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Viswanathan Anand vs Boris Gelfand
Corus Group A (2006), Wijk aan Zee NED, rd 13, Jan-29
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation (B90)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 18 OF 18 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jan-29-06  euripides: <ahmadov> I take it your question refers to move 66, at the end of the game (it seems some other posters also need to check their move numbers :-)). I agree 66...Kd6 is the toughest move if Black wants to continue.

After 66...Kd6 I think White can play 67 Nd5 Rxg4 68 c5+ Kc6 69 Ne7+ Kc7 70 Nxg8 Rxg8 71 e7 Kd7 72 e8+ Rxe8 73 Rxe8 Kxe8 and White wins the K+P ending because he will get two conencted passed pawns which protect themselves on the Q-side and can then use his king to deal with Black's he pawn; or if 71...Re8 72 Re6 White will be at least two pawns up in the R+P ending.

Apart from <Cap>'s rudeness, I think his line needs to be analysed a bit further: Black could try <66..Kd6 67 e7 Rxg4 68 c5+ Kc6 69 Nd5 Rxe4+ 70 Kxe4> Kxc5 71 Nf6 Rh8 72 e8=Q Rxe8 73 Nxe8 Kb4 and the assessment is not obvious because Black can use the h pawn as a decoy and attack the Q-side pawns with his king. White can probably do better here by interposing 71 a3, and I think White can win, but it's not elementary.

Jan-29-06  yogi1986: hannibal, i saw ...Nxf3 during the game but i thought it lost to Nf6+ which wins the exchange, or a piece.
Jan-29-06  vampiero: a beatiful game in which Anand sets up his position, then steals the initiative to create Kingside anarchy, and then plays a very precise passive endgame to advance his pawn majority.
Jan-29-06  CowardlyKnight: <Very well played by Anand who seemed indeed to have the worst of it after Black exchanged queens> Anand had an advantage through out. Gelfand has to fight for the draw in all variations, there isn't much he could've done.
Jan-29-06  CapablancaFan: <euripides> < (it seems some other posters also need to check their move numbers :-)). > Touche'
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: The bacon-cruncher made it at the last knockings!
Jan-29-06  Ybrevo: Incredible final-round game! Anand played with great inspiration, but during middle-game I never thought he could win. Gelfand did some strange moves. Especially 42. - e5 I do not like, giving away the good square d5 to the White Night. Thx for a memorable tournament and to <chessgames> for covering it live.
Jan-29-06  messachess: Although I do not see the continuation yet, I suspect that Anand's 66th is the one brilliancy.
Jan-29-06  Poisonpawns: Congrats to Anand for coming back to tie for first..ANAND vs TOPALOV match for World CHAMP 2006 PLEASE!!!!!:-) Its only right!
Jan-30-06  ahmadov: <CapablancaFan> <You continuation shows your complete lack of understanding the position.>

<euripides> <Apart from <Cap>'s rudeness, I think his line needs to be analysed a bit further: Black could try <66..Kd6 67 e7 Rxg4 68 c5+ Kc6 69 Nd5 Rxe4+ 70 Kxe4> Kxc5 71 Nf6 Rh8 72 e8=Q Rxe8 73 Nxe8 Kb4 and the assessment is not obvious because Black can use the h pawn as a decoy and attack the Q-side pawns with his king.> Thanks for this reply, <euripides>. Your reply replaces the one I was due to post. <Cap>, think properly before offending others.

Jan-30-06  csmath: This is indeed a brilliant game. Anand has deserved the first place because he indeed came with a brilliant game when he needed it. This guy is in good form still after 15 years of being on top. No retirement here. Great game!
Jan-31-06  sheaf: amazing game, I wonder where did gelfand go wrong?? I doubt as chessbase puts it, even pure defensive play would not have yielded anything here. this whole line has to be analysed thoroughly.
Feb-01-06  alexandrovm: Anand's masterpiece, the game that put both strong players at the top of this amazing tournament.
Feb-16-06  patzer2: Here's some analysis with Fritz 8, the Opening Explorer and two online sources:

<1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. f3> This enters a modern version of the Sicilian, Najdorf (B90), initially tested at the super GM level in Ivanchuk vs Van Wely, 1996. Popular alternatives are 6. bg5 as in Naiditsch vs J Smeets, 2006. 6. Be2 as in Adams vs Topalov, 2006, 6. Be3 as in Adams vs Ivanchuk, 2006, 6. Bc4 as in J Smeets vs Sakaev, 2005, 6. f4 as in Ivanchuk vs A Sibriaev, 2005, and 6.g3 as in Leko vs Topalov, 2006. <6...e5 7. Nb3 Be6 8. Be3 Nbd7> A popular alternative is 8...Be7 as in Karjakin vs Anand, 2006. <9. Qd2> An aggressive option is 9.g4 as in Motylev vs D Obolenskikh, 2005. <9...b5> Also played is 9...Be7 as in Ponomariov vs Judit Polgar, 2005. <10. O-O-O> Another idea is 10. a4 as in Shirov vs Kasparov, 2004. <10...Nb6 11. Qf2 Nc4 12. Bxc4 bxc4 13. Na5> This move apparently comes as no surprise to Gelfand as it was previously played in Anand vs Kasimdzhanov, 2005. <13...Qd7> Gelfand's reply is logical. The alternative 13...Qc8 also seems worthy of further testing, even though Black lost with it in Sadvakasov vs Zhou Jianchao, 2005 and E Najer vs E Ghaem Maghami, 2005. However, Black should avoid 13... Qxa5?? 14. Bb6 when the Queen is trapped. <14. Rd2> An alternative is 14. g4 , as successfully tested in the Corus B section in I Cheparinov vs Lahno, 2006. <14...Be7 15. Rhd1 Rb8?!> The tournament report at states "Anand punished a serious opening inaccuracy....15Rb8? (15...0-0 was necessary."

Feb-16-06  patzer2: <16. Bc5! Qc7!> Not 16... O-O? 17. Bxd6 , when Black drops a pawn without compensation. <17. Rxd6!!> Per the tournament report, "Anand brutally sacked an exchange, leaving Boris’ King in the center, and pawns in ruins." <17...Qxa5!> Black loses after 17... Bxd6? 18. Bxd6 Qxa5 19. Bxb8 Nd7 20. Qa7 O-O (20... Qd8 21. Bxe5 ) 21. Bc7 Qc5 22. Qxc5 Nxc5 23. Bd6 Nd7 24. Bxf8 Kxf8 . <18. Rxe6! fxe6> Not 18... Qxc5?? 19. Qxc5 , when Black can't recapture the Queen due to the pin. <19. Bxe7! Rb7!> Per GM Sakaev at, "apparently both players (I am 100% sure about Anand) are demonstrating their home preparation." Note that the Bishop is poison, because if Black dares to capture it he get's clobbered after 19... Kxe7?? 20. Qa7+ Kf8 21. Qxb8+ Ne8 22. Rd8 Ke7 23. Rc8 h5 24. h4 Kf7 25. Qb7+ Kg6 (25... Kf8?? 26. Qd7 ) 26. Qc6 . <20. Bd6> GM Sakaev indicates "White has strong compensation for the exchange. I dislike Black's position after the simplifying 20.Rd8+ Kxe7 21.Rxh8 Qb4 22.Nd1 c3 23.Rc8 cxb2+ 24.Kb1 Rd7 25.Nc3 as well." <20...Nd7 21. Qh4 Qd8 22. Qh5+> This followup is not White's strongest. Instead, GM Sakaev indicats Anand should play 22. Qxd8+! Kxd8 23. Bxe5 . <22...g6 23. Qh6 Qf6 24. Ne2 Kf7 25. h4 g5 26. hxg5 Qxh6 27. gxh6 Rg8 28. g4 Rg6 29. Rh1 Rb6 30. Ba3 Rf6 31. Rh3 Kg6 32. Kd2 Rf7 33. Ke3 Nf6 34. Nc3 Rd7 35. Rh1 Rc6 36. Na4 Rb7> Worse for Black is 36... Ng8 37. Rh5 Nxh6 38. Nc5 Rdd6 39. Nb7 Rd7 40. Na5 Rc8 41. Rxe5 Kf7 42. Bc5 c3 43. b3 Rd2 44. Nc4 Rdd8 45. Nd6+ Rxd6 46. Bxd6 . <37. Nc3 Rb8 38. Nd1 Ng8> Perhaps Black can hold with 38... Nd7 39. Rh5 Rb5= <39. Rh5 Nxh6 40. Rxe5 Nf7 41. Rh5 Rb5 42. Rh1 e5 43. Nc3 Rb7 44. Nd5 Re6 45. Bb4 Kg7> Perhaps Black would have had better drawing chances after 45... Rxb4! 46. Nxb4 Rb6 47. c3 a5 48. Nd5 Rxb2 . <46. Rh2 Ng5 47. Bc3 Kg8> Here GM Sakaev writes "47...Kf8 is more precise in my opinion, the rook gets to f7, adding the pressure on the f3-pawn, and the king comes to e8 and then to d7 to meet the White's potential passer."
Feb-16-06  patzer2: <48. Rf2 Rf7 49. Rf1 Re8 50. Ke2 Ref8> White gets the upper hand after 50... h6 51. Ne3 Rc7 52. Rd1 Re6 53. Rd5 . <51. Bxe5 Nxe4 52. Ke3 Nc5> Fritz 8 indicates Black puts up more resistance with 52... Nd2 53. Kxd2 Rd7 54. Kc3 Rxd5 55. Bd4 Rfd8 56. Be3 Re5 57. Bb6 Rb8 58. Ba7 Rc8 59. a3 Re7 60. Bd4 Re2 61. f4 h6 62. Rh1 Rc6 . <53. f4 Re8 54. Kd4 Nd7 55. Re1 Re6> White is winning after 55... Nxe5 56. Rxe5 Rxe5 57. Kxe5 Rg7 58. b4 cxb3 59. axb3 h6 60. c4 Kf8 61. f5 . <56. Re2 Nxe5 57. fxe5 Rg7 58. Nf6+ Kf7> After 58... Rxf6 59. exf6 Rxg4+ it's not easy, but I suspect Anand would probably have found the winning line 60. Ke5 Kf7 61. Kf5 h5 62. b3 . <59. Kxc4 Rg5 60. Kd4 Rb6 61. c4!> From this point, GM Sakaev indicates White's win is "smooth and simple" with "no serious problems converting the advantage." <61...Ke6 62. b3 Rb8 63. Re4 h6 64. Nd5 Rbg8 65. Nf4+ Ke7 66. e6 1-0>
Mar-02-06  MoranCho: Certainly impressive play by Anand
with his exchange sac, the bishop
being very strong.

