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Magnus Carlsen vs Sergey Karjakin
Sinquefield Cup (2017), Saint Louis, MO USA, rd 2, Aug-03
Formation: King's Indian Attack (A05)  ·  1-0
ANALYSIS [x]

FEN COPIED

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 8 OF 8 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: <ChessHigherCat: Everybody's always making ridiculous predictions about these guys' whole careers based on a couple games. There are so many unpredictable factors involved in a single game, like lack of sleep, or personal or financial problems or who the hell knows.>

Exactly.

Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  ajk68: 36...gxf5 doesn't appear correct. b4 was probably better.
Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Marmot PFL: The top players usually overcome those distractions or aren't affected much to begin with.
Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  beenthere240: In hindsight, I think that, after 26. Rc6, black must immediately hit back with 26...Ra8. The alternative 26....Nc3 looked intriguing (good square, protects b pawn) didn't address white's threat of blowing open the center. However at that point in the game, both players had about 20 minutes left. Thoughts???
Aug-03-17  Oxnard: Superlative play by Carlsen
Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <CHC: Everybody's always making ridiculous predictions about these guys' whole careers based on a couple games. There are so many unpredictable factors involved in a single game, like lack of sleep, or personal or financial problems or who the hell knows.>

<Marmot: The top players usually overcome those distractions or aren't affected much to begin with.>

When I sit down to play poker, it is all left behind; no time for that stuff. Tough enough to face strong, determined opponents without such distractions. One would think it impossible to play at the very highest levels if external factors were routinely allowed to interfere.

Aug-03-17  ColdSong: Carlsen toys positionnaly with Karjakin.That looks too easy.I'd really wonder what if I was the Russian.
Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Instead of 31...Rc8? 32. Rxc8+ +/- (+1.04 @ 35 depth), Black appears to improve survival chances with 31...exf4 32. Qxf4 Nd1 +/= (+0.45 @ 35 depth, Stockfish 8.)

However, in all fairness, it was extremely difficult to anticipate the strong move 35. f5! +/- (+1.51 @ 38 depth, Stockfish 8) which appears to be decisive.

Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: Dang this kid's good! I don't understand why Carlsen fell behind in their WCC match last year. At least, MC retained the title. That's a good thing because he is clearly superior to SK.
Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: < patzer2: ...

However, in all fairness, it was extremely difficult to anticipate the strong move 35. f5! +/- (+1.51 @ 38 depth, Stockfish 8) which appears to be decisive.>

Which makes me wonder *when* Carlsen found 35.f5. How many moves ahead did he see it?

Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: Mozart strikes again!
Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  SirRuthless: KArjakin got into time trouble, and lost like I said. He's gotta fix that clock issue.
Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <eenthere240: In hindsight, I think that, after 26. Rc6, black must immediately hit back with 26...Ra8. The alternative 26....Nc3 looked intriguing (good square, protects b pawn) didn't address white's threat of blowing open the center.> Stockfish 8 agrees 26...Ra8 = is strongest, but doesn't find 26...Nc3 = to +/= to be significantly worse:

( [Stockfish 8 64] 36 depth:+0.00) 26...Ra8 27.Qc1 Nc3 28.e5 d5 29.Qg5 Qf5 30.f3 Qxg5 31.hxg5 Bf5 32.f4 Bxd3 33.Nb3 Be4 34.Bxe4 dxe4 35.Nxd4 Nd5 36.Rc5 Nxb4 37.Nxb5 Ra2+ 38.Kh3 e3 39.Rc8+ Kh7 40.Rf8 e2 41.Rxf7+ Kg8 42.Rf8+ Kh7 43.Rf7+

