Norway 03: Fantastic Round!

by Alejandro Ramirez
6/5/2014 – A very hard round to predict. Carlsen barely held on against Caruana who had him against the ropes the majority of the game. Aronian blundered his queen in less than 15 moves and Grischuk mopped up the game. Karjakin miraculously drew against Agdestein who certainly had a winning position. Kramnik meanwhile cannot win Catalans with the white pieces, but he crushes with black!

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The Unibet Norway Chess Tournament will take place in Stavanger, Norway from June 2nd to June 13th. The tournament features some of the best players in the world and has a massive rating average of 2774.

Round Three

Round 03 – June 05 2014, 15:30h
Sergey Karjakin 2771
½-½
Simen Agdestein 2628
Alexander Grischuk 2792
1-0
Levon Aronian 2815
Peter Svidler 2753
½-½
Veselin Topalov 2772
Magnus Carlsen 2881
½-½
Fabiano Caruana 2791
Anish Giri 2752
0-1
Vladimir Kramnik 2783

Daniel King shows a summary of round 3

The playing hall is rather dark, but the boards are well lit

Karjakin, Sergey ½-½ Agdestein, Simen
An extremely wild game. Agdestein quickly went pawn hunting in this topical variation of the French, but Karjakin came up with an interesting novelty and quickly put pressure on his opponent. An exchange sacrifice stranded Agdestein's king in the center and Karjakin had a serious initiative. However the Norwegian's resilient defense did not allow any clear break-through.

26...Bb6! was a perfectly timed piece sacrifice. Karjakin had already sacrificed a piece himself, so this left Agdestein up an exchange after the dust settled, though the Russian had a powerful passed pawn on e7 that was protected by his bishop to show for it. Slowly but surely Agdestein started to unravel and Karjakin was unable to make progress with his pawn, and he was also unable to hold on to his own position as his king lacked safety.

Black was certainly winning, but his technique failed him. At some point he allowed a dubious exchange of queens and Karjakin had just enough counterplay to bring home half a point.

Saving himself by a hair: Sergey Karjakin

50% is a good score for Agdestein, but he missed
good chances against Aronian and now against Karjakin

Giri, Anish 0-1 Kramnik, Vladimir
Vladimir had immense pressure thanks to a pawn sacrifice, but it was unclear if he could make much progress until White made the following mistake:

[Event "Norway Chess 2014"] [Site "Stavanger"] [Date "2014.06.05"] [Round "3.3"] [White "Giri, Anish"] [Black "Kramnik, Vladimir"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "E05"] [WhiteElo "2752"] [BlackElo "2783"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez,Alejandro"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "8/1p1r2pk/6q1/4pb1p/PP2p3/2R1PnPP/5PB1/2B2Q1K w - - 0 41"] [PlyCount "6"] [EventDate "2014.??.??"] [EventCountry "NOR"] 41. Rc2 $2 Qe6 $1 {A surprisingly powerful move. The threat is not only Qb3, which is strong in on itself, but rather a far more devious idea.} 42. Qe2 (42. Rc4 Bxh3 $1 43. Bxh3 Qxh3+ $1 44. Qxh3 Rd1+ 45. Qf1 Rxf1+ 46. Kg2 Rg1+ 47. Kh3 g5 {And white will get promptly mated.}) 42... g6 $6 {Kramnik misses a chance to really push his advantage.} (42... Bxh3 $1 43. Bxf3 exf3 44. Qxf3 Bg4 45. Qe4+ Bf5 46. Qc4 Rd1+ 47. Kg2 Bh3+ 48. Kh2 Qf5 {and the threat of Qf3 and the threat of Bf1 makes White's position hopeless. However this is not easy to see over the board.}) 43. Rc4 $2 {And now Bxh3 is even stronger.} Bxh3 {White's position simply collapses everywhere, for example:} (43... Bxh3 44. Rxe4 Bxg2+ 45. Kxg2 Ng5 46. Rc4 Qh3+ 47. Kg1 e4) 0-1

"I draw too many Catalans with white, so I have to win them with Black..." - Vladimir Kramnik

