Dortmund: Eljanov takes the lead, Kramnik and Anand draw second "No Castling" game

by ChessBase
7/16/2021 – After five rounds Pavel Eljanov leads the Deutschland Grand Prix in Dortmund with 4.0/5. On Thursday he won his morning game against Mateusz Bartel and in the afternoon he drew against Daniel Fridman. Vincent Keymer won a fine endgame against Gata Kamsky and Vishy Anand and Vladimir Kramnik drew the second game of their "No Castling" match. Chess legend Artur Jussupov made the ceremonial first move. | Photo: Christian Lünig

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On Thursday, 15 July, the second double round of the Deutschland Grand Prix was played in the Westfalenhalle in Dortmund. A total of three such double rounds are scheduled. On such days the first game starts at ten in morning, the second game follows at four in the afternoon.

Pavel Eljanov proved up to this demanding schedule. In the morning round (round 4) he defeated Mateusz Bartel.


13.Be3 Inviting the following sequence.

13...Nxe4 The alternative was 13...Na5 14.Bc2 Nc4 15.Bg5

14.Bd5 Rxb1 15.Rxb1 Nxc3 16.Qb3 Nxd5 16...exd4 17.Nxd4 Bxd4 18.Bxc6 Be6 19.Qc2 Bxe3 20.Qxc3 Bc5= Black has two pawns for the exchange and a solid position.

17.Qxd5 exd4 18.Nxd4 Ne7 19.Qa8 Bxd4 20.Bxd4 Bf5 21.Qxd8 Rxd8 22.Rb7 Compared to the line 16....exd4 here Black has problems with the coordination of his pieces.



23.Ra7 Bd3 Perhaps a better try was 23...Bc2!? 24.a5 (24.Rxa6 Nb4 25.Ra7 Nc6) 24...Bd3

24.Rd1 Bc4 25.Rc1 Bd3 26.Bc3 Nf4 27.Kh2 Ne2 28.Rd1 Nxc3 29.Rxd3 Nxa4 30.Rxc7 Kf8 31.Rf3 f6 32.Rg3 g5 33.Rf3 1–0

All other games in round 4 ended with a draw.

Results of round 4

Elo   Name Result   Name Elo
2658 GM Kamsky Gata ½ - ½ GM Ponomariov Ruslan 2631
2607 GM Kollars Dmitrij ½ - ½ GM Fridman Daniel 2608
2671 GM Eljanov Pavel 1 - 0 GM Bartel Mateusz 2626
2662 GM Kasimdzhanov Rustam ½ - ½ GM Meier Georg 2628
2599 GM Heimann Andreas ½ - ½ GM Keymer Vincent 2591

On Wednesday, in round 3, rain leaked through the wall of the Westfalenhalle, and Rustam Kasimdzhanov was so irritated by the water dripping down the roof inside the hall and near the playing area that he complained to the arbiter and when the arbiter declared that the sound was "acceptable", Kasimdzhanov gave up his game against Vincent Keymer. It was Keymer's first win after two losses and a draw.

But on Thursday Kasimdzhanov was back at the board and drew first against Georg Meier and then against Mateusz Bartel.

But in the afternoon round Keymer scored his first "real" win. He defeated Gata Kamsky in the endgame.


33.Qxf4 Qxf4 34.Nxf4 Bh6 35.Bxe5 Rxe5 36.Nd3 Bxc1 37.Rxc1 After 37.Nxe5 Bf4 38.Nc6 Rb2 Black has the better chances.



38.Nxc5 White now a pawn for the exchange and strong pawns in the center.

38...Kg7 39.Kf2 Kf6 40.h4 Rb6 40...g5!? 41.hxg5+ Kxg5

41.Ke3 Kf7 42.Ne6 Rbxe6 42...Rb7? 43.Nd8+

43.dxe6+ Kxe6 44.Rc6+ Kf7


45.Kf4 After Black returned the exchange White has the better rook endgame. But is that enough for a win?

45...Kg7 46.e5 Rf7+ 47.Ke4 Rd7 48.f4 Re7 49.Rc5 Kf8 50.Rc3 Kf7 51.Rc4 Kf8 52.Ra4 Kf7 53.Ra8 Re8 54.Ra7 The pawn endgame is a draw. 54.Rxe8 Kxe8 55.Kd5 Kd7 56.Kc5 Ke8 57.Kc6 Kd8

54...Re7? The right defense was 54...Rc8 e.g.: 55.Kd5 Rd8+ 56.Kc6 Rd4 57.Rxc7+ Ke6 58.Rg7 Rxf4 59.Rxg6+ Kxe5=


55.f5 gxf5+ 56.Kxf5 Now White is winning.

56...c6 57.e6+ Kf8 58.Ra1 But not 58.Rxe7 Kxe7 with a draw. 

58...Kg7 59.Rg1+ Kf8 60.Rd1 1–0

All the other games of round five ended in a draw.

Results of round 5

Elo   Name Result   Name Elo
2591 GM Keymer Vincent 1 - 0 GM Kamsky Gata 2658
2628 GM Meier Georg ½ - ½ GM Heimann Andreas 2599
2626 GM Bartel Mateusz ½ - ½ GM Kasimdzhanov Rustam 2662
2608 GM Fridman Daniel ½ - ½ GM Eljanov Pavel 2671
2631 GM Ponomariov Ruslan ½ - ½ GM Kollars Dmitrij 2607

No Castling Match V. Anand vs V. Kramnik

Kramnik and Anand

The second game in the No Castling World Masters between Vishy Anand and Vladimir Kramnik was somewhat less spectacular than their first game the day before and ended in a draw. Kramnik came to a small advantage with White, but it was not enough to win.

Kramnik and Anand discuss the game

Games NC World Masters


Standings Deutschland Grand Prix


Games Deutschland Grand Prix


More videos from Dortmund

The opening of the No Castling match between Anand and Kramnik

Pavel Eljanov shows his win against Vincent Keymer

Interview with Gata Kamsky after winning against Andreas Heimann

Translation from German: Johannes Fischer


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