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Sergey Karjakin vs Viswanathan Anand
Tal Memorial (2013), Moscow RUS, rd 9, Jun-23
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation. Poisoned Pawn Accepted (B97)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-23-13  offramp: Well played! I don't think I've ever played through a Poisoned Pawn game I didn't like. They're almost always a bit hair-raising.
Jun-23-13  anandrulez: Its all forced .
Jun-23-13  Eyal: This line seems to be pretty much analyzed to death by now; sometimes they try to test each other's prep about some subtlety. From the chessbase report: <Anand knew everything there was to know in this variation of the poisoned pawn Najdorf, and was able to hold Karjakin to an unenventful draw as neither player really consumed much time on their clocks> (
Jun-23-13  Ulhumbrus: No-one plays the Sicilian Najdorf poisoned pawn variation as Black in order to draw. However White can may be able to choose a drawing line if he is satisfied with a draw

An alternative to 15...Bd6 is 15...Bc5 so that after 16 Nxe6 fxe6 17 Be2 0-0 White can't play 17 Qd4.

Jun-23-13  csmath: Poison pawn has become worse than Marshall Attack, it is just a proof that somebody has a good memory. I used to play this often as black and I do not remember losing any (apart from blitz) but also not much winning either. Everything splits into a draw in more or less forced fashion. It is amazing given how imbalanced it looks.

I started playing 7. ... h6 in blitz just to avoid "eager students" of this.

I wonder why would white player chose to play this else than for a draw.

Jun-23-13  Ulhumbrus: In my last message the word "can " should have been cut out
Jun-23-13  Eyal: Anand after the game: <Luckily I had checked this line a few days ago so I knew that this position is a draw. If you don't know the line it's almost impossible to find it at the board. (...) Here I reflected that this was one of the most ridiculous positions I can imagine. I mean, Black is not even sligthy lost looking, he looks completely busted! Castling with check, king g8, light squares, queen coming to g4, it looked completely busted except I happened to know it's drawn.> (
Jun-23-13  VaselineTopLove: Anand wanted to know if Karjakin knew this was drawn and was hoping he'd blunder and allow black to win, but obviously Karjakin knew :)

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