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Viswanathan Anand vs Fabiano Caruana
"Sinque or Swim" (game of the day Sep-29-2017)
Sinquefield Cup (2017), Saint Louis, MO USA, rd 5, Aug-06
English Opening: King's English. Four Knights Variation Fianchetto Lines (A29)  ·  1-0

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Aug-07-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: <Pawn Promotion> https://youtu.be/Py6Uic76BUA

0:52

Aug-07-17  Olsonist: I think f6 is the losing move and Vishy just punishes it. It weakens the king, it allows Caruana to go pawn chasing and take his defensive pieces away.
Aug-07-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <tpstar: <Pawn Promotion>> ♙f7-e8=♕ lol
Aug-07-17  Bluegrey: The ending seems to be winning for white after 25...Qe5 26.R×e2 Q×c3 27.Re8 Qd4+ 28.Rf2 Q×b4 29.f8Q+ Q×f8 30.Rff8 Rd3 (all forced up to this point) 31.Rg8+ Kf7 32.Rdf8+ Ke7 33.Ra8. Now black has a few options but the most natural move here would be 33...h5 followed by 34.R×a7 Ke6 (34...Kf6 leads to similar positions)35.Re8+ Kf6 36.Re1 Rd2 (36...Bf3 transposes in many lines) 37.a4 b×a4 (37...Ra2 38.a5 b4 39.Rb1 c5 40.Rc1 b3 41.Rb7 R×a5 42.R×b3 looks winning) 38.R×a4 Kg6 39.Rc4 Bf3 40.Re6+ Kg7 41.Rh4 Rd1+ 42.Kf2 Bg4 (42...Bd5 43.Rd6 and h pawn drops) 43.R×c6 looks winning
Aug-07-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <21...f6?> Don't open the cage door!!!

Game Collection: 94_-> Middlegames with opposite-coloured Bi~

Aug-07-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: <Viswanathan Anand displayed brilliant imagination and flawless calculation in outplaying the American Fabiano Caruana in a delightful mating attacking in the fifth round of the Sinquefield Cup taking place at Saint Louis, United States.

This first victory for Anand in the tournament propelled him to a tie for 2-3 places along with world champion Magnus Carlsen on three points from five rounds, behind the tournament leader Maxime Vachier-Lagrave who is on 3.5 points.

Anand started off with a surprise in the opening when he employed the English Opening against Caruana, which he has employed only sporadically in his career. Slightly hesitant play in the early middlegame saw him concede near equality to Caruana after 18 moves.

However, in his enthusiasm to complicate the position, Caruana started a misadventure on the 19th move, which Anand had dismissed as impossible, but was delighted to find the opponent doing it anyway.

The positional laws governing play in the middlegame of chess often look simple and logical. But it takes courage to understand the risks and still go beyond them and create complications and chaos, if one can possess necessary tactical intuition for risk-taking.

It is the trademark of tactical geniuses in the history of the game, who were able to create such complications ignoring strict positional laws. However, even in cases where the created complications are unsound in nature, it requires very steady nerves and crystal-clear calculating ability to defend against such attacks and repulse them, defensive abilities which are again not for the faint-hearted.

The Sunday game against Caruana was one such encounter where Anand showed nerves of steel and deep calculation in calling his opponent’s bluff. He accepted Caruana’s pawn sacrifice on the 21st move, and went even bolder and accepted the second pawn on the next move, only to find Caruana’s rook land on the crucial seventh rank, threatening Anand’s queen and checkmate in one move at the same time.>

http://www.firstpost.com/sports/sin...

Aug-07-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: <Fusilli: Okay, on Sambuev-Noritsyn, it's here:

https://www.chess.com/news/view/con...

My first reaction is that the ruling was b.s. and poor Noritsyn was robbed.>

I second your first reaction. What a moron that referee is! Ce n'est pas une dame, c'est une tour. They should have said: Tu n'es pas un arbitre, tu es un pauvre con!

Plus you can see in one of the photos that Sambuev has a (bad) habit of holding the pieces in one hand.

Aug-07-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gilmoy: <tpstar: <Pawn Promotion> https://youtu.be/Py6Uic76BUA> <whiteshark: ♙c2-d1=♕ lol> ♕f4x♕c1 e.p. :)
Aug-07-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: <Gilmoy: <tpstar: <Pawn Promotion> https://youtube/Py6Uic76BUA>

I understand why he wanted to make her lean over to pick up the piece, but queening a king!

