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GM Bacrot - GM Giri Annotated by GM Naiditsch

User Rating: / 9
Written by Administrator   
Thursday, 24 October 2013
By GM Arkadij Naiditsch, #1 German chess player, FIDE 2724

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We are in the first round of the Bundesliga season 2013/2014. Our opponent Emsdetten came out with an almost full line-up, so we did not expect to have an easy match, but we won it with an amazing 6.51.5. The first one to bring us in the lead was Etienne, who really completely outplayed his younger opponent from an about equal position and managed to finish the game with a bang!

Bacrot,Etienne (2730) - Giri,Anish (2749) [B52]

Bundesliga 201314 Emsdetten GER (1.1), 12.10.2013

[Arkadij Naiditsch]

View the game

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Bb5+ Of course this is not the main move to fight for an opening advantage, but it is well known that Giri is usually very well prepared and it is a good idea to take him out of opening as soon as possible.

It seems like the French players have been working a bit on this rare move. Just a few weeks ago Fressinet tried it against Gelfand, but without any success.
[The idea behind the move 4.c4 becomes clear after 4...Bxb5 5.cxb5 and the Black knight cannot develop to his optimal square c6.]
5.Nc3 g6 Very solid play by Black. The bishop on g7 is going to take a nice position.
6.00 Bg7 7.d4
Sooner or later White needs to push d4 anyway move, so there was no reason to wait...
7...cxd4 8.Nxd4 00 9.Bxd7 Qxd7 Now we got a position that could also be reached by playing 4.Bxd7, so we are more or less back to the main line after a different move order.
This is probably one of the only moves to go on for White. [10.f3 with the idea of playing Be3 next doesn't lead to anything for White: 10...Rc8 11.b3 d5! This move is nothing new, it was already played many times. 12.exd5

12...Nxd5! Easy but pretty!  13.Nxd5 e6 Black wins the piece back with an equal position.]
10...Nc6 11.Bb2 a6
A logical move with the idea to play Nxd4 and b5 next, breaking White's pawn structure, but I am not sure it was the best one. [11...e6!? followed by Rfd8 and d5 could be an interesting option for Black, as it is hard to imagine that White has big chances to be better here.]
Another tricky move by White, giving Black the choice with what to take on c6.
This already looks like a clear positional mistake. [Better was 12...bxc6 13.Re1 Qc7 and if White is better, it is a minimal advantage.]
With this move White is fixing his slightly better position. It is already time for Black to be careful in order to not get into serious trouble.
Once again Black doesn't feel the danger. [13...Rfe8 And only then decide whether to take on d5 or not would have been a clearly better choice. Black should not be afraid of 14.Nxf6+ Bxf6 15.Bxf6 exf6 followed by Re6, with an about equal position.]
14.exd5 Qc5 15.Bxg7 Kxg7

Only heavy pieces are left on the board and we can clearly see that White is better. The pressure on the e7 pawn is quite unpleasant and Black's play with b5 is a bit too late.
16...Rfe8 [Maybe Black could have tried 16...e5 17.dxe6 fxe6 but after 18.Qd2 White has a slightly better position and very pleasant play by putting pressure on the d6 and e6 pawns.]
17.Qd2 The queen is perfectly placed on d2. White has multiple ideas: to play Rac1 and b4 or maybe to play Re4Rae1 and Rh4, with some attack on the black king.
Another positional mistake by Giri. [It was really time to look for some play: 17...e5 18.dxe6 Rxe6 And Black is still holding, although the position is already very unpleasant.]
Simple and very strong! Black is suddenly in big trouble! White wants to play b4 next.
Once again Black doesn't choose the best and after this move White's position is probably almost winning!

[18...bxc4 19.Rxc4 of course looks very bad for Black.; The best chance was to play 18...b4 and of course White is better, but Black is still in the game.]
Etienne gives his opponent a very hard time. Black now has a choice whether to give away the c-file or let White play c5. Both options sound very bad.
19...bxc4 [19...Rac8 20.c5! And of course Black cannot take on c5 because of the check on d4. 20...dxc5 21.bxc5 Rxc5 22.Qd4+]
20.Rxc4 h5
[It would be great for Black to exchange one pair of rooks, but of course it doesn't work: 20...Rac8? 21.Qc3++] 21.Qc3+ Kg8 22.Rc7 Qb6 White reached all that he could dream about. The c-file is under control, the 7th rank is covered and Black doesn't have any counterplay at all.
23.a4! Another strong move by White. Black's only counterplay could be based on playing a5 at some moment and opening the line, but this could never work because of White's b5 reply.
23...Rab8 24.Re4
White blocks all of Black's counterplay again.
Black's position is hopeless but how to finish the game?!
Another very nice strategic decision. White is not only going to put pressure on the queenside, but also crush the kingside.
Giving White a nice finishing move...

And Etienne found it! I guess it was a great pleasure for him to win such a game, completely outplaying his opponent and scoring an important win for the team. 26...Qxc7 27. Qxg6 Kf8 28.Rf4 mate could have illustrated the game even more! 


More annotated games, tactics & endgame puzzles, surprise section/study can be found in the weekly Chess Evolution bulletin.  25 pages total. Subscribe!

Related materials:
GM Nakamura - GM Gelfand annotated by GM Balogh
Kramnik-Grischuk annotated by Naiditsch
Ivanchuk-Grischuk annotated by GM Naiditsch
Laznicka-Topalov annotated by GM Balogh
Caruana-Ivanchuk annotated by GM Naiditsch
Ushenina-Yifan annotated by GM Naiditsch
Naiditsch-Vallejo annotated by GM Naiditsch
Kramnik-Andreikin annotated by GM Naiditsch
Andreikin-Sivlder annotated by GM Naiditsch
Ivanchuk-Kramnik annotated by Chess Evolution GM Team
Kamsky-Mamedyarov annotated by GM Naiditsch

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 24 October 2013 )
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