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Rustam Kasimdzhanov vs Evgeny Ilgizovich Bareev
Corus Group A (2002), Wijk aan Zee NED, rd 13, Jan-27
Semi-Slav Defense: Stoltz Variation. Shabalov Attack (D45)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: Played in the last (13th) round; this win allowed Bareev to win the tournament outright a half point ahead of Grischuk. 11..Bb4 was a new move; 11..Bc7 had been played in a little known game played in Moscow in 1995. White had a promising position until the faulty piece sacrifice 17 Nf5?. 19 f6 and then 24 Rg3 might have given White a little more chance to create counterplay. Also winning for Black would have been 30..Nf5 31 Nxf5..Rg4 32 Qxh6+..Qxh6 33 Nxh6..Kxh6.
Aug-19-19  cunctatorg: Important question:

does anybody know which games -or which article, for what matters- caused the apparent decline of the terrifying Shabalov-Shirov gambit?!?

Aug-25-19  cunctatorg: No answer yet about the story of the decline -or refutation- of the frightening Shabalov attack!...

Has someone any clue?!?

Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: First of all - it has never been refuted.

Second of all - I don't see evidence of it having declined either. Yes, it was played a lot in 92-93 after it was first introduced but that seems normal for a new opening. It is still played. Early on 7..Nxg4 was played a lot which gives White exactly what he wants. If Black responds more positionally he seems to do better.

Third of all - I don't think players consider it to be "terrifying". It is sharp, double edged which many players with Black would welcome. If you compare the results with 7 g4 compared to 7 Bd3 there are fewer draws with more wins for both Black and White.

Fashion influences opening choices - currently there are fewer Najdorf Sicilians, gambits etc - many play quieter openings delaying the struggle until the middlegame.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <plang>, it is understandable though that Black should choose the 'cleaner' method of forcing off queens, which leaves no hope.
Aug-31-19  cunctatorg: <plang>: thanks for the answer. However it seems to me that it was played a lot in 93-99 and the variations occurring from 7... Nxg4 seem terrifying for me, you also noticed that White gets what he wants there. The truth is that at '95 I was able to understand that 7... Nxg4 was trouble but I couldn't pinpoint then any solid-satisfactory alternative... Fact... It's also true that this move efficiently disoriented the game from the classical variations of the Semi-slav, variations that are quite interesting for Black also.

I ain't sure that it is still played between Grand Masters above 2650 though... I also didn't understand <perfidious'> most-probably knowledgeable remark, I urge him to clarify!

Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: 7..h6, 7..dxc and 7..Bb4 have all scored better than 7..Nxg4. Again not at all implying that they are a refutation but they seem to make the gambit less "terrifying".
Aug-31-19  cunctatorg: Yes, indeed!

However back then, around 1995 that is, it wasn't really a relief (from Black's point of view) to study games with 7... h6, 7... dc or 7... Bb4. It was less of a torture for Black but still a torture...

Obviously the feelings of that time are still haunting me!...

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