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Wei Yi vs Shakhriyar Mamedyarov
Chinese Chess League (2016), CHN, rd 6, Jun-24
Spanish Game: Morphy Defense. Breyer Defense Zaitsev Hybrid (C95)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-29-16  Bruce Graham: A king walk features in the interesting win by Mamedyarov. Great stuff!
Jun-29-16  Gilmoy: Fascinating explorations of what must be a side line in the B-Z. White plays on the Q-side for <16.c4 20.a5> a protected passed pawn. Black sees no K-side pressure, and routes his DSB to <25..Bf4> in front of his pawn center, instead of the staid Bg7.

<26.g5 Nxe4> bravely sacs an exchange, but with a real sting: it costs White's only active battery. After <30.Nd2 Bxg5>:

click for larger view

White's position is suddenly kind of blah. He has no good intersections to project any power, Ba3 is sad, Black's K is safe, and 31..e3 will bring a strong attack. White saw all that, and promptly <31.Rxc6! 33.Bb2> returns the material to tick every checkbox.

Black still has a space advantage, and some free tempi while White's Q unwinds. Here Shak dreams up his crazy kingwalk, with the implied mate threat trumping White's too-slow <37.a6 38.a7>. White never had a symmetric opportunity because the Bf4 seals the K-side. Material is balanced, position still imbalanced: such is the Tao of Shak.

Jun-29-16  Shams: Wow. Sure looks to me like one of the best games of the year.
Jun-29-16  morfishine: <Shams> I second that. Hats off to both players, this is the type of stuff it takes to beat Yi, and not too surprising to see Mamedyarov the author


Jun-30-16  parisattack: I concur with <Shams> and <Morfishine>, definitely a candidate for game-of-the-year!

Excellent and illuminating comments from <Gilmoy>; grazie!

Jul-02-16  scholes: Bc1 on move 42 rather than 43, was winning
Jul-02-16  parisattack: It is true! 42. Bc1 seems to win for white.
Jul-02-16  cro777: GM Csaba Balogh thoroughly analyzed this game in the latest issue of Chess Evolution: Top GM Secrets (Issue 226). It was selected as one of the two best games of the week (the other one is Beliavsky vs J Borisek, 2016). Here are interesting excerpts:

"[In RuyLopez Breyer Variation with 10.d4] the young Chinese goes for a sideline 13.b4 [13.Nf1 is the main line]. This move is connected to different kind of queenside plans …

Position after 24…Bh6

click for larger view

25.g4!? Very ambitious move with the idea of pushing g5, sending away the f6 knight from the d5 square. On the other hand, Black will be able to sacrifice an exchange with Nxe4 and the weakening in front of the king with g4 might become a factor in the future course of the game.

25...Bf4! The only chance is to complicate the matters.

26.g5 Nxe4! 27.Nxe4 dxe4 28.Bxf7+ Kg7 29.Bxe8 Rxe8 30.Nd2

click for larger view

After some forced moves, White has won an exchange, but Black could finally get some counterplay, some of his pieces are more active and the white king got exposed on g1. Also, some of the white pieces are misplaced, especially the bishop on a3."

Jul-02-16  cro777: The decisive mistake.

Position after 42…g5

click for larger view

"43.Bc1? Wrong timing for this move. It is already the losing mistake.

White should have gone for 43.Qd4 Qf5 44.f3! with mutual chances. The computer gives it as a dead draw, but of course, over the board all 3 results are possible …

The last critical line.

Position after 44…Qf3

click for larger view

The last critical line would have been 45.a8=Q [Wei Yi played 45.Qb2] trying to deflect one of the attacking pieces. Black has to find the winning line with

45...Bh2+!! 46.Kxh2 Qg3+! 47.Kh1Qxe1+ 48.Kg2Qe2+ 49.Kg1 Rxa8 with decisive material advantage." (Balogh)

Jul-02-16  cro777: The Chinese Chess League Division A is one of the strongest and longest running leagues of its kind. Twelve teams are competing in 22 rounds (from April to December). Each team consists of three male and two female players.

Wei Yi is playing for the team from his Jiangsu province (he was born in Yancheng, Jiangsu).

Mamedyarov is playing for the Zhejiang team with Ding Liren on the top board.

Jul-06-16  Xeroxx: holy s**t what a game.
Jul-30-16  Alexandro: Brilliant Mamedyarov!!!

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