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Vladimir Kramnik vs Levon Aronian
Tal Memorial (2012), Moscow RUS, rd 4, Jun-12
Four Knights Game: Scotch Variation. Accepted (C47)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-12-12  whiteshark: First-in,
Jun-12-12  chess defense: What had gone wrong with the ruy lopez!!..a four knights draw was too predictable...
Jun-12-12  Eyal: In their recent match, these two actually played a rather wild and exciting game in the four knights (Kramnik vs Aronian, 2012) - but there Aronian "obliged" by playing 5...Bc5; here he went for the standard 5...Bb4, which is considered as best for equalizing.
Jun-12-12  310metaltrader: why not 20 rxe4
Jun-12-12  pablo333: <310metaltrader: why not 20 rxe4> I am also curious as to why Kramnik did not play this move. In hazarding a guess, I can only conclude that 20 Rxe4 forces 20... Kf7 - when black would be threatening 21... Bd7 (which would disrupt white's "Rook Queen Rook" formation on the e-file). Black's loss of a pawn in this line is balanced by the fact that white's queen-side pawns are very weak. Therefore: maybe 20 Rxe4 leads to no more than eqality, and Kramnik wanted more???
Jun-12-12  pablo333: I admire Vladimir Kramnik for playing the Four Knights Scotch Game. The Ruy Lopez has - in the last decade - become unplayable due to the Berlin Defense leading (almost) to a forced draw. Maybe the Four Knights Scotch is the shape of things to come (in the 1 e4 e5 openings); I certainly hope it is.
Jun-12-12  Ulhumbrus: On 20 Rxe5 Black can afford to play eg 20...Bd7 because White's queen is in front of his queem's rook after 21 Rxe8+ Rxe8.
Jun-15-12  Eyal: Apparently Kramnik's <10.h3> (instead of the nearly automatic Bg5 - Opening Explorer) is an interesting new conception.

<He played the Scotch Four Knights, revisiting the opening from his victory in game 3 of his April match against Aronian. There Aronian played the rare 5...Bc5; this time he went for the main line with 5...Bb4. Commentators of that earlier game (myself included) wondered why Kramnik headed for such an insipid line; today, we got our answer. Instead of 10.Bg5, which had been played almost 6000 times in the database (and surely hundreds of thousands of times in other games), Kramnik chose 10.h3, which appears in only eight database games. But is it good? In the game it worked very well, and Kramnik obtained a comfortable edge. But during the game, I didn't understand why, after 10.h3 Re8 11.Qf3 c6 12.Bf4, Aronian chose the passive and awkward-looking 12...Bd7 rather than 12...Bd6. I just now consulted with my engine, and it too likes ...Bd6. Further, it has no interest whatsoever in Black's putting the light-squared bishop anywhere but e6. So I'm not sold on Kramnik's idea as the start of a new chapter in the biography of the Scotch Four Knights.> (From Dennis Monokroussos' blog,

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