Khanty Rd2: Missed Opportunities

by Alejandro Ramirez
5/15/2015 – The second round of the Grand Prix could have been much bloodier. Dominguez was the only one to win today, against Jakovenko, but many missed chances cost important half points. Most importantly Tomashevsky let Grischuk go from a position where the engines even announced forced mate (!). In several other games, one side had an extra pawn but was unable to convert.

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The fourth and final stage of the 2014-2015 Grand Prix Series. This tournament is specially important as it will determine the winner and runner up of this year, both of which will automatically qualify for the 2015 Candidates Tournament - the winner of that will challenge Magnus Carlsen to the World Championship Matcch! The tournament is taking place in Khanty-Mansiysk, Ugra, Russia from May 13 to May 27.

Round Two

Round 02 – May 15 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744
½-½
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Giri, Anish 2776
½-½
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
1-0
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Svidler, Peter 2734
½-½
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
½-½
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
½-½
Jobava, Baadur 2699

Gelfand, Boris ½-½ Nakamura, Hikaru
Nakamura's second black in a row and his second aggressive opening choice. He decided to employ his trusty King's Indian Defense, and he obtained a great position from it. A nice transition into the endgame made it seem as if Black was simply up a pawn, but there were some very real technical difficulties in converting the pawn. Gelfand found some miraculous counterplay and was able to hold the draw in an opposite colored bishop situation.

Nakamura was the one pressing today

But Gelfand held the draw after finding some counterplay

Giri, Anish ½-½ Karjakin, Sergey
Some sot of strange Reti position, in which Black never played d5. Giri overpressed, and despite having the pair of bishops and some open files on the kingside, he was in danger as his structure on the queenside was decimated and his central pawns were under attack. Karjakin definitely had the better chances, and near the ned instead of the safe 30...Qc7?! he could have tried to go for the win with 30...Qxa2! taking a pan and asking Giri if he had any real compensation.

Karjakin took the safe path when he was already much better

Dominguez, Leinier 1-0 Jakovenko, Dmitry

Dominguez played a topsy-turvy game after an interesting opening idea

[Event "KM FIDE GP 2015"] [Site "Khanty-Mansiysk RUS"] [Date "2015.05.15"] [Round "2"] [White "Dominguez Perez, L."] [Black "Jakovenko, D."] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "D43"] [WhiteElo "2734"] [BlackElo "2738"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez,Alejandro"] [PlyCount "71"] [EventDate "2015.05.13"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. Nc3 c6 5. g3 {The lines with 5.g3 are gaining some momentum. We have many examples of top grandmasters using it in the recent past. Personally I think that the best chance for Black are the lines involving a quick dxc4, as Jakovenko played.} dxc4 6. Bg2 Nbd7 7. a4 (7. O-O { is more popular.}) 7... Bb4 8. O-O O-O 9. Qc2 Qe7 10. a5 e5 11. Rd1 a6 12. d5 Nc5 13. Be3 {Dominguez's improvement. Previously the only thing that had been tried was in a very recent game:} (13. Bg5 Bxc3 14. bxc3 Bg4 $11 { Giri-Ivanchuk, 2015.}) 13... Nb3 {The computer says this move is already forced, and the start of some strange complications.} 14. Ra4 c5 15. d6 Qe8 16. Rxb4 {This exchange sacrifice is also forced, but the position becomes crazy!} cxb4 17. Nd5 Nxd5 18. Rxd5 {There is a dual attack on e5 and on c4. The knight on b3 feels uncomfortable on the possibility of getting trapped.} Nd4 $6 { after this move White has too much for the missing material, Black will be nearly paralyzed.} (18... e4 {is the test of fire of this position, at least according to the computers. It is still hard to evaluate, for example.} 19. Nd2 $5 Nxd2 20. Qxd2 c3 $1 21. bxc3 bxc3 22. Qxc3 {and it's not clear if White has enough compensation.}) 19. Bxd4 $2 {However to me it is very strange that Dominguez took with the bishop. Why not keep the bishop pair?} (19. Nxd4 $1) 19... exd4 20. Rxd4 b3 21. Qxc4 Be6 22. Qd3 Qc6 23. Qd2 Rac8 (23... Qc2 $1 { Would have put the entire set up with Bxd4 in question.}) 24. Ne1 Qc1 25. f4 Qb1 (25... Qxd2 26. Rxd2 Rc1 27. Kf2 Ra1 28. Bxb7 Rxa5 $13) 26. Kf2 Rc2 27. Qb4 {Black hasn't made any real progress since taking on b2 is too slow...} Re8 ( 27... Rxb2 28. d7 {Threatening Qxf8 followed by promotion with mate.} Bxd7 29. Rxd7 $18) (27... Qxb2 28. Nxc2 {and now Black can't take with the pawn.} Qxc2 29. d7 Bxd7 30. Rxd7 b2 31. Be4 $18) 28. Be4 Bg4 29. Nxc2 bxc2 30. Qa4 $1 {A strong tactical detail. White attacks everything, but most importantly the rook on e8.} Kf8 31. d7 Bxd7 32. Rxd7 {since the pawn is still pinned White wins.} c1=Q (32... Rxe4 33. Qxe4 c1=Q 34. Rd8#) 33. Qa3+ $1 (33. Bxb1 Qe3+ {is just a draw... careful to the very end!}) 33... Kg8 34. Bxb1 g6 (34... Qxb1 35. Qe7 {gets promptly mated after} Rf8 36. Rd8) 35. Qb3 Qc5+ 36. e3 {White's simply up a piece and a pawn.} 1-0

