Linares R13: Topalov within striking distance

3/9/2005 – Where did he come from? While everybody was watching Garry Kasparov's storm at the top in Linares, another player was steadily creeping up on him. Today Kasparov and Anand played a 22-move draw, but Veselin Topalov beat Vallejo to narrow the gap to a single point. If he beats Kasparov tomorrow he may even win the tournament. Illustrated report

ChessBase 14 Download ChessBase 14 Download

Everyone uses ChessBase, from the World Champion to the amateur next door. Start your personal success story with ChessBase 14 and enjoy your chess even more!


Along with the ChessBase 14 program you can access the Live Database of 8 million games, and receive three months of free ChesssBase Account Premium membership and all of our online apps! Have a look today!

More...

The XXII Torneo Internacional de Ajedrez "Ciudad de Linares", a category 20 double round robin, is being held in the Spanish town of Linares and from February 23 until March 10 2005. During each round one player rests, and in addition there are full rest days on March 1st and 7th. The games start at 15:30h local time (CET = GMT 14:30h = 9:30 a.m. NY) in the Hotel Anibal. Live coverage of the event is expected on the official web site and on Playchess.com. We will be reporting daily on our news page.

Round thirteen

The day started with some excitement. There were fire-engines and policemen just opposite the entrance to the tournament hall, putting out a fiercely burning car.

Maybe it was a routine incendiary accident, but in a country that is plagued by terrorist activities, both indigenous and imported, people can hardly be blamed for being a trifle apprehensive.

The round began punctually with the players trouping in, and all attention given to Kasparov vs Anand on center stage. This time at least a score of spectators turned up to watch the game of the tournament.


Garry Kasparov, the Mover of the White Pieces


Vishy Anand, who defended with a Petroff or "Russian" Opening

Kasparov,G (2804) - Anand,V (2786) [C42]
XXII SuperGM Linares ESP (13), 09.03.2005
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.d4 d5 6.Bd3 Nc6 7.0-0 Be7 8.c4 Nb4 9.Be2 0-0 10.a3 Nc6 11.cxd5 Qxd5 12.Nc3 Nxc3 13.bxc3 Bf5 14.Re1 Rfe8 15.Bf4 Rac8 16.Bd3 Qd7N 17.Rb1 Bxd3 18.Qxd3 b6 19.d5 Bf6 20.c4 h6 21.h3.

Correct us if we are wrong, but didn't this position occur two years and a day ago, in the same hall in Linares. At the time it was Leko playing against Anand, and White won after 21...Re7 22.Rbd1 Rd8 23.Rxe7 Nxe7 24.Ne5 Bxe5 25.Bxe5 Re8 26.Bg3 Nf5 27.Bxc7 Qxc7 28.Qxf5 Qxc4 29.d6 Rd8 30.d7 Qc6 31.g3 a6 32.h4 b5 33.Rd5 a5 34.Rxb5 g6 35.Qd5 Qxd7 36.Qxd7 Rxd7 37.Rxa5 in 65 moves. Last October at the Calvià Olympiad we saw Gelfand play 21...h3 Rxe1+ 22.Rxe1 Ne7 23.Ne5 Bxe5 24.Bxe5 Nf5 and draw against Akopian. Anand played the novelty 21...Ne7 and after 22.Ne5 the players agreed to an early draw.


Afterwards a brief discussion of their game...


Then a quick handshake and off they were. "I think I'll have a lie down", said Anand as he left. Good for you if you know where he got that line.


FIDE world champion Rustam Kasimdzhanov

Rustam Kasimdzhanov is understandably sick of Linares and clearly wanted nothing but a draw in his last game here. He was circumspect and accurate in his B31 Sicilian against Peter Leko. The latter pottered around, hoping to detect some trace of inaccuracy. But it never came and the game was drawn in 24.


Peter Leko, searching for inaccuracies in Kasim's position


Topalov and team approach the tournament hall

That left us with what was basically a very boring round. If it weren't for Veselin Topalov, that is. Playing with black against tailender Vallejo he put on a "you-must-be-joking" face when the Spaniard offered him a draw on move 16. Black had a pair of bishops and no intention of conceding the tournament irrevocably to the leading Kasparov.


Ready to fight with the black pieces: Veselin Topalov

Vallejo Pons,F (2686) - Topalov,V (2757) [D37]
XXII SuperGM Linares ESP (13), 09.03.2005
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 d5 4.d4 Be7 5.Bg5 h6 6.Bxf6 Bxf6 7.Qc2 dxc4 8.e3 c5 9.dxc5 Qa5 10.Bxc4 Qxc5 11.Ne4 Qa5+ 12.Ke2 Be7 13.Qc3 Qxc3 14.Nxc3 a6 15.Rhd1 Nd7 16.Ne4 b5 17.Bb3 Bb7 18.Nd6+ Bxd6 19.Rxd6 Ke7 20.Rad1 Rhd8 21.R6d4 Rac8 22.Ne1 a5 23.f3 Rc7 24.e4 Rdc8 25.a3 g5 26.Ke3 Ne5 27.R4d2 Ba6 28.Rd6 Ra7 29.R6d2 b4.

