Thursday, January 5, 2012

Morozevich within a point of Nakamura after beating him in Reggio Emilia Rd 8 | The Week in Chess

Morozevich within a point of Nakamura after beating him in Reggio Emilia Rd 8 | The Week in Chess
54th Reggio Emilia 2011 (8)

Morozevich within a point of Nakamura after beating him in Reggio Emilia Rd 8

Alexander Morozevich moved within a point of Hikaru Nakamura with just two rounds to go after defeating him in Round 8 of the 54th Reggio Emilia tournament. Nakamura must have somehow been surprised in the opening because he was very quickly on the edge of defeat after only about 10 moves on the white side of a French, and busted after 15. Anish Giri beat Nikita Vitiugov after getting a huge bind out of the opening in return for the exchange. Once the exchange was returned his remaining initiative was enough for a comfortable win. Vassily Ivanchuk is in desperate shape and tried to get a draw by playing the London System against Fabiano Caruana, however the latter quickly got a big advantage and Ivanchuk gave away all his pieces before resigning for his fourth loss in a row. Distressing to see. Round 9 Thursday 5th Jan 2012 2pm. Nakamura-Giri, Morozevich-Ivanchuk and Caruana-Vitiugov.

Alexander Morozevich defeated Hikkaru Nakamura in Round 8. Photo ©

Alexander Morozevich defeated Hikkaru Nakamura in Round 8. Photo © |

Alexander Mororzevich pulled to within a point of Hikaru Nakamura after defeating him in round 8 of the 10 rounds.

Just one of those days where everything went wrong and my opponent played well. Fortunately, I still have the lead and can sleep it off.

Hikaru Nakamura on Twitter

I find it hard to understand what went wrong for Nakamura. Maybe he simply didn't prepare the variation where Morozevich grabs the b2 pawn in any detail. 10.f5 looks dubious from Nakamura and after 15...Ndxe5 Morozevich must surely have been confident of victory.

Nakamura,Hikaru - Morozevich,Alexander [C11]
54th Reggio Emilia Reggio Emilia ITA (8), 04.01.2012

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.e5 Nfd7 5.f4 c5 6.Nf3 Qb6 7.Be3 Nc6 8.Qd2 Qxb2 9.Rb1 Qa3 10.f5?

Alexander Morozevich


Hikaru Nakamura

Position after 10.f5?

This position already looks better for black to me. Perhaps Nakamura was already out of his preparation.

[10.Bb5 c4 11.f5 Bb4 12.Rxb4 Qxb4 13.0-0 h6 14.Nh4 Nf8 15.Ne4 Qxd2 16.Nd6+ Ke7 17.Bxd2 Nxd4 18.Bb4 Nxb5 19.Nxb5+ Kd8 0-1 Vialaret,L-Couttet,J/Cannes FRA 1995]

10...a6 11.fxe6 fxe6 12.Be2

[12.Ng5 cxd4 13.Nxe6 dxe3 14.Qxe3 Qa5 15.Be2 d4 16.Qg5 Ndxe5 17.Nxg7+ Bxg7 18.Bh5+ Ng6 19.Bxg6+ hxg6 20.Qxg6+ Kd8 21.0-0 Qe5 22.Rf7 Be6 23.Rxg7 Qxh2+ 24.Kf1 Qf4+ 25.Kg1 Qe3+ 26.Kf1 Rh1# 0-1 Puczylowski,M (2070)-Bebel,A (2272)/Karpacz 2010/CBM 135 Extra]

12...Be7 13.0-0 0-0 14.Kh1 cxd4 15.Nxd4 Ndxe5

Alexander Morozevich


Hikaru Nakamura

Position after 15...Ndxe5. Unless swift retribution follows this capture is almost always very good news for black.

Unless there is a specific refutation it is almost always great news when black destroys white's centre in this variation. Here white doesn't seem in a position to exploit the dark squares opened up by the loss of his centre and so must be lost.

16.Rb3 Rxf1+ 17.Bxf1 Qd6 18.Nxc6 Nxc6 19.Na4 b5 20.Nb6 Rb8 21.Bf4 e5 22.Nxc8 Rxc8

Black is two pawns up and white has no compensation whatsoever.

