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Veselin Topalov vs Gata Kamsky
"A Sharp Tie" (game of the day May-06-2011)
Topalov - Kamsky Candidates Final (2009), Sofia BUL, rd 1, Feb-17
Gruenfeld Defense: Exchange. Classical Variation (D86)  ·  1/2-1/2
ANALYSIS [x]

FEN COPIED

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 33 OF 33 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Feb-17-09  Hesam7: <The more exotic try 28...Kg8!? would probably have led to the same result after 29.Nf6+ Qxf6 30.Qxh7+ Kf8 31.Rh6 Rc8 32.Rxg6 Rc1+ 33.Kh2 Qe5+ 34.Rg3 Rc3 35.Qg8+ Ke7 36.h4 Black's king is too exposed to entitle him aspire to an advantage.> - GM Marin

Can anybody improve on this line for Black?

Feb-17-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  stoy: 31: ...Re8 perhaps.
Feb-17-09  bishopone: according to chessgames database, kamsky didnt win against Topalov in a classic game. it is true? is 4-0 for topa http://www.chessgames.com/perl/ches...
Feb-17-09  sillybilly47: On to game Two.
Feb-17-09  samikd: <And he would already have BEEN facing Anand by virtue of winning the World Cup, if not for Topalov and his fellow thugs>

Whether or not Topalov is a thug, I did NOT like how they got their way as far as staging the match in Sofia was concerned. I mean..first the match is scheduled to be in Ukraine, then Danailov whines about it..and lo an behold : suddenly Ukraine gets cancelled and lo and behold again : SOFIA gets the match !

GO KAMSKY !

Feb-17-09  SetNoEscapeOn: <samkid>

That's an extremely original explanation of the circumstances surrounding the Lvov bid.

Feb-17-09  grebenarov: < samikd: <And he would already have BEEN facing Anand by virtue of winning the World Cup, if not for Topalov and his fellow thugs> Whether or not Topalov is a thug, I did NOT like how they got their way as far as staging the match in Sofia was concerned. I mean..first the match is scheduled to be in Ukraine, then Danailov whines about it..and lo an behold : suddenly Ukraine gets cancelled and lo and behold again : SOFIA gets the match ! >

It was all about sponsorship. It was all about who would fund the match the highest. Now we have a prize with equivalent of $250,000. Was that too much for a country like USA for example?? How difficult was that: to find a sposor for 300,000? Who is to blame here that the match is taking place in Bulgaria? Not THESE organizers cause they at least made the match possible with what they had.

Feb-18-09  Hesam7: <stoy: 31: ...Re8 perhaps.>

Actually that is what Dennis Monokroussos gives:

<<28...Rg8?!>

Missing a better chance to torture Topalov. 28...Kg8! 29.Nf6+ (29.Ng5? Rc8! 30.Nxh7 Qe3+ wins; e.g. 31.Kh2 Qxh6 32.Rxh6 Kg7 33.Rh5 Rh8 ) 29...Qxf6 30.Qxh7+ Kf8 31.Rh6 Re8 32.Rxg6 Re1+ 33.Kh2 Qe5+ 34.Rg3 Re3 White must be very careful here, not only on account of the pin but Black's dangerous passed d-pawn as well. 35.Qh6+ Ke7 36.Qg7+ Kd6 37.Qxe5+ Rxe5 (37...Kxe5? 38.Rxe3+ dxe3 39.Kg1 b5 40.Kf1 b4 41.Ke2 Kf4 42.h4 a5 43.g3+ Kxg3 44.h5 a4 45.h6 b3 46.h7 b2 47.h8Q b1Q= ) 38.Rg8 Kd5 Black has the better prospects here, though whether it's enough to win is a matter for deep analysis. What is clear is that White has an onerous defensive task ahead of him. (38...Ke7!? )>

Feb-18-09  percyblakeney: <first the match is scheduled to be in Ukraine, then Danailov whines about it..and lo an behold : suddenly Ukraine gets cancelled and lo and behold again : SOFIA gets the match !>

Sofia was to hold the match for $150.000, then Kamsky's manager offers $900.000 without paying. The deadline was postponed many times for over half a year but nothing happened. In the end the Bulgarians have to pay $250.000 instead of the originally agreed $150.000 and Topalov must withdraw from Linares, and the match is finally played. I doubt one can blame Danailov in this case.

