Shamkir Round 5: Caruana Maintains His Lead, Giri Is a Close Second

Время публикации: 31.05.2016 12:32 | Последнее обновление: 31.05.2016 12:32

Magic spectacles?

At the halfway stage of the Vugar Gashimov Memorial tournament in Shamkir we now have a clear answer to our question posed at the start of the tournament: who is the favourite in Magnus Carlsen’s absence? After a first round where everybody drew the top-rated Fabiano Caruana has scored an incredible four wins on the trot. On 4½ out of 5 he leads the second-highest rated player, Anish Giri, by half a point. Third-rated Sergey Karjakin is indeed in his rightful third place so far, but a full 1½ points behind Fabiano.

So far the host country’s players have not gained much success: Shakhriyar Mamedyarov is on even stevens after five rounds, while all his compatriots have a negative result.

Teimour Radjabov helped Caruana deliver a lesson on weak squares

Fabiano CARUANA - Teimour RADJABOV
Gashimov Memorial 2016, 5th round

Sicilian Defence
(Commentary by Alexei Yarovinsky)
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 g6 4.Bxc6 dxc6 5.d3 Bg7 6.h3 Nf6 (the move 6...Nh6 brought Radjabov a win against Karjakin seven years ago) 7.Nc3 0-0 8.Bf4!? The point of this move is to prevent е7-е5. If 8.Be3 Black could play 8...b6 9.Qd2 e5, and if 10.Nxe5?!, then 10...Nxe4 with good play for Black.

8...b6 8...b6 The game Artemiev - Khalifman (Russian Championship 2015, 1/2) continued: 8...Nh5!? 9.Be3 Qd6 10.Qd2, and Black nevertheless managed to execute the desired 10...e5. After 11.g4 Qf6 the position was pretty sharp. Black could also play 8...Nd7!?, again with the idea of е7-е5. White could reply by himself playing 9.e5!?. The computers recommend 8...c4!?, which has only been seen in one game, by little known players Rodriguez - Ordonez (Havana 2009, 1-0), however, after the simple capture 9.dxc4 it’s not clear how Black is supposed to equalize. For example: 9...Qb6 10.Qc1 Qb4 11.0-0 Qxc4 12.Re1 – Black has an ugly light-squared bishop, which makes his position somewhat unappealing.
9.Qd2 Re8 10.0-0-0!? White castles on the opposite side from his opponent, so the game becomes one of who will mate his opponent the quickest.
10...a5 11.Ne5 (the computer’s recommendation 11.a4 looks daft to me)
11...b5 12.Qe3

12...Qb6? Radjabov himself noted after the game that this move was a mistake, and who are we to disagree? "After that move position is worse for black, despite comp's evaluation," he wrote on Twitter, adding the correct move 12...Nd7!! (the exclamation marks are his own) 13.Nxd7 (13.Nxc6? Qb6 14.Nxe7+ Rxe7 15.Nd5 Qe6 16.Nxe7+ Qxe7 doesn’t work – although White is formally OK in terms of material what counts here are pieces, not pawns, and the White king has a high chance of ending up mated) 13...Bd4!, and after 14.Qg3 Qxd7 Radjabov believes that Black is equal. It’s hard to argue with this, although it’s also clear that there is everything left to play in this position.
13.Bh6 Bh8 If 13...Nxe4 the game might continue 14.Bxg7 Nxc3 15.bxc3 Kxg7 16.h4 h5 17.g4 Bxg4 18.Nxg4 hxg4 19.h5 with a dangerous attack.
14.f4 a4 15.Rhf1!? Caruana decides that this rook will be useful on the f-file

15...e6? Teimour surrenders the f6 and d6 squares and also ‘kills’ his light-squared bishop. Here he definitely had to play 15...Nd7! 16.Nxd7 Bxd7 17.e5 (but clearly not 17.f5?, as after 17...a3! the White king faces a mating attack) 17...f5!, taking the е4 square away from the knight, with an unclear position.
16.g4 a3 Nor can Black solve his problems after: 16...b4 17.Nb1 b3 18.cxb3 axb3 19.a3 Nd7 20.Nxd7 Bxd7 21.e5 – Black is already lost here.
17.b4 Nd7 18.Nxd7 Bxd7 19.e5 Now Black’s other bishop is shut out of the game. White already has a decisive advantage.
19...f5 20.Ne2 Bg7 21.Bxg7 Kxg7 22.h4 fxg4 23.h5 gxh5 24.Ng3 Kh8 25.Nxh5 Re7 26.Nf6 Be8 27.f5! Black’s king is critically weak