Aug-07-17  BOSTER: "The horses on the crossing do not change". 20.Bxc6.
Aug-07-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Black's game starts to go bad with 19...Bg4?, allowing the easy win of a pawn with 20. Bxc6 bxc6 21. fxe5 ± (+0.90 @ 30 depth, Stockfish 8.)

Instead, Stockfish 8 indicates Black can avoid the loss of the pawn and hold it level with 19...Bh6 = or 19...Bd5 =.

Black's game goes from inferior to probably lost with 21...f6?, allowing 22. exf6 Rxe2 23. f7+! ± (+1.68 @ 36 depth, Stockfish 8.)

Instead, Black can maximize resistance and fight on a pawn down with 21...Re6 22. Qf4 h6 23. Rf2 Bh3 ± (+0.91 @ 30 depth, Stockfish 8.)

P.S.: After the self-pin 25...Re5?, White's brilliant 26. Qd4!! +- (+10.36 @ 30 depth, Stockfish 8) is clearly decisive.

Black could have put up more resistance with 25...Qe5 26.Rxe2 Qxc3 27.Re8 Qd4+ 28.Rf2 Qxb4 29.f8=Q+ Qxf8 30.Rfxf8 Rxd3 ± to +- (+1.60 @ 28 depth, Stockfish 8) in the diagram below:


click for larger view

However, White appears able to force the win from here with 31. Rg8+ Kf7 32.Ref8+ Ke7 as play might continue 33.Ra8 h5 34.Rxa7+ Kf6 35.Rf8+ Ke6 36.a4 Ra3 37.a5 b4 38.a6 Kd5 39.Raa8 b3 40.a7 Kc4 41.Rf1 Kc3 42.Rc1+ Kb2 43.Rc5 Ka2 44.Rc3 Be6 45.Re8 Rxa7 46.Rxe6 b2 47.Re2 Ka1 48.Re1+ b1=Q 49.Rxb1+ Kxb1 50.Rxc6 Rg7 51.Rh6 Rg5 52.Kg2 Re5 53.Kh3 Kc2 54.Kh4 Re2 55.h3 Kd3 56.Kxh5 +- (+13.60 @ 30 depth, Stockfish 8.)

Aug-08-17  The Kings Domain: Nice Fischer-like victory by Anand. These smooth, simple wins never fail to appeal.
Aug-08-17  Petrosianic: What was Fischer-like about it, or was it just an excuse to mention his name? The ending is much more reminiscent of Game 11 of the 1969 World Championship match?
Aug-08-17  fisayo123: Super game by Vishy Anand. He has been (and apparently still is) one of the best ever players in executing complex tactics and playing dynamic positions. He has such great affinity for them.
Aug-08-17  voyager39: Amazing - old man is still sharp at tactics!
Aug-09-17  Jambow: No doubt some of the sharpest most creative play from Vishy in a while. Love when he plays that way and it seems to be working for Aronian also.
Aug-25-17  lakshashishu: GOTD:"Old boy"
Sep-29-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: I remember watching this game live, and the commentators took some time to finally find 26.Qd4.

In the post-game interview, Fabi said he just missed it.

Sep-29-17  gofer: On the theme of the pun...

Two cats are having a race swimming across the English Channel. A french cat "Un deux trois" and an english cat "One two three".

Which cat won?!

The english cat, obviously...

The "Un deux trois" cat sank.

Sep-29-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: If Caruana can overlook such a coup as 26.Qd4 in his preliminary analysis, anyone can.
Sep-29-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  PawnSac: < fisayo123: Super game by Vishy Anand. He has been ..one of the best ever players in executing complex tactics and playing dynamic positions. He has such great affinity for them.

voyager39: Amazing - old man is still sharp at tactics! >

What players lose with age is speed, ambition, and endurance. But their understanding of positional play, creativity, and intuition is still intact. Anand, Kasparov, Karpov, and others like them will always be greats. It's like great athletes. They may lose the strength, agility, speed they had as champions, but they always understand the sport.

