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Viswanathan Anand vs Daniel Fridman
GRENKE Chess Classic (2013), Baden-Baden GER, rd 9, Feb-16
Russian Game: Classical Attack. Jaenisch Variation (C42)  ·  1-0

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Feb-16-13  Eyal: Tempting Black to take the a3 pawn with Ra2-e2 was a very nice tactical idea by Anand. After 22.Bg4! Black’s situation suddenly becomes very difficult – various threats involving Nf6+ are very strong; for example, 22...Bxg4 loses outright to 23.Nf6+! gxf6 24.Rxe8+ Rxe8 25.Qxg4+ Qxg4 26.Rxe8+ Kg7 27.hxg4 remaining an exchange up. Another line is 22...Re7 23.Nf6+ gxf6 24.Rxe7 Bxe7 25.Rxe7! (completely forced, actually) Qxe7 26.Bxf5 and here with his super-strong bishop pair and the weakness of Black king’s position White has a big advantage despite being an exchange down for the moment. Engine analysis suggests only a single good move for Black – 22...Be6.

The natural-looking 24...Rc8 loses to 25.Bd6!; on move 27, Nc4? just loses outright to the same move (after 28...Qxd6 29.Qxc4+ Kh7 white collects the trapped bishop on a3 with Ra1/a2 & Qb3). Black could have put up much tougher resistance with 27...fxe5 28.Rxe5 Qf7, and White has to be very accurate in order to keep an advantage: 29.Rf5 (29.Qxa3? Nc4) 29...Re7(!) 30.Ra1.

Another tactical point worth mentioning is that 25...Nc6, trying to get the knight back into the game, loses to 26.Qa4! (attacking both bishop & knight) 26...Nxe5 27.Ng3! and now the rook on d7 is in trouble.

This game is a good reminder that "boring" Petrov positions might hold a lot of potential dangers for Black. It takes the skills of a Kramnik to continually avoid (or diffuse) such dangers.

Feb-16-13  Eyal: Btw, on move 33 White had a more elegant finish with 33.Rxb6! axb6 34.Ne2 trapping the bishop (34...Rc7 35.Ra2 Bxc3 36.Rc2).
Feb-16-13  csmath: This game just shows that when your name is Fridman and you get in the position where Anand starts playing tactics with you then you are lost. The move 21. Rae2 must have been a surprise for Meier and yet he went for grabbing of a pawn even though he could not calculate well what after 22. Bg4 which I suspect was another surprise for him.
Feb-16-13  Eyal: <The move 21. Rae2 must have been a surprise for Meier>

Maybe - but I think he was concentrating mostly on the game he was playing with Naiditsch anyway...

Feb-16-13  csmath: Yup, I keep on mixing these two Germans (?) that are taigating there. Wait! Isn't that Naiditsch in their company as well? :-)
Feb-16-13  Eyal: I should add to the previous analysis that after 28.Bd6!!, if Black tries 28...Qxd6 29.Qxc4+ Qd5, then the poor bishop again gets trapped by 30.Qa4!:


click for larger view

since there's no good retreat square - on d6 it cuts communication between the black pieces and allows Qxd7, and on any other square it can be captured.

Feb-16-13  fetonzio: Bd6 blew my mind. A move that attacks queen and rook by leaving the bishop just hanging in the air. Of course, taking the bishop allows the immeadiate recover of the material with check, followed by a very unusual trapping of the stranded black bishop, caused by the blocking of its only available diagonal by its own queen, which got there while capturing white's piece. it's a lot to take in
Feb-16-13  Hesam7: It should be mentioned that Anand deviated from Akopian vs Kasimdzhanov, 2009 with 20 Ra2, Akopian played 20 Ng3 and the game ended in a draw after 41 moves.
Feb-16-13  Hesam7: Also Sakaev in his book on Petroff gives the following after 20 Ra2:

<20...Be6 21 Rae2 Nc4. The logical con­tinuation of the game might be 22 Nd2 (What else? White must try to clear the e-file.) 22...Nb6! 23 Qc2 (after 23 Bb7, Black equalizes with 23...c5!) 23...Bf5 24 Qb3 c5=>

It would be interesting to know what Anand had prepared for 20...Be6. Maybe 21 Rae2 Nc4 22 Ng3, for example 22...g6 23 Nh5 Ba3 24 Bh6 Bf8 25 Qc1


click for larger view

with an attack for White.

