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Teimour Radjabov vs Vladimir Kramnik
Tal Memorial (2012), Moscow RUS, rd 3, Jun-10
Spanish Game: Berlin Defense (C65)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 5 OF 5 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jun-10-12  tarek1: Qh2? seemed to me a not-so great move from Aronian. McShane completely winning now
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  Eyal: Now, after 35.Qh2(?) Qxf3, Black should definitely be winning :

click for larger view

There's the possibility of Qe4+ followed by Qb1+, winning the rook on a2 (or Rd8 in case of Kf2).

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  Eyal: Btw, don't forget there's a 30-seconds increment for each move.
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  whiteshark: <tarek> or here:
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  chancho: Aronian is going down in flames.
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  whiteshark: Grishuk has a big time cushion of 2m44s for 12 moves (+increments, tks <Eyal>)
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  Eyal: Yea, Aronian resigned after 38...Qf3+. Bravo Luke!! What a gutsy game.
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  chancho: Aronian showed cojones playing with only a few minutes on his clock.
Jun-10-12  tarek1: Aronian resigned after Qf3+. What a game ! Crazy exchange sac in the QGA, I wonder if this is known or not
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: 1st major upset or did I miss something?
Jun-10-12  tarek1: <whiteshark> thanks ! I was looking for this link as well, couldn't find it.
Jun-10-12  karnak64: Wow, just checked in on the Nakamura-Tomashevsky game -- when's the last time we saw a Falkbeer at this level? 1883? '87?
Jun-10-12  Jack Kerouac: I still like Knight x Rook pawn. Complications abound. Burrough's feels the position may be 'The Ticket that Exploded'.
Jun-10-12  acirce: Well, it wasn't a Falkbeer. Falkbeer is 3..e4. This was just a way of playing the Modern (2..exf4 3.Nf3 d5) but without allowing 3.Bc4.
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  maturner: Bravo for McShane. What a spectacular game!
Jun-10-12  tarek1: I just checked Chessbase, it appears that the exchange sac played by McShane was played only once in this game

P San Segundo-Carrillo vs T Luther, 2002

White played Ra7 instead of Ra1 and gave back the exchange immediately. Black won that game nonetheless.

Jun-10-12  karnak64: <acirce>: yeah, it transposed to a Modern, but it started out 1. e4 e5 2. f4 d5 so for at least a moment it could have been ... nice to see that.
Jun-10-12  tarek1: <karnak64>

Check this

Carlsen vs Wang Yue, 2010

Jun-10-12  Cemoblanca: Grischuk VS Moro LIVE on

At the moment it looks drawish, if Black defends well! Good luck Moro! ;0)

Jun-10-12  Cemoblanca: Amazing defense by Moro! Very interesting game!
Jun-10-12  karnak64: <tarek1>: interesting game, thanks. I played with the database a bit and saw that feigning the Falkbeer to get to the Modern is a small trend starting around 2006 or so. Still, very rare at this level, so fun to see.
Jun-10-12  Ulhumbrus: One question is whether at the end White can open a file for a rook or return the exchange for a pawn. One sequence is 26 Qd2 Qc5 27 b4 cb 28 Bxb3 f5 29 ef Nxf5 30 Nxf5 Bxf5 31 Rxf8+ Kxf8 32 Ng5 h6 33 Ne4 Bxe4 34 Rxe4 Ba5 35 Rxf4+ exf4 36 Qxf4+ Kg8 37 Bc2 with an attack on the white squares
Jun-11-12  visayanbraindoctor: With 14.. Nh5, Kramnik may have embarked on a mistaken plan to activate his Knights on the Kingside, where they would end up biting on granite. Raja with 15. Bg5 induced f6, which effectively strands the h5 knight and creates a permanent weakness on e6. By move 17, I would say that white has a huge positional advantage as Black is effectively playing minus two knights on the queenside, which means that if White can open up that flank he would be virtually winning.

Knowing that Radjabov would try to do so with a4, Kramnik apparently decided to sac the exchange with the sequence of moves from 17.. Ne7 to 20.. Be3, and in compensation obtained a powerful dark squared bishop raking the a7-g1 diagonal unopposed; while the white Rooks are attacking nothing on the a-file. Short on time Raja decided to take the repetition.

IMO a lucky escape by Kramnik. Or perhaps a reflection of his chess strength; as not many chess players would think of doing such an early exchange sac in a position that is still not clearly lost but on the process of going downhill. Without this sac, Black would be on the receiving end of a long Spanish torture with no clear way out; and IMO would probably have lost in the end against a master of Radjabov's caliber.

Jun-11-12  Atking: It seems we feel on the same way again <visayanbraindoctor>. Seeing the opening phase I asking myself if 14...Nf4 was not the right move order for Kramnik strategical plan. But one can't play each day perfectly. The previous game was very impressive.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: Vladislav Tkachiev on the game:

<It seemed as though Kramnik got out of the opening without any problems. I'd say it all went beautifully. But then, it seems to me, he underestimated some dynamic factors connected to 18.a4 and the fact that in some lines a7 would hang and the white knight was rushing to f5... He clearly underestimated it! Because the exchange sacrifice he played was, at best, debatable, and didn't resolve all of Black's problems. Whatever they said at the press conference I really don't believe Black has sufficient compensation in the final position. I think White has a clear advantage. And all of a sudden, a draw! After a successful opening Kramnik "drifted", and he clearly underestimated the dynamic resources in the position. In some ways you can understand Radjabov: 2 out of 2, the rest day, you don't want to take a risk. But nevertheless, nevertheless... I wouldn't have agreed.

You need to play such positions with White and try to win them. After all, Black should be the one who needs to prove he's got something, who needs to look for chances. White, meanwhile, can make moves based on general considerations, stabilise after Nf1-e3 and so on. In my view 2 out of 2 in such a situation is more of a motivating factor to play such a position than not to play it! Radjabov felt otherwise. Well, he's got the right to choose.

It seems to me that you can agree to a draw in such a position if you want to spend a long time in the top 10, but it's no good to agree to a draw if you want at some point to become World Champion! That's my slightly extreme view...> (

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