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Sergey A Fedorchuk vs Alexey Shirov
Bundesliga (2008/09), Various GER, rd 2, Oct-05
Sicilian Defense: Closed Sicilian. Anti-Sveshnikov Variation Kharlov-Kramnik Line (B30)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Nov-06-08  Sularus: What a huge blunder by shirov.

34. ... Qxa4??

Premium Chessgames Member
  Gilmoy: <3.Nc3 e5> Play-action fake! White shows run, drops back into a weird Italian. White's Nc3 is misplaced for the usual tour to f5 ...

<6.Nd2> ... so he uses the other one! Gerard Welling nods approval.

<7..Nh6> Shirov seems off his stride here -- he prevents 8.Nf5 without ceding the <bishop pair>, but makes (too) many positional concessions instead.

<13.Bh6 gxh6> Shirov must have deliberately offered the demolition for counterplay on half-open g. Might have worked against a fish, but maybe not against a 2624.

<16.Nf5> White's hidden pressure on f7/f6 seriously cramps Black's race to g. White's outpost at d5 is safer than Black's at d4 -- because of Black's <1..c5>!

<23.Qa2!> Momentarily overprotecting the Nd5 ...

<26..Rgd7?> Shirov stumbles around in Fedorchuk's home prep. He got his half-open g, and decided it wasn't worth as much as the Nd5. But he steps into a simple tactical shot <27.Bb5>, which improves White in three ways: (a) removes Black's last piece that could challenge d5, (b) clears c4 for a pawn, (c) eats two Black tempi.

<30..Rc8> Black struggles to make something happen on g, but his pieces can't find good squares. Ironically, Black's doubled h4-pawn isn't all bad -- h3 is a concern. White meets the wing threat correctly: with a hard center thrust.

White's QN moved only three times: <3.Nc3 18.Nd5 35.Nxb6>. Very efficient, very patient.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <What a huge blunder by shirov. 34...Qxa4??>

True, but by this stage his position is desperate anyway - besides being a pawn down, he's completely passive and devoid of counterplay (note how useless is his bishop compared with White's powerful centralized knight). After 34...Qf8, for example, one winning idea for White consists of Re2 (to prevent Bd2)-Rde4-Qc6 followed by penetration on the e-file.

In fact, Black's position seems pretty much hopeless in the long run already after 20...Nc6 21.Qxc5; he probably should have taken the opportunity to eliminate White's powerful knight by 20...Rxd5 21.Bxd5 Qxd5 22.cxd4 cxd4, with good compensation for the exchange.

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