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A Recurring Mistake by committed by Super-GMs

Our friend Renier returns with annotations of a recent game. You can see the game here or you can download it with this link.

David Navara – Robert Ris

European Club Cup 14.11.2019

Renier Castellanos

Trust, but verify A common tradition in chess is to copy our colleagues whenever they play a new idea in certain opening. In the recent Chess.com FIDE Grand Swiss we witnessed a funny situation when Alexei Shirov, playing next to Sergey Karjakin decided to follow Karjakin’s novelty in a well-known position of the Sicilian Four Knights. A peculiar situation but not new to me. Few years back I was playing in the Ortisei (Italy) Open when a something similar happened. Nisipeanu played a new (strong idea) in a popular variation and the opponent of a friend of mine started following the Grandmaster’s moves. They were playing very far from the top board but it turns out that there were large screens with the top games in the playing hall. She got up and asked the arbiter to do something about it but it was too late. Something to think about. Back to our main game, the real story behind this comedy is that Karjakin had totally forgotten his game against Yu Yangyi from played in Baku in 2015 and played the wrong move order leading to a lost position. Karjakin managed to get away and win any anyway but Shirov was held to a draw, both were lucky as they could have been severely punished. One would think that this tragicomic incident ends here but it gets better. In the recently finished European Club Ch. David Navara also played Karjakin’s novelty, was he unaware? One thing is certain, his opponent Robert Ris a strong IM and respected theoretician was well informed and ready to serve justice in this line.

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Nxc6 6.Ndb5 is also a move here and black has now the option of playing 6…d6 inviting the Sveshnikov or the more fashionable line: 6…Bc5!? 7.Bf4 0–0 8.Bc7 Qe7 9.Bd6 Bxd6 10.Qxd6 Qd8 surprisingly this is back in tournament practice with not bad results for black at all.

6…bxc6 7.e5 Nd5 8.Ne4 Qc7 9.f4 Qb6 10.c4 Bb4+ 11.Ke2 f5 12.exf6 Nxf6 13.Be3 Qd8 14.Nd6+ Bxd6 15.Qxd6 Bb7 So far we have been following a rather forced line of the Four Knights

16.g4 16.Rd1 Is right and it’s what John Shaw recommends in the book Playing 1.e4 Sicilian Mainlines 16…Rc8 17.g4 c5 18.Rg1 Rf8 19.f5 (19.g5 also looks promising and it’s Shaw’s mainline.) 19…Qb6 20.fxe6 dxe6 21.g5 Nd5 22.Qxb6 Nxb6 23.Ke1 Nd7 24.Be2 Ke7 25.Rd3 Be4 26.Ra3 Rc7 27.Kd2 e5 28.Rf1 Rb8 29.Kc3 Rb6 30.Rd1 Rbc6 31.Bg4 Nb6 32.Ra5 g6 33.b3 Bf5 34.Be2 Nd7 35.a3 Be6 36.h4 Bf7 37.Bf3 Rb6 38.Rxd7+ Kxd7 39.Bxc5 e4 40.Bg4+ 1–0 Karjakin – Yu Yangui, Baku 2015

16…c5! Simple, logical, and strong. Black takes over the initiative

17.Rg1 Ne4 18.Qd3 An improvement over Karjakin’s and Shirov’s 18.Qe5 However, statistically white has better chances with 18.Qe5

18.Qe5 Qh4? (18…0–0! and it’s just game over, the white king will not survive long in the centre. For instance 19.Bg2 d6 20.Qxe6+ Kh8 and black will play either Rf6 or Qb6 followed by Rae8 with winning positions in both cases.) 19.Bg2 Qxg4+ And now the two games diverged.

