[Event "Norway Chess 2021"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.07"]
[Round "2"]
[White "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Black "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "B30"]
[WhiteElo "2754"]
[BlackElo "2855"]
[Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"]
[PlyCount "114"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 e6 4. O-O Nge7 5. Re1 b6 {Carlsen goes for fast
development.} ({Korobov chose instead to challenge the white bishop at once
with} 5... a6 6. Bf1 Ng6 7. c3 Be7 8. d4 cxd4 9. cxd4 d5 10. e5 O-O 11. Nc3 f6
12. exf6 Bxf6 13. Be3 Bd7 14. Bd3 Rc8 {with a weird French in Giri,A (2776)
-Korobov,A (2683) Zagreb 2021}) 6. d4 $146 {An obvious novelty.} ({An email
game went} 6. c3 a6 7. Ba4 b5 8. Bc2 Bb7 9. d4 cxd4 10. cxd4 Ng6 11. Nc3 Na5
12. g3 Rc8 13. h4 {Nemchenko,V (2470)-Babic,D (2408) ICCF email 2014}) 6...
cxd4 {This is needed.} ({As} 6... a6 7. Bxc6 Nxc6 8. d5 $1 {is strong for
White.}) 7. Nxd4 Bb7 {Also an accurate move. Black postpones the typical
Taimanov trade.} ({With both knights standing on each other's road Black wants
to get rid of them as a rule with} 7... Nxd4 8. Qxd4 Nc6 {However here White
can pressurize thanks to} 9. Bxc6 dxc6 10. Qc3 $1) 8. Nc3 a6 9. Bf1 Nxd4 {
Now he can.} 10. Qxd4 Nc6 11. Qe3 Bc5 (11... Qc7 {is perhaps a tad more
accurate.}) 12. Qg3 O-O 13. e5 {Firouzja takes the f6- square away from the
black queen, while opening the road for his knight.} ({Since} 13. Bh6 {is met
with} Qf6) ({There was an idea to capitalize on Black's last move with} 13. Na4
$5 {When} Bd4 14. Be3 Bxe3 15. Qxe3 b5 16. Nc5 {promises White better chances
thanks to his dark-squared control.}) 13... f5 $1 {The white knight should not
be allowed to e4 for free.} 14. exf6 Rxf6 15. Bg5 {Forcing matters.} ({Black
does not experience any problems in case of} 15. Ne4 Rg6 16. Bg5 Be7 17. Bxe7
Nxe7) 15... Rxf2 $1 {Everything else loses.} ({For example} 15... Bxf2+ 16.
Qxf2 Rxf2 17. Bxd8 Rxf1+ $1 18. Rxf1 Rxd8) 16. Bxd8 Rf3+ 17. Kh1 Rxg3 18. Bxb6
{Very natural, winning a pawn. And a mistake $1} ({After} 18. hxg3 Rxd8 19. Ne4
Be7 20. Rad1 {Black has decent compensation for the exchange but this was the
way to play it.}) 18... Bxb6 19. hxg3 Bf2 ({The drawback of the pawn grabbing
would have been revealed by the move} 19... Rf8 $1 {[%cal Rf8f1] Unequivocally
aiming at the h-file. Then} 20. Re4 ({Mate is not a joke as the line} 20. Rad1
Rf6 21. Re4 g5 $1 {confirms.}) 20... Nd4 {[%cal Gd4c2,Gd4f5]} 21. Rf4 Nf5 $1 {
Brings another attacker in, and Black is clearly on top} 22. Kh2 Rf6 {[%cal
Rf6h6]}) 20. Re2 (20. Re4 $1 {[%cal Re4g4] was more accurate on the account of
the above-mentioned threat.}) 20... Bxg3 ({This was the last moment for} 20...
Rf8 $1 {[%cal Rf8f1] True, this time White has} 21. Rd1 {[%cal Rd1d7]} Rf6 {
[%cal Rf6h6]} 22. Rxf2 $1 Rxf2 23. Ne4 Rxc2 24. Rxd7 Rxb2 25. Nc5 Na5 $11 {
which should be likely a draw.}) 21. Ne4 {Now Firouzja consolidates and his
extra exchange matters.} Be5 22. Nc5 Bc8 23. c3 d6 24. Ne4 ({Also interesting
was the pressure against the black pawns with} 24. Nd3 Bf6 25. Nf4 Kf7) 24...
Kf7 25. Rd1 {[%cal Re4d6,Rd1d6,Ge5d6]} ({Here too, a sudden retreat} 25. Nd2 $1
d5 26. Nf3 Bf4 27. c4 $1 {would have successfully pressurized the black center.
}) 25... Ke7 26. g3 Rb8 27. Bg2 d5 {That is questionable. Firouzja wants to
see these pawns fixed without a doubt.} (27... Nd8 $5 {followed by Nd8-f7
looked more in the spirit of the position.}) 28. Nc5 {[%csl Ge6][%cal Rc5e6]}
Kd6 29. b4 {Putting pressure on the world champion.} a5 30. a3 {[%cal Ra5b4,
Rc6b4,Rb8b4,Ga3b4,Gc3b4]} axb4 31. axb4 Ra8 {[%csl Ga3,Ga7][%cal Ra8a3,Ra3c3]}
32. Ne4+ Kc7 33. b5 dxe4 {Most likely a blunder.} ({Carlsen had better chances
surviving with} 33... Nd8 $5 34. Ng5 Bxg3 35. c4 Kb6 $5 ({Or} 35... Ra3 $5))
34. Rxe4 $1 {This might have been missed by the world champion.} ({He probably
expected something along the lines of} 34. bxc6 Bxg3 35. Rf1 g5 36. Rf7+ Kd6 $1
) 34... Ra3 35. Rc4 Rxc3 36. Rxc3 Bxc3 37. Rc1 $1 {Not even allowing the
bishop pair to his mighty opponent $1} ({Strong enough seemed} 37. Bxc6 $5 Bf6
38. Kg2 Kb6 39. Kf3 e5 40. Ke4 {when the chances of a win for White and a draw
seem about equal.}) 37... Na7 {Best.} ({Carlsen quickly figured out that his
king will be in a mating cage after} 37... Bf6 38. Rxc6+ Kb8 39. b6) 38. Rxc3+
Kb6 39. Bc6 ({Strong was the immediate infiltration with} 39. Rf3 $1 {[%cal
Rf3f7]} Nxb5 40. Rf7 {when White should be able to convert.}) 39... e5 {
It is Carlsen's turn to miss a resource.} ({He could have saved himself a lot
of trouble with} 39... Nxb5 $1 40. Bxb5 Bb7+ {This in-between check is the key
$1} 41. Kh2 Kxb5 {and the draw is inevitable.}) 40. Kg1 Bf5 41. Be8 g6 42. Kf2
{Now after another consolidation Firouzja is winning.} h5 43. Ra3 $1 {The
invaders are coming.} g5 (43... Nxb5 {is of course never possible due to} 44.
Rb3) 44. Ra6+ Kb7 45. Rf6 Be4 46. Re6 h4 47. g4 $1 {Excellent technique $1
White wants to win both the enemy pawns.} ({After} 47. gxh4 gxh4 48. Rxe5 Bh1 {
Black can at least hope.}) 47... Nc8 48. Rxe5 Nd6 49. Bd7 {Up to here Firouzja
did a great job converting, but just a step away from the win starts missing
the decisive continuations.} ({There were two convincing wins} 49. Bc6+ $1 Bxc6
50. bxc6+ Kxc6 51. Kg2 {picks up both the black pawns.}) ({And the other is
equally good:} 49. Re6 $1 Kc7 50. b6+) 49... Kc7 50. Be6 ({Here and on the
next move the maneuver} 50. Bf5 $1 Bb7 51. Bd3 {would have still won for White.
}) 50... Bb7 51. Ke3 {The last wrong step, made with just seconds on the clock.
Now Carlsen escapes.} (51. Bf5 $1) 51... h3 52. Rxg5 ({Firouzja likely missed
that in the line} 52. Bd5 {Black does not need to go for} Bxd5 ({Neither will
he try} 52... h2 53. Re7+ $1 Kd8 54. Rxb7 {when White is again winning.}) ({
But he would rather save himself thanks to the pretty} 52... Nc4+ $3 53. Bxc4
h2 $11) 53. Rxd5 h2 54. Rd1) 52... h2 53. Rh5 h1=Q {And the draw became
inevitable.} 54. Rxh1 Bxh1 55. g5 Be4 56. Kd4 Bh7 57. Ke5 Ne4 1/2-1/2
[Event "Stavanger NOR"]
[Site "Stavanger NOR"]
[Date "2021.09.07"]
[Round "1.1"]
[White "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Black "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "B30"]
[WhiteElo "2754"]
[BlackElo "2855"]
[Annotator "Shahid"]
[PlyCount "114"]
[EventDate "2021.09.07"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 e6 4. O-O Nge7 5. Re1 b6 6. d4 cxd4 7. Nxd4 Bb7 8.
Nc3 a6 9. Bf1 Nxd4 10. Qxd4 Nc6 11. Qe3 Bc5 12. Qg3 O-O 13. e5 (13. Na4) 13...
f5 14. exf6 Rxf6 15. Bg5 Rxf2 16. Bxd8 Rf3+ 17. Kh1 Rxg3 18. Bxb6 (18. hxg3
Rxd8) 18... Bxb6 19. hxg3 Bf2 (19... Rf8 20. Re4 Nd4 21. Bd3 (21. Rf4 Nf5 22.
Kh2 Rf6 $19) 21... Bxe4 22. Nxe4 Rf5) 20. Re2 Bxg3 21. Ne4 Be5 22. Nc5 Bc8 23.
c3 d6 24. Ne4 Kf7 25. Rd1 Ke7 26. g3 Rb8 27. Bg2 d5 28. Nc5 Kd6 29. b4 a5 30.
a3 axb4 31. axb4 Ra8 32. Ne4+ Kc7 33. b5 dxe4 $4 (33... Nd8) 34. Rxe4 Ra3 35.
Rc4 Rxc3 36. Rxc3 Bxc3 37. Rc1 (37. Bxc6) 37... Na7 38. Rxc3+ Kb6 39. Bc6 e5 (
39... Nxb5 40. Bxb5 Bb7+) 40. Kg1 Bf5 41. Be8 g6 42. Kf2 h5 43. Ra3 g5 44. Ra6+
Kb7 45. Rf6 Be4 46. Re6 h4 47. g4 Nc8 48. Rxe5 Nd6 49. Bd7 Kc7 50. Be6 Bb7 51.
Ke3 $4 (51. Bf5) 51... h3 52. Rxg5 h2 53. Rh5 h1=Q 54. Rxh1 Bxh1 55. g5 Be4 56.
Kd4 Bh7 57. Ke5 Ne4 1/2-1/2
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.08"]
[Round "2.2"]
[White "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Black "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C34"]
[WhiteElo "2792"]
[BlackElo "2754"]
[Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"]
[PlyCount "49"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. e4 e5 2. f4 {As expected, the armaggedon part is the most exciting in
Stavanger. And what can be a better occasion than that to demonstrate and
advertise your recent online course $1 This is what is Nepomniachtchi doing
and Firouzja is either completely unprepared for what comes next, or had mixed
up something in his preparation.} exf4 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. e5 Nh5 5. d4 d6 6. Qe2 {
This move is the reason to choose the Gambit of the Kings.} ({Apparently
Nepomniachtchi is not eager to repeat this game:} 6. Bc4 Nc6 7. d5 Nxe5 8. Nxe5
Qh4+ 9. Kf1 dxe5 10. Bb5+ Kd8 11. Qe1 Ng3+ {0-1 McShane,L (2674)-Indjic,A
(2607) Online 2021}) 6... dxe5 7. Nxe5 Qh4+ 8. g3 $1 {Not slowing down at all.
It is better to sacrifice material than to slow down the attack.} Nxg3 9. hxg3
Qxh1 10. Bxf4 {Up to here both players are following Nepomniachtchi's course.}
Be6 $146 {This move is a novelty, and... a losing mistake $1} ({White also did
great in an email game after:} 10... Bb4+ 11. Nd2 Bxd2+ 12. Bxd2 O-O 13. O-O-O
Qd5 14. Bb4 {Marchisotti,M (2274) -Wettering,G (1972) ICCF email 2006}) ({
\"One needs to know\"} 10... Bd6 $3 11. Ng6+ (11. Nc3 {is perhaps what White
was planning anyway.}) 11... Be6 12. Nxh8 {\"and this is much worse for White.
\" (Nepomniachtchi) But he added that he was not planning to take the rook.})
11. Nc3 $1 {White's motto is initiative and initiative $1 The threat of d4-d5
is unstoppable.} g5 $5 {A creative way to kick his opponent from the right
plan.} ({Even} 11... c6 {would not slow White down:} 12. d5 $1 cxd5 13. Qb5+
Nd7 14. Nxd7 Bxd7 15. Qxb7 Rd8 16. O-O-O {and White wins.}) ({Whereas} 11...
Be7 12. O-O-O O-O {saves the king but leaves her Majesty exposed:} 13. Bg2 Qh2
14. Rh1) 12. d5 $1 {Just following the grand scheme of exposing the king and
mating it.} (12. Bxg5 Bh6 {is not what Black was hoping.}) 12... gxf4 13. dxe6
Bd6 ({After} 13... fxe6 {the most precise is} 14. Qc4 Qh6 15. Qxc7 Qg7 16. Bb5+
{White always attacks with threats.}) ({The most stubborn defense was} 13...
Bh6 {At least depriving the white king from castling, although here too Black
should not survive after} 14. exf7+ Kf8 15. Rd1 Nc6 16. Rd7) 14. O-O-O $1 (14.
Nxf7 {would have won as well, but the move in the game is far more aesthetic.})
14... Qh6 ({Still, it made sense for Firouzja to try and secure his king with}
14... fxe6 {Then White at least had to find the brilliant} 15. Ng4 $3 O-O ({
After} 15... Kf7 {Many move win, like} 16. Bg2 (16. Re1 $1) (16. Ne4 $1) 16...
Qh5 17. Rh1 Qg5 18. Ne4 Qg7 19. Nh6+) 16. Bg2 {and wins.}) 15. Qb5+ {Suddenly
the danger comes from the queenside.} Nc6 16. Nxf7 Qxe6 17. Bc4 $1 {Once again
beautiful and strong $1 The game is a model of the power of the development.} (
{It all gets very messy if White allows his opponent a chance to castle:} 17.
Nxh8 O-O-O) 17... Qe3+ (17... Qxf7 18. Bxf7+ Kxf7 19. Qf5+ {is hopeless for
Black of course.}) 18. Kb1 Qc5 ({The rook cannot escape due to} 18... Rf8 19.
Nxd6+ cxd6 20. Qxb7) ({Neither does the desperate try} 18... O-O 19. Qg5#) 19.
Nxd6+ cxd6 20. Qxb7 Qxc4 (20... Rd8 21. Qf7#) 21. Qxa8+ Nd8 {Nepomniachtchi
quickly finishes the exposed black king:} 22. Re1+ Kf7 23. Qxa7+ Kg6 24. gxf4
Qc5 25. Rg1+ {A brilliant game in the spirit of the old masters $1} 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.08"]
[Round "2.2"]
[White "Karjakin, Sergey"]
[Black "Rapport, Richard"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "B01"]
[WhiteElo "2758"]
[BlackElo "2760"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "134"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. e4 d5 (1... c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Bg5 e6 7. f4
Be7 8. Qf3 Nbd7 9. O-O-O Qc7 10. Bd3 b5 11. Bxf6 Nxf6 12. Rhe1 Bb7 13. Kb1 Rc8
14. g4 Nd7 15. g5 Nb6 16. f5 e5 17. f6 gxf6 18. gxf6 Bf8 19. Nd5 Nxd5 20. exd5
Kd8 21. Nc6+ Bxc6 22. dxc6 Qxc6 23. Be4 Qb6 24. Qh5 Kc7 25. Bf5 Rd8 26. Qxf7+
Kb8 27. Qe6 Qc7 28. Re3 Bh6 29. Rc3 Qb7 30. f7 Bg7 31. Rcd3 Bf8 32. Qxe5 dxe5
33. Rxd8+ Ka7 34. R1d7 h5 35. Rxb7+ Kxb7 36. c3 Kc7 37. Ra8 Kd6 38. Rxa6+ Ke7
39. Re6+ Kxf7 40. Rxe5 b4 41. cxb4 Bxb4 42. h3 Kf6 43. Rb5 Bd6 44. Be4 Re8 45.
Rf5+ Kg7 46. Bf3 Re1+ 47. Kc2 Rf1 48. Rd5 Rf2+ 49. Rd2 Rxd2+ 50. Kxd2 h4 51.
Kd3 Kf6 52. Kc4 Ke7 53. Kb5 $2 {With this move White threw away the win.} (53.
b4 $1) 53... Kd7 $2 ({Executing the drawing idea one move too late.} 53... Bf4
$1 {draws as in the game.}) 54. a4 $2 (54. b4 $1) 54... Kc7 55. b4 Kb8 56. a5
Ka7 57. Kc4 Bg3 $1 58. Kb3 Be1 $1 {Attacking the pawns from the rear is an
important technique in such endings.} 59. Ka4 Bd2 60. Bh5 Be1 61. b5 Bf2 62.
Be2 Be3 63. Kb3 Bd2 64. b6+ Kb7 65. Ka4 Kc6 66. Bb5+ Kc5 67. Be8 Be1 {½-½
Walther,E-Fischer,R Zuerich 1959}) 2. exd5 Qxd5 3. Nc3 Qa5 4. d4 Nf6 5. Nf3 Bf5
6. Bc4 e6 7. Bd2 Bb4 8. a3 Bxc3 9. Bxc3 Qb6 10. Ne5 (10. O-O O-O 11. b3 Nc6 12.
Ne5 Rad8 13. Nxc6 Qxc6 14. Bb2 b5 15. Bd3 Bxd3 16. Qxd3 Nd5 {Svidler,P (2714)
-Rapport,R (2763) Saint Louis 2021}) 10... Nc6 11. O-O O-O 12. Bb3 Nxe5 $146 (
12... Rad8 {as suggested by Judit Polgar (and played before) made more sense.
Rapport was a bit worried about} 13. Nc4 {but then} Qa6 {is fine.}) 13. dxe5
Rfd8 14. exf6 $1 {The best practical chance and in the situation \"the only
move\" (Rapport).} Rxd1 15. Raxd1 g5 16. Rd7 h5 17. Rfd1 Rf8 18. Re7 Kh7 19.
Bc4 Kg6 20. Rdd7 Qc6 $1 {Activating the queen is important.} 21. Rxc7 Qe4 22.
