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Viswanathan Anand vs Ruslan Ponomariov
Corus Group A (2005), Wijk aan Zee NED, rd 6, Jan-21
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation (B90)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member We're switching over to Anand-Ponomariov now.
Jan-21-05  ChessMan94: I don't see a good answer to Carlsen's 29. Rxb8. It leads to mate or loss of material for Black.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: Thanks So who's winning this? Ruslan on the ropes?
Jan-21-05  Dick Brain: It looks very promising for Anand here.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: Anand should win this.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: White's 41. Nd1 is a nice move to allow the Knight to maneuver and exploit Black's isolated pawn and cramped position. Wouldn't be surprised if Black resigned now.
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: Seeing the position at 41. Nd1, I was going to suggest 41 ... Re7 and 42 ... Be8 as a joke, to see if Black could get his cramped pieces any closer together. Then he actually did it. So the joke's on me. ;>)

This is White to Play and Win.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: Anand will be de-fact 2-pawns up (and probably de-jure too, he is bound to pick up more wood) if this liquidates into an endgame. And he has a comfortable attack to boot.
Jan-21-05  ChessMan94: I retract what I said about the Carlsen game.. I missed his queen was attacked by black's queen. Sorry for discussing Carlsen's game here. I will stop now.
Jan-21-05  Dick Brain: I didn't at all expect that Rooks were going to be exchanged so fast. Maybe Ponomariov can play on for a while.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: Vishy can protect g5 with his king, then the knight is free to roam. Meanwhile Black's knight has very little scope for roming since it has to keep an eye on h7.
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  Gypsy: < Maybe Ponomariov can play on for a while. > Why? He could not save this against any expert player, let along Anand.
Jan-21-05  Ragar: I suppose they are just having fun now.
Jan-21-05  Dick Brain: Who knows, anything can on occasion happen. Anand might make a premature pawn break or something. Of course Anand should easily win.
Jan-21-05  Ragar: They are punching out their moves quite light-heartedly now.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: < Ragar: They are punching out their moves quite light-heartedly now. > Good to hear. I do not see anything wrong in general in playing lost positions on, as long as the defender is not trying to effectively "loose on time".
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: Let's see if White can force a zugzwang position here on Black.
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  Sneaky: What?? I don't get it, why is this so horribly lost already?
Jan-21-05  Franz the Stampede: I think it's highly unrespectful, especially at this levels, to play on when you've clearly lost. It's like hoping that your opponent will blunder so you might get a chance to draw or win...
Jan-21-05  Ragar: I very much doubt Vishy will feel "disrespected" that Pono played on. They are probably having a nice chin-wag now.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: I guess the finish might be 62 ...Bb7 63. b5 Kc5 64. bxa6 or 62...Bb7 63. c5 axc5 64. Bxc5 and 65.a6
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: I found the game and the ending instructive, even if Pono did make Anand play out the win.
Jan-21-05  Franz the Stampede: yeah, I was talking about the thing in general and referring to Moro's game of yesterday, he was down 2 pieces and he kept playing for a little too long, IMO
Jan-21-05  AdrianP: An unusual and interesting opening from Vishy - 6. f3 is usually a prelude to the English Attack, avoiding the 6.Be3 Ng4 variations. 6. ...Qb6 is the only way to potentially exploit White's move order. But bringing the dark-squared bishop to f4 is highly unusual (no examples in this database), presumably because it slows down the kingside pawn storm (which is the main reason for the Be3 systems rather than the classical 6. Bg5). But there's certainly some logic to Bf4, immediately pressuring the pawn on d6.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: In addition to the possible game ending 62 ...Bb7 63. b5 Kc5 64. bxa6 , which <Sneaky> pointed out, I also like the possibilities after the best defense line 62...Bb7 63. b5 axb5 64. Bxb5 Na8 65.a6 .

With this "best defense line" 62...Bb7 63. b5 axb5 64. Bxb5 Na8 65.a6, also suggested by <Sneaky>, Anand might have won with the pretty finish 65...Ba8 66. Ba4! Bc6 [66..Nh7 67. Be8 Nf8 68. Nh4 Nh7 69. Bxg6 Nxg5 70. Nf3 ] 67. Nxe5 Ba8 68. Nxg6 Nh7 69. e5+ Kc7 70. Nf4 Nxg5 71. Nxe6 Nxe6 72. h7 .

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