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Tata Steel Group A Tournament

Hikaru Nakamura9/13(+6 -1 =6)[games]
Viswanathan Anand8.5/13(+4 -0 =9)[games]
Magnus Carlsen8/13(+5 -2 =6)[games]
Levon Aronian8/13(+3 -0 =10)[games]
Vladimir Kramnik7.5/13(+3 -1 =9)[games]
Maxime Vachier-Lagrave7.5/13(+3 -1 =9)[games]
Anish Giri6.5/13(+2 -2 =9)[games]
Ruslan Ponomariov6.5/13(+2 -2 =9)[games]
Ian Nepomniachtchi6/13(+3 -4 =6)[games]
Wang Hao6/13(+3 -4 =6)[games]
Alexander Grischuk4.5/13(+1 -5 =7)[games]
Erwin L'Ami4.5/13(+0 -4 =9)[games]
Jan Smeets4.5/13(+2 -6 =5)[games]
Alexey Shirov4/13(+1 -6 =6)[games]
* Chess Event Description
Tata Steel Group A (2011)

Played in Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands 15-30 January 2011. Crosstable ( :

Elo 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 1 Nakamura 2751 * 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 9 2 Anand 2810 * 1 1 1 1 8 3 Carlsen 2814 1 * 1 0 0 1 1 1 8 4 Aronian 2805 * 1 1 1 8 5 Kramnik 2784 0 * 1 1 1 7 6 Vachier-Lagrave 2715 0 * 1 1 1 7 7 Giri 2686 1 0 * 0 1 6 8 Ponomariov 2744 0 * 0 1 1 6 9 Nepomniachtchi 2733 0 1 0 0 1 * 1 0 6 10 Wang Hao 2731 0 0 0 1 0 * 1 1 6 11 Grischuk 2773 0 0 0 0 * 1 0 4 12 L'Ami 2628 0 0 0 0 * 4 13 Smeets 2662 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 * 1 4 14 Shirov 2722 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 * 4

Previous edition: Corus Group A (2010). Next: Tata Steel Group A (2012). See also Tata Steel Group B (2011) and Tata Steel Group C (2011).

 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 91  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. I Nepomniachtchi vs Kramnik ½-½362011Tata Steel Group AC45 Scotch Game
2. M Vachier-Lagrave vs Wang Hao ½-½372011Tata Steel Group AD18 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Dutch
3. J Smeets vs Shirov 1-0252011Tata Steel Group AC78 Ruy Lopez
4. L'Ami vs A Giri ½-½582011Tata Steel Group AD16 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
5. Carlsen vs Aronian ½-½282011Tata Steel Group AC45 Scotch Game
6. Nakamura vs Grischuk 1-0422011Tata Steel Group AD38 Queen's Gambit Declined, Ragozin Variation
7. Ponomariov vs Anand 0-1522011Tata Steel Group AB92 Sicilian, Najdorf, Opocensky Variation
8. A Giri vs J Smeets ½-½382011Tata Steel Group AD44 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
9. Wang Hao vs I Nepomniachtchi 0-1802011Tata Steel Group AD70 Neo-Grunfeld Defense
10. Ponomariov vs L'Ami ½-½212011Tata Steel Group AE59 Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3, Main line
11. Grischuk vs M Vachier-Lagrave ½-½272011Tata Steel Group AB30 Sicilian
12. Shirov vs Carlsen ½-½282011Tata Steel Group AC45 Scotch Game
13. Anand vs Kramnik ½-½232011Tata Steel Group AE32 Nimzo-Indian, Classical
14. Aronian vs Nakamura ½-½172011Tata Steel Group AA89 Dutch, Leningrad, Main Variation with Nc6
15. L'Ami vs Anand ½-½312011Tata Steel Group AE11 Bogo-Indian Defense
16. I Nepomniachtchi vs Grischuk ½-½232011Tata Steel Group AB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
17. M Vachier-Lagrave vs Aronian ½-½212011Tata Steel Group AD39 Queen's Gambit Declined, Ragozin, Vienna Variation
18. Kramnik vs Wang Hao ½-½462011Tata Steel Group AE25 Nimzo-Indian, Samisch
19. Carlsen vs A Giri 0-1222011Tata Steel Group AD71 Neo-Grunfeld
20. Nakamura vs Shirov 1-0932011Tata Steel Group AC78 Ruy Lopez
21. J Smeets vs Ponomariov 0-1402011Tata Steel Group AC18 French, Winawer
22. Shirov vs M Vachier-Lagrave 0-1322011Tata Steel Group AD86 Grunfeld, Exchange
23. Anand vs Wang Hao 1-0332011Tata Steel Group AE25 Nimzo-Indian, Samisch
24. L'Ami vs J Smeets ½-½272011Tata Steel Group AD12 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
25. Grischuk vs Kramnik ½-½342011Tata Steel Group AA09 Reti Opening
 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 91  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 120 OF 121 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jan-31-11  messachess: <plang> I think <acirce> was being ironic.
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: I usually need a few drinks to appreciate irony.
Jan-31-11  Shams: <plang><Blunderdome><messachess>

I don't think <acirce> is being ironic, or quibbling or any such thing. I take his comment at face value.

