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Veselin Topalov vs Viswanathan Anand
Anand - Topalov World Championship Match (2010), Sofia BUL, rd 8, May-04
Slav Defense: Czech. Wiesbaden Variation (D17)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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May-05-10  Ulhumbrus: One question is whether Anand should continue with his present opening strategy.

That strategy can be said to have begun from game two, game one employing a perhaps unjustifiably risky Grunfeld defence.

On the whole Anand has done better than Topalov. With the White pieces, Topalov gained winning prospects only in this game, and Anand might have drawn this one too, had he avoided a couple of mistakes. Anand has however won games two and four, and he had winning ahcnces in games six and eight.

As for game eight, one cannot avoid losses like that at least on occasion.

This suggests that providing Anand manages to avoid making mistakes, his present opening strategy is the right one.

It is conceivable that Anand will change this defence and try something like the anti Moscow line, something in between the Grunfeld defence where he takes risks without gaining chances in return and the slav where he risks less but gains nil chances of his own. However that could be a mistake. The anti Moscow variation is more suitable for tournaments than for matches. There is no reason to adopt a worse strategy simply because the right strategy risks losing the match! The risk of losing the match cannot be avoided, anyway, so a player may as well accept this risk and think of how to maximise his chances instead.

May-05-10  Mr. Bojangles: I thought Anand saw the draw all along but just blundered due to fatigue or momentary lapse of concentration.

The fact that he did not see or wasn't sure of the draw shows he did not appreciate the position which meant he was lost - not so much OTB - but in his understanding of that game.

Since Topalov understood what was going on, it is fair that he won and deservedly so.

May-05-10  Petrosianic: There's that word "deservedly" again. I still don't understand it. Certainly Topalov "deserved" to win after Bc6... because he had a won game at that point. But aren't we stating the obvious? What's the difference between deserving to win and having a won game?
May-05-10  Mr. Bojangles: < What's the difference between deserving to win and having a won game?>

If you understand what is going on in a game but your opponent is clueless/confused, and if u win, then u deserve it.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: Anand mentioned in the press conference the possibility of "White getting both of his passed pawns", so he was probably worried about the scenario of g4-f4-f5 - for example 54...Ke8 55.g4 Kd7 56.f4 Bd3 57.f5 exf5 58.gxf5:

click for larger view

And in this kind of position one has to spot the resource of 58...h6+! to be sure it's a draw (58...Bc2, for example, would lose to 59.f6 Bg6 60.Kh6 Ke6 61.Kg7 Be8 62.d7 Kxd7 63.f7 Bxf7 64.Kxf7 and a queenside fortress doesn't seem possible for Black).

Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: I have now video annotated game 8 in 3 parts:

Part 1 :

Part 2 :

Part 3 :

May-05-10  Ulhumbrus: Bang your head against a brick wall for long enough and it will cave in, It's only a brick wall, after all. More seriously, One may question whether Topalov will win any more games from this opening after this game.
May-05-10  I play the Fred: I think "deserved" refers to the expected result. If the opponent blunders and turns a draw into a loss, it is an undeserved victory from a certain point of view. I'd rather refer to such situations as "the likely result" than "deserved/undeserved victory"; I think it's a little more accurate.

Or perhaps Anand "deserved" to lose after turning a likely draw into a loss. Just my two cents.

May-05-10  Ulhumbrus: Instead of 17...Ke8, one question is whether 17...Kc7 leads to an easy draw. One variation is 17...Kc7 18 Rac1 Kc8 19 Na2 Rxc1 20 Rxc1 Bd6 21 h3 Rc8 after which Black has the bishop pair and it is White who seems to be struggling to equalize
May-05-10  David2009: <kingscrusher: I have now video annotated game 8 in 3 parts:> Good stuff. <eyal>'s analysis and your video demonstrate how to win.

The following on-line link is to CraftyEGT (end-game trainer): White to play and win from the resignation position.