Carlsen, Magnus ½-½ Caruana, Fabiano

[Event "Norway Chess 2014"] [Site "Stavanger"] [Date "2014.06.05"] [Round "3.4"] [White "Carlsen, Magnus"] [Black "Caruana, Fabiano"] [Result "*"] [ECO "D70"] [WhiteElo "2881"] [BlackElo "2791"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez,Alejandro"] [PlyCount "133"] [EventDate "2014.??.??"] [EventCountry "NOR"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. f3 {Caruana's Grunfeld has proven to be solid time after time, so the amount of anti-Grunfelds thrown against him is staggering. This is a popular try nowadays, a very sharp one.} d5 (3... d6 {going for a Saemisch King's Indian is also entirely possible.}) 4. cxd5 Nxd5 5. e4 Nb6 6. Nc3 Bg7 7. Be3 O-O 8. Qd2 Nc6 9. O-O-O Qd6 10. Nb5 (10. h4 Rd8 11. Nb5 Qd7 12. h5 a6 13. Nc3 Nxd4 14. hxg6 hxg6 $4 (14... fxg6 {keeps things interesting.}) 15. Bxd4 {Was already losing for Black in Nakamura-Caruana from last year, a lesson that the Italian learned the hard way.}) 10... Qd7 11. Kb1 Rd8 12. d5 a6 13. Nc3 Qe8 14. Qc1 (14. Qe1 {is the more common retreat, and it has been tried against Caruana twice.} Na7 $1 $13 {Gelfand-Caruana, 2013} (14... Ne5 $6 15. Be2 e6 16. Bxb6 cxb6 17. f4 Nd7 18. dxe6 Qxe6 19. Nf3 $5 $13 { Aronian-Caruana, 2012})) 14... Na5 {The other knight moves are also possible, time will tell which one is preferable.} 15. Bh6 Bxh6 16. Qxh6 e6 17. Nh3 (17. h4 {is caveman chess, but Black might be able to equalize} exd5 18. h5 Qf8 $1 19. Qxf8+ Rxf8 20. Nxd5 Nxd5 21. exd5 b5 {and the subsequent Nb7-d6 maneuver should guarantee Black decent chances.}) 17... Qe7 18. Bd3 e5 $6 {Closing the center gives Black chances to blockade and then counterattack White's pawns, while killing the activity of the bishop on d3. However it does give White some time to open up the kingside.} 19. Nf2 Nbc4 20. h4 Rd6 21. Bxc4 $1 {The bishop on d3 was not valuable at all, it is important to trade it off for one of the knights.} Nxc4 22. Qc1 (22. h5 $4 g5 {is Black's defense.}) 22... b5 23. Nd3 {White is making sure that Black cannot break through while at the same time preparing h5.} Bd7 24. b3 Nb6 25. h5 g5 26. g3 $2 {Carlsen had played a great game up this point, but this move is hard to understand. Clearly Black wants to play c6 and White should at least make it hard for his opponent to do so.} (26. Qe3 $1 Rb8 27. Rc1 $1 c6 28. Nb4 $16) 26... c6 {Black breaks through and it is hard to say White has any advantage at all.} 27. f4 (27. Nb4 c5 28. Nc2 c4 $132) 27... cxd5 28. Nxe5 d4 29. Qa3 a5 $1 {A great tactical stroke. Caruana accurately calculated the complications stemming from this move.} 30. Nxb5 (30. Nd5 Nxd5 31. exd5 a4 $15) 30... Bxb5 31. Rxd4 Re6 {Black moves out of the pin and protects his queen. Now he will emerge up material, but White's activity gives him good chances to draw; he needs only one more pawn to restore material balance, more or less.} 32. Qxe7 Rxe7 33. Rc1 Nd7 34. Rc7 Nxe5 $6 {This complicates Black's position.} (34... gxf4 $1 {An important subtlety, although surely hard to calculate with so little time left.} 35. gxf4 (35. Nxd7 f3 $1 36. Nf6+ (36. Rd2 f2 $19) 36... Kg7 37. Rxe7 f2 38. Rd1 Kxf6 $19) 35... Nxe5 36. Rxe7 Nc6 37. Rd5 {and now there is no pawn hanging with check on g5.}) 35. Rxe7 Nc6 36. Rd5 Bd3+ (36... Nxe7 37. Rxg5+ Kf8 38. Rxb5 $11) 37. Rxd3 Nxe7 38. fxg5 Rb8 {The endgame should be close to a draw. White has a lot of pawns, but they are rather weak and unable to create a passer. Black on the other hand has some problems with his king and his own weak pawns.} 39. Rd7 Kf8 40. Ra7 Rb5 41. Ra8+ Kg7 42. Re8 $6 (42. Ra6 {threatening h6 was a better move.}) 42... Re5 43. g4 Rxe4 44. Kc2 Re5 45. Kd3 f6 46. gxf6+ Kxf6 {Black is unable to win this endgame. His pawns are too weak and White is too active, but more importantly the amount of pawns left for his is too small. Carlsen defends accurately.} 47. Rh8 Kg7 48. Re8 Kh6 49. a3 Kg5 50. Rh8 h6 51. Rh7 Re6 52. Rg7+ Kf6 53. Rh7 Ke5 54. Rg7 Kf4 55. b4 axb4 56. axb4 Nc6 57. b5 Ne5+ 58. Kd4 Nxg4 59. Kc5 Re5+ 60. Kc6 Rxh5 61. b6 Ne5+ 62. Kc7 Nc4 63. b7 Rc5+ 64. Kd8 Rb5 65. Kc7 Rc5+ 66. Kd8 Rb5 67. Kc7 {A suffered draw for Carlsen!} *

Carlsen almost gave Caruana a 3-0 start, but the Norwegian held on, barely

Svidler, Peter ½-½ Topalov, Veselin
What would normally be a very interesting game was overshadowed by the remaining duels. A complex position gave Svidler some chances, but somehow Topalov always managed to hold in every variation.

