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Hikaru Nakamura vs Sergey Karjakin
"Nak 'em Dead" (game of the day May-05-2007)
Karjakin - Nakamura Match (2004), Cuernavaca MEX, rd 5, Dec-13
Sicilian Defense: Closed Variation (B23)  ·  1-0



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Given 45 times; par: 101 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Dec-21-04  The Saint: An extra pawn in the endgame to a Master like Nakamura - is sure defeat to his opponent anytime!
Dec-21-04  PinkPanther: Nakamura would be destroyed by Anand at 3 0 time controls. Absolutely mauled.
Dec-21-04  iron maiden: How good is Anand supposed to be at bullet chess?
Dec-21-04  PinkPanther: I don't know, probably good, but that is irrelevant.
Dec-22-04  OzDrifter: <Shams> im pretty sure that the N must come to f3 early for it to be open.
Apr-10-06  johnwgoes: <acirce> Very nice line you gave.
Apr-21-07  waddayaplay: <SADDAM: But actually he [Karjakin] was lost even if he doesnt trade rooks>.

How does white win after 44..Rb8?

See also

May-05-07  Whack8888: Blitz chess is so stupid, I am glad no major sponsers support that BS
May-05-07  Hot Logic: Hasn't Karjakin heard of something called 'the opposition'? I don't understand why he doesn't resign several moves earlier as he is clearly lost as soon as Nakamura's king gets in front of the g-pawn.
May-05-07  TheBB: I kinda like that they played out those last moves. :)
May-05-07  Crowaholic: <tpstar: It should be very easy for White's King to triangulate and gain the opposition, then pick off the Pg5.>

Queening is indeed easy: 55. ..Kg8 (only move) 56. Kh6 Kh8 (only way to keep White from playing Kh7, at least for now) 57. g6 Kg8 (only move) 58. g7 Kf7 (only move) 59. Kh7 (any) 60. g8=Q

56. Kf6 doesn't work because of the very stalemate that 55. Kg6 tries to avoid, or the usual kind of stalemate with black king on g8, white king on g6, white pawn on g7 and black to move. White's only winning option would be to repeat back to the position before Kf6:

56. ..Kh7! 57. Kf7 Kh8 Kg6

May-05-07  Chessmensch: Exactly the kind of finale that Silman teaches early in his endgame course book.
May-05-07  vizir: <euripides> is totally right

an better try might be 47...Kg6 hoping for 48.h4?? gxh4+ 49.Kxh4 Kh6 with a draw. Black reaches c8 in time.

Indeed white was still wining with 48.Kf3! and the resulting position is winning for white (see euripides' comment), because the black pawn is a knight-pawn and no stalemate defense appears as with rook or bishop pawns.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: I seem to remember a recent game with a similar ending. A little deja-vu all over again.

White had to avoid 54 g6+ which draws to ♔h8! after which both g7+ ♔g8 ♔g6 stalemate or ♔f7 stalemate are poor endings for the white side.

Happy Cinco de Mayo-everyone!!!

Jan-05-09  WhiteRook48: Happy new year everyone!!
Jan-31-09  WhiteRook48: horrible pun
Mar-17-09  Katu: Huh, I begin to understand wy are they call Nakamura crazy...
Jun-12-09  WhiteRook48: should see Rybka-Nakamura
Aug-17-10  sevenseaman: An adeptly handled end game.
Jan-12-11  James Bowman: Rook and pawn end games seem so natural to Nakamura many of his games head that direction, he seems more at home with a knight than a bishop which we know how Fischer loved his bishop on the long diagonal for those that like comparing them. All relative of course.
Nov-11-11  sevenseaman: Rather than look for airy fairy tactical shots, I have noticed that both Nakamura and Carlesen quite usually prefer to take their keenly fought games into pawn endings.

There, their well-honed expertise in P promotion takes control to net them the win. The ploy has been used by Anand quite often. Cute professionalism!

May-31-12  MarkFinan: Would 11..ke8 not be better than 11..h6 for black here? The Knight can still come to d5 anyway, and if it does come to g5 then play 12..h6 kicking It back!

And I'm not on a computer, so someone will tell me I'm wrong and missing something, but If 11..ke8 12.Ng5 (or even 12.0-0 ..Bg4) then It saves blacks c pawn and I dont see any other critical attack for white, that black can't defend against??

Either way, I really enjoyed this game, and might try this opening myself on FICS.. Iv'e never seen It before!

Nakamura Is such an exciting player, and this is one hell of a game :)

Aug-28-13  Conrad93: This is a really bizzare opening...
Sep-13-14  Mating Net: 23.Bxh6! is one of my favorite petite combinasion of all time. White bags another pawn and simplifies into a winning endgame by taking advantage of Black's poor piece alignment.
Sep-13-14  Sleeping kitten: 46...♔e6, intending to play on conjugate squares (g3 with f6, e3 with e5, f3 with d5, f2 with e6, g2 with e5, etc.) loses against 47. ♔f3 ♔d5 48. ♔g3 ♔c4 49. h4 gxh4+ 50. ♔h3! etc.

By the way, doesn't 46. ♔f3 win too, in the same way?

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