23.Bg3 Qe6 24.Rb1 e4 25.a4 bxa4 26.Bxa6 Rf8 27.c3 a3 28.Be2 Bd6 29.Bh4 Rb8 30.Rxb8+ Bxb8 31.Qa2 Qd6 32.Bg3 Qc5 0-1

Anish Giri beat tail-ender Nikita Vitiugov in a nicely played Sicilian Kan where he obtained a huge bind out of the opening in return for the exchange. The position was miserable for black and eventually Vitiugov decided to return the exchange, probably he chose the wrong moment, because he was extremely passively placed with level material and the loss followed as a matter of course.

Giri,Anish - Vitiugov,Nikita [B41]
54th Reggio Emilia Reggio Emilia ITA (8), 04.01.2012

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6 5.Be2 Nf6 6.Nc3 Bb4 7.e5 Nd5 8.0-0 Nxc3 9.bxc3 Bxc3

[9...Be7 1/2-1/2 Negi,P (2621)-Muzychuk,A (2523)/Wijk aan Zee NED 2010/The Week in Chess 793 (41)]

10.Ba3 Qa5 11.Bd6 Nc6 12.Nxc6 dxc6 13.f4 Bxa1

Black grabs the exchange but white's bind is pretty impressive.

[13...Bb4 14.Qd4 Bxd6 15.exd6 f6 16.c4 c5 17.Qd3 Bd7 18.Bh5+ Kf8 19.f5 exf5 20.Rae1 g6 21.Re7 Bc6 22.Qe3 h6 23.Qe6 1-0 Civric,Z (2206)-Mikavica,D (2034)/Budva MNE 2009/The Week in Chess 749]


Nikita Vitiugov


Anish Giri

Position after 14.Qxa1. White has more than enough for the exchange.

14... Qd2 15.Bd3 Qe3+ 16.Kh1 Bd7 17.Qb2 b5 18.a4 Rc8 19.f5! exf5


20.e6! Qxe6

Returning the exchange to try and break the attack.

[20...Bxe6 21.Qxg7 Kd7 22.Bf4 Rcg8 23.Qc3 and white has more than enough for the exchange.]

21.Qxg7 Qxd6 22.Qxh8+ Qf8 23.Qxh7 Kd8 24.Bxf5 Bxf5 25.Qxf5 Kc7 26.c4

Nikita Vitiugov


Anish Giri

Position after 26.c4

The material is level but black is so passively placed.

26...Kb6 27.Rb1 b4 28.a5+ Kc7 29.c5 Rb8 30.Qe5+ Kc8 31.Qf5+ Kc7 32.Qf4+ Kc8 33.Rxb4 Rxb4 34.Qxb4 Qh6 35.Qc4 Kd8 36.h4 f5 37.Qd4+ Kc8 38.Qc4 Kd8 39.Kh2 Ke7 40.Qd4 Qh5 41.Kh3 Qg6 42.Qe3+ Kd7 43.Qd2+ Ke8 44.Qf4 Qf6 45.Qd6 Qc3+ 46.Kh2 Qxa5

Black is busted but decides to grab material in case white messes up.

47.Qxc6+ Kf7 48.Qd5+ Kf6 49.Qd6+ Kf7 50.Qd7+ Kf6 51.Qc6+ Kf7 52.Qb7+ Kg8 53.Qc8+ Kg7 54.Qxf5

There is nothing to play on for.


Every now and again Vassily Ivanchuk just blows up and can't play chess to a Grandmaster standard. He lost his fourth game in a row, this time with white to Fabiano Caruana. Ivanchuk played the solid London System probably in the desperate hope to limit complications, lost the initiative fairly quickly, and was soon totally busted, then instead of resigning straight away he decided to give most of his material away before resigning. A distress signal if ever I saw one. The end of this tournament can't some soon enough for him I guess. Tomorrow his opponent Morozevich will be extremely keen to get the full point, although Ivanchuk once beat Kasparov after a similar run of defeats so who knows what will happen?

Ivanchuk,Vassily - Caruana,Fabiano [A48]
54th Reggio Emilia Reggio Emilia ITA (8), 04.01.2012

1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.Bf4 Bg7 4.e3 d6 5.h3 0-0 6.Be2

Ivanchuk is clearly hoping to just draw. As transpires later he must have been in a horrible mental state.

