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Tata Steel Masters Tournament

Fabiano Caruana10/13(+7 -0 =6)[games]
Magnus Carlsen8/13(+3 -0 =10)[games]
Wesley So7.5/13(+2 -0 =11)[games]
Jorden van Foreest7/13(+3 -2 =8)[games]
Daniil Dubov7/13(+3 -2 =8)[games]
Anish Giri6.5/13(+1 -1 =11)[games]
Viswanathan Anand6.5/13(+2 -2 =9)[games]
Jan-Krzysztof Duda6.5/13(+1 -1 =11)[games]
Alireza Firouzja6.5/13(+4 -4 =5)[games]
Jeffery Xiong6/13(+2 -3 =8)[games]
Vladislav Artemiev6/13(+3 -4 =6)[games]
Nikita Vitiugov5/13(+0 -3 =10)[games]
Yangyi Yu4.5/13(+0 -4 =9)[games]
Vladislav Kovalev4/13(+1 -6 =6)[games]
* Chess Event Description
Tata Steel Masters (2020)

The 2020 Tata Steel Masters was a 14-player single round-robin taking place from 11-26 January in Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands. World Champion Magnus Carlsen again headed the field, which included Top 10 stars Caruana, Giri and So as well as 5-time World Champion Anand. A lot of the focus was on the young stars - Duda, Artemiev, Xiong, and above all the 16-year-old Firouzja, who made his super-tournament debut. As well as the traditional venue in Wijk aan Zee, one round was played in the PSV football stadium in Eindhoven (Round 5, 16 January). The time control was 100 minutes for 40 moves, followed by 50 minutes for 20 moves, then 15 minutes for the rest of the game, with a 30-second increment per move from move 1. If there was a tie for first place, the top two after tiebreaks would play a 2-game blitz (5+3) playoff and, if still tied, an Armageddon game, while the monetary prizes would be shared evenly. Chief organizer: Jeroen van den Berg. Chief arbiter: Pavel Votruba.

No playoff was necessary: Fabiano Caruana won the event for the first time with 10/13.

Elo 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 1 Caruana 2822 * ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 1 1 ½ 1 ½ 1 1 10 2 Carlsen 2872 ½ * ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 8 3 So 2765 ½ ½ * ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 7½ 4 Van Foreest 2644 ½ ½ ½ * 1 ½ ½ ½ ½ 0 0 1 1 ½ 7 5 Dubov 2683 0 ½ ½ 0 * ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 1 7 6 Giri 2768 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ * ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 6½ 7 Anand 2758 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ * ½ 1 1 ½ ½ ½ ½ 6½ 8 Duda 2758 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ * ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ 6½ 9 Firouzja 2723 0 0 0 ½ ½ 1 0 ½ * 1 1 ½ ½ 1 6½ 10 Xiong 2712 ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 0 ½ 0 * 1 ½ ½ 0 6 11 Artemiev 2731 0 ½ ½ 1 0 ½ ½ ½ 0 0 * 1 ½ 1 6 12 Vitiugov 2747 ½ 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 0 * ½ ½ 5 13 Yu Yangyi 2726 0 ½ ½ 0 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ * ½ 4½ 14 Kovalev 2660 0 0 ½ ½ 0 0 ½ ½ 0 1 0 ½ ½ * 4

Official site:

Previous: Tata Steel Masters (2019). Next: Tata Steel Masters (2021). See also Tata Steel Challengers (2020) and Tata Steel Qualifiers (2020)

