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Jan Banas vs Magnus Carlsen
European Club Cup (2001), Panormo GRE, rd 2, Sep-24
English Opening: Symmetrical. Four Knights Variation (A35)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
May-28-16  Sergash: Jan Banas was born in Czechoslovakia in 1947 (he was 54 years old when he played this game) and has been an international master since 1979. He was rated 2361 at the time of the actual encounter, while he is 2259 in 2016.

On the other side, Carlsen was 10 years old and rated 2084, with no official title.

It is interesting to note that this game, the 2nd of the tournament, started the same way than the one Calrsen had played as White in round 1, agains Dejan Stojanovski, a draw in 20 moves. What it intended by banas, or simply a coincidence? Carlsen vs D Stojanovski, 2001

<4.d4> This is a more direct approach than the previous time Calkrsen had been in this position, earlier that same year against Hersvik: D Hersvik vs Carlsen, 2001

<14.Be3?!> While we are still in the theory, better are:

A) 14.Bxg7 Kxg7 15.Qd4+! Kg8 16.b4! b6! 17.f4 Qb8 Dan Cramling (2330) vs. Thomas Heiberg (2250), Baerum Batumi (?) 1980, round 2, draw

B) 14.b4 b6 (14...Bxd4+ 15.Qxd4 b6 would transpose in the game Cramling vs. Heiberg above) 15.Bxg7 (15.a3 Re8 16.Bxg7 Kxg7 would transpose in the game Bensch vs. Schramm below) Kxg7 16.f4 (16.Qd4+ Kg6 would go back in Cramling vs. Heiberg; or 16.a3 Re8 17.Qd4+ Kg8 Patrick Bensch (2280) vs. Christian Schramm (2359), Freising Open (Germany) 2001, round 9, draw) a5 17.b5 Bb7 Heinz Wirthensohn (2397) vs. Markus Klauser (2402), Switzerland Championship 2006 in Lenzerheide, round 1, 1-0.

<17...Bxd5?!> Strangely enough, historically this is almost the only move played here, despite its inferiority! The correct path was shown to be 17...Qd8! 18.Bf1 b6 B. Theodorsson vs. Bernd Schmitz, 15th World Team Championship 1968, Finals 'A' - Iceland against East Germany, round 2, draw

<18.exd5?! Qb4 > Better is 18.cxd5! Rfc8 19.Rc4 Qd8 20.Rdc1 b5! (Drazen Marovic (2455) vs. Dragoljub Velimirovic (2520), Osijek (Yugoslavia) 1978, round 3, 1-0) 21.R4c2 b4 / Lorne Yee (2084) vs. Piotr Olszewski (2273), 6th Financial Concept Open 1999 in North Bay (Canada), round 8, draw.

<19.Bf1N> This is the theoritical novelty in this game. Before that and of a similar value, there had been 19.Rc2 = / Selby Anderson vs. Carter Gibson, 101th US Open 2000 in Saint-Paul (USA), round 3, draw.

May-28-16  Sergash: I went through this game with the program Komodo 9.42 64 bits.

<20...a4?! 21.Bd2! > Apparently Carlsen had missed White's strong reply. 20...Qa3! 21.Rb1! Na6! 22.f4! .

<21...Qa3 22.b4 Na6> These are all forced moves. For example, if 21...Qb6? 22.b4! Nd7 23.Qxb6 Nxb6 24.Be3! Nd7 25.c5! dxc5 26.bxc5 with a winning advantage.

<23.b5? Nb4! = > Strange that the moves maintaining White's strong advantage were pretty much all forced, but Banas missed them... 23.Rc2! Nxb4 24.Bc1 Nxc2 25.Bxa3 Nxa3 26.Rc1

<24...Nxa2?? 25.Ra1 Bxa1 26.Rxa1 Qc5 27.Rxa2 / > It seems Carlsen could not find another way to get his queen out of this closet! But the computer found 24...e6! = to open the 'e'-file!

