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Sergey Karjakin vs Bu Xiangzhi
Russian Team Championship (2008), Dagomys RUS, rd 4, Apr-05
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation. English Attack (B90)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Apr-05-08  Xaurus: Yes, a very nice game. I love attacks!
Apr-05-08  Dr. Funkenstein: Is the pawn sacrifice on a4 really sound? Does white have to take with the bishop and not the knight?.
Apr-05-08  positionalgenius: Very nice attack by Bu- impressive.
Apr-06-08  outsider: one of the best games by bu, no doubt, a masterpiece
Apr-06-08  sallom89: <Dr. Funkenstein> i believe any good chess player who castles opposite side should create a strong attack, that pawn sac opened the file which favors black i believe.. what a nice game!
Apr-06-08  mistreaver: Imho 24 Qb6 would have been stronger. It would prevent b- pawn advance and bring queen closer to the king.
Apr-06-08  mistreaver: It is also quite interesting that Bu now has 3 wins against Karjakin in 4 games. Seems like his style doesn't suit Sergei.
Apr-06-08  Augalv: Maybe Bu has some sort of psychological power over Sergey :)
Apr-06-08  Dr. Funkenstein: Sallom89: One of the reasons for the Be3 variation of the Najdorf's popularity is that it's not just a slugfest (like most lines of the Bg5 variation) even though some games make it appear that way. White actually has a strong positional basis based on the queenside pawn majority and the weak d5 square. In many games in this variation white attacks to put black on the defensive and then trades down into a positionally won ending to convert the win. Therefore a risky sacrifice by black just to create an attack can easily backfire in this line as black could be in a bad endgame before he realizes it.

That said, I'm sure Bu had plenty of good reasons to prepare this sacrifice which was played against his countryman Wang Yue (the only other game in this line listed in database) in 2006 in Yuriy Kryvoruchko vs Wang Yue (sorry I don't know how to hyperlink these games). He differed from Yue's 16. ...Nb4 instead choosing 16. ...Nc7 to trade off the white bishop.

I'm curious if white can take with the knight instead of the bishop. Nxa4 is an ugly looking move and the knight can't reach d5 in one move so maybe that's reason enough. However, it also allows either the knight or the bishop to reach the b6 square which might tie black up for a bit. I do get the feeling though that I might be missing a tactical refutation. Anybody have any thoughts on this?

Apr-06-08  sallom89: < Dr. Funkenstein> interesting, many thanks.
Apr-06-08  lopium: Instinct lead black to win. So beautiful!
Apr-06-08  thegreatzidane: I was wondering, what is the winning line for black if 33. Qxd5? I couldnt find any moves though.....
Apr-06-08  gorash: <thegreatzidane> 33...Qxd5 34.Rxd5 Ra1+ wins the rook
Apr-06-08  Dr. Funkenstein: Good question Zidane, my Fritz like Rc4 threatening the c3 pawn although I'm not sure black has anything after Qe5 because of Rc5 Qd4. I'm also just learning to use Fritz so I'm not sure I have in the best analysis mode for the given situation.
Apr-06-08  Ron: Not only in this game but in a previous game in this tournament, Bu Xiangzhi vs V Zvjaginsev, 2008, Bu Xiangzhi sacrificed a pawn in order to have an open rook file against his opponent's castled king.
Apr-06-08  mikeddot: Amazing game!! I'm impressed.
Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: Is it just me, or white's h1 rook never moved?
Apr-06-08  mikeddot: Sergey moved the h1 rook a few millimeters when adjusting it at the beginning of the game.
Apr-06-08  weisyschwarz: Great concentration by Bu, playing his plan seemingly without regard to what Sergey was doing. 12...a4 is intriguing.
Apr-07-08  thegreatzidane: <gorash> There is 34. exd5 after 33...Qxd5. White does not necessarily have to take back with the rook.
Apr-07-08  Augalv:

click for larger view

Sharp position, Black sacrificed exchange for loose shelter around White's King.I think that White should be a bit better but he must proceed very carefully.

25.h5 Qb7 26.h6

They say that attack is best defence!


click for larger view

First critical moment.Each tempo is important.


It looks that 27.hxg7? is good but 27..Qxa2+ 28.Kc1 Bxb3 29.Qh2! h5 ( 29..Qxc2+ 30.Qxc2 Bxc2 31.Kxc2 Kxg7 32.Rh4 and White is better ) 30.gxh6 Kh7 31.Rdg1 Bf6!! is better for Black (diagram)

click for larger view

27..Bf8 28.Qd4 Qa3

If 28..Bxa2+ then 29.Nxa2 Qxa2+ 30.Kc1 and it's not clear how can Black continue attack.

29.Qb4 Bxa2+ 30.Nxa2 Qxa2+ 31.Kc1 d5 32.Qd4 Ra4 ( diagram )

If 32..dxe4 then 33.Qxe4 is better for White.

click for larger view


Huge mistake.33.Qxd5 only move here, 33..Rc4! 34.Kd2 Qb2 35.Ke2 Qxc2+ 36.Qd2 is better for White.


Very strong move.

34.Kd2 Qb2 35.Ke2??

Just a blunder.35.Qxf4 Bd6! 36.Qxd6 Qxc3+ 37.Ke2 Qe3+ 38.Kf1 Qxf3+ is better for Black but White can continue.

35..Qxc2+ 36.Rd2 d3+ 0-1

Mate in four to follow.

Extracted from blog about Sergey Karjakin

Apr-17-08  ex0duz: Really impressive attack(12.a4) by Bu against Karjakin, who usually seems to be quite at home playing the najdorf.. but here he just ends up getting crushed. Bu seems to be playing marvellous chess at the moment. The way he's going, he'll be in the top 10 within the year.. ♖♘♗♕♔♗♘♖
Jun-17-08  Whitehat1963: How about 27. Qd4?
Nov-19-09  feitang: A very good game of Bu
Nov-13-16  Kylechess123: Go bu xianzhi!
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