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Dortmund 09 r7

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Fight or flight in Dortmund today? R7: Bacrot-Kramnik, Naiditsch-Jakovenko, Carlsen-Leko. Jako beat Naiditsch in the first half.

I can come up with a good argument for every single player in the field to desire a quick draw today. A tempo: Having a bad tournament and playing the former WCh; have black and am an artist; having a horrible tournament and want to go home to mommy; have black and my opponent didn't risk; leading the tournament and can now legally drink; have black and had my medula surgically removed.

See how easy top-level chess is? Okay, okay, I'll put my happy face back on. We have had some interesting games and some great lines in the notes. Don't miss the spectacular 38..Rxb3 39.Qg4 Rxb1 40.Qg6, 'winning' in Jakovenko-Carlsen, except for 40..Qf3+!! You may now pick your jaw up off the floor. Jon Speelman is on the mic today, so let's hope for some rook endgames.

Quickie update: We did get an endgame. Wow what an epic and epically flawed struggle in Naiditsch-Jakovenko. Naiditsch had KO chances aplenty but could never put it together. Miracle save from the Russian, but it really shows what horrid form Naiditsch is in. Meanwhile, the short draw bug seemed to catch on in San Sebastian. Nakamura outplayed Svidler on the black side of a Caro-Kann but retreated to take a quick draw and still leads. Non-violence pact between teammates? Several of the other reported results must be wrong (Karpov and Granda are totally lost in the final positions given) so take grains of salt there for now. More later.


Interesting games so far at Dortmund. Looks like they decided to fight today -- Leko, Kramnik, and Jako all have black and the guys on the other side decided to bring the fight to them.

Yes it's not like Jakovenko played the Dragon and Kramnik repeated 6..Bd6, the aggressive move that used to be a favourite of attacking legend Marshall and that Kram beat Naiditsch with a couple of days ago.

Oh never mind.

Easy draw for Lékó -- good for him.

Kramnik turned down a perpetual, hoping for more. It's a complex position (after ..Qxa3) but I guess draw is still the most likely result.

Not sure about Naiditsch-Jakovenko at all...

I recommend Shipov's Russian on-line commentary of Carlsen-Leko. In a fit of rage at the early draw he carried it on until move 55! :)

I think there's probably a pattern here. Dull draws are mildly disappointing for most spectators, but infuriating for commentators who've wasted a couple of hours seriously analysing/discussing them.

Bacrot of course had a way to force drawish simplifications. Kramnik spent some time trying, I assume, to find an alternative to the queen exchange. But now it might end any moment.


Before the start of the Carlsen-Leko game Shipov is mildly upset over the lack of fighting spirit in Dortmund so far, but the draw on move 22 is so shocking and unexpected to him that he continues playing the game on his own for 30 something more moves. Way to go Sergei!

Mig, you're undermining otherwise excellent broadcasts (good mix of analysis and humor) with negative comments. A little criticism is fine, but do you hear commentators in other sports repeatedly complaining about how disappointed they are?

sorry for not reading your post mishanp. i'm an idiot

I think that in Bacrot-Kramnik game the critical line is 19.Kh1 because of 19...Qb2 is bad: 20.Qf4 f6 and now 21.e6!. I have lost one correspondence game with this way: 21...Qc3 22.Qd6 Nb3 23.Qd7 f5 24.e7 Nc5 (24...Qe5 25.ef8Q Rf8 26.Bf8 Kf8 27.Qb7 is also hopeless) 25.ef8Q Rf8 26.Qe7 Qf6 27.Qc5+-.

Just tuned in again to Dortmund. Naiditsch just played 47.b4. Looks like he's giving Jako some real headaches.

And Naiditsch wins! Congrats.

Um, sorry. Somebody said Jakovenko had resigned. I'm the idiot.

Mig: "Don't miss the spectacular 38..Rxb3 39.Qg4 Rxb1 40.Qg6, 'winning' in Jakovenko-Carlsen, except for 40..Qf3+!!"

