Wednesday, October 22, 2008

World Chess Championship 2008:
Game 6: Anand takes 3 point lead with yet another win.
Anand, Viswanathan Vs Kramnik, Vladimir
Commentary by IM Malcolm Pein

Will Anand try and kick him when he is down? he didn't in game 4. But he knows his opponent is low so he will just play with white and see what happens. If it's a draw he won't be disappointed but expect a solid line today
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2
Anand played the sharp 4.f3 in game 2 This is a much more positional move. White avoids damage to his pawn structure if Black plays Bxc3+. White often tries to secure the 2 bishops and play with them against bishop and knight, This advantage is particularly potent in an endgame with play on both sides of the board
The most solid response. This line was developed by Oleg Romanishin, one of the most creative players of the 20th century IMHO. Black develops the queen early but this is often a prelude to playing Qf5 or Qe4 looking for a level endgame.
5.cxd5 Qxd5 6.Nf3 Qf5 7.Qb3 Nc6 8.Bd2 0-0 9.h3
9.h3 Another novelty from Vishy! Previously 9.e3 was played. White has the option of playing g4 and if Qg6 Nh4 traps the queen ! Of course the queen can go to a5 but then perhaps the kingside attack might develop in the lady's absence
Vlad is calm, he develops his last minor piece and invites Vishy to lash out with g4. I guess he figures since he is losing with White he might as well provoke a crisis with Black !
He's done it! of course Vishy does not have to attack, he can simply continue Bg2
10...Qa5 11.Rc1 Bb7 12.a3
It was a privelege to have Anatoly Karpov in the analysis room and his view was that after an exchange of queens on d5 White will be slightly better
12...Bxc3 13.Bxc3 Qd5 14.Qxd5
Now exd5 will block the Bb7 and lead to trouble on the c file for Black but after Nxd5 Bd2 White is ready for e4 so I think I like White
14...Nxd5 15.Bd2
Now maybe f7-f5 ? Black has to play for control of the white squares. Also Nf6 would be reasonable when Black controls e4 and threatens Nxd4 exploiting a pin on the long diagonal
15...Nf6 16.Rg1
Black should be more or less OK Rg1 was clearly not a move White wanted to make but he had no choice. Maybe Rac8 and then Ne4 to neutralise the bishop pair by taking on d2 Rfd8 first might be better
[Karpov liked 16.g5 Ne4 17.Bf4]
Black will try and arrange c7-c5 after some preparation perhaps Nc6-e7. Vishy's position is quite good on the queenside but his kingside pieces are innefectual. Rg1 was a major inconvenience. Perhaps now g5 and Bg2 or just Bg2 first
17.Bg2 Ne7 18.Bb4
I am gradually realising that after an exchange of bishops on g2 the white rook emerges on g3 favourably.White's king is handily placed
Black could have played Rfe8 but then he maynot have had time to organise c7-c5
[18...Rfe8 19.Bxe7 Rxe7 20.Ne5 Bxg2 21.Rxg2 c5 22.dxc5 Rxc5 23.Rxc5 bxc5 24.Rg3 is certainly an edge but Black should hold this. Kramnik's move looks like a bold winning attempt but he is losing a pawn. Perhaps White has better but this c5 move is so risky]
19.dxc5 Rfd8 20.Ne5 Bxg2 21.Rxg2
I don't see how Black recovers the pawn
[21...Nc6 22.Nd3! is clearly good for White. Goodness me is he going to go three down ??? 22...Nd4 23.cxb6?? Rxc1+ 24.Nxc1 Nc2+ 25.Kf1 Rd1+; 21...Nc6 22.Nd3! Nd4 23.e3 Nb3 (23...Nf3+ 24.Ke2) 24.Rc3; 21...a5 22.Bd2 Ne4 23.cxb6 Rxd2 24.Rxc8+ Nxc8 25.b7 Rc2! 26.Kd1! wins]
22.Rxc5 Ne4
Kramnik is just going to have to grovel a pawn down here. Very grim. The white rook may be misplaced but his king is great. Vishy has only castled in three of the six games !
23.Rxc8 Rxc8 24.Nd3 Nd5
Maybe now Kd1 and try and slowly unravel. At this stage I can't see how Kramnik can penetrate
It seems that Rc2 is met simply by Bc1 and Kd1
25...Rc2 26.Bc1 f5
This prevents the possible plan of Kd1 f3 and e4 but I think the Kd1 and f3 part are coming anyway
27.Kd1 Rc8 28.f3 Nd6 29.Ke1
Anand is no hurry, there is apparently nothing active White can do
29...a5 30.e3 e5
Trying for some activity but this looks bad
31.gxf5 e4 32.fxe4 Nxe4 33.Bd2 a4
[33...Rc2 34.Kd1?? Nxe3+; but 33...Rc2 34.Re2!]
The computer assessment has jumped and we can see why. Vishy is keeping both extra pawns
34...Nd6 35.Rg4 Nc4 36.e4 Nf6 37.Rg3 Nxb2
Winning back a pawn but now there are great possibilities for White like e4-e5 or Bc3 This looks winning
[37...Nxb2 38.Bc3 Nh5!? 39.Rf3 Nc4 fights on so I guess e5 is better]
38.e5 Nd5 39.f6
Now there is the killer tactic of g6 Ne4 threatening f7+ Kxf7 Nd6+ The computers have called this one and who are we to argue. It's +3
39...Kf7 40.Ne4
Kramnik has only 90 seconds for his last move but 90 minutes would no help. Nd6 is the obvious one but Ng5 is also a killer
Now a White pawn ought to promote, my money's on Freddie the f pawn. Time control, Vlad has left the stage 41 Rxg7+ Ke6 42.Ng5+ Kxe5 43.f7 must be curtains. It just wins a rook. As they say on UK TV, "they think it's all over, it is now" (Wembley 1966) That was 4-2 to England, this is 4,5-1.5 to India
Winning but not as overwhelming as Rxg7 but it won't change the outcome . Now Rg8 42.Nd6+ Nxd6 43.exd6 and Rxg7 will allow the d pawn to promote. This keeps it simple
41...Kg8 42.Rd3
There was a diablolical line
[42.Nf6+ Nxf6 43.exf6 Re8+ 44.Kd1 Rd8 45.Kc1 Nxd2 46.f7+ Kxf7 47.g8Q+ Rxg8 48.Rxg8 Nb3+!]
42...Ndb6 43.Bh6 Nxe5 44.Nf6+ Kf7 45.Rc3
A crowd pleaser
45...Rxc3 46.g8Q+ Kxf6 47.Bg7+ 1-0

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