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Veselin Topalov vs Magnus Carlsen
Nanjing Pearl Spring Tournament (2010), Nanjing CHN, rd 9, Oct-29
Catalan Opening: General (E00)  ·  0-1



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Oct-29-10  virginmind: missed this game. bravo carlsen!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: These tournaments are a bit boring with all the same players every year...
Oct-29-10  luzhin: 30...g5!! was actually a very crafty trap by Carlsen, because 30.a3 was Topalov's attempt to snare the Black Knight on d3 -- which 32.Rc3 would do, if it were not for 32...Nxf2. Obviously a huge blunder by Topalov -- but Carlsen was playing for it.
Oct-29-10  Catfriend: <Richard Taylor: These tournaments are a bit boring with all the same players every year...> What a strange statement to say about <Nanjing>, of all events.

4/6 are players relatively new to elite events, with only Anand and Topalov being "the same players every year".

Bacrot, Wang Yue and Gashimov are names we don't see much at these levels. Even Carlsen is a top-notch SGM for two years. What <every year> are you talking about?!

Oct-29-10  Indiachess: Topalov could not beat Carlsen for the last 2 years. For Carlsen Topalov does not seem to be a big rival.
Oct-29-10  Catfriend: For Carlsen, few do :)

Kramnik, to name the most obvious.

Oct-29-10  Xenon Oxide: <luzhin: 30...g5!! was actually a very crafty trap by Carlsen, because 30.a3 was Topalov's attempt to snare the Black Knight on d3 -- which 32.Rc3 would do, if it were not for 32...Nxf2. Obviously a huge blunder by Topalov -- but Carlsen was playing for it.>

I don't get it though -- why is 30... g5 specifically a trap? I mean, wouldn't Carlsen have that tactical shot even without playing that black move?

Oct-29-10  jhoro: with 23.Kg2 and 24.Qc5 Topalov completely lost the initiative and when he has to defend and is low on time he usually ends up like that. Even more so against Carlsen ;)

according to the computer 23.Qf1! was his last chance to maintain the initiative

Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: There doesn't seem to be another other move apart from Nxf2, which I find Topalov kind of strange not to calculate. I guess he was in severe time pressure.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: I have video annotated this game:

Oct-29-10  Eyal: <There doesn't seem to be another other move apart from Nxf2>

There's actually 32...Ne1+ as well (to save the attacked knight, that is, not to win) - a check that's "in the air" since Black's 26th move.

Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: Carlsen, in his comments said he "actually anticipated" Topalov's error.

That makes sense if you read <Eyal>'s last post. The Ne1+ bailout move was on the board several moves, and Topalov may have mentally thought he was forcing it when playing 32 Rc3, and failed to examine 32...Nxf2 at all.

That is, Topalov may have been looking for ways to trap the knight, then noticed that Magnus had this clever saving move, and in time pressure, decided to allow it, thinking it forced.

Oct-29-10  goldenbear: Carlsen reminds me more and more of Lasker. He seems to "accidentally" win more and more games. He doesn't have Lasker's tactical prowess, but he's better out of the opening.
Oct-29-10  amadeus: Magnus Carlsen`s Blog -

<<Nanjing Pearl Spring 2010 Victory!>

I’ve won Nanjing 2010 with one round to go! Black against Topalov was likely to be a significant hurdle and my opponent did play very well in the opening and early middle game in the Catalan with 4… Bxd2. With time running below 30 minutes and close to 20 moves left he swapped queens at the wrong moment as he probably had missed Rb2! The position was still balanced but he continuously had to watch out for tactical motifs and blundered badly with Rc3 which lost to Nxf2+. My first victory with black in this tournament. The other games ended draw, and hence my 6.5/9 points secures tournament victory before the last round where I’m white against Gashimov. Bearing in mind mediocre results in the Olympiad and in Bilbao, I was highly motivated before the tournament and I am of course tremendously happy with the result so far in Nanjing. Magnus Carlsen, October 29th, 2010 2010-10-29 19:28:13>

Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: In the final position, if White plays 32. Rxf7+, then 32...Kg8! instead of 32...Kg6? is the correct response.

Here's some analysis with Fritz 10:

34. Rxf7+ Kg8!

(34... Kg6? 35. Ne5+ Kf5 36. Nec4 Rxd2+ 37. Nxd2 Nxd2 38. Ra7 g4 39. Rxa4 e5 40. hxg4+ Nxg4 41. e4+ Nxe4 42. Ra8 Ng5 43. a4 e4 44. a5 (+ 0.35 @ 17 depth))

35. Ra7 Nxd2 36. Nxd2 Rxd2+ 37. Kf3 e5 38. Rxa4 h5 39. Rc4 Rh2 40. a4 e4+ (-11.44 @ 23 depth).

Oct-29-10  Raginmund: Congrants to Carlsen,,,

Only Kramnik and Anand are capable to defeat Carlsen,,, He improved the best.

I told topalov would be the last, Wang will defeat him today. down, down, down Topalov!!

clap, clap, clap to Carlsen, the wonderful boy.

Oct-29-10  Mr. Bojangles: It is fair to say now that Topalov is Carlsen's client.
Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: Magnus: Who's your Daddy?
Veselin: You Papi, YOU!!
Oct-30-10  MarkThornton: Topalov is developing an unfortunate habit of playing very badly against the world's top players in crucial games.

A few years ago, I thought that Topalov would become World Champion one day. Now I think he will more likely be like Korchnoi - the strongest player of his generation to miss out on the top title.

Oct-31-10  alternative moves: Mark, I do not understand the last post, wasn't Topalov the World Champion?
Oct-31-10  strifeknot: Topalov was at one point the FIDE champion, but was never the World Chess Champion.
Oct-31-10  alternative moves: Hi, thank you. To me this seems like splitting hair, though, Topalov was at one point a FIDE WC; even the Chessgames site says that he "lost" the title to Kramnik. Korchnoi never was a WC of any kind, a giant though he is. So the previous comparison did not make sense to me and still does not. And don't get me wrong, I am not at all a Topalov fan, I find Topalov's antics during the match with Kramnik (a real world class chess gentleman) quite despicable.
Nov-06-10  ReikiMaster: I agree with <Xenon Oxide>. 30...g5 is simply the most active play in an equal position. I seriously doubt that anyone would play for a recent World Champion to make a tactical blunder.
Dec-08-11  engineerX: I had read Carlsen's comment on this game that he somehow expected Topalov to play 32.Rc3, in fact I recall him saying that he "knew he would play it", but I can't find the interview now. I think this shows that Carlsen, appart of mastering all the other aspects of this game (calculating, evaluating positions, positional play, openings) is also an expert in psychology and in reading his opponents' minds. And this in spite of his relatively young age.
Jan-16-19  John Abraham: Magnus in his prime is a joy to watch.
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