< Earlier Kibitzing · PAGE 6 OF 6 ·
|Dec-13-11|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Kramnik vs Carlsen, 2011 Kramnik's main mistake may have been 18 c5. Here is the argument.|
It is understandable that with Black deprived of counterplay and backward in development Kramnik should have wanted to attack quickly by c5.
However Black has not only been deprived of counterplay on the King side, White has in fact taken the initiaive there from Black, so that White has the initiative on both wings.
Now on either wing, the greater the advantage which White has over Black there, the better the chances of success are for his attack
White can muster in fact a greater superiority of material force over Black on the King side than he can arrange on the Queen side.
Therefore it is on the King side that White must proceed energetically and on the Queen side where he must play more conservatively.
Therefore 18 c5? followed the wrong policy. On the Queen side it was better to play more cautiously and to attack the King side instead.
So I thought before.
However the analysis given by <Hesam7> suggests another possibility.
What if the Queen side attack c5 assists White's King side attack instead of diverting resources away from it?
If the analysis given by <Hesam7> is right, this suggests that Kramnik's mistake was not 18 c5 but 20 Qh5 instead of 20 Qg4 and for this reason: Because it is after 20 Qg4 that White's Queen side attack is able to assist properly White's King side attack.
It is after the move 20 Qg4 that White's Queen side attack which includes moves such c5 and Rb1 followed by the sacrifice Rxb7! is able to act properly in concert with White's King side attack which includes moves such as fxg6.
In other words, it is the choice of the move 20 Qg4 instead of 20 Qh5 which enables White's Queen side attack to cooperate properly with White's King side attack.
I am not sure yet whether the analysis given by <Hesam7> is right or not. It may be. The position warrants examining further.
|Jan-07-12|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Lasker vs Salwe, 1909 in the position reached after 27...Qe8 two points brought out by Nimzovich's notes are as follows.|
1. Black's Rook on e8 is potentially overworked. If it has go to to g8 in reply to Rg4 it cannot then tie White's Queen's Rook to the defence of the e4 pawn so that this Rook becomes free to go to d1 to attack Black's d6 pawn.
2. Black's N on f7 is potentially overworked. If it has to go to h6 in order to obstruct the h file in reply to Nf4 it cannot then defend the d6 pawn.
|Jan-18-12|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Carlsen vs Aronian, 2012 the move 12...a5 may be the losing mistake because it makes the position more dangerous for Black's King in every part of the board.|
On the chessdom website GM Naiditsch says of the position after Carlsen has set up a pawn centre that Aronian has no counterplay at all.
This gives us an indication of the explanation for Aronian's defeat.
After White has set up his pawn centre, Aronian has, by playing the flank pawn advances ...h5 and ...a5, made it more difficult for Black to play the pawn advances ...f7-f5 or ...c7-c5 so as to attack White's centre.
Another thing is that after 15 e4 the move 15...dxe4 concedes the centre and an advantage in space to White. It is a suboptimal move according to the chessdom analysis. An alternative to 15...dxe4 is to try to hold on to the centre by eg 15...Nb6.
It is true that whatever Black does choose at move 15, by having played the flank pawn advances ...h5 and ...c5 he has made it more difficult for himself to play the pawn advances ...f7-f5 or ...c7-c5 or ....f7-f6 against White's centre.
|Mar-25-12|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Bisguier vs Reshevsky, 1957 Reshevsky's comment on the move 18...Nac5 is < 18...Nac5! Black offers a pawn which White unwisely accepts>|
On the move 19 gxh5 to quote from his remarks < 19 gxh5? Correct is 19 Ba2 and Black has to play very precisely to keep out of trouble...>
Reshevsky's comment on the move 22...Ne5 is < By giving up a pawn, Black has the initiative. The two bishops and the exposed position of the White King are more than sufficient compensation for the pawn sacrificed>
This suggests the following question: Why does White's acceptance of the pawn transfer the initiative to Black?
If we look at the position after the move 22...Ne5 we can see that Black has removed White's king's bishop so that it no longer controls the square g8.
