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Fridrik Olafsson vs Anatoly Karpov
Buenos Aires (Clarin) (1980), Buenos Aires ARG, rd 12, Nov-01
Catalan Opening: General (E00)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Apr-21-06  diagonal: Against all odds at Buenos Aires in 1980 (tournament - no blitz, rapid/active or exhib):

The (then) reigning president of the world chess federation against the (then) reigning world chess champion, and the functionary wins! (Only) chess makes that possible or could you imagine - let's say Joseph Blatter or Lennart Johansson scoring a goal against Ronaldinho?

Fridrik Olafsson, one of the rare amateurs (semi / part-time professional chess player in modern times such as Euwe or Unzicker) was a Candidate in 1959 and of course a strong contender for many years (eg. substitute / first reserve in the Match "Rest of the World" vs. USSR in 1970), and from 1978 to 1982 president of FIDE.

Sep-04-07  RookFile: Strange game, Karpov seems unrecognizable here.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Odd to me also, as I can never recall seeing Karpov willing to essay the Black side of a Modern Benoni.
Mar-16-15  Retireborn: <perfidious> Karpov had always played 3...d5 before and done well with it, but he'd lost to Ribli at the Amsterdam tournament a few months earlier, so perhaps his defence to the Catalan was still being "repaired".

In any case he gets a good position from the opening, but goes badly wrong with 31...Rd1, missing the powerful reply 32.c5! when Rb6 is coming and the a5 pawn is going to drop. Instead 31...Bxe4 32.Bxe4 f5 & 33...e4 would have been fine for Black.

Interestingly, Houdini points out that 33...Bd5 actually makes things worse and Olafsson could have won at once with 34.Bf3 when surprisingly the rook has nowhere to go.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Karpov was aparently trying to play for win here, he avoided simplification including trade of his LSB for Knight on e4, which would have given him comfortable play, and actually his position was fine but he went astray with 31...Rd1 as <Retireborn> pointed out. Fridrik Olafsson managed to exploit his mistake perfectly.

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