Norway Blitz brilliancies and blunders

by Albert Silver
6/3/2014 – Every chess player enjoys a blitz game, and there is nothing quite like watching the best of the best slug it out between themselves. Chess fans got a major dose of it in the opening day of Norway, where the elite fought for the fun and prestige of it. The predominant feature of blitz games is tactical fireworks and many great shots were made and missed. Can you find them?

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...

Every chess player enjoys a blitz game, and there is nothing quite like watching the best of the best slug it out themselves between themselves. Chess fans got a major dose of it in the opening day of Norway, and many great shots were both made and missed. Can you find them?

Agdestein, Simen - Kramnik, Vladimir

The former Norwegian number one, once described by Kasparov as the
greatest amateur chess player on earth, just played Qd2, but missed a
trick. Black to play and win.

Agdestein, Simen - Topalov, Veselin

The Norwegian grandmaster showed he was not to be underestimated, and
beat Topalov with this continuation. White to play and win.

Topalov, Veselin - Aronian, Levon

The position was pure chaos, and White was attacking with great gusto,
but misses a deadly shot. Black to play and win.

Giri, Anish - Grischuk, Alexander

Young Giri was playing Grischuk, a player described as a 'blitzaholic', but
showed that his rise to world 15 was no coincidence. White to play and win.

Agdestein, Simen - Karjakin, Sergey

Sergey Karjakin, last year's winner of the blitz and the main event,
had a rough start, but here he was inspired. Black sacrificed a piece
to reach this position. There are several tempting continuations, but
which is best? Black to play and win.

Agdestein, Simen - Karjakin, Sergey

To conclude a great game, Black set up this amazing combination.
Black to play and win.

Aronian, Levon - Kramnik, Vladimir

The blitz skills of both players are renowned. This time Kramnik has
the last word. Black to play and win.

Caruana, Fabiano - Giri, Anish

This position comes from a line that might have occured. The great
Italian won the game all the same. White to play and win.

Aronian, Levon - Svidler, Peter

Levon Aronian had a great event, showing he was in excellent form.
Though he missed this shot against Svidler, he mounted a massive
attack and won nevertheless. Even if you find the first move, see if
you can work out the continuation or some of it. White to play and win.

Carlsen, Magnus - Caruana, Fabiano

Even world champions are entitled to cheapos... especially if they work!
White to play and win.

Solutions to the positions:

[Event "2nd Norway Blitz 2014"] [Site "Flor & Fjaere NOR"] [Date "2014.06.02"] [Round "1.1"] [White "Agdestein, Simen"] [Black "Kramnik, Vladimir"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B07"] [WhiteElo "2628"] [BlackElo "2783"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "2rqr1k1/1p1bpp1p/p2p1bpB/2n5/P2NP3/1PP3P1/3Q1PBP/R4RK1 b - - 0 15"] [PlyCount "7"] [EventDate "2014.06.02"] 15... e5 $1 (15... Bxd4 {would be a fatal mistake since} 16. Qxd4 Nxb3 {runs into} 17. Qg7# {Oops!}) 16. Nc2 {The knight is dislodged and thus} Nxb3 {is game over} 17. Qxd6 Nxa1 18. Rxa1 Be6 0-1 [Event "2nd Norway Blitz 2014"] [Site "Flor & Fjaere NOR"] [Date "2014.06.02"] [Round "2.3"] [White "Agdestein, Simen"] [Black "Topalov, Veselin"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "E70"] [WhiteElo "2628"] [BlackElo "2772"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "r1b1qrk1/1p5p/p2p1b2/2pN1P2/2Pnp3/3B3P/PP1QN1P1/R4RK1 w - - 0 19"] [PlyCount "11"] [EventDate "2014.06.02"] 19. Nxf6+ Rxf6 20. Qg5+ Kf7 21. Nxd4 cxd4 22. Qh5+ (22. Bxe4 {was also perfectly playable and possibly even stronger according to the engines, but the text move wins, so it is not a big deal.} Qxe4 23. Rae1 Qc6 24. Re6 $3 Bxe6 25. fxe6+ {Check!} Kxe6 26. Rxf6+ Ke7 27. Qg7+ Kd8 28. Rf8+) 22... Kf8 23. Qxe8+ Kxe8 24. Bxe4 1-0 [Event "2nd Norway Blitz 2014"] [Site "Flor & Fjaere NOR"] [Date "2014.06.02"] [Round "6.1"] [White "Topalov, Veselin"] [Black "Aronian, Levon"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "C44"] [WhiteElo "2772"] [BlackElo "2815"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "r3rk2/bpp2pp1/p4nnN/3qp1B1/2N5/2PP2PP/PP2Q2K/R4R2 b - - 0 21"] [PlyCount "7"] [EventDate "2014.06.02"] 21... e4 $1 {A discovered attack that the former world number one overlooked. Black is threatening both Qxg5 and exd3 winning the knight.} 22. Bxf6 (22. d4 Qxg5) 22... exd3 23. Qf3 Re2+ 24. Kh1 Qxc4 0-1 [Event "2nd Norway Blitz 2014"] [Site "Flor & Fjaere NOR"] [Date "2014.06.02"] [Round "6.5"] [White "Giri, Anish"] [Black "Grischuk, Alexander"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B90"] [WhiteElo "2752"] [BlackElo "2792"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "4q1k1/1b4p1/p2p2N1/1p6/2n1np2/P1NQ4/1PP5/R1B1K3 w Q - 0 27"] [PlyCount "7"] [EventDate "2014.06.02"] 27. Nd5 $1 {The immediate threat is Nge7+ cutting off the queen and Qxe4.} Nf6+ ({Now the discovered check} 27... Nc5+ {is refuted with} 28. Nde7+ Kf7 (28... Kh7 29. Qh3#) 29. Qf5#) 28. Nde7+ Kf7 29. Bxf4 Be4 30. Qg3 {and White has a winning material advantage.} 1-0 [Event "2nd Norway Blitz 2014"] [Site "Flor & Fjaere NOR"] [Date "2014.06.02"] [Round "8.2"] [White "Agdestein, Simen"] [Black "Karjakin, Sergey"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "E58"] [WhiteElo "2628"] [BlackElo "2771"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "3r1rk1/ppq2ppp/2n5/2p1p3/3PP1b1/P1P2N2/BB2QP2/2R2RK1 b - - 0 18"] [PlyCount "13"] [EventDate "2014.06.02"] {Although there are many tempting continuations, the most efficient is to quite simply exploit the wide open position of the king.} 18... Rd6 $1 19. Qe3 exd4 20. Nxd4 cxd4 21. cxd4 Rg6 $1 22. f4 {White's king has nowhere to run to.} ({Trying to run away with} 22. Kh1 $2 {just gets mated with} Bf3+ $1 23. Qxf3 Rh6+) 22... Bh3+ 23. Kh2 Bxf1 24. Rxf1 Qb6 {and Black is up a pawn and the exchange, and can harry White's king.} 0-1 [Event "2nd Norway Blitz 2014"] [Site "Flor & Fjaere NOR"] [Date "2014.06.02"] [Round "8.2"] [White "Agdestein, Simen"] [Black "Karjakin, Sergey"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "E58"] [WhiteElo "2628"] [BlackElo "2771"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "5rk1/pp3ppp/1qn5/8/3PPPr1/P4Q2/BB3R1K/8 b - - 0 26"] [PlyCount "7"] [EventDate "2014.06.02"] 26... Ne5 $3 {A fantastic move that frees the way for Black's queen.