It sounded like this line must be really good from the double exclams, but I analyzed this line with Fritz and it's not going anywhere good for Black. Jaw back from floor assumes disappointed grimace.

Naiditsch may have a horrible tournament, but he is a big fighter.

This is off-topic, and I apologize Mig, but...

In some comment here a few months ago, someone mentioned a website to which you could upload PGN, and the website would produce replayable Javascript (maybe?). Can someone mention that here again?

On-topic: Naiditsch blew it today, unfortunately, for him. Jakovenko made the endgame tough for him.

I agree ... . Naiditsch's result in Poikovsky was, at least for a non-German audience, somewhat in the shadow of the 'erratic' performances by Motylev (winner) and Shirov (tailender); still it's worthwhile mentioning: He started with 3.5/5, then lost his last four games and had a single draw in nine rounds.
Maybe a question of nerves and/or extra pressure after he finally reached 2700? Or maybe (the future will tell) he isn't quite THAT strong after all?

I think Svidler just wants to watch the cricket. Three games: 24 moves twice, 22 moves in the other. Hard few days' work.

Facinating report proving women play chess as well as men... when they don't know they are playing a man!


what's the point of ...Qf3+ ?

Anon 10:22--Great! If I don't tell my sister that Smallville is male, she should be able to beat him.

"what's the point of ...Qf3+ ?"

The point of the double exclam ...Qf3+!! is that its the saving move for black. If not for this, black is lost. After ...Qf3+ Bxf3 Rxf1 Kxf1 Rxf3 attacking f2. The rook and bishop will now easily draw against the queen.

No word from the scene, but all the GMs seem to agree there was no way either player saw ..Qf3!! during the game, understandably enough. Carlsen still might have backed off from taking the rook, of course.

Kramnik plays a really boring game today ... . All those sacrifices, yawn ...

Kramnik wins. Wow, what a trouncing! A'm really glad Vlad returned to playing real chess instead of relying solely on his technical skills. Now, if he only supplemented Petroff with something more sharp and complex...

Kramnik just torched Carlsen!

But this boring chess was good enough to take over the tournament lead, so who am I to complain??

Nice one, Vlad. And interesting stuff from everyone else too. Clearly they were reading the Dirt, looked at the man in the mirror, and asked him to change his ways.

Argh, after days of dullness they finally have interesting chess in Dortmund and then they blow their live transmission. I guess the organizers have some homework to do for 2010.

Yeah it's a great round. Jakovenko is playing a great game not sure if it's winning.

Kramnik takes revenge for last years Corus. Good one.

As Jakovenko won his endgame on move 81, we can look at the tournament from the sunny side: As the field is rather balanced (read: there were many draws), four players still have chances for first place with two rounds to go.
Jakovenko still faces his direct competitors Kramnik (tomorrow) and Leko (Sunday) - will he regret 'losing' (conceding) half a point against Vlad in their first game? On the other hand, he had a narrow and lucky escape against Naiditsch.
Carlsen has, in theory, the easiest opponents (tailenders Bacrot and Naiditsch), but depends on the other results.
This could turn into an exciting finish - and if so, I dare to predict _this_ will be remembered in the long run, not the many short (but in most cases not premature) draws ... .

"Now, if he only supplemented Petroff with something more sharp and complex..."

He's only played the Petroff twice in Dortmund. The first time he demolished Naiditsch in 27 moves, and the second time involved a sharp tactical exchange with Bacrot.

"He's only played the Petroff twice in Dortmund. The first time he demolished Naiditsch in 27 moves"

It worked against a Naiditsch not playing his best game, but it was only his second win with the Petroff in a dozen years, so in the past it hasn't been a sharp weapon considering how often he has played it.

Yes, that's a fair point. I still think it's not necessary the opening that's the problem, but whether he chooses to keep fighting for an advantage after equalising. If he does that I think he'll pick up extra half points here and there. I know he's tried to become more aggressive with black in the past (playing the Sicilian etc.), but it generally hasn't gone too well. I think the approach used by Topalov and to an extent Anand is perhaps the best - to go for complex but "dubious" positions (which won't occur to the white player), which you've analysed in such detail at home that white is at a large disadvantage trying to solve the problems at the board. But I don't think Kramnik could bring himself to play "junk" moves, even if it gave him a sporting edge.

