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Ivan Saric vs Magnus Carlsen
Tromso Olympiad (2014), Tromso NOR, rd 10, Aug-12
Spanish Game: Bird Variation (C61)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Aug-13-14  zanzibar: Picture of opponents at start of game:

<Prime Minister Erna Solberg made the first move for Norway's chess champion Magnus Carlsen as he faced off against Ivan Saric from Croatia. PHOTO: Statsministerens kontor>

* * * * *

For some opening variations after 6...Nxe4 see my profile here:

zanzibar chessforum

Aug-13-14  Strelets: Šarić plays excellent chess in the difficult situation of playing a world champion who, in preparation for his fifteen guinea stake matches against Blackburne and Löwenthal, has decided to dust off an inferior but highly trappy Spanish line.
Premium Chessgames Member
  piltdown man: Magnus in self destruct mode. Hope he improves before November.
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <piltdown man> I don't think you have to worry about Carlsen playing Bird's Defense against Anand.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <conrag: The number of moves is an indication of quality.>

So if the opponents had battled for ninety moves and one then blundered, that would be a better game than what went here?

Yeah, I'm convinced.

Aug-14-14  kellmano: <He did note that he thinks the air was thick inside the hall in Tromsø where 650 chess matches are being played simultaneously. “It’s fine that there are lots of people and that the prime minister is looking on, but it’s different conditions than what I’m used to,” he told reporters. “There are simply more people fighting for the same air.”

Carlsen had no desire to make excuses, though,

Beautiful. I sincerely hope the author is being sarcastic.

Like people say I'm not racist but ......, sportsfolk get away with 'excuse excuse excuse, but I'm not making excuses'

Aug-14-14  AlexandraThess: That Karlsson punk does not know elementary opening theory. We can safely assume that he is the weakest world champion in the history of the game!
Aug-14-14  MountainMatt: The temptation to play an intriguing and totally inferior opening is great, and apparently even the world's best are not utterly immune. I do hope Magnus got it out of his system for the next 10 years or so.
Aug-14-14  Chris321: Looks like experimentation gone wrong(but i'm saying that just on the surface,havn't gone into the game,can't say i'm that interested in this game when there are better quality games to rather play through!)
Aug-15-14  goldenbear: In my view, 5.h5! is correct, with the idea of Bc5, and the development plan h5, Bc5, d6, Be6, Qd7, O-O-O. In that case, swift White attacks (for ex. O-O, Kh1, f2-f4, e4-e5 or f4-f5) lead nowhere...
Aug-15-14  Olavi: Yeah, like Bird himself used to play the Variation G Marco vs Bird, 1895 and many others. He knew better...
Aug-16-14  haydn20: So this game is strictly for the birds?
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Bawk bawk bawk.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: Perhaps Carlsen was inspired by F Fargere vs R Rapport, 2010, Naiditsch vs R Rapport, 2011, D Swiercz vs R Rapport, 2013, or even M Vachier-Lagrave vs R Rapport, 2013.
Aug-19-14  artemis: <Excuses>

It is interesting to discuss what is an excuse vs. an explanation, or an evaluation on what happened.

Is Carlsen saying that the reason he lost the game because of these other factors? That is what some seem to read into it.

Another, equally valid interpretation would be that Carlsen was remarking on factors which effected him and which he did not cope with correctly.

Personally, after any tournament game I play I go back and write up an account of what I was thinking and feeling at the time. Then, when I go back and do analyze the game, I can assess how well I was thinking in the game, and try to compare it with my overall abilities. this has helped me tremendously, because it allows me not just to identify mistakes or missed chances but it also makes me think about why it was that I made the mistakes.

In this case, you could point to a certain move, or a certain concept and state "this is what lost the game," and be done with it. But, that is not going to prevent a repeat of this type of mistake. One could argue that Carlsen is giving the assessment of what caused him to make the mistake, and will proceed to figure out how to prevent against similar mistakes.

Or, it could simply be that Carlsen was tired of the interviews and gave this answer so that the interview would be over sooner and he could live the rest of his life.

Aug-20-14  AlexandraThess: It maybe that Karlsson has seen the games of Rapport. However, the Hungarian is way more talented than Karlsson and he can syrvive in such positions. Karlsson cant.
Aug-26-14  Chesschatology: Saric’s play in this game was excellent, but in Daniel King’s YouTube video he points out a continuation suggested by his computer which is simply stunning. I’ll do my best to set out the main variations from memory, and forgive me for any errors.

After 21. …Be7, the computer suggests 22. d6!! .

Now after 22. …. BxQ 23. dxc7 White has an easy win because of the threat of g4, his dominating bishops and his powerful passed pawn.

22… Bxd6 allows Qf6, winning.

Therefore 22… Qxd6 is mandatory. And now… here it is… a move than no human would ever see (at least in advance, in a real game, and with the possible exception of Tal).

23. Qe5!!!

I won’t give all the variations, but for example:

(A) 23… Qxe5 24. fxe5 simplifies leaving White with a clearly won game and fierce pressure against f7. (B) 23… Rxe5 24.Bxf7+! – the point!
(i) 24. … Kf8 25.fxe5 and black is defenceless.
(ii) 24. … Kxf7 25.fxe5+ Ke8 26. exd6+ and White regains his material with interest.

Counter-intuitive, bizarre and simply stunning

Aug-28-14  kontoleon: Magnus Carlsen if i see corect don't have many draws. He maybe play from the win in mamy possision that other players play from draw... This have risk maybe. I dont say heavy aggressive but no passive.

I mean correct game.

Aug-28-14  parisattack: Carlsen is once again 'digesting his gains' as he did three or four years ago. He will pull away soon - just as a few players below him erroneously decide he can be caught.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Natalia Pogonina: GM Csaba Balogh (won the silver medal on Board 2 for Hungary) annotates this game:
Sep-01-14  Chesschatology: <Natalia Pogonina> Thank you for the link! Interestingly enough Balogh does not mention the variation above, 22. d6!! - have you seen the possibility mentioned by GM Daniel King?
Jan-24-15  MrMensa: I would not want to be Sarich @2666 (TPR 2618) going against Carlsen @2862 (TPR 2901) -- on Sunday Jan 25th .. FOR ALL THE MARBLES.. .
May-13-16  dehanne: Suggested pun: "One Hit Wonder".
Premium Chessgames Member
  Messiah: Ho ho ho! :-)
Dec-27-21  Mathematicar: Saric crushed Carlsen in this one. Congrats to Ivan.
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