Black's King enjoys therefore the use of the square g8 as a flight square, so that the check Qh4+ is no longer much of a threat.
With White's KB controlling the square g8, the move Qh4+ would indeed be a threat.
Thus the loss of potential control of just one flight square around Black's King - an important flight square, however, as it is the only one Black's King has - has the effect of transferring the initiative from White to Black.
|Jul-15-12|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game J Gustafsson vs Kramnik, 2012 Black has not played the move ...Nbd7 before he makes the exchange 8...exd4.|
One point of this is that after 9 Nxd4 Re8 10 f3 Black's queen is not obstructed on the d file by a knight on d7 and so she is able to support the pawn advance 10...d5. This seems useful to know about.
|Jul-28-12|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Bacrot vs Wang Hao, 2012 if instead of the advances 15 e4 and 16 d5 as played White prepares and plays the pawn advances c4 and d5 this will keep his d5 pawn in contact with his greater pawn mass and at the same time preserve the greater pawn mass. Can one suggest a justification for this?|
One answer is that if we look at the position reached in the game after 17 exd5, the d5 pawn is not only isolated but also not very strong. Black in fact ends up winning it and gains a draw.
If in the position after 17 exd5 we transfer the c3 pawn to e3 we can see that the d5 pawn can be supported by the advance e4.
That is not all. It is true that after 17 exd5 as in the game white has a c pawn which may advance to c4. However it is opposed by a Black c pawn and in fact Black plays ...c4 and prevent c4. An e3 pawn would lack a black opponent to obstruct the advance e3-e4.
All this suggests a reason why Philidor advises capturing so as to preserve the greater pawn mass. It is that that the greater pawn mass lacks opposing pawns which may obstruct a supportive pawn advance.
|Aug-20-12|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Botvinnik vs Chekhover, 1935 the following comments in parentheses are by Max Euwe from his book <Meet the masters> (translated by L Prins and B H Wood from Euwe's book <Zoo schaken zij>)|
Before the move 19 Nd1: < A very familiar type of position has been reached. White has <hanging> pawns at d4 and c4 and is more or less compelled to play for a King'a side attack, which has, however, under the circumstances,every chance of succeeding. White usually works for d4-d5 or f4-f5 in such positions. Botvinnik tackles the problem in an altogether different way: he brings his QKt over to the King's wing, where it decisively strengthens the attack. Each of his next few moves deserves an exclamation mark.>
On the move 22 Ng5: <The piano of the opening passed into a crescendo in the middle game and now becomes a fortissimo of attack. Throughout the next ten moves sacrificial combinations are always in the air; the black king's stronghold is smashed open with titanic power>
At the end of the game Euwe remarks < Though Botvinnik is primarily a position player, and though his construction of the game differs vastly from that of Alekhine, his play reveals, in his discernment of attacking chances, the greatest possible resemblance to the brilliant style of the world champion.>
An alternative to 19...Ra7 is the pawn sacrifice 19...b5! 20 cxb5 axb5 21 Bxb5 Ba3. There are three justifications for this:
1. White's a pawn and d4 pawn are both isolated and this gives Black at least partial compensation for the pawn.
2. White's 19th move Nd1 withdraws the knight to the back rank and disconnects the rooks, and this suggests Black's opening lines
3. This is at any rate preferable by far to having Black's King succumb to a mating attack including a king hunt as in the game.
|Dec-30-12|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Verlinsky vs Lasker, 1925 in his manual of chess Lasker gives the move 6...Na6 an exclamation mark. |
In the position after 14...Rad8 White has the bishop pair.
Lasker manages however to bring about a position in which White's bishop pair counts for nothing.
Lasker does this in the following way: After the black squared bishops are exchanged following the advance ...c5 White's king's bishop enjoys no scope.
This suggests the double question of how the player facing the bishop pair may bring about such a state of affairs, and how the player possessing the bishop pair may prevent it.
It is conceivable that just one or two corrections may make all the difference to the side which can manage them.