28.Rxf5 White would have won more quickly with 28.Qg5! (or he could also have first played 28.Rh1!) Bg6 29.Rh1 Rg7 30.Qxg6 Rxg6 31.Rxh7#.
28...Qc7 29.Rg5 Rg7 30.Rh1 Bg6 31.Rxg4 Qf7 32.Kb1 cxb4 33.Qd4 Bf5? In a bad position Radjabov hastens the conclusion. He could have held on for longer after 33...c5! 34.Qxc5 Qb7.
34.e6! Rxg4 No other continuations save the game either: 34...Qe7 35.Rxg7 Qxg7 36.Qe5 Bg6 37.e7 or 34...Bxe6 35.Rxh7+ Rxh7 36.Nxh7+ Kxh7 37.Qe4+ Kh6 38.Qe3+ Kh5 39.Qh3#..
35.exf7 Rxd4

36.Ne8! An elegant way to protect his pawn. 1-0
"Anyway an interesting game, not boring at all," Radjabov concluded.

Translated by Ilan Rubin

[Event "Vugar Gashimov Mem 2016"] [Site "Shamkir AZE"] [Date "2016.05.30"] [Round "5.3"] [White "Caruana, Fabiano"] [Black "Radjabov, Teimour"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B31"] [Opening "Sicilian"] [Variation "Nimzovich-Rossolimo attack (with ...g6, without ...d6)"] [EventDate "2016.05.26"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 g6 4. Bxc6 dxc6 5. d3 Bg7 6. h3 Nf6 7. Nc3 O-O 8. Bf4 b6 9. Qd2 Re8 10. O-O-O a5 11. Ne5 b5 12. Qe3 Qb6 13. Bh6 Bh8 14. f4 a4 15. Rhf1 e6 16. g4 a3 17. b4 Nd7 18. Nxd7 Bxd7 19. e5 f5 20. Ne2 Bg7 21. Bxg7 Kxg7 22. h4 fxg4 23. h5 gxh5 24. Ng3 Kh8 25. Nxh5 Re7 26. Nf6 Be8 27. f5 exf5 28. Rxf5 Qc7 29. Rg5 Rg7 30. Rh1 Bg6 31. Rxg4 Qf7 32. Kb1 cxb4 33. Qd4 Bf5 34. e6 Rxg4 35. exf7 Rxd4 36. Ne8 1-0 [Event "Vugar Gashimov Mem 2016"] [Site "Shamkir AZE"] [Date "2016.05.30"] [Round "5.4"] [White "Safarli, Eltaj"] [Black "Giri, Anish"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B51"] [Opening "Sicilian"] [Variation "Canal-Sokolsky (Nimzovich-Rossolimo, Moscow) attack"] [EventDate "2016.05.26"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. Bb5+ Nd7 4. c4 Nf6 5. Nc3 g6 6. O-O Bg7 7. Ba4 O-O 8. h3 Nb6 9. Bb3 e5 10. d3 Ne8 11. Bg5 f6 12. Be3 f5 13. Bg5 Bf6 14. Bh6 Bg7 15. Bg5 Qd7 16. exf5 gxf5 17. a4 a5 18. Nb5 Kh8 19. Re1 Bf6 20. Bxf6+ Nxf6 21. d4 e4 22. dxc5 dxc5 23. Qxd7 Nbxd7 24. Nd2 Ne5 25. Bc2 Bd7 26. f3 Rad8 27. Rad1 Rg8 28. Kh2 Be8 29. Nc7 Bh5 30. Ne6 Rde8 31. Nc7 Re7 32. Nd5 Nxd5 33. cxd5 exf3 34. d6 Reg7 35. g4 Nxg4+ 36. hxg4 Rxg4 37. Nxf3 Rg2+ 38. Kh3 Bxf3 39. Bb3 R8g3+ 40. Kh4 Rg4+ 41. Kh3 Bxd1 42. d7 R4g3+ 43. Kh4 Rd3 0-1[Event "Vugar Gashimov Mem 2016"] [Site "Shamkir AZE"] [Date "2016.05.30"] [Round "5.1"] [White "Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar"] [Black "Mamedov, Rauf"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "D45"] [Opening "QGD semi-Slav"] [Variation "Stoltz variation"] [EventDate "2016.05.26"] 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Nf3 e6 5. e3 Nbd7 6. Qc2 Bd6 7. Be2 dxc4 8. Bxc4 O-O 9. O-O b5 10. Bd3 Bb7 11. e4 e5 12. h3 Re8 13. dxe5 Nxe5 14. Nxe5 Bxe5 15. Be3 a6 16. f4 Bxc3 17. bxc3 c5 18. e5 c4 19. Bf5 g6 20. Rad1 Nd5 21. Be4 Nxe3 22. Rxd8 Nxc2 23. Rxa8 Bxa8 24. Bxc2 f6 25. f5 gxf5 26. exf6 Re2 27. Rf2 Re1+ 28. Rf1 Re2 29. Rf2 Re1+ 30. Rf1 Re2 1/2-1/2 [Event "Vugar Gashimov Mem 2016"] [Site "Shamkir AZE"] [Date "2016.05.30"] [Round "5.2"] [White "Karjakin, Sergey"] [Black "Hou Yifan"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C80"] [Opening "Ruy Lopez"] [Variation "open, Bernstein variation"] [EventDate "2016.05.26"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Nxe4 6. d4 b5 7. Bb3 d5 8. dxe5 Be6 9. Nbd2 Be7 10. c3 O-O 11. Bc2 f5 12. Nb3 Qd7 13. Nbd4 Nxd4 14. Nxd4 c5 15. Nxe6 Qxe6 16. f3 Ng5 17. a4 Rad8 18. axb5 axb5 19. Bxg5 Bxg5 20. f4 Be7 21. Kh1 Qb6 22. Qd3 c4 23. Qh3 g6 24. g4 d4 25. gxf5 Qc6+ 26. Qg2 Qxg2+ 27. Kxg2 d3 28. Bd1 Rxf5 29. Bg4 Rff8 30. Ra5 h5 31. Bd1 b4 32. Ra6 bxc3 33. bxc3 Kh7 34. Ra7 Rf7 35. Rc7 Rd5 36. Rxc4 Bf8 37. Rc8 Rc5 38. Rd8 Bh6 39. Rxd3 Rxf4 40. Rd7+ Kh8 41. Rxf4 Bxf4 42. e6 Bg5 43. e7 Bxe7 44. Rxe7 Rxc3 45. Bf3 Rc8 46. Kg3 Rg8 47. Kh4 Rg7 48. Re8+ Kh7 49. Kg5 Ra7 50. Bd5 Kg7 51. Re6 Kh7 52. Be4 Ra5+ 53. Kf6 1-0 [Event "Vugar Gashimov Mem 2016"] [Site "Shamkir AZE"] [Date "2016.05.30"] [Round "5.5"] [White "Harikrishna, Pentala"] [Black "Eljanov, Pavel"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C49"] [Opening "Four knights"] [EventDate "2016.05.26"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Bb5 Bb4 5. O-O O-O 6. d3 Bxc3 7. bxc3 d6 8. Nd2 Bd7 9. f4 exf4 10. Rxf4 Ne7 11. Bxd7 Nxd7 12. c4 Ne5 13. Bb2 f6 14. Nf1 Qd7 15. Ne3 a6 16. Qh5 b5 17. Rh4 h6 18. Rf1 bxc4 19. d4 Nf7 20. Ng4 Qb5 21. Nxf6+ gxf6 22. e5 Kh8 23. Bc1 Ng8 24. Qg6 dxe5 25. Rxf6 Qb1 26. Rf1 exd4 27. Bxh6 Qxf1+ 28. Kxf1 Nfxh6+ 29. Kg1 Rab8 30. Rxh6+ Nxh6 31. Qxh6+ Kg8 32. Qg6+ Kh8 33. h3 d3 34. Qh6+ Kg8 35. Qxa6 dxc2 36. Qxc4+ Kh8 37. Qc3+ Kg8 38. Qxc2 Rfc8 39. Qc6 Kf7 40. a4 Ke7 41. a5 1-0 

Today (31 May) is a rest day. Round 6 will be played on 1 June.


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