Recommended: ChessBase Magazine #160

by ChessBase
7/28/2014 – "They had written him off and he was treated like a pariah in his own kingdom that he had reigned for years," writes Prof Nagesh Havanur of his compatriot Viswanathan Anand. But then "he staged a triumphant return with first place in Candidates’ Tournament." All of this is part of ChessBase Magazine 160, which brings you a wealth of entertaining and educational material. Review.

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ChessBase Magazine #160

Review by Prof Nagesh Havanur

They had written him off and he was treated like a pariah in his own kingdom that he had reigned for years. After all, a deposed monarch deserves neither dignity nor respect. That’s the way of the world. “But then who was to blame?” His detractors would ask. His form had deteriorated and it reached its nadir with the world championship last year. The score, +0, –3, =7 spoke for itself.

Then followed the Zürich Tournament this year and he finished a miserable fifth. Chess has become a fierce competitive sport demanding tremendous energy and stamina. At this level it is only for the young. It’s time for him to retire, murmured the pundits and even his fans gave up on him. But no one had reckoned with the Tiger from Madras. He staged a triumphant return with first place in Candidates’ Tournament. It speaks for the strength of the field that Aronian and Topalov occupied the last places in the cross table. This issue rightly celebrates the outstanding event, with the winner himself annotating the encounter with Topalov.

One game that was widely debated was his draw with Andreikin in the 12th round.

Here is the position two moves before the time control, with Andreikin playing 38…Na4+. Vishy opted for 39.Kb3 Nc5+ 40.Kc2 Na4+ 41. Kb3 draw. The commentators had a field day, claiming how he could have won. But did they understand what was happening? Here is a comparison of what he saw and they didn’t.

[Event "Candidates' 2014 "] [Site "?"] [Date "2014.03.27"] [Round "?"] [White "Anand, Viswanathan"] [Black "Andreikin, Dmitry"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "3r2k1/2qP4/5rpp/1p2N3/nR3P2/p4Q2/P1K3P1/2BR4 w - - 0 39"] [PlyCount "5"] [EventDate "2014.??.??"] 39. Kb3 {This move allowing repetition just before time control is understandable.} ({Otherwise he would have chosen} 39. Rc4 $1 $18 {here itself. }) 39... Nc5+ 40. Kc2 Na4+ 41. Kb3 {It was only now that Vishy offered a draw.} ({He calculated} 41. Rc4 $1 {A far from obvious move. So far White was a piece up. Now he offers his rook.What is the idea? On the one hand it paves way for the queen to reach e7 via a3 and on the other it provides a shield for the king with the Black pawn on c4.} bxc4 42. Qxa3 ({Most commentators only came up with the weaker} 42. Be3) 42... Nc5 43. Rd5 Nd3 44. Qe7 Qb6 {" Here I spent some time looking and I failed to see} 45. Rb5 $1 {the only move to win," said Vishy.}) ({He calculated the other line as well.} 41. Kd2 Qd6+ 42. Nd3 Rxd7 { and commented, " In one move I have lost the important pawn that I have and also removed my knight from e5 to d3. Though I am a piece up, I must now sit and play with my king on d2 against a queen and two rooks on open files. This wasn't anything like a one-way bet and actually quite scary. I calculated and was getting tired and a mistake was as likely as a good move, and with some reluctance I agreed a draw."}) 1/2-1/2

If Vishy was the winner of the tournament, Vlad was the tragic hero.

It was he who had persuaded Vishy to play in the Candidates:"We really spoke about it in London and Vishy was unsure by that time. I advised him to participate because I really thought he had a chance and I just told him so.... Also I think he has all chances to win the match against Carlsen. I had similar crises, so I know what was happening inside him."

It may be recalled that Vlad lost the title to Vishy in 2008 and ever since he has been making serious efforts to regain the crown. All the same he encouraged his legendary rival to join the contest, not even concerned that this would adversely affect his own chances. Friendship matters. How many would be so unselfish and generous in the present world?

It’s hard to explain what went wrong with him in this tournament. He is not the kind of player who would offer excuses for himself either. Here is a dramatic moment from one of his games:

