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Vasyl Ivanchuk vs Hikaru Nakamura
Grand Slam Chess Final (2011), Sao Paulo BRA, rd 6, Oct-06
Sicilian Defense: Kan. Knight Variation (B43)  ·  1-0



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  Gypsy: < Aspirador: <Willem Wallekers: 37 ... Be8??? Blind panic.>

Black is lost one way or the other. I actually think that 37...Be8 was quite a good trick. Ivanchuk was down to his last seconds here and one more surprising move could make him lose on time or make the mistake 38.Rexe8?? >

Maybe a good trick for possible timing out. But even in the case of <37...Be8?! 38.Rexe8+?...>, the endgame still looks easily won for White:

<38...Kh7 39.Rh8+ Qxh8 40.Rxh8+> (making the time control) <Kxh8 41.Nc5...>

For instance, 41...Nf3+ 42.Kg2 Ne1+ 43.Kf2 Nxc2 44.Nxa6... 1-0.

Oct-06-11  sevenseaman: Stylish batting, this. At <33. Rc6>, assessing the combination would get the job done must have cost Chuky a chunk of time.

The robbers taught him how to rob too!

Oct-06-11  notyetagm: Game Collection: COORDINATE YOUR PIECES ON LOOSE SQUARES NEXT TO
Oct-07-11  hedgeh0g: Clean-up on aisle 6...
Oct-07-11  DrMAL: Checking with computer verifies black was fine after 17...e5 although it does surprise me that 17...exf5 computes as slightly better I thought it would be the oooposite case both are good along with 17...Rae8 18...Ne5 I suggested during game.

Houdini_20_x64: 26/67 36:45 16,830,518,629
+0.09 17. ... exf5 18.Rxf5 Qd8 19.Qe3 Bc8
0.00 17. ... Raf8 18.Rh3 Ne5 19.Qh4 Re8
0.00 17. ... e5 18.Qh4 Nb8 19.Rh3 Nbd7

Line after 17...e5 shows how to re-position black N. 18...Ne7 was surprising N was poorly placed here.

Houdini_20_x64: 24/72 13:50 6,281,030,005
+1.24 19.Rh3 d5 20.Rff3 Rgc8 21.Bxe7 Qxe7

During the first flurry of moves that followed white made some inaccuracy too, and position was equal again it seemed so but there wasn't enough time to be more sure. 22...h6 did not look as most accurate and it evaluates as such as well.

Houdini_20_x64: 23/70 07:06 3,269,817,276
0.00 22. ... Qb6 23.Bxd5 Nexd5 24.g5 Rac8 25.gxf6
-0.39 22. ... h6 23.g5 Nxe4 24.Nxe4 Bxe4 25.Qxe4

Also inaccurate was 23...Nh7 instead of taking on e4 but moves were in a big hurry.

Houdini_20_x64: 22/77 07:20 3,305,918,710
-0.47 23. ... Nxe4 24.Nxe4 Bxe4 25.Qxe4 Rac8 26.f6
-1.01 23. ... Nh7 24.f6 Ng6 25.Qg4 Rad8 26.fxg7+

After 25.fxg7+ instead of 25.Qg4 intermediate move black was still OK, this was part of second flurry too fast for me to be able to assess. Game was in fact nearly equal until 29...Bf7? black had 29...Bg8 or 29...Qc7 here for sufficient defense. 30.Ne4! winning was missed anyway after 30.Nd3 position evaluates as equal. But then 30...Kg8 (instead of 30...Rxd3 or 30...Qc7) was another mistake greatly compounded by 31.e4? time trouble blunder.

Oct-07-11  tivrfoa: why not: 30. ... Qxc3
maybe he could manage a draw with multiple checks.
Oct-07-11  DrMAL: <tivfoa> No, 30...Qxc3 is blunder 31.Bb2! and black loses, Q cannot move so best move is 31...Rxd3 to get B+N for Q.
Oct-07-11  Marmot PFL: Not sure if the computers accurately assess attacks like white has here or not. I think they often underestimate them due to horizon effects. In any case I have also lost many times like this in the Sicilian just because they are hard to play, even for someone as strong as Naka. Possibly 13...e5 improves, countering f5 with d5 or fe5 Nxe5 then Be6. This could be the best diagonal for the B, controlling the g4 & h3 squares, instead of the natural h1-a8 diagonal.
Oct-07-11  DrMAL: <Marmot PFL: Not sure if the computers accurately assess attacks like white has here or not.> Computer needs time to compute, but was not necessary here, position was not very complicated and lines were straightforward. I don't think this was (at all) difficult for Naka or any GM he just ran out of time.
Oct-07-11  Jambow: Nice play by Ivanchuk I expected a decline in the second half, perhaps getting mugged was just what he needed to keep him motivated. ;o]

Nakamura doesn't too often play the Sicilian as black and Ivanchuk is very universal and it showed. I thought 9... Qxc3+ was pretty straight forward and would have been far better.

Anyway kudos to Ivanchuk when he is on he is as dangerous as any player alive imho. This was the most one sided loss for Nakamura in a long while.

Oct-07-11  DrMAL: 9...Qxc3+ 10.Bd2 is positional sac giving white clear edge, Naka played 9...d6 to decline it was only equalizing move.

