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Magnus Carlsen vs Per Johansson
Gausdal Troll Masters (2002), Gausdal NOR, rd 2, Jan-05
Gruenfeld Defense: Smyslov Defense (D94)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Mar-29-05  Whitehat1963: Player of the Day showing how maturely he played even three years ago.
Mar-29-05  Knezh: Troll Masters? .......right
Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: Love the name of the event, Troll Masters.


Jul-21-16  Sergash: Per Johansson is a Swedish player born on May 4, 1940; so he was 61 or 62 years old at the time he played this game. He obtained no FIDE title and, as of July 2016, the last rating he had was 1935, though he might have been inactive since 2007.

I found another Per Johansson, on, born in 1967 (in that case he would have been 34 or 35 years old) and also without a FIDE title. This one is rated 1979 in July 2016.

I went through the game with the program Komodo 10 - 64 bits.

<1.Nf3> A surprise! To my knowledge, this was the first time Carlsen was opening a game with this move! Until then, we had seen him play mostly 1.e4, sometimes 1.c4 when he intended to draw, and 1.d4 which had not been seen for a while at that time!

<12.d5! e4! > If 12.dxe5?! Nxe5 13.Qe2 Qe7 14.Bb3 Rad8 = Dmitri Gurevich (2510) vs. Arne Vinje Gulbrandsen (2365), Gausdal (Norway) 1982, round 6, 1-0.

click for larger view

<16...Nxd5 17.Rxd5> The most played, though stronger is 16...Re8! 17.Qf3 Nxd5 18.Rxd5 and now:

A) 18...Qe7 19.Rb1 Rac8 (or 19...Red8 30.b3 Franjo Bilobrk (2348) vs. Mohamed Boric (2399), Croatia Team Championship 2002 in Medulin, round 7, 1-0) 20.b3 (20.Bd2 Rc2 21.a4 Bxb2 Margareta Muresan (2240) vs. Lidia Semenova (2225), Women World Championship Candidates 1983, Quarter Finals 1, round 7, 1-0) Rc2 (?!) 21.a4 Bc3 Mikhail Marin (2475) vs. Glenn Flear (2480), Szirak Interzonal (Hungary) 1987, round 15, 1-0.

B) 18...Qf6 19.Qxf6 Bxf6 20.Rb1 (20.Bd2 Rac8 would transpose in Muresan vs. Semenova in A above) Red8 21.Rxd8+ Rxd8 22.Kf1 Rd1+ 23.Ke2 Rg1 24.g3 = / Petr Ruzicka (2240) vs. Vladimir Nalepa (2155), Morava Team Championship (Czech Republic) 1997, draw.

C) 18...Qc7 19.e4 Qe7 (19.Qc4 Rd7! 20.b6 Ivan Morovic Fernandez (2583) vs. John Donaldson (2456), Linsborg Invitational Rapid (USA) 2003, round 4, draw) 20.Be3 Qxe4 21.Qxe4 Rxe4 22.Rad1 Bxb2 23.Rb5 Bc3 24.Rxb7 Rb4 25.Rdd7 Rxb7 26.Rxb7 a6 = / Zhou Weiqi (2610) vs. Mark Paragua (2542), Asia Championship 2011 in Mashhad (Iran), round 9, 1-0.

Jul-21-16  Sergash: <18...f5?N> The novelty of this game, though it is weak. 18...Rad8 19.e4 Bd4! (Evgueny Bareev (2675) - Vladimir Kramnik (2725), Novgorod (Russia) 1994, round 9, 1-0) 20.Qf3 .

<19...Rad8?!> 19...Rac8! 20.Rb5! Qa6 21.Qb3+! Rf7 .

<20.Rd1?!> 20.Rc1! Rxd5 (or 20...Kh8 21.Rc2! ) 21.Qxd5+ Kh8 22.Rc2! .

<23.Rd4> A move played for the show? 23.Rd3! / .

<23...Rc8?> A mate in 14 moves would follow 23...Bxd4?? 24.Qxd4+! Kg8 25.Qh8+ Kf7 26.Qxh7+ Ke6 27.Qxc7 etc. and mate 10 moves later.

But Johansson should have made some space for his king: 23...h6 24.Qd7! Qxd7 25.Rxd7 Bxc3! 26.bxc3 Rf6! 27.Rxb7 Ra6 28.Rb2 Kg7 with some hope left, despite being 2 pawns down.

<24.Qe6 Rd8> The threat was Rd4-d7. But even better could be 24.g4! . But most players would think twice before exposing their king further with the queens on the board.

click for larger view

DIAGRAM. <25.Qf7! Qxf7 26.Rxd8+ Qg8 27.Bxg7+! Kg7 28.Rxg8+ Kxg8 29.f3!> A general liquidation of all the pieces on the board to enter an ending up one pawn, which Carlsen was convinced to win.

Another way of winning would have been an attack on the black king with 25.g4.

Jul-21-16  Sergash:

click for larger view

<31.g4> As a general principle, it is recommended to move the pawn without any opponent pawn in front. Here it applies! 31.e4! f4 (or 31...Ke5 32.Ke3 fxe4 33.fxe4 Ke6 34.Kd4 Kd6 35.e5+ Kc6 36.g3! etc.) 32.Ke2 Ke5 33.Kd3 g5 34.a4 b6 35.b4! a6 36.Kc4! etc.

<34.Kf2> Carlsen could have taken the pawn without any problem: 34.exf4+ Kf5 35.b4 b5 36.a3 a6 (the one left without any waiting move will have to move his king!) 37.h4 h5 38.Kg2 Kxf4 39.Kf2! (any other move and BLACK would be winning!) Kf5 40.Ke3 etc.

<35.e4+> 35.exf4! a5 (35...Kxf4 36.b4 a6 37.Kg2 ) 36.a4! Kxf4 37.Kg2 h5 38.h4 .

<43.a5> Here also, Carlsen could have taken the pawn: 43.axb5 axb5 44.Kd2 h5 45.h4 Ke5 46.Kc3 etc.

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