Greengard's ChessNinja.com

Kamsky and Leko Win Again

| Permalink | 29 comments

Also known as "Candidates 07 R1 Day 3". The official site is getting up to speed (today's results today), but now they tease us with "photos by Casto Abundo" without showing any photos! I imagine they are the same 'Grandma's home video" style ones by Mr. Abundo up at ChessBase. I'm sure there are at least a few professional photogs there with decent equipment, no?

Let's get to the chess, shall we? We are getting one additional decisive game per day, so round six should be a massacre. Probably not. The headline news of the day was 16-year-old Norwegian Magnus Carlsen passing another test and beating top seed Levon Aronian to equalize their match. Carlsen took a slight plus and found a very nice endgame idea to win. Carlsen decided not to repeat his game 1 attempt at outplaying his opponent in the most strategically sophisticated of openings and instead went for an English. Aronian started tempting fate early with 14..Bf6 and got a tricky endgame for his efforts. (White might have played more sharply with 19.Qf4.) Aronian also criticized his cute 24..Rc3, which is silly unless 25.Rac1 Nxe4!? works, something he wasn't convinced of enough to play. That still looks a lot better than the rook endgame he got with his king pushed up against the wall to be strip searched by the white pawns. 40.g5! was the final killer. A tremendous game by Carlsen, who goes into the off day with happy thoughts.

America's Kamsky won for the second day in a row against Frenchman Bacrot. Time was again a factor, as Bacrot was down under ten minutes when Kamsky started racing his pawns up the board. Somehow they looked like they were on fast-forward. Bacrot failed to find the stop button with 32..Rc4 and soon resigned when faced with the loss of a piece to the c7 pawn, which just a dozen moves earlier had been a lowly soldier on b2. 33.d6! is the nice shot Black walked right into. Nobody really knew what to expect from Kamsky, who flashed hot and cold at the Mtel right before this match. His openings are as offbeat as you might expect, following his plan to just get to a playable middlegame and win on his inarguable surplus of talent and grit. Today's 9.c3?! is suspect and White can't really be hoping for much after the logical 9..d5, even if a baby Bobby Fischer played it in 1958. Kamsky managed to cause Black problems anyway, especially when Bacrot sank into deep thought repeatedly. I wasn't aware he was such an impractical player, or maybe he's just having a nervous spell. When you spend 20 minutes on 13..Qd7 vs 13..Qg6, something ain't right. So at the halfway point it's Brooklyn 2.5, France 0.5!

A trivia item for Bacrot's time loss in the second game. Several people have reported that Bacrot's flag actually fell on move 37 but they were moving so fast they got in a few more moves before the arbiter could stop them. Shouldn't the official gamescore reflect that? Just because the sensory board put out a few extra moves to the world, if the arbiter called it after 37..Bd5 shouldn't the score end there? Just askin'.

Leko was the other player to win for the second time and take a commanding lead. He again made it look easy outplaying Gurevich. As experienced as Gurevich is -- he's a former top-tenner and former Kasparov second among other things -- the 48-year-old veteran is looking outclassed and hasn't been able to prevent Leko from getting Leko-friendly positions. The Hungarian smoothly transitioned to an easily winning endgame, leaving Black no chances.

Ponomariov and Rublevsky needed every minute of the time control and then some before the 2005 Russian champion chalked up the win with black. As they got through the first time control it looked like things were going to settle into a repetition draw in a queen and pawn endgame. But the ever-combative Ponomariov miscalculated badly with 49.Qb6 instead of holding tight. Rublevsky's queen ran wild after that. White's last best chance at defense was 68.Ke1 instead of giving up so many pawns. By that time they were into the last time control, which has a 30 second increment. Barney Rublevsky goes for the upset! I think this is my favorite time control, forcing the players to manage time appropriately but letting them conclude a decent endgame. Having an increment from move one distorts things too much; you should be punished for time mismanagement.

For the third day in a row, and despite having the white pieces, Polgar was again neutralized easily by Bareev, who holds the lead in their match. They played a sharp line of the Panov-Botvinnik that Bareev lost in to Grischuk a few years back. 12..Bxf3 was played then and analyzed by Grischuk in NIC 2005/1 according to acirce kibitzing on the ICC. As was the 12..Be6 Bareev played here instead. Both sides played accurately to a drawn rook endgame that still required precision from both. Polgar even had a nominal advantage at the end, but it had been a clear draw for a while by that point. As Susan Polgar and Jon Speelman both opined, 39.Kd5 was White's best chance to play for more.