Altho Gelfand trys to shake off the
cramp at move 25 with 25...g5?, one
can sort of see that this is the
kind of position where the computer
would do nothing but waffle (25...Ra7-b7, for ex.), making it harder for White to prove the win.
Note that 25...g5? actually opens
up more opportunities for White's
rook to become active. I like
Ulhumbrus' comment in this regard.

I like 21 Qxd8+ and 22 Bxe5 because
I'm a pawn grabber, but since
Gelfand was willing to go to such
great lengths with 25...g5 just to
trade queens, that must be more
important than the rest of us
realize, and maybe it wouldn't
be that easy to win after 22 Bxe5.
Black is up the exchange, and the
White rook is not yet active.

I like 45...Rxb4! also.

Mar-11-06  thathwamasi: FAO :: <Benjaminlau> Can we consider white's position after move 64 to be picturesque???
Mar-21-06  EmperorAtahualpa: <FAO :: <Benjaminlau> Can we consider white's position after move 64 to be picturesque???>

<thathwamasi> I'm afraid that <Benjamin Lau> has already left this site quite a long time ago.

Oct-04-06  samsal27: <Anand's 66th is the one brilliancy> This is truly a great move. Kudos to Vishy!
Apr-29-08  positionalgenius: clutch game here,and one of anand's best games ever.
Feb-16-09  notyetagm: <positionalgenius: clutch game here,and one of anand's best games ever.>

Yes, Anand wins in the last round (13) of Corus to force a tie with Topalov for 1st place.

<In an amazing photo finish, Vishy Anand managed to win today, and catch up with Topalov, share first place and take the trophy on tie breaks. White against Gelfand, the Indian GM punished a serious opening inaccuracy by his Israeli opponent. 15…Rb8? (15…0-0 was necessary). He brutally sacked an exchange (see diagram 1), leaving Boris’ King in the center, and pawns in ruins. On move 22 Anand had the pleasant choice between what he played and trading Queens and taking the e5 pawn, which would have left him well on top also. To Gelfand’s credit, he defended mightily, but in the long run was helpless against Vishy’s continuous improvement of the position. White’s passed pawns were simply too much to handle, and the Israeli put his weapons down on move 66.>

Apr-14-09  WhiteRook48: I thought white was down an exchange, and then I noticed 3 extra white pawns!
Dec-06-11  Whitehat1963: I'd venture that this is one of the richest and most complex long endgames of the last 25 years.
Feb-19-13  vinidivici: Very good game. Very complex.
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