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Bilbao Blindfold Chess World Cup Tournament

Bu Xiangzhi21(+6 -1 =3)[games]
Sergey Karjakin17(+5 -3 =2)[games]
Magnus Carlsen16(+4 -2 =4)[games]
Judit Polgar12(+3 -4 =3)[games]
Veselin Topalov9(+2 -5 =3)[games]
Pentala Harikrishna6(+1 -6 =3)[games]

 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 30  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Topalov vs Judit Polgar 1-0242007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupB46 Sicilian, Taimanov Variation
2. Harikrishna vs Carlsen ½-½592007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupA22 English
3. Bu Xiangzhi vs Karjakin 1-0502007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupD20 Queen's Gambit Accepted
4. Judit Polgar vs Topalov 1-0152007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupC78 Ruy Lopez
5. Karjakin vs Bu Xiangzhi ½-½282007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupC43 Petrov, Modern Attack
6. Carlsen vs Harikrishna 1-0352007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupC09 French, Tarrasch, Open Variation, Main line
7. Bu Xiangzhi vs Carlsen ½-½482007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupD12 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
8. Harikrishna vs Topalov 1-0462007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupB50 Sicilian
9. Karjakin vs Judit Polgar 1-0452007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupB98 Sicilian, Najdorf
10. Carlsen vs Bu Xiangzhi 0-1682007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
11. Topalov vs Harikrishna  ½-½502007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupC09 French, Tarrasch, Open Variation, Main line
12. Judit Polgar vs Karjakin  ½-½462007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupB33 Sicilian
13. Judit Polgar vs Harikrishna  ½-½552007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupC18 French, Winawer
14. Topalov vs Bu Xiangzhi ½-½592007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupD18 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Dutch
15. Carlsen vs Karjakin 0-1422007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupD47 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
16. Bu Xiangzhi vs Topalov 1-0372007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupA04 Reti Opening
17. Harikrishna vs Judit Polgar 0-1362007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupE30 Nimzo-Indian, Leningrad
18. Karjakin vs Carlsen 0-1342007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupB30 Sicilian
19. Karjakin vs Topalov 0-1312007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupB30 Sicilian
20. Bu Xiangzhi vs Harikrishna  1-0702007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupD11 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
21. Carlsen vs Judit Polgar 1-0272007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupE10 Queen's Pawn Game
22. Topalov vs Karjakin 0-1222007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupC78 Ruy Lopez
23. Harikrishna vs Bu Xiangzhi 0-1422007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupD17 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
24. Judit Polgar vs Carlsen  ½-½262007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupC78 Ruy Lopez
25. Carlsen vs Topalov 1-0372007Bilbao Blindfold Chess World CupE10 Queen's Pawn Game
 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 30  PGN Download
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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 7 OF 7 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Oct-20-07  frogbert: s4life, afaik, there is no blindfold rating where they started out from scratch, without basing it on fide rating or similar. do you know about such a rating, i'd be happy to learn when it started, how initial ratings were calculated, and so on. also, there are like 70 000 active players in the fide system - how many players are there in the blindfold rating pool you are talking about? if only a small fraction of the world's gms are represented there, and the initial ratings were based on classical ratings, then i still am leaning very heavily towards calling it an insignificant system :o)

but like i said, you don't need to attach some number to it to realize that bu's done a terrific tournament here.

Oct-20-07  chessmoron: Round 10:

Bu Xiangzhi 21 (+6 -1 =3)
Magnus Carlsen 16 (+4 -2 =4)
Sergey Karjakin 17 (+5 -3 =2)
Judit Polgar 12 (+3 -4 =3)
Veselin Topalov 9 (+2 -5 =3)
Pentala Harikrishna 6 (+1 -6 =3)

Bu lost. :(

Oct-20-07  frogbert: with normal scoring, carlsen and karjakin would've been equal on points, at +2 each, bu +5, polgar -1, topalov -3, harikrishna -5. here, carlsen get punished for his "high" draw percentage - 40% :o)
Oct-20-07  slomarko: <didn't do too well in the blindfold part> "didn't do too well" ? ok let me ask you something <frogbert> what kind of result would Carlsen need to have for you to say that he flopped a tourney? thanks for answering.
Oct-20-07  amuralid: <Thorski: Regarding visualization and blindfold chess, here's an interesting excerpt from Bill Wall's page, ... It was not that the expert blindfold player could visualize a chessboard better than the amateur. It was the opposite that was true. The good blindfold player was not dependent on the visual aspect of the game. > I agree with this based on my personal experience. About 7 years ago I used to be pretty strong. I could play decent blindfold chess and won a number of games against decent opposition. I can never visualize the entire board. I do not know how I store the position but it is definitely not visual.
Oct-20-07  cotdt: I can play blindfold chess. It is visual for me, although I don't see the whole board, but rather the relationship between the peices. I guess it is semi-visual.
Oct-20-07  BIDMONFA: Bilbao Blindfold Chess World Cup (2007)