 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 91  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Xiong vs Dubov ½-½522020Tata Steel MastersB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
2. Carlsen vs Giri ½-½252020Tata Steel MastersA22 English
3. Firouzja vs V Kovalev 1-0362020Tata Steel MastersC92 Ruy Lopez, Closed
4. Vitiugov vs Duda ½-½582020Tata Steel MastersB59 Sicilian, Boleslavsky Variation, 7.Nb3
5. Caruana vs So ½-½332020Tata Steel MastersD94 Grunfeld
6. Anand vs V Artemiev ½-½312020Tata Steel MastersB12 Caro-Kann Defense
7. J van Foreest vs Y Yu 1-0752020Tata Steel MastersB40 Sicilian
8. Duda vs Firouzja ½-½392020Tata Steel MastersD20 Queen's Gambit Accepted
9. Y Yu vs Carlsen ½-½312020Tata Steel MastersB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
10. V Artemiev vs Vitiugov 1-0502020Tata Steel MastersA06 Reti Opening
11. Dubov vs V Kovalev 1-0392020Tata Steel MastersA19 English, Mikenas-Carls, Sicilian Variation
12. Xiong vs J van Foreest 1-0362020Tata Steel MastersB52 Sicilian, Canal-Sokolsky (Rossolimo) Attack
13. Giri vs Caruana ½-½632020Tata Steel MastersE32 Nimzo-Indian, Classical
14. So vs Anand 1-0262020Tata Steel MastersC53 Giuoco Piano
15. V Kovalev vs Duda  ½-½322020Tata Steel MastersB51 Sicilian, Canal-Sokolsky (Rossolimo) Attack
16. Caruana vs Y Yu 1-0482020Tata Steel MastersC43 Petrov, Modern Attack
17. J van Foreest vs Dubov 1-0472020Tata Steel MastersB22 Sicilian, Alapin
18. Firouzja vs V Artemiev 1-0572020Tata Steel MastersB12 Caro-Kann Defense
19. Vitiugov vs So  ½-½392020Tata Steel MastersC83 Ruy Lopez, Open
20. Anand vs Giri  ½-½212020Tata Steel MastersC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
21. Carlsen vs Xiong ½-½562020Tata Steel MastersD41 Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch
22. V Artemiev vs V Kovalev 1-0442020Tata Steel MastersE20 Nimzo-Indian
23. Giri vs Vitiugov  ½-½302020Tata Steel MastersD02 Queen's Pawn Game
24. Xiong vs Caruana  ½-½362020Tata Steel MastersE21 Nimzo-Indian, Three Knights
25. Y Yu vs Anand ½-½322020Tata Steel MastersD38 Queen's Gambit Declined, Ragozin Variation
 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 91  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 46 OF 46 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Premium Chessgames Member
  theagenbiteofinwit: <beatgiant><Petrosianac> I ordered a used copy of The Petroff Defence, which is a paper brick worth of analysis. The copy is signed "To Mike, the best Artur Yusupov."

Alas my name isn't Mike, but Yusupov's name is signed in his own hand.

Feb-05-20  Absentee: <theagenbiteofinwit: Alas my name isn't Mike>

You can always rectify that.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: ***
Hi Sokrates.

Picture of Nimzowitsch's grave here from the Edward WInter site:

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <theagenbiteofwit> But when was it signed, before or after Yusupov/Jussupow moved to Germany?

How did FIDE decide to spell his name Jussupow? My best guess would be, based on the spelling in copies of his German identification documents he must have provided at registration time.

Was the spelling chosen by Yusupov/Jussupow himself, or through a system of rules applied by German officials, or what? I can only guess.

Premium Chessgames Member
  theagenbiteofinwit: <beatgiant> The edition was published in 2002.

He may very well spell his name different ways depending on whether or not his intended readers are Russian, English, or German.

Feb-05-20  nok: <Soon we may be having a 4 page long outburst on pronunciation, diphthongs, spelling, alphabets, sounds and languages, etc, etc by our dear <AylerKupp>, his silence so far is very suspicious...brace yourselves.>

Hear, hear

Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: <<Sokrates> The frustration of waiting!>

I think that <> should create a page for Godot in order to handle situations like this one. And any off-topic posts after a tournament ends should be automatically moved to it.

Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: <<Clemens Scheitz> * * Yellow Alert *>

Well, I have no knowledge of German, Russian, Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, or the Cyrillic alphabet so I didn't think that I had anything worthwhile to contribute to the discussion. Not that ignorance ever stopped me from posting before.

