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Levon Aronian vs Wesley So
Norway Chess (2019) (armageddon), Stavanger NOR, rd 6, Jun-10
English Opening: King's English. Two Knights' Variation Smyslov System (A22)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Jun-11-19  wordfunph: <Sally Simpson> i enjoyed watching So's shocked reaction and without handshake.

gracias amigo :)

Jun-11-19  Pulo y Gata: That's the real So there. Reminds me also of that game with Ivanchuk where he unsportingly pressed his clock at the start of the game with Ivanchuk still not around.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: ***

Hi wordfunph,

Thank You.

I'm sure you have been there as well, (we all have). Do not underestimate the ability of any human to find a way to get checkmated in one move.

You failed to mention the graceful gleeful swoop of Aronian delivering mate and Wes's raised eyebrow. (OOPS!) The moment all chess player's dread captured in a 5 second vid.

I've seen boards thrown, pieces scattered and friendships forged over many years shattered in blitz games.

Wes walking away was perfectly understandable. He cannot complain. It's chess. Caissa smiled on him when Caruana missed a glorious win and now she has balanced the books. She giveth and she taketh away.


Jun-11-19  Viktorerro: Hihihihi, holy cow of a carabow, that 5 secs video clip turns out to be the Joke of the Day. Had a good laugh, just watching it over and over.

Hey Magnus, give us some good, old Norwegian Jokes! Come on, man.

Jun-11-19  bubuli55: After watching the video, Pacman tried to get hold of Aronian to see if he’s interested in getting into the ring with him. Apparently that’s the best Pacman has seen - The Left Hook.
Jun-11-19  bubuli55: GOTD - The Left Hook
Jun-11-19  bubuli55: Aronian is coming out with a new book. How to Throw a Left Hook Punch
Jun-11-19  bubuli55: Aronian was asked why he pressed the clock after the swing. He answered... That’s a mandatory 10 - count.
Jun-11-19  Kapmigs: Easily the best game of the tournament
Jun-11-19  wordfunph: i love the way levon fingered his rook deep inside so's camp.

viva Levon!

Jun-11-19  wordfunph: no wesley so diehard fan here?


Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: An Absolute Pin means it can't move, a Relative Pin means it shouldn't move, and a Terminal Pin is against a mate threat. Here the Ng7 was pinned against the mate threat on h7.

<Wesley, stunned, walks away without the customary handshake> He should work on his sportsmanship.

Go Wesley!

Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: Wesley statement after getting mated:

Jun-11-19  bubuli55: Wesley stretched his right arm that mimics a soft jab before Aronian puts all his weight on that vicious left hook. Reminds me of that 1971 round 15. Ali there puts up a soft right jab and Smokin Joe lets go of a nasty left hook to the chin. Ali turned his head to the left but managed to get up. Here, the sequence is reversed. Wesley got off his seat and up, and then snapped his head to the left.

Who carried a stronger punch? Aronian or Frazier?

Jun-11-19  bubuli55: GOTD -

Smokin’ Joe Aronian


Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: ***

Hi TP.

<"He should work on his sportsmanship.">

There are only two things you can do in a sudden end like that with the adrenalin flowing.

Collapse laughing or walk away. The third alternative would have landed him jail and a bill from the organisers for a new chess set, clock and board.

In a normal OTB game you can see the end coming and prepare yourself.

At least Wes did not fall for the Queen Sac Aronian had plotted on move 33.

Black to play.

click for larger view

If this Armageddon trend filters down into other tournaments we will see a lot more finishes like this.


Jun-11-19  john barleycorn:

Look at 16:20. using both hands in play.

Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: <<Pulo y Gata> So there. Reminds me also of that game with Ivanchuk where he unsportingly pressed his clock at the start of the game with Ivanchuk still not around.>

The FIDE Laws of Chess indicate "6.6 At the time determined for the start of the game White’s clock is started." It doesn't say who should start the clock, but if I remember my playing days correctly Black would start White's clock when it was time to do so, even though the player playing White was not present. Conversely, if White was present he would make his move and start Black's clock, even though Black was not present.

Therefore, if So was playing Black and Ivanchuk was not present, he would either have the right to start Ivanchuk's clock or request an arbiter to start Ivanchuk's clock. And, if So was playing White, he would have the right to start Ivanchuk's clock after he made his first move, even though Ivanchuk was not present.

Therefore I fail to see how So unsportingly pressed his clock at the start of the game even though Ivanchuk was not around, unless he did that before the time that the game was scheduled to start.

Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: <<Sally Simpson> I've seen boards thrown, pieces scattered and friendships forged over many years shattered in blitz games.>

This happened to me once, and it was not a blitz game. It was a team match and the game was the last one to be finished, and my team was down 3-4. All my opponent had to do was draw the game and his team would win the match. Since a draw was as bad as a loss, I started an attack and sacrificed 3 minor pieces, one for each of his k-side pawns to expose his king.

My opponent, which I knew very well was, by mutual consent, better than I was. He also was very egocentric and I knew that he could not stand drawing against a worse player. And definitely not a team player. Further, he spent a lot of time after each of my sacrifices trying to find the best defensive moves. As a result, he was very short of time at the critical stage of the game. And the fact that all the players on both teams were standing by the board did not help his concentration.

Finally, 3 pieces down, I managed to penetrate his position with my queen and checked him. He only had 2 moves with his king and saw that if he moved one way I would be able to get a draw by repetition. There was no way that this egotistical jerk was going to allow a draw against a lesser player even though it would have given his team the match. As a result, being very short on time and without calculating, he moved his king the other way. I mated him 3 moves later.

So he got up, grabbed his king and threw it across the board, knocking down most of the pieces, and stormed away from the table. What could I do? I just sat by the board and smiled, knowing that my underdog team had tied the match.

And some still say that you only should play the board and not the opponent. Hah! Of course, this doesn't apply to computer vs. computer games. ;-)

Premium Chessgames Member
  fredthebear: It's probably a case of anger at one's own play, not at the opponent. A blunder that allows an embarrassing snap mate will do that. FTB has seen stalemate cause a competitor to blow a fuse in such a manner. The sudden end can be overwhelming when one thinks his position is fine, or better.

This finish is an example of (Vladimir) Vukovic's Mate as shown in "The Art of Attack in Chess" on pages 66-67. (Vukovic did not give himself credit, but such has been bestowed upon him.) The pattern can occur with the king anywhere on the back rank, not just the corner.

The Vukovic Mate pattern requires the rook to be protected by the pawn. More often, the Arabian Mate occurs without need of a pawn. The Hook Mate requires the knight to be protected by the pawn. Thus, the pawn's role varies by pattern.

Premium Chessgames Member
  fredthebear: Rook-Knight-Pawn checkmates courtesy of ChessCoachClark...

Vukovic Mates: Game Collection: Vukovic Mate Examples

Arabian Mates: Game Collection: Arabian Mate Examples

Hook Mates: Game Collection: Hook Mate Examples

Thank you ChessCoachClark!!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: ***

Hi AylerKupp,

Can you show the game. No need for names, just the PGN. A three piece sac should be shared. Sounds great fun.

You are right about the clocks. The controller announces 'start white's clock.' and if the player of the White bits is not there then the other player starts the clock.

These days it must be very rare. I know there was an Olympiad rule about you must be in the playing hall 15 minutes before the game starts else risk a default.

In one to one matches it is usually the chief arbiter who starts White's clock.


Premium Chessgames Member
  fredthebear: It's important to know that if the Black player is not present when the round begins, White should start his own clock first and let a few seconds go off to prove that White's clock was started first. ALWAYS start White's clock first for it to be a technically legal game. After a quarter-hour has passed, it's a good idea to alert the TD that your opponent is not present and clarify at what time the match can be called a no-show forfeit.

<Sally Simpson> FTB is not a fan of requiring players to be present in the hall before the game starts. The game should start when the game is supposed to start, by posted round time. Of course, a player certainly needs to be registered and checked in to be paired for the round, but actual presence in the hall is not necessary IMHO. FTB prefers killing time in the lavatory, stuck on the elevator, or breathing fresh air in the parking lot. Old timers have all been to the tournament that demanded players arrive 30 minutes prior to start, and then the tournament starts 30 minutes later than planned, a waste of an hour schmoozing elbow-to-elbow w/opponents about to inflicted with violence.

FTB is quite sociable introducing himself at the board and after the round -- we should make friends w/our competitors in part so they'll keep coming back for more -- but there is a competitive dislike of standing in a crowd for the sake of wasting time. "Hurry up and wait" is not FTB's mantra... "to each his own" is more like it.

Jun-13-19  paladintanks: Aronian should have just declared mate in 1 move thereby So would raise up his arms and probably pick aronian by his collar and kiss him in the lips unbelivable gesture in the 19thcentury alekhine style
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: a lovely strangulation. the black Knight and Rook are both trapped. If either moves, it's mate.

I wonder if black should have tried moving his center pawn mass? it would require attention from white, giving black time to free himself from the prison.

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