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Viswanathan Anand vs Vassily Ivanchuk
Grand Slam Chess Final (2011), Sao Paulo BRA, rd 3, Sep-28
Spanish Game: Schliemann Defense (C63)  ·  0-1

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 12 OF 13 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Sep-29-11  wfarmia: good ivanchuk,i know he need this game
Sep-29-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: <twinlark> I was just thinking the same thing: Anand beats Gelfand within an inch of his life, and then Ivanchuk wins against Anand in a controversial match, fulfilling his ultimate chess goal. Definitely a book and movie in there somewhere.
Sep-29-11  Gogia: woooooooow!
Sep-29-11  messachess: whodathunkit. That's our Chucky.
Sep-29-11  hedgeh0g: <frogbert> Because he was fighting to save the game, touched his king, realised any king move would lose on the spot and was forced to resign.

Also, I'm not sure what "opportunities" you're referring to. If you mean Rybka/Houdini's eval shifted by 0.20 in White's favour when Black played a slightly inferior queen move, I would hardly call that an opportunity. Ivanchuk took advantage of some inaccuracies by Anand in the middlegame, seized the advantage and never looked back. To Anand's credit, he made Black's task very difficult.

Sep-29-11  Ulhumbrus: When Anand allowed Black to open the centre by 22 e5? instead of keeping it closed by 22 c4, he may have overlooked the zwischenzug 24...Bg4! displacing his Queen from her cover of e5.
Sep-29-11  sevenseaman: In a day's time <Anand> will play the next game. How do GMs at this level overcome a setback like <Anand> suffered against <Chuky> or <Carlsen> against <Vallejo-Pons>.

Is it morale sapping?, confidence shattering? Or jusanuthergame?

Sep-29-11  bubuli55: I wonder if Anand was surprised by Ivanchuk's Schliemann Defense. All credit goes to Ivanchuk. More!
Sep-29-11  Ulhumbrus: <sevenseaman: In a day's time <Anand> will play the next game. How do GMs at this level overcome a setback like <Anand> suffered against <Chuky> or <Carlsen> against <Vallejo-Pons>. Is it morale sapping?, confidence shattering? Or jusanuthergame?> All three answers can be right, but the last answer is the rightest one. It is what every GM can expect to happen on occasion.
Sep-29-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: This Schliemann Defense is strong like bull. http://www.chessgames.com/perl/ches...
Sep-29-11  boz: The surprise value in the Schliemann seems to be that it often induces White to play it "safe" with 4.d3 perhaps fearing Black's superior preparation (after all, it is Black who has chosen to play the line). I'm waiting for someone to do his homework on the 4.Nc3 lines and "surprise" Black with a serious challenge.
Sep-29-11  drnooo: seems to me Frogbert has the right take on this game. Just I, of course, but Chucky really did get sloppy after around move 30, relatively sloppy, at that high altitude, pushing that a pawn, when he should not have, then not pushing it in a crazy vice versa set of mistakes, dawdling, torturing both himself, Anand and us. All that can really be said is he made the next to last mistake, and that both of these guys are just top notch human beings. Which, of course in the long run, is what really counts. In short, Chuck, quit torturing us for chriszsake!!!!!!!
Sep-29-11  Ulhumbrus: Although the exchange 11 Nxf6 ?! weakens Black's King side, it moves the Knight a third time to exchange it for a Knight moved once, and strengthens Black's centre as well. This casts doubt on White's choice of opening. Instead of 4 d3, 4 Nc3 may be better eg 4 Nc3 fxe4 5 Nxe4 d5 6 Ng3 e4 7 Ne5 threatening 8 Nxc6 and 8 Qh5+
Sep-29-11  policarpo: The games aren't in Bilbao but in Brasil
Sep-29-11  Shams: From the db it looks like 4.d3 is Vishy's exclusive choice against top players. After Radjabov's short draw I might have thought Vishy would dive in and find something in the 4.Nf3 lines, but no dice. The Radjabov and Carlsen games were drawn, and though Korchnoi lost he seemed at least equal at one point from a quick scan of the game.

Anand vs Korchnoi, 1991

Anand vs Radjabov, 2008

Anand vs Carlsen, 2008

I guess we'll see if anyone plays the Schliemann against him again.

Sep-29-11  ArkhamNoir: Chucky all the way! Check this wicked Anand-Ivanchuk Blitz Video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Ix6...
Sep-29-11  boz: I remember that game. I can't even stand to look at it again. Ivanchuk misses the simple Q x h1 mate with a full minute on the clock. Terrible.
Sep-29-11  frogbert: <Also, I'm not sure what "opportunities" you're referring to.>

let me show you two of the clearer ones, then:

1) the move sequence 29 to 32

black could have played: 29... Qxa2 after which black is two pawns up with white only having slight compensation for one of them. play might continue 30. Kg1 Qe2 31. h3 Bg8 32. Rd8 Qe3 33. Kh2 (there's nothing better) Qf4+ 34. Qxf4 exf4 and black's simply winning:


click for larger view

instead play continued 29... Qe2!? 30. h3 h6?! (snatching the 2nd pawn with Bxa2 is still better) 31. Kh2 and now the lemon 31... Qe3? and white draws with 32. Rd6! which wins back the pawn:


click for larger view

so, from a winning position on move 29 to a very drawish one 3 moves later. to me that's a clear case of a "missed opportunity".

