Saturday, October 18, 2008

World Chess Championship 2008
World Champion Viswanathan Anand defends his title against Vladimir Kramnik in a 12 game match (rapid and blitz tie-breaks if the match finishes 6-6) in Bonn, Germany, October 14th– 2nd November, 2008. The main sponsor is Evonik Industries AG and the prize money 1,5 Million Euro.
Anand - Kramnik Game
Game- 4.
Result: Drawn in 29 moves.
Score: Anand 2½ Kramnik 1½
Commentary by IM Malcolm Pein
1.d4 Nf6
There are 9 games left. After his fantastic win yesterday Anand must be tempted to concentrate on avoiding defeat. But he should leave those kind of thoughts to Kramnik. Experience and countless matches tells us the time to kick a man is when he is down.
2.c4 e6 3.Nf3
Avoiding 3.Nc3 Bb4 the Nimzo-Indian of game 1
3...d5 4.Nc3 Be7 5.Bf4
Anand prefers Bf4 to the more common Bg5 - this can lead to positions with opposite castling after Black plays c5, White takes and plays Qc2 and 0-0-0
5...0-0 6.e3 Nbd7
Well who would have thought it, a wireless network at the KOP end. Kramnik has gone for the solid Queen's Gambit
[6...c5 7.dxc5 Nc6 8.Qc2 Bxc5 9.a3 Qa5 10.0-0-0 is the sharp stuff]
An unusual wrinkle which means either Vishy is going to take no risks today or he is planning c4-c5 andb2-b4
The standard response in the centre now White can force Black to accept an isolated queen's pawn
8.cxd5 Nxd5 9.Nxd5 exd5 10.dxc5 Nxc5
OK, so we can see that Anand's idea is to play rather like Kramnik and reach a position where he can play with a tiny edge and try to exert maximum psychological advantage
White emphasises his control of the square in front of the isolated pawn. This is essential, the pawn must be blocked before it can be attacked
[11...Bf6 is standard but again, Kramnik may be motivated by a desire to avoid any preparation]
12.Be2 Bf6
Often in these lines White plays Bxf6 and Qd4 but it doesn't look likely here. I just hope the football is more entertaining than thisgame
[12...Bf6 13.Bxf6 Qxf6 14.Qd4 Nb3 15.Qxf6 gxf6 16.Rd1 Bc2 17.Rxd5]
13.Bxf6 Qxf6 14.Nd4 Ne6
Black fights for the d4 square
15.Nxf5 Qxf5 16.0-0 Rfd8
Black is more active and this compensates for the weak d5 pawn. If he plays d5-d4 he will be fine
17.Bg4 Qe5 18.Qb3 Nc5
[18...d4 19.Qxb7 gives White a bishop v knight on an open board and some hopes if queens are exchanged]
19.Qb5 b6
White may appear to have a small edge at this point but I can't believe it's much
20.Rfd1 Rd6 21.Rd4 a6 22.Qb4 h5
Once the white bishop has been driven away from the h3-c8 diagonal Black can play Ne6 and he controls the d4 square and then if black can play d5-d4 then any white edge would probably disappear after piece exchanges.
23.Bh3 Rad8 24.g3 g5!
Kramnik plays to evict the bishop as I mentioned before. He is deliberately avoiding Ne6 Bxe6 when he has slight structural weakness and Anand could try and make him suffer although with only a limited chance of success
25.Rad1 g4 26.Bg2 Ne6 27.R4d3 d4
The breakthrough, Liverpool could do with one of those its Liverpool 1-2 Wigan and if any of our Egyptian readers are online today, Zaki just scored a wonder goal. Of course Black is absolutely fine here
28.exd4 Rxd4 29.Rxd4 Rxd4
After another exchange Black would take with the knight. As they say: "queen and knight, they're alright" and if you think about it these two pieces compliment each other. Black is so well centralised White has no active possibilities.
Rather disappointing, I had hoped Vishy would go for it from the start today. Thanks for watching, the score is Anand 2.5-1.5 Kramnik

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