Svidler, Peter ½-½ Caruana, Fabiano
Svidler definitely had a much comfortable position at some point. His bind on the queenside was very strong and it was uncomfortable to deal with - even though it is true that making progress was far from easy. It does feel that him trading into a drawn endgame was premature, and he could have made Caruana suffer a little more.

Two draws to start out with for Caruana

Tomashevsky, Evgeny ½-½ Grischuk, Alexander
What a series of missed chances...

Evgeny Tomashevsky could have been 2.0/2

[Event "KM FIDE GP 2015"] [Site "Khanty-Mansiysk RUS"] [Date "2015.05.15"] [Round "2"] [White "Tomashevsky, E."] [Black "Grischuk, A."] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "E90"] [WhiteElo "2749"] [BlackElo "2780"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "r4bk1/3bq3/n1Rp2p1/pr1Pp3/1p2PpN1/5P2/PP1QNB2/1K5R w - - 0 32"] [PlyCount "85"] [EventDate "2015.05.13"] 32. Nxf4 $1 {The start of a very strong and deadly attack.} Bxg4 (32... exf4 33. Bd4 Bg7 34. Nh6+ Kf8 35. Qxf4+ Ke8 36. Bxg7 Qxg7 37. Qxd6 $18 {There are too many threats here and not enough resources for Black.}) 33. Nxg6 Qf6 34. Nxf8 Rxf8 35. Rg1 $1 Qxf3 36. Qg5+ $1 Kf7 37. Rxg4 {With equal material and Black's king on f7, his position is hopeless. The engines already announce forced mate.} Ke8 38. Qg6+ Qf7 39. Qxf7+ $6 {Dubious, but good enough.} (39. Qxd6 $1 {and the game is over. The threat is simply Rc8 mate, but a6 is also hanging. Black doesn't even have a check here.}) 39... Rxf7 40. Be3 $4 {But this is a very real error.} (40. Rg8+ Kd7 41. Rxa6 {And the bishop on f2 is untouchable due to the mate threat on a7.}) 40... Nc5 $2 (40... Rf1+ 41. Rc1 ( 41. Kc2 b3+ $1 42. Kc3 $1 (42. axb3 Nb4+ 43. Kc3 Nxc6 $19) 42... bxa2 43. Rxa6 $1 {And there is a miracle perpetual.}) 41... Rxc1+ 42. Kxc1 $11) 41. Rg8+ Kd7 42. Ra8 Rb7 43. Bxc5 dxc5 44. Rxc5 $2 (44. b3 {was a little paradoxical as it weakens the 2nd rank, but it was the way to win. Black's pawns fall like flies. }) 44... Rf1+ 45. Rc1 Rxc1+ 46. Kxc1 b3 $1 {An important resource, and Grischuk eventually held the endgame.} 47. a3 Rc7+ 48. Kd2 Rc2+ 49. Kd3 Rxb2 50. Rxa5 Rh2 51. Rb5 Rh3+ 52. Kd2 Kd6 53. a4 Rh2+ 54. Kc3 Rh3+ 55. Kd2 Rh2+ 56. Kc3 Rh3+ 57. Kc4 Re3 58. Rb6+ Kc7 59. Rxb3 Rxe4+ 60. Kc5 Rxa4 61. d6+ Kd7 62. Rb7+ Ke6 63. Re7+ Kf5 64. d7 Rd4 65. Kc6 e4 66. Re8 Kf4 67. d8=Q Rxd8 68. Rxd8 e3 69. Kd5 e2 70. Re8 Kf3 71. Kd4 Kf2 72. Kd3 e1=Q 73. Rxe1 Kxe1 74. Kd4 1/2-1/2

Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime ½-½ Jobava, Baadur
A very complicated Caro-Kann, but it seems that MVL was outplayed. Jobava even refused a repetition at some point, going for the win - and he was justified in doing so. They eventually reached a complicated rook endgame that was obviously better for Black, but it is unclear if it is winning. The position after 55.Kg2 might be the key one, as Jobava advanced too hastily with h4 and MVL managed a draw.

MVL couldn't use his two Whites to score more than 50%

Standings

Round Two Games

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Photos from the official website by Kirill Merkurev

Schedule

Round 01 – May 14 2015, 15:00h
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
½-½
Gelfand, Boris 2744
Jobava, Baadur 2699
0-1
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
½-½
Svidler, Peter 2734
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
½-½
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
1-0
Giri, Anish 2776
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
½-½
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Round 02 – May 15 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744
½-½
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Giri, Anish 2776
½-½
Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Dominguez, Leinier 2734
1-0
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Svidler, Peter 2734
½-½
Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
½-½
Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
½-½
Jobava, Baadur 2699
Round 03 – May 16 2015, 15:00h
Jobava, Baadur 2699   Gelfand, Boris 2744
Grischuk, Alexander 2780   Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
Caruana, Fabiano 2803   Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738   Svidler, Peter 2734
Karjakin, Sergey 2753   Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799   Giri, Anish 2776
Round 04 – May 17 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744   Giri, Anish 2776
Dominguez, Leinier 2734   Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Svidler, Peter 2734   Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749   Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754   Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Jobava, Baadur 2699   Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Round 05 – May 19 2015, 15:00h
Grischuk, Alexander 2780   Gelfand, Boris 2744
Caruana, Fabiano 2803   Jobava, Baadur 2699
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738   Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
Karjakin, Sergey 2753   Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799   Svidler, Peter 2734
Giri, Anish 2776   Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Round 06 – May 20 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744   Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Svidler, Peter 2734   Giri, Anish 2776
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749   Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754   Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Jobava, Baadur 2699   Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Grischuk, Alexander 2780   Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Round 07 – May 21 2015, 15:00h
Caruana, Fabiano 2803   Gelfand, Boris 2744
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738   Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Karjakin, Sergey 2753   Jobava, Baadur 2699
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799   Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
Giri, Anish 2776   Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Dominguez, Leinier 2734   Svidler, Peter 2734
Round 08 – May 22 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744   Svidler, Peter 2734
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749   Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754   Giri, Anish 2776
Jobava, Baadur 2699   Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Grischuk, Alexander 2780   Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Caruana, Fabiano 2803   Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Round 09 – May 24 2015, 15:00h
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738   Gelfand, Boris 2744
Karjakin, Sergey 2753   Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799   Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Giri, Anish 2776   Jobava, Baadur 2699
Dominguez, Leinier 2734   Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754
Svidler, Peter 2734   Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Round 10 – May 25 2015, 15:00h
Gelfand, Boris 2744   Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754   Svidler, Peter 2734
Jobava, Baadur 2699   Dominguez, Leinier 2734
Grischuk, Alexander 2780   Giri, Anish 2776
Caruana, Fabiano 2803   Nakamura, Hikaru 2799
Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738   Karjakin, Sergey 2753
Round 11 – May 26 2015, 15:00h
Karjakin, Sergey 2753   Gelfand, Boris 2744
Nakamura, Hikaru 2799   Jakovenko, Dmitry 2738
Giri, Anish 2776   Caruana, Fabiano 2803
Dominguez, Leinier 2734   Grischuk, Alexander 2780
Svidler, Peter 2734   Jobava, Baadur 2699
Tomashevsky, Evgeny 2749   Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2754

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 13 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.


Topics Grand Prix, Khanty

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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babycroc babycroc 5/16/2015 12:31
Nicely done, those pics of Caruana and Tomashevsky and the change in focus!
cptmajormajor cptmajormajor 5/15/2015 11:40
It has been a tense start to this important tournament and I predict blood on the chessboard tomorrow- including wins for Naka, Fabi and the Cuban. I will be watching.
Raymond Labelle Raymond Labelle 5/15/2015 10:58
For the 40th move by Tomashevsky - it may be considered that he was under very strong time pressure.
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