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Tal Memorial Tournament

Levon Aronian5.5/9(+2 -0 =7)[games]
Magnus Carlsen5.5/9(+2 -0 =7)[games]
Ian Nepomniachtchi5/9(+1 -0 =8)[games]
Sergey Karjakin5/9(+1 -0 =8)[games]
Vassily Ivanchuk5/9(+2 -1 =6)[games]
Peter Svidler4.5/9(+2 -2 =5)[games]
Viswanathan Anand4.5/9(+0 -0 =9)[games]
Boris Gelfand3.5/9(+0 -2 =7)[games]
Vladimir Kramnik3.5/9(+0 -2 =7)[games]
Hikaru Nakamura3/9(+0 -3 =6)[games]

 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 45  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Ivanchuk vs Svidler 1-0562011Tal MemorialD80 Grunfeld
2. Aronian vs Carlsen ½-½572011Tal MemorialE15 Queen's Indian
3. Nakamura vs Gelfand ½-½342011Tal MemorialD37 Queen's Gambit Declined
4. Anand vs Karjakin ½-½422011Tal MemorialE32 Nimzo-Indian, Classical
5. Kramnik vs I Nepomniachtchi 0-1532011Tal MemorialA37 English, Symmetrical
6. Karjakin vs Nakamura ½-½432011Tal MemorialB92 Sicilian, Najdorf, Opocensky Variation
7. Carlsen vs Gelfand 1-0382011Tal MemorialD12 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
8. Svidler vs Anand ½-½232011Tal MemorialB12 Caro-Kann Defense
9. I Nepomniachtchi vs Ivanchuk ½-½762011Tal MemorialB32 Sicilian
10. Aronian vs Kramnik ½-½492011Tal MemorialD40 Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch
11. Anand vs I Nepomniachtchi ½-½272011Tal MemorialD97 Grunfeld, Russian
12. Ivanchuk vs Aronian 0-1572011Tal MemorialC67 Ruy Lopez
13. Kramnik vs Carlsen ½-½412011Tal MemorialA20 English
14. Nakamura vs Svidler 0-1482011Tal MemorialD86 Grunfeld, Exchange
15. Gelfand vs Karjakin 0-1592011Tal MemorialE06 Catalan, Closed, 5.Nf3
16. I Nepomniachtchi vs Nakamura ½-½852011Tal MemorialB72 Sicilian, Dragon
17. Kramnik vs Ivanchuk ½-½572011Tal MemorialD15 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
18. Aronian vs Anand ½-½602011Tal MemorialD37 Queen's Gambit Declined
19. Svidler vs Gelfand ½-½402011Tal MemorialA13 English
20. Carlsen vs Karjakin ½-½672011Tal MemorialE12 Queen's Indian
21. Nakamura vs Aronian ½-½532011Tal MemorialD31 Queen's Gambit Declined
22. Gelfand vs I Nepomniachtchi ½-½622011Tal MemorialD80 Grunfeld
23. Anand vs Kramnik ½-½362011Tal MemorialD37 Queen's Gambit Declined
24. Karjakin vs Svidler ½-½262011Tal MemorialB42 Sicilian, Kan
25. Ivanchuk vs Carlsen ½-½742011Tal MemorialD82 Grunfeld, 4.Bf4
 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 45  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 45 OF 46 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Nov-26-11  bronkenstein: <Is Topalov going to be at the upcoming London tournament? If he still wants to be relevant, he's going to have to play some strong events.> Nop , here`s the lineup But he is playing @ TATA in january -

<serenpidity.ejd: Hey guys, can someone give information as to what category is this tournment?> 22 , IIRC.

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <serenpidity.ejd>: Category <22>
Nov-26-11  Meatwad: Topalov never plays in the same tournament as Kramnik (and vice versa), so organizers have to make a choice of one or the other. There's a bit on where Kramnik was surprised not to have been invited to Wijk this year (though he says he would have declined anyway) - but note that Topalov was invited.
Nov-26-11  Kinghunt: <virginmind: so we still dont know who's the winner. chessbase gives carlsen on tie-break, while and others show, on the contrary, aronian.>

The chessgames score tables always have arbitrary tiebreaks. The tiebreak actually in place is number of black games, and chessbase accurately uses this to declare Carlsen the winner.

Nov-26-11  Bibliophage: i love the chessbase photo of nepo from round 6, dude is trying so hard its insane
Nov-26-11  Ezzy: <HeMateMe I'm guessing he (Topalov) is being invited to a lot of these events, and is declining to play>

In an interview with Danialov, Danialov said Topalov wasn't invited to the Tal Memorial. He also said he would have refused if he was invited due to Topalov refusing to play in Russia.

Interview here -

Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: Does Vesca have bad breath, and the other GMs refuse to sit across the board from him?
Nov-26-11  kia0708: Topalov and Drawnik avoid each other, so this is a problem for organizers. It's pity because Topalov's play is aggressive (and entertaining).
Nov-26-11  Rolfo: <anandrulez: Topalov should focus on his gifted Chess abilities rather than politics . He should get rid of Danialov and hire a pro manager instead > I agree
Nov-26-11  voyager39: As I had predicted based on past Tal memorials, the player who wins two games without losing will be the victor. Unfortunately we got two of them.