Afterwards Topalov told the journalists that here it was essentially curtains for Vallejo. 30.axb4 Rb8 31.Ra1. We preferred 31.Nc2 a4 32.Bxa4 Nc4+ 33.Kf2 Nxd2 34.Rxd2 after which White has a knight and two pawns for the rook and a better chance of hanging on. After the text move it is genuinely hopeless, and Vallejo had to resign after seven more moves: 31...Rxb4 32.Ra3 a4 33.Ba2 Bc4 34.Bb1 Bf1 35.Ba2 Rab7 36.Nc2 Rxb2 37.Rxa4 Rc7 38.Kf2 Bb5 0-1.


Trailing with Fortuna definitely not on his side: Francisco Vallejo

During communal dinner in the Anibal restaurant there was much debate about what Topalov's win and score meant for the outcome of the tournament. Suppose he were to win with white against Kasparov on the morrow. Who would then be the overall winner of the XXII Torneo Internacional de Ajedrez "Ciudad de Linares", he or Kasparov? Both would have the same number of points, so the tiebreak would decide. And that would favour whom?


A few spectators watching the games in the hotel lobby


Aruna Anand at the computer in the press room

The amazing answer is that nobody knew. We asked tournament officials and did not get a definitive answer. We asked colleagues who mainly said they had been meaning to ask us. And we asked Topalov himself, and he confessed that he did not know. The only thing that appears to be certain is that the traditional SB system will not be used, rather the number of won games is the first tiebreaker. "But we would both have won the same number of games," said Veselin, "and then I don't know what decides." Some people were sure that it was the number of black wins, in which case Kasparov would already be the winner. But as we said, nobody was sure. So apart from the very exciting game we expect to see on Thursday there is the additional nervous pleasure of not knowing exactly what the outcome will imply. Well, let's hope it has been figured out by the time of the prize-giving ceremony – which by the way is also unclear. It was announced for Friday, but that is a national day of mourning in Spain, so many expect it to be held tomorrow evening after the final round. But as with so many other things only time will probably tell...

Round 13 (Wednesday, March 9, 2005)
Garry Kasparov
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Francisco Vallejo
0-1
Veselin Topalov
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
½-½
Peter Leko
Round 14 (Thursday, March 10, 2005)
Peter Leko
Francisco Vallejo
Veselin Topalov
Garry Kasparov
Viswanathan Anand
Michael Adams
Games – Report
Current standing
Scores
Kasparov
+5
Topalov
+3
Anand
+2
Leko
0
Adams
–2
Vallejo
–4
Kasimdzhanov
–4

Report and pictures by Frederic Friedel


Schedule and results

Round 1 (Wednesday, February 23, 2005)
Veselin Topalov
1-0
Michael Adams
Peter Leko
½-½
Garry Kasparov
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
½-½
Francisco Vallejo
Round 2 (Thursday, February 24, 2005)
Garry Kasparov
½-½
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Michael Adams
½-½
Peter Leko
Viswanathan Anand
1-0
Veselin Topalov
Round 3 (Friday, February 25, 2005)
Peter Leko
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
½-½
Michael Adams
Francisco Vallejo
0-1
Garry Kasparov
Round 4 (Saturday, February 26, 2005)
Michael Adams
1-0
Francisco Vallejo
Viswanathan Anand
½-½
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Veselin Topalov
½-½
Peter Leko
Round 5 (Sunday, February 27, 2005)
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
½-½
Veselin Topalov
Francisco Vallejo
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Garry Kasparov
1-0
Michael Adams
Round 6 (Monday, February 28, 2005)
Viswanathan Anand
½-½
Garry Kasparov
Veselin Topalov
1-0
Francisco Vallejo
Peter Leko
½-½
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Round 7 (Wednesday, March 2, 2005)
Francisco Vallejo
½-½
Peter Leko
Garry Kasparov
½-½
Veselin Topalov
Michael Adams
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Round 8 (Thursday, March 3, 2005)
Michael Adams
½-½
Veselin Topalov
Garry Kasparov
½-½
Peter Leko
Francisco Vallejo
1-0
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Round 9 (Friday, March 4, 2005)
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
0-1
Garry Kasparov
Peter Leko
½-½
Michael Adams
Veselin Topalov
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Round 10 (Saturday, March 5, 2005)
Viswanathan Anand
½-½
Peter Leko
Michael Adams
½-½
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Garry Kasparov
1-0
Francisco Vallejo
Round 11 (Sunday, March 6, 2005)
Francisco Vallejo
½-½
Michael Adams
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
0-1
Viswanathan Anand
Peter Leko
½-½
Veselin Topalov
Round 12 (Tuesday, March 8, 2005)
Veselin Topalov
1-0
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Viswanathan Anand
½-½
Francisco Vallejo
Michael Adams
0-1
Garry Kasparov
Round 13 (Wednesday, March 9, 2005)
Garry Kasparov
½-½
Viswanathan Anand
Francisco Vallejo
0-1
Veselin Topalov
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
½-½
Peter Leko
Round 14 (Thursday, March 10, 2005)
Peter Leko
Francisco Vallejo
Veselin Topalov
Garry Kasparov
Viswanathan Anand
Michael Adams
Games – Report

Links


Topics Linares 2005
Discussion and Feedback Join the public discussion or submit your feedback to the editors


Discuss

Rules for reader comments

 
 

Not registered yet? Register