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Peter Leko vs Magnus Carlsen
Morelia-Linares (2008), Linares ESP, rd 11, Mar-03
Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan. Sveshnikov Variation Chelyabinsk Variation (B33)  ·  1-0

ANALYSIS [x]

FEN COPIED

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 10 OF 11 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Mar-03-08  Abejorral: Nice game by Leko, this is the Leko i like, not the scared Drewko.

<chessmoron> wasnt i in your ignore list ?

Mar-03-08  positionalgenius: <Abejorral> Are you <Bufon>?
Mar-03-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: Thanks for the support <zanshin>.

33...d5 made no sense in retrospect.

Black likely could have played 33... Rb8 and activated both his rook and bishop, without loss of material.

Mar-03-08  znprdx: 28..g6?? and especially 46....Rf4? allowing 47.h6 were the losing moves 33...d5 was neither here nor there...probably played as a bluff in terms of a possible time pressure tactic
Mar-03-08  ajile: <chancho: For the time being, Magnus remains Leko's prison ho. That will change eventually though.>

prison ho??

lol

Mar-03-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gilmoy: White's Q-side 3-on-2 pawn majority inexorably becomes a 1-on-0. What a scalp-crawling plan -- like getting rammed by a glacier. How early must Black deviate to counteract that?

A newbie learns by rote that Black <plays d5 to equalize in Sicilian> (and Ruy). White's theme in this opening must be the d5-blockade for the lasting space advantage. He ends up with a mighty B there.

At 45.h5 Carlsen has a bad episode: <He's turned me into ARONIAN> -- Leko smiles faintly. 47.h6 Leko: <Just call me 'Wonder'>. 50.g5 is cute, as Black's B is overworked. Carlsen didn't have to abandon the h7-pawn, but 53..Kh8 traps his K and glues his R to 8, leaving Black close to zugzwang.

Mar-03-08  Udit Narayan: I can only think that Leko must be a great friend of Anand's, first losing to the world champion and now paving the road for Anand's tournament victory by virtually eliminating Anand's closest competition.
Mar-03-08  SniperOnG7: SniperOnG7: Well done to Leko for a well deserved and well needed win. The manoeuvre of the day is Bb5-c6, which puts both of White's minor pieces against d5 while simultaneously safeguards the White Queen on its marvellous square of a4. Black's inability to use his dark-squared Bishop highlights what Rogozenko in his Sveshnikov Reloaded tome said about the dangers of the opposite colour Bishops in this sort of positions. Black severe disadvantage here is caused by the fact that his cental pawns are also on dark squares, which effectively splits his camp into two - hamstringing any redeployments of his Bishop. Leko realizes this and thus he strips down the position into its basics - ie swapping off the unnecessary Queens and only keeping a pair of Rooks (other than the Bishops) to support the passed pawn.

In passing, it is also interesting to note that Leko did not recapture on e4 for several moves, emphasizing Black's inability to contest on the light squares.

Finally Leko carries out the instructive plan of attacking against two weaknesses. From there on, the h6-g5 prison carried out via the overloading of Black's Bishop is just the icing on the cake. 1-0 gg.

Once again, I think the SuperGMs should stop sacrificing themselves to the Sveshnikov.

Mar-04-08  mindkontrolle: nice job Leko. is every opening in this tourny the same>>>????? how pathetic.....
Mar-05-08  Ulhumbrus: After the move 47...Rf8 can one provide reasons to show - or at least to suggest - that White wins? White has to have at least one threat which Black can't answer. The passed pawn poses a threat, but Black can stop it.

The King march 53...Kf8 and 54 ..Ke7 begins to provide an answer, for it exposes the h7 pawn to attack and capture, a capture that in fact leads to a win for White. So why does Black make this concession? It seems that on 53...Kh8 Black's King is out of play and White is playing a King ahead.

The move 53 Bd5 + thus gives Black the choice between playing a King down, or else exposing his h pawn to attack. This choice has been prepared by the advance h5 and h6, and Leko has given up his f pawn to make it possible.

This suggests that Leko has made use of masterly technique.

One question is whether White can win more quickly or easily if Black tries to avoid the variation 43...Kh8 44 g5 Rxb5 45 h5 Rb2 46 Rc8+ Kg7 47 Bd5!! and Black can't avoid mate even if he gives his Rook up eg after 47...Rxf2+ 48 Kg3

Mar-05-08  euripides: <Jim> if 33...Rb8 White could play 34.Bc6 (or posibly delay this till the rook reaches c8) and it looks difficult for the rook to reach an open file; also note 34...Kg8 35.Kg2 Kf7 36.Kf3 Ke6 37.Ke4 and White keeps control of d5.

