LIFE Master AJ: Topalov,V (2757) - Kasimdzhanov,R (2678) [D31]
XXII SuperGM Linares ESP (12), 08.03.2005
A great game of chess, full of fighting content. It is not clear where Black went wrong.
1.d4 d5; 2.c4 e6; 3.Nc3 Be7; 4.Nf3 Nf6; 5.Bf4 0-0; 6.e3 c5;
This is always the 'book' reply ... but I do not like it. (I have said so many times in print. See the following web page for some analysis: http://www.geocities.com/thegotmman...)
7.dxc5 Bxc5; 8.a3 Nc6; 9.Qc2 Qa5; 10.Nd2 Bb4;
This move is probably too aggressive, although it is also a 'book' line here. (This is all probably based on the game, Topalov - Kramnik; CORUS "A" / Wijk aan Zee, NED; 2001. This has to be one of the key games in this line.)
11.cxd5 exd5; 12.Bd3 d4; 13.0-0 Bxc3; 14.Nc4 Qh5;
The standard prescription here, but maybe the Queen would have bit safer on d8?
This is much too aggressive ... and possibly even dubious. ('?!') The pawn capture on c3 (or even e3) was a thought here.
16.Bg3! dxe3; 17.Rae1,
A very interesting gambit, for which Topalov gains quite a bit of play. (But there may have been a simpler solution.)
[ 17.Nxe3 Rd8; 18.Rab1,
White is at least a little better here. ]
A standard response. (Korchnoi - a player that I greatly admire - would have grabbed the pawn on f2, I'll wager.)
[ After 17...exf2+; 18.Rxf2,
White has tremendous play, and a fair amount of "comp" on the open lines here. ]
18.fxe3 Nde7!?; 19.Nd6 b6; 20.Rb1!!,
An excellent move, White finds an unusual switchback and brings this Rook strongly into play. The Black Queen suddenly finds herself in a bit of a bind.
[ Fritz 8.0 prefers: 20.c4, here. ]
20...f6!?; 21.Rb5 Ne5; 22.Rf4 N7g6; 23.Rd4 Bd7!?;
(Maybe - '?!') Black fails to find the best defense.
[ >/= 23...Rab8!; 24.Qd2 a6!; was probably a better try. ]
White's centralized Rooks creat a strong visual impression, and also give Topalov a tremendous advantage in this position.
[ 24.Be2, ]
24...Be6; 25.Be2 Qh6; 26.Bf4! Nxf4; 27.exf4 g6?!; (Probably - '?')
Black was obviously under a lot of pressure here. The play of 27...BxR/d5?; fails miserably to 28.Nf5!, and then 29.Ne7+, forking the Black King and Queen.
[ 27...Kh8; was probably forced here, although White retains a fair advantage. ]
The rest is a slaughter - and really requires no comment.
28.Qe4 Bxd5; 29.Qxd5+ Kh8; 30.Re4! Nd7; 31.Nf7+ Rxf7; 32.Qxf7,
(Black Resigns, 1-0)
A nice crush by V. Topalov - I watched most of this contest on the Internet.
---> USCF LIFE-Master A.J. Goldsby I