[Event "Candidates' Tournament "] [Site "?"] [Date "2014.03.15"] [Round "?"] [White "Svidler, Peter"] [Black "Kramnik, Vladimir"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "5bk1/3r1p2/2QP3p/4p1pP/1p4P1/1P1R1P2/q4BK1/8 b - - 0 41"] [PlyCount "20"] [EventDate "2014.??.??"] {Black's position looks desperate, but Kramnik has an amazing resource.} 41... e4 $1 42. fxe4 (42. Qxd7 $2 exd3 43. Qe8 d2 44. d7 d1=Q 45. d8=Q Qxd8 46. Qxd8 Qxb3 $17 {is good for Black.}) 42... Qe2 $3 {The point.} 43. Rf3 $1 {Svidler combines attack and defence.} (43. Qxd7 $2 Qxd3 44. Qc6 Bxd6 $11 {is rather weak.}) (43. Re3 $2 {easily loses.} Qxg4+ 44. Rg3 (44. Bg3 Rxd6 45. Qc2 Re6 $19 ) 44... Rxd6 45. Rxg4 Rxc6 $19) 43... Rxd6 44. Qe8 f6 45. e5 $1 {Threatening 46.Qg6+ followed by 47.exd6 and it looks decisive.} f5 $3 {The rook is taboo.} (45... fxe5 $4 46. Qxf8+ Kh7 47. Rf7#) ({Not} 45... Qxe5 $2 46. Qxe5 fxe5 47. Rxf8+ $1 Kxf8 48. Bc5 Ke7 49. Bxb4 $1 $18 {as pointed out by Mihail Marin in this issue}) ({Or} 45... Ra6 46. Qc8 $1 ({The other line takes longer.} 46. Qg6+ Bg7 47. exf6 Qxf3+ $1 {A brave attempt that does not save the game} 48. Kxf3 Rxf6+ 49. Qxf6 Bxf6 50. Bc5 $18 (50. Ke4 $18 {is as good.})) 46... Rb6 47. Qf5 Bg7 48. Re3 Qa6 49. e6 $18) (45... Rb6 $2 {loses in spectacular fashion.} 46. Qg6+ ({Marin gives} 46. Kg3 Ra6 47. Re3 {which also wins a bit prosaically. }) 46... Bg7 47. Rd3 $1 Qxg4+ 48. Kf1 Qc8 49. Bxb6 $18) 46. gxf5 ({Not} 46. Rxf5 $2 Qxg4+ 47. Bg3 Rd2+ 48. Rf2 Rxf2+ 49. Kxf2 Qd4+) 46... Rf6 {Threatening 47...Rxf5 48.Rxf5 Qg4+} 47. Kg3 ({Not} 47. Re3 $2 Qg4+ 48. Bg3 Ra6 $132) 47... Qe4 48. Bc5 Qe1+ 49. Bf2 Qe4 50. Bc5 Qe1+ 51. Bf2 1/2-1/2

A masterpiece in which attack meets counterattack. In this issue of ChessBase Magazine the game is analysed in detail by Mihail Marin and only for reasons of space I have had to forego it here. Overall, this was a great event and a worthy successor to Candidates’ 2013. In this issue all the games have a running commentary by Danny King and also regular annotations by grandmasters.

Two other important events covered here are European Championship won by Motylev and Gashimov Memorial Tournament won by Carlsen. The first event had a field of 257 participants and 11 rounds. Motylev made a staggering score, 9/11 (+7, –0, =4) to win the title. The second event held in Shamkir was a worthy tribute to Vugar Gashimov with a strong field vying for honours.

Carlsen did have a rough passage with losses to Fabiano Caruana...

... and to Taimur Radjabov.

But he managed to win by a narrow margin. Both these games are annotated by the winners. Radjabov was going through poor form in the last few years and it’s a happy augury that he is showing his class as before. Caruana continues to be a threat to Carlsen and the rivalry between these players would be worth watching in coming years.

In Shamkir Carlsen impressed with his miniature against Mamedyarov. Shakhriyar is a dangerous player and attacked in characteristic style only to be felled with a touch of ju-jitsu by Carlsen.

This brings me to other sections of the issue. There are as many as 13 opening surveys from Sicilian to Slav. You may take your pick. If you are a d4 player, check out Michal Krasenkow’s piece on Queen’s Gambit Accepted. In case you are looking for a dynamic system against d4, take a good look at the essays on Leningrad Dutch (Boris Schipkov and Mihail Marin). Here is an inspiring tabiya from the Leningrad analysed in this issue.

Levon Aronian-Magnus Carlsen, Sinquefield 2013 (A85)

In addition to opening surveys there are trademark sections on strategy, tactics and the endgame. Dorian Rogozenco’s essay on king safety is a mixed bag, illustrations and ideas are rather loosely put together. On the positive side I was delighted to see the following game:

[Event "London"] [Site "London"] [Date "1899.07.05"] [Round "27"] [White "Pillsbury, Harry Nelson"] [Black "Chigorin, Mikhail"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "D07"] [PlyCount "70"] [EventDate "1899.??.??"] [EventRounds "28"] [EventCountry "ENG"] [Source "ChessBase"] [SourceDate "1999.07.01"] 1. d4 d5 2. c4 Nc6 3. Nf3 Bg4 4. e3 e6 5. Nc3 Bb4 6. Qb3 Bxf3 7. gxf3 Nge7 8. Bd2 O-O 9. Bd3 Rb8 10. cxd5 Nxd5 11. O-O-O Bxc3 12. Bxc3 b5 13. Bd2 Rb6 14. Rdg1 a5 15. f4 f5 16. Rg3 a4 17. Qd1 Ncb4 18. Bxb4 Nxb4 19. Rhg1 Rf7 20. Bb1 a3 21. bxa3 Nd5 22. Qb3 b4 23. axb4 Rxb4 24. Qd3 c5 25. dxc5 Qa5 26. Bc2 Qxa2 27. f3 Rc4 28. R3g2 Rd7 29. c6 Rxc6 30. Qd4 Qa3+ 31. Kd2 Rxc2+ 32. Kxc2 Nxe3+ 33. Kb1 Rxd4 34. Rxg7+ Kf8 35. Rg8+ Ke7 0-1

A no-holds-barred contest between two legendary players! I would have loved to see the whole game deeply annotated.

The challenge for readers is the following position that was reached after some hair-raising play by both sides. White sacrificed a lot of material, was still trying to win, a rook down in the ending and only reluctantly took a draw. Can you do better?

Alexander Petrov-Paul Journoud, Leipzig 1863

White to play (solution at the end of this review)

In all there are 2617 OTB games of which 187 are annotated. This time I did not see the trade mark feature, Telechess Section with CC games. Hopefully, commentators, Robert Alvarez and Juan Morgado would be back in the next issue.

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[Event "Leipzig"] [Site "Leipzig"] [Date "1863.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "Petrov, Alexander"] [Black "Journoud, Paul"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "C39"] [PlyCount "65"] [EventDate "1862.??.??"] [EventType "tourn"] [EventRounds "9"] [EventCountry "GER"] [Source "ChessBase"] [SourceDate "2011.11.24"] 1. e4 e5 2. f4 exf4 3. Nf3 g5 4. h4 g4 5. Ne5 Nf6 6. Bc4 d5 7. exd5 Bd6 8. d4 Nh5 9. Bb5+ Kf8 10. Nc3 Ng3 11. Bxf4 Nxh1 12. Qd2 Qxh4+ 13. g3 Nxg3 14. Qf2 Nf5 15. Qxh4 Nxh4 16. Bh6+ Kg8 17. Ne4 Be7 18. Be8 Nf3+ 19. Kf2 Nxe5 20. dxe5 Bf5 21. Nf6+ Bxf6 22. exf6 Nd7 23. Bxd7 Bxd7 24. Re1 $2 (24. Rh1 $1 Bf5 25. Re1 $3 Bxc2 26. Kg3 Bf5 27. Re7 Rc8 28. Kf4 {and Black runs out of moves.}) 24... Re8 25. Rxe8+ Bxe8 26. Kg3 Bd7 27. c4 a5 28. a3 a4 29. c5 Bc8 30. d6 cxd6 31. cxd6 Bd7 32. Kf4 Be6 33. Kg3 {Suhle & Neumann: Die neueste Theorie und Praxis des Schachspiels, 1865, p. 212.} 1/2-1/2

All Opening Surveys in CBM #160

Stohl: English Opening A30
1.c4 c5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.g3 b6 4.Bg2 Bb7 5.0-0 g6 6.Nc3 Bg7 7.d4 cxd4 8.Qxd4 d6

White usually responds to Black’s double fianchetto with a setup in which the most salient characteristic is the transfer of the queen to h4. Igor Stohl takes some recent games by Sergey Karjakin as a starting point so as to inform you about the latest state of play.

Moskalenko: Budapest Gambit A52
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.Bf4 g5

4.Bf4 actually deserves to be preferred to 4.Nf3, but many players probably feared 4...g5. Baadur Jobava’s victory with Black over Radoslaw Wojtaszek may serve as confirmation of that. Viktor Moskalenko acquaints you with the advantages and disadvantages of the pawn move.

Schipkov: Dutch Defence A85
1.d4 f5 2.c4 Nf6 3.Nc3 d6 4.Nf3 g6 5.Bf4 Bg7 6.e3 0-0

When on the lookout for variations which avoid the Leningrad System, one could turn to the setup with Bf4, in any case that is what Levon Aronian has also played. But, as Boris Schipkov demonstrates in his article, Black can obtain a good game.

Marin: Leningrad Dutch A88
1.d4 f5 2.c4 Nf6 3.g3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.Nf3 0-0 6.0-0 d6 7.Nc3 c6 8.b3

Recently Black has been doing very well in the Leningrad Variation with 7...c6. Mihail Marin now undertakes the more ambitious attempt to achieve something of an advantage for White. To do so he has chosen the “natural” 8.b3.