Grischuk, Alexander 1-0 Aronian, Levon
A truly unexplainable situation. Aronian forgot his opening preparation, and then the following happened:

Black has just replied 13.h5 with 13...Qf5?!, though he is already worse. Here Grischuk played the wonderful 14.Rh4! and Black's position is absolutely hopeless. after 14...exd3 15. Rf4 Black's queen was trapped and the rest of the game was simple for Grischuk. (14...Nc5 15. Bxe4! Nxe4 16. Qe2 is hopeless as well).

A nice gift for Grischuk, who did not waste his chances

Standings

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Schedule of Events

Date
Time
Event
Venue
Playchess commentary
02.06.2014 17.00 Blitz Flor & Fjære  
03.06.2014 15.30 Round 1 Scandic Stavanger Forus Daniel King
04.06.2014 15.30 Round 2 Scandic Stavanger Forus Simon Williams
05.06.2014 15.30 Round 3 Scandic Stavanger Forus Yasser Seirawan
07.06.2014 15.30 Round 4 Vågen VGS, Sandnes Yasser Seirawan
08.06.2014 15.30 Round 5 Scandic Stavanger Forus Yasser Seirawan
09.06.2014 15.30 Round 6 Aarbakke fabrikkhall, Bryne Chris Ward
10.06.2014 15.30 Round 7 Scandic Stavanger Forus Daniel King
12.06.2014 15.30 Round 8 Scandic Stavanger Forus Simon Williams
13.06.2014 14.30 Round 9 Scandic Stavanger Forus Daniel King

Pairings

Round 01 – June 03 2014, 15:30h
Levon Aronian 2815
½-½
Simen Agdestein 2628
Sergey Karjakin 2771
½-½
Veselin Topalov 2772
Alexander Grischuk 2792
0-1
Fabiano Caruana 2791
Peter Svidler 2753
½-½
Vladimir Kramnik 2783
Magnus Carlsen 2881
½-½
Anish Giri 2752
Round 02 – June 04 2014, 15:30h
Simen Agdestein 2628
½-½
Anish Giri 2752
Vladimir Kramnik 2783
½-½
Magnus Carlsen 2881
Fabiano Caruana 2791
1-0
Peter Svidler 2753
Veselin Topalov 2772
0-1
Alexander Grischuk 2792
Levon Aronian 2815
1-0
Sergey Karjakin 2771
Round 03 – June 05 2014, 15:30h
Sergey Karjakin 2771
½-½
Simen Agdestein 2628
Alexander Grischuk 2792
1-0
Levon Aronian 2815
Peter Svidler 2753
½-½
Veselin Topalov 2772
Magnus Carlsen 2881
½-½
Fabiano Caruana 2791
Anish Giri 2752
0-1
Vladimir Kramnik 2783
Round 04 – June 07 2014, 15:30h
Simen Agdestein 2628   Vladimir Kramnik 2783
Fabiano Caruana 2791   Anish Giri 2752
Veselin Topalov 2772   Magnus Carlsen 2881
Levon Aronian 2815   Peter Svidler 2753
Sergey Karjakin 2771   Alexander Grischuk 2792
Round 05 – June 08 2014, 15:30h
Alexander Grischuk 2792   Simen Agdestein 2628
Peter Svidler 2753   Sergey Karjakin 2771
Magnus Carlsen 2881   Levon Aronian 2815
Anish Giri 2752   Veselin Topalov 2772
Vladimir Kramnik 2783   Fabiano Caruana 2791
Round 06 – June 09 2014, 15:30h
Simen Agdestein 2628   Fabiano Caruana 2791
Veselin Topalov 2772   Vladimir Kramnik 2783
Levon Aronian 2815   Anish Giri 2752
Sergey Karjakin 2771   Magnus Carlsen 2881
Alexander Grischuk 2792
 
Peter Svidler 2753
Round 07 – June 10 2014, 15:30h
Peter Svidler 2753   Simen Agdestein 2628
Magnus Carlsen 2881   Alexander Grischuk 2792
Anish Giri 2752   Sergey Karjakin 2771
Vladimir Kramnik 2783   Levon Aronian 2815
Fabiano Caruana 2791   Veselin Topalov 2772
Round 08 – June 12 2014, 15:30h
Simen Agdestein 2628   Veselin Topalov 2772
Levon Aronian 2815   Fabiano Caruana 2791
Sergey Karjakin 2771   Vladimir Kramnik 2783
Alexander Grischuk 2792   Anish Giri 2752
Peter Svidler 2753   Magnus Carlsen 2881
Round 09 – June 13 2014, 14:30h
Magnus Carlsen 2881   Simen Agdestein 2628
Anish Giri 2752   Peter Svidler 2753
Vladimir Kramnik 2783   Alexander Grischuk 2792
Fabiano Caruana 2791   Sergey Karjakin 2771
Veselin Topalov 2772   Levon Aronian 2815

Links

The games are being 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.



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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thehaymaker thehaymaker 6/5/2014 09:48
That was the quickest recap of a round I have ever seen on ChessBase. Literally, as the round was ending.
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