Bf1 h4 23. h3 b6 24. Rxa7 g4 25. Red7 $6 (25. Bd3) 25... gxh3 26. Rd4 hxg2 $2 (
26... Qxc2 27. Rxh4 Rd8 {was actually winning for Black but Rapport's choice
made sense as he only needed a draw.}) 27. Rxe4 gxf1=R+ 28. Kxf1 Bxe4 29. Ra4
Kf5 30. f3 Bxc2 31. Rxh4 e5 32. Rh5+ Kxf6 33. Rxe5 Kg6 34. Kf2 Rd8 35. Rb5 Rd6
36. Be5 Bd3 37. Bxd6 (37. Rb3 Bc4 38. Rb4) 37... Bxb5 38. Bc7 Kf5 39. Ke3 Ke6
40. Bxb6 Kd5 41. b3 Bd7 42. Kd3 Bh3 43. a4 Bg2 44. f4 f5 45. Kc3 Bf3 46. Bc7
Bd1 {The same technique as Fischer employed (see the start of the game).} 47.
Be5 Kc5 48. Kb2 Kd5 49. Kc3 Kc5 50. Bd4+ Kc6 51. Kc4 Bc2 52. Be3 Bd1 53. Kb4
Bc2 54. Ka3 Kd5 55. Bf2 Bd1 56. b4 Kc4 57. b5 Bc2 58. Be1 Bd1 59. Bb4 Bc2 60.
Bd6 Bd1 61. Bc7 Bc2 62. b6 Be4 63. a5 Kb5 64. Kb3 Bb7 65. Kc3 Kxa5 66. Kd4 Ka6
67. Ke5 Be4 1/2-1/2
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.08"]
[Round "2.2"]
[White "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Black "Tari, Aryan"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C54"]
[WhiteElo "2855"]
[BlackElo "2642"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "93"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. d3 Bc5 5. c3 d6 6. Nbd2 a5 7. Nf1 Be6 8. Bb5
O-O 9. Ng3 ({Deviating from} 9. Bg5 {as played in the classical game.}) 9...
Ne7 10. d4 exd4 11. cxd4 Bb4+ 12. Kf1 c6 13. Bd3 a4 14. a3 Bb3 $6 (14... Ba5
15. Qxa4 c5 16. d5 Bd7 17. Qd1 b5 {would be a better version.}) 15. Bc2 Bxc2
16. Qxc2 Ba5 17. Qxa4 d5 18. e5 Ne4 19. Qc2 {Now Black is struggling for
compensation.} f5 20. Ne2 f4 21. Bxf4 Ng6 22. Be3 Nh4 23. Ng3 Nxf3 24. gxf3 Ng5
25. f4 Nf3 26. h4 c5 27. Kg2 Nxd4 28. Bxd4 cxd4 29. f5 Qe8 30. b4 Bb6 31. Rhe1
Rc8 32. Qb3 Rc4 33. Qf3 Qc6 34. f6 Qe6 35. Nf5 g6 36. Ne7+ Kh8 37. Nxd5 d3 38.
Nxb6 Rg4+ 39. Kf1 d2 40. Re3 Rd4 41. Rd1 Qxb6 42. e6 Qb5+ 43. Re2 Rd3 44. e7
Re8 45. Qe4 Qd7 46. f7 Qh3+ 47. Kg1 1-0
[Event "Norway Chess"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.09"]
[Round "3.1"]
[White "Rapport, Richard"]
[Black "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "A08"]
[WhiteElo "2760"]
[BlackElo "2855"]
[PlyCount "83"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Hungary"]
[BlackTeam "Norway"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "HUN"]
[BlackTeamCountry "NOR"]
1. g3 d5 2. Nf3 c5 3. Bg2 Nc6 4. O-O e5 5. d3 Be7 6. Na3 Be6 7. e4 d4 8. Nc4
Qc7 9. Ng5 Bxg5 10. Bxg5 f6 11. Bd2 h5 12. f4 h4 13. Qe1 hxg3 14. Qxg3 O-O-O
15. b3 Nh6 16. fxe5 Nxe5 17. Nxe5 fxe5 18. c3 Ng4 19. cxd4 exd4 20. Bf4 Qe7 21.
Rac1 g5 $2 22. Rxc5+ $1 Qxc5 23. Rc1 Qxc1+ 24. Bxc1 Rxh2 25. Bxg5 $6 ({White
should be winning after} 25. Bf3 Rdh8 26. Qd6 $1 Bd7 27. Bxg5) 25... Rg8 26.
Qd6 Rxg5 27. Qxe6+ Kd8 28. Qd6+ Ke8 29. Bf3 $6 (29. Qb8+) 29... Ne5+ $1 {
Drawing instantly.} 30. Kf1 Nxf3 31. Qe6+ Kd8 32. Qf6+ Ke8 33. Qxf3 Rc5 34. Kg1
Rxa2 35. Qf4 Rcc2 36. Qb8+ Ke7 37. Qe5+ Kf7 38. Qd5+ Kg6 39. Qf5+ Kg7 40. Qg5+
Kh7 41. Qh5+ Kg7 42. Qg5+ 1/2-1/2
[Event "Chess.com"]
[Site "Chess.com"]
[Date "2021.09.09"]
[Round "3.2"]
[White "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Black "Karjakin, Sergey"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "A01"]
[WhiteElo "2754"]
[BlackElo "2758"]
[Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"]
[PlyCount "124"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. b3 {A popular choice for top blitz games.} e5 2. Bb2 Nc6 3. c4 Nf6 4. Nf3 e4
5. Nd4 Nxd4 {A straightforward and excellent continuation. Karjakin speeds up
his development.} ({Svidler chose instead} 5... Bc5 6. Nf5 O-O 7. e3 d5 8. cxd5
Nb4 9. Ng3 Nbxd5 10. Nc3 Re8 11. Nxd5 Nxd5 12. Bc4 c6 {and equalized in the
recent game Rapport,R (2763)-Svidler,P (2714) Saint Louis 2021}) 6. Bxd4 b6 7.
g3 Bb7 8. Bg2 Bc5 $146 {Once more a very straightforward approach by the
Russian GM.} (8... Be7 9. O-O O-O 10. Nc3 c5 11. Be3 d5 12. cxd5 Nxd5 13. Nxe4
f5 14. Nc3 Nxe3 15. dxe3 Bxg2 16. Kxg2 Bf6 17. Rc1 {Fry,P (1752)-Palma,M (1529)
Cammeray 2010}) 9. Bb2 {And this is too much. Firouzja is certainly playing
with fire, in order to keep more pieces on board and play for the win.} ({
White is a bit better after} 9. Bxc5 bxc5 10. Nc3 O-O 11. O-O Qe7 12. d3) 9...
h5 $1 {In the spirit of Spassky $1 White is lagging in development thus Black
can afford to play on the kingside.} 10. d4 ({As} 10. h4 {opens a nice square
for the black knight:} Ng4) 10... Bb4+ 11. Nc3 ({Black is better after} 11. Bc3
a5 $5 12. a3 Bd6) 11... h4 ({Also good was the immediate} 11... d5 $5 12. a3
Bxc3+ 13. Bxc3 h4) 12. e3 ({If White tries to block the d-pawn with} 12. d5 h3
13. Bf1 {he likely disliked the opening of the center with} c6 $1) 12... d5 13.
Qc2 ({Similar would have been} 13. a3 Bxc3+ 14. Bxc3 Bc8 $1) 13... Bc8 {
The correct idea, but a sloppy execution. The bishop has done its job on the
long diagonal and needs to search for new adventures.} ({However, the
preliminary} 13... h3 14. Bf1 {and then} Bc8 $1 {would have promised Black
more. His constant threat would be to manuever the bishop to f3 and then just
pick up the h2-pawn with the knight and promote.}) 14. h3 hxg3 15. fxg3 c6 16.
O-O-O Be6 17. Ne2 a5 {Karjakin keeps making the most obvious and logical moves.
A very wise approach in an armageddon $1} ({More interesting would have been}
17... dxc4 18. bxc4 b5 $5 19. Bxe4 O-O {but who needs these complications when
in need of a draw $2}) 18. Nf4 ({Perhaps} 18. a3 {was better, although Black
has nothing to complain about in the line} Be7 19. Nf4 a4 20. Nxe6 fxe6 21. b4
Qb8 $5) 18... a4 19. Kb1 axb3 20. Qxb3 $1 ({Since} 20. axb3 Qd7 {maneuvering
the queen to a7 is passive and gloomy for White.}) 20... Bd6 ({A stronger plan
was to trade the white queenside bishop with} 20... Qd6 $1 21. Nxe6 fxe6 22. g4
Ba3) 21. cxd5 cxd5 22. g4 {Firouzja achieved what he wanted; the position is
completely irrational.} ({If} 22. Nxe6 fxe6 23. Bf1 $5 O-O {Black consolidates.
} ({Or} 23... Bxg3 24. Rg1 Qd6 25. Rc1 {with compensation for the pawn.}))
22... O-O {Once more obvious, but this time imprecise.} ({Karjakin would have
controlled the kingside better with} 22... Bxf4 $1 23. exf4 O-O 24. f5 Bd7 25.
Rc1 Qb8 26. g5 Ba4 27. Qe3 Nh5 $1) 23. g5 Bxf4 24. gxf6 ({Certainly not} 24.
exf4 Nh5) 24... Bh6 25. fxg7 Kxg7 {And the initiative brings fruits as Black
blunders $1} ({Both} 25... Bxg7 $1) ({And even} 25... Re8 $1 {would have left
Karjakin in control.}) 26. Bxe4 $1 {Not waiting for a second invitation.} f5 {
After taking his breath, Karjakin proceeds as if nothing happened.} (26... dxe4
27. d5+ Kh7 28. dxe6 {would have been devastating for the second player.}) 27.
Rhg1+ Kh7 28. Bd3 {Black's problem is not only that he lost a pawn; this
bishop became a key attacker too.} Qd6 29. Rg2 ({The patient} 29. Bc1 $5 {
might have been even better.}) 29... Bxe3 $1 {If one is going to suffer, then
let that be for something.} 30. Re1 Bh6 31. Qd1 $1 {This maneuver is what
Firouzja was aiming for.} Bd7 ({Here the correct defense was} 31... Rf6 $1 32.
Qh5 Bf7 33. Qh4 Rg8 {with good chances to survive.}) 32. Qh5 Rf6 33. Reg1 {
With the threat of a check on g7 followed by the same rook moving to g6 with a
decisive pin. The game enters its most interesting part. It seems as
Karjakin's positon will collapse at any moment, but he somehow resists $1} Qf8
$1 {Not letting the intruder in.} 34. Bc1 Qb4+ $1 {An only defense again.} 35.
Bb2 ({As in the line} 35. Ka1 Qc3+ 36. Bb2 Qxd3 37. Rg6 {Black has} Qe3 $1 {
This is still quite an interesting position but White has nothing more than a
draw in the line} 38. Bc1 Qc3+ ({Or the more complicated} 38... Qxd4+ 39. Bb2
Rxa2+ $1 40. Kxa2 Qc4+ {also with perpetual check.}) 39. Bb2 Qe3) 35... Qf8 36.
a3 {Taking the b4 spot under control.} ({A study-like win would have been
achieved with} 36. Qh4 $3 {The queen steps back but defends the key d4-pawn.
Black has no way out, say} Re8 37. Bc1 Qb4+ 38. Ka1 Qc3+ 39. Bb2 {and wins.}) (
{Not as convincing is} 36. Ka1 $5 Be8 37. Qe2 Bg6 $1 {and Black somehow holds.}
) 36... Rc8 $1 {Stopping Bb2-c1 $1 again.} 37. Rg6 $3 {Then once more Karjakin
goes for an obvious continuation.} ({As in the line} 37. Bc1 Rxc1+ $1 38. Rxc1
Qxa3 {Black has enough counterplay.}) ({But} 37. Ka2 $5 {looked good for White
too.}) 37... Be8 {And gets} ({The most resilient would have been} 37... Rcc6 $1
38. Rxf6 Rxf6 39. Bc1 Qf7 40. Qh4 Rg6 {hoping for the best.}) 38. Rxf6 $1 Bxh5
39. Rxf5 $3 {In return $1 A complete shocker $1} Kh8 $1 {But Karjakin is not
considered one of the best defenders of our time for nothing $1} ({The meak}
39... Qxf5 40. Bxf5+ {loses on the spot.}) 40. Rxf8+ {Oh, what a pity $1} ({
The amazing combination would have been crowned with a couple of more stunners
} 40. Rxh5 $3 {The Rg1-g6 threat can be only stopped with} Rc6 {But then} 41.
Rxd5 $1 {and Black is helpless against the rook-d5-somewhere-and-then-pawn
push idea.}) 40... Rxf8 41. Re1 Rf3 {Firouzja got too little out of his huge
attack.} 42. Re6 Kg7 (42... Bd2 $1 {might have been even better.}) 43. Be2 Rxh3
44. Bxh5 Rxh5 45. Rxb6 Be3 46. a4 Rh4 47. a5 {Not it is an instant draw, as
White blundered his key pawn.} (47. Rb4 $1 {would be a chance still, although
Black likely survives after} Rh8 48. Kc2 Ra8) 47... Bxd4 48. Rb4 {A pin White
saw when playing on increment.} Rh1+ {But that was obviously missed. Now it is
a draw, but White keeps pushing till the end.} 49. Ka2 Bxb2 50. Kxb2 Kf6 51. a6
Rh8 52. Kb3 Ke5 53. Rb6 d4 54. a7 Ra8 55. Ra6 Kd5 56. Kb4 d3 57. Kb5 ({
Rejecting the draw in the line} 57. Kc3 Kc5 58. Kxd3 Kb5) 57... d2 58. Ra1 Kd4
59. Kb4 Kd3 ({Black could have even played for more} 59... Ke3 $1) 60. Ra3+ {
Now White even loses.} ({But the draw is equally a bad result for him in the
line} 60. Kb5 Rxa7 61. Rxa7 d1=Q 62. Rd7+) 60... Ke2 61. Ra2 Ke1 62. Ra1+ d1=Q
{Not Firouzja's Armageddon so far.} 0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.09"]
[Round "3.2"]
[White "Tari, Aryan"]
[Black "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B23"]
[WhiteElo "2642"]
[BlackElo "2792"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "62"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Norway"]
[BlackTeam "Russia"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "NOR"]
[BlackTeamCountry "RUS"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 d6 3. f4 g6 4. Nf3 Bg7 5. Bb5+ Bd7 6. Bc4 Nc6 7. d3 Na5 (7...
e6 8. O-O Nge7 9. f5 gxf5 10. Bf4 Ne5 11. Nxe5 dxe5 12. Bg5 f4 13. Qh5 Qc7 {
Najer,E (2654)-Chigaev,M (2643) Moscow 2021}) 8. Bd2 e6 9. Qe2 Ne7 10. e5 $146
(10. a3 O-O 11. Ba2 Nac6 12. Qf2 Qb6 13. O-O-O Qa6 14. e5 d5 15. Qxc5 b6 16.
Qf2 b5 {Kadric,D (2495)-Gabuzyan,H (2578) Golden Sands 2015}) 10... Nf5 11. Bb5
d5 $2 {Blundering White's 13th move.} ({After} 11... Bxb5 12. Nxb5 dxe5 {
Black is doing fine.}) 12. Bxd7+ Qxd7 13. Nxd5 $1 exd5 $6 (13... Qxd5) 14. Bxa5
Qb5 15. Bc3 d4 16. Bd2 ({As Nepomniachtchi pointed out, the intermediate move}
16. a4 Qb6 17. a5 {was strong here} Qb5 18. Bd2 {\"just improving his pawn
structure.\"}) 16... Qxb2 17. O-O O-O 18. Qe4 (18. a4 $5 Qxc2 19. Rfc1 Qb3 20.
Rxc5) 18... b6 19. g4 Ne3 20. Bxe3 dxe3 21. Rae1 Qxc2 22. f5 Rfe8 23. e6 Qxa2
24. Rxe3 $2 ({Killing was} 24. Ng5 $1 fxe6 25. f6 Bxf6 26. Rxf6 {because} Qd5 {
allows} 27. Rxg6+) 24... fxe6 25. fxg6 h6 26. g5 Qd5 27. Qh4 Qf5 28. Qh5 $6 ({
Better was} 28. gxh6 Qxg6+ 29. Kh1 Qxh6 30. Qe4 {but Black should be able to
hold this.}) 28... Rf8 29. Re4 Rf6 $5 {Winning in style.} 30. Rg4 Rxg6 31. Nh4
Qxg4+ 0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.10"]
[Round "4.2"]
[White "Rapport, Richard"]
[Black "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "D90"]
[WhiteElo "2760"]
[BlackElo "2754"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "109"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Hungary"]
[BlackTeam "France"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "HUN"]
[BlackTeamCountry "FRA"]
1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 d5 4. Nf3 Bg7 5. cxd5 Nxd5 6. Bd2 {A variation on
the well-known 5.Bd2 line of the Exchange Grunfeld.} O-O ({The immediate} 6...
c5 7. Rc1 Nxc3 8. Bxc3 cxd4 9. Nxd4 O-O 10. e3 Bd7 {followed by 11...Nc6 has
been recommended by Svidler.}) 7. Rc1 Nxc3 8. Bxc3 Nd7 9. e3 b6 10. Be2 Bb7 ({
Rapport suggested} 10... a5 {not to allow b2-b4.}) 11. b4 Nf6 12. O-O Ne4 13.
Ba1 Qd6 ({Rapport expected something more quick such as} 13... c5 $5) ({or}
13... Bd5 {and 14...c6.}) 14. Ne5 Rfc8 (14... Qxb4 {looks risky after} 15. Rxc7
{although} Bd5 16. Nc6 Bxc6 17. Rxc6 Rac8 {might actually be OK.}) 15. Qa4 (15.
f3 $5) 15... a6 ({Firouzja must have seen a problem with the most logical move
} 15... c5 {e.g.} 16. Bc4 ({Rapport checked} 16. dxc5 bxc5 17. Rfd1 Qe6 18. Bg4
(18. Bc4 Qf5) 18... f5 19. Be2 cxb4 20. Rxc8+ Rxc8 {but couldn't make} 21. Bc4
Rxc4 22. Qe8+ Bf8 {work.}) 16... e6 17. dxc5 bxc5 18. Rfd1 Qe7 {but this is
playable because} 19. Rd7 {can be met with} Qe8 {and now according to the
engine the only move to keep equality( $1) for White is} 20. Qd1) 16. Nc6 (16.
Rfd1 $5) 16... b5 $6 ({First} 16... e6 $5 {might have been more accurate.}) ({
Rapport looked at} 16... Nd2 17. Rfd1 b5 18. Qc2 Nc4 {but} 19. Bxc4 bxc4 20.
Na5 $1 {is very strong.}) 17. Qc2 Bxc6 18. Qxc6 Qxc6 19. Rxc6 a5 20. Bd3 (20.
a4 axb4 21. Bxb5 Nd6) 20... Nf6 21. Bxb5 axb4 22. Bc4 (22. Ba6 $5 {Rapport})
22... Ne4 23. Rc1 ({Rapport mentioned} 23. Bd5 Nd2 24. Rd1 e6 ({he didn't like
} 24... Ra5) 25. Rxe6 {but that's actually not good because of} c6 $1) 23...
