Biel Final: MVL wins again!

by Alejandro Ramirez
7/30/2015 – MVL and Wojtaszek went into the last round with the lead. MVL took care of Rapport without any problems: after only 20 moves the Frenchman was up a pawn and had a better position. Wojtaszek was thrashing Navara's position, his passed pawn crushing his opponent. Navara was lost, but in time pressure... he survived! MVL wins the tournament! In the last game, Eljanov suicided against Adams.

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The traditional Biel/Bienne Chess Festival is going strong in Switzerland. The festival includes a series of events, but the crown jewel is the Grandmaster Tournament, with an average rating of 2720.

Draw offers are forbidden for the first 40 moves and If two (or more) players share first place, the winner will be determined according to the results of a tiebreak played on July 31st (in the morning). 

Round Ten

Round 10 - July 30, 2015
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2731
1-0
Rapport, Richard 2671
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
½-½
Navara, David 2724
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
0-1
Adams, Michael 2740

Round Ten Video Report and Play of the Day

Adams (3rd), MVL (1st) and Wojtaszek (2nd)

Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 1-0 Rapport, Richard
MVL chose what is considered to be a very good variation against the exd4 Philidor. Rapport didn't seem to create much this game, he lost a pawn early and then got outplayed:

Hat-trick for MVL! This is his third edition of Biel that he wins in a row.

[Event "48th Biel GM 2015"] [Site "Biel SUI"] [Date "2015.07.30"] [Round "10"] [White "Vachier Lagrave, M."] [Black "Rapport, R."] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C41"] [WhiteElo "2731"] [BlackElo "2671"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez,Alejandro"] [PlyCount "95"] [EventDate "2015.07.20"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 exd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 Be7 {The variations with exd4 have fallen out of grace in the eyes of theoreticians. White has a couple of ways of getting an advantage.} 6. g3 {This has been known for some time to give White at least a slight edge.} O-O (6... d5 {is complex, but probably just bad if White knows the correct continuation.}) 7. Bg2 Re8 8. O-O Bf8 9. Bf4 Nbd7 10. Qd2 Ne5 11. Rad1 c6 12. h3 b5 13. b3 {Black's position is not that bad, but White is to be preferred. He has better development and is controlling all of Black's pieces. Now MVL puts in the squeeze.} b4 14. Na4 c5 {Seeking complications, but its unclear that it gives Black anything.} 15. Nb5 d5 {A very Rapport-like solution.} (15... Ba6 16. c4 Bxb5 17. cxb5 {doesn't look good for Black. b5 is weak, but the nice light square control more than makes up for it.}) (15... Bxh3 16. Bxe5 Rxe5 17. Bxh3 a6 18. Nxd6 $18) 16. exd5 Bxh3 (16... Bd7 17. Rfe1 Ng6 18. Bc7 Rxe1+ 19. Rxe1 Qc8 20. d6 Bxb5 21. Nxc5 $16) 17. Bxe5 Rxe5 (17... Bxg2 18. Bxf6 Qxf6 19. Kxg2 $18) 18. Bxh3 a6 {Black regains his piece, but his position is trash.} 19. Nbc3 bxc3 20. Nxc3 {Black is down a pawn and White's passed pawn on d5 is a strong asset. Black's best hope is to blockade on the dark squares and hope White doesn't make any progress.} Bd6 21. Rfe1 Rxe1+ 22. Rxe1 Qc7 23. Ne4 Nxe4 24. Rxe4 Qb6 25. Qe3 g6 26. Bd7 Rd8 27. Be8 {White is in control of the position. Black has to be careful not to weaken his king too much.} Qc7 28. Kg2 Rb8 29. Rh4 h5 30. Re4 Rb4 31. c4 {MVL has no interest in exchange rooks, of course.} Rb8 $2 (31... Rb7 {offers more resistance.} 32. Qf3 $2 (32. Bc6 Rb8 33. Qf3 Be5 {at least improves the bishop.}) 32... Qd8 {with some chances to hold, Black wants to play Re7 next move and exchange pieces.}) 32. Qf3 Bf8 33. Qf6 a5 (33... Bg7 34. Qxa6 {is another pawn.}) 34. d6 $1 Qb7 (34... Bxd6 35. Bxf7+ Qxf7 36. Qxd6 { costs Black a pawn and trades the opposite colored bishops.}) 35. f3 Bg7 36. Qe7 (36. Qf4 {with the threat of Re7 was also completely winning.}) 36... Qxe7 37. Rxe7 Bf8 38. Bxf7+ Kg7 39. Ra7 Bxd6 40. Bd5+ Kf6 41. Rxa5 {two pawns are, after all, two pawns.} Rb6 42. f4 g5 43. Kf3 h4 44. fxg5+ Kxg5 45. gxh4+ Kxh4 46. Ke4 Kg5 47. Rb5 Rb8 48. Rxb8 {White rushes his king to b6 and advances the a-pawn.} 1-0

