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Peter Leko vs Vladimir Kramnik
Belgrade Investbank (1995), Belgrade SRB, rd 8, Nov-23
Sicilian Defense: Richter-Rauzer. Classical Variation (B64)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-16-03  Shadout Mapes: In light of the upcoming match, I looked at these guys games, and this is the most interesting. Leko starts an attack with 19.Nf6+ (19...gxf6 20.Qxh6; 19...Bxf6 20.Qe4 g6 21.exf6 and the pawn can be used for the attack.) and he keeps Kramnik under pressure for the duration of the game. Leko wins a few pawns, advances his a pawn, before catching Kramnik in a mating attack.
Aug-16-03  Ashley: In view of Leko's growing strength and his record against Kramnik, he must be given good chances if the match ever happens.
Aug-17-03  Kenneth Sterling: I agree that young Leko is a legitimate challenger, but Kramnik has a style and strength that makes it very difficult to take him in a set match. In my day Reshevsky was similar.
Aug-17-03  uglybird: Any opening variation that includes a move like 9...h6, is supect in my book. Steinitz's law "do not move pawns in front of your castled position", should not be readily ignored.
Oct-08-04  PivotalAnorak: 25. Nf6 ! 25... Bxg2?? 26. Ne8+! Rxe8 27. Qxf7#
Dec-15-05  Conde de Montecristo: Complete domination of Leko, and please don not play Sicilians Kramnik, sicilian is not for you!!!
Premium Chessgames Member
  acirce: A 16-year old Leko shows Kramnik (ranked 5th in the world at that point, but only a couple of months later to share 1st with Kasparov) and the rest of the world how to deal with 10..Qb6. 11.Nxc6 was a powerful novelty and the ensuing forced sequence seems convincing enough, after 15.Qf4 Black's bishop pair is fairly impotent and White's kingside play dangerous.

A game Wapner-Pavasovic 1996 that is not in this base improved, according to Peter Wells, on Kramnik's play by 17..Qb4!? although White's edge is beyond doubt.

Jan-04-06  KingG: Very impressive play from Leko, especially considering he was 16 years old, and was playing Kramnik! Kramnik never got into the game, and seemed to be on the defensive from the beginning to the end. I guess this was before Leko got his 'boring' reputation.
Sep-08-06  think: I laughed when I saw this game.

Right around move 33, black was probably starting to think that he could hold off in his little fortress around his king. Then white starts going for his queenside, and all black can do is stare over the parapet, cursing.

Oct-10-06  anandrulez: wha amazes me is leko's unwillingness to avoid any sort of tactical skirmish , simply pushing the pawn on the queen side , giving kramik no chance whatsoever. someone like shirov or morozevich would have won it in a diff style , but leko is too solid to give any counter chances to kramnik .
Nov-08-06  aw1988: It's not necessarily only the typical players that some suggest (Andersson, Petrosian, Leko, Kramnik, Ribli etc) which do not allow counter chances. Shirov and Morozevich can generally do very well. Don't forget: they are not rated 2700 for nothing! That's why such generalizations don't usually work... "Leko isn't tactical" - how would Leko be in his position to begin with? Yes, he is far less tactical than the more suited players to this style but that doesn't mean he can't play a proper game with something we aren't used to him seeing.

Mar-03-07  benba57: This is the first game of Leko's I have ever seen, and I gasped when I saw he was 16 at the time!
May-22-07  aazqua: What an absolutely dominant game, particularly at his age against a giant like Kramnik. I suppose Kramnik must have been young as well.
Aug-09-07  aazqua: Absolutely dominant. Kramnik probably wanted to resign in restrospect back at move 19. Ouch.
Mar-15-08  aazqua: I would much rather have seen him end it with 47 a7 followed by rd8 just to emphasize how bad black's position is. The tactical fluorish is nice but not as humiliating.
Jul-02-08  sheaf: just out of curiosity, the position after whites 33rd move.. is it the ugliest position a player ever had to face ?. I have seen fianchetto-ed rooks before but come on things cant get uglier than this. black should have resigned simply for aesthetic reasons.
Jul-12-08  PinnedPiece: What a game! How instructive for cleaning out the queenside of black!

It doesn't look that bad until 36 Rd6.....the beginning of the end!

Could be a game of the day as "Peter makes the Belgrade!"

Dec-05-12  SaVVy66: I dont get it at 19 nf6 why dint kramnik took knight with bishop.. i think that wasnt doing any harm..!?
Dec-05-12  Atking: <SaVVy66>19...BxN 20.Qe4 g6 21.exB then h4-h5 eventually Qe3. At time I was very impressed by the accuracy of the young Leko
Dec-08-12  SaVVy66: @at king.. i think h4 h5 can be saved by h6 h5 and the game continues..!
Dec-08-12  SaVVy66: but overall the kill will be trapped..
Dec-08-12  Atking: Indeed <SaVVy66> For if 21...Bb7 (Not the best but it helps to understand White attack) 22.Qe3 Kh7 23.h4 h5 24.Qg5 threatening 25.Qxh5+)
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