Nd2 24. Ba6 Rcb8 25. R1c2 Rb6 $5 (25... b3 $2 26. Rxd2 bxa2 27. Rd1 Rb1 28. Rf1
) ({Rapport thought} 25... Ne4 {is very nice for White but it might not be so
clear.}) 26. Rxb6 cxb6 27. Bb7 Ra7 28. Bc6 Nb1 29. Bd5 Nc3 30. Bb3 Rc7 ({
Rapport thought this was the critical move and Black should play} 30... e5 $1
31. Bxc3 (31. dxe5 $6 Rd7 $1) 31... bxc3 32. Rxc3 exd4 33. Rc8+ Bf8 34. exd4 {
and although this position is unpleasant for Black, Rapport thought this was
closer to a draw than to a win.}) 31. f4 e6 32. g4 Bf6 $6 (32... h6 33. h4 h5
34. g5 {is probably a better version.}) 33. g5 Be7 34. Kg2 Kg7 35. Kf3 h6 36.
h4 Rc8 37. Bb2 b5 38. Rc1 Bd8 39. a3 Ba5 40. axb4 Bxb4 41. e4 Ba5 42. d5 exd5
43. exd5 hxg5 44. hxg5 b4 45. d6 Rd8 46. Rd1 ({Rapport suggested} 46. Re1 Rxd6
47. Re7 {and here} Kf8 $1 (47... Rd3+ 48. Kg4 {only helps White}) 48. Rxf7+ Ke8
{is better for White but perhaps not winning.}) 46... Bb6 47. d7 Kf8 48. Rd6
Ba7 49. Bc4 Bc5 50. Rc6 Bd4 51. Rc8 Ke7 $2 {With the time on his clock ticking
away, Firouzja collapses.} (51... Bb6 {was still a fight.}) 52. Bxf7 Kxd7 53.
Rc4 Ke7 54. Bxg6 Rd6 55. Rxb4 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.10"]
[Round "4.2"]
[White "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Black "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "D78"]
[WhiteElo "2855"]
[BlackElo "2792"]
[Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"]
[PlyCount "81"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. Nf3 {One of two long awaited pre-WCC clashes took place today and two major
openings were discussed. The Berlin was Nepomniachtchi's choice against 1.
e2-e4 and in this game the world champion tested his semi-closed preparation.}
Nf6 2. g3 d5 3. Bg2 g6 4. O-O Bg7 5. c4 c6 6. b3 Ne4 7. d4 {From the Reti into
the Grunfeld, another opening we will likely witness in Dubai.} O-O 8. Bb2 a5 {
A typical relieving maneuver.} 9. Nc3 Bf5 10. e3 Nxc3 11. Bxc3 Be4 {It seems
as Black is very close to the equality but some reefs still need to be avoided.
} 12. Qe2 a4 (12... Nd7 $6 13. cxd5 $1 cxd5 14. Qb5 Qc7 15. Rfc1 {was nice for
White in the very recent game Carlsen,M (2847)-Duda,J (2738) Online 2021}) 13.
Rfc1 axb3 ({Black was suffering after} 13... Nd7 14. Bh3 $1 Bxf3 15. Qxf3 e6
16. Qe2 axb3 17. axb3 Rxa1 18. Rxa1 Qb6 19. Qc2 Qc7 20. Ra7 {in the recent
game Oparin,G (2655)-Mamedov,R (2654) Online 2021}) 14. axb3 Rxa1 15. Rxa1 Qb6
$5 $146 {Both sides are putting as much pressure on the queenside as they can.
Carlsen called this a \"strange\" move.} ({Curiously, in an earlier game Black
took actions on the opposite wing and held the balance after} 15... c5 $1 {
Carlsen remarked about this: \"I think I've been tricked like this before in
some game $1\"'} 16. Qb2 cxd4 17. Bxd4 Bxd4 18. exd4 Nc6 19. c5 e6 20. Nd2 Bxg2
21. Kxg2 Qf6 22. Nf3 g5 23. h3 h5 24. Qc3 Qf5 25. Re1 Ra8 {1/2-1/2 Nikolic,P
(2648)-Kempinski,R (2586) Antalya 2004}) 16. b4 Nd7 {This obvious move seems
to be the reason for Nepomniachtchi's problems.} ({Stronger was to separate
the white pawn chain with} 16... dxc4 $1 17. Qxc4 {followed by either} Na6 ({Or
} 17... Nd7 {and in both cases the knight will march forward the d5 outpost.}))
17. c5 $1 {Carlsen would miss a chance to grind anyone.} Qc7 18. Ra7 Qb8 {
It seems as Nepomniachtchi was following a relatively forcing line where he
believed he would equalize.} ({The passive defense} 18... Rb8 {can be met with
either} 19. Qa2 ({Or even better, play à la Oparin:} 19. Bh3 $5 Bxf3 20. Qxf3
e6 21. Qd1 {with a pleasant edge for Black.}) 19... Qc8 20. Nd2) 19. Qa2 Bxf3 {
In order to clear the e5-square.} ({The defense} 19... Bd3 20. Bh3 e6 {was the
better choice in hindsight, as the constant threat of Bd3-a6 would force White
to retreat. True, Carlsen is still better in the line but Black's resources
are not exhausted.}) (19... e5 {Peter,Doggers} 20. Nxe5 Nxe5 21. Bxe4 dxe4 22.
dxe5 Rd8 23. b5 {is another overwhelming advantage.}) 20. Bxf3 e5 21. b5 {
Carlsen is not afraid of ghosts.} ({Also interesting was} 21. Qa5 $5 exd4 22.
Bxd4 Bxd4 23. exd4 Nf6 {with an edge for White.}) 21... e4 {Based on an
oversight.} ({Black had to try} 21... exd4 22. Bxd4 Bxd4 ({or} 22... Ne5 23.
Bg2 Nc4) 23. exd4 Nf6 {although White is clearly better here too.}) 22. Be2
Nxc5 {This trick is what Nepomniachtchi was hoping for, but it backfires.} ({
True, the passive defense} 22... Qc8 {would no longer help after} 23. bxc6 bxc6
({Or} 23... Qxc6 24. Qb3) 24. Ba5 {and Black's queenside crumbles.}) 23. Bb4 $1
{Not sure what Nepomniachtchi missed, but now he is completely lost.} Na6 24.
Bxf8 Bxf8 25. Rxb7 $1 {Rude and effective $1} ({There was also the cute win}
25. b6 $1 Nb4 26. Rxb7 $1 Qxb7 27. Qa7 {and the pawn is unstoppable.}) 25...
Qxb7 26. Qxa6 Qb8 ({No time for} 26... Qxa6 27. bxa6) 27. Qxc6 Qd6 28. Qxd6 {
Carlsen quickly liquidates into an endgame which he knows he is winning. An
elegant effectiveness.} ({A tad more accurate seemed} 28. Qb7 $1 Be7 29. Bd1 $1
Bd8 30. Bb3) 28... Bxd6 29. Bd1 Bc7 30. Bb3 Kg7 31. Bxd5 f5 32. g4 $1 {Carlsen
creates one more weakness.} Kf6 ({The most resilient} 32... h5 {would not have
saved Black neither.}) 33. h4 h6 34. Kg2 Bd8 35. h5 $1 {The point behind
White's play, the e4 pawn falls.} fxg4 36. hxg6 Kxg6 37. Bxe4+ Kg5 38. f4+ Kf6
({Or} 38... gxf3+ 39. Kxf3 {and the passers move with ease.}) 39. Kg3 h5 40.
Kh4 Ba5 41. b6 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.10"]
[Round "4.3"]
[White "Tari, Aryan"]
[Black "Karjakin, Sergey"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "C65"]
[WhiteElo "2642"]
[BlackElo "2758"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "110"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Norway"]
[BlackTeam "Russia"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "NOR"]
[BlackTeamCountry "RUS"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. d3 Bc5 5. Bg5 Be7 $146 ({Safer than} 5... Ne7
6. Bxf6 gxf6 7. d4 exd4 8. O-O c6 9. Bc4 O-O 10. Nxd4 d6 11. Nc3 f5 12. Qd2 Kh8
13. Rad1 Bb6 14. Nf3 fxe4 15. Nxe4 Nf5 16. g4 Ng7 17. Qh6 Bxg4 18. Nfg5 Bf5 19.
Nxd6 {1-0 Van Foreest,J (2688)-So,W (2772) chess24.com INT 2021}) 6. O-O d6 7.
d4 O-O 8. Bxc6 bxc6 9. Nc3 h6 10. Be3 (10. Bxf6 $5 Bxf6 11. dxe5 dxe5 12. Na4)
10... exd4 11. Nxd4 Bd7 12. h3 c5 13. Nde2 Bc6 14. Ng3 Re8 15. Qf3 Bf8 16. Rad1
Qe7 17. Nf5 $6 Qe5 18. Nd5 $6 Nxd5 19. exd5 Bd7 {Simply winning a tempo and
thus the b2-pawn.} 20. Ng3 Qxb2 21. Nh5 Qxc2 22. Bxh6 {Karjakin had seen that
he could allow this due to...} Qf5 $1 {...and Black is still a pawn up.} 23.
Bf4 Rab8 24. Ng3 Qf6 25. Rfe1 Rxe1+ 26. Rxe1 Qg6 27. Qa3 Rb1 {White winning
this game is a hopeless task by now.} 28. Rxb1 Qxb1+ 29. Kh2 Qb4 30. Qe3 Qd4
31. Qf3 c4 32. Be3 Qd3 33. Ne4 c3 34. Qf4 c2 35. Ng5 Qf5 36. Qc4 Qe5+ 37. g3
Qf5 (37... Bf5) 38. Qxc7 Bb5 39. g4 Qe5+ 40. f4 Qxd5 41. Qxc2 Bd3 42. Qc8 Qxa2+
43. Kg3 a5 44. f5 Qe2 45. Qe8 Bc4 46. Qe4 a4 47. f6 g6 48. h4 Qd3 49. Qe8 a3
50. h5 gxh5 51. gxh5 Be6 52. Kf2 Qf5+ 53. Nf3 Bd5 54. Bh6 Qxf3+ 55. Ke1 Qe4+
0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.09"]
[Round "3.2"]
[White "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Black "Karjakin, Sergey"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "A01"]
[WhiteElo "2754"]
[BlackElo "2758"]
[Annotator "Shahid"]
[PlyCount "124"]
[EventDate "2021.08.31"]
[EventType "tourn"]
[EventCountry "NOR"]
[SourceTitle "playchess.com"]
[Source "ChessBase"]
[SourceQuality "1"]
1. b3 e5 2. Bb2 Nc6 3. c4 Nf6 4. Nf3 e4 5. Nd4 Nxd4 6. Bxd4 b6 7. g3 Bb7 8. Bg2
Bc5 9. Bb2 h5 10. d4 Bb4+ 11. Nc3 h4 12. e3 d5 13. Qc2 Bc8 (13... h3 14. Bf1
Bc8 (14... a5)) 14. h3 hxg3 15. fxg3 c6 16. O-O-O Be6 17. Ne2 a5 18. Nf4 a4 19.
Kb1 axb3 20. Qxb3 Bd6 (20... Qd6) 21. cxd5 cxd5 22. g4 O-O (22... Bxf4 23. exf4
O-O 24. f5 Bd7) 23. g5 Bxf4 24. gxf6 Bh6 25. fxg7 Kxg7 26. Bxe4 f5 (26... Qd7)
27. Rhg1+ (27. Rdg1+ Kh7) 27... Kh7 28. Bd3 Qd6 29. Rg2 Bxe3 30. Re1 Bh6 31.
Qd1 Bd7 32. Qh5 Rf6 33. Reg1 Qf8 34. Bc1 Qb4+ 35. Bb2 Qf8 36. a3 $6 (36. Qh4)
36... Rc8 37. Rg6 (37. Ka2) 37... Be8 $2 38. Rxf6 Bxh5 39. Rxf5 Kh8 40. Rxf8+
$2 (40. Rxh5 Rc7 41. Rg6 Rh7 42. Rxb6 Qf7 43. Rhxh6 Rxh6 44. Rxh6+ Kg8 45. Rb6
$18) 40... Rxf8 41. Re1 Rf3 42. Re6 Kg7 43. Be2 Rxh3 44. Bxh5 Rxh5 45. Rxb6 Be3
46. a4 Rh4 47. a5 (47. Rb4) 47... Bxd4 48. Rb4 Rh1+ 49. Ka2 Bxb2 50. Kxb2 Kf6
51. a6 Rh8 52. Kb3 Ke5 53. Rb6 d4 54. a7 Ra8 55. Ra6 Kd5 56. Kb4 d3 57. Kb5 d2
58. Ra1 Kd4 59. Kb4 $4 (59. Ka6) 59... Kd3 60. Ra3+ Ke2 61. Ra2 Ke1 62. Ra1+
d1=Q 0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.09"]
[Round "3.2"]
[White "Tari, Aryan"]
[Black "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B23"]
[WhiteElo "2642"]
[BlackElo "2792"]
[Annotator "Shahid"]
[PlyCount "62"]
[EventDate "2021.08.31"]
[EventType "tourn"]
[EventCountry "NOR"]
[SourceTitle "playchess.com"]
[Source "ChessBase"]
[SourceQuality "1"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 d6 3. f4 g6 4. Nf3 Bg7 5. Bb5+ Bd7 6. Bc4 Nc6 7. d3 Na5 8. Bd2
e6 9. Qe2 Ne7 10. e5 Nf5 11. Bb5 d5 12. Bxd7+ Qxd7 13. Nxd5 exd5 14. Bxa5 Qb5
15. Bc3 d4 16. Bd2 (16. a4 Qd7 (16... Qb6 17. a5 Qb5 18. Bd2 O-O (18... Qxb2
19. O-O) 19. O-O)) 16... Qxb2 17. O-O O-O 18. Qe4 (18. a4 Qxc2 19. Rfc1) 18...
b6 19. g4 (19. Rfc1) 19... Ne3 20. Bxe3 dxe3 21. Rae1 (21. c4 e2 22. Rfe1)
21... Qxc2 22. f5 Rfe8 23. e6 (23. fxg6 fxg6 (23... hxg6 24. e6) 24. Qd5+)
23... Qxa2 24. Rxe3 $2 (24. Ng5 fxe6 25. f6 $18) 24... fxe6 25. fxg6 h6 26. g5
Qd5 27. Qh4 Qf5 28. Qh5 $2 Rf8 29. Re4 Rf6 30. Rg4 Rxg6 31. Nh4 Qxg4+ 0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.09"]
[Round "3.2"]
[White "Rapport, Richard"]
[Black "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "A08"]
[WhiteElo "2760"]
[BlackElo "2855"]
[Annotator "Shahid"]
[PlyCount "83"]
[EventDate "2021.08.31"]
[EventType "tourn"]
[EventCountry "NOR"]
[SourceTitle "playchess.com"]
[Source "ChessBase"]
[SourceQuality "1"]
1. g3 d5 2. Nf3 c5 3. Bg2 Nc6 4. O-O e5 5. d3 Be7 6. Na3 Be6 7. e4 d4 8. Nc4
Qc7 9. Ng5 Bxg5 10. Bxg5 f6 11. Bd2 h5 12. f4 h4 13. Qe1 hxg3 14. Qxg3 O-O-O
15. b3 Nh6 16. fxe5 Nxe5 17. Nxe5 fxe5 18. c3 (18. Rf2) 18... Ng4 19. cxd4 exd4
20. Bf4 Qe7 21. Rac1 g5 22. Rxc5+ Qxc5 23. Rc1 Qxc1+ 24. Bxc1 Rxh2 25. Bxg5 (
25. Bf3 Rc2 (25... Rh7 26. Bxg5 Nf6 (26... Nh2 27. Bxd8 Nxf3+ 28. Qxf3 Kxd8 29.
Qf6+ $18) 27. Qf4) 26. Bxg5 Nh2 (26... Rg8 $4 27. Bxg4 $18 Rc6 28. Bxe6+ Rxe6
29. Qg4) 27. Bg2 Rg8 28. Qe5) 25... Rg8 26. Qd6 Rxg5 27. Qxe6+ Kd8 28. Qd6+ Ke8
29. Bf3 (29. Qb8+ Ke7 30. Qxb7+ Ke6 31. Qc8+ Ke7 32. Qc7+ Ke6 33. Qd8) 29...
Ne5+ 30. Kf1 Nxf3 31. Qe6+ Kd8 32. Qf6+ Ke8 33. Qxf3 (33. Qe6+ Kf8 (33... Kd8
34. Qf6+) 34. Qf6+) 33... Rc5 34. Kg1 Rxa2 35. Qf4 Rcc2 36. Qb8+ Ke7 37. Qe5+
Kf7 38. Qd5+ Kg6 39. Qf5+ Kg7 40. Qg5+ Kh7 41. Qh5+ Kg7 42. Qg5+ 1/2-1/2
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.12"]
[Round "9"]
[White "Karjakin, Sergey"]
[Black "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "B33"]
[WhiteElo "2758"]
[BlackElo "2855"]
[Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"]
[PlyCount "107"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 e5 {Carlsen goes for the
Sveshnikov that he successfully used both in his match against Caruana and
against Karjakin as well.} 6. Ndb5 d6 7. Nd5 Nxd5 8. exd5 Ne7 9. c4 Ng6 10. Qa4
Bd7 11. Qb4 Qb8 {The main move.} ({The last time the two played, Carlsen
slightly surprised his opponent with} 11... Bf5 12. h4 h5 {to which Karjakin
came up with a novelty:} 13. Bg5 $146 {Karjakin improved on the previous game}
({which was also one of the London WCC games:} 13. Be3 a6 14. Nc3 Qc7 15. g3
Be7 16. f3 Nf8 17. Ne4 Nd7 {Caruana,F (2832)-Carlsen, M (2835) London 2018})
13... Qb8 14. Be2 a6 15. Nc3 Qc7 16. g3 Be7 17. Be3 e4 {Carlsen did not dwell
on the opening too much, but he mentioned that the computer almost always
likes White. Apparently, the analysis of the world champion went quite deep
and included the sacrifice of the h5-pawn.} 18. O-O O-O 19. Bxh5 Ne5 20. Be2
Qd7 {\"I quite like this as I am setting up some Bf5-g4 ideas.\" (Carlsen)
Black's compensation is based on the weakness of the light squares around the
enemy king. Later the pawn on e4 is a pivotal point around what the second
players does. It provides wonderful outposts for the black knight, one of
which is way too deep in White's position. Black won eventually.}) 12. h4 {
The principled continuation. Karjakin praised his opponent after the game for
his great understanding of the arising positions, but nevertheless dared to
enter the principled line.} h5 13. Be3 a6 14. Nc3 Be7 ({Another game that
Carlsen won convincingly went} 14... f5 15. O-O-O Be7 16. g3 O-O 17. Be2 e4 {
Van Foreest, J (2612)-Carlsen,M (2835) Wijk aan Zee 2019. As you can see Black
is ready to sacrifice the h-pawn in these lines.}) ({Black won a crucial rapid
game with} 14... a5 15. Qb3 a4 16. Qd1 Be7 17. g3 Qc8 18. Be2 Bg4 19. Rc1 Bxe2
20. Qxe2 Qf5 {Caruana,F (2832)-Carlsen,M (2835) London 2018}) 15. g3 O-O 16.
Be2 b5 $1 {\"Now he not only sacrifices the h- but the b-pawn as well.\"
(Karjakin)} 17. cxb5 axb5 18. Bxh5 {\"I was not happy with Bxh5. I was not
impressed, I would say.\" (Karjakin)} ({But what else $2} 18. O-O Bd8 {is very
comfortable for Black.}) ({Whereas} 18. Bxb5 $6 Bg4 {leaves the white kingside
unattended.}) 18... Bd8 $146 {A strong maneuver that brings the black bishop
out and a novelty at the same time.} (18... Rc8 19. Rc1 Bd8 20. Bxg6 fxg6 21.