Shirov had some some shiny new preparation in the same Lopez line he and Adams contested yesterday with colors reversed. His 14..g5 must have been extensively analyzed as he played it almost instantly, allowing a very dangerous-looking piece sac that Adams went for with 15.e5 after a long think. GM Joel Benjamin saw the perpetual check draw coming miles away and White couldn't find anything better. Malakhov solved his opening problems well against Grischuk but is still a point down.

Thanks to Misha Savinov for posting in the round 2 thread about the players' seconds:

Ponomariov: Mikhail Golubev and Yury Kruppa
Rublevsky: Maxim Sorokin
Leko: Arshak Petrosian
Gurevich: Alex Chernin and Mikhail Brodsky. They are all from Kharkov, you know.
Gelfand: Pavel Eljanov and Alex Huzman
Kasimdzhanov: Said Ali Iuldashev
Grischuk: (take a deep breath) Andrey Schekachev and Dmitry Jakovenko
Malakhov: Alexey Dreev.
Polgar: Jussupov and Goloschapov (the latter is here but I am not sure if he is with Judy)
Bareev: Ernesto Inarkiev
Adams: none, of course.

Nigel Freeman adds that Daniel Fridman is also with Kasimjanov. Carlsen has Norwegian GM Lie. Ganguly and Nisipeanu are reported for Shirov. (The Indian was his second at the Tal Memorial, too.) We believe Bacrot and Kamsky are both there unassisted. Aronian (Sargissian?). Cool to see my old Buenos Aires buddy Maxi Sorokin in the news. He and I moved to Argentina at almost the same time and hung out at the Club Argentino a lot before he moved back to Russia not long before I left too.



Go Magnus!


Bacrot and Kamsky are both there unassisted. Bacrot was asked why, and he said "Kamsky doesn't have one either." Are there enough Nathan's in Brooklyn for the wins to come? Hope so.


1) A new disclaimer at The Daily Dirt reads, "All comments are posted automatically and belong to the poster. At no time, unless the law requires such disclosure, disclosure is necessary to aid law enforcement, or a user specifically authorizes such disclosure, will ChessNinja.com disclose individual user personal information that is not publicly available to unrelated third parties."

2) The disclaimer coincides with the removal of various posts that were derogatory to Monroi, though they were just statements of fact pertaining to Monroi's worthless product -- worthless in everything but the price, that is.

3) Censoring ideas, especially when they reflect the truth, will have a negative effect at The Dirt. Chess players, except perhaps Susan Polgar, will no doubt get bored at constantly agreeing with themselves (by deleting all opposing comments) and leave.

4) Miguelito/Miki/Mig: Explain why some posts were removed while others remained. Are you being threatened with police action, as your disclaimer seems to imply?



Bacrot and Kamsky are both there unassisted. Bacrot was asked why, and he said "Kamsky doesn't have one either." Are there enough Nathan's in Brooklyn for the wins to come? Hope so.

I'm actually in the middle of writing a post on that very topic, CA.

Thanks, Mig.

Very nice to see FIDE moving in the right direction. There have been some glitches in this cycle, but six-game candidates matches, a reasonable time-control, and the spiffy horse-head logo (who designed it?!) are big improvements.

On the other hand, Auditor, disclosing people's identities for no other purpose than to expose or bash them is not such a great thing, especially if there is no warning about false expectations of privacy. I'm not insinuating this was case with the MonRoi stuff, clearly it wasn't, but it has been on at least one occasion. Some regular posters on this site get a little too worked up and annoyed when others posting under aliases argue against them, as if posting your name along with your argument magically makes it more credible.

1.- What? Gelfand and Kasim play a very exciting game, and it does not deserve a single word... Not even a coment on the result :)

2.- About time control we could discuss a lot. In my opinion, the increment is good at every stage; I do not see why it is "exciting" having to play 10 moves in one minute in a complex middlegame (usually making a blunder or two), but not in the endgame. It is mostly inertia: We are used to see blunders in time scramble around move 40, but not in the endgame.

In the table at the official site there is many mistakes. A game ended 0-0 and many ELOs are wrong.

Oops, forgot the Kasim game. I made notes but just forgot it in the post. Will add later.

Posting anonymously doesn't make you more or less correct, but there are legal issues. You ARE more credible if you are identifying yourself and can be confirmed as someone with that factual knowledge (or who might have it). That can refute claims that you are simply trying to slander someone. Posting "Dave is a thief and I know it" anonymously, as opposed to as someone who knows Dave, makes a big difference.

As for the Dirt, I consider posting under multiple aliases as abuse, at least when done in the context of a single conversation. I wouldn't expose someone's real name even if I knew it, but standardizing identification of abusers is just combating abuse in my eyes.

Kamsky will get through, so he can ruin Anand's party in Mexico.

Kamsky ruining Anand's party ??

Wasn't he the same guy Anand crushed in match play? ( twice actually ), the first one Kamsky didnt win on classical controls.