Premium Chessgames Member
  acirce: <acirce is just quibbling that there was no top player named Fisher (because the correct spelling is Fischer).>

What are you talking about? Nonsense.

I don't agree with <plang>'s example. Palma de Mallorca 1970 wasn't close in strength or "remarkableness" to this year's Wijk aan Zee. Wijk aan Zee had all the four top rated players at a time when everyone has rightly been talking about the "big 5" and the field was extremely strong below that as well. One of those four was the reigning World Champion, one was the last World Champion before the current, one was the Wunderkind of Wunderkinds. Palma didn't have the World Champion (Spassky), it didn't have the then former World Champion (Petrosian), it didn't have Korchnoi, and the field had A LOT weaker bottom half. Still, it was remarkable enough in itself.

Jan-31-11  Riverbeast: Mig Greengard mentioned Seirawan's win at Haninge in 1990 as a comparable win of a strong round robin by an American (outside of Fischer)

But Seirawan won that one over Karpov (he beat Karpov in their individual game) and Ehlvest, who tied for 2nd...Kasparov, the WC, wasn't in it

The crosstable of Haninge 1990 is not easily available online.... But luckily I happen to have informant #49 from 1990, which has that crosstable printed in the results section in the back

Haninge was Category XIV, average rating 2580, which was pretty high category for the time, but perhaps not 'supertournament' category in terms of average rating

Seirawan finished +6 (six wins, five draws, no losses)....He beat Karpov, Sax, Karlsson, Van der Wiel, Ftacnik, and Wojtkiewicz.....Drew Ehlvest, Polugayevsky, Ulf Andersson, Hellers, and Hector

He was a point ahead of Karpov and Ehlvest who scored 7.5-3.5

Polugayevsky was 4th with 6.5, Andersson was 5th with 6

A strong field, but this one at Tata looks more impressive to me

Jan-31-11  Riverbeast: Since I've been digging into Christiansen's old Linares results, it looks like his tournament in 1981 was even stronger than Seirawan's at Haninge

The young Christiansen tied for first with Karpov, the reigning WC, at +5...But he lost to Karpov in their individual game and Karpov was declared winner on tiebreaks

They were ahead of Larsen, Ribli, Spassky, Kavalek, Portisch, Ljubojevic, Gligoric, Quinteros, Bellon Lopez, and Garcia Gonzalez!

Jan-31-11  Everett: I really appreciate Seirawan as a player and person, but I must consider him behind Fischer, Fine, Reshevsky, Pillsbury, Marshall and now Nakamura as far as American greats. According to a few sources like chessmetrics and Elo ratings, he was never higher than top 15 or so.

Still, out of Christiansen, Benjamin, etc., I would rank him the top in that generation.

Jan-31-11  Riverbeast: <Everett> You forgot to mention Morphyus :-)
Jan-31-11  fixingguru: <Riverbeast: Mig Greengard mentioned Seirawan's win at Haninge in 1990 as a comparable win of a strong round robin by an American (outside of Fischer)>

comparable strong field!? is that some sort of a joke or what? Haninge 1990 didn't have a especially strong field. Of those who played there Ehlvest seems to be the strongest player besides Karpov. Now in January 1990 Elhvest was rated 2620 points.

Here are some players who were rated higher than him on that list but didn't participate at Haninge:

Timman 2680
Ivanchuk 2665
Salov 2645
Gurevich 2645
Beliavsky 2640
Short 2635
Korchnoi 2625

My conclusion is Haninge 1990 doesn't even come close to Tata 2011.

Jan-31-11  sevenseaman: Isn't Anand fed up with his lack-lustre tournament performance and missed wins against lower ranked players?

The way he tried for a win against Anish Giri in the penultimate round was much more praiseworthy than his effort against, L'Ami, MVL, Grischuk and Nepomniatchi et al.

Couldn't he have put in more effort there! Instead he kept clinging to 2nd position as though he had no ambition to win the event.

I think a Kramnik like malaise has overtaken him. He just does not seem to be bothered.

Jan-31-11  AgentRgent: <metatron2: It wasn't the US who made Kamsky the chess player that he is..> As a product of Soviet Chess, arising from the Cold War, there can be only one person responsible...

Ronald Reagan of course!