O-O Ba5 22. Qb3 Bxc3 23. Rxc3 Rxc3 24. bxc3 {1/2-1/2 (24) Pecka,J (2429)
-Pravec,L (2380) ICCF email 2016}) 19. O-O Ne7 $1 {The second point behind
Carlsen's maneuver. The knight is threatening to sharply increase its power
when it lands on the f5-square. Karjakin anticipated it and had in mind to
defend with} 20. Bg5 (20. Bg4 {loses to} Ba5 {(Karjakin)}) ({Whereas after} 20.
Be2 Nf5 {White was afraid that he would lose his strong bishop after} 21. Bxb5
Nxe3 22. fxe3 {Indeed Black has a big attack on the kingside coming after} Bh3
23. Rf2 f5) 20... Ba5 21. Qb3 Nf5 22. Ne2 {That was White's pawn. He is at
least covering the d4-square. However, Carlsen finishes his development:} Bb6 {
And it became obvious that he has skillfully outplayed his opponent. All the
black light pieces are excellent, and next the majors will follow.} 23. Rac1 ({
Or} 23. Qf3 Qb7 {and Black keeps mounting pressure.}) 23... Ra4 $1 {
Underestimated by Karjakin. Now the threat is to kick the bishop away with
tempo with g7-g6, followed by the sharp e5-e4-e3 break.} 24. Rc6 $1 {\"I could
not see a move.\" (Karjakin) Thus, the Russian GM came up with a brilliant
sacrifice, the best practical chance in the situation.} ({An example of the
above-mentioned plan is seen in the line} 24. a3 g6 25. Bf3 e4 26. Bg2 e3 27.
fxe3 Re8 28. Rxf5 Bxf5) 24... Bxc6 {\"Now instead of attacking, Black will
have to defend.\" (Karjakin)} ({Surprisingly, the materialistic machine
considers the move in the game a mistake and suggests instead either} 24... Bc5
$1) ({Or} 24... Qa7 $1 {ignoring the rook while concentrating on his attack.})
25. dxc6 Rc4 26. a4 Nd4 {A surprising decision.} ({White expected} 26... Rxa4
27. Bg6 ({Another plausible idea would be to bring the rook in with} 27. Rc1
Qa7 {with the idea} 28. c7 ({Stronger is} 28. Kg2 $1 {with a possible amazing
forcing line:} Bxf2 29. c7 Rc4 30. Rxc4 bxc4 31. Qxc4 Bc5 32. Qxf7+ Rxf7 33.
Bxf7+ Kxf7 34. c8=Q Nd4 {and suddenly it is equal $1}) 28... Bxc7 29. Qc2 {
(Karjakin) However, in this line he missed} g6 $1) ({And a third idea was} 27.
Nc3 Rc4 28. Qxb5 {But here too, he blundered in his preliminary calculations.}
Rc5 ({For Black can with thanks to the little tactics} 28... Rxc3 $1 29. bxc3
Bxf2+) 29. Qd3 Nd4 {(Karjakin)}) 27... Nd4 28. Nxd4 Bxd4 29. Be7 Rc4 30. Bd3
Rxc6 {(Karjakin) The computer evaluates the position as equal.}) 27. Nxd4 Bxd4
28. axb5 d5 {Perhaps this pawn has to stay where it is. The position is hugely
irrational, and Black's last move weakens the c-file.} ({\"Of course, he had\"
} 28... Rxc6 29. Be7 {\"with a draw\" (Karjakin), but apparently Black has to
suffer for it.}) 29. Rc1 $1 {...which White immediately uses. Without the
super-rook on c4, the white pawns become enormously powerful. Karjakin felt
that he is already better.} Rxc1+ 30. Bxc1 Qb6 31. Be3 $3 {Also a very strong
decision by Karjakin. He keeps limiting the opponent's counterplay.} Bxe3 32.
fxe3 Rd8 33. Kg2 g6 34. Be2 {White was not sure about this move.} ({Indeed} 34.
Bg4 {would be stronger in order to provoke a weakening of the opponent's king}
f5 35. Bf3 e4 36. Be2 Kh7 37. Qc3 {when White should be able to convert
combining the pawn queenside play with an attack against the enemy king.})
34... Kg7 35. Qc3 d4 36. exd4 exd4 37. Qd3 $1 {Another very strong decision by
the Russian GM. He does not want to let this pawn make a move as this will
open the floodgates for the enemy major pieces.} ({Even at the cost of the
pawn itself, Black's play might become annoying:} 37. Qc4 d3 $1 38. Qc3+ f6 39.
Bxd3 Qe3 {leads to conversion problems, e.g} 40. c7 Rxd3 41. Qxd3 ({White may
even lose if he is too greedy} 41. c8=Q $4 Qf3+ 42. Kg1 Rd1+) 41... Qxd3 42.
c8=Q Qe2+ {and a perpetual.}) 37... Qa5 38. Qc2 {This, however, misses the
clear win.} ({It is a good moment to weaken the black king with} 38. h5 $1 gxh5
39. Bxh5 {Then once more White can combine the threats of a queenside
promotion with kingside mate as in the line} Qc7 40. Qc4 $1 {Often one of the
threats is to capture on f7.} d3 41. b6 Qxb6 42. Qxf7+ Kh8 43. Qf6+ Kg8 44.
Bf7+ Kh7 45. Qg6+ Kh8 46. Qh6#) 38... Qb4 39. b3 Re8 $1 ({Karjakin assumed that
} 39... d3 $5 {is still Black's best option, but he is likely winning after}
40. Bxd3 Rd5 41. c7 (41. Kh3 $1 {might also do.}) 41... Rc5 42. c8=Q Rxc8 43.
Qxc8 Qd2+ 44. Kh3 Qxd3 45. Qc4) 40. Bc4 Re7 {Now Carlsen misses a strong
continuation. He came on the open file, but stopped halfway through.} ({
Strong is} 40... Re3 $1 {Say} 41. Qf2 f6 {and White likely cannot make
progress since the pawn is not going anywhere after} 42. c7 ({and the queen
cannot be activated with} 42. Qf4 Qd2+ 43. Qf2 Qb4) 42... Qc5) 41. Qf2 ({
The subtle maneuver} 41. Qd3 $1 Qc5 42. Qf3 Qa7 43. Qd5 $1 {would be better,
and White is winning.}) 41... Qc3 42. Qf3 Qb4 {Retreat is all White needs.} ({
The computer is amazingly holding after} 42... f5 $3 {This pawn will be used
in the counteractions.} 43. Qd5 Qd2+ 44. Kh3 Qd1 $1 45. Qg8+ Kh6 46. Qf8+ Rg7
47. Bd5 Qg4+ 48. Kh2 d3 49. c7 f4 $1 {And somehow the machine found a
perpetual:} 50. gxf4 Qxh4+ 51. Kg2 Qg4+) 43. Kh3 {Too careful, and this almost
cost Karjakin the win.} ({It is not too late for the decisive} 43. Qd5 $1 Qd2+
44. Kh3 Qf2 45. c7) 43... Qd6 (43... Qe1 $1 {would have still made things
extremely tough for White.}) 44. Qf4 Qxf4 {Then the forcing} ({After} 44... Qc5
{Karjakin intended to repeat once} 45. Qf3 Qd6 {but was not sure how would he
win.}) 45. gxf4 d3 46. Bxd3 Re3+ 47. Kg2 Rxd3 {led to a position where it was
obvious that White would promote. But which pawn exactly is important.} 48. b6
$1 {Missed by Carlsen.} ({He only expected} 48. c7 Rxb3 49. c8=Q Rxb5 {with a
nice fortress.}) 48... Rxb3 49. b7 Rb6 50. h5 $1 {One last accuracy,
completely destroying any potential fortresses.} gxh5 51. Kh3 Rxc6 52. b8=Q Rc5
53. Qb2+ f6 54. Kh4 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.07"]
[Round "1.3"]
[White "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Black "Karjakin, Sergey"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C67"]
[WhiteElo "2792"]
[BlackElo "2758"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "73"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Russia"]
[BlackTeam "Russia"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "RUS"]
[BlackTeamCountry "RUS"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Nxe4 5. d4 Nd6 6. Bxc6 dxc6 7. dxe5 Nf5
8. Qxd8+ Kxd8 9. Nc3 Ke8 10. h3 h5 11. Bf4 Be7 12. Rad1 Be6 13. Ng5 Rh6 14.
Rfe1 Rd8 15. Rxd8+ Kxd8 16. Nce4 $146 (16. g4 hxg4 17. hxg4 Nd4 18. Rd1 c5 19.
Nxe6+ Rxe6 20. Ne2 Kc8 21. Nxd4 cxd4 22. Rxd4 g5 23. Bg3 Ra6 {Vachier-Lagrave,
M (2749)-Karjakin,S (2757) World Cup 2021}) 16... c5 (16... Bd5) 17. Nf6 $5
Bxa2 $6 (17... gxf6 18. Nxe6+ fxe6 19. Bxh6 Nxh6 20. exf6 Bxf6 21. Rxe6 Ng8 22.
c3 {and White will start pushing his kingside pawns.}) (17... Bc4 $5) 18. b3
Kc8 19. Nxf7 Rg6 20. Nh8 $1 {Winning the exchange and basically the game.} Rxf6
21. exf6 Bxf6 22. Be5 Bxe5 23. Rxe5 Nd4 24. Rxc5 b6 25. Rc4 c5 26. Ra4 Bb1 27.
c3 Nc6 28. Nf7 Bc2 29. Ra3 a5 30. Nd6+ Kc7 31. Nc4 Na7 32. Ne3 Bh7 33. b4 Nb5
34. Ra1 cxb4 35. cxb4 axb4 36. Nd5+ Kd6 37. Nxb4 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.12"]
[Round "5.3"]
[White "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Black "Tari, Aryan"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C54"]
[WhiteElo "2754"]
[BlackElo "2642"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "71"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "France"]
[BlackTeam "Norway"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "FRA"]
[BlackTeamCountry "NOR"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. d3 Bc5 5. c3 d6 6. O-O a5 (6... a6 7. a4 Ba7
8. Re1 O-O 9. h3 h6 10. Nbd2 Re8 11. b4 Be6 12. Bxe6 Rxe6 13. Qc2 Qd7 14. Nf1
d5 {Dominguez Perez,L (2758)-Firouzja,A (2759) Online 2021}) 7. Re1 O-O 8. h3
h6 9. Bb5 Ba7 10. Nbd2 Ne7 11. d4 Ng6 12. a4 c6 13. Bd3 Re8 14. Bc2 Be6 $146 (
14... Bb8 15. Nf1 d5 16. Nxe5 dxe4 17. Nxg6 fxg6 18. f3 exf3 19. Rxe8+ Qxe8 20.
Qxf3 g5 {Rutkus,R (2291)-Rallabandi,P (2462) ICCF email 2019}) 15. Nf1 Qc7 16.
Ng3 Rad8 17. Be3 d5 {\"Kind of logical.\" (Firouzja)} 18. Nxe5 Nxe5 19. Bf4
Nfd7 20. exd5 Bxd5 21. dxe5 Nxe5 22. Qe2 ({\"For 10 minutes I thought I could
play} 22. Qh5 {but then I saw that after} Bxf2+ {I can resign here,\" said
Firouzja, the point being} 23. Kxf2 Nd3+ 24. Bxd3 Qxf4+ 25. Kg1 Rxe1+ 26. Rxe1
Qxg3) 22... Qb6 23. Be3 Qc7 24. Bf4 Qb6 25. Kh1 $6 {Firouzja didn't want a
draw but this is rather risky.} Ng6 $2 ({Strong was} 25... Bc4 $1 26. Qe4 Bd3
27. Bxd3 Nxd3 28. Qxe8+ Rxe8 29. Rxe8+ Kh7 30. Be3 Qxb2 31. Rf1 Bc5 $1 (31...
Bxe3 $2 32. fxe3 {is too dangerous}) 32. Ne4 Qe2 33. Kg1 {and now the engine
plays the odd move} (33. Rb1 $2 Bxe3 34. fxe3 Ne1) 33... Ba3 {and claims a
close to winning advantage.}) 26. Qxe8+ Rxe8 27. Rxe8+ Kh7 28. Re2 {This is
just too dangerous for Black.} Kg8 (28... Bb3) (28... Qd8) 29. Be3 c5 30. Rd1
Qc6 31. Red2 $1 {Not wasting a tempo.} Bxg2+ 32. Kh2 Bf3 33. Rd8+ Kh7 34. R1d6
Qc7 35. R6d7 Qc6 36. Rxf7 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.13"]
[Round "6.3"]
[White "Rapport, Richard"]
[Black "Tari, Aryan"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "D41"]
[WhiteElo "2760"]
[BlackElo "2642"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "115"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Hungary"]
[BlackTeam "Norway"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "HUN"]
[BlackTeamCountry "NOR"]
1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 c5 4. cxd5 cxd4 $5 {The Von Hennig-Schara Gambit.} 5.
Qa4+ Bd7 6. Qxd4 exd5 7. Nf3 {Rapport admitted that it was not very principled
of him not to take on d5.} Nf6 8. Bg5 {\"The main line with the bishop on c8.
\" (Rapport)} Nc6 9. Qd3 Rc8 $146 (9... Be7 10. e3 Qa5 11. Be2 Ne4 12. Bxe7
Nxe7 13. O-O Nxc3 14. bxc3 Rc8 15. Rfc1 O-O 16. c4 Be6 {Edouard,R (2646)
-Horvath,J (2531) Vaujany 2012}) 10. e3 h6 11. Bh4 Bb4 (11... g5 12. Bg3 Qb6
13. Qb5 Bb4 {is comfortable for Black (Rapport).}) 12. Rc1 {\"I was kind of
relieved.\" (Rapport)} O-O 13. Be2 g5 14. Bg3 Bxc3+ 15. bxc3 Be6 (15... Ne4 $5
16. Qxd5 Qe7 {gives some compensation according to Rapport.}) 16. Nd4 Nxd4 17.
Qxd4 Ne4 18. f3 Nd6 ({A funny idea was} 18... Nxc3 19. Rxc3 Qa5 20. Be5 f6 {
but Rapport had calculated} 21. Qd3 $1 fxe5 22. Qg6+ Kh8 23. Qxh6+ Kg8 24.
Qxe6+ Kh7 25. Kf2 $1 {and White has the better chances.}) 19. Bxd6 Qxd6 20. h4
Qb6 ({On} 20... Qg3+ {Rapport was planning} 21. Kd2 $1 (21. Kf1 $2 g4 22. fxg4
f5 23. g5 f4) 21... g4 22. fxg4 (22. Qf6)) 21. hxg5 ({Rapport was also
considering to include} 21. Qxb6 axb6) 21... Qxd4 22. exd4 hxg5 23. Rh5 {
White is better in the endgame.} f6 ({A better change might have been} 23...
Kg7 24. Rxg5+ Kf6) 24. Bd3 Rf7 25. Kd2 Kf8 (25... Rg7 $5 26. Re1 Kf7 {Rapport})
26. Re1 Rc6 27. Rh8+ Kg7 28. Reh1 {White will win a pawn now.} f5 29. R1h7+ Kf6
30. Rh6+ Kg7 31. Bb5 Rc8 32. R8h7+ Kg8 33. Rxf7 Bxf7 34. Bd7 (34. Rf6 f4 35.
Rf5 Be6 36. Rxg5+ {was also good.}) 34... Rd8 35. Bxf5 Kg7 36. Rh7+ Kf6 37. Bd3
(37. g4 $5 {\"I'm too old for this kind of move.\" (Rapport)}) 37... Rc8 38.
Rh6+ Ke7 39. Bf5 Rc4 40. Kc2 b6 41. Kb3 Rc7 42. Bg4 Kf8 43. Rf6 Kg7 44. Rd6 Re7
45. g3 Kf8 46. a3 (46. a4 $5 {Polgar}) 46... Re1 ({It's too late for} 46... Re2
47. Rd8+ Ke7 48. Rd7+ Kf6 49. Rxa7 Bg6 50. Rb7 Bd3 51. Rxb6+) 47. Rd8+ Re8 48.
Rxe8+ Kxe8 (48... Bxe8 49. Be6 Bc6 50. Kc2 Ke7 {was slightly more tenacious
but should also lose.}) 49. Kb4 Kd8 50. Kb5 Kc7 51. Ka6 Kb8 52. f4 gxf4 53.
gxf4 Bg6 54. f5 Be8 55. Bf3 Bf7 56. a4 Bg8 57. Bh5 Kc7 58. Kxa7 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.13"]
[Round "11"]
[White "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Black "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C78"]
[WhiteElo "2855"]
[BlackElo "2754"]
[Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"]
[PlyCount "103"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O b5 6. Bb3 Bc5 {The Archangelsk/
Moller variation was very popular at the beginning of this century and is
famous for its forcing nature.} 7. a4 Rb8 8. c3 d6 9. d4 Bb6 10. a5 $1 {
Carlsen, however, comes fully armed for the game. This move is more profitable
than 10. axb5 at the moment according to Megabase.} Ba7 11. h3 Bb7 12. Be3 Nxe4
13. Nbd2 $1 $146 {A novelty that was blitzed by the world champion. Apparently,
he does not consider this line a likely defensive choice for Nepomniachtchi in
the coming WCC and fires heavily at his younger opponent.} ({An earlier game
saw super-sharp middlegame play:} 13. d5 Bxe3 14. dxc6 Nxf2 15. Qe2 Nxh3+ 16.