20.Kd3 Nf2+ 21.Bxf2 Bxg2 22.Bxc5 Rc8 23.Rae1 Kf7 24.Re2 Qf3+ 25.Be3 d6 26.Qd4 e5 27.Qxa7+ Ke6 28.Rgxg2 Rxc4 29.Kxc4 Rc8+ 30.Kb4 Qe4+ 31.Bd4 1–0 Karjakin – Dreev, Douglas 2019

20.Bf3 Nc3+ 21.Kd3 Qxf3 22.Kxc3 Rg8 23.Rg3 Qc6 24.Bxc5 0–0–0 25.Bd6 Ba6 26.b3 Kb7 27.Rd1 Rc8 28.Rxg7 Rxg7 29.Qxg7 Bxc4 30.Kb2 Be2 31.Re1 Qxd6 32.Rxe2 Qd1 33.Qg2+ Rc6 34.a4 Qd4+ 35.Ka2 Qxf4 36.Qg7 Rd6 37.Qxh7 Rd1 38.Qh5 Qd4 39.Rb2 e5 40.h4 Rd2 41.Rxd2 Qxd2+ 42.Ka3 Qc1+ 43.Ka2 Qc2+ 44.Ka3 Qc1+ 1/2–1/2 Shirov – Yu Yangyi, Douglas ENG 2019.

18…Qh4!

18…Qf6 also looks strong

19.Rd1??

A natural blunder. Let’s pay attention to the nature of this move, white threatens to take on d7 with check but the rook on d1 also takes away the square d1 leaving the king stuck on e2.

19.Bg2 is the only way to stay in the game 19…Qxh2! 20.Kd1 Nf2+ 21.Bxf2 Bxg2 with a complex middlegame, I suspect white can survive, but that’s the only thing he can hope for

19…0–0!–+

20.h3 On 20.Qxd7 Anything wins 20…Qxh2+ 21.Ke1 Qh4+ 22.Ke2 Rab8 the attack goes on, …Bd5 is a neat threat.

20.Rg2 d5 also winning for black.

20.Bg2 Rxf4! similar to the game

20…Rxf4 21.Qb3 Rf2+ 22.Bxf2 Qxf2+ 23.Kd3 Qxg1 24.Qxb7 Rf8 A win is a win but black could have finished it off in a glorious, unforgettable way.

24…Qg3+! 25.Kxe4 (25.Kc2 Qh2+ 26.Kd3 Nf2+) 25…Rf8! is mate in three moves Rf4,Rf5,Qe5 no matter what. Deserves a diagram 26.Qxd7 Rf4+ 27.Ke5 Rf5+ 28.Kxe6 Qe5#

25.Qxe4 Rxf1 26.Rxf1 Qxf1+ 27.Kc2 Qxh3 28.Qa8+ Kf7 29.Qxa7 Qg2+ 30.Kb3 Qf3+ 31.Ka4 Qc6+ 32.Ka5 e5 33.Qb8 d6 34.Qd8? 34.Qa7+ apparently was more resistant. Not easy for black after this 34…Kf6! (34…Kg6 35.Qe7 and draw is the most likely result) 35.b4!? cxb4 (35…e4 36.b5) 36.Qf2+ Ke6 37.Kxb4 white is still worse, game goes on

34…h6 35.a3 e4 36.b4 cxb4 37.axb4 e3 38.b5 Qe8 39.Qh4 Qe5 40.Ka6 e2 41.Qe1 Ke7 42.b6 Kd7 43.c5 Kc6 44.Qb1 e1Q 45.Qb5+ Kd5 46.c6+ Ke6 47.Qb3+ Qd5 48.Qc2 Qee4 49.Qxe4+ Qxe4 50.Kb7 Kd5 51.c7 Kc5+ 52.Ka7 Qc6

0–1

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  1. LE BRUIT QUI COURT
    December 1st, 2019 at 18:01 | #1

    Robert Ris wrote recently a month ago “Play the Sicilian Four Knights” for Modern Chess Team. He must be well prepared because of it!

    Jacob, do we have any chance that you publish “Playing the Sicilian Four Knights” book for Black? This variation may be weaker than Najdorf or Sveshnikov, but no one can crack it!

    We, chess amateurs, are welcomed!!!

  2. Jean-Marie Robiolle
    December 6th, 2019 at 06:53 | #2

    Hi Jacob,
    What about the title : “A Matter of Technique” ? Will it be released ? Is it the same as “Excelling at Technical Chess” ?
    Thanks,
    Jean-Marie

  3. Jacob Aagaard
    December 6th, 2019 at 23:38 | #3

    @Jean-Marie Robiolle
    My prediction is that it will come out in July. And no, it has nothing to do with the Excelling book and is less about technique. For that wait for Technical Decision Making in Chess, by Boris Gelfand, also out in July I would predict.

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