after 32. Rd6! black doesn't have anything better than 32... Qf4+ (or 32... Qg5, or moves that lead to immediate repetition and draw) due to white's threat of Rxe6 follwed by Qd8+ and picking up the rook with the next check. after 32... Qf4+ 33. exf4 exf4 34. Nd3 we've reached a very drawish end game (black's f-pawn drops in the very next moves).


click for larger view

2) move 36, where it looks like ivanchuk simply forgot to exchange on e4 first:


click for larger view

instead of 36... Bxa2?! as played, black wins comfortably with 36... Qxe4 37. Nxe4 <Bxa2> 38. Re8 a5! 39. Ra8 b6 40. Ra6 Rf7! 41. Rxb6 Bd5 42. Nd6 Rf2+ etc. eating white's remaining pawns and heading for a winning R+2P versus R ending:


click for larger view

in addition to being practically won, the ending is much easier to play for black <without> the queens on. as we saw in the game, anand could keep making things difficult for ivanchuk due to the white queen and the possibility for perpetuals (or even mate cheepos if black became really careless).

i'm not sure at which point anand made the supposedly "crucial mistake" in the queen ending - it seemed won for black no matter what white did in the end...

Sep-29-11  madlydeeply: Chucky Shliemanns! that says it all. Chucky's the most fearless player yet agian!
Sep-29-11  frogbert: <Ivanchuk took advantage of some inaccuracies by Anand in the middlegame, seized the advantage and never looked back.>

uhm, no. he gave up his entire advantage at least a couple of times, but anand failed to exploit it.

< If you mean Rybka/Houdini's eval shifted by 0.20 in White's favour when Black played a slightly inferior queen move, I would hardly call that an opportunity.>

no, i'm talking result-changing errors, like the two series of moves pointed out above - which both turned a win to a draw (from ivanchuk's point of view), and a loss to a draw to a loss (from anand's, when he got and then failed to take advantage of the opportunity).

i wouldn't refer to any of the above as blunders, but they were still potentially result-changing errors.

Sep-29-11  frogbert: also, black's move 40 offered anand an opportunity (which he wasted straight away - seemingly he played his 41st move a tempo, which may have cost him the game):


click for larger view

here 40... Kg8 seems to win for black, while after the played 40... Kg7? white has active options (the game continued 41. Nd3?! which is natural but which probably loses). instead the following is very interesting:

41. Qe5+ Qf6 42. Qc7+ Qg6 43. Nd3!


click for larger view

white is now much more active than after the slightly passive 41. Nd3?! and we can consider one line that emphasize the importance of "fast pawns" compared to "many pawns":

43... Bd5!? 44. c4! Bxc4 45. Ne5+ Kg5 46. Nxc4 Qf2+ 47. Kh1 Qf1+ 48. Kh2 Qxc4


click for larger view

looking promising for black? less than it seems: 47. Qe5+ Kg6 (Kh4 would be unfortunate ;o) 48. Qh5+ Kg7 49. Qe5+ Kf7 50. Qh5+ Qe7 51. Qh4+ Kd7 52. Qxh6


click for larger view

black's extra pawn is less important than white's "fast pawn" on g4. compare this position to some of the comfortably winning end games (without queens on) that black could've chosen earlier on. my guess is that the above position would've been drawn (there is no "true answer" available).

of course, black has other options than 43... Bd5, but it's very hard for black to win regardless.

Sep-30-11  visayanbraindoctor: When I checked on the Schliemann in CG, it seems that GM Radjabov is its main practitioner among present GMs. See <FSR's> post above.

It's all time greatest practitioner was the great American champion Marshall.

http://www.chessgames.com/perl/ches...

Both Raja and Marshall have good results with it. Raja has employed it 3x this year alone.

Marshall used it 5x in the famed 1903 Monte Carlo tournament scoring wins against GM caliber players Taubenhaus and Teichmann (who is probably a 2700 player by today's standards). Marshall kept on employing it regularly until 1909, when he lost 3 games with it, one to then reigning US champion Showalter and two to Capablanca, in his 1909 matches with them, after which he stopped playing it against high level opposition. Both Showalter and Capa played the more aggressive 4. Nc3 variation instead of Anand's conservative 4. d3.

Perhaps Anand should have played more aggressively from the beginning instead of see-sawing from a conservative opening option to an unsound middle game attack that fell flat.

The endgame was a nice grind by Ivanchuk, who kept on finding ways to retain his advantage.

Sep-30-11  scormus: <frogbert> very nice analysis, a lot of work you put into that. Yes, there were mistakes on both sides but such was the tension in the position, the player who doesn't slip under the pressure problably isn't human.

Even so, ... Kg8 had the great merit of avoiding check next move so slightly surprising Chuky played Kg7. In these situations I would be guided by the priciple "when in doubt, give check" So again surprising Vishy didnt play Qe5+. These alternative moves for both players seem too obvious to have been overlooked, so maybe they considered and rejected them.

Whatever, a great heavyweight battle that kept me up till after 1 a.m. here in Europe.

Sep-30-11  arkansaw: days of Anand's imminent retirement are not far off :(
Sep-30-11  sevenseaman: This loss is going to rankle as Anand got outplayed in the opening, a much favored one for Anand I think.
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