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Teimour Radjabov vs Magnus Carlsen
Tal Memorial (2012), Moscow RUS, rd 5, Jun-13
Scotch Game: Classical. Intermezzo Variation (C45)  ·  0-1
ANALYSIS [x]

FEN COPIED

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 14 OF 14 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jun-13-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Bobby Fiske: Magnus might have problems with his memory, mixing up the first moves of a known opening line. But it seems there is nothing wrong with his long term memory. The game of Capablanca which he "copied" today is from 1936.
Jun-13-12  Chessmaster9001: Endgame masterpiece by Carlsen! But knowing Radja personally I`m sure he will definitely try to get his revenge in Bazna Kings tournament in Romania, there will be blood...
Jun-13-12  Hesam7: <Eyal: <Hesam7: Magnus I-am-too-cool-for-opening-prep Carlsen allows a line in Scotch which nowadays is considered dubious.>

From the press conference:

Q: Where did White go wrong in the opening that he got such a bad position?

Carlsen (shrugging his shoulders): I don't know - I don't really know this line... I've looked at it a little bit, but actually a good friend of mine told me today that Teimour will not play the Scotch, so I wasn't very well-prepared. And I also sort of expected from him to play [5.]Nb3 as he played against Tomashevsky in the first round.

But then he also said that castling on move 12 is definitely inaccurate, since after the queen exchange Black's position is very comfortable. (As was pointed out in the kibitzing during the game, when the queens face each other on the g-file neither side wants to open the h-file for the other's rook, so the right moment to trade seems to be right after the K-side castling.)>

Thanks.

Saying that castling was inaccurate does not point to preparation. At that point castling (for either side actually) was inaccurate because it took the rook away from the h-file and allowed the Q-exchange.

Jun-13-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <Saying that castling was inaccurate does not point to preparation.>

Yeah, of course... I wasn't trying to imply that it does. This just seems to be a kind of opening/position where, if you have a positional understanding of Carlsen's level, you don't really need very deep preparation.

Jun-13-12  Hesam7: I thought Radjabov's best try was suggested by GM Kamil Miton at ChessBomb:

<The only one idea for white in this position is c4-c5. For example 17. c4 Kf7 (17. ... c5 does not look good because of the closed bishop) 18. c5 (or 18. b4!?) 18. ... dxc5 19. b3 with interesting position XBb6.>


click for larger view

If Black does not do anything quickly he seems to be in a bad shape, since White has a clear plan to improve his pieces: Nb2-Nc4(Bc4)-f3-Rd2-Rfd1-Be3-Kf2:


click for larger view

Jun-13-12  Hesam7: <Eyal: <Saying that castling was inaccurate does not point to preparation.>

Yeah, of course... I wasn't trying to imply that it does. This just seems to be a kind of opening/position where, if you have a positional understanding of Carlsen's level, you don't really need very deep preparation.>

But that seems arrogant and insane. If Carlsen works on his openings he won't need to enter inferior positions with the hope of outplaying his opponents. He was lucky not to lose to Kramnik and Morozevich. And today's game could have ended very differently had Radjabov played slightly better and less passive.

Jun-13-12  Pedro Fernandez: < haydn20: <Honza> This looks right. If 54. g4! then 54...d2 55. Ra5 Bg8 56. Ra8 Rxb2 57. Bxd5 Kxd5 58. Rc5+ seems to hold. Nice find!> But 53.Kf3, so if 55.Ra5 d1=Q+.
Jun-13-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <But that seems arrogant and insane. If Carlsen works on his openings he won't need to enter inferior positions with the hope of outplaying his opponents [...] And today's game could have ended very differently had Radjabov played slightly better and less passive.>

"Arrogant and insane"?! I'm not talking about opening preparation in general (or Carlsen's supposed approach to it), only about this specific game and the type of position that its opening yields. I don't see that Carlsen entered any clearly inferior position here, it was a normal game in a variation that's based mainly on rather slow positional maneuverings. Of course Radjabov didn't play it so well and could have done better, even before the later stages – that's always the case when one gets with White a slightly inferior (or at least uncomfortable) position at a relatively early stage of the game. But it's not like he missed an obvious opportunity to get a clear advantage.

Btw, Radjabov plays this line quite often, but it's not like he tends to do great with it (or - apparently - to have such brilliant ideas in it), unless he thinks of it as no more than a drawing weapon; not a single win in all 13 previous games: http://www.chessgames.com/perl/ches...

Jun-13-12  MORPHYEUS: As per Carlsen, he didn't have a problem on the opening on his game with Radjabov.

Many were quick to say that Magnus was off-form at the beginning of the tournament (because of the 3 games).

But in my opinion, it's just the law of averages. At this level, it's not that often that Carlsen will get an advantage in the opening. Carlsen would have gone on drawing his first 8 games and i would have say it's still within the range of the law of averages.

