Svidler, Zvjaginsev, Rublevsky – players to watch

12/21/2005 – Four decisive games today in the Russian Championship Superfinal in Moscow. Morozevich apparently lost because he overslept and did not appear in the tournament hall in time. But Peter Svidler, Sergey Rublevsky and Vadim Zvjaginsev (picture), the reserve player, scored clean, exciting victories. We bring you games, results and pictures.

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58th Russian Championship Superfinal

The final stage of the Russian Championship is taking place from December 19-30, 2005, in Moscow, with rounds starting each day at 15:00h local time. It is a 12 player round robin, with time controls of 100/40, then 50/20, 10/rest, with a 30 seconds increment from move one. The total prize fund is US $130,000, with $40,000 going to the winner

Round three report

Round 3: Wednesday, December 21, 2005
Tomashevsky, Evgeny
0-1
Svidler, Peter
Motylev, Alexander
½-½
Kramnik, Vladimir
Rublevsky, Sergei
1-0
Dreev, Alexey
Jakovenko, Dmitry
1-0
Morozevich, Alexander
Khalifman, Alexander
½-½
Bareev, Evgeny
Volkov, Sergey
0-1
Zvjaginsev, Vadim
GamesReport

Khalifman-Bareev: Alexander Khalifman was not feeling like a fight today, after his traumatic round two loss to Zvjaginsev, and offered a draw on move 15 in a position well known to theory. His opponent Evgeny Bareev accepted, possible because he remembered having exactly the same position in a blitz game against Grischuk in 2001, one he duly went on to lose.


In the playing hall, from left to right: Sergey Volkov vs Vadim Zvjaginsev, Evgeny Tomashevsky vs Peter Svidler, Dima Yakovenko (waiting for Morozevich to turn up), Sergei Rublevsky vs Alexey Dreev, Alexander Motylev, Alexander Khalifman.

Jakovenko-Morozevich: was a no-show by Black. We do not know what transpired, but apparently Morozevich overslept and did not appear in the playing hall in time. Dmitry Jakovenko played 1.d4 and after the prescribed waiting period was awarded the forfeit point.


Alexander Motylev vs Vladimir Kramnik,
Alexander Khalifman vs Evgeny Bareev (background)

Motylev-Kramnik: White played 14 moves of Petroff theory, after which Black produced a well prepared novelty which led to a 22-move draw.


Excellent preparation: GM Vladimir Kramnik

Motylev,A (2632) - Kramnik,V (2739) [C43]
ch-RUS Superfinal Moscow RUS (3), 21.12.2005
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.d4 Nxe4 4.Bd3 d5 5.Nxe5 Nd7 6.Nxd7 Bxd7 7.0-0 Bd6 8.c4 c6 9.cxd5 cxd5 10.Nc3 Nxc3 11.bxc3 0-0 12.Qh5 g6 13.Qxd5 Qc7 14.c4

This position occurred in a number of games, including one between Anand and Ivanchuk at the Calvià Olympiad in 2004 (Ivanchuk played 14...Be6 and the game was drawn in 40 moves). Kramnik had prepared 14...Bc6N, which forces 15.Qg5. Now after 15...Bxh2+ 16.Kh1 Bd6 Motylev played the sharp 17.d5, for which Kramnik was ready

17...Rae8 18.f4. 18.dxc6 doesn't work, because after 18...Re5 White loses the queen: 19.Qh4/h6 Rh5(+) or 19.Q~ Rh5+ and 20...Bh2+. 18...f6 19.Qg3 Bd7 and Motylev quickly went for the perpetual: 20.Bxg6 hxg6 21.Qxg6+ Kh8 22.Qh6+ ½-½

Rublevsky-Dreev: White took advantage of an overworked black queen, driving it back to its original square and then launching his own vicious attack.


After three rounds in the joint lead: GM Sergei Rublevsky

Rublevsky,S (2652) - Dreev,A (2694) [B51]
ch-RUS Superfinal Moscow RUS (3), 21.12.2005
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 d6 4.Bxc6+ bxc6 5.0-0 Bg4 6.h3 Bh5 7.e5 dxe5 8.g4 e4 9.gxh5 exf3 10.Nc3 Rc8 11.Qxf3 e6 12.d3 Qf6 13.Qg3 Qf5 14.Re1 Qxh5 15.Re5 Qg6 16.Rg5 Qf6 17.Ne4 Qd8

White is on the attack: 18.Rxg7 Nf6. Black cannot take, because of the forced line 18...Bxg7 19.Qxg7 Qd4 20.Qxd4 cxd4 21.Nd6+ Kd7 22.Nxf7 Ne7 23.Nxh8 Rxh8, and White has a healthy extra pawn. 19.Nxf6+ Qxf6 20.Rg4 Be7 and now Dreev is effortly outplayed by Rublevsky, who has developed into a top-level grandmaster. 21.Bf4 Qf5 22.Re1 Bf6 23.Be5 h5 24.Bxf6 Qxf6 25.Ra4 Qe7 26.Qg7 Rf8 27.Re5 h4 28.Rh5 Rd8 29.Rhxh4 Rd5 30.Kf1 Rg5 31.Qh7 Rfg8 32.Rhg4 Rxg4 33.hxg4 Qg5 34.Ke2 Kf8 35.Qh5 Qe7 36.Qe5 Rg5 37.Qh8+ Rg8 38.Qe5 Rg5 39.Qb8+ Kg7 40.Rxa7 Qf6 41.Ra8 1-0.