Feb-16-13  darshandatta: Maybe Anand had done deep preparation of this line as Gelfand likes playing petroff
Feb-16-13  Hesam7: <Eyal: Tempting Black to take the a3 pawn with Ra2-e2 was a very nice tactical idea by Anand. After 22.Bg4! Black�s situation suddenly becomes very difficult � various threats involving Nf6+ are very strong; for example, 22...Bxg4 loses outright to 23.Nf6+! gxf6 24.Rxe8+ Rxe8 25.Qxg4+ Qxg4 26.Rxe8+ Kg7 27.hxg4 remaining an exchange up. Another line is 22...Re7 23.Nf6+ gxf6 24.Rxe7 Bxe7 25.Rxe7! (completely forced, actually) Qxe7 26.Bxf5 and here with his super-strong bishop pair and the weakness of Black king�s position White has a big advantage despite being an exchange down for the moment. Engine analysis suggests only a single good move for Black � 22...Be6.>

Fridman's preparation was definitely not great (20 Ra2 was the new move and he made his first mistake two moves later 22...Rf8?) but after watching the video, Anand's preparation was also below his standards because 21 Rae2 does not prevent 21...Ba3.

After 22 Bg4, Black's position might be difficult in practical terms but objectively he has full equality, 22...Be6 is the only move but it is enough.


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For example: 23 Bh6 Bg4 24 Nf6 gf6 25 Re8 Re8 26 Re8 Kh7 27 Qe1 Kh6 28 Qe4 Kg7 29 Qa8 f5 30 hg4 fg4 31 Rh8 Bc1


click for larger view

And White does not seem to have anything here.

Feb-16-13  Hesam7: <darshandatta: Maybe Anand had done deep preparation of this line as Gelfand likes playing petroff>

I was hoping for Gelfand playing the Petroff, but I always thought that the chances of would be small.

Also 16...Be4 seems like the more modern response to 16 h3 but after Anand vs Kramnik, 2010 its reputation suffered (that game might have influenced Gelfand's preparation for the match).

Feb-17-13  csmath: <After 22 Bg4, Black's position might be difficult in practical terms but objectively he has full equality, 22...Be6 is the only move but it is enough.>

The problem with the "only moves" is that they are usually not so easy to find. Tempting opponent into tactics that you know he feels uncomfortable with is always a good idea. Anybody playing Petroff does not look to get tactics and when he gets exactly that it is usually very uncomfortable.

I commend Anand here for making it "up your face" since he knew that Fridman does not have Houdini. :-)

Feb-17-13  Hesam7: <csmath> couple of things:

1. When you are playing this line of Petroff where the game really begins on the 16th move (White has 10 different moves to choose from) and the first new move is the 20th, you should have found 22...Be6 at home. So fridman clearly failed in his preparation here.

2. I would recommend Sakaev's book on Petroff to anyone interested in this opening. I checked the analysis I posted here with an engine and it held up.

Feb-17-13  csmath: Fridman got hooked up on poison pill. That is not unusual. Kramnik took a poison pill from Anand in Petroff as well.

Vishy is extremely dangerous in surprising tactics, he shows that time and time again. Plus he is the best player in the world in open games.

As for Sakaev, I don't really care about his books. You can get databases and engine analyses. Houdini is better than anything Sakaev can come on his own. Chess book reading is only for beginners and if you need to read any then I suggest you get the reading from folks like Kasparov and Fischer.

Feb-17-13  csmath: The fundamentals of this game is that Anand offered surprising plan and Fridman got surprised, the game was decided in a few moves. It happened to Gelfand against Anand as well.

When folks get shocked into tactics most of players (of Fridman caliber) will get squirmy and will have trouble evaluating and finding proper tactics. I bet my bottom Fridman was all nervous during the moves.

Anand did exactly what a player of Anand caliber has to do - introduce surprise.

By the way I like the way Anand plays, I think he is very much underestimated nowadays. It is not going to be easy to beat him although I believe Magnus will do just that.

Feb-17-13  fgh: <csmath: Chess book reading is only for beginners>

From which it can be inferred that trolling forums is the favourite activity of advanced players such as yourself, right?

Feb-17-13  voyager39: Anand Draws - He's hiding preparation.

Anand Loses - He forgot his preparation.

Anand Wins - Its because of the preparation.

I wonder why some authors and commentators are hell bent on making preparation sound like an evil thing. Isn't it what every sportsperson is supposed to be doing?

Feb-19-13  Hesam7: <voyager39: Anand Draws - He's hiding preparation.

Anand Loses - He forgot his preparation.

Anand Wins - Its because of the preparation.

I wonder why some authors and commentators are hell bent on making preparation sound like an evil thing. Isn't it what every sportsperson is supposed to be doing?>

I am actually of the opinion that preparation is great, it advances opening theory. And my point was that Fridman's preparation was atrocious and Anand's was subpar (both observations are based on the game and the comments players made after the game).

Anand won because Fridman's preparation was much worse than his. The likes of Kramnik or Gelfand would have worked out 22...Be6 and much more (since it is a forced move) at home.

Mar-11-13  AnotherNN: Actually I thought White could have played 45.R(2)xN+, then 45...BxR 46.Ne5+ Kf6 47.RxB KxR 48.Nc6+.

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