Kh1 Nf2+ 17. Rxf2 Bxf2 18. Qxf2 Bxc6 19. Nxe5 Bxg2+ 20. Kg1 Qf6 21. Nxf7 Qxf2+
22. Kxf2 Rf8 23. Kxg2 Rxf7 24. Bxf7+ Kxf7 25. Nd2 {which finally ended with an
endgame that the first player slowly won, Duda,J (2738) -Vidit,S (2726) World
Cup 2021}) 13... Nxd2 ({The other direction was} 13... exd4 $5 14. cxd4 Nxd2
15. Qxd2 {when White has full compensation for the pawn thanks to his active
pieces and play along the c-file.}) 14. Qxd2 O-O ({Now} 14... exd4 $2 {is no
more playable due to} 15. Bg5 $1 f6 16. Rfe1+ {with a decisive attack.}) 15.
dxe5 dxe5 16. Qxd8 Rbxd8 17. Bxa7 Nxa7 18. Nxe5 {All of this was blitzed by
Carlsen. After some thought, Firouzja finds the best defense:} Bd5 $1 ({
Black is not prepared for aggressive play. An active move like} 18... Rd2 {
would easily backfire:} 19. Rad1 $1 Rxb2 20. Bxf7+ $1 Rxf7 21. Nxf7 Kxf7 22.
Rd7+ {and White wins everything back with interest.}) 19. Bc2 $1 {The only way
to preserve some advantage. The Spanish bishop will be always better than its
counterpart, even though it stands in the center. The problem is not with the
black bishop, but with the black queenside pawns, fixes on light squares.} Nc6
({In hindsight, a better idea seemed to defend with a pair of rooks on the
board as in the line} 19... Rfe8 20. Rfe1 Nc6 21. Nxc6 Bxc6 22. Rxe8+ Rxe8 23.
Rd1 Kf8) 20. Nxc6 Bxc6 21. Rad1 Rfe8 22. Rxd8 Rxd8 23. Rd1 $1 {Now Carlsen
trades everything and plays without any risk for the full point.} Rxd1+ ({
Even with the loss of a tempo} 23... Re8 $5 {deserves attention, although then
White will bring his king out quickly after} 24. f3) 24. Bxd1 Kf8 25. f4 $1 {
First of all, White opens a path for his king. Second of all, he expands on
the kingside. One weakness alone on the opposite wing will not win the game
for him. He needs a second weakness, and the only place to search for such is
the kingside.} Ke7 26. Kf2 Kd6 {Firouzja's moves are obvious and easy to
understand. He does everything he can to improve his pieces.} 27. b4 Bd5 ({
In case of the aggressive} 27... Kd5 $5 {White likely planned} 28. Bf3+ Kd6 29.
Be2 {to improve his bishop.}) ({However} 27... f6 $5 {made a lot of sense
placing every single kingside pawn on a dark square. The bishop would then try
to cover the holes on the light color.}) 28. g4 h6 {This one does not seem
right.} ({The question is, can Black build a fortress after} 28... f6 29. g5 f5
{Then White can try pushing his pawn all the way to h6 to create a reserved
passer (when the Be2-h5xg6 maneuver will become possible in some lines),
whereas his king will be heading to the d4 square. But what is Black just
waits with c7-c6 and shuffles the bishop along the a2-g8 diagonal then $2}) 29.
g5 $1 hxg5 ({Probably it was not too late for} 29... f6 $5 30. gxh6 gxh6 {
with the idea to meet} 31. Kg3 f5 32. Kh4 {with} Bg2 {sticking to the h3 pawn.}
) 30. fxg5 {Now Firouzja is on the verge of defeat. The h-pawn is soon to
become a distant passer and it will act as a second weakness for Black.
However, Firouzja trusts that his active king can save the day.} c5 31. Ke3
cxb4 32. cxb4 Ke5 33. h4 g6 ({Not} 33... Kf5 $2 34. Kd4) 34. Bg4 Be6 35. h5 $1
{The only idea that Carlsen had foreseen in advance. It somehow reminds me of
an AlphaZero game.} (35. Bf3 Bd5 {yields White nothing.}) 35... gxh5 ({As}
35... Bxg4 $4 36. h6) 36. Bxh5 Kf5 37. Bf3 Bc8 ({There is obviously no time for
} 37... Kxg5 38. Bb7) 38. Kd4 Kxg5 39. Ke5 {Down a pawn and just just two
pawns left, Carlsen pushes hard for the full point $1} f5 40. Kd6 f4 {And
Firouzja succumbs to the pressure, after all the the pressure he had to live
with.} ({The active king would have saved him after all in the line} 40... Kf4
$1 41. Bc6 Ke3 42. Kc7 Be6 43. Bb7 f4 {and many lines lead to a draw now, like}
44. Bxa6 Bc4 45. Bb7 f3 46. a6 f2 47. Bg2 Bd5 48. Bf1 Bc4 49. Bh3 Be6) 41. Ke5
$1 {Zugzwang $1 The clock is ticking, Black needs to find a move.} Kg6 {
And he cannot calculate enough to grab his only chance.} ({It seems as he
could have still saved himself with} 41... Bh3 $1 42. Bb7 Bf1 43. Bxa6 f3 44.
Bb7 f2 45. a6 Bh3 46. a7 f1=Q 47. a8=Q) 42. Kxf4 Kf6 43. Bd5 $1 {It is a
pretty zugzwang $1 Carlsen finishes the game in style.} Bd7 ({If the king moves
} 43... Ke7 44. Ke5 Kd8 45. Kd6 {Black will be forced in a final zugzwang.})
44. Bb7 Ke6 45. Ke4 $3 {The brilliant idea that wins $1} ({Instead} 45. Bxa6
Bc6 $1 46. Ke3 Kd5 {would have been a draw.}) 45... Kd6 46. Bxa6 Bc6+ 47. Kd4
Be8 48. Bb7 Bd7 49. Bf3 $1 {That is the difference. The king did not obstruct
his own bishop.} ({The rushed} 49. a6 $2 {would have spoiled Carlsen's victory
after} Bc6 $1 50. Bxc6 Kxc6 51. a7 Kb7 52. Kc5 Kxa7 53. Kxb5 Kb7) 49... Bc8 50.
Be2 Bd7 51. Bd3 Bc6 52. Be4 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.13"]
[Round "6.2"]
[White "Karjakin, Sergey"]
[Black "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C24"]
[WhiteElo "2758"]
[BlackElo "2792"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "109"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Russia"]
[BlackTeam "Russia"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "RUS"]
[BlackTeamCountry "RUS"]
1. e4 e5 2. Bc4 Nf6 3. d3 c6 4. Nf3 d5 5. Bb3 a5 6. a4 Bb4+ (6... Bd6 7. Nc3 d4
8. Ne2 c5 9. Ng3 Nc6 10. O-O O-O 11. Nh4 g6 12. Bg5 Be7 {Alekseenko,K (2703)
-Rakhmanov,A (2653) Moscow 2021}) 7. c3 Bd6 8. exd5 cxd5 9. Bg5 Be6 10. Na3
Nbd7 11. Nb5 Bb8 12. O-O O-O 13. Bh4 h6 14. Re1 Re8 15. d4 e4 16. Nd2 Ra6 17.
c4 dxc4 18. Bxc4 Bxc4 19. Nxc4 Qe7 $146 (19... Nb6 20. Bxf6 Qxf6 21. Ne3 Bf4
22. Qb3 Qd8 23. Rac1 Ra8 24. Rc5 Bxe3 25. fxe3 Rc8 26. Rf1 Qd7 27. Rcf5 Nc4 28.
Rxf7 Qe6 29. Nc7 {1-0 Yu,Y (2725)-Wang,Y (2737) Shenzhen 2016}) 20. d5 Qb4 21.
b3 Ne5 22. d6 Nxc4 23. bxc4 Bxd6 24. Bxf6 gxf6 25. Qg4+ Kf8 26. Rxe4 Rxe4 27.
Qxe4 Bc5 28. Nc7 Bxf2+ $5 29. Kf1 Qd2 $2 (29... Rc6 $1 {should be met by} 30.
Rb1 Qxc4+ 31. Qxc4 Rxc4 32. Kxf2 Rxc7 33. Rb5 {with a draw.}) 30. Qf3 ({
Both players are missing the strong} 30. Qh7 $1 {which wins for White.}) 30...
Rd6 $2 (30... Qd4 $1) 31. Nb5 $2 ({Here} 31. Qxf2 $1 {was good;} Qc3 {is a
double attack on a1 and c4 which can be both defended with} 32. Qa2 $1 {
and White keeps the knight.}) 31... Qb2 $1 32. Nxd6 Qxa1+ 33. Kxf2 Qd4+ 34. Ke2
Qxd6 {This should be a draw, but of course Karjakin has to try for more.} 35.
Qxb7 Qe5+ 36. Kd3 Qf5+ 37. Qe4 Qf1+ 38. Kd4 Qd1+ 39. Kc5 Qxa4 40. Qb1 Qa3+ 41.
Kb5 Kg7 42. c5 a4 43. Qb4 Qb3 44. c6 Qd5+ 45. Kb6 Qb3 46. Kc5 Qe3+ 47. Kb5 Qb3
$2 {The losing mistake.} ({Still good for a draw was} 47... a3 $1 48. c7 {
and now e.g.} Qe2+ 49. Qc4 (49. Kb6 Qb2) 49... Qxc4+ 50. Kxc4 a2 51. c8=Q a1=Q)
48. c7 $1 Qd5+ 49. Qc5 Qd7+ 50. Qc6 Qc8 51. Kxa4 h5 52. Kb5 h4 53. Kb6 h3 54.
g3 f5 55. Ka7 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.14"]
[Round "13"]
[White "Rapport, Richard"]
[Black "Karjakin, Sergey"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "E32"]
[WhiteElo "2760"]
[BlackElo "2758"]
[Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"]
[PlyCount "125"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Nf3 {Quite a decent line against the
Nimzo-Indian.} O-O 5. Qc2 d5 6. Bg5 h6 7. Bxf6 {More popular move nowadays in
comparison to the older 7.Bh4.} Qxf6 8. a3 Bxc3+ 9. Qxc3 dxc4 10. Qxc4 c6 {
Now the position resembles a Queen's Gambit Declined, when Black is trying to
free himself with the e6-e5 break ideally.} ({However, Black may also use the
c6-square more aggressively, as Nakamura did in this recent game:} 10... Nc6
11. Qc3 Re8 12. Rd1 e5 13. d5 Nb8 14. e3 Bg4 15. Be2 Nd7 16. O-O Bxf3 17. Bxf3
e4 18. Qxc7 exf3 19. Qxd7 fxg2 20. Rfe1 Qxb2 21. Rb1 Qxa3 22. Rxb7 Rf8 {
and it eventually ended in a draw in Shankland,S (2709)-Nakamura,H (2736) St.
Louis 2021}) 11. g3 Nd7 12. Bh3 $1 $146 {A novelty, which rules out the e6-e5
possibility. \"I thought that this move was very clever.\" (Rapport)} ({
Wild complications arose after} 12. Qc3 c5 13. Bg2 b6 14. Ne5 cxd4 15. Qc7 Nxe5
16. Bxa8 Ba6 17. Qxa7 Bc4 18. f4 d3 19. fxe5 Qxe5 20. Bf3 Qe3 {and Black's
initiative proved enough for the equality at the end in Zhao,X (2499)-Tan,Z
(2508) China 2017}) 12... c5 $1 {\"Also a fantastic move.\" (Polgar) And
pretty much the only thing that Black can do. Otherwise Karjakin would be in a
bind.} 13. dxc5 b6 14. c6 {\"Otherwise I allow him equality.\" (Rapport)} ({
As in the line} 14. cxb6 Nxb6 15. Qc3 Qxc3+ 16. bxc3 Ba6 {and White will not
be able to preserve his extra pawn for long.}) 14... Qxb2 15. O-O Nc5 16. Nd4
Rd8 {An obvious move.} ({However, there seems to be instant equality thanks to
a hidden computer resource:} 16... e5 $1 17. Bxc8 ({Or a similar idea in the
line} 17. Nf5 Kh7 $3) 17... Raxc8 18. Nf5 {The fork on e7 is a major threat
but Qc4-g4 would also win for White if allowed. And still, Black can parry
these two thanks to the pretty prophylaxis} Kh7 $1) 17. e3 $1 {As Rapport
explained, the position is extremely concrete. White chose not to fight for
the open file also for concrete reasons.} ({In case of the logical} 17. Rad1 {
He saw} Ba6 18. Qb4 {and the idea} Nd3 $3 {\"I might be worse.\" (Rapport)
Then he prolonged the line} 19. Rxd3 (19. exd3 Qxd4 {is indeed not looking
great for White.}) 19... Qxb4 20. axb4 Bxd3 21. Nxe6 Rd6 22. Nc7 Rad8 23. exd3
Rxc6 {\"And I felt like he has compensation.\" (Rapport)}) 17... Ba6 18. Qb4
Nd3 ({\"He cannot take the exchange.\"} 18... Qxb4 19. axb4 Bxf1 20. Bxf1 Ne4
21. Ba6 $1 {\"and I feel like I am very close to winning here.\" (Rapport) And
then he explained why:} Nd6 {loses to} 22. Bb7 $1 ({Also good seems} 22. c7 $5
Rd7 23. Rc1 Rc8 24. Bxc8 Nxc8 25. f4 {when White is better too.}) 22... Rab8
23. c7 Nxb7 24. Nc6 $3 {Just to realize that Black can actually defend with}
Ra8 25. Nxd8 Nxd8 26. Rxa7 Rc8 27. cxd8=Q+ Rxd8 {Rapport considered this a
draw, but there is a long and windy road until it is achieved by Black.}) 19.
Qxb2 Nxb2 20. Rfb1 ({Another plausible plan was} 20. Rfc1 $5 Nd3 21. Rc3 Nc5
22. a4) 20... Na4 21. f4 $1 ({At first White wanted to play} 21. Rb4 {but then
he disliked the counterplay} Nc3 22. a4 Ne2+ {(Rapport)}) ({Interesting was}
21. c7 $5 {As the black rook lacks a safe square. Karjakin might have planned}
Rd7 22. Bg2 Rc8 23. Bc6 Rxd4 24. exd4 Nc3 25. Rb4 Rxc7 {hoping for a fortress.}
) 21... Nc3 {Black uses the chance to decentralize his knight. The next moves
are very logical as well.} 22. Rb2 Nd5 23. Kf2 Nc7 24. Rd1 {Both sides are
fiercely fighting for the d-file. If White takes control of it he will use the
d7 outpost for infiltration, and win.} ({Although play like} 24. Bg2 Rd6 25.
Bf3 Rad8 26. a4 {also looks good for White.}) 24... Rd6 25. Rbd2 Rad8 26. Ke1
Bc4 ({Not} 26... Nd5 27. Nf3 {(Rapport)}) 27. e4 f6 28. Bg2 e5 $1 {Karjakin
decided to bet on a fortress. A wise decision, especially taking into an
account the arising time-trouble.} ({Instead} 28... Rf8 $5 {was a cunning
resource. \"I was not sure what am I doing here.\" (Rapport) The point of this
ambush is revealed in the line} 29. e5 ({However, White is not forced to fall
into it and may choose instead} 29. Bf3 $5) ({Or} 29. a4 {with an advantage in
both cases.}) 29... fxe5 30. fxe5 Rd5 31. Bxd5 Rf1#) 29. fxe5 fxe5 30. Nf3 Rxd2
31. Rxd2 Rxd2 32. Kxd2 Bb5 33. Nxe5 Kf8 {All Black needs now is to swap his
bishop for the enemy knight at a good moment to achieve a rock-solid position.}
34. h4 $1 {Securing a square for his own knight.} ({After} 34. Ke3 {Black
defends with} Ke7 35. Ng6+ Kf7 (35... Kf6 36. Nf4 $1)) 34... Ke7 35. Ng6+ Kd6 (
{The counterplay} 35... Kf6 36. h5 Kg5 {does not work after} 37. Ne7 Kxh5 (
37... Kg4 38. Nd5) 38. Nd5 {(Rapport)}) 36. e5+ Kc5 37. Ne7 Kd4 38. Nc8 {
A tough choice for the first player. Which pawn to take?} ({There is no clear
answer, as} 38. Nf5+ Kxe5 39. Nxg7 Ba6 $5 40. g4 Bc8 {promises Black decent
drawing chances as well.}) 38... Kxe5 39. Nxa7 Kd6 $5 {Rapport considered this
a mistake.} ({He suggested instead} 39... Ba6 40. Kc3 Kd6 41. Kb4 Ne6 42. a4
Nc7 43. Nb5+ Bxb5 44. axb5 Ke5 {(Rapport)}) 40. Nc8+ $1 $146 {\"He let my
knight out and after that it is really unpleasant [for Black] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4
e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Nf3 (Quite a decent line against the Nimzo-Indian. O-O Qc2 d5
Bg5 h6 Bxf6 More popular move nowadays in comparison to the older 7.Bh4. Qxf6
a3 Bxc3+ Qxc3 dxc4 Qxc4 c6 Now the position resembles a Queen's Gambit
Declined, when Black is trying to free himself with the e6-e5 break ideally.} (
{However, Black may also use the c6-square more aggressively, as Nakamura did
in this recent game: Nc6 Qc3 Re8 Rd1 e5 d5 Nb8 e3 Bg4 Be2 Nd7 O-O} 40. Bf3 {
Bxf3 e4 Qxc7 exf3 Qxd7 fxg2 Rfe1 Qxb2 Rb1 Qxa3 Rxb7 Rf8 and it eventually
ended in a draw in Shankland,S (2709)-Nakamura,H (2736) St. Louis 2021}) ({
g3 Nd7 Bh3 A novelty, which rules out the e6-e5 possibility. \"I thought that
this move was very clever.\" (Rapport) Wild complications arose after Qc3 c5
Bg2 b6 Ne5 cxd4 Qc7 Nxe5 Bxa8 Ba6 Qxa7 Bc4 f4 d3 fxe5 Qxe5} 40. Bf3 {Qe3 and
Black's initiative proved enough for the equality at the end in Zhao,X (2499)
-Tan,Z (2508) China 2017}) ({c5 \"Also a fantastic move.\" (Polgar) And pretty
much the only thing that Black can do. Otherwise Karjakin would be in a bind.
dxc5 b6 c6 \"Otherwise I allow him equality.\" (Rapport) As in the line cxb6
Nxb6 Qc3 Qxc3+ bxc3 Ba6 and White will not be able to preserve his extra pawn
for long. Qxb2 O-O Nc5 Nd4 Rd8 An obvious move. However, there seems to be
instant equality thanks to a hidden computer resource: e5 Bxc8 Or a similar
idea in the line Nf5 Kh7 Raxc8 Nf5 The fork on e7 is a major threat but Qc4-g4
would also win for White if allowed. And still, Black can parry these two
thanks to the pretty prophylaxis Kh7 e3 As Rapport explained, the position is
extremely concrete. White chose not to fight for the open file also for
concrete reasons. In case of the logical Rad1 He saw Ba6 Qb4 and the idea Nd3
\"I might be worse.\" (Rapport) Then he prolonged the line Rxd3 exd3 Qxd4 is
indeed not looking great for White. Qxb4 axb4 Bxd3 Nxe6 Rd6 Nc7 Rad8 exd3 Rxc6
\"And I felt like he has compensation.\" (Rapport) Ba6 Qb4 Nd3 \"He cannot
take the exchange.\" Qxb4 axb4} 40. Bf1 $5 Bxf1 $3 {Ne4 Ba6 \"and I feel like
I am very close to winning here.\" (Rapport) And then he explained why: Nd6
loses to Bb7 Rab8 c7 Nxb7 Nc6 Just to realize that Black can actually defend
with Ra8 Nxd8 Nxd8 Rxa7 Rc8 cxd8=Q+ Rxd8 Rapport considered this a draw, but
there is a long and windy road until it is achieved by Black.}) ({Also good
seems c7 Rd7 Rc1 Rc8 Bxc8 Nxc8 f4 when White is better too. Qxb2 Nxb2 Rfb1
Another plausible plan was Rfc1 Nd3 Rc3 Nc5} 40. a4) ({Na4 f4 At first White
wanted to play Rb4 but then he disliked the counterplay Nc3} 40. a4 {Ne2+
(Rapport)}) ({Interesting was c7 As the black rook lacks a safe square.