Karolyi: Alekhine Defence B05
1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.Nf3 Bg4 5.Be2 c6

With this article Tibor Karolyi would like to bring you a repertoire against the old main variation (4...Bg4) of the Alekhine Defence. In Part 1 the setup with 5...c6 is dealt with, but it is not at all difficult for White to obtain a safe advantage.

Szabo: Sicilian Defence B44
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.Nb5 d6 6.c4 Nf6 7.N1c3 a6 8.Na3 Be7 9.Be2 0-0 10.0-0 b6 11.Be3 Bb7 12.Qb3 Nd7 13.Rfd1

A Hedgehog position is reached soon after 5.Nb5 and the position in the diagram then comes about almost “automatically”. In his investigations Krisztian Szabo comes to the conclusion that the variation is very playable for both sides.

Bojkov/Markidis: Sicilian Defence B51
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Bb5+ Nc6 4.0-0 Bd7 5.Re1 Nf6 6.c3 a6 7.Bf1 Bg4

This would be a simple variation for Black if he could play d6 and Nc6 (or vice versa), and as a matter of fact many top players had the variation in their repertoire. But as Dejan Bojkov and Konstantinos Markidis prove, White can obtain an advantage.

Schandorff: Petroff Defence C42
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.Nc3 Nxc3 6.dxc3 Be7 7.Be3

This (5.Nc3) is a very comfortable variation against the Petroff; White often gets the bishop pair and a pleasant game. But as Lars Schandorff shows, Black nevertheless equalises. So are the days of this variation numbered or is it sufficient nowadays to have a pleasant game without any advantage?

Havasi: Ruy Lopez C84
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 6.d3 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.a3 0-0 9.Nc3

This setup is still quite new, but is becoming more and more popular: White wants to bring his Nc3 rapidly to d5 and only then play c3. Gergö Havasi has examined the variation and recommends 9...Be6 for Black so as to fight for the d5-square.

Kuzmin: Slav Defence D10
1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 dxc4 4.e4 b5 5.a4 b4 6.Nb1 Ba6 7.Qc2

The variation with 6.Nb1 has been known for quite some time, but a new development is being introduced with the pawn sacrifice 7.Qc2. According to Alexey Kuzmin’s analyses Black has not looked too comfortable in practice so far.

Krasenkow: Queen's Gambit Accepted D26
1.d4 d5 2.c4 dxc4 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.e3 e6 5.Bxc4 c5 6.Qe2

On the next move White wants to take on c5. If Black now plays 6...cxd4 7.exd4 to transpose to an IQP position, it will be hard for him to equalise according to the analyses by Michal Krasenkow. But in the other lines in Part 1 with 6...a6 7.dxc5 White also obtains an advantage.

Postny: Grünfeld Defence D71
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 c6 4.Bg2 d5 5.Qa4

The intention of the surprising 5.Qa4 is obvious: White wants to take on d5 without the c6-pawn being able to recapture. But Evgeny Postny shows that Black has several good replies, including also 5...Bg7 6.cxd5 Nxd5.

Sumets: Grünfeld Defence/Schlechter Defence D94
1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.e3 g6 5.Nf3 Bg7 6.Bd3/Be2 0-0 7.0-0 dxc4 8.Bxc4 Bg4 9.Be2

According to the analyses of Andrey Sumets the somewhat surprising retreat of the bishop allows White to obtain a clear advantage. Black usually concedes the bishop pair and the centre too, that is too much.

Free opening survey - download a sample! Krisztian Szabo:
"Don't fear the hedgehog " (Sicilian Paulsen with 4...Nc6 5.Nb5 d6 6.c4)

The author starts his analysis with move number 13 - quite advanced but the position arises from the most frequently played moves in the Sicilian Paulsen after White's 5.Sb5: 1.e4 c5 2.Sf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Sxd4 Sc6 5.Sb5 d6 6.c4 Sf6 7.S1c3 a6 8.Sa3 Le7 9.Le2 0-0 10.0-0 b6 11.Le3 Lb7 12.Db3 Sd7 13.Tfd1

The most popular is a move which is not typical of the Hedgehog 13...Nc5, with which Black takes into account the specific position on the board. After 14.Qc2 less attention is paid to 14...Qc7 in the article on the DVD; 14...Qf6 is more interesting and is usually met with 15.Rac1 or 15.Rab1 which was successfully played by young Indian GM Parimarjan Negi only recently.

Rainer Knaak draws the following conclusion from Szabos article: "5.Nb5 is not very popular with top players, but that could change since the positions which arise are full of possibilities."

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