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Peter Svidler vs Ian Nepomniachtchi
Russian Championship Superfinal (2006), Moscow RUS, rd 7, Dec-10
French Defense: Tarrasch. Morozevich Variation (C03)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Dim Weasel: I think this Nepo guy is a very entertaining player.
Dec-11-06  deadparrot: 31. f5!! is a very strong pawn sacrifice. After the e-file is open for Svidler's rooks, black has practically no counterplay at all.
Dec-11-06  Karpova: Svidler's play is very instructive. Look at his usage of d4 - he doesn't move his d-pawn there but uses it as an outpost for his pieces until move 40. The Rh5 is completely out of play.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Mateo: A great game by one of the most subtle players today. The way he strangles his opponent like a boa constrictor should be carefully studied. This is positional chess at the highest level.

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nd2 Be7 4. e5 c5 5. Qg4 Kf8 6. dxc5 Nc6 7. Qg3 Nh6 <It could be a novelty. 7...f6 is known.> 8.Bd3 Bh4 9. Qf4 Bg5 10. Qg3 Bh4 11. Qf4 Bg5 12. Qa4 Nxe5 13. Ngf3 Nxd3+ 14. cxd3 Be7 15. b4 f6 16. O-O Nf5 17. Bb2 h5 18. Rac1 Bd7 19. Qb3 Rc8 <Impeding White’s Queen side majority to advance with b4-b5.> 20. Nd4 <A sound move preparing to block Black’s center.> Nxd4 21. Bxd4 h4 <21...e5 22.Bb2 followed by f2-f4 is good for White only.> 22. h3 <After 22.f4 h3 23.g3 the light squares around the White King would be weakened, since Svidler does not have anymore his King Bishop to defend these squares, meanwhile Black still has his light square Bishop. So Svidler first impedes h4-h3.> Qe8 23. f4 <Impedes Black’s king side majority to advance in the centre with e6-e5.> Qg6 24. Kh1 <This move could be useful against the threat e6-e5 and Bxh3 in some variations.> Rh5 <Trying again to advance his center pawn.> 25. Nf3 <Impeding e6-e5.> a6 <In order to impede the advance of White’s queen side majority.> 26. Rce1 <Svidler saw a target, the e6 pawn.> Bd8 <26...Kg8? 27.f5!.> 27. Bg1 Kg8 28. Nd4 Qf7 29. Qd1 <Threatening Nxe6.> g6 <supporting his Rook against this threat.> 30. Bh2 Bc7 31. f5! <A sound pawn sacrifice. The d pawn is blocked by the Knight, which is stronger than the Bishop restricted by the Black pawns (d5,f5). White has full control of the open file.> exf5 32. Bxc7 Rxc7 33. Re3 Rh8 34. Rfe1 <Threatening to invade the 7th rank.> Bc8 <protecting the e7 point against an invasion.> 35. Qf3 <impeding f5-f4.> Kh7 36. b5! Qf8 <36...Rxc5? 37.Re7, White wins.> 37. b6! Rg7 <37...Rxc5 38.Re7+ Kh6 39.Qf2 g5 40.Nxf5+, White wins. 37...Rd7 38.Nxf5!! gxf5 39.Re8! Qxe8 (39...Qf7 40.Qxf5+ Kg7 41.Qg4+, White wins. 39...Qg7 40.Qh5+, White wins. 39...Qh6 40.Qxf5+ Kg7 41.Rxc8!, White wins) 40.Rxe8 Rxe8 41.Qh5+, White wins.> 38. Qxd5 <Svidler has a technical win with his two passed pawns in the center meanwhile Black’s majority in the king side is useless.> Qd8 39. Qc4 <But not 39.Qxd8 Rxd8, because White has problems with his d pawn.> g5 40. Ne6 Bxe6 41. Rxe6 Rf8 <Freeing the Queen from the defence of the f6 pawn.> 42. Rd6 Qb8 43. Qd5 Kg6 <43...f4 44.Qf5+ Rg6 45.Rd7+ Kh6 46.Ree7, White wins.> 44. Rf1 Qc8 45. Re6 f4 46. Qe4+ Kh6 47. d4 Rd7 48. Re1 Kg7 49. a3 Qd8 50. d5! Rdf7 <50...Rxd5 51.Re7+ Rf7 52.Rxf7+ Kxf7 53.Qh7+ Kf8 54.c6!, Black’s position collapses.> 51. d6 Qc8 52. Qd5 f3 <A typical convulsion when the boa suffocates his prey.> 53. gxf3 Qd7 54. Kg2 <Defending the h pawn to free the e6 Rook.> Qa4 55. Re7 Qf4 56. Kf1 <The most solid, directed against Qg3+ and Qxh3.> Qh2 57. Qf5 <Again simple chess.> Qh1+ 58. Kf2 Qh2+ 59. Kf1 Qh1+ 60. Ke2 Qh2+ 61. Kd1 Qb2 62. R1e3 Qd4+ 63. Ke2 Qb2+ 64. Kf1 Qc1+ 65. Kg2 Qd2+ 66. Re2 Qd1 67. Qc2 Qd4 68. d7 g4 <A succesful suicide attempt.> 69. Qe4 gxf3+ 70. Qxf3 f5 71. Qxf5 Kh8 72. Qh5+ Kg7 73. Rxf7+ 1-0

