The Winner Is Determined

Время публикации: 05.09.2014 13:03 | Последнее обновление: 05.09.2014 18:14

Caruana drew Carlsen to assure first place at Sinquefield Cup

The much awaited clash of Round 8 between Carlsen and Caruana brought answers to major questions. The draw stopped the series of wins for the Italian but assured Caruana first place at the Sinquefield Cup two round to go! None of the rivals operated ideally in the game, however, only Caruana with White pieces claimed for a win throught the encounter.   

Sivcilian defense
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 g6 5.c4 The Maroczy bind. 5...Nf6 6.Nc3 d6 7.f3 Nxd4 8.Qxd4 Bg7 9.Be3 0–0 10.Qd2 a5?! 11.b3! According to the experts' (including Kasparov) comments that can be found in the Internet this is the move that refutes Black's 10th move. 11...a4 12.b4! Be6 13.Rc1

13...Nd7 GM Dreev who commentated on the game live on Chess-News mentioned the following line 13...Rc8!? 14.Nxa4 Nd7 15.Be2 b5 16.cxb5 Rxc1+ 17.Qxc1 Qa8 18.Qd1 Bxa2 19.0–0 - Black's try brings no equility. 14.Be2 Nb6 / 14...Rc8 15.Nxa4!? leads to the position from the previous note.

15.Nb5!? Caruana of course saw he could play 15.Nd5, but he preferred less popular line. The choice here mostly depends on personal preferances - in both cases White's chances are higher. 15...a3 / the line that offers itself - 15...Rc8 16.Na3 f5 17.exf5!. 16.Nd4 In case of 16.0–0 Bb2 with 17.Rc2 Rc8 idea, White can't defend  с4-pawn without sacrificing the exchange. 16...Bd7 17.h4!? Dreev preferred a simple 17.0–0.

17...h5?! According to Dreev here Black had to play 17...e5! with still a better position for white but a complex and tense play. For instance, 18.Nb5!? (the alternative - 18.Nb3 Be6 19.h5 Na4 20.hxg6 fxg6!?, Dreev) 18...Bxb5 19.cxb5 d5! 20.h5 d4 21.Bh6 Bxh6!? 22.Qxh6 g5! 23.Rc7! Qxc7 (noteworthy is 23...Re8 24.Qxb6 Re7 25.Rxb7 Qc8! the idea is to go with a perpetual check in case of 26.Rxe7 Qc3+) 24.Qxg5+ Kh8 25.Qf6+ Kg8 (Dreev) 26.Rh4!? Rfd8! 27.Rg4+ Kf8 28.h6 Ke8, and White only has a perpetual check: 29.Rg8+ Kd7 30.Qf5+. 18.g4!

18...hxg4 19.fxg4 Unclear is 19.h5 e5 20.Nb3 gxf3 21.Bxf3 Be6. 19...e5 20.Nb3!? Bc6 The move has been criticized, but the alternative move 20...Be6!? 21.h5 Na4 gave White a wide variety of opportunities. 21.Bf3! f5 22.gxf5 gxf5 23.Na5 Intresting could be 23.Rg1!?.

23...f4 Dreev and other commentators suggested an exchange sacrifice 23...Rxa5!? 24.bxa5 Na4 although the move more corresponds to the position, White is still undoubtedly stronger. One of the ideas is - 25.Bg5!?. 24.Bf2 Na4 25.Nxc6 bxc6 strategically Black is in a serious trouble. 26.0–0?! Apparently those suggesting moving the king on e2 are right, one could start from for instance , 26.Rg1. 26...c5?! It seems that Black had to better play 26...Bf6. At this stage the decisions were made so to say "by eye". 27.b5 Bf6 28.Kh1 Nb6? Carlsen's mistake wasn't punished.

29.Rcd1? After 29.Rfd1! Black would be in a serious trouble will little chances to escape. Magnus was planning 29...Bxh4? (White's idea is 29...Be7 30.Bxc5 dxc5? 31.Qg2+), but after 30.Rg1+ Kh8 31.Rg2 Black can't defend from the threats on the king's flank (strong was also  31.Rg4 with the following idea 31...Bxf2 32.Qxf2 Ra7 33.Rh4+). 29...Kh8! White maintains better chances but a draw with a guaranteed first place was a priority for the leader. Caruana was content with a draw which he may regret sometime. 30.Qxd6 Qxd6 31.Rxd6 Nxc4 32.Rd5 Ne3! 33.Bxe3 fxe3 34.Be2 Bxh4 35.Rf5 Rxf5 36.exf5

36...Rd8 37.Rxd8+ Bxd8 38.Kg2 Kg7 39.Kf3 Kf6 40.Ke4 c4 41.Bxc4 Bb6 42.Bd3 Moving the king on d5 gives white no chances to play for a win, the draw agreement was timely.. 1/2 (Mikhail Golubev's commentary)

In the only decisive game of the round Topalov beat Nakamura in Berlin endgame.


After 27.Rh1? Bb7 28.Re1 Re8 29.Nfd2 Ne5! White's worse position became extremely tough. After several moves Black started converting the advanatge. 

Aronian let Vachier-Lagrave to escape in a tough position. 


Black poorly played a shar line of Philidor defense starting making mistakes at least from  already the tenth move. White has a considerable advanatge 17.Bxd6 (strong is 17.Rxd6!? - Aronian) 17...Qe6 18.e5 (a mistake, White should have played 18.Kb1! - Aronian) 18...Bxe5 19.Bxe5 Qxe5 20.h7 Rde8 21.Qxf7?! Re7 22.Qg8+ Kc7 23.Rde1?!