I did enjoy <soldal>'s comment that "btw, in Norwegian it's Nepomnjasjtsjij, easily readable)." And, being one of the many, I'm sure, that have been challenged by the spelling of Nepomniachtchi I suggest that from now on we refer to him as "Nepo*" where "*" is the traditional symbol used in pattern matching which causes a search to succeed for any word that starts with "Nepo".

Think of the argument-saving possibilities. We can start discussing Karpo*, Korch*, Grisc*, Alek* (although Al* might resolve some remaining issues), Bogo*, etc. and no one would be wrong, although we would still be at a loss when referencing Chigorin/Tchigorin, and others. Oh well, no suggestions are perfect, not even mine.

Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: <<Sokrates> My looong posts of late end now. They are <AylerKupp's> privilege.>

I will gladly share my dubious "privilege" with you and anyone else who would like to share.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Unlike others, I do not regard this uncharacteristic quiet from <AK> with suspicion: rather, I welcome it!
Feb-05-20  Sokrates: Many thanks, <Geoff>, for the photo link. Apparently that photo was taken during the summer half of the year. The green branches at the side of N's stone weren't there this afternoon.
Feb-05-20  Sokrates: <AylerKupp: <<Sokrates> The frustration of waiting!>

I think that <> should create a page for Godot in order to handle situations like this one. And any off-topic posts after a tournament ends should be automatically moved to it.>

Great idea. You have my vote, <AK>.

Premium Chessgames Member
  moronovich: Thanks a lot for your story my dear
<Sokrates> !

I am glad you found it.

I find it actually quite moving they are buried the same place.

Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: <<perfidious> Unlike others, I do not regard this uncharacteristic quiet from <AK> with suspicion: rather, I welcome it!>

So did I. But then <Clemens Scheitz> had to wake me up from my slumber. Dang!

Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: <<Sokrates> Great idea. You have my vote, <AK>.>

Well, that's one vote in its favor.

Feb-05-20  Sokrates: <moronovich:...
I find it actually quite moving they are buried the same place.>

So do I. The more so because I can't imagine two more opposite personalities. It must have been JE's explicit wish to rest there. In JE's book on chess history he mentions Nimzo's relations to money and his efforts to save money. When he died he allegedly left DKK 70,000 to his old mother in Riga. In 1935 that was a gigantic sum of money, as an annual average income would have been around 4,000 DKK or less.

Let me finish this tale with the famous game between them, one that shows Enevoldsen at his very best and one highly entertaining chess game. J Enevoldsen vs Nimzowitsch, 1933

Premium Chessgames Member
  moronovich: <Let me finish this tale with the famous game between them, one that shows Enevoldsen at his very best and one highly entertaining chess game. J Enevoldsen vs Nimzowitsch, 1933>

Thanks for the game.Filled with all these sweet memories.One of the most famous games in DK and another one being Høi-Gulko which took first price at the olympiad and also a Colle.An opening that also served me well.A system that black often tend(ed?)to underestimate. Interesting how different personalities these two guys were.but that is likely why they were attracted to each other.Like when I meat my wife we were the Lady and the Vagabond.

And on another note:I heard the other day that Russia comes from rus,meaning to row in viking language… so roughly translated it should be something like "the land we row to".But you probably know this already !?

All the best.

Feb-06-20  Sokrates: <moronovich> I knew the word "Rus" was connected to the Swedish vikings, who, contrary to the Danish and Norwegian vikings, went east, down the Russian rivers, right down to Konstantinopel, where they became a sort of life guard for the East Roman emperor. But, admittedly, I haven't studied it closely. I am sure our Russian expert <alexmagnus> has a say in this.

As for Nimzo and Enevoldsen, they did have a few things in common, upon further reflection: They were both difficult persons to approach, they weren't particularly likable and forthcoming, they were both great authors, and, to my knowledge, none of them married, at least not Nimzo.

Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: The origin of "Rus" is actually a matter of an unsolved (and probably never solvable) dispute. But yes, one of the theories is that it came from Sweden (compare the Finnish name of Sweden, Ruotsi). As the mainstream theory on the origin of the first dynasty of Rus and later Muscovy and Russia, the Rurikids, is that they came from Scandinavia, it is also very plausible.
Feb-06-20  Sokrates: Just a supplement to <alexmagnus>:

<...The name Russia is derived from Rus', a medieval state populated mostly by the East Slavs. However, this proper name became more prominent in the later history, and the country typically was called by its inhabitants "Русская Земля" (russkaja zemlja), which can be translated as "Russian Land" or "Land of Rus'". In order to distinguish this state from other states derived from it, it is denoted as Kievan Rus' by modern historiography. The name Rus itself comes from the early medieval Rus' people, Swedish merchants and warriors[47][48] who relocated from across the Baltic Sea and founded a state centered on Novgorod that later became Kievan Rus.> Source: Wikipedia.

Feb-06-20  Pedro Fernandez: <The Trompowsky Attack> PART I

<Remark:This opening is named after the one-time Brazilian champion Octávio Trompowsky (1897–1984)>

<Remark2: The World Champion Magnus Carlsen dedicated this "violent aperture" against the super GM Sergei Karjakin in the first game of 2016 World Chess Championship>

1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5

click for larger view

with the white's idea to exchange his bishop for Black's knight, folding black semi-central pawns.

In order to understand a little the "philosophy" enclosed in this controversial aperture, I have allowed myself to literally take the opinion that it has, about this opening, a talented and experienced chess writer, in his book:

Cyrus Lakdawala, The Trompowsky Attack Move By Move.

IM Lakdawala writes (SIC):

<"The DNA of every person on earth is virtually identical. Yet infinitesimally slight differences in our species give birth to the vast array of ugly and attractive, cruel and compassionate, idiotic and wise, those who take and those who give, evil and holy. A chess game is the same way. The tiniest shift gives rise to destinies as varied as winning, drawing and losing. The Trompowsky is an opening very much like this as well, where we reach hairtrigger positions which alter our destiny with one seemingly trivial inaccurate or accurate move.

In most openings, the positions we reach are like one of those dreams where the landscape always remains the same, no matter how far your dream character travels. But most certainly not in the Trompowsky, a paradoxical byway and an inexhaustible font for originality, a reality where ‘normal’ fails to apply and the solution to our problems is often a paradox within a paradox. It’s difficult to label that which lacks an abiding identity and in the Tromp, accidental happenings – both terrifying and joyful – have a way of unexpectedly shaping our futures.

Yet our opening is not a case of ambition outweighing rationality. Deep down, we sense a stratum of rationality behind what appears to be purely irrational. On our second move, our not-so-subtle message blares, as we issue the ultimatum: Play in my backyard, or else!

Our bishop arises from nowhere, just itching to create unrest. Almost instantly, we withdraw recognition of opening theory’s intimidating authority and incite rebellion. 2.Bg5 stands outside the terms of a ‘normal’ opening’s contract. Be warned: the Tromp is an opening of wild fluctuations and our games rarely flow smoothly, in a consistently upward trajectory. We enter a realm where measurement of known quantities isn’t so easy. The positions often defy physical laws and we find ourselves faced with paralyzingly difficult over-the-board choices and compromises.

People of cautious nature tend to live long lives, while graveyards are filled with optimists. The Tromp, I’m afraid, falls under the latter category. I tend to engage the Tromp when desperate for a win and unafraid of loss. For three decades the opening has been my not-so-secret weapon of choice in critical, must-win games. The Trompowsky is a very difficult opening system to play with a degree of skill. Play it without full understanding and familiarity, and we risk sounding like a Mozart symphony performed and assassinated by a high school orchestra. I originally took up the Trompowsky with a dreamer’s natural aversion to mathematical measurement. Today, 30 years later, all this has altered, and the opening originally intended to dodge theory is now encircled by reams of it.