Anand is gonna eat Kamsky alive if they ever faced each other :)

Actually, Kamsky won their first match. But of course I agree, that Anand is stronger although he lost in Corus against Kamsky last year.

A pitty to see Bacrot, such a talented young man, kind of waste his potential (to balance that, well, he's still a world champion candidate and a top player...)

Poker seems to be the problem. From informations we get in France and Switzerland, more and more top chess players (and amateurs) turn to poker - it's very fashionable these days (Relange, Stripchenko, Bacrot and many others). Same thing happens to top bridge players.

As a commentator posted it somewere a couple of days ago, "Kaissa is a godess that does not accept time-sharing" !

Bacrot's flag actually fell on move 37 but they were moving so fast they got in a few more moves before the arbiter could stop them. Shouldn't the official gamescore reflect that?

The rules say: 6.9
A flag is considered to have fallen when the arbiter observes the fact or when either player has made a valid claim to that effect.

So if the player's don't claim it seems to be up to the arbiter to state when he observed it, and determine when the game ends.

Luc - it's kind of scary to see, especially with Grischuk and Bacrot, two of the top 20 players in the world (probably top 10 talent when they apply themselves). To be at that incredibly high level, and they still apparently find poker more lucrative..

Luc - it's kind of scary to see, especially with Grischuk and Bacrot, two of the top 20 players in the world (probably top 10 talent when they apply themselves). To be at that incredibly high level, and they still apparently find poker more lucrative..

Poker vs. Chess:

Chess takes far more work to maintain your skill at top levels than Poker does in my mind. That may be the main problem - some of these players don't enjoy the hard work it takes to maintain a top performance level and subsequently turn to poker. Poker is certainly easier than chess to play and relatively easier to master as well.

My 2c.

I've seen mediocre poker players rake in hundreds of thousands of dollars with a little luck. To make those bucks in chess you'd have to play WC-finals or win one of the majors.

Yes, but those hundreds of thousands, and even more, will be lost the next day.
The appeal of (online) poker to my GM friends is that it can be played at night, and no more physical activity is required than the clicking of a mouse button.

Why in particular is "Adams: none, of course" the case? Why does he never have a second?

I don't blame Bacrot and Grischuk for wanting to make a Buck (or a Euro, a Ruble, whatever). However, there is something a bit tawdry about resorting to Poker, which in many ways is the antithesis of chess. As Spassky said it: "Chess is a difficult game". Poker, on the other hand, is an easy game--easy to win at, and easier to lose. Poker probably erodes the fighting spirit, which is needed for tough games. Likewise, the work ethic must suffer, since Poker has no opening preparation, and relatively little preparation for particular opponents.

Aronian's seconds are Vladimir Potkin and Gabriel Sargissian. Of course, Caoilli is with him , too.

Why does Adams never have a second? I'd be interested to know myself, but a few guesses:

.He's used to working on his own - Western players didn't usually have seconds until fairly recently (and Soviet players had ones who were mainly there for "non-chess" reasons)
.He doesn't like having to rely on other people.
.He thinks his own ideas work better, for him, than the ones other people would give him.
.He thinks that an active player would have divided loyalties.
.He's worried that a second might not be trustworthy. Given the history of seconds in English chess, there are grounds for this suspicion - e.g Korchnoi's allegations about Keene, or Short's about Kavalek.

It's surprising, though, if he really has no-one at all to bounce ideas off, as it must be hard to maintain objectivity.

Has anyone ever done a study on how different players chose and work with their seconds? If it hasn't already been done, and Mig can spare the time from fighting off the attack-lawyers, it would be interesting to know how Kasparov approached this.

He has had seconds before though, Emms and Wells. Now his wife keeps him company.

"It's surprising, though, if he really has no-one at all to bounce ideas off, as it must be hard to maintain objectivity." - Well, Adams bounces idea off Rybka, apparently. That is not so bad and probably objectivity doesn't suffer that much.

Monroi sucks. I'd never buy their crap and have already talked 2 people out of doing so. Where do these petty frogs with a shoddy product get off telling us Americans what to say and what to delete.

The thing is, nobody really knows who he 'bounces ideas off'. I know that he at least used to be good friend with Julian Hodgson... he had training from Speelman when he was younger. Maybe he still bounces some ideas off them, and plays some blitz with Norwood.

With most English GMs though, I don't think there would be much benefit in 'bouncing'. He's in a different class.

Twitter Updates

    Follow me on Twitter



    About this Entry

    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on May 29, 2007 5:30 PM.

    Candidates 07 R1 Day 2 was the previous entry in this blog.

    MonRoi and I, and You is the next entry in this blog.

    Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.