Dortmund R7: Vladimir Kramnik wins Super-GM

8/7/2006 – Who would have thought so a few days ago. With two dramatic victories in the last two rounds classical chess world champion Vladimir Kramnik snatched victory from the colleagues who had been looming ahead of him during the earlier part of the Dortmund Sparkassen Chess Meeting. Equal first was Peter Svidler. Full updated report.

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SPARKASSEN
CHESS MEETING
2006
July 28 to August 6, 2006

The Dortmunder Sparkassen Chess Meeting is taking place in the State Theatre (Schauspielhaus) in Dortmund, Germany, from July 29th to August 6, 2006. It is a single round robin tournament with eight players, averaging 2720 Elo and making for a category 19 event.

Round seven report

Round 7: Sunday, August 6, 13:00h
Boris Gelfand
1-0
Levon Aronian
Vladimir Kramnik
1-0 
Peter Leko
Arkadij Naiditsch
1-0
Baadur Jobava
Peter Svidler
½-½
Michael Adams

Vladimir Kramnik vs Peter Leko was the game to watch. Naturally everyone remembered their world championship match in Brissago in 2004, in which the challenger Leko came within a hair's breadth of taking Kramnik's title (the latter won the last game to draw the match and retain his title). This was Peter's chance to win the last-round game in Dortmund, or at least to rock-solidly draw it to stay ahead of his Russian rival. The two followed a game played by Kramnik's second Evgeny Bareev against Leko's compatriot Zoltan Almasi at the Amber blindfold tournament in Monacco 2003. At move 22 Peter Leko deviated and soon found himself two pawns down. One was a dangerous passer that advanced to b7 and had to be traded for a bishop. In the endgame with an an extra piece Kramnik had little trouble and ended up taking game, set and match.


The key game: Kramnik vs Leko in the final round

Peter Svidler vs Michael Adams ended long before all of this happened. In a Closed Ruy Lopez the draw agreement came on move 17, ensuring Svidler equal first and Adams equal third.


A solid third place: Michael Adams, England

Arkadij Naiditsch vs Baadur Jobava, a classical Caro-Kann, went sour on the Georgian on move 27:

Naiditsch,A (2664) - Jobava,Ba (2651) [B19]
Sparkassen Dortmund GER (7), 06.08.2006
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Bf5 5.Ng3 Bg6 6.h4 h6 7.Nf3 Nd7 8.h5 Bh7 9.Bd3 Bxd3 10.Qxd3 e6 11.Bd2 Ngf6 12.0-0-0 Be7 13.Qe2 0-0 14.Rhe1 Qb6 15.Ne5 Rfe8 16.Nc4 Qa6 17.Na5 b5 18.Kb1 c5 19.dxc5 Nxc5 20.Nb3 Nxb3 21.axb3 Qb6 22.Bc3 a5 23.Ne4 Nxe4 24.Qxe4 a4 25.Rd7 Qa6 26.Qg4 Bg5

Black has defended against the mate threat on g7 by playing his bishop to g5. He is fearless of 27.f4 because he has 27...axb3 with deadly mate threats of his own. However, after White plays 27.bxa4 the black threat has disappeared and Jobava must worry about the bishop. 27...Qc6 28.f4 b4! was an option, but not what came in the game: 27...bxa4? Now White can play 28.f4 and after 28...Qb5 29.Rd3 a3 simply pick up the bishop: 30.fxg5. Unlike in his previous game Jobava played on for ten more moves before conceding that he could not survive the game a piece down. 30...axb2 31.Bxb2 Ra4 32.Qe2 Qxg5 33.Qe5 Ra5 34.Qxg5 Rxg5 35.Red1 Rxg2 36.Rd8 Rxd8 37.Rxd8+ Kh7 38.c4 Rg5 39.Bd4 e5 40.Bf2 1-0.

Boris Gelfand vs Levon Aronian was a sharp, exciting battle, a beautiful game to analyse with a chess engine.