Oct-05-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Double pin clinches it for white.
Nov-26-17  LA MAN: I say don't ask one computer what is best but on these complex parts of the game any good close game have each of best computers play each of the other best computers then have for good measure have one computer mention any move possible tries any of these left out. Wow!
Feb-10-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: [Fritz 10]: 1. c4 e5 2. Nc3 Nf6 3. Nf3 Nc6 4. g3 d5 5. cxd5 Nxd5 6. Bg2 [last book move] Opening Explorer Bc5 7. 0-0 0-0 8. d3 Bb6 9. Bd2 Bg4 10. Rc1 [10. h3 Be6 =] Nxc3 [ ⩱] 11. Bxc3 Re8 12. b4 [12. h3 Bf5 =] Qd6 [12 ... a5 13. bxa5 Bxa5 14. Bxa5 Rxa5 15. Qb3 ⩱] 13. Nd2 Qh6 [Black has a very active position] 14. Nc4 Qh5 [14 ... Nd4 15. Bxd4 exd4 16. Bxb7 Bxe2 17. Qa4 =] 15. Rc2 Rad8 16. Nxb6 cxb6 17. f3 Be6 18. Qd2 b5 [18 ... a6 19. Rcc1 =] 19. f4 Bg4 [19 ... f6!? =] 20. Bxc6 [ ±] bxc6 21. fxe5 f6 22. exf6 Rxe2 23. f7+ Kf8 24. Bxg7+ Kxg7 25. Qc3+ Re5?? [Terrible but the game is lost in any case 25 ... Qe5 26. Rxe2 Qxc3 ±] 26. Qd4 [+-] Qg5 [26 ... Rxd4?? 27. f8=Q+ Kg6 28. Qf6#] 27. Rc5 [27. Rxc6 is impossible Qe3+ 28. Qxe3 Rxe3 ∓] Rxd4 28. f8=Q+ Kg6 29. Qf7+ 1-0.

Game of the Year honors go to former World Champion Viswanathan Anand for this sparkling win over Fabiano Caruana at the Sinquefield Cup. This line is sometimes called the King's English, where 6 ... Nb6 is far more common than 6 ... Bc5. 26. Qd4!! is a beautiful move, then 26 ... Re5 27. Rc5 is a nice cross-pin:


click for larger view

Juniors and students, work out White's winning line at the end. Don't miss the discussion here about Pawn promotion rules.

Some insightful commentary:

<Middlegames with heavy pieces and opposite-color bishops are dangerous, because one player is frequently thinking his attack is mortal and forgets the tragedy his own king may face on the other color squares. Anand masterly traded his g2 bishop for black's Knight while the enemy queen and bishop were in the vicinity of his king. Caruana must have felt that it was too much a risk and therefore White had to be punished. When Anand pushed his pawn with check on the f7 square, Caruana still had a chance to play 23 ... Qxf7! 24. Rxe2 Bxe2 25.Rxf7 Kxf7 26 Rf2+ with a likely draw, or 23. Rxf7 Rxd2 24. Rxd2 Kxf7, again with a probable tablas. But the young didn't see any particular problems with 23 ... Kf8?, and at first sight, White only has problems in this position. Black has mate and queen attacked, how could White save himself, not alone win the game? The answer could only be 24. Bxg7+ and the tragedy on black's dark squares comes before White´s on the light squares. Beautiful game from the ex-world champion!>

<16 ... cxb6 devalues Black's queenside pawn majority. Now Black has more space but White has the bishop pair and a potential pawn majority in the center. On the other hand if Black can make count his greater space, White may be unable to make count his bishop pair or his pawn majority. One reason to think so is that instead of offering a pawn on e5 by 19 ... Bg4 both Anand and Caruana appeared to consider 19 ... Bd5 satisfactory for Black. Caruana's remarks suggested that he had either overlooked something or miscalculated something when he made the pawn sacrifice. GM Seirawan called 26. Qd4!! a beautiful move. The black rook on d8 is overworked. If it has to prevent the coronation of White's f pawn it cannot then take White's queen on d4. Caruana does take the queen a move later but then loses after White crowns the f pawn.>

<The positional laws governing play in the middlegame of chess often look simple and logical. But it takes courage to understand the risks and still go beyond them and create complications and chaos, if one can possess necessary tactical intuition for risk-taking. It is the trademark of tactical geniuses in the history of the game, who were able to create such complications ignoring strict positional laws. However, even in cases where the created complications are unsound in nature, it requires very steady nerves and crystal-clear calculating ability to defend against such attacks and repulse them, defensive abilities which are again not for the faint-hearted. The Sunday game against Caruana was one such encounter where Anand showed nerves of steel and deep calculation in calling his opponent’s bluff. He accepted Caruana’s pawn sacrifice on the 21st move, and went even bolder and accepted the second pawn on the next move, only to find Caruana’s rook land on the crucial seventh rank, threatening Anand’s queen and checkmate in one move at the same time.>

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Best Games of 2017 contest!

Feb-27-19  SpiritedReposte: Impressive from Anand.
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