The end of a tournament that Rapport would like to forget

Wojtaszek, Radoslaw ½-½ Navara, David
Wojtaszek had everything in his power to tie for first, but he let it go in time pressure in an incredible way!

Navara managed to survive... somehow!

[Event "48th Biel GM 2015"] [Site "Biel SUI"] [Date "2015.07.30"] [Round "10"] [White "Wojtaszek, R."] [Black "Navara, D."] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "D98"] [WhiteElo "2733"] [BlackElo "2724"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez, Alejandro"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "q1r3k1/p4pb1/p2P2pp/2N5/2r5/4B1QP/Pn1R1PP1/2R3K1 w - - 0 28"] [PlyCount "29"] [EventDate "2015.07.20"] 28. Rb1 R8xc5 29. Bxc5 Qe4 30. Rf1 $6 (30. d7 Qxb1+ 31. Kh2 {Seems simple enough:} Bf6 32. d8=Q+ Bxd8 33. Rxd8+ Kh7 34. Qe5 {and Black simply gets mated. }) (30. Rbxb2 Rc1+ 31. Kh2 Be5 32. d7 Bxg3+ 33. fxg3 Qe1 34. d8=Q+ Kh7 35. g4 { And Black doesn't have any real threats:} Qh1+ 36. Kg3 Qe1+ 37. Kf3 Rc3+ 38. Rd3 Qf1+ 39. Ke4 Rxc5 40. Qd4 $18) 30... Rxc5 31. d7 Bf6 32. Rxb2 $6 (32. d8=Q+ Bxd8 33. Rxd8+ Kh7 34. Qd6 {is stronger, as the attack is lethal, at least once one realizes Black has nothing after:} Rg5 35. g4 h5 36. Qf6 Rxg4+ 37. hxg4 Qxg4+ 38. Kh2 $18) (32. Qd6 $18 Qe7 33. Qxe7 Bxe7 34. Re1 $18) 32... Rg5 33. Qb8+ Kg7 34. g3 $2 (34. Qb7 $1 $18 {But this would be a little unusual to play with seconds on your clock.}) 34... Qd4 $1 35. Rb4 Qxd7 {With the passed pawn eliminated, Navara has reasonable chances to hold this game.} 36. h4 Rf5 37. Rbb1 Qd2 38. Rbd1 Qxa2 {With this pawn gone, White's winning chanecs basically evaporate.} 39. Qxa7 Qc4 40. Qe3 a5 41. Qd3 Qxd3 42. Rxd3 1/2-1/2

When the clock was ticking, Wojtaszek was unable to finish off his opponent

Eljanov, Pavel 0-1 Adams, Michael
The last game to finish. The winner of this game would catch Navara for third, so it was still important. Eljanov was pushing hard for the win, and perhaps was even close to it, when disaster struck:

Eljanov was pushing...

