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Alexander Morozevich vs Boris Gelfand
Biel International Chess Festival (2009), Biel SUI, rd 2, Jul-20
Bishop's Opening: Berlin Defense (C24)  ·  1-0
ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Jul-20-09  hellopolgar: black's last move...what a blunder...but Boris Gelfand is probably one of the few 2700+ super GM's that Moro beats consistently...
Jul-20-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Even without blunder the black position looks already difficult to me. Especially the isolated ♙b7, ♙d5 were weak. And ♖h5 is a bit outposted.
Jul-20-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  messachess: embarrassing blunder
Jul-20-09  returnoftheking: Whiteshark is right. Black must be lost.

Right from the (rare) opening white creates and plays against black's isolated d pawn. When the opportunity presents itself Moro combines it with play against the b pawn. White's queenside pawn majority and black's out of play rook are not helping.

Jul-20-09  returnoftheking: Cliche but true; quite original manoeuvres by Moro.
Rf1-e1-e2-d2-d3-b3-b5 is something not ordinary f.e.
Jul-20-09  Hesam7: Black could not avoid losing a pawn. Here is Rybka's line at chessok:

30...Nf6 31.h3 Kh7 32.Rb6 Rf5 33.Rdb4 d4 34.Rxd4 Nd5 35.Rb5 Kg6 36.Kg3 Kh5 37.Rd1 Kg6 38.Kh2 (+0.92|d19)


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In the diagram not only White is a pawn up but in such endings the bishop is superior to knight.

Jul-20-09  laskersteinitz: This is child's play!
Jul-20-09  notyetagm: 30 ♖d1-d4 Δ 31 ♖d4x♘e4!


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30 ... ♖d7-d6??


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31 ♖d4x♘e4! 1-0 <pin: h5>


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How in the *world* can someone as strong as Gelfand (2755!) overlook the simple <LATERAL PIN> 31 ♖d4x♘e4! ???

Jul-20-09  karnak64: Hmm. I wonder if some perceptual faculty is at work here that causes folks, even GMs, to see the north-south on the chessboard more than the east-west. Still, amazing mistake for Gelfand although he was probably losing anyway.

Bummer. I was hoping he'd do well this tournament.

Jul-20-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: Interesting if Moro shot him a glance before he took the knight.

Bad mistake, but the lateral pin is easier to overlook, especially if you are focussed on the Rb5 pressure on the b7 pawn.

Nothing really works, and that is when impulsive decisions are made.

Jul-20-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  refutor: not sure if the best plan for black is to allow the isolated pawn and give up the bishop pair (of course this is by hindsight). i wonder if black could have improved early on by not moving his queen to b6
Jul-20-09  polarlumpensack: Gelfand was a good snack for Moro, to warm up for this tournament... even without the blunder the position was a swiss cheese full of holes..
Jul-20-09  ozmikey: Incredible blunder from a 2700+ player. I wonder what the time situation was?
Jul-20-09  Octal: They say it's easier to think within files and not ranks. Thus where the old Russian saying "A wood pusher overlooks the ranks" comes from.
Jul-20-09  outplayer: 30...g6 holds.
Jul-21-09  crwynn: astonishing, in my own games I sometimes decide to sacrifice one thing and for this reason fail to notice I am dropping something else...I would not expect this to be a problem for one of the best players in the world though. Still I expect that is what happened, he was so focused in the lines after 31.Rxb7 Rg6+ - for instance 32.Kh1 Rh3 threatening Rxe3 - that the pin on h5 was "of little interest to him". Not that that makes it much less bizarre.
Jul-21-09  Whitehat1963: Final move is a Monday puzzle three years from now.
Jul-21-09  aktajha: What's most interesting is that Morozevich avoids the Petroff, normally people think then it's even more easy to draw, but Gelfand is in a difficult position in a move range (about 18 moves) where a lot of Petroff lines are still within theory...so far for the importance of studying opening lines -> it's more important to know nuances of resulting positions.
Jul-21-09  noeldegood: Always remember: When you make a blunder it cheers up your opponent who might be having a difficult day!!
Jul-21-09  levelzx: That loose Rook at h5 was just victim of a duboius maneuver c2-c5-h5. I have no idea why Gelfand misplaced it so badly, especially since it was so great at second rank.
Jul-21-09  kellmano: I stopped watching this game live after move 22 from Moro certain a draw was imminent. Gelfand throws it away.

A great win for Moro in round one, then his opponent rather hands him a win in round two.

Jul-22-09  lunacyfrog: ^ White already had the better game and decent winning chances by move 22...
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