On the other hand a super-solid black repertoire certainly has its virtues. Despite the lack of wins Kramnik's performance level with black is still (surprisingly) up there with the best: http://members.aon.at/sfischl/black.txt
He's lost more games recently, but when he was losing none with black he was almost unbeatable in matches and still had a decent chance in tournaments that could be won with +2 (his +4 at the Tal Memorial was something of an exception, needing a phenomenal display with white). But obviously it made it hard to win the more open tournaments where someone's almost bound to reach +4 after beating up the tail-enders with black.

Of course today he's gone and played the Petroff again :) And Jakovenko's chosen the move (19. Kh1) that someone recommended on here instead of Bacrot's 19. Rf2.

Do high-level rapid games also count? Kramnik beat Guseinov and Gashimov with the Petroff in Azerbaijan vs. the World earlier this year.

And within the Petroff, he now goes for a more "sharp and complex" line. Today against Jakovenko, whatever the objective assessment of the position is, 19.Kh1 apparently didn't surprise him as he still spent only 15 minutes on the clock at move 23.

Playing a different line in the Petroff is, at least to some extent, comparable to the many different options black has in the Sicilian - it does make a difference whether you play the Najdorf, Paulsen, Scheveningen, Sveshnikov or Dragon ... . Of course such details are irrelevant to people who automatically say or write "Petroff - booooo".

Yes, today's another example of the potential for fun in the Petroff. If Kramnik finds the calm computer move 24...Rfc8 black's apparently on top. It's actually fairly logical - avoiding losing the exchange and defending the queen on c7, but given white's attack on the kingside it looks odd to move all the defenders to the queenside - and white retains mating chances with the bishop and queen (plus the e6 pawn makes the defence difficult). Some echoes of yesterday's game with the roles reversed!

I really like what Jako is doing , although computer shows black is better .
I only hope this is not a draw , any other result would be great for the tournament and to this petroff.

Now just Rybka's 27.cxd5 Qe7! 28.Qe5 Rаd8! and Jakovenko will have to struggle on with another painful ending (though he should apparently be able to defend).

Once again: Why is a draw by definition a 'bad' result? If Jakovenko-Kramnik somehow ends with a draw (e.g. by perpetual check), the game is still exciting and, probably, relevant for opening theory.
And it wouldn't affect the tension in the tournament - most likely still four players in contention for first place before the last round. In this respect, a win by Kramnik might be 'worse' - particularly if Carlsen and Leko don't win today. Then Kramnik would be sure at least of shared first - of course he would deserve it, consecutively beating two of his direct competitors.

Once again , talk to the hand Thomas.

Bacrot-Leko: I suppose there's lots of perfectly good reasons not to play on. All very rational. So, a correct end to a great game between two of chess's leading players, let's hope we see more of same.

Just ignore Manu. The game, meanwhile, is fascinating. It could go either way now with Jakovenko's f & h pawns ready to cause chaos on the kingside. Kramnik needs to somehow give back the exchange and stall the attack.

The position is dead drawn because one pair of pawns has been exchanged. The only question is: As this happened on the 4th move, why did they make another 13 redundant and meaningless moves?

From the Urban Dictionary, the top two definitions of "Talk to the Hand:"

1) A saying used to ignore and disregard a comment or an insult when you can't think of a way to counter it....Another variation is "talk to the hand 'cause the face don't give a damn'." I really did not know that people still said this.
Misty: Kylee, you a nasty, ugly, stupid.
Kylee: Talk to the hand.

2) Phrase used in combination with a hand gesture intended to convey the message: "I am enjoying my ignorance. Please do not ruin it by discussing facts or logic with me." Used primarily by low-brow talk show guests and other adults who read at a third grade level.