Dec-11-06  DCP23: I've seen reports after this game that Svidler was very angry with himself for missing a simpler and faster win somewhere. Now if only someone here could point out to the rest of us what might that be...
Dec-11-06  suenteus po 147: Seeing games like this does make it frustrating be a Svidler fan. It's easy for us to sit back and say "why can't you play like that all the time?" But I imagine it's hard to create games like this one.
Dec-11-06  percyblakeney: A very good game by Svidler, but he's also white against a more than 200 points lower rated opponent. Engines think Nepomniachtchi could have avoided immediate trouble by playing 30. ... a5. The faster win Svidler allegedly missed could maybe refer to 57. Rxb7.
Dec-11-06  you vs yourself: <"why can't you play like that all the time?">

I'm sure this has something to do with Svidler not playing IMs very often. Sometimes the strength of the opposition is the difference between "spectacular" and "dull" games. Just ask Morozevich, who makes 2600+ players look like IMs but 2700+ players like...

Dec-11-06  suenteus po 147: <percyblakeney> & <you vs yourself> I see your point.
Dec-11-06  euripides: One of Nimzowitsch's ideas was that White could give up the d4 and e5 pawns in the French. He tended to aim at a blockade on e5 when he did so, but more dynamic ways of giving thse pawns up have become very important in the Caro-Kann advance and here we seen them in the French.

I wonder if 31...e5 is any good. One line that occurs to me is 32.fxg6 Qxg6 33.Rxf6 Qxf6 34.Qxh5 exd4 35.Bxc7 Rxc7 36.Qxd5+ Qf7 37.Qxd4 when White seems to get three pawns and superior activity for the piece, but maybe there's something better ?

Dec-11-06  DCP23: <you vs yourself>: <I'm sure this has something to do with Svidler not playing IMs very often>

Obviously true, but it has to be noted that Nepomnyashiy, along with a couple of this tourney's other participants, such as Vitiugov, is one of the world's strongest IMs, and he is much stronger than many, many GMs.

Dec-11-06  awfulhangover: This Nepo is a big talent. He was better than Magnus Carlsen 4-5 years ago. Same age. With same backup, he can be super strong.
Dec-11-06  notyetagm: <awfulhangover: This Nepo is a big talent. He was better than Magnus Carlsen 4-5 years ago. Same age. With same backup, he can be super strong.>

Yes, Nepo was originally the stronger of Magnus and Vachier-Lagrave, both his age I believe. But they both passed him on the rating list.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Mateo: <euripides> <I wonder if 31...e5 is any good. One line that occurs to me is 32.fxg6 Qxg6 33.Rxf6 Qxf6 34.Qxh5 exd4 35.Bxc7 Rxc7 36.Qxd5+ Qf7 37.Qxd4 when White seems to get three pawns and superior activity for the piece, but maybe there's something better ?> A very good question. This a turning point. Fortunately, there is an improvement for White. Instead of 35.Bxc7 in your variation, try 35.Qxd5+! Qf7 36.Qg5+.

1) 36...Kh7 37.Re7, White wins.

2) 36...Kh8 37.Re7, White wins.

3) 36...Kf8 37.Bxc7 Rxc7 38.Qd8+ Be8 39.Rxe8+ Qxe8 40.Qxc7, White has a winning Queen ending.

4) 36...Qg7 37.Qxg7+ Kxg7 38.Re7+, White has a winning Rook ending.

Dec-14-06  Tariqov: ahhh, i did not understand f5 mainly because of the ..e5!? move but there seems to be a refutation in it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: I met Nepomniachtchi when I went to see Pagliacci in Karachi...
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Position after <43...Kg6>:

click for larger view

Maybe <44.Ree6 Rgf7 45.Qe5 Qc8 46 d4> was more convincing for White here.

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