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Magnus Carlsen vs Nikola Djukic
Tromso Olympiad (2014), Tromso NOR, rd 3, Aug-04
Scandinavian Defense: Ilundain Variation (B01)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-04-14  Sokrates: Clever manoeuvering by the champ. 30.Qa1 poisons the pawn on c4, and makes the "attack" with 30.-h5 look a bit desperate. When I look at Djukic's play I think, well, that wasn't that bad. But it's the 10 % extra, Carlsen adds to the quality of the moves that makes come out the winner.
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  perfidious: This game makes a strange impression compared to the following early outing with 3....Qd8: Alekhine vs Schlechter, 1911, what with the double fianchetto and all.
Aug-04-14  Rolfo: < But it's the 10 % extra, Carlsen adds to the quality of the moves that makes come out the winner.>

And he sees a little thing here and there that his opponents don't see till it's too late

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Rolfo> Or Carlsen judges this or that finesse just a bit more capably.

Ran into this a lot when I faced titled players and can only imagine the difficulty a player of Djukic's strength would have in facing one of the elite. Must be hard enough grinding it out against the standard international-level opposition he faces.

Aug-04-14  visayanbraindoctor: <Sokrates: Clever manoeuvering by the champ. 30.Qa1 >

Carlsen is the only top class player today who seems comfortable in maneuvering his Queen into the backrank.

This game is typical of the World Champion. He maintains a sound pawn structure while making sure his pieces are coordinated and active, then steadily grabs squares, files, and diagonals away from his opponent. At the same time he peruses through all variations in about a 5 moves radius, and avoids possible tactical shots from his opponents. Gives the impression of a crocodile steadily rising up the swamp to grab a swimming prey. The only World Champions to regularly play in this manner IMO are Petrosian and Karpov, although they all had their peculiarities. This kind of style, often misunderstood as dry and boring, wins games in a relatively safe but effective manner, and is a must to study for positional players.

Aug-05-14  visayanbraindoctor: <perfidious: This game makes a strange impression compared to the following early outing with 3....Qd8: Alekhine vs Schlechter, 1911>

If Schlecter managed to beat Lasker and become World Champion, I would have to modify my statement into <The only World Champions to regularly play in this manner IMO are Petrosian and Karpov and Schlecter>

Aug-05-14  Sokrates: Very good analysis and summary on Carlsen's play & style, <visayanbraindoctor>. I fully concur with the reference to Petrosian and Karpov and would add: Capablanca. Those players gave their opponents the feeling of facing the inevitable, slow death by strangulation or out-manoeuvering.
Aug-05-14  rune ohlsson: Anyway, it´s brave to play Scandinavian game when you meet a Scandinavian! (Of this calibre) Remember Bent Larsen dissuaded his opponents to try that against him!
Aug-05-14  Nizman: bishop on g2 sits while droping saliva in anger!
Aug-05-14  Ulhumbrus: Houdini's evaluations and analysis suggest that 21...Ne4! instead of 21...Nf8 equalizes, and that White can then do no better than to give up his bishop for the knight.

Houdini's evaluations suggest that after this Carlsen steadily outplays his opponent move by move increasing his advantage with each superior choice of move until Black resigns, and so Carlsen has done it again, winning from an equal position.

Aug-05-14  Thorski: Carlsen made an appearance on Norwegian television after the game and offered his reasoning for choosing 20. Nf3 over Nf5. Specifically, he compared the position after 20. Nf5 g6 21. Bxe5 Nxe5 22. Ne3 Nc6 to the one following 20. Nf3 Bxb2 21. Qxb2 Nf8 22. Nh4 Ng6 23. Nf5 Ne7 24. Ne3 Nc6, noting that, while the two are almost identical, in the latter position his queen is already on b2 and Black has not had time to make luft for his king.
Aug-06-14  The Rocket: Carlsen, clearly not interested in facing the kings indian, plays 1. e4 and puts Djukic away, in a rather harmless variation from black in the scandinavian/center counter opening.
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: <Clever maneuvering> Particularly 22. Nh4 & 23. Nf5 & 24. Ne3 repositioning the Knight to support the b2-b4 break on the Queenside.

<30.Qa1 poisons the pawn on c4> 30 ... Nxc4?! 31. Nxc4 Qxc4 32. Bf1 wins the exchange. Here 32. Rc1 is tempting, trying to exploit Black's weak back rank, but 32 ... Qe6 33. Qxa6 Rd8 should hold.

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