Karjakin might have planned Rd7 Bg2 Rc8 Bc6 Rxd4 exd4 Nc3 Rb4 Rxc7 hoping for
a fortress. Nc3 Black uses the chance to decentralize his knight. The next
moves are very logical as well. Rb2 Nd5 Kf2 Nc7 Rd1 Both sides are fiercely
fighting for the d-file. If White takes control of it he will use the d7
outpost for infiltration, and win. Although play like Bg2 Rd6} 40. Bf3 {
Rad8 a4 also looks good for White.}) ({Rd6 Rbd2 Rad8 Ke1 Bc4 Not Nd5 Nf3
(Rapport) e4 f6 Bg2 e5 Karjakin decided to bet on a fortress. A wise decision,
especially taking into an account the arising time-trouble. Instead Rf8 was a
cunning resource. \"I was not sure what am I doing here.\" (Rapport) The point
of this ambush is revealed in the line e5 However, White is not forced to fall
into it and may choose instead Bf3 Or a4 with an advantage in both cases. fxe5
fxe5 Rd5} 40. Bd5 {Rf1#}) ({fxe5 fxe5 Nf3 Rxd2 Rxd2 Rxd2 Kxd2 Bb5 Nxe5 Kf8 All
Black needs now is to swap his bishop for the enemy knight at a good moment to
achieve a rock-solid position. h4 Securing a square for his own knight. After}
40. Ke3 $1 {Black defends with} Ke7 {Ng6+ Kf7}) ({Kf6 Nf4 Ke7 Ng6+ Kd6 The
counterplay Kf6} 40. h5 {Kg5 does not work after Ne7 Kxh5 Kg4 Nd5} Nd5 {
(Rapport)}) {e5+} 40... Kc5 41. Ne7 Kd4 42. Nc8 {A tough choice for the first
player. Which pawn to take $2} ({There is no clear answer, as} 42. Nf5+ Ke5 43.
Nxg7 Ba6 $5 44. g4 Bc8 {promises Black decent drawing chances as well.}) 42...
Ke5 43. Na7 Kd6 {Rapport considered this a mistake.} ({He suggested instead}
43... Ba6 44. Kc3 Kd6 45. Kb4 Ne6 46. a4 Nc7 47. Nb5+ Bxb5 48. axb5 Ke5 {
(Rapport)}) 44. Nc8+ $1 {\"He let my knight out and after that it is really
unpleasant .\" (Rapport)} Kc5 45. Ne7 Ne6 46. Kc3 {It should be noted that
Karjakin was quite low on the clock at this point.} ({The Hungarian GM also
considered} 46. Bh3 Nc7 47. Bd7 Nd5 48. Nf5 {and was not sure if this was not
even better than his game choice.}) 46... Kd6 47. Kb4 Ba6 ({This was the last
moment when Black could have saved himself neatly with} 47... Nd4 $1 {to which
White planned} 48. Nf5+ Nxf5 49. Kxb5 Kc7 50. g4 Nxh4 ({But in the post-game
analysis, Rapport spotted that} 50... Nd4+ $1 {would be a draw.}) 51. Be4 {
to trap the knight.}) 48. Nf5+ Ke5 49. Bh3 h5 50. Ne3 Nc7 51. Bg2 g6 {\"After
I provoked g7-g6 and h6-h5 it is practically over. I will take them in the
long run\" (Rapport)} 52. a4 ({With the two weaknesses fixed on the color of
the White bishop} 52. Nc4+ Bxc4 53. Kxc4 {would have been even more effective
than the game continuation.}) 52... Kd4 53. Nc2+ Ke5 54. Kc3 {On top of
everything, Karjakin blunders in time-trouble...} Kd6 {...and quickly loses
his pawns:} 55. Be4 Be2 56. Nd4 Ke5 57. Bxg6 Nd5+ 58. Kd2 Bg4 59. Nb5 Ne7 60.
Be8 Bf3 61. c7 Bg4 62. Bf7 Nc6 63. Bxh5 $1 {A fantastic performance for the
Hungarian GM so far $1} 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.14"]
[Round "13.1"]
[White "Tari, Aryan"]
[Black "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "C89"]
[WhiteElo "2642"]
[BlackElo "2855"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "81"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Norway"]
[BlackTeam "Norway"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "NOR"]
[BlackTeamCountry "NOR"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 O-O 8. c3
Na5 ({Carlsen pointed out that on move 14 he has an extra tempo compared to
another theoretical line:} 8... d6 9. h3 Na5 10. Bc2 d5 11. d4 dxe4 12. Nxe5 c5
13. Be3 Bb7 14. Nd2 Rc8 {as in Carlsson-Lie, Oslo 2008. In today's game,
Carlsen has the move here.}) 9. Bc2 d5 10. d4 dxe4 11. Nxe5 c5 (11... Bb7 12.
Nd2 c5 13. Nxe4 Nxe4 14. Bxe4 Bxe4 15. Rxe4 Qd5 16. Qe1 Rfe8 {Vachier Lagrave,
M (2784)-Carlsen,M (2862) Online 2021}) 12. Be3 Bb7 $146 (12... Qc7 {was
played in the amateur game Foix Breto,A (1887)-Kripanov,A (1992) Girona 2014})
13. Nd2 Rc8 14. h3 {The Carlsson-Lie game, but with Black to move. Carlsen
spent 46 minutes on his next, as he couldn't really see a useful waiting move.}
Re8 ({Carlsen thought} 14... b4 {weakens his own position more than White's.})
15. Ng4 ({Carlsen was more afraid of} 15. dxc5 Bxc5 16. Ng4 Nxg4 17. hxg4 Bd6 (
17... Bxe3 18. Rxe3 Nc4 {is \"just a sad position\" (Carlsen)}) 18. g5 {
where he liked White.}) 15... Nd5 16. Bxe4 Nxe3 17. Nxe3 cxd4 18. cxd4 Bxe4 19.
Nxe4 Bb4 20. Nc3 Rxc3 21. bxc3 Bxc3 22. Re2 Bxa1 23. Qxa1 Nc4 24. Qe1 Nd6 ({
Carlsen almost considered} 24... Nxe3 {since he didn't think he was bettter.})
25. Nd5 $6 (25. d5 a5 26. Qc3) 25... Rxe2 26. Qxe2 Kf8 27. Ne3 {\"Really
passive.\" (Carlsen)} (27. Nb4 Qe7 28. Qxe7+ Kxe7 29. Nxa6 Nf5) 27... g6 28.
Qf3 Kg7 29. Qd5 Qf6 {\"I'm already happy that I can play a little bit. At this
point he already has to make some small choices and that's a good thing for me.
\" (Carlsen)} 30. a3 Qe6 31. Qc5 Ne4 32. Qc2 h5 33. Qd3 Nd6 ({Carlsen spent
eight minutes on} 33... Qc6 34. d5 Qc1+ 35. Nf1 Nd6 36. Qd4+ Kh7 37. Qb6 {
but, to his surrise, failed to notice that he has the simple} Qxa3 {here.}) 34.
Qd2 Qf6 {\"I was really happy with [this] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4
Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 O-O 8. c3 Na5 ((Carlsen pointed out that on
move 14 he has an extra tempo compared to another theoretical line: d6 h3 Na5
Bc2} 35. d5 {d4 dxe4 Nxe5 c5 Be3 Bb7 Nd2 Rc8 as in Carlsson-Lie, Oslo 2008. In
today's game, Carlsen has the move here. Bc2 d5 d4 dxe4 Nxe5 c5 Bb7 Nd2 c5} Ne4
{Nxe4 Bxe4 Bxe4 Rxe4 Qd5} 36. Qe1 $146 {Rfe8 Vachier Lagrave, M (2784)-Carlsen,
M (2862) Online 2021 Be3 Bb7 Qc7 was played in the amateur game Foix Breto,A
(1887)-Kripanov,A (1992) Girona 2014 Nd2 Rc8 h3 The Carlsson-Lie game, but
with Black to move. Carlsen spent 46 minutes on his next, as he couldn't
really see a useful waiting move. Re8 Carlsen thought} b4 {weakens his own
position more than White's. Ng4 Carlsen was more afraid of dxc5 Bxc5} 37. Ng4 {
Nxg4} hxg4 $6 {Bd6 g5 where he liked White. Nd5 Bxe4 Nxe3 Nxe3 cxd4 cxd4 Bxe4
Nxe4 Bb4 Nc3 Rxc3 bxc3 Bxc3 Re2 Bxa1 Qxa1 Nc4 Qe1 Nd6 Carlsen almost
considered Nxe3 since he didn't think he was bettter. Nd5 d5 a5} {Bxe3 Rxe3
Nc4 is \"just a sad position\" (Carlsen)} 38. Qc3 {Rxe2 Qxe2 Kf8 Ne3 \"Really
passive.\" (Carlsen) Nb4 Qe7 Qxe7+ Kxe7 Nxa6 Nf5 g6 Qf3 Kg7 Qd5 Qf6 \"I'm
already happy that I can play a little bit. At this point he already has to
make some small choices and that's a good thing for me.\" (Carlsen) a3 Qe6 Qc5
Ne4 Qc2 h5 Qd3 Nd6 Carlsen spent eight minutes on Qc6 d5 Qc1+ Nf1} Nd6 39. Qd4
Kh7 40. Qb6 {but, to his surrise, failed to notice that he has the simple Qxa3
here. Qd2 Qf6 \"I was really happy with . A tricky move.\" (Carlsen) Nd5 Nc4
Qc3 Carlsen thought Nxf6 Nxd2} Ne8 {Kf8 Nc7 Nb3} (40... Nc4 {Nxa6 Nxa3}) {
Nxa6 Nxd4 Nb4 Ke7} 41. Kf1 {Kd6 Ke1 Kc5 Kd2 Kc4 is probably lost for White.
Qd6 Nb4 a5 Nc2 a4 Qd3 h4 d5 Qe5 Ne3 \"A blunder but it's dead lost I think.\"
(Carlsen) Qa1+ Kh2 Qe5+ Kg1 Nxe3 fxe3 b4 d6 Qa1+ Kf2 bxa3 d7 Qf6+ Ke2 a2 d8=Q
Qxd8 Qxd8 a1=Q Qxh4 a3 0-1[Event "Norway Chess"]} 0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.14"]
[Round "13.3"]
[White "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Black "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C54"]
[WhiteElo "2754"]
[BlackElo "2792"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "113"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "France"]
[BlackTeam "Russia"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "FRA"]
[BlackTeamCountry "RUS"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. d3 Bc5 5. c3 d6 6. O-O O-O 7. Re1 a5 (7... h6
8. Nbd2 a6 9. a4 Ba7 10. h3 Re8 11. b4 Be6 12. Bxe6 Rxe6 13. Qc2 Qd7 {Vachier
Lagrave,M (2751)-So,W (2772) Online 2021}) 8. h3 Ba7 9. a4 h6 10. Nbd2 Be6 11.
Bxe6 fxe6 12. Nc4 Nh5 13. Be3 Bxe3 14. Rxe3 Nf4 15. Ncd2 $146 (15. Kh2 b6 16.
Qb3 Ng6 17. Rf1 Rb8 18. Ncd2 Qd7 19. Qb5 Rf7 20. g3 Rbf8 21. Kg2 Nge7 22. Ne1
Rd8 23. Nef3 Rdf8 24. Nh2 Nb8 25. Rf3 {½-½ Stubbs,M (2203)-Graterol,S (2245)
ICCF email 2018}) 15... Qf6 {\"It's completely equal here and Black is very
solid,\" said Firouzja, who is now starting lots of maneuvering to make g2-g3
possible:} 16. Nh2 Kh8 17. Qf1 Rf7 18. Ndf3 Raf8 19. g3 Nh5 20. Rd1 Qe7 21. Kg2
Qe8 22. Rd2 Ne7 ({Firouzja suggested to keep the knight on c6, e.g.} 22... Nf6
23. d4 exd4 24. cxd4 Nb4) 23. Qd1 Ng6 24. d4 {Here Firouzja thought he was a
bit better.} exd4 25. cxd4 Nf6 26. Qc2 e5 27. dxe5 dxe5 28. Rc3 c6 29. Rd6 {
\"Here I'm just better; it's very comfortable for White.\" (Firouzja)} Rd7 30.
Rcd3 Rff7 31. Nf1 Rxd6 32. Rxd6 Rd7 33. Rxd7 Qxd7 34. N1d2 Nh5 35. Kh2 Nf6 36.
Qc3 Qc7 37. Kg2 c5 38. Qd3 Ne7 39. Nc4 Nc6 40. Qd6 $1 {Missed by
Nepomniachtchi. \"Anyway, it's already gone, I think,\" said Firouzja.} Qd7 41.
Nfxe5 Nxe5 42. Qxe5 Qxa4 43. Qxc5 Qc2 44. e5 Ng8 45. Qd5 Qb3 46. e6 b5 47. Qa8
Kh7 48. Qe4+ Kh8 49. Nxa5 Qxb2 50. e7 Nxe7 51. Qxe7 b4 52. Qe8+ Kh7 53. Qe4+
Kh8 54. Qd5 Qa3 55. Nb3 Qa4 56. Nd4 Qe8 57. Qb7 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.15"]
[Round "15.1"]
[White "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Black "Rapport, Richard"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C65"]
[WhiteElo "2855"]
[BlackElo "2760"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "153"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Norway"]
[BlackTeam "Hungary"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "NOR"]
[BlackTeamCountry "HUN"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. d3 Ne7 5. O-O ({Not} 5. Nxe5 $4 c6 6. Bc4
Qa5+ 7. Nc3 Qxe5) 5... c6 6. Ba4 Ng6 7. Re1 Be7 8. d4 d6 9. c3 O-O 10. Nbd2 h6
11. Nf1 $146 (11. Bc2 Nh7 12. Nc4 Be6 13. Ne3 Ng5 14. d5 Nxf3+ 15. Qxf3 cxd5
16. exd5 Bd7 17. Nf5 Bxf5 18. Qxf5 Bg5 19. Bxg5 Qxg5 20. Qxg5 hxg5 {Predojevic,
B (2616)-Nestorovic,$146 (2405) Sarajevo 2013}) 11... Re8 12. Ng3 a5 13. Bc2
Qc7 14. a4 Bd7 15. h3 b5 16. Be3 Rab8 17. Qd2 b4 18. Bd3 bxc3 19. bxc3 Be6 20.
Qc2 Rb7 21. Nf1 Nh5 22. N1d2 Nhf4 23. Ba6 Rbb8 24. dxe5 dxe5 25. Rab1 Bd7 26.
Bc4 Ne6 27. Qa2 Nh4 28. Nxh4 Bxh4 29. Nf3 Be7 30. Rbd1 Bc8 31. Qc2 Nf8 32. Rd2
Be6 33. Qa2 Red8 34. Rxd8 Bxd8 35. Rd1 Be7 36. h4 Rd8 37. Rb1 Rb8 38. Rxb8 Qxb8
39. g3 Bd8 40. Kg2 Bc7 41. Bxe6 Nxe6 42. Qc4 Qe8 43. h5 Kh7 44. Qd3 Qe7 45. Nd2
Bd6 46. Nc4 Bc7 47. Qd1 Nf8 48. Qg4 Nd7 49. Kf1 Qe8 50. Kg2 Qe7 51. Qf5+ Kg8
52. g4 Nf8 53. g5 hxg5 54. Bxg5 Qc5 55. Ne3 Qd6 56. Qg4 g6 57. Bh6 Nd7 58. Nc4
Nf6 $2 ({Carlsen expected} 58... Qe6 {which should be enough to draw. \"I
think he missed 61.Bg5.\"}) 59. Qc8+ Qd8 60. Qxd8+ Bxd8 61. Bg5 $1 {Now White
wins a pawn and it's over.} gxh5 62. Bxf6 Bxf6 63. Nxa5 Kf8 (63... c5 64. Nb7
Kf8 65. a5) 64. Nxc6 Ke8 65. Nb4 Bd8 66. Nd3 f6 67. Kg3 Kd7 68. f3 Ba5 69. c4
Ke6 70. Kh4 f5 71. Kxh5 fxe4 72. fxe4 Kd6 73. Kg6 Bc7 74. Kf5 Kc6 75. Ke6 Kb6
76. Kd7 Bb8 77. c5+ 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.15"]
[Round "8"]
[White "Karjakin, Sergey"]
[Black "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B90"]
[WhiteElo "2758"]
[BlackElo "2754"]
[Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"]
[PlyCount "68"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. h3 {This was to be
expected by Karjakin as he used the line to win two games on demand in the
recent World Cup.} e5 ({In both those games, Sam Shankland chose} 6... Nc6 {
as a defence and then} 7. g4 g6 8. Be3 Nxd4 9. Qxd4 Bg7 10. e5 $5 $146 {
New and interesting according to the Megabase, and played very confidently by
Karjakin, just like his next moves. In the post-match analysis with GM Sergey
Shipov, Karjakin revealed that this was an idea of his second, the creative GM
Denis Khismatullin. \"I rushed to prepare and he showed me this between the
games.\"} (10. O-O-O Be6 11. f4 Qa5 12. f5 Bxa2 13. Bd2 O-O 14. Nd5 Nxd5 15.
Bxa5 Bxd4 16. Rxd4 Ne3 17. Kd2 Nxf1+ 18. Rxf1 Rfc8 19. b3 {Karjakin,S (2757)
-Shankland,S (2709) World Cup 2021}) 10... Nd7 11. O-O-O {Karjakin,S (2757)
-Shankland,S (2709) World Cup 2021}) 7. Nf3 ({Recently, Nakamura preferred to
retreat to} 7. Nde2 {instead, and got a pull after} h5 8. g3 Be7 9. Bg2 b5 10.
a4 b4 11. Nd5 a5 12. Nxe7 Qxe7 13. Bg5 Be6 14. O-O Qc7 15. Bxf6 gxf6 16. c3 Na6
17. f4 {Nakamura,H (2736)-Martinez Alcantara,J (2620) Chess.com 2021}) 7... Be7
8. g4 h6 (8... O-O 9. g5 Nh5 10. Bc4 Be6 11. Bb3 g6 12. Be3 Nd7 13. Qd2 Rc8 14.
