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Bartlomiej Macieja vs Teimour Radjabov
World Chess Cup (2007), Khanty-Mansiysk RUS, rd 2, Nov-27
Spanish Game: Schliemann Defense (C63)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
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Nov-27-07  Red October: tripled pawns.. now that's a sight we don't get to see often from a GM of the level of Radjabov
Nov-27-07  twinlark: <suentus po 147>

<Was 3...f5 hubris on Radjabov's part?>

I had that impression, too. What a useless opening to play against a super GM, even if he is lower rated by over 100. Macieja completely outplayed the Radjabov.

Radjabov's need to win the next game will create an interesting tension. maybe he'll play the Smith-Morra Gambit or the Scotch Gambit...

Nov-27-07  Ezzy: The critical position

click for larger view

Radjabov played 26...Rf8? He didn't take seriously the power of whites knight reaching e5 and mopping up black's pawns. Radjabov should play 26...Ba6 and exchange his bishop for whites very strong knight.

Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: Good point <Ezzy> Radjabov had a similar position against Carlsen in Amber Blindfold Carlsen vs Radjabov, 2007 and went for an early ...Ba6 bishop knight exchange. Perhaps with Macieja he thought he could take liberties.
Nov-27-07  ajile: I admire Radjabov for playing the Schliemann Defense. A nice break from the endless queen's gambits and ruy lopezes.
Nov-28-07  ahmadov: <ajile: I admire Radjabov for playing the Schliemann Defense. A nice break from the endless queen's gambits and ruy lopezes.> The same here...
Nov-28-07  notyetagm: Macieja vs Radjabov, 2007

Position after 29 ♘e5xc6!:

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Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: IMO <13...d5> would have been a more fitting move here.

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Dec-05-07  shr0pshire: I have always admired the Schliemann, and I don't think it is as dubious as others may make it out to be. Let me try to see if I can find any improvements on Radjabov's play.

11. ...Bd4?! This isn't a bad move, but I don't think it is the strongest move available. If Radjabov wanted to control the a7-g1 diagonal, he should have moved his bishop back to 11. ..Bb6 initially, otherwise he allows 12. c3 and white to gain some space at his expense.

15. ... Bg4?! again, this is the similar problem of the bishop that I described above. White can play, and will play, f3, which only strengthens his position. Since Radjabov allows his bishop to be kicked back, and allow white to further close the game, and reinforce his broad center, while making his bishops worse. Very bad positionally. 15. ...Rb8 is an interesting move in this position, and probably better than 15. ...Bg4.

19. ...Bxc5?! I think this is questionable because black trades one of his bishops. At this point the game is starting to open up, and there may be more of a chance for more room to open up for his bishops to work in the endgame. By playing 19. ...dxc5 black will temporarily make his bishop a horrible piece, but it will probably play dividends as the game continues to open up.

26. ...Raf1? Black could have easily strengthened his position and tried to activate his bad bishop by playing 26. ...Ba6, but again Radjabov played his bishops poorly.

I could go on further, but I think after move 26 the game is already losing. The difference in this game is I don't think Radjabov played his bishops correctly, for the position. I don't know if this could have drawn or not, but it would not have been so crushing if Radjabov played his bishops a little more smartly.

Dec-24-07  notyetagm: Position after 28 ... ♕f6-d6:

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29 ♘e5xc6!, 34 b3xc4, and 40 ♕e3xc5 devour all three of Black's horrible tripled c-pawns, leaving Black simply down three pawns for nothing.

Position after 40 ♕e3xc5:

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Dec-24-07  hovik2003: What a wipe out!, I would have never expected big mouth Radjabov get a knockout punch like this from a player 150 points lower than him.
Dec-24-07  notyetagm: <hovik2003> Yes, this was a complete disaster for Radjabov.

He skipped both the Tal Memorial and the World Blitz Championship to prepare for the World Cup, and then got wiped out 0-2 in the -second- round by a player rated 136(!) points below him.

