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Vladimir Kramnik vs Boris Gelfand
Belgrade Investbank (1997), Belgrade SRB, rd 6, Nov-17
King's Indian Defense: Orthodox Variation. Bayonet Attack Sokolov's Line (E97)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: This was the 4th time since mid 1996 that Kramnik and Gelfand had faced off in the Bayonet variation (9 b4) Kramnik had won in Vienna 1996; the other three were drawn. 13 Be3 was a specialty of Kramniks with the idea of provoking ..f4. 13..h6, 13..cxd and 13..Kh8 are probably better responses. 17 b5 was new; 17 Qb3 had been played previously. Stohl was critical of 20..dxc recommending 20..Rd8 with the idea of..d5. 20 Qc1! with the idea of Bd1 and Bb3 ensured a large advantage for Kramnik. Gelfand could not find an alternative to spending several tempi to exchange queens. With 34..c5 Gelfand sacrificed his kingside pawns for counterplay which seemed like his best practical chance of saving the game. Kramnik felt that 42..Rb2 was an error. After 42..Rc4 43 Bxe5..Rb2 44 Rxb2..cxb 45 Rb6..Nd7 46 Rb7..b1Q
47 Rxb1..Nxe5 the game would likely have been drawn. 52 Bc3 was clever taking away the e1 square for the rook after Kd3. Kramnik and Stohl were both critical of 55 Ra6? recommending either 55 Rg6 or 55 Bf6+ as clearly winning. Kramnik may have underestimated 59..Rg4 after which it was difficult to make progress. 61 Bf2? was Kramnik's last error leading to a drawn game. 61 Ra6 or 61 Ke3 would have maintained winning chances. Kramnik noted that 62 Ke2..Ne4 63 Kf3..Nxf2 64 Kxf2..Kf6 65 Kf3..Rb4 66 g4..Kg5 draws. 65 Rg6 would have been met by 65..Nh3! again illustrating the drawback of the bishop being on f2.
Jun-26-14  Bowen Island: With move 23 Qc1 White repositions his Bishops to create greater scope/pressure on Black's camp.

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