World Cup R5: Malakhov and Karjakin in the semifinals

12/4/2009 – In two games the players were obviously quite content to leave everything to the tiebreaks: Jakovenko-Gelfand and Gashimov-Ponomariov were both drawn in 15 moves. Peter Svidler tried a King's Indian against Vladimir Malakhov but got nowhere; Shakhriyar Mamedyarov missed a clear chance against Sergey Karjakin, so he and Svidler were eliminated. Illustrated report.

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The FIDE World Chess Cup is taking place in Khanty-Mansiysk from November 20th to December 15th 2009. It is a seven-round knockout event with six rounds of matches comprising two games per round, with the winners progressing to the next round. The final seventh round consists of four games. The time control is 90 minutes for the first 40 moves followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game with an addition of 30 seconds per move from move one. Games start at 15:00h local time, which is GMT +5 hours = 11:00 a.m. European time = 5 a.m. New York. The World Chess Cup is an integral part of the World Championship Cycle 2009-2011.

Round five game two

The two pairings that had a decision yesterday left things unchanged today. Peter Svidler abandoned his Grünfeld and put his money on a Classical King's Indian. But his opponent, Vladimir Malakhov, a physicist by profession, kept everything under control and, with a 28-move draw, advanced to the semifinals.

Are you serious? Peter Svidler plays the King's Indian against Vladimir Malakhov

Malakhov,V (2706) - Svidler,P (2754) [E96]
World Cup Khanty-Mansiysk RUS (5.2), 04.12.2009
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 0-0 5.d4 d6 6.Be2 Nbd7 7.0-0 e5 8.Re1 c6 9.Bf1 a5 10.dxe5 dxe5 11.Na4 Qe7 12.Qc2 b6 13.Be3 Rb8 14.h3 Ba6 15.c5 Bxf1 16.Kxf1 b5 17.Nb6 Nxb6 18.cxb6 Rfc8 19.a4 Qe8 20.axb5 cxb5 21.Qd3 a4 22.b3 Rd8 23.Qb1 axb3 24.Qxb3 Nxe4 25.Ra7 Nd6 26.Bg5 Rd7 27.Nxe5 Bxe5 28.Qd5 Rxb6 draw. [Click to replay]

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov needed to win with the white pieces, and try he did. Just around move 30 it looked like he was on his way to equalising.

It's really simple: step, step, rock, left turn, forward progressive,
promenade – Shakh Mamedyarov, Vugar Gashimov

Mamedyarov,S (2719) - Karjakin,Sergey (2723) [E12]
World Cup Khanty-Mansiysk RUS (5.2), 04.12.2009
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.a3 Bb7 5.Nc3 d5 6.Bg5 Be7 7.Bxf6 Bxf6 8.cxd5 exd5 9.Qb3 0-0 10.Rd1 Re8 11.e3 c6 12.Bd3 Na6 13.0-0 Nc7 14.Rfe1 Ne6 15.Bb1 g6 16.Ba2 Bg7 17.e4 Qd7 18.Qa4 Nf4 19.h3 Re7 20.e5 Kh8 21.b4 f6 22.b5 cxb5 23.Qxb5 Rc8 24.Qb4 a5 25.Qb3 fxe5 26.dxe5 Rf8 27.Re3 Bh6 28.Nd4 Ne6 29.Nxe6 Rxe6? He should probably have recaptured with the queen.

Now 30.Nxd5 would have given the Super-GM from Azerbaijan a good chance to seriously play for a win, but instead Mamedyarov opted for the more passive 30.Re2, after which his 19-year-old Ukrainian opponent dropped the b-pawn but was able to hold the position without any more real danger. 30...Bg7 31.Nxd5 Rxe5 32.Rxe5 Bxe5 33.Qxb6 Qf5 34.Qe3 Bg7 35.Rd2 Rc8 36.f4 Bxd5 37.Rxd5 Qc2 38.Rd2 Qc1+ 39.Kh2 Rf8 40.g3 a4 41.h4 Bc3 42.Rd3 Qxa3 43.Qe5+ Bxe5 44.Rxa3 Bf6 45.Rxa4 Re8 46.Kh3 Kg7 47.Ra7+ Re7 48.Ra8 h6 49.Kg4 Rc7 50.Ra5 Be7 51.Ra6 h5+ 52.Kh3 Bf6 53.Ra8 Re7 54.Rb8 Bd4 55.Bb1 Bf6 56.Rb6 Re2 57.Bd3 Re3 58.Rd6 Re8 59.Rc6 Re3 60.Bb1 Re1 61.Bc2 Re3 62.Ra6 Re2 63.Bb1 Re1 64.Rb6 Re2 65.Rb7+ draw. [Click to replay]

Mamedyarov eliminated – only one top Azeri GM (Gashimov) left in the Cup

The other two games were micro-draws with all four players apparently eager to settle things in the tiebreaks on Saturday:

Jakovenko,D (2736) - Gelfand,B (2758) [D30]
World Cup Khanty-Mansiysk RUS (5.2), 04.12.2009
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 e6 4.Bg5 h6 5.Bxf6 Qxf6 6.Nbd2 Nd7 7.Rc1 c6 8.g3 g5 9.h3 Bg7 10.Bg2 0-0 11.0-0 Qe7 12.g4 f5 13.gxf5 exf5 14.cxd5 cxd5 15.Qb3 draw. [Click to replay]

Boris, they say, you must look after your brain in this cold weather. So I look after my brain...

With the winter fur hat off Boris Gelfand is ready to attack the game

Gashimov,V (2758) - Ponomariov,R (2739) [C18]
World Cup Khanty-Mansiysk RUS (5.2), 04.12.2009
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 c5 5.a3 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Nc6 7.Nf3 Qa5 8.Bd2 c4 9.a4 Bd7 10.g3 0-0-0 11.h4 f5 12.Ng5 Rf8 13.h5 Nh6 14.Rh4 Nf7 15.Nxf7 draw. [Click to replay]

Some ladies in the lobby showing us that chess can be FUN!

Photos by Galina Popova courtesy of FIDE

Results of round five

 Players  G1  G2   Tot
 Gelfand, Boris (ISR)
 Jakovenko, Dmitry (RUS)
 Ponomariov, Ruslan (UKR)
 Gashimov, Vugar (AZE)
 Svidler, Peter (RUS)
 Malakhov, Vladimir (RUS)
 Karjakin, Sergey (UKR)
 Mamedyarov, Shakh. (AZE)

Schedule of the World Cup 2009

Friday 20 November Opening Ceremony
Saturday 21 November Round 1- Game 1
Sunday 22 November Round 1 - Game 2
Monday 23 November Tiebreaks
Tuesday 24 November Round 2 - Game 1
Wednesday 25 November Round 2 - Game 2
Thursday 26 November Tiebreaks
Friday 27 November Round 3 - Game 1
Saturday 28 November Round 3 - Game 2
Sunday 29 November Tiebreaks
Monday 30 November Round 4 - Game 1
Tuesday 01 December Round 4 - Game 2
Wednesday 02 December Tiebreaks
Thursday 03 December Round 5 - Game 1
Friday 04 December Round 5 - Game 2
Saturday 05 December Tiebreaks
Sunday 06 December Round 6 - Game 1
Monday 07 December Round 6 - Game 2
Tuesday 08 December Tiebreaks
Wednesday 09 December Free Day
Thursday 10 December Round 7 - Game 1
Friday 11 December Round 7 - Game 2
Saturday 12 December Round 7 - Game 3
Sunday 13 December Round 7 - Game 4
Monday 14 December Tiebreaks / Closing
Tuesday 15 December Departures


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