Dec-24-07  ahmadov: <notyetagm> Never mind... That may happen with any player...
Dec-24-07  hovik2003: < notyetagm >
Well to keep the national and racial balance I could have made an equal comment for Aronian, but atleast he got to the fifth round I think, him too skipped Tal Memorial and World blitz to prepare for this event.
Dec-24-07  notyetagm: <hovik2003: < notyetagm > Well to keep the national and racial balance I could have made an equal comment for Aronian, but atleast he got to the fifth round I think, him too skipped Tal Memorial and World blitz to prepare for this event.>

Yes, while Magnus played both the Tal Memorial and the World Blitz Championship but made it to the Final Four at the World Cup. :-)

Only the eventual winner Kamsky stopped Magnus from reaching the final.

That Magnus Carlsen has freakin' awesome chess talent. The two active chess players whose games I study the most are Carlsen's and Kramnik's.

Dec-24-07  KamikazeAttack: I agree. Radja's performance in thw WC was very surprising.

He underperformed big time. Just in Jan whe he ran riot at Corus peeps were talking him up as the next WC.

He has to step up big time to regain some credibility.

Carlsen has been sooooooooooo busy all year and done very well. His experience this year must be invaluable.

Feb-21-08  ajile: See for Radjabov's improvement played against Anand. Radjabov played 5..Bc5 instead of 5..Nf6 but the game transposes to the same variation. Note that Macieja recommends 13...d5 so in the Anand game both players probably believed this improvement over 13..d6 would equalize for Black.
Mar-07-08  Atking: Yes <ajile> I agree 13...d5 is better. At time Radjabov missed probably 15.Kh1! Not the move by itself but its consequences. Else on 13...d5 14.e5 Rf8 is enought. May be a bit better on Black's favor. Who need f pawn with a Bishop pair and R on f file...
Mar-10-08  notyetagm: I just -love- this tactical example by Macieja.

White to play: 29 ?

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Here White (Macieja) uses the <BALEFUL INFLUENCE: EVERY SINGLE SQUARE -IS- THREATENED> of his White c1-rook against the c6-square/Black c6-pawn to play the startling 29 ♘e5xc6!.

Position after 29 ♘e5xc6!

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The <BALEFUL INFLUENCE> of the White c1-rook means that essentially White has not one but -two- pieces controling c6 (White e5-knight -and- c1-rook) while Black has only one piece defending it (Black d6-queen).

After the obvious recapture 29 ... ♕d6x♘c6?

(VAR) Position after 29 ... ♕d6x♘c6?

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the <BALEFUL INFLUENCE> of the White c1-rook would -still- exist against the c6-square, resulting in the Black c5-pawn being <PINNED> to the <UNDEFENDED> Black c6-queen.

This variation was the main point behind 29 ♘e5xc6!, the <PIN> resulting from 29 ... ♕d6x♘c6? which drops the Black d4-rook to 30 ♕e3x♖d4!

(VAR) 29 ... ♕d6x♘c6? 30 ♕e3x♖d4!

click for larger view

Not very difficult but terribly instructive.

Apr-30-08  newtonbag: its interesting that this is Radjabov's only loss with the Schliemann to date, despite all his other opponents with it being 2700+
Jul-19-08  The Ninth Pawn: From Game Collection: The Ninth Pawn's Chess Course :

In Macieja vs Radjabov, 2007 , White plays 29. ♘e5x♙c6! a DECOY INTO A PIN because if 29. ... ♕d6x♘c6? 30. ♕e3x♖d4 because of the pin on the c-file White is an exchange up for a pawn.

Dec-10-10  Johnny O: Radjabov losing in 2007 to a 2606. Wow.
Dec-10-10  BobCrisp: Prepare to be shocked: Carlsen lost in 2010 to a <2645>, a <2636> and a <2627>.
Jun-14-11  Maatalkko: <newtonbag> Yeah, I was just looking up his Schliemann history and he has scored solid draws with it since this game. It wasn't "hubris" in 2007; Macieja just played a better game. The Schliemann appears vindicated by current theory. Maybe in five years World Champions will use this to draw instead of the superficially safer Berlin.
Jun-14-11  Maatalkko: I don't think 4. d3 is very scary against the Schliemann, and the computers seem to be of the opinion that Black holds in the tactical 4. Nc3 lines. I'm sure there are "only" moves that have to be memorized, but Nisipeanu had no problems holding an 4. Nc3 Schliemann against Carlsen in this tournament last year.
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