I will give Manu the benefit of doubt because he is not a native speaker (but beyond that, I won't bother replying to a comment devoid of content).

As mishanp pointed out: the game Jakovenko-Kramnik is still fascinating. Where, if at any point, did Kramnik go wrong "sensu Rybka"? Or was Jako's 27.Re1 stronger (at least from a practical pooint of view) than the apparent computer suggestion 27.cd5: ?

In any case, Kramnik (as quoted by the tournament website yesterday) had a point: "I just think from game to game. My black game against Jakovenko on Saturday will be difficult. I must not show any weakness then if I want to win the tournament."

Rybka preferred the slightly odd Rac8 to b5. Fun all round on move 33. Jakovenko could apparently force perpetual check starting with the inhuman Khg1. Instead he played Re3, leaving the back rank unprotected and giving Kramnik Rd7 to win the game. But he instantly, it seems, played b4. That looks ok and Jakovenko's in time trouble, but three results still possible.

Thomas & greg , listen to mishamp.

Someone tell Kramnik to slow down, please :) Blunders all round, but only Jakovenko's in time trouble.

Why does Kramnik keep playing this ultra-boring opening? WHY? (Btw, how do you miss 33..Rd7 -+ with 50-55 minutes on the clock? Yes, you have to see that you still win after 34.exd7 Rxe5 35.Rxe5 Qxf6+ 36.Re8+ Kf7 37.h3 c3, but what's there other than that?)

Was 33.-Rd7 really winning for black? What about 34. ed7: Re5: 35. Re5: Qf6: 36. Re8+ Kg7 and now simply 37.h3 (a slow move, but white seems to have time for it)? What am I missing? Even if there is a win for black, it's understandable that Kramnik didn't go into this line.

37.h3 c3 38.d8=Q Qxd8 39.Rxd8 c2. Jakovenko was in time trouble, but Kramnik had plenty of time. He should definitely have seen that.

It's one of those things he'd have seen if he was looking for it - and if he'd found it he'd no doubt have calculated that it works (he had time). But he was playing for Jakovenko's time trouble and clearly planned the "strategic" pawn moves in advance. He also blundered on move 36 playing c3 instead of b3, which allowed 38. Rd3 and an amazing draw. But Jakovenko has a minute or so left and 38 Qc5 was a blunder. Kramnik's back on top again...

Korotylev is a big fan of Jakovenko's play between moves 24-32, comparing it to the best of Tal or Shirov.

People, stop your engines! To you, every computer line is "obvious", and every move that deviates from it a "blunder". You're missing out on the fun.

Nah, it's great fun/amazing tension to know almost instantly when there's a winning/losing move! (I was watching on Chesspro and someone mentioned that Re3 would be a "blunder" a while before it was played). I agree they're not blunders as such, though. Some of the lines just from this game have been fantastic. Add yesterday & Kramnik's probably done enough to redeem Dortmund :)

The game's a very long way from over, as well.

Kramnik might just force the draw now (Qf1+ Qf4+) seeing that it virtually guarantees him at least shared first. Of course he can try to win but it's tough and there is a potential for blundering as long as the queens are on.

Jakovenko's attack had become static. To stay in the game, he had to stop Kramnik's queenside pawns and collect some of them, maybe giving up his e pawn in the process. Maybe he could reach an equal endgame, maybe even a better one. There were several ways to go about it, Qc5 was one of them. It defuses the c3 pawn and threatens to take on c6. Having little time he couldn't calculate everything but had to go with his gut feeling. Now please tell me: Why do you think, it was a blunder?

As I said, I don't really consider it a blunder (or Kramnik's ...c3 before that). I should have used quotation marks or different phrasing, but I was typing quickly. It was only a mistake in the sense that objectively he had a better move, but one that only Tal or perhaps Kasparov might have seen in time.

Kudos for Kramnik for still going for it with Qb5, though it looks a bit dicey!

