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Georg Meier vs Vladimir Kramnik
Dortmund Sparkassen (2013), Dortmund GER, rd 4, Jul-29
Catalan Opening: Closed Variation (E06)  ·  0-1
ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Jul-29-13  Conrad93: The queen pseudo-sacrifice isn't that brilliant.

The follow up to it is however.

Jul-29-13  Everett: A very clear example of the importance of studying and solving mates. It is never a waste of time.
Jul-29-13  notyetagm: G Meier vs Kramnik, 2013

<Illogic: Qxf6!! I thought it was a relay error when I first saw it>

A *stupendous* example of the <SQUARE CLEARANCE> tactical theme combined with <WEAK BACK RANK>.

Game Collection: SQUARE CLEARANCE

Jul-29-13  csmath: The idea of mate through back rank was available already in 30. ... Nd5 but Kramnik did not use that move.

The combination is nevertheless spectacular because it really counteracts white covering defence of f7. Very pretty game for Kramnik, nothing extreme just fine game overall. It simply underlines the difference of class of these two guys. Kramnik is Kramnik and Meier will never be Kramnik. :-)

Jul-29-13  Lupara: Meier's decision to play the Catalan against Kramnik was brave. Kramnik is one of the leading exponents of the White side of the Catalan.
Jul-29-13  csmath: Don't say.
Jul-30-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: 32...Qxf6! Wotta shot!

White is down two pawns, but should he play on a bit?

Jul-30-13  notyetagm: <Lupara: Meier's decision to play the Catalan against Kramnik was brave. Kramnik is one of the leading exponents of the White side of the Catalan.>

I thought it was rather foolish myself for exactly the reason you gave in the second sentence.

Do you really want to play an opening in which your opponent is the leading authority <IN THE WHOLE ENTIRE WORLD>??

Jul-30-13  Jamboree: Let's turn the focus back two moves earlier, with the seeming atrocious blunder 30. ... Qf4??!. I saw that and wondered why white simply didn't play 31. e3!?, which for all intents and purposes seems to force black's queen to abandon the defense of f7, as 31. ... Qe5 or 31. ... Qh6 seem to be the only two moves to save the queen. After either one, 32. Qxf7+ looks winning for white.

But then I saw what at first I thought was the incredible zwischenzug point behind the ultra-sneaky move 30. Qf4!?, because if then 31. e3 black has 31. ... Nd5!?, leading to a similar back-rank combo in the game line: 32. exf4 Nxf4+ 33. Kf1...but then it dawned on me that in this line 33. ...Rb1+ is NOT mate because of either 34. Qd1 or 34. Bd1, interposing (possible because in this line the pawn has moved to e3).

So then: if all this is true, why DIDN'T white just play 31. e3!?, driving the queen away from the defense of f7 and getting a winning endgame?

What am I missing?

Jul-30-13  5hrsolver: <Jamboree> 31.e3 h3 drops the bishop
Jul-30-13  Emmykarpov: Wow if it took me this long to figure out 33 gxf6 Nf4+ 34) Rb1# den what's my rating?
Jul-30-13  Jamboree: 5hrsolver: D'oh! Of course. I was focusing too hard on crazy combinations and overlooked the simple tactic. Story of my life.
Jul-30-13  usuario x: I just noticed in 4 classical games they have played kramnik have won every of them in a nice style
Jul-30-13  Ulhumbrus: 10...Ra7 threatens 11...Be4 followed by 12...Bxf3 and 13...Qxd4. The move 11 Rc1 does not answer this threat.
Jul-30-13  csmath: <Do you really want to play an opening in which your opponent is the leading authority <IN THE WHOLE ENTIRE WORLD>??>

Not unless you have something he does not know. :-)

But you gotta be good and Meier is not.

Look at the opening, he achieved absolutely nothing and got outplayed in an original middlegame play. What better proof one needs to see that Kramnik is simply a class better player?

One has to congratulate Kramnik, this is clearly a display of his abilities. Nothing to rave about but clean and very logical game. It could easily go into a textbook as an example of solid and principled play.

Jul-30-13  Nerwal: Kramnik has a reputation of being a correct, classical player, but the number of games in which he has played h4-h5 or h5-h4 to gain some initiative is really impressive.
Jul-30-13  csmath: He did play h5 here once he completely equalized and as a matter of fact got more active and harmonious position. I think pawn on g3 invites that move anyway. So that seems to me a perfectly logical move in the position. It creates vent for his own king while challenging white's castle. Almost a textbook move.

White would ordinarily answer h4 which of course was not possible because of bishop on c5 and thus Kramnik was able to probe further with 24. ... h4, further weakening white's castling.

Looks very "classical" to me.

Jul-30-13  notyetagm: G Meier vs Kramnik, 2013

<5hrsolver: <Jamboree> 31.e3 h3 drops the bishop>

Game Collection: REMOVE THE GUARD (ATTACKED) 31 e2-e3?? leaves behind f3-bishop, remove guard 31 .. h4-h3+!

Jul-30-13  notyetagm: G Meier vs Kramnik, 2013

Game Collection: LEFT BEHIND (DRAWBACK CHESS -- M. ASHLEY) 31 e2-e3?? leaves behind f3-bishop, remove guard 31 .. h4-h3+!

Jul-30-13  notyetagm: G Meier vs Kramnik, 2013

Game Collection: DEFENDERS ARE HUGE F'ING TARGETS! 31 e2-e3?? leaves behind f3-bishop, remove guard 31 .. h4-h3+!

Jul-30-13  notyetagm: G Meier vs Kramnik, 2013

Game Collection: THE UNDERRATED REMOVAL OF THE GUARD -- HEISMAN 31 e2-e3?? h2-h3+! drives off g2-king dfndr of now loose bishop

Jul-30-13  notyetagm: G Meier vs Kramnik, 2013

Game Collection: SQUARE CLEARANCE: GETTING THE HELL OUT OF THE WA Y 32 ... Qf4xNf6!! vacates f4-sq for ... Nd5-d4+,mating on back!

Jul-30-13  Everett: Jul-30-13 < Nerwal: Kramnik has a reputation of being a correct, classical player, but the number of games in which he has played h4-h5 or h5-h4 to gain some initiative is really impressive.>

Maybe, but he is playing it on move 23, not in the opening like Larsen.

Jul-30-13  dumbgai: As for Meier trying to beat Kramnik with the Catalan, there's always the psychological thrill of beating a great champion at his own game. Meier gave it a good effort but ultimately got outplayed by the superior player.
Sep-30-17  Emmykarpov: Thanks a Million <notyetagm> even after fours years, your post still helps a lot
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