For example suppose that taking the sequence of moves 13-16 as played in the game, White can manage the move Bf4 in place of the move Be3 and perhaps the move Kh1 in place of the move f3, while Black plays the same moves.
Then one variation is 13 Rfd1 Qa5 14 Bf4 Rad8 15 Kh1 c5 and now 16 Nb5 threatens 17 Bc7 or 17 Nd6 while 16 dxc5 Bxc5 17 Nb5 threatens 18 Bc7 and 18 Nd6.
That is a beginning.
|Feb-02-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Carlsen vs Nakamura, 2013 one point which may be instructive as well as interesting is that Carlsen won without opening either central file.|
In the final position both of the files remain obstructed.
It is along the diagonals h5-e8, a2-g8 and h4-d8 that Black's king has become subjected to attack.
This suggests that in order to gain a winning attack against an opposing king in the centre it may be not necessary to open a central file.
The opening instead of diagonals leading to the king may be sufficient.
|Mar-21-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: This is a link to the Houdini analysis page of the official website for the 2013 London candidates' tournament:
|Apr-21-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: This is a link to the live games page for the 2013 Alekhine memorial tournament which begins today in the Louvre:|
|May-03-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Aronian vs M Vachier-Lagrave, 2013 if after 9...Nc6 White is able to play 10 d5, this suggests the exchange 9...cd 10 cd Nc6 after which, according to Fine, this pawn formation is always favourable for Black.|
Fine says that every exchange of pieces takes the game closer to an endgame which favours Black's queen side pawn majority.
Recent games have indicated however a problem with this.
In the ending Black has indeed a queen side pawn majority. but White has more space.
White's advantage in space may result in White's king gaining a considerable lead in development over Black's king. In fact White may end up playing with an extra king.
What the eventual judgment of history is remains to be seen.
|May-09-13|| ||Eggman: Hello, Ulhumbrus. Thanks for responding to my query about that Robert Byrne quote. I've never heard of his book about the 1974 Candidates. Does this book cover all the candidates matches, or just those 3 matches in which Karpov was involved?|
|May-10-13|| ||Monocle: In the game Carlsen vs Anand, 2013 you said:|
<The move 11...h6 is open to question, as it moves a pawn in the opening. White's king's knight is going to head for e3 to control d5. Can Black afford to do nothing to hinder the manoeuvre? Suppose that Black tries instead 11..Qc7. Then on 12 0-0 Black has the skewer 12..Bc4>
I would like to point out that 11...h6 contributes to the fight for control of the d5 square. Black would like to play ...Nf6, but white can play Bg5 followed by Bxf6 and Nd5, and black will be unable to contest the d5 square with his bad dark squared bishop, which is a common theme in this type of structure. In the game, after 11...h6 Anand is able to conserve his knight and exchange the dark squared bishops.
I don't think the plan of ...Qc7 and ...Bc4 really does much to stop white's plans, or increase black's control of d5. The queen is exposed on c7, and the bishop can easily be driven away from c4, e.g. 11... Qc7 12. Be3 Bc4 13. Qd2, and white can follow up with b3, driving the bishop back to e6, and then Rc1, whereupon black will have to move his queen as well. Then, in order to play ...Nf6, black will have to play ...h6 anyway. So it seems that ...Qc7 and ...Bc4 will just lose time, compared to playing ...h6 straight away.
