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Hikaru Nakamura vs Justin Sarkar
"Naka Your Socks Off" (game of the day Jul-17-2006)
34th World Open (2006), Philadelphia, PA USA, rd 2, Jun-29
Trompowsky Attack: General (A45)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Boy! Did white make the pieces fly! A great exhibition of sacs and combination play equal to a Morphy or a Tal!

The end,of course,falls quickly:white threatens 33 ♘e8# and 33 ♘xc4 both cannot be stopped.

Premium Chessgames Member
  thesonicvision: 24. c4! threatening d5 and
if exd, QxN signaled the beginning
of the end for black. afterwards,
his defense shattered.
Jul-17-06  spirit: but why didn't blac capture with the horse? can't be a good thursday puzzle because of this possibility...or what do you think? <pazmo7>
Jul-17-06  ikipemiko: not an impressive game at all
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Indeed the positional pawn sacrifice 24. c4! was the move that turned the game strongly in White's favor. If 24...dxc4?, then 25. d5! g6 26. dxe6+ fxe6 27. Rxg6 gives White a winning attack.

Black made it look easy for Nakamura with 27...Kxe7, to allow the winning discovered attack combination 28. Qxf5! However, Black probably saw that 27...Nxe7 also lost to several moves including 28. Qe4! Rxf2 29. Rh1 .

Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <spirit> <why didn't black capture with the knight> Two possibilities here. One, he didn't see it. Two, it's possible he saw that 27...Nxe7 loses just as decisively to 28. Qe4! Rxf2 29. Rh1 .

So, (28 ?) would make a good weekday puzzle, while (24. ?) would be a great weekend brain-buster.

Jul-17-06  hickchess99: i'm with iki. big whoop. i could give nakamura knight odds and still lose. hummmph---
Jul-17-06  HannibalSchlecter: too much pussy footing around by black
Jul-17-06  Bobwhoosta: For all you Hikaru Nakamura bashers out there, well, you have your own opinion, but I have a fact: 2632, at 19 years of age. Go kid!!
Premium Chessgames Member
  James Demery: Phoney Benoni and Hannibal Schlecter have to be the 2 best names on I feel so boring using my real name. Naka`s tactics have been criticised as shallow , but he is a 2664 rated player.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: I'm certainly not trying to bash Nakamura in any way. I know how good he is from personal experience, having played him back when he was a twelve-year-old Master. Didn't last 20 moves--with White.

I'm only saying that the flashy moves 26.Nxd5 and 28.Qxf5 are easy to find, and don't show his true strength.

Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <BobWhoosta> I don't understand the Nakamura criticism here either, especially since he didn't make any significant mistakes in this game. Fischer's wins used to look easy too. But isn't that what geniuses do? They make the difficult look easy, and beating a 2355 player this decisively is not easy.

Furthermore, Nakamura's 24. c4!! was a brilliant positional sacrifice, while 22. Nf4! was another deep best move. Such play indicates this young American GM is incorporating more strategy and strong positional play into his already strong tactical game. I predict that if he continues to study and play, he will become a Super GM and compete for the World Championship.

Premium Chessgames Member
  CapablancaFan: <patzer2> I don't think anyone is attacking Nakamura personally, I just think that they are attacking this game. Nakamura has plenty of masterpieces in the chessgames database, and I think some are just questioning the choice of THIS game for the game of the day when Nakamura has plenty more games that are more interesting from an artistic, positional, and conceptual point of view. It's just that this game, an 1800 rater could have played with the same results that's all.
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <It's just that this game, an 1800 rater could have played with the same results that's all.>

No 1800 I've ever seen plays like this, especially against someone rated in the 2300s.

<I don't think anyone is attacking Nakamura personally, I just think that they are attacking this game.>

Sure people are attacking Nakamura personally.

<I can't tell if this guy is just being sarcastic or he's genuinely impressed by the kind of shallow, overhyped chess that Nakamura plays.>

Premium Chessgames Member
  CapablancaFan: <keypusher> You are welcome to your opinion obviously, but I'm telling you there is nothing deep about this game unless you are a 1800 rater or less. This is nothing an 1800+ rater could'nt have played.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Timothy Glenn Forney: Apparently 6...Qa5+ is better leading to a draw:Adams vs Leko, 1995
Jul-17-06  Brown: <<TGF> Apparently 6...Qa5+ is better leading to a draw:Adams vs Leko, 1995>

I don't see black having a good time in this game either.

Premium Chessgames Member
  I3illieJoe: Stop being jealous about Nakamura. I don't know if the guy is a genius but he is certainly very, very talented !!
Jul-17-06  ARTIN: Yeah, not a big deal at all. Black didn't allow white to demonstrate an 1800+ rating as many have pointed out.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Perhaps Black's play was a bit stronger than he's been given credit for here. Just completed a lengthy analysis with Fritz 8, and after 20 moves Black appears to have equalized and secured a defensible position.

Specifically, 21...Kf8! , instead of 21...Kd7?!, would appear to give Black a slightly better position. Missing that opportunity, 22...Qb5!=, instead of 22...Qa5?! (IMO the losing move), would also seem to hold the position.

Nakamura, to his credit, I believe spotted Black's slight errors at move 21 and 22 and exploited them for a winning advantage with the positional sacrifice 24. c4!!, which he set up with 21. Be5! and 22. Nf4! This strong positional play IMO is what led to the rather "simple" deflection and discovered check tactics at moves 25 and 27.

P.S. Once read a quote from a GM who said in effect that any number of Masters could pull of Fischer's combinations, but that the trick was in the finding the positional moves to set up the winning positions. Maybe the same can be said of this contest.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <patzer 2>That quote originally came from Spielmann, talking about Alekhine. This version comes from Irving Chernev's The Bright Side of Chess:

"I can comprehend Alekhine's combinations well enough; but where he gets his attacking chances from and how he infuses such life into the very openings-that is beyond me. Give me the postions he obtains, and I would seldom falter. Yet I contunally get drawn games, even out of the King's Gambit!"

I think you're right that it is quite appropriate here.

Jul-19-06  spirit: <overhyped>? this is a new concept to me!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Rocafella: It annoys me that people jumped on the bandwagon with someone's comment about this isn't a great game. It may not be a fantastic game, but I don't think it's 'not an impressive game at all.' If someone else other than Nakamura played this game, then they would be prasing the game.
Jan-21-09  WhiteRook48: fantastic eNdgame :-)
Nov-13-11  DrMAL: <CapablancaFan: <keypusher> You are welcome to your opinion obviously, but I'm telling you there is nothing deep about this game unless you are a 1800 rater or less> Another critic self-proclaimed as super-genius it does indeed seem this poster is very familiar with "being a 1800 rater or less" LOL. Game was very nicely played by Nakamura, especially with 24.c4! move as <patzer2> posted. Tromp games in general suit Naka's tactical genius and this was not exception.
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