Feb-18-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  acirce: <percyblakeney> Exactly. I don't know what happened to Kirsan's official promise to "guarantee the organiser's offer by backing the event from his personal finances" though. But I don't remember the details, and of course have no idea what went on behind the curtains. Maybe there was a legitimate reason.
Feb-18-09  attack and destroy: For the record. GM Dimitrov's commentary. Can someone post Svidler's commentary? Veselin Topalov - Gata kamsky
Round 1
Chess Challengers 2009
Sofia
The game starts at 14:00 CET, feel free to leave your thoughts about Topalov - Kamsky in the forum. Topalov will have the white pieces, Kamsky will start with black. Minute by minute updates from the opening ceremony and press conference here One of this year's biggest chess events is about to begin. Two top GMs will face the challenge to win the right to play for the World Chess Championship against Anand. Veselin Topalov, N.1 in FIDE ranking seems to be the obvious favorite with the event hosted by his home country. Things are not that simple though. Topalov, who is extraordinary tournament fighter, doesn't fare so well in matches - he has little experience in such - and playing on home turf may cause additional psychological pressure. Kamsky, on the contrary, has vast knowledge what are the right things to do during a match. He has no outstanding tournament results but has won most of his matches including against Anand and Kramnik. Someone may argue that those things happened long ago but at the World Cup - event consisting of mini matches only - he was unstoppable. Based on this, though my personal sympathies go for Topalov, I predict a very tough match with hard fight in every single game. Let's hope that the audience will enjoy a spectacular show.

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 Gruenfeld Defense should not surprise anyone, as Sutovsky, Kamsky's second, is one of the greatest expert in this opening and recently Gata sometimes uses it instead of his favorite Slav.

4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Bc4 c5 8.Ne2 Nc6 9.Be3 O-O 10.O-O The very main line, which brought Topalov several impressive victories.

10... Na5 ( Nobody dares challenge Veselin anymore in the complicated lines after 10... Bg4)

11.Bd3 b6 12.Qd2 e5 13.Bh6 ( At the Russian Team Championship in 2008, van Wely played 13.d5 against Kamsky and lost. The game move is not a novelty but judging by the speed of Veselin's play has to be studied thoroughly during the home preparation.)

13... cxd4 14.Bxg7 Kxg7 15.cxd4 exd4 16.f4 f6 17.e5 This has to be the prepared novelty novelty. Clock readings: 1.57 1.34 Until this game White followed a plan involving Ng3, Rac1 and a march of the 'h' pawn. Kamsky is still thinking and has 53 minutes on the clock. He has to chose between letting White shatter the pawns covering his King, or simplifying the position a bit but leaving Topalov with a strong passed pawn on the 'e' file.

17... Bd7 Developing move that connects Black Rooks on the 8th rank. Now fxe5 is a threat and White should determine the situation in the center.

18.exf6+ Qxf6 19.Ng3 Kh8 The defensive setup of Kamsky seems to be sound. He neutralized the f4-f5 threat and Veselin has to find a way to keep the initiative.

20.f5 gxf5 With Kg7 this would not be possible in view of Nh5+

21.Bxf5 (21.Nxf5 Rae8 22.Rac1 Nc6 and Black manages to coordinate his pieces.)

21... Bxf5 22.Rxf5 Qd6 23.Raf1 Nc6 One may note that there are almost no lines in my comments. The reason is simple: after 16 moves theory, White makes a novelty, Black finds a good defensive plan and his opponent has to go for forced lines to keep his pressure, while being a pawn down. I would not say that only moves are made all the time but deviating might lead either player in inferior situation.

24.Ne4 Qe7 25.Qh6 Rxf5 26.Rxf5 Once again Topalov forces the Black moves. Now 26...Ne5 is the only defense.

26... Ne5 27.h3 (27.Ng5 is countered by 27... Ng4) ( or 27.Nf6 Ng6) ( Objectively, the best option seems to be 27.Qd2 d3 28.Qc3 Re8 29.Qd4 Qg7 30.Qd6 keeping the position about equal. Topalov is not the kind of player to retreat and he is still looking for forced lines.)

27... Ng6 Kamsky defends in cold blood. He retained his extra pawn and Veselin should be careful. The time spent is about equal: 0.39 0.30

28.Rh5 (28.Rh5 Kg8 29.Nf6+ Qxf6 30.Qxh7+ Kf8 31.Rh6 Rc8 32.Rxg6 Rc1+ 33.Kh2 Qf4+ 34.Rg3 Rc3 35.Qg7+ Ke8 36.Qg5 is a possible line leading to about equal Rook ending.)

28... Rg8 This should lead to a forced draw, while Kg8 was offering some chances to fight for more.