Aronian's poor shape is also proved by the fact he followed the mistaken variation till the end. Now Black averts the danger with a simple blow. 23...Rexh7! (possible is 23...Rhxh7, although it is weaker due to 24.Rxe5 Rxh1+ 25.Kd2 Rxe5 26.Qg3) 24.Qxh7 Rxh7 25.Rxe5 Rxh1+ 26.Kd2 Kd6 27.Re3 Rh2 28.Ke1 Rh1+ 29.Kd2 Rh2 30.Ke1 Rh1+ 1/2

Caruana has 7.5/8 two rounds to go. Carlsen is second with 4,5. Topalov has 4 points, Aronian and Vachier-Lagrave have 3 points each, Nakamura occupies bottom of the table with only 2 points. 

[Event "2nd Sinquefield Cup"] [Site "Saint Louis USA"] [Date "2014.09.04"] [Round "8.1"] [White "Caruana, Fabiano"] [Black "Carlsen, Magnus"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "B36"] [WhiteElo "2801"] [BlackElo "2877"] [PlyCount "83"] [EventDate "2014.08.27"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 g6 5. c4 Nf6 6. Nc3 d6 7. f3 Nxd4 8. Qxd4 Bg7 9. Be3 O-O 10. Qd2 a5 11. b3 a4 12. b4 Be6 13. Rc1 Nd7 14. Be2 Nb6 15. Nb5 a3 16. Nd4 Bd7 17. h4 h5 18. g4 hxg4 19. fxg4 e5 20. Nb3 Bc6 21. Bf3 f5 22. gxf5 gxf5 23. Na5 f4 24. Bf2 Na4 25. Nxc6 bxc6 26. O-O c5 27. b5 Bf6 28. Kh1 Nb6 29. Rcd1 Kh8 30. Qxd6 Qxd6 31. Rxd6 Nxc4 32. Rd5 Ne3 33. Bxe3 fxe3 34. Be2 Bxh4 35. Rf5 Rxf5 36. exf5 Rd8 37. Rxd8+ Bxd8 38. Kg2 Kg7 39. Kf3 Kf6 40. Ke4 c4 41. Bxc4 Bb6 42. Bd3 1/2-1/2 [Event "2nd Sinquefield Cup"] [Site "Saint Louis USA"] [Date "2014.09.04"] [Round "8.2"] [White "Aronian, Levon"] [Black "Vachier Lagrave, Maxime"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "C41"] [WhiteElo "2805"] [BlackElo "2768"] [PlyCount "60"] [EventDate "2014.08.27"] 1. Nf3 d6 2. d4 Nf6 3. Nc3 Nbd7 4. e4 e5 5. g4 g6 6. g5 Nh5 7. Bh3 exd4 8. Nxd4 h6 9. Bxd7+ Bxd7 10. h4 Be7 11. gxh6 Bxh4 12. Be3 c6 13. Nf5 gxf5 14. Qxh5 Bf6 15. O-O-O Qe7 16. Bf4 O-O-O 17. Bxd6 Qe6 18. e5 Bxe5 19. Bxe5 Qxe5 20. h7 Rde8 21. Qxf7 Re7 22. Qg8+ Kc7 23. Rde1 Rexh7 24. Qxh7 Rxh7 25. Rxe5 Rxh1+ 26. Kd2 Kd6 27. Re3 Rh2 28. Ke1 Rh1+ 29. Kd2 Rh2 30. Ke1 Rh1+ 1/2-1/2 [Event "2nd Sinquefield Cup"] [Site "Saint Louis USA"] [Date "2014.09.04"] [Round "8.3"] [White "Nakamura, Hikaru"] [Black "Topalov, Veselin"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "C67"] [WhiteElo "2787"] [BlackElo "2772"] [PlyCount "114"] [EventDate "2014.08.27"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Nxe4 5. d4 Nd6 6. Bxc6 dxc6 7. dxe5 Nf5 8. Qxd8+ Kxd8 9. h3 Ke8 10. Nc3 Ne7 11. Ne4 Ng6 12. Re1 h6 13. Kh2 c5 14. c4 Be6 15. b3 b6 16. g4 h5 17. Kg3 Rd8 18. Neg5 Bc8 19. Bb2 Be7 20. Rad1 Rxd1 21. Rxd1 hxg4 22. hxg4 f6 23. exf6 gxf6 24. Re1 Kf8 25. Ne4 Kf7 26. Bc1 Rg8 27. Rh1 Bb7 28. Re1 Re8 29. Nfd2 Ne5 30. Bb2 Nd3 31. Rb1 Rg8 32. Kf3 Nxb2 33. Rxb2 Bc8 34. g5 f5 35. Nf6 Rxg5 36. Nd5 Bb7 37. Rb1 Rg4 38. Rh1 Bd6 39. Ke2 Rd4 40. Rh7+ Kg6 41. Rd7 Bxd5 42. cxd5 Rxd5 43. Nc4 b5 44. Nxd6 cxd6 45. Rxa7 b4 46. a4 bxa3 47. Rxa3 Re5+ 48. Kd3 Kg5 49. Ra6 Re1 50. Kd2 Re6 51. Rb6 Kg4 52. b4 cxb4 53. Rxb4+ Kf3 54. Kd1 f4 55. Rd4 Re4 56. Rd2 d5 57. Ra2 Kg2 0-1 

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