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Peter Leko vs Vladimir Kramnik
World Championship Tournament (2007), Mexico City MEX, rd 5, Sep-18
Italian Game: Classical Variation. Giuoco Pianissimo Main line (C53)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Sep-18-07  dycotiles: Boring draw
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: That's what happens when you try to avoid the Petrov against Kramnik...
Sep-18-07  VargPOD: Does anyone know has 2.Bc4 been used before at World Championship level?

Guicco Piano appeared at WC-level in the Stenitz era, in Stenitz-Lasker and Lasker-Stenitz-matches, but has it appeared thereafter?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <VargPOD> I remember Karpov using the Giuoco Piano twice against Korchnoi in their 1981 match (Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1981, Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1981) - that was while he was making "repairs" in his lines against the Open Ruy Lopez.
Sep-18-07  ValmonUni: drawn in 24!!!!!!!!

goodbye chessbucks. kramnik is the world champion right?

Sep-18-07  SBGiffy: Surely 24. Qg4 was more least it threatens Bxh6, with ideas of Rh1 etc. 24. Be3 was definately a copout draw move.
Sep-18-07  Kaspablanca: After watching this game i think Kramnik doesnt want to win this WC tournament to avoid play Topalov again but the winner of this tournament, what do you think?
Sep-18-07  chessmoron: Kramnik plays Black and draws. Is that so shocking?

<Kaspablanca> Why? +11 score against Topalov. How can he lose?

Sep-18-07  AgentRgent: Leko played unambitious chess, possibly hoping to catch Kramnik unprepared, it's not really fair to lay blame on Kramnik for it. If white aims for a draw, he can usually get it.
Sep-18-07  Akavall: I don't think Leko played for a draw here, at least not from the very beginning. He avoided the Petrov, where black has been doing fine lately, and entered a more complex game; he didn't get much but at least he tried.

IMO, it was refreshing to see 2. Bc4.

Sep-18-07  Kaspablanca: chessmoron: is not about the score but because Topalov said Kramnik is a cheater.
Sep-19-07  chessmoron: <Kaspablanca> Yes we must believe Topalov words that Kramnik is a cheat but never consider that Topalov was accused of cheating himself in San Luis and also receiving signals from Danailov at Corus07. What evidence does Topalov have against Kramnik? Nothing. Nada. What evidence of cheating tactic have against Topalov? Nothing. Nada.

This is a desperation attempt after blundering 2 games.

Sep-19-07  Nasruddin Hodja: Tsk. If you're going to play for a win with 1. e4 and want to avoid the Petrov, you pretty much have to play the King's Gambit--I wish someone (Moro? Al G?) would have the guts to try it against Kramnik in this tournament. I can already envision 1. e4 e5 2. f4 Bc5 (the safe "Kramniky" move) 3. Nf3 d6 4. c3 Nf6 5. d4 exd4 6. cxd4 Bb6 giving the standard struggle of space/piece activity vs. solidity that is the antithesis of Petrov symmetry. Anyone?
Sep-19-07  BAG: I think there is a mistake here, half the game is missing
Sep-19-07  elLocoEvans: It wouldn't be a bad idea, to play the KG or 4 knights <NH>, but at least Leko is trying something different already.
Sep-19-07  whatthefat: Sorry, did you just say it <wouldn't> be a bad idea to play the King's Gambit at the world championship level? I beg to differ.
Sep-19-07  elLocoEvans: Yes I mean, it would be marvelous - and unrealistic, to see a Kings Gambit in a World Chess Championship. Of course, that's the humble opinion of a lover of the xix century chess, but who knows, maybe next time Leko will give it a try ;)
Sep-19-07  BlackNightmare: no body is gonna win by drawing while others go all out and collect points someone's prediction is coming true...
Sep-19-07  BlackNightmare: whathefat whynot KG or bird or could 1 surprise (nice psychologoical blow) or cause chronic laughters througout the game 2 lead to complicartions sac sac sac sac bang badaboum mate or reisgn lol after all chess is all about structures it could superpose to anything i watched a documentary on polgar who could not reposition pieces on her board after breifly seeing them randomly positioned on a diff. board stuck to the side of a moving van. basically she couldnt compute teh position quickly enough, becaue she s used to classic, recurring structures, anyhow my point is that in unclear positions, complicated structures its anybodys game at this level, or rather only true chess skills will make the difference, giving us great fun in the process... games like this one. yak i dont even wanna go there.....anyhow it really pisses me off when some oppenings are deemed unworthy championship level it is not checkers chess is UNSOLVED and will stay that way forever...hopefully...damn computers
Sep-19-07  whatthefat: I think White would be struggling for equality in the KG against any of the top 10 players in the world. It's just not going to surprise someone of that quality.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: According to Nigel Short's testimony, Kramnik certainly has a very low opinion of the King's Gambit:

<A few years ago I sat in a bar with Vladimir Kramnik discussing theory. At that time the future World Champion was contemplating a switch to King's Pawn openings and he wanted to bounce his preliminary ideas off me. He opined that the Evans' Gambit (1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. b4!) was very logical: White sacrifices a fairly unimportant wing pawn to open lines and accelerate his development. This was not necessarily to say that it was Vlad's preferred method of starting the game, but at least he could understand the rationale behind it. In contrast, the King's Gambit, however, was for him totally incomprehensible: it loses a pawn and weakens the kingside, for all he could see.> (

Sep-19-07  euripides: Both 24.Qg4 and 24.Bxh6 were interesting options. 24.Be3 gives up the attack and I think Kramnik immeditely exchanged and offered the draw, perhaps out of relief ?

At the end White needs to organise rook exchanges on the d file without dropping e4 or b2 - unless he can sac b2 for king's side counterplay. It doesn't look trivial but maybe both players saw a simple way to do it.

Sep-19-07  Ulhumbrus: 24 Be3 agrees to a draw. It seems that Leko does not get a winning attack by 24 Bxh6 eg 24 Bxh6 gxh6 25 Qg4+ Kf8 26 Rh1 Rd7 27 Raf1 Qe2! and Black wins instead of White. There may be a lesson there. Perhaps Steinitz would say that White needs an advantage for the attack to succeed. Can one understand this more clearly? If White needs an advantage for his attack to prevail, perhaps an advantage consists of just those ingredients which would cause the attack to succeed or the defence to fail.
Sep-19-07  Ulhumbrus: 24 Be3 agrees to a draw. It seems that Leko does not get a winning attack by 24 Bxh6 eg 24 Bxh6 gxh6 25 Qg4+ Kf8 26 Rh1 Rd2 27 Raf1 Qe2! and Black wins instead of White. There may be a lesson there. Perhaps Steinitz would say that White needs an advantage for the attack to succeed. Can one understand this more clearly? If White needs an advantage for his attack to prevail, perhaps an advantage consists of just those ingredients which would cause the attack to succeed or the defence to fail.
Premium Chessgames Member

"World defending champion Vladimir Kramnik keeps its scoresheet without blemish; this afternoon, he got a draw from Hungarian grand master Peter Leko, in a brief game of just 24 movements. Thus, Kramnik reaches 3 points at the standing, leading the eight contenders for the World Championship."

Notice the nameplate lists their rating. I don't remember seeing that before.

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