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Ivanchuk-Kramnik annotated by Chess Evolution

User Rating: / 9
Written by Administrator   
Thursday, 29 August 2013

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(15) Ivanchuk,Vassily (2731) - Kramnik,Vladimir (2784) [D37]

FIDE World Cup 2013 Tromso NOR (4.1), 20.08.2013

[CE Team]

The position looks like it is close to being equal, but Black still has some practical chances. The question is, how to make use of it?! Kramnik will show us how to push your opponent to the limit!

31...Qb3! The only move to go on, as of course Black's only chance is to keep the a-pawn alive. [31...Qxd3 would have been the wrong choice. 32.Rxd3 Rc3 33.Rxd4 Rxa3 34.Rd8+ Kh7 35.Ra8 With an easy draw.]
White probably doesn't have anything better.
Black wants to play Rc1 next and the queen endgame could suddenly be really dangerous for White.

Another very strong move. Black covers the white squares and what is most important is that he doesn't give White a chance to push e6 in the future. The main winning idea of Black is of course to push the a-pawn as far as possible. 34.Qd7 Well played by White, there is no time to be passive. White needs to create counterplay as fast as he can.
34...Ra8 35.Rd3 This is also the correct move. In case of a rook endgame, it is much better to block the a-pawn on a4 than on a2 or a1.
Both players were getting short on time and Kramnik puts Ivanchuk in front of a difficult decision. Is the position after the exchange of queens a draw or is it better to defend with the queens on the board?!

36.Qb7! A good choice. [36.Qxe6 would have led to a more tricky endgame. 36...fxe6 37.Ra3 And now it is important for Black to play 37...g5! The position probably still remains a draw, but White needs to be careful now, which is of course unpleasant when you think the draw is so close.]
Black has no choice but to offer the exchange of queens again, in order to keep the rook on the a-file, which is his only chance to be better.
This is already a serious mistake. Now Black's advantage is getting clearer. [The right move was 37.Qxc8+ Rxc8 38.Ra3 Ra8 Black needs to put the rook behind the pawn, which is his only chance to win. 39.f4 Followed by Kf3Ke4g4f5. This position should be a clear draw.]
Black frees his queen, who was protecting the rook on a8.
38.Ra3 Qe8
And now we can see very clearly that the draw is not an easy task to achieve here at all. White can quickly find himself in big danger.
39.Qe4 g6 A prophylactical move. Black cannot do anything forced, so he just improves his position.

What a horrible positional mistake, as the white king is now going to find himself in big trouble. [40.h4 was the right move and after 40...h5 White should just keep on "waiting" with 41.Kh2 Still Black remain some winning chances, but of course position is close to a draw]
Now Black has a lot of ways to make White's life miserable. In a lot of lines a move like Qd7 followed by Rd5 can be a real killer.
41.h4 Kg7
Before the final action, Black puts all his pieces on the perfect squares. In the current position, even an exchange of queens could lead to a quite unpleasant position for White, but of course it is better for Black to keep the queens on the board. The free a-pawn and the mating threats against the white king give Black very good practical chances to win the game.
This is the last shocking move of the game, after which it is really over. It is even difficult to understand what White missed here...

[42.Kh2 would leave White with some hopes of surviving the game.]
42...Qc6+! The game is now totally over.
43.Kf2 Rb5
Black's mating attack is just crushing.
44.Qd4 Qc2+ 45.Kf3 Rb2
A really tough loss for Ivanchuk, who showed slightly shocking play for the chess genius that we know him to be! 


Replay the game

Related materials:
Kamsky-Mamedyarov annotated by GM Naiditsch

Comments (3)
1. Written by This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it on 07:41 30 2013 .
White should just keep on "waiting" with 41.Kh2 Still Black remain some winning chances, but of course position is close to a draw]  
white should just keep on "waiting". 41.Kh2 Some winning chances still remain for black, but of course the position is close to a draw.]  
Tactics are more fun than these late middle games. You're better at these. 
Love you Natalia,  
2. Written by This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it on 11:23 30 2013 .
A highly-instructive Queen-Rook endgame by Kramnik at his best.
3. Written by This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it on 21:09 26 2013 .
Ivanchuk-Kramnik annotated by Chess Evolution - Welcome to the official website of Natalia Pogonina!

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 29 August 2013 )
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