Jan-31-11  crazybird: <sevenseaman: Isn't Anand fed up with his lack-lustre tournament performance and missed wins against lower ranked players?>

2844 TPR...+4 in category 20 and unbeaten in each of the past 3 editions.. is lackluster. Dude, what are you smoking?

Jan-31-11  vanytchouck: If it's about the great Naka's achievement in this tournament, there absolutly no dispute.

But if it's about history, a closer look must be taken.

The club of the + 2800 looks really scary but ...

* Aronian hasn't won (sole first(*) ahead of likes of Anand, Carlsen, Kramnik and Topalov) a single super-tournament since Linares ... 2006 !!

* Anand hasn't won a super-tournament since Linares 2008;

Of course these two players are, really, really great but in term of "winner of a super tournament", even if they are indeed high favourite, they are not the best in term of results as tournaments winner lately.

The Naka's + 5 score is impressive but still :

4 wins out of 6 are over the " bottom 4 ", one of the weakiest of the last 5 years in WAZ.

Don't misunderstand me, this can't be used to diminish Hikaru's win as all the other favourites have either met the "bottom 4".

He's not undefeated and hasn't performed well against the "big four" of the tournament.

So even if the field is not (even relatively) as "strong" as the field of WAZ 2011, being ahead of Karpov in 1990 (when the #1 and #2 were just on another planet) and beating him is not that far in term of achievement.

(*) first tie for WAZ 2008 and Tal Memorial 2010.

Jan-31-11  sevenseaman: <crazybird> nearly 200 plus difference in TPR and 4 out of 4 insipid draws? What has he got to show for being a higher ranked player?

He took all the risks against only Giri (where he could well have lost). Why not against the four weaker opponents? At least couple of them merely made up the numbers.

My view is both Vishy and Kramnik are only trying to guard their stature and not enhance it, passing up opportunities in a kind of stupor. Not at all like Naka and Carlsen who are always pushing themselves to the brink.

Jan-31-11  sevenseaman: Of his 4 wins I am impressed with only the one against Wang Hao wherein he sacs a N to repair his pawn structure quite daringly.
Jan-31-11  NGambit: <sevenseaman: Isn't Anand fed up with his lack-lustre tournament performance and missed wins against lower ranked players?>

If you see his interview after Game 13, you could see that he in fact was very disappointed at not having won. But, the fact is a +4 (TRP 2844!) in such a strong field is not bad at all! A +4 performance has won the tournament 7(!!!) times in last 8 years at Wijk ann Zee with the exception of year 2006 when he himself scored a +5.

Therefore, your <He just does not seem to be bothered.> is definitely uncalled for.

Feb-01-11  Udayan Chawdhary: Hello, I am from India, the land of Anand. I wish to say that when one is young like Carsen and Nakamura, one tends to be agressive and flamboyant without a care in the world. When a man approaches 40 and thereafter, one becomes conservative in his approach, as is happening with Anand. It's a natural phenomenon.
Feb-01-11  anandrulez: Lol @ Land of Anand :) Its a new usage . What Udayan mentioned is correct , exuberance of youth and maturity of a wise player .
Feb-01-11  theagenbiteofinwit: <Isn't Anand fed up with his lack-lustre tournament performance and missed wins against lower ranked players?>

I'm sure he goes home after every tournament, cries, then wipes his tears with his championship wreath.

Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: <I'm sure he goes home after every tournament, cries, then wipes his tears with his championship wreath.>


Feb-01-11  SetNoEscapeOn: Or the Euros.
Feb-02-11  Texas Skybear: Udayan. Are you saying one has to be conservative in his approach to be a world champ?

I haven't seen a teenager reach the top either.

Feb-02-11  DAVI DE RAFE: texas skybear, u have to be agressive to become world champion. once u reach there, be conservative and assertive.thats wat anand done.
Feb-02-11  Udayan Chawdhary: Real World champs in any field have a healthy blend of being aggressive and being conservative. Anand is one of them. In India, we have litle sports icons as compared to other countries. Hence being an Indian, it is quite natural to be proud of Anand's accomplishments. Garry Kasparov who is universally accepted as the greatest of them all had a healthy blend of both. Even his agression had a conservatism blend and not recklesness as is the case with other youth icons. Your comments please.
Feb-02-11  iamsheaf: If any of you have noticed. Anand doesn't usually "over-perform" or "under-perform" by a huge margin. I don't remember Anand performing at 2900+ in a very long time. Perhaps in Mexico 2007 he had that kind of performance. On the other hand Anand very rarely performs at 2700 level either. I can think of only 3 occassions in last 14 years when he did quite bad. 2001 dortmund, 2006 Olympiad and Bilbao 2008. Otherwise his performance is usually consistent, between 2760 to 2840 range..
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