But it was Adams that took the victory

[Event "48th Biel GM 2015"] [Site "Biel SUI"] [Date "2015.07.30"] [Round "10"] [White "Eljanov, P."] [Black "Adams, Mi"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "E06"] [WhiteElo "2723"] [BlackElo "2740"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez,Alejandro"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "1q1rk3/3nbp2/2pr2p1/pp4P1/P2pP3/1P1B2Q1/4NPK1/2R4R w - - 0 47"] [PlyCount "26"] [EventDate "2015.07.20"] 47. Rh8+ Bf8 48. axb5 cxb5 49. e5 Rd5 50. Qf4 $2 (50. Re1 $1 $16 {Black's very weak king will be difficult to hold. A timely e6 break will cost Black dearly.} Nxe5 51. Nf4 $5 (51. Nxd4 $1 {is decisive.})) 50... Qxe5 {A free pawn is a free pawn, after all.} 51. Re1 $4 {Perhaps a big oversight.} Qxh8 {Nicely calculated. White has no real threats.} 52. Nxd4+ Re5 53. Rh1 Qg7 54. Bxb5 Be7 $19 {Black's position is uncomfortable, but a rook is a rook after all...} 55. Ba4 Rxg5+ 56. Kf1 Qe5 {The rest is very easy. White cannot even avoid the queen trade.} 57. Qxe5 Rxe5 58. Rh8+ Bf8 59. Nc6 Rh5 {Black is up way too much material.} 0-1

99 Seconds with Michael Adams:

Final Standings

Round Ten Games

Select from the dropdown menu to replay the games

Photos by: Marie Boyard, Simon Bohnenblust, Christian Ostermeier and Pascal Simon

Commentary on Playchess

Danny King live in Biel

We will be bringing you interviews, photos, reports and videos from Biel, and of course we will have live commentary on our website, www.playchess.com

Round 01 - July 20, 2015
Adams, Michael 2740
1-0
Navara, David 2724
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
½-½
Rapport, Richard 2671
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2731
½-½
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
Round 02 - July 21, 2015
Rapport, Richard 2671
½-½
Adams, Michael 2740
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
0-1
Navara, David 2724
Vachier-Lagrave, Max 2731
½-½
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
Round 03 - July 22, 2015
Navara, David 2724
1-0
Rapport, Richard 2671
Adams, Michael 2740
0-1
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2731
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
1-0
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
Round 04 - July 23, 2015
Navara, David 2724
1-0
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
Rapport, Richard 2671
½-½
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2731
Adams, Michael 2740
0-1
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
Round 05 - July 24, 2015
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
½-½
Adams, Michael 2740
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2731
½-½
Navara, David 2724
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
½-½
Rapport, Richard 2671
Round 06 - July 25, 2015
Navara, David 2724
0-1
Adams, Michael 2740
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
½-½
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2731
Rapport, Richard 2671
0-1
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
Round 07 - July 27, 2015
Adams, Michael 2740
1-0
Rapport, Richard 2671
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
½-½
Vachier-Lagrave, M 2731
Navara, David 2724
0-1
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
Round 08 - July 28, 2015
Rapport, Richard 2671
0-1
Navara, David 2724
Vachier-Lagrave,M 2731
1-0
Adams, Michael 2740
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
½-½
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
Round 09 - July 29, 2015
Navara, David 2724
0-1
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2731
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
0-1
Rapport, Richard 2671
Adams, Michael 2740
½-½
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
Round 10 - July 30, 2015
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2731
1-0
Rapport, Richard 2671
Wojtaszek, Radoslaw 2733
½-½
Navara, David 2724
Eljanov, Pavel 2723
0-1
Adams, Michael 2740

Links

The games will be broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server Playchess.com. If you are not a member you can download a free Playchess client there and get immediate access. You can also use ChessBase 12 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.


Topics Biel

Grandmaster Alejandro Ramirez has been playing tournament chess since 1998. His accomplishments include qualifying for the 2004 and 2013 World Cups as well as playing for Costa Rica in the 2002, 2004 and 2008 Olympiads. He currently has a rating of 2583 and is author of a number of popular and critically acclaimed ChessBase-DVDs.
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scoobeedo scoobeedo 8/3/2015 06:36
Interesting, much more wins for black as for white. The young guns are a little to optimistic when they have white.

Hey Rapport, calm down, the others can play chess too. It is not so easy to run over them, hehe
Emil Cabagay Emil Cabagay 7/31/2015 03:14
Congratulation to MVL for winning Biel 3x in a row. Not an easy feat for any SGM! Wojtaszek & Navara- you can still do it next time! Thanks for the organizers & commentators who bring us this wonderful event.
yesenadam yesenadam 7/31/2015 01:46
Well, that was a fun tournament! Thanks everyone. Better luck next time RR.

So evidently MVL > Adams > Navara > Wojtaszek > MVL ...
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