|May-11-13|| ||xanadu: Hi Ulhumbrus: in the game Anand vs Topalov (Norway 2013), you made a critical comment to Black 12...b5, since it does not prepear counter attack in the centre (d5). Do you prefear 12...Qc7 or 12...Nb6 instead? My difficult in that position when playing Black is that Queen-side attack looks slow and centre breaking only possible if sacrifying the d-pawn (you mentioned something related to that also). I would like to know your opinion, if you have time. Thanks!!|
|May-11-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: <Eggman: Hello, Ulhumbrus. Thanks for responding to my query about that Robert Byrne quote. I've never heard of his book about the 1974 Candidates. Does this book cover all the candidates matches, or just those 3 matches in which Karpov was involved?> It covers all of the candidates matches for that cycle.|
|May-11-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: <xanadu: Hi Ulhumbrus: in the game Anand vs Topalov (Norway 2013), you made a critical comment to Black 12...b5, since it does not prepear counter attack in the centre (d5). Do you prefear 12...Qc7 or 12...Nb6 instead? My difficult in that position when playing Black is that Queen-side attack looks slow and centre breaking only possible if sacrifying the d-pawn (you mentioned something related to that also). I would like to know your opinion, if you have time. Thanks!!> I made not a critical comment but an observation to the effect that White could make a type of response to a flank pawn advance ( play in the centre) which Black could not make. I will have to take a further look at the game to see whether Black can prepare action in the centre if he cannot take it immediately|
|May-19-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Karjakin vs Topalov, 2013 in the position after 26...Kf8 suppose that White wants to offer the sacrifice Nd4.|
If Black accepts it this displaces his e pawn and so opens the e file. This suggests that White must make it unhealthy for Black to open the e file, so suppose we place White's queen on e4 and the queen's rook on e1. Then on Qe8+ black's king can go to g7, so we want to take the g file away from black. Suppose we play g3. Then with White's queen on e4 as well, h4 is attacked thrice and on ...hxg3, h4 attacks the bishop on g5 which obstructs the g file. if the bishop moves, we have the g file.
This suggests the plan of 27 Qe4, followed by Re1 and then g3 and then h4 and then Nd4!! followed by Qe8 mate.
If however Black plays differently White will to have a find a way to win differently.
|May-19-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: This is a link to the live games page on the TWIC website: http://www.theweekinchess.com/live|
|May-27-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game G Andruet vs Spassky, 1988 after 28...Qf3!! 29 gxf3 Ne5xf3+ 30 Kh1 Black checkmates the white king not with any single move but with a pair of moves.|
The first move of the pair is the move 31...Bh3 and the second move of the pair, namely, 32...Bg2 mate.
Black's concluding combination is subtler still than that, as the resource occurs only after White accepts the offer of a queen.
|Sep-23-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: Here is a link to the official website for the match in Madras: http://chennai2013.fide.com/|
|Sep-23-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: In the game Tal vs Spassky, 1979 the move 10...d5 appears to smash White's centre but after 11 cd cd White ignores the attack by 12 Bg5! and now to borrow Hans Kmoch's humorous remark in his parody of "My system" <It is not White's e pawn which is attacked by Black's d pawn but Black's d pawn which is attacked by White's e pawn. A tremendous difference!>|
More seriously, the move 12 Bg5! pins Black's knight and tilts the scales in White's favour with respect to the fight over the point d5
Morphy may have employed this stratagem - that of not answering directly an attack but doing something else that is useful instead - in one of his games.
|Nov-21-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: Here is a link to Kasparov's twitter page: https://twitter.com/Kasparov63|
|Nov-22-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: It seems to me that in game nine Carlsen displayed greater proficiency in the art of defence than Anand displayed proficiency in the art of attack. Earlier he had outplayed Anand in games five and six.|
Some have suggested that Carlsen was able to defend like a machine and to come up with computer like moves.
One explanation is that Carlsen had, before this match, gained training and practice against a computer playing just such positions as the one he got as Black in game nine, or in games five and six, at any rate a greater amount of training and practice than Anand
If Carlsen had gained more of such training and practice than Anand, it is not hard to guess what the result would be: Carlsen would play such positions with greater proficiency than Anand.
If this is so, why did Anand not do this, at least to the extent that Carlsen did?
One explanation is that in some way Anand was misled by his experience against Kasparov and Kramnik. He thought mistakenly that because he fell into opening preparation in 1995 while Kasparov suffered this fate in 2000 as Kramnik did in 2008 therefore Carlsen would do so here.
If this is so, there were two things wrong with this view.
Firstly, it would only work if and when Carlsen made such choices as gave Anand the opportunity.