O-O-O Nc5 {was Giri,A (2764)-Vachier Lagrave,M (2784) Wijk aan Zee NED 2021})
9. Rg1 {Karjakin is ready to challenge the black knight in order to fight for
the d5 square, a fundamental battle in the Najdorf.} Qc7 $146 {Played after
more than 25 minutes on the clock. The move is a logical novelty that deprives
the white bishop of its ideal diagonal.} ({It seems as White was following the
footprints of a fellow countryman. That game went} 9... Nc6 10. g5 hxg5 11.
Nxg5 Qc7 12. Bc4 Nd8 13. Bb3 Ne6 14. Qe2 Nxg5 15. Bxg5 Rxh3 16. Bxf6 Bxf6 17.
Nd5 {with strong initiative for White in Ponkratov,P (2619)-Drygalov,A (2500)
Chelyabinsk 2021}) 10. Nh4 {This is the fastest route towards the d5-point.} ({
Actually, White could have still put pressure on the f7-square with} 10. g5 $5
hxg5 11. Nxg5 {but Black has a nice way to parry his threats} Nc6 $5 12. Bc4
Nd8 $1 13. Bb3 Ne6 {with an equality.}) 10... g6 {Forced.} 11. Ng2 Be6 12. Ne3
Nbd7 {Black brought all his pieces out, whereas White practically only moved
his knights so far.} 13. h4 {Insisting on his plan. One more move (g4-g5) and
Karjakin will triumph positionally. However, since White delayed his
development by a lot, Firouzja finds a way to delay it with threats.} ({
Perhaps more sensible was} 13. Qf3 O-O-O {but Black does not experience any
problems here at all.}) 13... Qc6 $1 {Not letting the knight on d5 at all.} ({
Another way to prevent the jump might have been} 13... Rc8 {However, here
White may consider the positional pawn sacrifice} 14. g5 hxg5 15. hxg5 Nh5 16.
Ned5 $5 Bxd5 17. Nxd5 Qxc2 18. Qxc2 Rxc2 19. Bd3 {with clear compensation for
the pawn.}) 14. Qf3 {More preparation is needed.} ({As none of the knights can
occupy yet the outpost:} 14. Ned5 $2 Nxe4 $1) 14... Nc5 15. Bg2 {Finally White
is ready.} ({Still not} 15. Ned5 Nfxe4 $1) ({Firouzja preferred} 15. Bd3 {
and thought White was slightly better.} Nfd7 16. Ned5 Bxh4 17. Rh1 g5 {was a
line he gave but wasn't sure about it.}) 15... Na4 $1 {But it is Black who
starts the concrete operation first $1 \"I think it's my only way to get
counterplay.\" (Firouzja)} 16. Ned5 {A big blunder $1} ({Karjakin could not
have been satisfied with the line} 16. Nxa4 Qxa4 17. Bd2 Rc8 {when Black is
clearly on top.}) ({But perhaps, the lesser evil was some play like} 16. Ncd5
Bxd5 17. exd5 Qb6 (17... Qc5 {Firouzja}) 18. Kf1) 16... Nxc3 {The simplest
solution, chosen by Firouzja without much hesitation.} ({Although} 16... Nxg4 {
was also possible as in the line} 17. Nxa4 Bxd5 18. exd5 Qxa4 {the knight is
defended.}) 17. Nxf6+ {The only move.} (17. Nxc3 Bxg4 {is simply horrible for
White.}) 17... Bxf6 18. Qxf6 Kd7 $1 {Maybe Karjakin underestimated this move
from afar. Firouzja also suggested Karjakin might have missed it.} (18... Rh7
$5 {was possible as well, but then White can at least hope that this rook is
out of play.}) 19. g5 {Stopping f7-f5.} ({That move would have been possible
in case of} 19. Be3 Nxe4 20. Qf3 f5) 19... Nxe4 {The human choice.} ({Although
the computer promises Black even more with} 19... Qc4 $1 20. Qf3 Nxa2 $1 21.
Bd2 Nb4) 20. Qf3 d5 {Firouzja won a pawn and has built a solid central
construction.} (20... Bd5 $5) 21. Qd1 ({There was not time for} 21. gxh6 Qxc2)
({And} 21. Qd3 Bf5 {was no picnic for White either.}) 21... Qb6 $1 {Once more,
Black uses his lead in development.} 22. Be3 {After this desperate try it is
quickly over.} ({The most resilient was} 22. Qe2 {although there too, Black is
consolidating and should win after, say} hxg5 ({Or the computer} 22... Nd6 $1)
23. Bxe4 Qb4+ 24. Bd2 Qxe4 25. Qxe4 dxe4 26. hxg5 {although Firouzja didn't
immediately see his advantage here.}) 22... Qxb2 23. Bxe4 Qb4+ 24. c3 Qxe4 25.
Rb1 hxg5 26. Rb4 ({Or} 26. Rxb7+ Ke8 27. Rb4 d4 28. cxd4 Rc8 {with total
domination.}) 26... d4 27. cxd4 Ke8 $1 {A beautiful way to coordinate the
pieces.} 28. hxg5 Rh3 {Threatening Rxe3 $1} 29. Kd2 Bf5 30. Qb3 Rc8 31. Rc1
Rxc1 32. Kxc1 Rh1+ 33. Kd2 b5 34. d5 Qf3 ({Firouzja mentioned} 34... Qf3 35.
Bc5 Bd3 $1) 0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.15"]
[Round "15.2"]
[White "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Black "Tari, Aryan"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "A21"]
[WhiteElo "2792"]
[BlackElo "2642"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "68"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Russia"]
[BlackTeam "Norway"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "RUS"]
[BlackTeamCountry "NOR"]
1. c4 e5 2. Nc3 Bb4 3. Nd5 Be7 4. Nf3 d6 5. g3 (5. d4 Nf6 6. Nc3 exd4 7. Nxd4
d5 8. Bf4 O-O 9. e3 a6 10. Nf3 c6 11. cxd5 Nxd5 12. Nxd5 Qxd5 13. Qxd5 cxd5 14.
O-O-O Nc6 {Nepomniachtchi,I (2774)-Anand,V (2756) Saint Louis 2019}) 5... Nf6
6. Nc3 c5 $146 (6... Be6 7. d3 O-O 8. Bg2 Qc8 9. h4 Nc6 10. Bd2 h6 11. O-O Bh3
12. Rb1 Bxg2 13. Kxg2 Ng4 {Langner,D (2019)-Languidey,S (2257) Foz do Iguacu
2012}) 7. Bg2 h6 8. d3 Be6 {\"I had this position in my notes this morning.\"
(Tari)} 9. Nd2 Qd7 (9... d5 $6 10. Qb3) (9... Nc6 10. Nd5) 10. O-O O-O 11. Nd5
{This surprised Tari.} (11. Nde4) 11... Nxd5 12. cxd5 Bh3 13. e4 Bxg2 14. Kxg2
f5 15. f4 $6 ({White can still hope for a slight advantage after} 15. Nc4 {or})
(15. a4) 15... exf4 16. gxf4 Bf6 {I thought Black is in very good shape. It
seems like his center is a bit loose.\" (Tari)} 17. Nc4 Na6 18. Qf3 Rae8 19.
Qh3 $6 ({Although it doesn't look great either} 19. a4 Nb4 20. Bd2 Nc2 21. Rac1
Nd4 22. Qh3 {is more playable than the text move.}) 19... Bd4 ({Tari looked at
} 19... Qd8 {but he didn't want to allow} 20. Qxf5 Bxb2 21. Qxf8+ Rxf8 22. Bxb2
) 20. Be3 b5 {Now Nepomniachtchi comes with a good practical try...} 21. Bxd4
bxc4 22. Bc3 cxd3 23. Rg1 Rf7 24. Kh1 Rxe4 $2 (24... Qa4) (24... d2) 25. Rg6 $2
({...but the Russian GM doesn't take his chance here:} 25. Bxg7 $1 {was
suddenly a draw because of} Rxg7 26. Rxg7+ Qxg7 {and now the move Tari has
missed:} (26... Kxg7 $2 27. Rg1+ Kh7 28. Qh5 {even loses $1}) 27. Qxf5 $1 {
with the double threat Qxd4 and Rg1.} ({not} 27. Rg1 $2 Qxg1+ 28. Kxg1 Re1+ 29.
Kf2 d2 {and Black wins})) (25. Qxh6 Nc7 {is nothing for White.}) 25... Rxf4 26.
Rag1 Rg4 $1 {Calmly defending. Black is winning.} 27. R1xg4 fxg4 28. Qxd3 Nb4
29. Qe4 Re7 30. Qf4 Nxd5 31. Qc4 Qf5 32. Rxg4 Kh7 33. Bd2 Qf3+ 34. Kg1 Qd1+ 0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.16"]
[Round "17"]
[White "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Black "Karjakin, Sergey"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C65"]
[WhiteElo "2855"]
[BlackElo "2758"]
[Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"]
[PlyCount "105"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. d3 {An Anti-Berlin. Carlsen is probably
hiding what's in stock for the WCC.} Bc5 5. Bxc6 dxc6 6. O-O ({A recent top
game saw} 6. Nbd2 Nd7 7. Nc4 f6 8. c3 O-O 9. d4 exd4 10. cxd4 Nb6 11. Qb3 Be6
12. dxc5 Nxc4 13. Qc3 Ne5 14. Nxe5 fxe5 15. Be3 {and White was better in
Vachier-Lagrave,M (2751)-Van Foreest,J (2698) Online 2021}) 6... Nd7 7. c3 {
The Megabase likes this move, claiming that it now scores much better than the
old 7.Nbd2.} h6 8. Nbd2 O-O 9. Nc4 Re8 10. b4 Bd6 11. Be3 Nf8 12. Nfd2 $146 ({
The earlier game was between two of the best Spanish GMs:} 12. h3 Ng6 13. a4
Bf8 14. Qc2 Qf6 15. Qe2 b6 16. Nfd2 Be6 17. a5 b5 18. Nb2 a6 {and Black held
his own in Anton Guijarro,D (2703)-Salgado Lopez,I (2584) Online 2020}) 12...
Ng6 13. Nxd6 {Otherwise the bishop will step back to f8. \"I was feeling
pretty bad about this (move) but I was feeling even worse about the
alternatives.\" (Carlsen) In fact, the world champion was not sure why did he
go for this line at all (the coming WCC is to blame).} cxd6 {Once that the
pawns are undoubled Black has nothing to be afraid of.} 14. a4 {White was
hoping that he will fix some squares on the queenside.} d5 {That is the thing,
the black pawns are more fluid.} 15. Nb3 b6 $1 {\"A very nice move
positionally speaking.\" (Carlsen) Karjakin is slowly outplaying his mighty
opponent.} 16. a5 Rb8 17. Qc2 Be6 18. Rfb1 {\"The truth is already I might be
a little bit worse.\" (Carlsen)} Re7 {A very useful move which aims to double
the rooks on either the open or half-open file.} 19. c4 ({White was reluctant
to play} 19. f3 {for the time being as he would weaken his king.}) 19... d4 $1
{Karjakin cramps the white pieces further.} (19... f5 $5 {at once was good as
well.}) 20. Bd2 f5 21. axb6 axb6 22. f3 {At the end of the day, White was
forced to defend with this move.} ({Here the Norwegian GM, referencing similar
positions in the Ruy Lopez, noted that his planned} 22. c5 b5 {\"desperately
weakens my light squares, just f7-f5 and then the black knight lands on d5,
and just toast $1\" (Carlsen)}) 22... Rf7 {Black wants to force the opening of
the f-file.} ({The other plan was to build a step-by-step attack with} 22... f4
23. Be1 Rf7) 23. Rf1 {White cannot afford to leave the first rank unprotected.}
({This is illustrated by this nice model line:} 23. Ra3 Qf6 24. Rba1 fxe4 25.
fxe4 Qf2+ 26. Kh1 Qf1+ 27. Rxf1 Rxf1#) 23... Kh7 24. exf5 Bxf5 25. Be1 ({
Perhaps} 25. Nc1 $5 {to try and transfer the knight to e4 via the e2-g3-e4
route was a better idea.}) 25... Qg5 26. Rd1 {According to Carlsen, a sad
necessity.} ({He planned from afar to hold tactically after} 26. Bg3 Qe3+ 27.
Qf2 Bxd3 ({He realized in time the strong refutation} 27... Rd8 $1) 28. Nxd4
Qxf2+ 29. Rxf2 Rc8 30. Nc2 Bxc4 31. Ne3 {\"I am still holding on. I am a pawn
down, but I should be able to hold the draw.\" (Carlsen)}) 26... h5 ({White
expected} 26... Ra8 27. Bd2 {when Black holds all the trumps.}) 27. Bd2 Qh4 $1
{A somewhat puzzling choice to the world champion. But as we shall see,
Karjakin's choice was a very good one.} ({He speculated that his opponent
dismissed} 27... Qf6 {due to the f3-f4 advance, either immediately, or after}
28. Rde1 Ra8 29. f4) 28. Rde1 Ra8 {A tricky move that lures the white rook
away from home.} 29. Ra1 Raf8 $1 ({Against} 29... Rfa7 {White planned} 30. Rxa7
Rxa7 31. Nc1) 30. Ra6 {And Carlsen embraces the provocation, hoping to cause
crisis rather than waiting patiently.} (30. Rae1 {in hindsight was objectively
better.}) 30... e4 {This is what White expected and wanted to provoke.} ({
However, it turns out that} 30... Bh3 $3 {was tremendously strong $1 The two
lines that Carlsen suggested after the game could have been refuted
spectacularly. One runs} 31. Rf2 {To which} ({The really beautiful line starts
after} 31. Be1 {to which Carlsen quoted} Qg5 ({However, here is the hidden and
exceptional} 31... Rxf3 $3 32. gxf3 Rxf3 33. Qg2 Qg4 $3 {and Black wins $1})
32. Qd2 {with a chance to defend.}) ({Finally, the best line according to the
computer} 31. Qd1 {also does not bring White relief due to} Bxg2 $1 32. Kxg2
Rxf3 33. Rxf3 Qg4+ 34. Kf2 Nh4 35. Rxf8 Qxd1 36. Ra7 Qxb3 37. Rff7 Nf5 38. Rxf5
Qxd3 39. Rxh5+ Kg8 40. Rxe5 Qxd2+ {and Black should be winning again.}) 31...
Bxg2 32. Rxg2 Nf4 $1 {with the threat of Nf4-h3+ $1 promises Black a huge
attack, as} 33. Bxf4 Qe1#) 31. Nxd4 $1 ({Karjakin was hoping for} 31. fxe4 Bh3
$3 32. Rxf7 Rxf7 {and the mating threats force major material losses for White.
}) 31... exf3 32. Nxf3 Bh3 33. Rf2 $1 {A very cool move $1 \"I had seen that
this does not lose.\" (Carlsen)} Rxf3 34. gxf3 Rf5 {Black starts to lose the
thread.} ({White was not afraid of} 34... Ne5 35. d4+ Bf5 36. Qc3 Nd3 37. Rg2 {
\"It seems like I am protecting everything and that the knight is poorly
placed on d3.\" (Carlsen)}) ({However Karjakin could have still forced a draw
with} 34... Bg4 $1 35. Bg5 Qxg5 36. fxg4 Qxg4+ 37. Kh1 Rxf2 38. Qxf2 Qd1+) 35.
d4 Qxd4 36. Ra3 {\"I am kind of consolidating.\" (Carlsen) The problem was
that White was down to a few minutes on the clock.} Rf7 37. Re3 ({Stronger was
to offer the queen swap at once:} 37. Qd3 $1 Qh4 38. Qe4) 37... Bf5 38. Qc3 Qd8
39. Re1 Rd7 40. Qe3 Rd4 {Now things would be so much easier for White $1} ({
After} 40... Re7 {\"I was going to repeat once\"} 41. Qc3 {\"And then, who
knows...\" (Carlsen)}) 41. Qg5 {\"I could not get the queens off any quicker.
I can never lose.\" (Carlsen)} Qxg5+ 42. Bxg5 Rxc4 43. Rb2 b5 ({\"A massive
conceptual mistake\" not to trade his knight for the bishop (Carlsen)} 43...
Nf4 44. Bxf4 Rxf4 45. Kf2 h4 {Then the world champion quoted Botvinnik who
said that a bishop defended by a pawn is as strong as rook and suggested that
Black should hold this.}) 44. Kf2 c5 {The frustrated Karjakin quickly loses
the game.} (44... h4 $5 {was possibly still the move.}) 45. bxc5 Rxc5 46. Rc1
$1 Rd5 47. Rd2 $1 {Once that the rooks are traded it is over according to the
world champion.} Rxd2+ 48. Bxd2 Ne5 ({Or} 48... Nf8 49. Rc7 Nd7 50. Rb7 {
when Carlsen quoted one of the games between Kasparov and Karpov where the
former managed to win an identical endgame.}) 49. Rc7 b4 50. Rb7 Be6 {A
blunder, but there was no way out anyway.} 51. Re7 Nd3+ 52. Ke3 Bc4 53. Kd4 (
53. Kd4 Bb5 54. Rb7 Bc6 55. Rb6) 1-0
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.16"]
[Round "18"]
[White "Rapport, Richard"]
[Black "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B06"]
[WhiteElo "2760"]
[BlackElo "2792"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "98"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. Nf3 d5 2. d3 g6 3. Nbd2 Bg7 4. e4 Nc6 (4... e5 5. exd5 Qxd5 6. g3 Nc6 7. Bg2
Nge7 8. O-O O-O 9. Re1 Qd8 10. Nc4 f6 11. b3 Be6 {Grischuk,A (2777)-Melkumyan,
H (2668) Moscow 2019}) 5. exd5 Qxd5 6. g3 $146 (6. c4 Qd8 7. Be2 Nf6 8. O-O O-O
9. Rb1 Nb4 10. Qb3 c5 11. Ne4 Nxe4 12. dxe4 Nc6 13. Be3 b6 {Fries Nielsen,J
(2381)-Karpatchev,A (2484) Lueneburg 2013}) 6... Nf6 7. Bg2 Qe6+ 8. Kf1 O-O 9.
Nc4 Qd7 10. Bd2 Qd8 11. Bc3 Be6 12. Qe2 Re8 13. Re1 Qc8 14. h4 h5 15. Ng5 Bg4
16. Qd2 Qd7 $2 17. Ne3 $2 ({Both players are missing the tactic} 17. Nxf7 $1 {
and if Black takes, 18.Bxc6 and 19.Ne5+ are next.}) 17... Rad8 18. b4 Nd4 19.