I find it very hard to distinguish between Carlsen and Aronian in Tal. Both played good quality games and deserve applause.

Aronian won two games:-
vs Ivanchuk (#3 this tourney, #5 in terms of participant ratings, #6 on FIDE list, game won with Black) and vs Svidler (#6 this tourney, #8 in terms of participant ratings, #12 on FIDE list, game won with White)

Carlsen won two games:-
vs Gelfand (#9 this tourney, #9 in terms of participant ratings, #14 on FIDE list, game won with White) and vs Nakamura (#10 this tourney, #7 in terms of participant ratings, #10 on FIDE list, game won with Black)

One can argue endlessly as to the fact that Aronian beat the higher ranked / in-form players yet couldn't beat the ones who were lesser rated or out of form; whereas Carlsen was handicapped by worser odds with White but could beat the lesser rated / out of form players. Thereafter it boils down to the tournament tie-break rules. In any case they were undoubtedly better then all the rest.

My feelings as regards the rest...

Ivanchuk - Another creative performance, could have been a contender for top slot with 2 wins but unfortunately lost a game to Aronian and ended up joint #3.

Karjakin - Good performance, unbeaten and on equal terms with the best. Another joint #3.

Nepomniatchi - Standout performer, much lower rated and apparently the rabbit, but joint #3 and unbeaten. Played very well against the best.

Svidler - Won 2, lost 2. Not yet ready for the highest echelons.

Anand - Leave me alone and I'll let you be. Uninspiring with 100% draws.

Kramnik - Experiments didn't pay dividend at the highest level, thereafter back to original.

Gelfand - Experimenting for the WCC earned two losses. Wonder if Tal helped or harmed his confidence?

Nakamura - Drifting badly despite coach Kasparov (or is he causing it?).

Premium Chessgames Member
  DarthStapler: I hear next year Tal is going to come back from the grave and win this tournament
Nov-27-11  knighterrant999: <Nakamura - Drifting badly> Possibly the understatement of the day.
Nov-27-11  serenpidity.ejd: 'The check is in the mail guys'; <bronkenstein & whiteshark>
Nov-27-11  fisayo123: "Nepomniatchi - Standout performer, much lower rated and apparently the rabbit, but joint #3 and unbeaten. Played very well against the best." That should read joint #2. Here is a beautiful article about Ian and his Tal-like skills.
Nov-27-11  badest: <SteinitzLives: Topalovs' manager and fundraiser Danilov may well be the reason we see less of Topo, the poor sod. All of these great tourneys and he sits on the sidelines missing out.> I really don' think so. I think Topa needed some time to overcome the loss against Anand and he also got married during this period. Maybe he is giving married life a chance? He played OK mostly during the recent European team championships, and it will be exciting to see how he does in Wijk. As far as Tal goes it is a real pity that he does not participate, since he is one of the few modern players that can play Tal-like.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: Going back to the past with respect to draws, Kasparov did win a lot of games.

There was a program about Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie last night, and Fry talked about covering the Olympiad in Thessolonica. Anyway I got interested in checking out Olympiad coverage on this site, and stumbled on this set of games for Kasparov in 2002 :

Bled Olympiad (2002)/Garry Kasparov

A lot of decisive games here - Kasparov was a real killer.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: Of course a lot of those opponents were relative "bunnies", so it isn't really comparable to this super elite tournament.

I have a page for Kasparov's tournaments and my video annotations here to check out:

Nov-27-11  polarmis: Better late than never? :) Here's my final report on the Tal Memorial, complete with a lot of player comments you won't find elsewhere:

Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: <polarmis:> Really nice website there. I am starting to use it a lot recently.

Feel free to embed any relevant videos if you feel they are good enough from my channel.

Nov-27-11  anandrulez: The complaint I have is addressed in your first line , otherwise its a pleasure reading always :)
Nov-27-11  anandrulez: Initial release May 15, 2010; 18 months ago
Stable release 2.0b / October 7, 2011
Its relatievly new engine besides the authors needs to participate in the contest I think not sure.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: <anandrulez> Did you mean to post to the Computer World championship page?!
Nov-27-11  Everett: Nov-26-11    <serenpidity.ejd: Hey guys, can someone give information as to what category is this tournment?>

The Inflated category

It is much better to determine the strength of the tournament by the number of ranked players at the top, not by ELO.

Ex. If everyone from the top 10 show up in a DRR tournament, then there can never be a stronger 10-man tournament. It would be nice if this was switched one of these days...

Nov-27-11  Everett: <Meatwad: Topalov never plays in the same tournament as Kramnik (and vice versa), so organizers have to make a choice> Sounds like a divorced couple fighting over who gets the kids.

<fisayo123> Nepo was indeed joint 3rd, as the first two positions are filled by Aronian and Carlsen. One cannot come in second if two people have outperformed him. The next available place is 3rd.

Nov-27-11  Rolfo: <polarmis: Better late than never? :)> As usual to the point! Thanks
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