Secondly, Kasparov said that the people who said that openings were his strength forgot that he had to find the right moves in the middle game and ending after the opening!
Carlsen did fall into Anand's preparation in game nine but he may have had greater training and practice at handling the type of position which came out of it.
In fact Anand may have suspected this himself before the match, if a story is true that Anand said before the match that there were serious gaps in his knowledge or preparation in which case perhaps he could have had something like this in mind. I do not know however whether the story is true or not.
If the story is true, there is no easy or quick remedy, because the remedy then is for Anand to increase his proficiency. He will simply have to increase his knowledge and skill and so raise its level, just as he had to do in order to reach his present level from a lower level.
That means not just a great deal of exertion but the right kind of exertion.
Now let us consider another possible explanation: Anand made the mistake of opening with 1 e4 instead of with d4, and this enabled Carlsen to escape Anand's preparation.
Had Anand forgotten how effective the Berlin wall was against 1 e4? If not, this suggests that he was not worried about getting only a draw with White in games two and four, partly because he was confident that he could draw with Black.
However his loss in game five upset completely all of his plans, and probably his mood as well.
When Anand played games six and nine he was upset and may have not been playing at full strength.
That suggests that the match was lost essentially after game five. Anand's errors in Games six and nine followed from it.
If Anand had opened games two and four with 1 d4 instead of 1 e4, the opening seen in game nine might have been seen in games two or four.
In that case what would the result of the match have been? I do not know.
Perhaps the best advice for Anand is to be objective and to search for the true reasons for his losses.
|Dec-04-13|| ||Ulhumbrus: Carlsen is like Bobby Fischer: anyone could lose to him. However I am not sure that Anand had to lose this match. Giri has indicated a reason why Kramnik could have been right to say that Anand was afraid of Carlsen, more than he should have been.
Giri said that in game after game Anand underrated his side of the position, in press conferences.|
Thus in game five he said that ...Rd4 was a losing move although according to Giri it was an excellent move which equalized.
In game two Anand was reluctant to test Carlsen's Caro-Kann by playing to win, and agreed a draw, after which he lost the match heavily. In 1974 Spassky gave Karpov a casual draw in game 2 after a Caro-Kann and then went on to lose the match heavily. Perhaps this is not a coincidence.
Anand may have been misled by his experiences against Kasparov and Kramnik. He thought that Carlsen would fall into his opening preparation.
However there are two flaws in this point of view.
Firstly, it works only if the opponent makes such choices as give the player the opportunity.
Secondly, Kasparov said that the people who said that his strength lay in his opening preparation forgot that he had to find the right moves in the middlegame and endgame after the opening!
It is possible that Carlsen had gained greater training and practice than Anand in just the types of position which Anand lost in the fifth, sixth and ninth games.
If Carlsen had gained greater training and practice than Anand in these types of position it is not hard to guess what the result would be. He would have attained to greater proficiency in the handling of such positions.
In the ninth game Carlsen fell into Anand's preparation but handled it with greater proficiency and won.
One very serious mistake which Anand's team made was to agree to play without adjournments. In all of the games he lost, that is, in games five, six and nine Anand may have made mistakes because of fatigue in the fifth hour of play.
Despite being over forty years old Anand could get away with this against earlier opponents, but Carlsen plays well enough for this to become a serious problem in the fifth hour of play.
Against Carlsen, the seven hour sessions were too long for a player in the fifth decade of his life.
Anand's team would have been advised better to try to gain agreement to the traditional three hour sessions with adjournments.
The purpose of seven hour sessions is to prevent cheating. However there was no danger of that in this match.
You only need such precautions if you are afraid that the opponent is going to cheat, but in this match there was no cause for such fear.
It is too late for Anand to complain now, of course. As Anand said, the rules were agreed by everyone. and so they were fair.
Be that as it may, it seems to me that Anand's team made a very serious mistake by not paying enough attention to this matter, and that Anand paid the price for it in games five, six and nine, the games which he lost.
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