Gelfand,B (2729) - Aronian,L (2761) [E15]
Sparkassen Dortmund GER (7), 06.08.2006
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Ba6 5.Qc2 Bb7 6.Bg2 c5 7.d5 exd5 8.cxd5 Bxd5 9.Nc3 Bc6 10.e4 Be7 11.Bf4 0-0 12.0-0-0 Na6 13.Qe2 Nb4 14.a3

14...Qc8. Aronian wants to turn this into a sharp tactical fight, where he believes he has an edge on the older, more positionally oriented Boris Gelfand. 15.Kb1. 15.axb4 cxb4 leaves the black queen x-raying the white king with very dangerous consequences. 15...a5 16.Ne5 Re8 17.Rhe1 Bf8 18.g4 g6 19.Bg3 Re6 20.f4 d6 21.Nxc6 Nxc6. The knight has been dangling on b4 for six moves. Gelfand has taken up the tactical challenge and is doing very well in this sharp position. 22.Nb5 Ne8.

Now watch Gelfand finish off his young colleague from Armenia: 23.e5 dxe5 24.Bd5 a4 25.fxe5 Ng7 26.Qf3 Rb8 27.Nd6 Bxd6 28.exd6 Nd4 29.Rxd4 Rxe1+ 30.Bxe1 cxd4 31.Qxf7+ Kh8 32.d7 Qc5 33.Bb4 1-0.


Five of the participants: Kramnik, Adams, Aronian, Leko and Naiditsch

Final standings

Kramnik's performance in this event was 2818, exactly the same as Peter Svidler, Adams, Leko, Gelfand and even Arkadij Naiditsch scored above their expectation and can expect to win rating points in the next FIDE list. They take the points from the two big losers of the event, Levon Aronian and Baadur Jobava, who performed at levels of 2555 and 2505 repectively. Quite traumatic for these bright young talents.

The women's match between the best female players in the US and Germany, Irina Krush and Elisabeth Pähtz, ended in a narrow victory for the US lady, who won her fifth round game. All others were drawn.

Photos: Dagobert Kohlmeyer


Full Schedule and Results

Round 1: Saturday, July 29, 15:00h
Michael Adams
½-½
Levon Aronian
Baadur Jobava
0-1
Peter Svidler
Peter Leko
1-0
Arkadij Naiditsch
Boris Gelfand
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik
Round 2: Sunday, July 30, 15:00h
Levon Aronian
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik
Arkadij Naiditsch
½-½
Boris Gelfand
Peter Svidler
½-½
Peter Leko
Michael Adams
½-½ 
Baadur Jobava
Round 3: Tuesday, August 1, 15:00h
Baadur Jobava
½-½
Levon Aronian
Peter Leko
½-½
Michael Adams
Boris Gelfand
½-½
Peter Svidler
Vladimir Kramnik
½-½
Arkadij Naiditsch
Round 4: Wednesday, August 2, 15:00h
Levon Aronian
½-½
Arkadij Naiditsch
Peter Svidler
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik
Michael Adams
1-0
Boris Gelfand
Baadur Jobava
½-½
Peter Leko
Round 5: Friday, August 4, 15:00h
Peter Leko
1-0
Levon Aronian
Boris Gelfand
1-0
Baadur Jobava
Vladimir Kramnik
½-½
Michael Adams
Arkadij Naiditsch
½-½
Peter Svidler
Round 6: Saturday, August 5, 15:00h
Levon Aronian
0-1
Peter Svidler
Michael Adams
½-½
Arkadij Naiditsch
Baadur Jobava
0-1
Vladimir Kramnik
Peter Leko
½-½
Boris Gelfand
Round 7: Sunday, August 6, 13:00h
Boris Gelfand
1-0
Levon Aronian
Vladimir Kramnik
1-0 
Peter Leko
Arkadij Naiditsch
1-0
Baadur Jobava
Peter Svidler
½-½
Michael Adams

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Topics: Dortmund 2006
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