Peaceful as he is, Kramnik decided to play on. But maybe a draw would even be the 'correct' result for this game, neither player deserves losing it!?
As far as 'blunder' is concerned, maybe the word has different meanings to different people (chess cultures?). For me, it only means 'a horrible move' (losing a piece or overlooking a forced mate). But for some other people it might mean "anything else than the first (or maybe second) line of Rybka. Then most if not all GM games are full of blunders [excluding short draws], not even talking about ordinary amateurs ... .

I think 33.Re3 and 33..b4 both are "horrible" enough to qualify as blunders. Other than that, I'd be surprised if there have been any blunders by the standards I am used to.

I suspect Rybka will change its mind regarding Kramnik's 36..c3 and the supposed "best" move 36..b3 if given enough time.

Does anybody else know why we're not having this conversation in the rd9 thread? :)

Its Kramnik's fault for choosing to draw with the Petroff :) Which seems to have worked, about now...

Maybe people are to shy to post the first comment in a new thread, even if Mig had intentionally created it for that purpose?
But seriously, as mishanp pointed out, the whole thing started as a general (and eternal) discussion about the Petroff and one of his primary proponents ... .
I have one more question on the game: Why did Kramnik rush to get the queens off on move 43, rather than first recapturing 43. - ab4:? Again, I may be missing something, or Kramnik missed something [obviously, a priori the first is much more likely ,:)].

My idea is 44.Qd6. On the move before, it wouldn't have worked because of 43..Qb8! and the pawns will win against the rook after queen exchange, e8=Q+ etc. But after 43.axb4 axb4 44.Qd6, I think the same thing would eventually have come to an endgame with king, rook and g- and h-pawns against king, queen and g-pawn. Now many people, particularly Russians, should immediately be able to tell the correct result of the game :) My own guess is a draw. Without Black's pawn and White's h-pawn that is a well-known fortress. I don't know if adding those pawns changes matters because the only thing Black can do with the g-pawn is to allow it to be exchanged for White's h-pawn anyway. But the pawn on h3 does take away that square for the rook, so perhaps Black can still create some kind of zugzwang there?

Actually, there might be other differences too. I took a look at a game the side with the queen won, and noted that at some occasion that White could not allow Qxf3! since gxf3 Kxh3 wins the pawn endgame. That is, White's king on h1, rook on f3, pawns on h3 and g2; Black's king on h4, queen somewhere, pawn on g5: ..Qxf3 -+. And if you can't play Rf3 you might not be able to hold the position.

In the game, the player with the rook panicked. But I think that just Kg1 might have worked. Then with the king on g1 Rf3 is always possible. (Actually the player with the rook was Black and the pieces were on the queenside. #227 at http://www.63plus1.cz/chessviewer/2liga0809.htm , thanks to Mameluk for pointing me to it.) In fact I don't know if there is any reason ever to go to h1 (a8) with the king? I now think that endgame is indeed drawn, and that Kramnik and Jakovenko were both aware of it. But it's a nice little thing to try to figure out.

Great game Nakamura ,i play 1.e4 and always considered the Scandinavian defense to be over defiant , i love to see it crushed .

I just wanted to ask that question ... what if white keeps the king on g1? This has clear implications for opening theory, the Petroff is a drawish opening after all ,:).

Now "all Kramnik has to do" to be sure of clear 1st is beat Naiditsch tomorrow - which gives me personally a bit of mixed feelings as I like both players. But in any case we may have another exciting round - without non-games as today's Bacrot-Leko (unless Kramnik decides that shared first is good enough and goes for a quick draw).

Exactly, as far as I can tell he shouldn't have to move to h1 at all. If checked, move it to h2. If checked from there, move back to g1. This way ..Qxf3 will never work anywhere. Must be the key.

Kramnik won't go for a quick draw tomorrow, I'm sure -- unless the other games also quickly go his way. I'm pretty sure though he won't play anything nearly as risky and double-edged as today, for instance, either.

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    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on July 9, 2009 8:51 AM.

    San Sebastián 09 r2: Nakamura Leads was the previous entry in this blog.

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