Alexey Dreev

Volkov-Zvjaginsev: Vadim Zvjaginsev came into the Superfinal as one of the replacements, when Grischuk and Najer withdrew at the last moment. But the 29-year-old is showing excellent form and, after three rounds, is in the lead with Svidler and Rublevsky.


Winning streak: GM Vadim Zvjaginsev

Volkov,S1 (2614) - Zvjaginsev,V (2659) [D61]
ch-RUS Superfinal Moscow RUS (3), 21.12.2005
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Be7 4.Nf3 Nf6 5.Bg5 0-0 6.Qc2 c6 7.e3 Nbd7 8.cxd5 Nxd5 9.Bxe7 Qxe7 10.Be2 Re8 11.0-0 Nxc3 12.bxc3 e5 13.a4 e4 14.Nd2 Nf6 15.Rfb1 Bg4 16.Bf1 Rad8 17.c4 c5 18.dxc5 Bc8 19.Nb3 Qe5 20.h3 Qg5 21.Kh1 Re5 22.Rd1 Rde8 23.Rd6 Qh4 24.Rad1 Rf5 25.R1d2.

White is doing fine, in spite of the awe-inspiring black kingside attack. But the secret is of course to give the opponent ample opportunity to err. 25...Ng4. White can easily defend with 26.Kh1, after which Black has nothing we could find. But he panics: 26.g3?? Qxg3! Now 27.fxg3 Rxf1+ 28.Kg2 Nxe3+ is winning for White, but the alternative is no better: 27.hxg4 Qh4+ 28.Kg1 Qxg4+ 29.Bg2 Rg5 30.f4 exf3 31.Rd8 f2+ 0-1.


Buckled under pressure: GM Sergey Volkov

Tomashevsky-Svidler: This game saw youth vs experience, with the second half of the equation seemingly getting stronger by the month. One must remember that just two months ago Peter Svidler tied for second place at the FIDE World Championship in San Luis, performing there at a 2814 level.


Evgeny Tomashevsky vs Peter Svidler

Tomashevsky,E (2564) - Svidler,P (2740) [A29]
ch-RUS Superfinal Moscow RUS (3), 21.12.2005
1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.g3 Nd4 5.Bg2 Nxf3+ 6.Bxf3 Bb4 7.Qb3 Bc5 8.d3 c6 9.0-0. In a blitz game against Svidler in 2001 Zvjaginsev had played 9.g4 d6 10.g5 Ng8 11.Ne4 Bb6 12.Qc2 Bc7 13.c5 dxc5 14.Qxc5 and won. 9...0-0 10.Bg5 Be7 11.Rfd1 d6 12.Rac1 h6 13.Bd2 Qc7 14.Bg2 Bf5 15.Qa4 Qd7 16.b4 a6 17.Qb3 b5 18.a4 Be6 19.Qb2 d5 20.cxd5 cxd5 21.axb5 axb5 22.Ra1 Rfc8 23.Rdc1 Bh3 24.Bh1 Rxa1 25.Rxa1 d4 26.Ne4 Nd5 27.Qa3 Qc7.

The black pressure is becoming oppressive and the 18-year-old GM Tomashevsky buckles under it. 28.Rc1? 28.Bf3 was better, protecting the vulnerable e2-pawn. 28...Bxb4. Now the black b-pawn becomes a giant. 29.Qb2 Qe7 and now comes a petite combination which helps White not a whit: 30.Nf6+ gxf6 31.Rxc8+ Bxc8 32.Bxd5 Bxd2 33.Qxd2 Qc5 and with ...Qc3 looming and the unstoppable b-pawn White resigned. 0-1.


Demolished by Svidler: GM Eugeny Tomashevsky

Pictures by courtesy of RussiaChess

Current standings

Previous Results

Round 1: Monday, December 19, 2005
Rublevsky, Sergei
1-0
Bareev, Evgeny
Svidler, Peter
1-0
Kramnik, Vladimir
Jakovenko, Dmitry
½-½
Zvjaginsev, Vadim
Khalifman, Alexander
½-½
Volkov, Sergey
Motylev, Alexander
½-½
Dreev, Alexey
Tomashevsky, Evgeny
½-½
Morozevich, Alexander

Round 2: Tuesday, December 20, 2005
Svidler, Peter
½-½
Motylev, Alexander
Zvjaginsev, Vadim
1-0
Khalifman, Alexander
Morozevich, Alexander
½-½
Rublevsky, Sergei
Dreev, Alexey
½-½
Tomashevsky, Evgeny
Kramnik, Vladimir
1-0
Volkov, Sergey
Bareev, Evgeny
½-½
Jakovenko, Dmitry

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