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Alexey Shirov vs Vladimir Kramnik
Shirov - Kramnik WCC Candidates Match (1998), Cazorla ESP, rd 4, May-28
Russian Game: Modern Attack. Center Variation (C43)  ·  1-0
ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-12-03  PVS: Things seemed to slip away from Kramnik early in game four. He looked fine after 14. Bxg5, but in a half dozen moves or so found himself at a disadvantage. Kramnik did rally and threaten a mate with his bishop and rook, but Shirov avoided the traps. The key question for me is, could Kramnik have salvaged the draw had he not traded rooks?
Jul-16-04  Ivax: what about 17... Bc5+ and Re3. and seems black is ok
Jul-17-04
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: <Ivax> 17 ... Bc5+ 18. Kh1 Re3?! 19. fxg5 Rxh3 20. Bb5! wins the exchange (20 ... Rxc3 21. bxc3) because Black cannot otherwise meet 21. Nxd5 & 22. gxh3 (20 ... Bc6 21. Bxc6; 20 ... Bd6 21. Nxd5 Rxh2+ 22. Kg1). Less good is 20. Be4!? Rxc3 (20 ... Bxe4?? 21. Nxe4 wins a piece) 21. Bxd5 Rd3 22. Bxf7+ Kg7 23. Bc4 Rd7 where White gains a Pawn for an opposite colored Bishop endgame.
Oct-11-05  seeminor: Shirov must still be wondering how Kramnik can swan about talking about being world champion, when he didnt even earn the right to play gazza. Its an absolute disgrace.
Oct-16-05  Unicornio: Kramnik should have resigned like 30 moves before!!!!!

Oct-16-05  Unicornio: <An absolutely disgrace>, you are right <seeminor>.
Nov-23-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: I'm not so sure-with same colored bishops,yes.With opposite colored bishops,the win becomes more problematic. If the pawns weren't connected,a win is highly questionable. Here white runs black ot of moves in the end.
Dec-01-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: <If the pawns weren't connected,a win is highly questionable.> As a fairly general rule actually, disconnected pawns help(!) in off-collor endgames. The further separated the two pawns are, the better -- save for rook pawns; those create exceptional cases.
Nov-19-06  Hesam7: 20... Re3 seems like an improvement. After that 21. Bc4 Qd4 is forced. Now Shredder give the following line at depth 15:


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22. Qh6 Bf8 23. Qg5 Kg7 24. Qa5 Bd6 (eval: +0.22)

Jun-03-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  fm avari viraf: Kramnik, ultimately lands himself in a deadly zugswang! Even, great players have the taste of it.
Apr-09-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: The first decisive game in the match after three quiet draws. Shirov had played 8 Nc3 in the second game without gaining any initiative. Jangava after 13 Qh3: "In return for the pawn, Black has a lead in development and has driven White's Queen offside. In addition, White's extra pawn is isolated and weak. On the other hand, White's concessions are of a temporary nature; once he develops his remaining pieces he will be well on the way to consolidating the extra pawn." 13..Ng5 was new; Yusupov, the developer of this gambit, had previously played 13..Qb6, 13..Rc8 and 13..Bb4. Shirov returned the pawn and could have kept the tension in the middlegame with 21 Rc3. Instead after 21 Bc4 the threat of 22 Bf7+ forced an endgame after 21..Qf5.Kramnik felt the position should be a draw but Speelman's comment was: "If Shirov can keep one or both pairs of rooks on then Kramnik's shattered kingside will afford him serious winning chances, even if Black retains material equality for many moves. Kramnik opted for active counterplay rather than 21..a6 22 Bc4..Rd7 which Kramnik still felt was drawn. 35..Bxh2? was a serious error leading to the loss of the a-pawn; 35..Rxh2+ 36 Kg3..fxg 37 Kxg4..Rh6 38 Bc4..Rf6 was a better continuation. Kramnik had the option with 38..Rg2 of entering lines where he would have retained his f-pawn but White's King would have been activated. Instead he felt he had more practical chances two pawns down but with better piece activity and White's King offside. Seirawan after 41..Be5: "The connected passed pawns give White a win but the presence of opposite colored bishops means great care must be exercised. 41..Be5 threatened 42..Kf5 with good counterplay against the White King. Speelman called 42 Bf1! as possibly the "only winning move" (maybe 42 Ra6 as well). Shirov avoided the rook exchange until his King was sufficiently activated to ensure the win. Even then there were some traps Shirov had to avoid. This was a really instructive endgame. I assumed that with the connected passed pawns that win was straightforward but Shirov had to play very well to avoid many drawing lines. Kramnik, Seirawan and Salov all contributed excellent analysis but Speelman should be singled out for praise. In my opinion he is the best contemporary writer on endgames. It is interesting that Shirov did not annotate this game given its importance.
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