Champion - Xiangzhi Bu

Oct-20-07  frogbert: slomarko, i'll let you know once it happens :o)
Oct-20-07  slomarko: frogbert, thanks you have already answered me.
Oct-20-07  frogbert: amber 2007, carlsen is rated 2690, ranked 10/12

he scores about 0,8 less than expected in 11 games blindfold chess, scores about 1,8 more than expected in 11 games rapid chess - in total, scores about 1 point more than expected.

total: solid tournament, better than expected, ca 2720 tpr based on classical ratings, place 8/12 (2 places better than his rank)

rapid: excellent tournament, ca 2800 tpr based on classical ratings, shared 2nd on points, placed 3/12 on tie-breaks (behind only anand and kramnik)

blindfold: didn't do too well, ca 2640 tpr based on classical ratings, placed 9/12, still ahead of his ranking (and only 1 point behind for instance anand and radjabov)

sure, carlsen flopped amber 2007 :o) and with 2800 tpr in the rapids in amber this year, and 2778 tpr now in bilbao, who doesn't think carlsen is a candidate for amber 2008? :o)

Oct-20-07  slomarko: well before amber 2007 i was reading a lot of hype how Carlsen will show his talent in the blindfold but it didn't quite turn that way..
Oct-21-07  Rolfo: <well before amber 2007 i was reading a lot of hype how Carlsen will show his talent in the blindfold but it didn't quite turn that way..>

No comment

Oct-21-07  brankat: I've been playing blindfold quite well for many years, I just have not been able to win any games :-)
Oct-21-07  Pawn Ambush: <Thorski> I checked out these two gave myself a headache,there's no clear cut agreement on just how blindfold play is performed. Some people are good at it and make it seem easy while others find it difficult.

Oct-21-07  hitman84: <Thorski>

I've played a couple of blind fold games which I won. I can visualize only a part of the board. When I analyze blindfolded my visualization of the pieces is progressive in the direction of the line I'm analyzing. I cannot visualize the whole board like <amuralid>.

As an example, you can think of board and pieces placed in a dark room. Hold a torch at the position where you're going to begin your analysis and then move the torch in the direction of your analysis. But you'll have to remember the long range pieces that interfere your analysis.

The art of blindfold is to be able to remember the position of unmoved pieces (or pieces that stay at a position for comparatively a longer period of time) and to be able to discard and replace pieces during a trade or capture.

Thanks for the interesting links!

Oct-21-07  hitman84: <The ability to play blindfold chess, i.e. the art of perfect visualization of the position and its analysis is one of the most important ones for being able to play master level chess. And for the world's top players it practically makes only very little difference if they play with or without looking at the board. Take GM Vassily Ivantchuk, for example, who sometimes for long stretches just stares into nowhere, taking note of the board only when a piece changes its place.

To which level of aesthetic mastery the world's top players can take a blindfold game will be demonstrated with the next specimen. The game certainly is right up there with the most beautiful blindfold games ever played. When it was finished, Kramnik – the winner – was heard to murmur several times: ”Such a beauty. Such a beauty.” And it certainly is. It contains several unusual, even paradoxical aspects. A king which in the middle of the game walks across the entire board into enemy territory and thus becomes decisive for White. This is very rarely seen in super-grandmasterdom since this sort of conduct is prototypically accompanied by loss of the game for the wandering king. Towards the end, Topalov – playing black – had a lead in material, his king had the space and the time, but it was impossible for him to prevent a mate that was appearing at the horizon.

We only give the moves here and invite you to visualize the game from the beginning just as the players did. Make sure you have about an uninterrupted hour for yourself in quiet concentration. Perhaps make yourself comfortable in your favourite chair, looking out into the sky, having something to drink within easy reach. Then after Black's 31st move try to find the fantastic combination that ends the game. But do so without looking at the diagram. You still have an advantage in that you know that there is a combination lurking in the position. If you do not succeed, study the diagram and try again. Carry the position along in your head as you go about your business again. Have your subconscious work on it. If you still don't succeed, there is always next month when the solution will be given in the September column.>

I need to improve my visualization skills! Once again I can't visualize the entire position. At the start of the game I can visualize the entire position but as I make the moves my visualization starts to degenerate and soon after the opening I start analyzing as I stated above.

Oct-21-07  Pawn Ambush: <cotdt: I can play blindfold chess. It is visual for me, although I don't see the whole board, but rather the relationship between the peices. I guess it is semi-visual.>

I can never visualize the entire board. I do not know how I store the position but it is definitely not visual.>

Semi-Visual very interesting...hmmm!

