.07.2009
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nd7 5.Nf3 Ngf6 6.Nxf6+ Nxf6 7.c3 Bg4 8.h3 Bh5 9.g4 Bg6 10.Ne5 Be4 11.f3 Bd5 12.Be3 g6 13.c4 Be6 14.Qd2 h5 15.Rg1 hxg4 16.hxg4 Nd7 17.Nxd7 Qxd7 18.0-0-0 Rd8 19.Rg2 Bg7 20.Rh2 Qd6 21.Rxh8+ Bxh8 22.Qc2 a6 23.Be2 b5 24.Kb1 bxc4 25.Bxc4 Bd5 26.Qe2 Qe6 27.Bxd5 Rxd5 28.Qh2 Bf6 29.Bc1 c5 30.Qb8+ Rd8 31.d5 Qe2 32.Qb3 c4 33.Qa4+ Kf8 34.Rd2 Qxf3 35.Qxc4 a5 36.a3 Qh1 37.Qd3 Kg8 38.Rd1 Qg2 39.Qc4 Qf3 40.Rd3 Qf1 41.Ka2 Qe2 42.g5 Be5 43.Kb1

43...e6? Until this point Black had a good game and was actually probing for a win. Did Morozevich overlook the "zwischenschach" after 44...Rxd3 45.Qc8+ Kh7 (45...Kg7 46.e7 wins) 46.exf7 threatening 47.Qg8 mate? 44.dxe6 Kg7 45.e7 Re8 46.Qd5 Rxe7 47.Re3 Qh2 48.Bd2 f6 49.gxf6+

It never rains, it pours... A second tactical error ends the game: 49...Kxf6? He should have taken with the bishop in order to keep on fighting. 50.Qf3+ Kg7 51.Bc3 Qg1+ 52.Ka2 Qg5 53.Rxe5 Rxe5 54.Qd5 Kf6 55.Qd6+ 1-0. A very traumatic game for Morozevich after a comet-like start in this event.

Back on 50%: Alexander Morozevich, who started with 2.0/2

Pictures by Schachfestival Biel

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