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Alexey Shirov vs Vasyl Ivanchuk
Linares (1998), Linares ESP, rd 9, Mar-03
Caro-Kann Defense: Karpov. Modern Variation Ivanchuk Defense (B17)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-17-08  Nezhmetdinov: This is a work of Byzantine cruelty from the Chuk. Gorgeous.
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: Shirov had an excellent tournament finishing second a 1/2 behind Anand and a 1/2 point ahead of Kasparov. However, this was his second loss with White against the Caro Kann having also lost to Anand in the first round. 5..Ndf6 was played less often than 5..Ngf6 but was, at one time, considered the standard continuation. 8 Bd2 was new; 8 N1f3 had been played previously. Shirov was keeping f3 free as a retreat square for his knight on g5 while Ivanchuk delayed ..h6 while f3 was unoccupied. As Karpov has done numerous times in the Caro Kann Ivanchuk was willing to forfeit castling in order to achieve counterplay with 12..c5. Shirov missed 17 Rxd4..Qxd4 18 Rd1..Qxd1+ 19 Qxd1 when White has the advantage due to the position of the Black king. 18 c4?! led to Shirov winning the exchange but at the cost of greatly activating Ivanchuk's pieces as well as giving him a strong passed d pawn; Ivanchuk recommended 18 Kb1 instead. Ivanchuk slowly increased his initiative until his decisive breakthrough with 34..e4!. Pretty mating sequence at the end. Ivanchuk thought the key to the game was the weak White queen knight who traveled from c3 to e4 to g5 to h3 before getting marooned at g1.

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