( [Stockfish 8 64] 36 depth:+0.10) 26...Rc8 27.Ra6 Nc3 28.Bf4 Be5 29.f3 Be6 30.Bh6 Bh8 31.f4 Bg4 32.f5 gxf5 33.exf5 Qxf5 34.Nb7 Ne2 35.Bf4 Be5 36.Nxd6 Bxf4 37.Nxf5 Bxd2 38.Ne7+ Kg7 39.Nxc8 Be1 40.Nd6 Bxg3+ 41.Kh1 Nc3 42.Bb7 Bxh4 43.Bc8 Bxc8 44.Nxc8 Nd5 45.Nd6 Kf6 46.Nxb5+ Ke5 47.Nd6 Nxb4 48.Nxf7+ Kf4 49.Rd6 Ke3 50.Nh6 Bf2 51.Nf5+ Ke2 52.Kg2 Nxd3 53.Re6+ Kd2 54.Ra6 Kc3 55.Rc6+ Kd2 )

( [Stockfish 8 64] 35 depth:+0.26) 26...Nc3 27.Bf4 Be5 28.Bxe5 dxe5 29.f3 Be6 30.f4 Qe7 31.Rc5 exf4 32.Qxf4 Nd1 33.Nc6 Qd7 34.e5 Ra8 35.Nxd4 Ra2 36.Nxe6 Qxe6 37.d4 Nf2 38.d5 Ng4+ 39.Kg1 Ra1+ 40.Bf1 Qe8 41.e6 fxe6 42.dxe6 Re1 43.Rg5 Kh7 44.Qf7+ Qxf7 45.exf7 Kg7 46.Kg2 Ne5 47.Bxb5 Kxf7 48.Kf2 Re4 49.Be2 Kf6 50.b5 Rb4 51.Kg2 Rb1 =.

P.S.: Black needed every edge he could get in this game. So 26...Ra8 = might have been what was necessary to hold the draw.

At the end of the analysis of 26...Nc3, the computer shows the position is dead level (0.00 @ 50 depth, Stockfish 8.)

So it's possible 26...Nc3 with strong and best play doesn't make any difference.

Of course with time pressure mounting, I don't doubt 26...Ra8 would have been the more prudent choice.

Aug-03-17  Mirovsk: He, sauron, the anaconda, for whom the poets will write...
Aug-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  beenthere240: Thanks for that analysis. I remember MC thinking for about 15 minutes and then playing Kh2! Then he took on b5 and launched his attack. Remarkable game.
Aug-03-17  Mirovsk: Karjakin made his first mistake playing 13. ...Na6? this allowed 14. Be3!...and the Knight was poisoned... and then 17...Na4? the poor Knight stayed put until 26. ...Nc3 it was too late.
Aug-04-17  Ulhumbrus: If after 26...Nc3 White does not have to wait for his rook to become a target but can turn it into a weapon by eg the move Rc5, this suggests 26...Rc8
Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Pedro Fernandez: <<not not>: How about cynical bishop c6 to take that lonely pawn> All black pieces are in a miserable position.
Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: The knight on c3 reminded me of this epic from 2013. Carlsen vs Karjakin, 2013
Aug-04-17  rayoflight: Hi.
Karjakian lost on time?
Aug-04-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: Karjakin is just too passive. The whole Nd2-Nb3-Na5 manuevre is an example.
Aug-05-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  RookFile: These slow buildups can be really hard to play against.
Aug-06-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: <Calli: Karjakin is just too passive. The whole Nd2-Nb3-Na5 manuevre is an example.>

allows

<RookFile: These slow buildups can be really hard to play against.>

Carlsen just loves this kind of game. He plays them flawlessly. The waste of tempi by Karjakin eventually allows White to plant a rook on c6, and that's it for Black.

Aug-11-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: <thegoodanarchist> - <Which makes me wonder *when* Carlsen found 35.f5. How many moves ahead did he see it?>

I don't know about Carlsen, but I started itching to play f5 soon after 30.f4 was played. Of course it's not good then, thematic though it is. MC prepared it neatly, getting his Knight to e5 and deflecting the Black Queen from e7. Then f5 becomes very strong.

Sep-13-17  anjumskhan: Karjakin didn't bother to play f5 all through the game.

Black's f5 is the trademark of KGD. You have to play it, no matter what. Karjakin kept replying Carlsen which was his mistake. Instead of replying he must have attacked with f5 undermining e4.

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