Declaring any GM does not know Sicilian extremely well is very silly, but declaring it for 2700+ chess genius Naka is absurd.

Oct-07-11  Jambow: <Declaring any GM does not know Sicilian extremely well is very silly, but declaring it for 2700+ chess genius Naka is absurd.>

Perhaps in context of playing against nearly 2800 elo players it becomes less absurd, while Nakaumra has plenty of games with the Sicilian he hasn't played it very often at the top levels of chess which is where he is now.

When he has it hasn't served him well either giving him his two most lopsides losses in years. Svidler beat him 2-0 with it, Carlsen 1-0 Radjabov 1/2-1/2 and Ivanchuk 1-0. Pretty dismal record 4.5 to .5 for a chess genius imho.

So if he were playing against (just any GM)I would say yes he knew it well by comparision and any GM would certainly know it well compared to a FM, yet clearly a 2500 GM doesn't know it well at all compared to an elite top ten GM like Ivanchuk.

Thank you for your curteous response and efforts to understand what was intended.

Oct-07-11  Jambow: Besides <not know the Sicilian extremely well> were your words not mine I said <doesn't to often play the Scicilian as black> which is very different just to clarify <DrMAL>
Oct-07-11  Jambow: <chancho: A technical Naka out> Lol spot on Chancho
Oct-07-11  DrMAL: <Jambow> Yes, my remark was general there were others during game writing Naka did not know Kan variation of Sicilian well enough. Just for grins here is computer eval after 9.Bxc3 showing 9...d6 as best this is part of theory, cheers.

Houdini_20_x64: 29/77 2:54:11 84,273,970,497
-0.02 9. ... d6 10.0-0 Nbd7 11.Ba3 b5 12.Qf3 Bb7
-0.33 9. ... b5 10.0-0 d6 11.a4 Bb7 12.Qe2 Nbd7
-0.43 9. ... Qxc3+ 10.Bd2 Qc6 11.Na5 Qa4 12.e5 Ne4
-0.58 9. ... e5 10.fxe5 Qxc3+ 11.Qd2 Qxe5 12.c4 d6

Oct-07-11  acirce: <Yes, my remark was general there were others during game writing Naka did not know Kan variation of Sicilian well enough.>

Well, that is certainly quite possible, since he has rarely played it. You're not an expert on a particular opening just because you are strong at chess in general.

Kramnik's experiment with the Najdorf didn't turn out well, neither did Kasparov's with the Berlin.

Oct-07-11  Jambow: <DrMAL> so as per Houdini there were at least two better moves than 9...Qxc3+/ 9...d6 and 9...b5 at least going 4 moves(8ply?)deep if I understand the jargon correctly. I don't normally use a computer to evaluate positions so bare with me and thank you.
Oct-07-11  DrMAL: <Janbow> Lines given were truncated, it was a deep computation that evaluated over 84 billion positions. It shows what I wrote. As far as idea about Naka and Sicilian goes only problem are the facts. Black chose Sicilian by playing 2...c5 and black chose Kan (Paulsen) variation by playing 4...a6 I doubt Naka was feeling masochistic in doing so, cheers.
Oct-08-11  wfarmia: great ivanchuk, i love ur winning
Oct-08-11  xanadu: The last comments of Ulhumbrus and Marmol PFL are very interesting. I think that moving away his King Bishop (and changed afterwards), Black eliminates a good defender of the Castle. Then,if the other Bishop is also moved away towards the a8-h1 diagonal, the Castle becomes very week, as indicated by Marmol PFL. This allows attack preparation by White, that must be refused by a central counter-attack, but Black must find a series of very precise moves, otherwise...we see the result!
Oct-08-11  abstract: Wow another chess boxing !!
Oct-08-11  xanadu: Ivanchuck-Radjabov in the World Cup 2011 was a Sicilian Dragon and Ivanchuck followed a similar strategy:weaken the pawn structure of Black Castle, then concentration of pieces at the opponent King´s side and finally advance of his own King´s pawns to destroy enemy castle-wall. Black must : 1) reserve pieces for defending the Castle (King´s Knight and Bishop) 2) make a rapid counter attack at the center.
3) the necessary previous condition for that is fast developing, without moving the same pieces several times in the opening. Connecting rooks is also important to defend last rank. Perhaps it is necessary to study how Anand plays Sicilian with Black.
Oct-08-11  DrMAL: With above posts made I will concede a key point regarding depth of opening preparation. I have been reluctant to refer to this area because it is easily misunderstood or misused, being applicable to high level play and hence beyond the level of most on this site. Subject refers to TNs made after deeply analyzing nuances of openings, usually near point of transition to middlegame. It is subject I mostly focus on in fact it is primary subject for masters to achieve ELO 2300 and beyond. Computers are invaluable for this and most of advanced chess is feeding computer ideas and looking at lines generated. For those interested, I will clarify this further via few examples starting with Kaufman vs D Gurevich, 2008 to be posted later today.
Oct-08-11  howlwolf: Looks like getting mugged just pissed Ivanachuk off.
Oct-08-11  Piewalker: I did a YouTube video on this game here:
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