} 27. Qh3 { Black now has the amazing continutation} Nf3+ $3 {Yes, the move is very hard to find, but it is such a spectacular continuation that it had to be shown. If} 28. Rxf3 (28. Qxf3 Qh6+ 29. Qh3 Rh4) 28... Qxb2+ 29. Kh1 Rg6 {and there are simply too many threats for White to defend, such as Rh6, Qxa2, and various mates if the white queen moves away.} 0-1 [Event "2nd Norway Blitz 2014"] [Site "Flor & Fjaere NOR"] [Date "2014.06.02"] [Round "9.1"] [White "Aronian, Levon"] [Black "Kramnik, Vladimir"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "D37"] [WhiteElo "2815"] [BlackElo "2783"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "r5k1/N4pp1/2r2n2/1Qp3p1/8/PP4qP/6P1/2R1R2K b - - 0 34"] [PlyCount "9"] [EventDate "2014.06.02"] 34... Ng4 $1 {The threat of Qh2 mate is obvious, so taking is forced.} 35. hxg4 (35. Kg1 {just loses faster with} Qh2+ 36. Kf1 Rf6+ 37. Ke2 Rf2+ 38. Kd3 Qd6+ 39. Kc4 (39. Ke4 Qd4#) 39... Qd4#) 35... Rh6+ 36. Kg1 Qh2+ 37. Kf2 Rf6+ 38. Ke3 Rd8 $1 {and the king has nowhere to run to.} 1-0 [Event "2nd Norway Blitz 2014"] [Site "Flor & Fjaere NOR"] [Date "2014.06.02"] [Round "9.5"] [White "Caruana, Fabiano"] [Black "Giri, Anish"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "A05"] [WhiteElo "2791"] [BlackElo "2752"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "1q2bQ2/5p1p/5Np1/4p1k1/3pP3/3P1RP1/P1r2PK1/4bB2 w - - 0 44"] [PlyCount "3"] [EventDate "2014.06.02"] 44. Rf5+ gxf5 45. Qg7# 1-0 [Event "2nd Norway Blitz 2014"] [Site "Flor & Fjaere NOR"] [Date "2014.06.02"] [Round "1.5"] [White "Aronian, Levon"] [Black "Svidler, Peter"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "A35"] [WhiteElo "2815"] [BlackElo "2753"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "2rqr1k1/pp2bbpp/n4p2/2pn3N/4N3/PP2P1P1/1B1PQ1BP/2R2RK1 w - - 0 20"] [PlyCount "11"] [EventDate "2014.06.02"] 20. Nxg7 $3 Kxg7 21. Ng5 $1 {The knight is untouchable since the f6 pawn is pinned.} Rc6 22. Nxf7 Kxf7 23. Qh5+ Ke6 ({If} 23... Kg7 {White brings in the rook with} 24. Rc4 $1 $18) 24. Bxd5+ $1 {wins the piece since} Qxd5 25. Qxe8 1-0 [Event "2nd Norway Blitz 2014"] [Site "Flor & Fjaere NOR"] [Date "2014.06.02"] [Round "6.2"] [White "Carlsen, Magnus"] [Black "Caruana, Fabiano"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C07"] [WhiteElo "2881"] [BlackElo "2791"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "r1bq1rk1/pp2bppp/n3pn2/8/8/P1N2Q2/1PPN1PPP/R1B1KB1R w KQ - 0 11"] [PlyCount "3"] [EventDate "2014.06.02"] 11. Bxa6 $1 {What more is there to say? If} bxa6 12. Qxa8 1-0

You can watch Fabiano playing his blunder and reacting to Carlsen's 11.Bxa6 shot on this VG video




Born in the US, he grew up in Paris, France, where he completed his Baccalaureat, and after college moved to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He had a peak rating of 2240 FIDE, and was a key designer of Chess Assistant 6. In 2010 he joined the ChessBase family as an editor and writer at ChessBase News. He is also a passionate photographer with work appearing in numerous publications.
Discussion and Feedback Join the public discussion or submit your feedback to the editors


Discuss

Rules for reader comments

 
 

Not registered yet? Register

notyetagm notyetagm 6/4/2014 08:06
Thanks for bringing back this format, puzzles from recent tournament games. Chessbase used to do this quite regularly but stopped for some reason.

Maybe you can bring it back. :-)
akshat chandra akshat chandra 6/4/2014 04:31
Excellent article, Albert!
Enjoyed solving the positions.
1