<27...a3 28.Bd2!> The best chance was again 27...e6! 28.dxe6 Rxe6! /

<34...Ra8> Since Banas doesn't seem to find a way to materialize his win, Carlsen misses the good tactical shot 34...Qxb5! 35.Qxa3 Rxc4! 36.Bxc4 Qxc4 /

<35.b6?! Rcc8> This pawn move doesn't seem too good. Banas could have waited until after the time control to better evaluate it. Meanwhile, there is 35.Bd4! Qb3 36.Qh6! (not 36.Qd2? Rxc4! 37.Bxc4 Qxc4 ) e5 (or 36...f6 37.Rd2! a2 38.Kh2! a1Q 39.Bxa1 Rxa1 40.h5! ) 37.dxe6 fxe6 38.Qd2

<37.Qe2?!> 37.Bf1! followed with h4-h5.

<38.Be1?!> After this move, White doesn't seem to be clearly winning anymore, despite retaining a big advantage, still. 38.Kh2! and now:

A) 38...h5 39.c5! dxc5 40.Bxg6! Qf6 (not 40...fxg6? 41.Qe6+ and Qxc8) 41.Bh7! Kf8 (not 41...Kxh7? 42.Qc2+ and Qxa4) 42.Qe3!

B) 38...Rca8 39.Qe4! Re8 (or 39...f5 40.Qe6+! Kf8 41.h5! ) 40.h5!

<38...Qd4+> Somewhat dubious. 38...Qb3! 39.Kh2! (39.Bf2?! Raxc4! 40.Bxc4 Rxc4 ) Qxb6

<39...Raa8 40.Bf2!> Why not 39...Qxb6 40.Qxe7! Qd8 41.Qxd8+! (or 41.Qxb7 Rb8 42.Qc6 Ra5 ) Rxd8 /

May-28-16  Sergash: <44.Qe2?!> Better is 44.Re2! a2 45.Ba1 Qxb6 46.Qxe7 Qd8 47.Qe3!

<45...Kf8> The tactics already shown could have taken place here also: 45...Raxc4!? (or one can start with the other rook too) 46.Bxc4 Qxc4! 47.Qxc4! Rxc4 48.Ba1 Rb4 /

<46.h5?! Raxc4! 47.Bxc4 Qxc4! 48.Qxc4! Rxc4 > Not a good timing for the h-pawn! 46.Be3! Now Banas, while still holding a clear advantage, is possibly not winning anymore.

<49...Rb4?> 49...Ra4! Carlsen is trying to trade his a-pawn for White's b-pawn, making sure all the remaining pawns will be on the same side of the board. But his position has permanent flaws and this powerful passed a-pawn was somewhat conterbalancing White's advantage, as Banas had to always keep an eye on this pawn. Well, not anymore!

<50...f6> Of course not 50...Rxb6? 51.Ra8#)

<52.f4?! gxf4 53.gxf4 > Banas is missing a nice tactics here: 52.Ra8+! Kf7 53.Rh8! Kg6 54.Rg8+! Kxh6 (not 54...Kf7 55.Rg7+) 55.Re8! Ra4 56.Bc3! Ra3 57.Bd4! followed with Rxe7.

<58.Bd4?! Rb3+!> 58.Bc3! b5 (if 58...Rb3 59.Rc8 b5 60.Kf4! b4 61.Bd2! Rh3 62.Ke4! b3 63.Rb8 ) 59.Bd2! Rd1 60.Be3! b4 61.Ra5 b3 62.Rb5 b2 63.Rxb2 Rxd5 64.Kf4

<60...Rd2?? 61.Kf3! > This time the carrots are cooked! This apparently innocent check with the rook is almost losing on the spot! 60...Ke8! retaining a chance of saving the game.

<66...Ra8> The b7 pawn could not be maintained, as White had the maneuver Bf4-e3-a7 for example.

<70.Rb3> Carlsen resigned after this move, as he cannot prevent the white rook from swinging to the other side of the board by Rb3-g3-g7.

Apparently this was Carlsen's longest tournament game so far.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Messiah: 'Going Full Bananas'

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