29.Nf6 Rg7 30.Nxh7 Rxh7 31.Qxg6 Qe3+ 32.Kf1 Qc1+ 33.Kf2 (33.Ke2 d3+ 34.Qxd3 Rxh5 35.Qd8+ leads to perpetual.)

33... Qd2+ 34.Kg3 Qe3+ 35.Kh2 Qf4+ 36.Kg1 Qc1+ Draw agreed. Topalov played a novelty on move 17 and launched an attack against opponent's King without ever looking back. Kamsky found good defensive resources and never seemed in real trouble. The draw seems like the just outcome and we are still to watch more fierce battles. 1/2

Feb-18-09  sillybilly47: Lvov just could not come up with the cash. Yes, it would be better to have the match outside of Bulgaria but you take what you can get. All in all, it matters not, Topa wins over Kamsky no matter where they play. Anand, your next! Topa forever!
Feb-20-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  acirce: Yermolinsky (before 24.Ne4): <Bh6, f4, e5, f5 - Topalov handled this game with the subtlety of a Cro-Magnon>
Mar-15-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Kamsky saves the game with perputal check.
May-06-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: The game was probably a live broadcast to account for 33 pages of kibitzing. I imagine it was chosen because of one of the matchups in the Candidates Matches.

It was surely exciting at the time, but now seems to be a sharp game without depth or complexity. However, I'm not going to go back and read everything to find out how wrong I am.

THe pun is apt, but has been used before: Chigorin vs Schlechter, 1905

May-06-11  nolanryan: can someone help me with the pun here? thanks in advance
May-06-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <nolanryan> The game was played sharply, and ended in a tie (draw).

Maybe it would have worked better on Father's Day.

May-06-11  I play the Fred: "A sharp tie" is an anagram for "Pisa Heart". Now that you know, the pun is incredibly obvious.
May-06-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  YouRang: <nolanryan: can someone help me with the pun here? thanks in advance>

Sure. Basically, it's a lousy pun and probably never should have gotten past the pun police.

The game tactics were ... "sharp".

It ended drawn, or in a ... "tie".

Hence, "A sharp tie".

And since "sharp tie" has no reasonably well-known meaning in any other sense, it's either a poor pun or not even a pun at all, IMO.

May-06-11  SamAtoms1980: <I play the Fred: "A sharp tie" is an anagram for "Pisa Heart". Now that you know, the pun is incredibly obvious.>

Yeah. And the Leaning Tower of Pisa is in Italy, and Kamsky's favorite place for dinner is the Olive Garden.

See, it makes PERFECT sense.

May-06-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: It's also an anagram for "He's A Tapir", but that doesn't seem complimentary.

Actually, I think it's quite simple. If you want to compliment somebody on their choice of neckwear, you might say, "That's <a sharp tie> you're wearing." I don't think it refers to anything more exotic than that.

Funny they should pick this game on a day the two didn't tie!

May-06-11  Yodaman: On Febuary 17, 2009 <bishopone> wrote on this kibitzing page: <bishopone: according to chessgames database, kamsky didnt win against Topalov in a classic game. it is true? is 4-0 for topa> I think he was correct.

Then only four days later on Febuary 21, 2009 Kamsky beat Topalov for the first time ever in a classic game (game here: Kamsky vs Topalov, 2009 ).

The only time Kamsky has ever beaten Topalov in a classic game after that first win on Feb 21, 2009 was... wait for it... earlier today! Topalov vs Kamsky, 2011

search "kamsky vs topalov"

Cool coincidences? I think so.

May-07-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Peligroso Patzer: <Phony Benoni: ***
Funny they should pick this game on a day the two didn't tie!>

The decisive game played yesterday, Topalov vs Kamsky, 2011, had me wondering whether the obvious but apt pun "Gata Believe" has been used before. <Phony Benoni>, you are the regnant authority on that subject.

May-07-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: While white looked for a quick win,his opponent was even quicker on the draw!
May-07-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <Peligroso Patzer> Now you can be a regnant authority too!

Game Collection Search

By the way, the answer is no. However, we have had:

<Gata Go Now> Kamsky vs Kramnik, 1994 (Jun-17-04, Feb-18-09)

<Gata Good Game> Kamsky vs Kiril Georgiev, 2007 (Dec-17-07)

<Gata Love It> Kamsky vs Karpov, 1996 (Jan-10-07)

<Gata Pull This Off> Kramnik vs Kamsky, 1994 (Sep-29-10)

<Something's Gata Give> Kamsky vs Svidler, 2006 (Dec-01-06)

<What a Man's Gata Do> Bacrot vs Kamsky, 2007 (May-29-07)

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