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Hikaru Nakamura vs Magnus Carlsen Speed Chess Championship (2017/18) (blitz), INT, rd 4, Jan-03
Scotch Game: Malaniuk Variation (C45)  ·  0-1


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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member

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As the computers (and pointed out, 33.Ng5 is winning, but I think that is not so easy to see, and Nakamura still had a big advantage after 33.Nxf6.

What really baffled me was what happened from here, after 51....Rd7.

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After something obvious like 52.Kg3 White is going to have to give one of his pawns back, but he should still have good winning chances. Instead he continued 52.f6+? Kxf6 53.a3?! Nxd5 54.Rd3 Ke5 55.Rxd5+? Nxd5 56.Bxd5 Kxd5.

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So White had given back both pawns and reached a pure king and pawn ending where it was strictly a question whether Carlsen would win or whether it would be a draw. They both made mistakes from here (understandably) but it's hard to believe they ever got to this position. I guess Naka was led astray by the outside passed pawn?

Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: I don't understand why white didn't want to win a pawn with 54. Rc6+ Ke5 55. Bxd5 followed by Rxb6
Jan-08-18  JustAnotherMaster: Incredible display of mental DOMINANCE
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: That's why he didn't want to win a pawn?
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <Chesshire Cat> -- the computer thinks it is a pretty easy draw for Black after ...Kxd5 and ...Ke4. Nakamura must have thought he had winning chances in the pawn ending.
Premium Chessgames Member
  zborris8: This is 5|2 Blitz.
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