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Peter Svidler vs Vladimir Kramnik
Russian Championship Superfinal (2011), Moscow RUS, rd 1, Aug-08
Zukertort Opening: Queen Pawn Defense (A06)  ·  1-0

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Aug-09-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: It seems VK has acquired a taste for sacrifying a piece w/o getting enough for it, lately.
Aug-09-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <12.Rb1N>


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An interesting and flexible novelty by Svidler. Though the rook is now positioned to push b4, there is no immediate hurry, and this useful move forces Kramnik to show his hand first.

( 12.f4 h6 13.Nxg6 fxg6 as in Morozevich vs Kramnik, 2007 )

<12...Qa5?!> It is often noted that when outside their known territory, GMs play weaker, and it seems even Kramnik is not above this rule. Kramnik chooses an odd plan with almost beginner-like directness (Bb8-Qc7... Qh2 mate?), but that doesn't really do a lot for the rest of his position. There is little way the bishop is better behind the queen.

http://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail...

Aug-09-11  swr: 14...e5?? is inexplicable. Unless I'm missing something. Surely Kramnik must have seen 17. Rf4?
Aug-09-11  LIFE Master AJ: I am reminded if the great "Get Smart" line ... "Missed it by that much!!!"
Aug-09-11  polarmis: Here's Peter Svidler's commentary on the game:

http://www.whychess.org/en/node/1293

Aug-09-11  sevenseaman: By playing 15. f5 White had dared the wolf to his door. One can hardly fault Kramnik for sacrificing his LSB for the sake of a sharp attack along b8-h2.

The balance of power tilted towards Svidler as he measured up to the crucial fight for e3. I suspect he must have known all elements of this battle before he took the risk.

Aug-09-11  cormier: kasparov used the move Rb1 pattern in other openings
Aug-09-11  kingfu: We, the Chess Community, need to get over sacrificing pieces for positional beauty.
Aug-09-11  DrMAL: I can't speak for the chess community or anyone else for that matter, but it seems the sac by itself was OK. It also seemed (verified with Houdini) that the move 13...Bb8 was inconsistent (particularly following 12...Qa5) and the source of Svidler gaining initial advantage.

If Kramnik wanted e4-e5 he could have simply played 12...e4 (then 13...f5 is no good) followed by e5. Sometimes in getting all fancy players tend to beat themselves (bad judgment calls).

In any event, 14...e5 was only somewhat dubious (definitely not deserving of two question marks or even one), it led to white having slightly more advantage than he otherwise already would have had without it. A better move here was simply 14...Bc7 (or even 14...Be6 back but it was no longer best now).

Kramnik wanted to complicate the game, but he payed the price for it. A much bigger mistake than 14...e5 was 16...Qc7?! instead of simple 16...dxe4. This move gives good compensation for the sac, maybe not full but at least good. After fxg3 hxg3 the h-file is open to double the rooks on and white's knight has to soon go back to f3 anyway.

Yes, the B-Q battery reversal looked nice but it was not a good plan (because Rf4 blocks the Q anyway), in that sense I agree with others who posted similarly (for maybe different reasons).

Aug-09-11  DrMAL: In the later moves (e.g., 23.c4?!) little came from this earlier stuff anyway. The game was nearly equal until Kramnik blundered with 29...Bd4? instead of 29...Nxf3+ (30.Qxf3 Qf6 ).
Aug-09-11  Xeroxx: Kramnik's play is of rather strange nature.
Aug-09-11  kia0708: Kramnik played too many times Queen's Gambit Declined and "forgot" how to play against King's Indian Attack.
Aug-09-11  polarmis: <DrMAL: It also seemed (verified with Houdini) that the move 13...Bb8 was inconsistent (particularly following 12...Qa5)>

13...Bb8 is absolutely consistent - i.e. the whole reason the queen came to a5 was to allow ...Bb8 and ...Qc7, switching the pieces around.

Of course that whole plan of mating on h2 looks a little odd at super-GM level :)

Aug-09-11  DrMAL: <polarmis> That was my point, perhaps the term "consistency" was misleading, as clearly the two moves (Bb8 and Qa5) were part of an obvious plan to reverse the B-Q battery.

By "consistency" I meant an overall plan with the later bishop sac. The B-Q reversal itself was inconsistent to this because of the simple (but not necessarily obvious :) move Rf4 to block the Q.

In the original idea, with Q-B instead of B-Q, the bishop could go on h2 or h4 with the queen on g3 or h2 (all depends on white's moves including order). This would be consistent with the sac, since it cannot be easily countered with a move like Rf4.

Aug-09-11  Fanques Fair: With or without the battery ram, the move
14- ..., e5 is absolutely ridiculous, is typical of a begginer. Particularly as Black had so many interesting alternatives , like 14... h5 , 14 -..., Qc7, 14 - ... c5, almost any other move would have been better...
Aug-09-11  polarmis: <Fanques Fair>, 14...e5 would only be "typical of a beginner" if someone played it without seeing 15.f5 in advance. I don't know what beginners you've come across, but I don't think they usually tend to play conceptual piece sacrifices with no clear immediate compensation.
Aug-10-11  LIFE Master AJ: Computer analysis shows that Kramnik's idea WAS playable ... against a lesser player, I am sure that it would have good chances of success.

http://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail...

Aug-11-11  Ulhumbrus: when Kramnik played 14....e5 and so permitted White to play 15 f5 trapping Black's Queen's Bishop, Kramnik may have overlooked in his calculations a White move which improved White's position and so made Black's attack less promising than it would have been otherwise. Examples of such a move are 17 Rf4 and 20 e5.
Aug-11-11  Fanques Fair: Even if 14-... e5 was playable, which I really don´t think so, it was not forced, and Kramnik had at least 3 or 4 good moves, as he wasn´t in a situation of dispair, or threatened to be in a hopeless strategical situation. Isn´t it possible that he just overlooked f5 ? That was the decisive mistake, he played well one piece-down, but, as smoke disappeared, he was just one piece down ...
Aug-12-11  kia0708: LifeMasterAJ, you are so funny :-))

<I am reminded if the great "Get Smart" line ... "Missed it by that much!!!">

Aug-13-11  Everett: <    cormier: kasparov used the move Rb1 pattern in other openings>

Suba as well, who's treatments in the early 80's on Q-pawn openings may have served as models for Kasparov. Some games in my collection of Suba's chess will show this Rb1 placement outside of the typical usage in the English.

Aug-13-11  Everett: 9.Rbi in Suba vs M Cebalo, 1984

And Suba-Petursson 1984 in the same collection.

Aug-23-11  splatty: Why do Chessbase always make excuses for Kramnik? This is just pants, just like his loss in the last round of Dortmund which took a metaphorical turn on his overall tournament in my opinion which otherwise would have ranked among the best tournament results of recent years. But then Kramnik will never be in the same league as guys like Kasparov, Anand, or Carlsen.
Aug-23-11  splatty: I might add that Kramnik's cronie Svidler is just as bad and lost in the last round of the Russian Superfinal to marr his potentially memorable tournament win, but these guys only care about results and once they have already won the tournament outright they don't seem to have the balls to win or at least draw the last game and have a clean tournament win like Anand, Carlsen, or Kasparov.
Sep-04-11  Ishaan: A player of Kramnik's caliber, IMO, would have no qualms trying out new things against relatively weaker opponents in relatively less recognized tournaments. May be that is why this sacrifice.
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