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Three Mtel Draws

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Three more tense games in the second round of the Mtel Masters today. All resulted in draws just minutes apart after they reached the first time control. Kamsky's position out of the opening again looked suspect, this time with his favorite 4..Qb6 in the Slav. But he steadily outplayed Nisipeanu to gain an advantage with black. GM Christiansen expected 20.Na4 with pressure for White, but in the post-game press conference Nisipeanu said he thought he'd gone wrong earlier. In the mutual time crunch Kamsky's creative play (29..g5!) came close to inflicting real damage. 33..Bxh4 was the test we were expecting. After 33..Bxd4 things boiled down to a draw quickly. Kamsky was down to 1:18 for move 40.

Topalov had some pressure against Adams in a well-known QID line. He flashed some preparation with the interesting idea of playing e3 to solidify the center and then bringing his queen over to b2. Adams defused things very well with 25..Bc5 taking most of the sting out of the b5-Nc6 plan by White. In the press conference Adams said he looked at a few chances to play for more, but didn't see anything convincing.

Sasikiran played a tranquil set-up against Mamedyarov's 1.d4 g6 and soon looked like he was getting the worse of things. This seemed to be confirmed when Mamedyarov played very aggressively and Sasikiran kept choosing the calmest continuations. 11.Nxe5 would have been the standard shot, for example. But despite the mutilation of his kingside pawns, White always had tricks and chances and Black never managed to get at the white king. Eventually Mamedyarov had no choice but to liquidate into a drawn opposite-colored bishops endgame. A difficult game not at all easy to evaluate. It always looked like Black should have something but he may not have been much better at all.

I had a feeling at several points during the round that at least two of the games would have been drawn fairly quickly without the presence of the no-draw-offer Sofia rules. We got three interesting maneuvering games as a result. So Topalov starts out with two whites and scores 0.5. That's the same score he had after two rounds last year and he ended up winning the event. Tomorrow's round 3: Mamedyarov-Topalov, Adams-Nisipeanu, Kamsky-Sasikiran.



Couldnt resist.

Sometimes, it is very difficult to maintain the advantage after 11.Nxe5. You lose time on that process when you opponent is well prepared on all the inferior lines. I think Sasikiran made a good practical choice and pressed very well i believe.

I am rooting for Sasikiran to knock Kamsky down tomorrow!

Just read the previous post.. Larry is now a broken record.. :)

I meant previous thread..

Great commentary provided by http://tournaments.chessdom.com/mtel-masters-2007/adams-nisipeanu. The dude that analyses has played Adams, http://chessgames.com says it was in Bourgas. So he must really know him well.

Topalov gets smacked tae hell

Nisipeanu gets smacked tae hell too


Someone: Why isn't 24.Rg3 winning for Adams ?

Topalov down.

That was 23. Rg3

Do you think Topa plays til the end of the tournament?
He has the same score as last year but last year he looked better even when losing.

If Topa is on a mission to prove that he is not computer cheating, I think he is overdoing it a bit... lol

Maybe he is on a mission to prove that he is computer cheating? Both ideas seem equally stupid.

The whole Elista thing has done much more to Topalov than to Kramnik - it seems. It's not good to call somebody a cheater only because he is using the toilet frequently.
But I hope Topa comes back into his game. Today he is not playing like he is able to do.

I think we must give credit to mamedyarov - he won todays game Toppy didnt lose it. He is a killer, aggressive and very well prepared. Cant help feeling a bit sorry for Kamsky played accurate chess all the way then just went into a line which turned out to lose. But at the same time cant help feeling his opening choice is a little bit past its sell by date as a winning attempt its had its hey day. Nispeanu really went into the lions den against Adams he has mega experience with this variation and I guess he had most of it at home.Its off thread a bit but check out Karjakan - Grischuk move 63 its just gone into a K R P v K B P ending Karjakan finds the ONLY move to win fairly natural move but still without a Nalimov table base accessible , impossible to know that everything else draws or loses.

Yes. A big celebration time for Shak and Adams. What about Topalov? Nothing new. He´s playing at the level he had before 2005.

He's playing at the level he had before 2005.

Not even that. Topalov's score since the signaling video was released is +1 =11 -5 and the only win was the blunderfest against Morozevich.

Apart from Chess, I also have a statistical interest in this tourney, i.e., to say, how many rating points Topa is going to lose?

Almost a year ago, Topa had commented that he would not play a WC match against Kramnik because Kramnik is only #6 and some 50-60 points below him! It seems that in the next rating Kramnik might actually overtake him.

Caissa's justice!

Some would say that it's because of his cheating. Others might indicate that it's his karma for the above and Elista, while still others would contribute it to poor form. His supporters would rationalize it no matter what? One thing is for sure, at +1 =11 -5, he's not the Topolov all of us thought he was.

ugh, sigh. kamsky has really let me down. i remain a loyal fan and continue to root for him, but my expectations overshot his performance so far by a lot.

jeez, where are all the powerful opening innovations in mainline theory i figured he must have been concocting during his long breaks between tournaments last year??

It looks like all opening novelties are now for use be Cheparinov.
Topalov's performance in Sofia can be result of his temporary mental unreadiness to play. His brain is not tuned for chess at the moment. He told to Vasiliev after the tournament opening that he has no feeling he has to play tomorrow.

Or maybe he is just not handling the accusations of cheating well. Kramnik was also a bit unnerved last year in Elista, but he recovered. I hope Vesselin does too.

But on the other hand, I think we overestimate how strong he was. His dominance was never on Kasparov level. He won San Luis and the two Mtels on home turf, but those were the only tournaments he finished non-shared first. I think the feeling of the more skilled and perceptive reviewers was not so much that Topalov was playing brilliantly during that era--it's that he outplayed, outendured, outprepared and underblundered his opposition.

It will be interesting to see what happens. The big concern for Topalov fans should be that he will feel pressured to perform up to his 2800 performances and will overpush many a game/position.

2nd day post-conference:

Vasilyev: "Did you recover desire to play at your full strength?"
Topalov: "I already feel better. The first day was something terrible..."

Topalov has cracked: He'll probably never regain the form that he had in San Luis. It would have been much better to simply swallow hard and lose the Elista match and then try to recover. But in the back of his mind, he must know that the silly accusations against Kramnik were simply a manifestation of his own weakness. Danailov has lost his powers to be a Svengali, and Topalov has begun to lose confidence in himself.

Topalov has begun to force positions, and overpress in his attempts to win. He chases after lost points with risky play. He plays for complications even when the tactics are not in his favor.

Danailov cannot blame anybody else, or come up with excuses, when Topalov loses in Sofia, under conditions that must be catered to him.

Each new defeat of Topalov only provides more evidence that the accusations Kramnik were bogus.

Not only would it be ironic to see Kramnik (once again) surpass Topalov on the ratings list, it would be a nice thing to see.

Interesting note: MTel website is also conducting a sign-up campaign for "PLAY LIKE TOPALOV". With Topalov's current score, this link looks like taunting him.

Mexico City is the 5th Grand Slam tournament!

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    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on May 11, 2007 7:16 AM.

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