Bxd4 Qxd4 20. Bxb7 Bh6 21. Nxg4 Nxg4 22. Qf4 Qxf4 23. gxf4 e6 24. Bc6 Rf8 25.
b5 (25. Re4 {first makes sense here to prevent 25...Rd4.}) 25... Rd4 $1 26. Re4
Rfd8 27. Nf3 ({Nepomniachtchi wasn't worried about} 27. Ke2 {because of} Nf6 $1
28. Rxd4 Rxd4 {and White needs a lot of (pawn) moves before he can create real
threats on the queenside.}) 27... Rxe4 28. Bxe4 Bxf4 29. Ke2 Nf6 30. a4 Kf8 31.
Ra1 Ke7 32. a5 Kd6 33. Nd4 $6 (33. Ra4 $1 {was interesting. After missing this
move, Rapport won't get another chance for more than half a point.}) 33... Nxe4
(33... Be5 $5) 34. dxe4 Kc5 35. Nc6 Rd2+ 36. Kf3 Kxb5 37. Nxa7+ Ka6 38. Nc6 Bd6
39. c3 $6 ({Objectively speaking, White should take the draw here but that
doesn't make sense in armageddon:} 39. Nb8+ Ka7 40. Nc6+) 39... Rd3+ 40. Kg2
Rxc3 41. Nd8 f5 42. e5 Bxe5 43. Re1 Bd4 44. Rxe6+ Kb5 45. a6 Rc2 46. Kf1 Rxf2+
47. Ke1 Ra2 48. Rxg6 Rxa6 49. Rg5 Kc4 0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.16"]
[Round "17"]
[White "Tari, Aryan"]
[Black "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B90"]
[WhiteElo "2642"]
[BlackElo "2754"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "100"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. a4 $5 e5 7. Nf3 h6 (7...
Be7 8. Bg5 Be6 9. Bxf6 Bxf6 10. Nd5 Nc6 11. Bc4 Rc8 12. c3 Ne7 13. Ba2 Bxd5 14.
Bxd5 Nxd5 15. Qxd5 Qb6 {Kramnik,V (2753)-Grischuk,A (2776) Online 2021}) 8. Nd2
Be6 9. Nc4 Be7 10. Nd5 $146 (10. Ne3 Nc6 11. g3 Nd4 12. Bg2 Qd7 13. O-O O-O 14.
Ne2 Nxe2+ 15. Qxe2 b5 16. axb5 axb5 17. Bd2 Ra4 {Lagno,K (2546)-Bodnaruk,A
(2443) Chess.com 2021}) 10... Nxd5 ({Firouzja didn't like White's long-term
compensation after} 10... Nxe4 11. Nxe7 (11. Ncb6 Bxd5) 11... Kxe7 12. Be2 Qc7
13. Ne3) 11. exd5 Bf5 {With the last two moves, we have transposed to a line
from the Sveshnikov. \"I think it's a worse version for me,\" said Firouzja.
\"I don't know if my bishop on f5 is good or bad.\"} ({After} 11... Bc8 12. a5
Nd7 13. Be2 O-O 14. O-O {Black's pawn on h6 looks odd (Firouzja).}) 12. a5 Nd7
13. Be2 O-O 14. O-O Qc7 {\"Here White is definitely better. His knight is very
strong. But it's always complicated; I am trying to push ...f5.\" (Firouzja)}
15. Be3 Bh7 16. Ra3 Rac8 {Firouzja thought White's next two moves were too
slow.} ({Firouzja wanted to avoid the knight trade} 16... f5 17. Nb6) 17. Kh1 (
{After} 17. c3 f5 18. Nb6 Nxb6 19. Bxb6 Qd7 20. Qa4 {it's about equal
(Firouzja) .}) 17... f5 18. f4 Bf6 {Here Black is OK.} 19. b4 Rce8 20. Qd2 Re7
21. fxe5 Nxe5 22. Nb6 $6 {\"Probably losing.\" (Firouzja) It's not that bad,
but definitely a step in the wrong direction.} (22. Nxe5 {was still fine for
White.}) 22... Ng4 23. Bf4 $2 {But this is a bigger error. Black will get a
strong attack and White's knight is now seriously misplaced.} ({Still quite
playable was} 23. h3 $1 Nxe3 24. Rxe3 Bg5 (24... Rfe8 25. Re6 $5) 25. Rxe7 Qxe7
26. Qd1 {and the engine thinks it's equal.}) 23... Rfe8 24. Bf3 (24. Bd3) 24...
g5 25. Bxg4 fxg4 26. Be3 Rf7 {Simply protecting the bishop, but Black's
threats are deadly.} 27. c4 Bb2 $1 28. Rxf7 Qxf7 29. Qxb2 Qf1+ 30. Bg1 Re2 {
Winning the queen and the game.} 31. Qxe2 Qxe2 32. Re3 Qc2 33. c5 Be4 34. Rg3
dxc5 35. d6 cxb4 36. d7 Qd2 37. Rxg4 Bc6 38. Bd4 Bxd7 39. Nxd7 b3 40. h3 b2 41.
Bxb2 Qxb2 42. Kh2 Qc3 43. Rg3 Qxa5 44. Nf6+ Kf7 45. Ng4 Kg7 46. Rd3 Qc7+ 47.
Kh1 a5 48. Ne3 a4 49. Nf5+ Kg6 50. g4 Qc1+ 0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.17"]
[Round "10.1"]
[White "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Black "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "C54"]
[WhiteElo "2792"]
[BlackElo "2855"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "65"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Russia"]
[BlackTeam "Norway"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "RUS"]
[BlackTeamCountry "NOR"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. c3 Nf6 5. d4 exd4 6. e5 d5 7. Bb5 Ne4 8. cxd4
Bb6 9. Nc3 O-O 10. Be3 Bg4 11. h3 (11. Qc2 Nxc3 12. bxc3 f6 13. Bxc6 bxc6 14.
exf6 Qxf6 15. Ne5 Bf5 16. Qa4 c5 17. O-O cxd4 18. cxd4 c5 {Caruana,F (2806)
-Svidler,P (2714) Saint Louis 2021}) 11... Bh5 12. Qc2 Nxc3 13. bxc3 f6 14.
exf6 Qxf6 15. Be2 Na5 16. O-O Bxf3 17. Bxf3 c6 18. Rae1 Nc4 19. Bc1 Qg6 20. Qd1
$146 (20. Qxg6 hxg6 21. Re7 Rf7 22. Re2 Ba5 23. Rc2 Re8 24. Be2 Rfe7 25. Bd3
Kf7 {So,W (2772)-Carlsen,M (2847) Online 2021}) 20... Rae8 (20... Ba5 21. Bh5
Qb1 22. Qg4 Qf5 {Carlsen}) 21. Rxe8 Qxe8 22. Be2 Qe6 {The next move by Nepo
was surprising to Carlsen, who still thought it could be a good move.} 23. Bxc4
$5 ({Polgar preferred} 23. Bd3 {when Carlsen planned} Bc7) 23... dxc4 24. Re1
Qf7 25. Qe2 Ba5 26. Qe3 {Black still has to play accurately, according to
Carlsen.} h6 27. Ba3 Rd8 28. h4 Kh7 (28... Bc7 {allows} 29. Qe4 {followed by
30.Re3 and 31.g3 \"grabbing some squares\" (Carlsen).}) 29. Re2 Qf5 30. Qc1 {
\"Very clever, but I don't think it's very good.\" (Carlsen)} Rd5 $1 {
Nepomniachtchi had missed this move, which might threaten 31...Rb5.} 31. f3 {
Carlsen had missed this one and semi-panicked.} b5 ({Afterward, Carlsen
realized that thanks to his central control his king is safe and he could have
gone} 31... h5 {keeping options for the rook to go to b5 or a5.}) 32. Re4 Bb6
33. Be7 ({For a moment Carlsen considered to play on and showed one funny line:
} 33. Be7 Re5 34. Qe3 Rxe4 35. Qxe4 Qxe4 36. fxe4 a5 37. a3 b4 38. axb4 a4 39.
b5 c5) 1/2-1/2
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.17"]
[Round "10.2"]
[White "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"]
[Black "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "C28"]
[WhiteElo "2792"]
[BlackElo "2855"]
[Annotator "Peter,Doggers"]
[PlyCount "112"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Russia"]
[BlackTeam "Norway"]
[WhiteTeamCountry "RUS"]
[BlackTeamCountry "NOR"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. d3 Na5 5. Bb3 Nxb3 6. axb3 d5 7. exd5 Nxd5 8.
Qh5 (8. Nf3 Nxc3 9. bxc3 Bd6 10. O-O O-O 11. h3 a5 12. Re1 Re8 13. Ba3 b6 14.
Bxd6 Qxd6 {Szabo,M (2389)-Stevic,H (2772) Chess.com 2020}) 8... Nb4 9. Qxe5+
Be7 10. Qe2 O-O 11. Be3 Re8 12. Nf3 a5 $146 (12... Bg4 13. O-O-O a5 14. h3 Bd7
15. Ne5 Be6 16. f4 f6 17. Nc4 Nd5 {Brochet,P (2409)-Salimova,$146 (2250)
Bayonne 2018}) 13. h3 b6 14. O-O Bb7 15. Rac1 Bf6 16. d4 $2 Qd7 $2 ({Carlsen's
comment on} 16... Ba6 {\"OK. Yeah. Didn't see it. I was not even seeing
tactics at all in this game. I was tired.\"}) 17. Rfd1 Rad8 18. Qb5 Qc8 19. Qh5
h6 20. Qg4 Qxg4 21. hxg4 Rd7 22. Rd2 g5 23. Nd1 Rdd8 24. c3 Nd5 25. Nh2 Kg7 26.
Nf1 Kg6 27. f3 h5 28. gxh5+ Kxh5 29. Bf2 Kg6 30. Nde3 Be7 31. Nxd5 Bxd5 32. c4
Be6 33. d5 Bb4 34. Rdd1 Bd7 35. Ne3 (35. c5 $5) 35... f5 36. Nc2 Bd6 37. Nd4 g4
38. g3 gxf3 39. Nxf3 Re2 40. Rd2 Rxd2 41. Nxd2 Re8 42. Rd1 f4 43. gxf4 Bxf4 44.
Nf3 Re2 45. Bd4 Bg4 46. Rf1 Kf5 47. d6 $6 cxd6 $6 ({Winning was} 47... Ke4 $1
48. dxc7 Bxf3 $1) 48. Bxb6 Bxf3 49. Rxf3 Rxb2 50. Bd4 Rb1+ 51. Kf2 Ke4 52. Bg7
$2 {Now Black even wins.} (52. Ke2) 52... Rh1 53. Rc3 Rh2+ 54. Kf1 Be3 55. c5
dxc5 56. Rc4+ Kf3 0-1
[Event "Stavanger"]
[Site "Stavanger"]
[Date "2021.09.17"]
[Round "10.1"]
[White "Firouzja, Alireza"]
[Black "Rapport, Richard"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "B30"]
[WhiteElo "2754"]
[BlackElo "2760"]
[Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"]
[PlyCount "63"]
[EventDate "2021.??.??"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. Nc3 Nd4 5. e5 Nxb5 6. Nxb5 Nd5 7. O-O {
A new trend in the line.} ({This game might have inspired White to dig deeper
into it:} 7. Ng5 {Thanks to this idea by the great analyst Igor Zaitsev the
whole line was brought into the spotlight in the 1980s.} f6 8. Ne4 f5 9. Nbc3
Nxc3 10. Nxc3 d6 11. O-O dxe5 12. Qe2 e6 13. Qxe5 Qd6 14. Qe2 Be7 15. b3 O-O
16. Bb2 Bd7 17. Rae1 {and White later won in Caruana,F (2819) -Carlsen,M (2875)
Stavanger 2019}) 7... a6 8. c4 {Both sides are fiercely fighting for the
initiative; none of them wants to retreat first.} ({There is nothing wrong with
} 8. Nc3 {Which was tested in a recent top-GM game} Nc7 9. d4 cxd4 10. Nxd4 g6
11. Re1 Bg7 12. Bf4 O-O 13. Qd2 {also looked good for White in Van Foreest,J
(2685)-Le,T (2857) Chess.com 2018}) 8... Nb4 9. Nc3 d6 {In hindsight, the
fianchettoe might have been a safer idea.} ({As in this game:} 9... g6 10. d4
cxd4 11. Nd5 Nxd5 12. cxd5 Bg7 13. d6 exd6 14. Bg5 Qa5 15. exd6 O-O 16. Be7 Re8
17. Qb3 Qf5 18. Rad1 b5 {when the black queenside pieces slowly came back into
the game in Kalezic,B (2448)-Skliarov,V (2376) Chess.com 2020}) 10. d4 cxd4 {
Black is underdeveloped, no question about that. But how to punish him $2} ({As
} 10... dxe5 11. d5 $1 {leaves no retreat squares to the black knight.}) 11.
Qxd4 $1 $146 {Firouzja revealed that this was an over-the-board inspiration.} (
{White crushed his opponent in an earlier game, after} 11. Qa4+ Nc6 12. Nd5
dxe5 13. Nxe5 Bd7 $2 ({However, there is a better move instead:} 13... b5 $1
14. Nxc6 bxa4 15. Nxd8 Kxd8 {which solves Black's problems at once.}) 14. Nxd7
{And} Kxd7 {was a sad necessity when} 15. c5 {left White with a huge attack
practically for nothing in Whitehead,P-Rohde,M (2425) Memphis 1978}) 11... Nc2
{Again, there is no way back, which is why Rapport picks up the rook quite
quickly.} ({After} 11... dxe5 {White is better both in the middlegame after}
12. Qxe5 ({As well as in the endgame:} 12. Qxd8+ Kxd8 13. Nxe5)) 12. Qe4 Nxa1
13. Bf4 {\"There is no way I could be worse here.\" (Firouzja)} Be6 ({The
tricky} 13... Nc2 $5 {which aims to divert the queen from the center can be
met besides with the obvious capture} 14. Qxc2 ({Also with a far more
convincing attacking idea:} 14. Rd1 $1 Nb4 15. exd6 {aiming to disrupt Black's
development:} e6 16. c5 Nc6 17. Nd5 $1)) 14. Rxa1 Rc8 15. Nd5 {Probably not
the most optimal according to Firouzja.} ({Indeed} 15. b3 $5 {looks more
confident, although nothing is clear after} dxe5 16. Rd1 Qb6 17. Bxe5 f6) 15...
dxe5 16. Nxe5 f6 {Played after a heavy think. Rapport had a lot to choose from,
and the choice was not easy at all.} ({To start with, the fianchettoe} 16... g6
$5 {deserved very serious investigation. After} 17. Rd1 Bg7 18. Bg5 f6 {
is more or less forced and then the line continues} 19. Nxf6+ exf6 20. Rxd8+
Rxd8 21. Nd3 Kf7 22. Qxb7+ Rd7 23. Qf3 {Perhaps Black calculated this far,
thought he would not have enough, but there is a little tactic at the end:}
Rxd3 24. Qxd3 fxg5 {when White should force a draw with} 25. Qf3+ Bf6 26. Qb7+
Be7 27. Qf3+) ({There was also Polgar's recommendation to liquidate one of the
annoying knights with} 16... Rxc4 $1 17. Qxc4 Qxd5 {while sharply activating
the queen. Then} 18. Qc2 {\"I thought this was still very dangerous for him.\"
(Firouzja) But the machine disagrees and likes Black after} f6 19. Rd1 Qxa2)
17. Nf3 Bxd5 ({The defence} 17... Kf7 18. Rd1 Qd7 {is not human.}) 18. cxd5 Rc5
19. d6 $1 {\"I think he is in big trouble here.\" (Firouzja) A very smart move,
which White carefully calculated.} ({After} 19. Rd1 e5 $1 {Black looks in a
good shape.}) 19... Qd7 ({The problem for Rapport is that here} 19... e5 {
is not working due to something that Firouzja had seen in advance:} 20. b4 $3 {
Removing the rook from the fifth rank.} Rc6 {And then comes the decisive
removal of the guards:} (20... Rb5 21. a4 {changes nothing.}) 21. Nxe5 $1 fxe5
22. Qxe5+ Kf7 ({Nothing helps} 22... Kd7 23. Qf5+ Ke8 24. Re1+) ({Nor does}
22... Be7 23. dxe7 Qxe7 24. Qb8+ {save Black.}) 23. Qd5+ Kg6 24. g4 $3 {
with unstoppable mate.}) 20. b4 $1 {The same move is still very strong.} Rc6 ({
Perhaps more resilient was} 20... Rc8 {although White obviously enjoyed his
position greatly after} 21. Re1 Kf7 22. h4 e6 23. Rd1 {\"He cannot go out.\"
(Firouzja)} g6 24. h5) 21. Re1 ({After} 21. Nd4 {Black can defend still with}
e5 22. Nxc6 Qxc6 23. d7+ Kxd7 24. Qf5+ Qe6) 21... Kf7 {Now Black is in a huge
trouble, even according to the machine.} ({But to play something like} 21... e5
22. Bxe5 ({Apparently there is not more than an initiative enough for the draw
in the lines after} 22. Nxe5 fxe5 23. Qxe5+ Kd8 24. Qa5+ Kc8 25. b5 Rc5 26. Qb6
Qxb5 27. d7+ Qxd7 28. Qa7 Kd8 29. Qb6+) 22... Kd8 $1 {one needs to have some
silicon implanted in the brain $1 It still very unclear, but defendable for
Black, says the comp.}) 22. Nd4 e5 ({Or} 22... Rxd6 23. Bxd6 Qxd6 24. Ne6 {
when Black is paralyzed.}) ({But maybe Black should have tried} 22... exd6 23.
Qd5+ Kg6 24. Nxc6 bxc6 25. Qd3+) 23. Qd5+ {The neatest move.} ({Although the
move} 23. Bxe5 $1 {would have likely transposed into the game after} fxe5 24.
Qd5+ Kg6 ({But here White also needs to calculate the line} 24... Ke8 25. Qxe5+
Kd8 26. Nxc6+ Qxc6 27. d7 $1 {with a winning attack.}) 25. Nf3 $3) 23... Kg6 ({
Now} 23... Ke8 24. Nxc6 bxc6 25. Qc4 Qxd6 26. Be3 {is hopeless for Black.}) 24.
Bxe5 $3 {Everything falls apart $1} Rxd6 ({Rapport missed from afar the
brilliant retreat} 24... fxe5 25. Nf3 $3) 25. Bxd6 Bxd6 (25... Qxd6 26. Qe4+
Kf7 27. Qe8+ Kg8 28. Nf5 {is not playable at all.}) 26. Qe4+ Kf7 27. Qd5+ Kg6
28. g3 $1 {Stopping the threat of a discovered attack. Now the pin decides.} h6
({Or} 28... Rd8 29. Ne6 Re8 30. Nf4+) 29. Rd1 Re8 30. Nf3 Re6 31. Nh4+ Kh7 32.
Qd3+ ({Avoiding the last micro-chance} 32. Nf5 $2 Re5 {and suddenly it is a
draw.}) 1-0