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Hikaru Nakamura vs Viswanathan Anand
London Chess Classic (2015), London ENG, rd 4, Dec-07
Catalan Opening: Closed Variation (E06)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: Looks like Anand is gong to lose the exchange or his bishop at the end.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: The machine obviously mucked up the opening code; this should really be C67.

Glad it isn't, though.

Dec-07-15  kamagong24: no Berlin? :(
Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: No Berlin. But we'll always have Paris.
Dec-07-15  I Like Fish: paris...
texas ...
Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: <perf> - < The machine obviously mucked up the opening code; this should really be C67.>

Eh? Isn't C67 an Open Lopez? While this looks rather Catalan-ish to these bleary eyes...

Dec-07-15  JohnBoy: I don't see it, <Check>. But I do see that Ne3 then g4 then Nf5 gives black a long and thankless task defending against a deadly passed h pawn.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: After <41...Be7>, White just plays <42.Rf3...> and black can not really hang on to his pawns.
Dec-07-15  Jambow: Ok looks like some of that old fashioned rook and knight razzle dazzle that somewhat defined Nakamura. Interesting since Nakamura's game has emphasized his bishops the last couple of years.

I think Anand has a slight psychological block verses the Nakster that Nak has had verses Carlsen. Maybe not who knows?

Dec-07-15  Jambow: The game also has an Alekhine flavor to it, with the heavy artillery rooks aiming up the board.

Go Nakamura!!!

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Dom> The Open falls under C-80-89.

Just a pathetic attempt at humour.

Dec-07-15  zanzibar: This is a great game, where Nakamura builds up small advantages till he breaks Black.

I'm not strong enough to really weigh in, but I think 8...Nc6 is played more often than 8...Qb6. And 10...bxc6 seems a playable alternative to 10...Qxc6.

Anand played the same opening against Aronian in June 2015 in the Norway Blitz up to move 11. There, Aronian played 11.Na3.

Move 18 is a major point in the game, imo.

(Black to play)

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18...exd5 appears to cede the center, and might be the turning of the tide to a distinct White advantage.

Another interesting point is at move 23, when Nakamura elects to play 23.Rb1 instead of pushing the d-pawn. This paid off, as Anand took his queen essentially out of the contest for the center.

In the end it seems a case of a good bishop vs. a better knight!

Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: the Lightning Kid over-evaluated trading a pawn for bad Knight placement.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: <perf> Thanks. I make sure to know nothing about the dread Spanish... avoid 1.e4, avoid 1...e5, beware of transpositions.

I *thought* that might be your celebrated Sensa Yuma at work, but in this case it was beyond me. I'll work at it, honest - just don't make me play C67.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Dom....I *thought* that might be your celebrated Sensa Yuma at work, but in this case it was beyond me....>

Not intentional...I'll try not to let it happen again, lol.

<I'll work at it, honest - just don't make me play C67.>

And there were all those posters who used to revile a former titleholder as 'Drawnik'--reviving the Wall should be cause for scorn instead!

Dec-07-15  Pulo y Gata: How subtle the Catalan could be! Anand's score vs Nakamura worsens...
Dec-08-15  Ulhumbrus: Instead of 8...Qb6, 8...Bc5 keeps the option of ...Qe7 and a Grunfeld Keres reversed as in the game Korchnoi vs Mecking, 1974

10...Qxc6 exposes the queen to attack as well as the d5 pawn.

16...Qa4 places the black queen on the rim while the white queen is still centralized. This is a considerable concession and Black will need to get enough in return for it.

18...exd5 breaks the rule of not exchanging but letting the opponent do the exchanging. It draws White's bishop on to the square d5 and Nakamura suggested that the bishop supported by e4 was so strong that Black's bishop pair was not worth as much. If Anand has positional compensation for the pawn, it may be that this move lets slip at least some of it. Instead of this 18...a6 defends the b5 pawn which helps keep the knight on a3 out of play.

24...Qa4? gets the queen imprisoned on the rim. After this Nakamura indicated that there might be more than one way for White to allow Black to equalize but Nakamura avoided them. 24...Qb6 may be necessary and now in return for the pawn Black has the better minor piece and a superiority in development. This may be not quite enough for the pawn but it suggests as well that White's advantage is not enough to win.

Anand had at least some positional compensation for the pawn but he had to find the right way to make it count.

Dec-08-15  ChrisWainscott: I believe this is Vishy's sixth loss at classical to Naka since 2011. This has been a fairly one sided affair.
Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: It's almost like watching a bad movie over and over again...

FIDE World Blitz Championship (2014) (kibitz #347)

Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: <perf> Heh. Last year there was a report that the Irish Chess Union were going to ban the Berlin in all events under their control. Weirdly plausible, until you saw that it was dated 1st April.

Kramnik's revival of the Berlin turns out to be one of the key twists in chess history. Up there with hypermodernism. Sigh.

Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: Black cannot get his pawn back with 30...Rxc5? because of 31.Rxd5 Rxd5 32.Qe8+ Kh7 33.Qe4+ winning a rook.
Dec-09-15  marcodpt: I think the end could be... 41...Rb2 (41... Be7 42.Ne5 winning another pawn) 42.Nf6+ Kh8 (Kg7 loses to Rxd6 and Ne8+) 43.Rd3 Be7 44.Rxd8 Bxd8 45.Ra8 Kg7 46.Ne8+ Kf8 47.Rxd8 Ke7 48.Ra8

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