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Alexander Morozevich vs Sergei Movsesian
Bosnia Sarajevo Tournament (2008), Sarajevo BIH, rd 3, May-25
Slav Defense: Chameleon Variation (D15)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
May-25-08  dumbgai: Wow, another great win by Morozevich, and against a red-hot Movsesian who hadn't lost this year. Notice how black's light square bishop got trapped by his own pawns and never got any activity all game. Compare that with white's dark square bishop that breathes fire down on the black king.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Ron: Perhaps it would be interesting to see how comps evaluate Morozevich's offer of the knight 25. Ndf5.
May-25-08  percyblakeney: <Perhaps it would be interesting to see how comps evaluate Morozevich's offer of the knight 25. Ndf5>

It seems to be a very strong move, even if engines to begin with prefer Rc2 followed by Rce2. When played out the knight sacrifice is evaluated as better and better, even if 28. Qc3 is considered to be a weak move that gives a small advantage to black. The engine suggestion here is 28. Qe3 h6 29. g4 and white is winning.

Still hard to defend against everything and Movsesian went wrong when he didn't play 30. ... Rd5, and what follows is a well played finish by Morozevich.

May-25-08  Libispusher: Bc3-b2 thwarting black's queenside incursion pretty much led to the opening of the center, and out of the blue comes 25.Ndf5! Who woulda thunk it? Well, it had to be Moro, and what a superlative display of chess it was.
May-25-08  DCP23: This game reminds me of another brilliant Morozevich masterpiece: A Volokitin vs Morozevich, 2006

The similarity is the strategic (as opposed to tactical) sacrifice that leads to a position with an immensely powerful dark-square bishop.

May-25-08  notyetagm: Position after 30 ♕c3-e5

click for larger view

A perfect Moro position: chaos. :-)

May-25-08  ToTheDeath: Actually this is a nice positional game by Morozevich, sacrificing a piece for dark square pressure and an attack.

9...b4! would have been the correct strategy to trade off the bad bishop, as it was a spectator for the rest of the game.

May-26-08  manethos: I agree with ToTheDeath. Movsesian missed several good moves. At move 30...Rd5 was strong.
May-26-08  najdorfman: My engine agrees with everything percyblakeney stated. White seems to be able to force a draw after 30...Rd5 with 31. Rg4+ Kf8 32. Bxd5 Nxg4 33. Qh8+ Ke7 34. hxg4 cxd5 (34...Qxd5? 35. Re1+ Kd7 36. Qf8 Rd8 37. Re7+ Kc8 38. Rxe8 with a clear advantage.) 35. Qe5+ Kd7 36. c6+ Bxc6 37. Qf5+ Kd8 38. Rxc6 Qxb2 39. Qxd5+ Ke7 40. Qc5+.

Earlier, Morozevich could have won the exchange with 25. Nxb5 cxb5 26. Be5 Qc8 27. c6 Ba6 28. c7 Rd7 29. Bxa8 Qxa8 30. Bxf6 Nxf6 31. Qa2 Qc8 32. Qxa6 Qxa6 33. c8Q+ Qxc8 34. Rxc8+ Bf8 35. Re5 probably winning.

May-27-08  percyblakeney: Some similarities between the position around move 27 here and the brilliancy prize winner Kasparov vs P Nikolic, 1992 ten moves earlier:

click for larger view

Annotations at Chessvibes, the Kasparov game being mentioned in the comments:

May-28-08  Magorian: 26... Rd7 wasn't the best. But after the stronger 26... Qf4! white probably also has a winning advantage after 27.Nxg7 Nxg7 28.Re7 Ne6 29.Rxb7 Ra4 30.Qc3 Nd4 31.Kh1 Ra2 32.Rd1 Rxb2 33.Qxb2. It seems to me that sacrificing the knight was fully correct! All though 25.Rc2 also seems very strong.
Premium Chessgames Member
  vonKrolock: <30...♖a2??> 30...♖d5 could lead to a practically forced draw indeed, and it was not very difficult to find, due to lack of reasonable alternatives: In such moments, 'brain-chess' and 'machine-chess' are the same - or: the sequence was forced
May-30-08  minasina: Rybka analysis, some critical points shown, and best line suggestions.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Morozevich's positional sacrifice with 25. Ndf5! assures White a strong advantage and leads to Movsesian's only defeat in this tournament.

While the reply 26...Rd7 was not actually forced, I'm not so sure it wasn't best. If 26...Qf4, then 27. Nxg7 Nxg7 28. Re7 Ne6 29. Rxb7 should be winning. If 26...Nd5, then 27. Bxd5 Rxd5 28. Re7! Qf4 29. Nxg7 Nxg7 30. Qc3 f6 31. Rxb7 wins decisive material. If 26...Qd7, then 27. Re7 Qxf5 28. Qxf7+ Kh1 29. Rxb7 has Black on the verge of defeat.

Morozevich could have won quicker with the stronger follow-up 28. Qe3! h6 29. g4! , which would make the discussion of 30...Rd5! giving Black good drawing chances a moot point. Also, since White missed this opportunity in the complications, one could argue that 26...Rd7 which provided it wasn't such a bad choice (specially among all bad options) afterall.

Jun-08-08  Microdot: Congrats to GM Morozevich for the most beautiful game of this tournament!! In my opinion 28.Qc3!? is a very beautiful move, maybe with 28.Qe3! Moro could have won quicker but I like 28.Qc3!? more than Qe3.
Oct-21-13  Naniwazu: <ToTheDeath> Actually 9...Qc7 is the correct move. After 9...b4 10. axb4 axb4 White doesn't have to play Na4 but can play Ne2! avoiding the exchange of bishops.
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