There are few things more depressing than the realization of your long labours having been rendered null and void. In a way we do just this to our booked up opponents, by engaging the Tromp. For King’s Indian, Grünfeld, Nimzo-Indian, Queen’s Indian, Slav, Queen’s Gambit players, their theoretical knowledge – and more importantly, the experience accumulated from these lines – virtually vaporizes after our second move. With our second move we may disarm a normally well-armed theoretician and toss him or her into a world of partially-formed images, murky speculations, half-recollections of positions which shift in and out of focus into writhing, alien configurations.">

Feb-06-20  Pedro Fernandez: <The Trompowsky Attack> PART II

<"Each time I begin a book, it feels as if I am about to build the Great Wall of China and have placed but a single stone. For all my anti-theory rhetoric, this book will be an exceedingly difficult task for the reader to absorb, from a theoretical standpoint, mainly because the positions reached are so bafflingly alien and the convoluted variations so difficult to remember. Misunderstand one slight shift, or forget a single move in a variation, and we risk flipping a ‘+-’ into its dreaded opposite, ‘-+’.

The logistical challenges of the Tromp remind us of Noah’s woes, when he had to work out a way to fit a pair of every animal on earth into an ark, 300 cubits in length – rather a tight fit. Luckily he didn’t have to worry about the fish. Also, I quite reasonably ask: why did he bring along mosquitoes, wasps and venomous snakes?

Frustratingly many of the Tromp variations we contend with are like ones in a dream, the memory of which fades to oblivion upon awakening. If this is the case for our side, then I argue: how much more so for our opponents, who I’m guessing, don’t spend all that much of their study time on the Trompowsky? Saying this, in our opening, the ability to retain one’s bearings within the unfamiliar is perhaps every bit as important as memorizing and then spewing out opening theory and its offshoot equations. But we must also recognize our limitations. The human brain is incapable of housing and storing so much data, unless your FIDE rating happens to exceed the 2700 mark. So prepare yourself to get tossed into indecipherable situations where we play by feel, rather than logic. And why not?".>

My motivation for to do this modest essay is due to the following:

<Game of Yesterday or J-K. Duda vs R. Rapport>

After the black move 30...Qa6

click for larger view

white should defend its a-pawn and that is only possible by playing 31.Nb3, but then 31...Bxb3 arriving to the critical position:

click for larger view

<Note that there is an indirect defending of a5-pawn since white threatens mate in 'h8'. So I considered 32.Qd4 attacking the rook and also threatening 33.Qh8 mate. But my move doesn't work as well as that one played by Duda [please, look at the next black text] due the winner move 32...Rc1+. The only move which saves white is given by Stockfish: 32.Qb2! controlling the critical square 'c1'>. 32.Qd8? Rc1+

click for larger view

<all the remaining moves are easy to follow and practically unique> 33.Kf2 Qf1+ 34.Kg3 f4+! (<34.Qe1+?? Kh3! =, since the black rook is not activated!>) 35.Kxf4 (<35...Kh4 is worse>) 35...Rc4+ 36.Kg3 Qe1+ 37.Kh3

click for larger view

37...Rc8!! (<obligating white to take it, avoiding the lifesaver Qh8+ and preparing the mortal bishop's check!>) 38.Rxc8 Be6+ 39.g4 hxg4+ 40.fxg4 Qxe3+ 41.Kh4 Qf2+, Duda resigns.

click for larger view

Also looks at this interesting video by the Master of Masters GM Garry Kasparov.

Feb-07-20  Pedro Fernandez: It is worth aggregate that these young chess players are a lot aggressive (specially those two ones on the context); kid GMs from India, China, Iran, Russia, just for name some countries. This new generation promises to us a lot of surprises, I hope.
Feb-10-20  1d410: This is what I want from Caruana bust the inept Gen Z. Kinda like Sinquefield.
Feb-25-20  MordimerChess: My first commentary of XXI century chess tournament. Tata Steel 2020 and my 22 chess games analyzed.


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