6...b6 7.0-0 Bb7 8.c3 Nbd7 9.Bh2 Qe8 10.a4 a6 11.Na3

[11.c4 a5 12.Nc3 Ne4 13.Nb5 Rc8 14.Qc2 e5 15.Rae1 Qe7 1/2-1/2 Burmakin,V (2579)-Banikas,H (2593)/Vrachati GRE 2011/The Week in Chess 877]

11...e5 12.Nc4 Ne4 13.Nfd2 Nxd2 14.Nxd2 Kh8 15.Qc2 f5 16.Rfe1 g5 17.Bd3 Qg6 18.f3 Rae8

Black is already better and has a plan.

19.Rf1 d5 20.a5 c5 21.g4 e4 22.fxe4 dxe4 23.Be2 f4 24.axb6 Qxb6 25.Qb3 Qa7 26.Bb5 cxd4!

Nicely calculated.

27.Bxd7 dxe3 28.Nc4 Rd8 29.Ba4 Rd2

Resignation is in order. Either there is a mistake in the game score or the following confirms Ivanchuk was not in any condition to play today.


Fabiano Caruana


Vassily Ivanchuk

Position after 30.Qxb7. You don't give the Queen up here, you resign.

Giving the queen up in this lost position has no possible upside.

30...Qxb7 31.Rxf4 gxf4 32.Nxd2 exd2 33.Bxf4 Rxf4 34.Bc6 Qb6+ 0-1

54th Reggio Emilia Reggio Emilia (ITA), 27 xii 2011 - 6 i 2012 cat. XX (2744)

1 2 3 4 5 6
1. Nakamura, Hikaru g USA 2758 * * ½ 0 1 . ½ ½ 1 . 1 1 15 2881
2. Morozevich, Alexander g RUS 2762 ½ 1 * * 1 ½ 1 0 0 . 1 . 14 2832
3. Giri, Anish g NED 2714 0 . 0 ½ * * 1 . ½ 1 ½ 1 12 2795
4. Caruana, Fabiano g ITA 2727 ½ ½ 0 1 0 . * * 0 1 1 . 11 2754
5. Ivanchuk, Vassily g UKR 2775 0 . 1 . ½ 0 1 0 * * ½ 0 8 2645
6. Vitiugov, Nikita g RUS 2729 0 0 0 . ½ 0 0 . ½ 1 * * 5 2554
Round 8 (January 4, 2012)
Nakamura, Hikaru - Morozevich, Alexander 0-1 32 C11 French Defence
Giri, Anish - Vitiugov, Nikita 1-0 54 B41 Sicilian Paulsen
Ivanchuk, Vassily - Caruana, Fabiano 0-1 34 A48 King's Indian Defence /c2-c4
54th Reggio Emilia w Reggio Emilia (ITA), 27 xii 2011 - 6 i 2012

1 2 3 4 5 6
1. Guramishvili, Sopiko wg GEO 2374 * * 0 . 1 1 1 1 1 . 1 ½ 19 2419
2. Sharevich, Anna wg BLR 2267 1 . * * 0 ½ ½ . 1 ½ 1 1 15 2344
3. Brunello, Marina wm ITA 2221 0 0 1 ½ * * ½ . ½ 1 1 . 12 2298
4. De Rosa, Mariagrazia wf ITA 2122 0 0 ½ . ½ . * * ½ 0 1 ½ 7 2153
5. Videnova, Iva wg BUL 2297 0 . 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ 1 * * 0 . 6 2064
6. Chierici, Marianna wf ITA 2048 0 ½ 0 0 0 . 0 ½ 1 . * * 5 2062
Round 7 (January 3, 2012)
Guramishvili, Sopiko - De Rosa, Mariagrazia 1-0 42 D20 QGA
Sharevich, Anna - Chierici, Marianna 1-0 42 D89 Gruenfeld Alekhine
Videnova, Iva - Brunello, Marina 0-1 66 B94 Sicilian Najdorf with 6.Bg5
Round 8 (January 4, 2012)
Brunello, Marina - Sharevich, Anna ½-½ 48 B22 Sicilian Alapin
De Rosa, Mariagrazia - Videnova, Iva 0-1 15 B39 Sicilian Maroczy Bind
Chierici, Marianna - Guramishvili, Sopiko ½-½ 63 B22 Sicilian Alapin

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