Now that I think more on it, its both verbal & visual,ex. verbally I hear the move 1.nf3, called out.

Now visually I don't actually see a clear colored image of a well defined beautifully hand carved white horse standing proudly on f3 turned slightly to the left looking across the e4 square.

You get the picture!

The image I see is fleeting but I can see it. I KNOW FOR CERTAIN from hearing the move that a Knight is there.

So after hearing a number of moves I can remember what piece is where and then to best of my ability translate the verbal into (in my case) a fleeting visual image. I may have to look at the fleeting image more than once to be certain. This were the patterns I need to recognize come into play ie.openings that I'm familiar with.

The players in the tournament having sight of both the board and having to type moves to each other shouldn't be too much of a distraction. But it takes away the asset of hearing.

Oct-22-07  brankat: I haven't really been following this tournament, so a question:

What time controls were used for these blindfold games? Thank You.

Oct-22-07  groupoid: 25 minutes plus 10 seconds per move
Oct-23-07  Udit Narayan: What an ingenious method of scoring. 3 points for a win and 1 point for a draw? So 3 draws equal a win?

I wonder which method was more successful in evading draws: this method or the one used in Mtel Masters (no draws by agreement)?

Oct-23-07  frogbert: playing blindfold, where blunders abound, is a sure method to avoid/evade draws :o) btw, they also used sofia rules in bilbao (no draws by agreement)
Oct-26-07  Towershield: I played this blindfold game against Sven (2659) on CM 8000. It was a 15 min game, but when I played 23...Kf8 I felt tired and adjourned the game. The day after I continued without the blindfold and found an interesting line beginning with 25.-a4 followed by axb3!.

Sven 2659- Towershield, [15 min]

1.Nc3 d5 2.d4 Nf6 3.Bg5 e6 4.e4 dxe4 5.Nxe4 Be7 6.Nc3 0-0 7.Nf3 Nd5 8.Bxe7 Qxe7 9.Qd2 b6 10.0-0-0 Nxc3 11.Qxc3 Bb7 12.Bd3 Nc6 13.a3 Rac8 14.Be4 Na5 15.Bxb7 Nxb7 16.d5 exd5 17.Rxd5 Rfd8 18.Qe5(Re1 Qxe1+!) Qxe5 19.Rxd8+ Rxd8 20.Nxe5 Nd6 21.Nc6 Ra8 22.Re1 Kf8(the game was adjourned here) 23.b3 a5 24.Re7 Rc8 25.c4 a4! 26.c5 axb3!! 27.Na7(27.Kb2 Nc4+! 28.Kxb3 Na5 +)Kxe7 28.cxd6+ Kd7(28.-Kxd6 was also playable; 29.Nxc8+ Kd7 30.Na7 c6=)29.Nxc8 Kxc8 30.dxc7 Kxc7

and after a few more moves, the game was drawn.

Oct-27-07  Akavall: <In a double round robin tournament two players fight their two game mini-match as the organizer desires. Each cries "Havoc" and lays on the other with all of their might. The more common result of this bloody two game mini-match is two draws. Under the Bilboa scoring system each player would walk away from the two game mini-match with two points, one point for each draw. But if they did not draw and each won one game they would both leave their match with three points rather than two.

One need not be a professor to grasp an underpinning truth: the Bilboa scoring system rewards those who swap wins and works to the severe disadvantage of players who fight it out in true gladiatorial style. The organizers at Bilboa made a subtle error in definition. They defined the problem as drawn games. The problem is not the draw. The problem is a lack of competitive effort, which results in draws. Transforming the scoring system transforms the system itself, and when we look at the consequences of the new system we reach new conclusions. The Bilboa scoring system will, indeed, reduce the number of draws. But the Bilboa scoring system will strongly encourage the "Bilboa Draw" (an agreed swap of wins), rewarding non-competitive behavior far more strongly than the common scoring system.

In summation: the Bilboa scoring system actually rewards and encourages non-competitive behavior at the chessboard and, most importantly, the Bilboa scoring system actually inflicts significant competitive disadvantages on those who chose to truly compete. Surely, the organizer will receive what the organizer rewards. Be careful what you ask for – because in the end you may actually get it.


Oct-28-07  chessmoron: There's no such thing as the Bilboa scoring system. As you know, Danailov is a plagiarize and "his" system is a copycat of what team chess competitions such as Olympiads and World Team Championship uses for tie-breaks.
Jan-12-17  stst: 1. Blindfold is great, why it's not used for tie-breaks instead of "Aamagedon??" - It's easy, non-drawish, and quick. In my opinion, much better than the controversal draw give Black a win.

2. Would like to see more Blindfold tournesy and matches, esp. for SK, he should be able to establish another championship level performance at Blindfold, adding onto the crown jewels of blitz and rapids.

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