May-05-10  SetNoEscapeOn: <Petrosianic: There's that word "deservedly" again. I still don't understand it. Certainly Topalov "deserved" to win after Bc6... because he had a won game at that point. But aren't we stating the obvious? What's the difference between deserving to win and having a won game?>


May-06-10  Kazzak: @David2009

Played that to two Queens and Bishop against lone King, just for the fun of it. (If you want, you can squeeze three queens out of it.)

May-06-10  Jafar219: Great game by Topalov.Just great.Positional masterpiece.
May-06-10  dcloh2003: What, ho! Kibitzers,

I have just posted my essay on the game, if anybody is interested in reading what some idiot thinks of it:

I would welcome any comments or criticisms: here; or on the blog itself.

Keep kibitzing!


May-09-10  Archswindler: <Ulhumbrus: Instead of 17...Ke8, one question is whether 17...Kc7 leads to an easy draw. One variation is 17...Kc7 18 Rac1 Kc8 19 Na2 Rxc1 20 Rxc1 Bd6 21 h3 Rc8 after which Black has the bishop pair and it is White who seems to be struggling to equalize>

I'm pretty sure white does better than equalise with 22. Ba7+

Anyway, 19. Na2 is clearly not best for white.

May-11-10  SamAtoms1980: <Nigel Short: I understand Toppy's strategy perfectly well, even if I don't necessarily agree with it. He is not a terribly sophisticated person, to be honest. Football seems to be his main cultural interest. One should therefore not be too surprised if his match strategy should also be similarly lacking in finesse. He basically wants to hit his opponent on the head with a hamster.>

<Bondsamir: <<. He basically wants to hit his opponent on the head with a hamster.>>>

Perhaps next time, he should consider using a hedgehog

Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: Btw, in an interview to Europe-Echecs ( Anand indeed says that he missed the ...h6+ idea as a way to hold the position in case White pushes forward his g & f pawns, as I suggested in my previous post.
Aug-23-10  crazybird: Alexander Khalifman, in "64" magazine

<Black was lost much earlier -- but was saved by White's error.

In the diagram, Black had just blundered by not getting his bishop back to defend via . . . Ba4-d7, he said. As a result White could have won with 35 Kd2!! followed by Kc3-d4-e5.

For example, 35 . . . Ke8 36 Kc3 Bb1 37 b3!! Kf7 38 Kd4 Bc2 39 Bg5 threatens 40 d7 and queens. Then 39 . . . Ke8 40 Ke5 Bxb3 41 Kf6 Ba4 42 Kg7creates a winning passed pawn.

But, in the game, White played 35 Ke3?? and after 35 . . . Bc2! and . . . Ba4 Black could draw.>

Jan-17-11  notyetagm: Game Collection: Knight discovery: Zwischenschach

Topalov vs Anand, 2010 Anand missed 23 Nc3-e4! followed by 23 ... Rc8xRc1 24 Ne4-d6+

Aug-30-11  socoban: This Game is great commented on by Slovak no.1 GM Jan Markos
May-15-12  notyetagm: Game Collection: KNIGHT DISCOVERY: ZWISCHENSCHACH
Jul-02-12  reisanibal: Excuse me if this has been asked before and answered. There is just too many comments. I tried to look at them quickly, but did not see a solid answer. In the final position, the win is very straight-forward with timely g6 and Bg7 idea after the pawn exchange. But if we go couple of moves back, it seems that if black hadn't played 53...Kf7, it would've been a draw. Black could just shuffle his bishop between b5,c6,d7 and if white king comes to e5, only then does black play Kf7. Am I missing something?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <reisanibal> Actually Anand could still hold a fortress with 53...Kf7 - his decisive mistake came a move later, with 54...Bc6. I've posted a rather detail explanation at the time: Topalov vs Anand, 2010.
Jun-05-16  Chessinfinite: This was the last time Topalov defeated Anand for a long time -Topalov's last win since 2010.

Anand stood up well to recover and increase his personal score against Vaselin post 2010.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Video analysis of this game:
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