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Levon Aronian vs Ding Liren
World Cup (2017) (rapid), Tbilisi GEO, rd 7, Sep-27
Queen's Gambit Declined: Hastings Variation (D30)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
Sep-27-17  Dirkster: Let the kibitzing begin!! (I got nuthin'...) Hey, I just woke up - gimme a break, okay?!?
Sep-27-17  kramnov: Ding liren is finally cracked but that's ok, he trully show the spirit being a super GM
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  An Englishman: Good Morning: Looks like an Alekhine game, with an opening innovation (12.Rae1), a "little" pawn sacrifice, the sudden shift from the center to the King side, and the surprise moves (Ng6). The only reason this game doesn't have as many sacrifices is that Ding Liren refused to take them. Certainly didn't hurt Aronian's chances that Black played without a Ra8--White's extra Rook looks very useful in the final position.
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  offramp: NOTE TO SELF: Avoid rapid chess with Aronian.
Sep-27-17  Albanius: In the final position,
30..Qg4 (..Qe2 31 Bxd3 and Rh6#)
31 Rh6+! Kxf5
32 Qxf6+ Ke4
33 Bd3#
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gilmoy: <12.Rae1> is actually a clearance tempo for the <bishop thing 13.Bb1>, an ideal post for a K-side attack. The LSB never moves again, yet combines perfectly with <15.Qd3> to threaten the Q entry, which goads Black to wreck his own K-side.

13.(or even 12).Bc2 would be slightly inferior because it mildly congests the d1-b3 diagonal, and Black's <27..d3> would "put the question" to it, costing another tempo. Instead, White insidiously uses <10..e5 12..exd4> as two free tempi for the pawn, and never bothers to recapture -- it's not worth a tempo!

This line has the feel of a rapid gambit, i.e. known to be "unsound", and therefore good enough to spring OTB on short time. Aronian (and many other GMs? excluding Ding, alas) might have already analyzed it to a draw, and figured that a super-GM could find the draw OTB with a 1-hour long think, so it's not worth trying in classical. Then he holds it up his sleeve and waits for a short game that matters.

Topalov once did it to him with that Nxf7 sac (which was duly refuted later that same evening!), so Aronian surely appreciates that it's not easy to remain calm OTB against the other guy's home-prepped ambush smirk. Ding seems especially vulnerable to this because he's not afraid to fight back with his own crazy moves, until he's completely wrecked.

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Analysis by Houdini 4

<21.Ngf5+> Kh8 22.Qb3 c5 23.Nxc8 Raxc8 24.Qxb7 Rc7 25.Qa6 Bb6 26.Qa3 Rd8 27.Nxh6 g4 28.Nf5 Nxh5 29.g3 Rc6 30.Kg2 Re6 31.Rxe6 fxe6 32.Rh1 Qg5 33.Ne7 Qxe7 34.Rxh5+ Kg8 35.Be4 Rf8 36.Qd3 Rf7 37.Rh4 Rg7 38.Qe2 Kf8 39.Rxg4 Qf6 40.Rxg7 Qxg7 41.a3 Ke7 42.b4 a6 43.Bd3 Kd6 44.Qe4 Qf7 45.f3 Qg7 ± (1.24) Depth: 22 not dpa

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