In general, it's probably more often than not worth sacrificing a pawn to activate a rook in an endgame. But there are of course exceptions, and recognising them is one of the hardest things - because any strong player's instinct will tell them to seek activity. I haven't analysed this but some sites are suggesting Carlsen's later activation of his king cost him the game. Likewise, I think 33...d5 is natural but it may or may not be right.

Mar-05-08  euripides: Everyone since Tarrasch has known that rooks belong behind passed pawns. Leko shows that that needn't apply if the rook can combine with a minor piece to generate king's side pressure. The presence of opposite coloured bishops increases the return to having the rook on the 7th rank, because the bishops cannot defend against each other.
Mar-05-08  Eyal: In connection with Carlsen's pawn sac on move 33, Leko said after the game (speaking of the position after 27.Rb3): <I saw that this is very pleasant for White – a computer might show that this is completely equal, but it's not. Magnus also understood quite quickly, I think, that something is not right. Probably he shouldn't have sacrificed the pawn with d5, but it's a human reaction – because if you don't play d5 you might hold the position by just waiting, but there are no guarantees; and once you just wait you already can't be active, and then if something goes wrong you might regret not playing d5.> (http://webcast.chessclub.com/Linare...)

There's also the matter of personal style and temperament - Carlsen has demonstrated several times recently that in difficult situations he's best in active counterplay mode. And as it turned out, he probably had a draw as late as move 52, with Be3 instead of Kg8.

Mar-05-08  Eyal: <Ulhumbrus: It seems that on 53...Kh8 Black's King is out of play and White is playing a King ahead.>

More concretely, after 53...Kh8 54.Kg3 Be3 55.Kg4 Bd4 56.Re6:


click for larger view

Black is in zugzwang and has to lose the 'e' pawn after the bishop moves along the a7-g1 diagonal (if it leaves this diagonal - or the rook leaves the b-file - then 57.b6 wins; and if the rook leaves the back rank it's mate on e8, of course).

Mar-07-08  Ulhumbrus: If one assumes that the move h6 wins for White, as Black must then either keep his King out of the game, or else expose h7 ro attack, this suggests that 47 h6 has to be considered a threat after 45 h5.

However on 45 h5 the g6 pawn is pinned, and that suggests that the move 43 Rc7 has made the move h5 a threat, a move which is delayed as 44 Rb7 defends the b5 pawn.

his delay suggests doing something to answer the threst of h5 following 43 Rb7, but the h7 pawn is tied to the defence of the g6 pawn and so cannot move so as to unpin the g6 pawn.

If after 43 Rb7 Black is unable to answer the threat of h5, that means that the move 43 Rc7+ must be considered a threat, more specifically, the threat of preparing h5 when Black lacks a way to answer it.

So on 40 Rc2 White is thtearening to prepare h5 by Rc7. The only way to answer the threat seems to be 40...Ra7, however two other threats are b6 and g5 followed by Rc8, Bd5 and Rg8 mate. Black's Rook cannot cover both the 7th and 8th ranks.

If Black cannot answer all of these threats, that means that on 39 g4, Rc2 is a threat.

However Black's R cannot cover both the a and c files. That suggests that on 38 Be4 the move g4 is to be considered a threat, because Black cannot then prevent both Rc2 and Ra2.

Suppose on 48 Be4 Black tries to harass the B by 38...Rd4. The B is after all placed well on e4, both attacking g6 and the point b7. If White's B now moves along the b1-h7 diagonal in order to maintain its attack upon g6- and so maintain the threat of g4 and h5, otherwise Black might play ...h6- Black can then continue to attack the B.

Defending the B with the Rook hinders an invasion of the 7th or 8th ranks. Suppose that White tries 39 Bb7 then. Then g6 is not attacked and 39...h6 answers the threats of h5.

This suggests the conclusion that Carlsen may draw by 38...Rd4! and then attacking persistently White's KB if White tries to maintain one of his threats- the attack on g6- by keeping the B on the b1-h7 diagonal.

Mar-07-08  Eyal: <Ulhumbrus: If one assumes that the move h6 wins for White, as Black must then either keep his King out of the game, or else expose h7 ro attack, this suggests that 47 h6 has to be considered a threat after 45 h5.>

If you really think that 47.h6 wins by force, where is the win after 52...Be3 (instead of Kg8)? E.g. 53.Re6 Bxg5 54.b6 Bxh6 55.b7 Bf8 - defending against an immediate Rc6, and preparing Bd6 to support Rb8 in case the white rook penetrates the back rank another way, such as Ra6-a8.