Jun-13-12  coolchess1: On move 28, why didn't radjabov advance the pawn to c4? After exchanging that pawn was it not equal for white or some drawback here?
Jun-13-12  nikromos: Great game. Remarkably similar (with colors reversed) to Larsen vs L Lengyel, 1964 although with same instead of opposite colored bishops.
Jun-14-12  talisman: <coolchess1> that is a very good question.
Jun-14-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  spinal pat: I was thinking that maybe Carlsen is a great middlegamen/endgame player because he doesn't devote a whole chunk of his time to openining preparation compared to his fellow supergrandmasters?
Jun-14-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <On move 28, why didn't radjabov advance the pawn to c4? After exchanging that pawn was it not equal for white or some drawback here?>

As I mentioned, Carlsen suggested this himself after the game as a way to hold the draw (though after the exchanges on c4 Black still has a slight edge in the resulting rook endgame). He thought that Radjabov, who was already low on time at this stage, was sort of avoiding any committal decisions like that before the time control, and this caused him to play too passively.

Jun-14-12  coolchess1: Thanks Eyal. I did not view Carlsen's press conference. It seemed logical to me to go with that line.
Jun-14-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: A notable feature of this game is the hyper-activity of the black king. First it goes all the way to the Q-side, via e7-d7-c8-b7-b6-c5 to help advancing the c-pawn, and then it starts going back in the other direction all the way to f6, to help advancing the d-pawn (the idea was to allow ...d5 without hanging the e5 pawn after exd5, while the white rook was on e1). But when it reached d7 Radjabov finally decided to do something active and played 42.a4.
Jun-14-12  Hesam7: <Eyal: <But that seems arrogant and insane. If Carlsen works on his openings he won't need to enter inferior positions with the hope of outplaying his opponents [...] And today's game could have ended very differently had Radjabov played slightly better and less passive.>

"Arrogant and insane"?! I'm not talking about opening preparation in general (or Carlsen's supposed approach to it), only about this specific game and the type of position that its opening yields. I don't see that Carlsen entered any clearly inferior position here, it was a normal game in a variation that's based mainly on rather slow positional maneuverings. Of course Radjabov didn't play it so well and could have done better, even before the later stages – that's always the case when one gets with White a slightly inferior (or at least uncomfortable) position at a relatively early stage of the game. But it's not like he missed an obvious opportunity to get a clear advantage.>

I was talking about Carlsen's opening preparation in general.

His current approach is arrogant b/c it is based on the idea of outplaying people in top 10 from a slightly worse or equal position and it is insane because he would improve his results while suffering a lot less over the board, if he worked on his openings. Just recall how his performance when he was working with Kasparov who forced him to work on his openings.

Jun-15-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: Position after 53.Bxd5:


click for larger view

<53...d3+!> is a very accurate intermediate check here, before the recapture of the bishop (and perhaps missed by Radjabov). In case of 53...Kxd5 54.cxd4 exd4 55.Ra5+ Ke4 56.Ra8! the black king will be exposed to checks if it tries to support the central pawns; on the other hand, after 53...d3+ 54.Kd2 Kxd5, 55.Ra5+ doesn't help since after 55...Ke4 the king is defended from checks by the e-pawn.

Jun-15-12  fisayo123: Poor Radjabov, still hasn't stopped losing to his nemesis Carlsen. Mark my words though, this would be one of the great chess rivalries in chess.
Jun-17-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  paulalbert: I had remarked right after this win that it reminded me of a Capablanca win, particularly because of the black pawn structure; but I didn't look up the game. Apparently in the press conference Magnus made a similar reference and <micartouse> identified the game, the Kan vs. Capablanca game in Moscow 1936. I noticed today on Chessbase News, Karsten Mueller analyzes both this and the Kan vs. Capablanca game.
Jun-17-12  ughaibu: Had Carlsen lost, then I guess the game would similarly remind its viewers of a Capablanca loss. . . . to whom?
Jun-17-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  paulalbert: <ughaibu> I don't think you had Lasker vs. Capablanca St. Petersburg 1914 in mind, but I've got to go to my Father's Day outing now, so maybe when I get back tonight someone else will have come up with it.
Jun-17-12  ughaibu: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kMh...
Jun-17-12  Abdooss: http://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail...
Jun-23-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: Position after 51...Be6:


click for larger view

In addition to the <52.Ke2> Bd5 52.Kf3 idea, already mentioned here, Karsten Muller points out in his chessbase article (http://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail...) that <52.Kc1> should be enough to draw: 52...Bd5 (52...d3 53.Ra5) 53.Bxd5 Kxd5 54.cxd4 exd4 55.Ra8 Rg6 56.Re8 Rxg2 57.Re7 d3 58.Rb7 Kd4 59.Kd1 Ke3 60.Re7+ Kf2 61.Rf7+ Kg1 62.Rc7 Rc2 63.Rg7+ and it doesn't seem that Black can make progress. But Radjabov's 52.Kc2? allows that deadly intermediate check on move 53.

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