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Levon Aronian vs Ian Nepomniachtchi
Sinquefield Cup (2017), Saint Louis, MO USA, rd 1, Aug-02
English Opening: Symmetrical. Three Knights Variation (A34)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  technical draw: Amazing. I couldn't guess a single move by Aronian in the critical positions. In fact I thought his moves were blunders. My life as a 1700 player, sigh.
Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: <Art is not what you see, but what you make others see.>

<~Edgar Degas~>

The above is not a gassy quote.

Aronian is playing great chess.

Aug-02-17  Mirovsk: This one is magnificent....
Aug-02-17  mathlover: fantastic game by Levon.
Aug-02-17  Willchess: oh MG Levon is some player,amazing
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: I think Kasparov said Aronian was the one to be feared most, and all these guys are great but when you see a game like this you have to agree with Mr. K.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sokrates: Agreed - this is a fantastic game by Aronian. And you're right <technical draw> about the unexpected moves. For me they began with 10.♖h4 - a move I would never discover at the board. When Aronian is at his best he is a true artist of our game.
Aug-03-17  SirRuthless: Why does Aronian do this in closed invitationals that aren't in the candidates cycle but then find a way screw up his candidates cycle every time? He brilliant when it doesn't matter as much.

Very aesthetically pleasing win.

Aug-03-17  CountryGirl: Aronian is certainly one of the most creative of the top players. (Ivanchuk without the slight crazy streak?!)
Aug-03-17  Al2009: This game is MARVELOUS!
THESE are the games we want to see!!
Thanks a lot Levon!
You deserve the 2017 prize for the most beautiful game!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: Wow, not the game I was expecting when I saw th English opening. I was casually wondering how far in book the opening ventured as I clicked through and figured Rh4 probably signaled the end, if not earlier. Correct me if you know better.

<Sir Ruthless> guys like Morozevich, Nezhmetdinov, and Bronstein seem to me such chess artists that the pressure of having to win to gain the ultimate competitive prize diminishes their raison d'etre for playing chess, which lies in the art of the battle.

Premium Chessgames Member
  piltdown man: Breathtaking.
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: <technical draw: Amazing. I couldn't guess a single move by Aronian in the critical positions. >

Me neither. It took me a minute just to understand why Black cannot play 10...Qxa3

Games like this reinforce my understanding that I am hopeless at chess. Time to take up Parcheesi.

Is "" still available as a domain name?

Premium Chessgames Member
  jaime gallegos: Wow Aronian!
You, you, you're good you!
(Impersonating Robert de Niro) :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  sbevan: <luzhin: Pure Aronian in its verve and creativity. At first blush 13...Qxa3 14.Qxd7 Nb4 looks fine for Black. But then 15.Bc4!! and if 15...Nc2+ 16.Ke2 Nxa1 17.Qxe7 White,a Rook down, is winning (eg. 17...Bxc3 18.Ne5!)>

Thank you.

Aug-03-17  Ulhumbrus: If the attack 9...Qa5 can be answered with 10 Rh4 and Black can't take White's queen's bishop it means that Black has placed his queen on the side of the board for nothing. In that case instead of 9...Qa5 a developing move like 9...0-0 may be better.
Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: "After Qb3 I couldn't believe that castle short won't work," Nepomniachtchi said. "It's a little bit annoying that I'm losing the game in a moronic way...This is insanely stupid."

But to play 11...0-0 quickly and then think 45 minutes on the next unforced move points to another factor.

Knowing a move exists does not automatically mean that it has been studied in depth. Aronian has a special knack for penetrating into the logic of computer moves and following them up with touches of his own.

Nepo knew that the engines thought the position was still equal after 11 Qb3, but wanted an easier life with a safe King, and was not willing to put in the work before making the move to know what he would play.

Aug-03-17  devere: The modern style is the brilliancies are in the footnotes. One possible line was 13...Qxa3 14.Qxd7 Nb4 15.Bc4 Nc2+ 16.Ke2 Nxa1 17.Ng5 Nc2 18.Rh8+ Bxh8 19.Qh3 Kg7 20.Qh7+ Kf6 21.Ne4+ Kf5 22.Qh3+ Kxe4 23.Qf3+ Ke5 24.Qf4#

click for larger view

Aug-04-17  WorstPlayerEver: 11... Rc8 is probably better.
LEVON was #2 for awhile! With such a BRILLIANT Victory, who knows where he goes from here? I would LOVE to SEE MAGNUS WIN,
Barring that... AMERICA's BIG THREE would be GREAT! Then ARONIAN!!! AKK
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jambow: <For me they began with 10.♖h4 - a move I would never discover at the board. When Aronian is at his best he is a true artist of our game.> Indeed took me a minute to see the queen would be trapped. What a creative defense develope and inactivate your opponents prime piece too.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jambow: <Aronian is certainly one of the most creative of the top players. (Ivanchuk without the slight crazy streak?!)>

Or the distant stare into vast expanse of the universe, but that makes Ivanchuk eccentric or simply crazy.

Aug-09-17  Altairvega: I humbly apologize. Aronian is Armenian of course. The Leon of Armenia, not of Russia.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: A truly wonderful game. Magnificently imaginative play by Aronian.

I happened to see, on another page from this event, somebody trying to argue that a win by his favourite player was the best game of the tournament.

Aronian's win here puts that miserable claim in perspective. And shows the absurdities some kibitzers will go to in trying to talk up their heroes.

Jan-11-18  JohnBoy: Absolutely wonderful play - tremendously creative & powerful. A gift from Aronian.
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