Mar-07-08  Ulhumbrus: < Eyal: <Ulhumbrus: If one assumes that the move h6 wins for White, as Black must then either keep his King out of the game, or else expose h7 ro attack, this suggests that 47 h6 has to be considered a threat after 45 h5.> If you really think that 47.h6 wins by force, where is the win after 52...Be3 (instead of Kg8)? E.g. 53.Re6 Bxg5 54.b6 Bxh6 55.b7 Bf8 - defending against an immediate Rc6, and preparing Bd6 to support Rb8 in case the white rook penetrates the back rank another way, such as Ra6-a8. > After 52...Be3 53 Kg3 ( instead of 53 Re6)53... Bxg5 54 b6 Bxh6 55 b7! Black cannot capture the b7 pawn, as on 55...Rxb7 56 Rc8+ discovers an attack upon Black's Rook, and in that case Black seems to have no answer to the threat of Rc8
Mar-07-08  Eyal: <Ulhumbrus: After 52...Be3 53 Kg3 ( instead of 53 Re6)53... Bxg5 54 b6 Bxh6 55 b7! Black cannot capture the b7 pawn, as on 55...Rxb7 56 Rc8+ discovers an attack upon Black's Rook, and in that case Black seems to have no answer to the threat of Rc8> In this line, Black is fine after 54...Bd8!
Mar-07-08  Ulhumbrus: <Eyal: <Ulhumbrus: After 52...Be3 53 Kg3 ( instead of 53 Re6)53... Bxg5 54 b6 Bxh6 55 b7! Black cannot capture the b7 pawn, as on 55...Rxb7 56 Rc8+ discovers an attack upon Black's Rook, and in that case Black seems to have no answer to the threat of Rc8> In this line, Black is fine after 54...Bd8!> An alternative to 53 Kg3 is 53 Bd5 eg 53...Bxg5 54 b6 Bd8 55 b7 Rxb7 56 Rc8 Rd7 57 Bc4 and White plays for zugzwang.
Mar-07-08  Eyal: <Ulhumbrus: An alternative to [52...Be3] 53 Kg3 is 53 Bd5 eg 53...Bxg5 54 b6 Bd8 55 b7 Rxb7 56 Rc8 Rd7 57 Bc4 and White plays for zugzwang.> I don't see how he can get it, since Black is able to move not only his rook but also his g-pawn if necessary.
Mar-12-08  Ulhumbrus: <Eyal: <Ulhumbrus: An alternative to [52...Be3] 53 Kg3 is 53 Bd5 eg 53...Bxg5 54 b6 Bd8 55 b7 Rxb7 56 Rc8 Rd7 57 Bc4 and White plays for zugzwang.> I don't see how he can get it, since Black is able to move not only his rook but also his g-pawn if necessary.> Black's R may have to let White's King come in while Black plays a King down eg with the black R on d4, and the White K on f3, Black either has to let the White King advance or else expose his e pawn or g pawn to attack by advancing them
Mar-12-08  Eyal: With the Black R on d4, and the White K on f3 (as well as in several other situations with the White K on the f-file), Black has Rf4+ (or some other check on the f-file) followed by Rf8 and Be7, disentangling his pieces. And yeah, in some lines Black has moves with the e-pawn as well, which makes his life even easier.
Mar-26-08  Ulhumbrus: <Eyal: With the Black R on d4, and the White K on f3 (as well as in several other situations with the White K on the f-file), Black has Rf4+ (or some other check on the f-file) followed by Rf8 and Be7, disentangling his pieces. And yeah, in some lines Black has moves with the e-pawn as well, which makes his life even easier.> In that case Bf7 may be better than Bc4.
Mar-27-08  Eyal: I don't see how that helps. Black plays e4, g5, and can then shuffle his rook back and forth along the d-file. If the white king tries to invade Black's camp he'll either get caught on the f-file with the same disentangling maneuver or get too far away from Black's advanced e pawn.
Mar-28-08  Ulhumbrus: <Eyal: I don't see how that helps. Black plays e4, g5, and can then shuffle his rook back and forth along the d-file. If the white king tries to invade Black's camp he'll either get caught on the f-file with the same disentangling maneuver or get too far away from Black's advanced e pawn.> White can play Kf2 when Black's Rook is not on the seventh rank, eg on d6. Then on ...Rf6+ the move Ke2 can't be answered with ...Rxf7 as the Black Rook has to defend the B on d8.
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