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Peter Svidler vs Magnus Carlsen
Norway Chess (2014), Stavanger NOR, rd 8, Jun-12
English Opening: King's English Variation. Three Knights System General (A27)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 12 OF 12 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jun-12-14  DaringSpeculator: <ajile: <DaringSpeculator:> Maybe but Houdini was showing only (+.38) after Rg8+.>

I just checked with Houdini4. After you play 32Rg8+, the engine evaluation changes to +1.39 @25ply!

Jun-12-14  ajile: <DaringSpeculator: <ajile: <DaringSpeculator:> Maybe but Houdini was showing only (+.38) after Rg8+.>

I just checked with Houdini4. After you play 32Rg8+, the engine evaluation changes to +1.39 @25ply!>

Wow so White could have won this game?


Jun-12-14  Ulhumbrus: Short suggested that Carlsen may thought at one point that <it had to be a win> but that it wasn't. He had to be careful even when his position seemed overwhelming. Most of the time of course he is.
Jun-12-14  Marmot PFL: 33...Nd6 preventing Rc8+ should keep some chances for black.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Tournamentwise quite a disappointment for Carlsen. But fine for us last-round spectators. ;)
Jun-12-14  john barleycorn: <chessdgc2: Svid inviting 33...Qxf3 34. Rf1 Qc3+ 35. Bd2 +!! and White would win!>

33....Qxf3 34.Bh6+

Premium Chessgames Member
  beenthere240: I thought Svidler's 24 Qb5 showed a lot of guts, since it put the queen in position for a counter attack on d7 f Carlsen ever let up on the pressure -- which of course he did -- and on the very next move!
Jun-12-14  notyetagm: Svidler vs Carlsen, 2014

Wow, I went to lunch expecting to return to <0-1> and instead find a draw!

Boy is Magnus gonna be pissed tonight.

Jun-12-14  SirRuthless: Wow. Stockfish is finding ways to win for white if Svidler Goes Rg8 -R1g7+ idea.
Jun-12-14  john barleycorn: <22. Qb3 Rxe4 It is time to call it a day...>

GM A. Delchev commenting on
He must have been hit by a stroke as there are no more comments from him after that move. To be honest, I do not like his style.

Jun-12-14  Strelets: 24...Nxf2+! 25.Bxf2 Rxe2 and Black would have been virtually winning. Something must be wrong with Carlsen. It's not like him to miss combinations like that.
Jun-12-14  john barleycorn: <Strelets> maybe this time he did not sleep at all.
Jun-12-14  Ulhumbrus: At the price of repetition Short indicated that when Carlsen chose to sacrifice a rook he have have missed a brilliant defence. When Carlsen chose 24..Rf8xf4? he may have seen too late that after 25 Bf4 Nf2+ 26 Kg2 Re2 27 Kf1 Qxf3 White had the brilliant defence 28 Rg3!!
Jun-12-14  csmath: 4. d3 [passive. Svidler spent 10+ minutes on this move, obviously surprised in the opening.]

4. ...Nf6
[And we get Three Knights reverse Sicilian Grandprix.] 5. g3 Bb4
[Svidler is playing typical English setup even though this is obviously aggressive reverse Sicilian.]

9. ...Qe8
[This is all very well known and good for black.]

click for larger view

10. Qb3?!
[pointless move.]
10. ...b6
11. Nh4 Na5
12. Qa3?
[Svidler is playing on a7 pawn? Without noticing precarious position of his king.]

12. ...Rb8
13. Be3?

[This is a losing move, inviting f4. It was a time to bring queen back with 13. Qb2 and admit errors with previous queen moves.]

13. ...f4

click for larger view

Here white is strategically lost.

15. ...Bh3!
[removing important defender of the white king.]

17. ...Rbe8!

[Simple powerful moves increasing firepower toward white king.]

18. Qb2
[Finally but it is too late. White needs to defend e2.]

click for larger view

18. ...e4!

19. Ng5?!

[19. Ng1 Ng5 20. Qb5 c5! 21. d4 Nh5 and white position is also falling apart. This is still better.]

19. ...Qh5
20. dxe4?!
[20. Rg1 exd3 21. exd3 h6! is more resistant though it also loses.]

20. ...Ng4
21. Nf3 Nc4
22. Qb3 Rxe4
23. Rg1 d5
24. Qb5

[last minute fishing since white is completely lost.]

click for larger view

24. ...Rfxf4?

[Throwing win through the window. The easiest was:
24. ...Nxe3
25. fxe3 Nf2+
26. Kf2 Nh3

and black gets the exchange since black is threatening Rxe3 with complete collapse of white defence. After getting the exchange black can even proceed into ending where exchange down and with broken pawns white has no chance of survival.]

27. Kf1

click for larger view

27. ...Ne4
[And here Carlsen realized that 27. ...Qxf3
28. Rg3! (the move Carlsen overlooked) Qe4
29. Qd7
he only has a forced perpetual. The win is gone.]

28. Rxg7! Kf8?!
[28. ...Kxg7 29. Qd7+ Qf7 30. Qg5 and black has a difficult task to try to exchange the queens. Here there is still some hope of a win. Carlsen throws that away as well although this is not obvious at all.]

31. Rbg1
[It is amazing that has such a control of the position that the game is fully equalized, according to engines.]

31. ...Nc3

click for larger view

32. Rxc7?!
[32. Rg8+ Kf7 33. R1g7+ Kf6 34. Rxc7 Ne4 and all of a sudden the position gets completely wild and according to engine into white's favor.]

Few more moves and seriously down on time both decided to call it quits.


Horrible opening play by Svidler, very hard error by Carlsen when it was just a matter of few moves to finish the game in his favor.

Jun-12-14  NeoIndian: Svidler: 10.Qb3 "I completely forgot that b6 is a legal move. (!?)"

Later..."Please don't force us to talk too much about this!"

Gotta love this guy. He goes slightly bonkers once in a while, but...

Jun-12-14  talwnbe4: Just a quick analysis reveals 24.. Rexf4 was 2.1, or 24.. Rxe3 was 2.7, 24.. Nxe3 ( 4.1) was also maybe even stronger than 24..Nxf2
Jun-13-14  talwnbe4: even 24.. Na3 doesn't look too bad. Probably the simplest win, if not objectively the best. 24..Na3 25. Qd7 Nxb1 26. Rxg4 Qf7 27. Qb5 Nxc3
Jun-13-14  Ulhumbrus: Svidler gained a disadvantage perhaps because he kept his e and f pawns back.

After 7...0-0 one question is how White can manage to advance his e and f pawns and another question is how White can make his pawns an asset instead of a liability.

One idea is 8 d4 e4 9 Ne1 followed by Ne1-c2-e3-d5.

Another idea is 8 Nd2 Qe8 9 e4

A third idea is to arrange the pawn advance c5, even if as a pawn sacrifice. Kasparov may have played the advance c5 at least once, but perhaps another opening eg in the game Kasparov vs Karpov, 1985

Jun-16-14  Robyn Hode: The game is never over till csmath says it is. :)
Jul-20-14  1d410: Won't believe in 32 Rg8+ until I see the correct variations. Computers are not reliable.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: The dramatic game is analyzed in detail by GM Kuljasevic:
May-11-15  pinoy king: This is an example of Carlsen's abhorrent tactics. Most 1500s in blitz would win this position. This is why no super GMs think Carlsen is that strong.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <pinhead king: This is an example of Carlsen's abhorrent tactics. Most 1500s in blitz would win this position. This is why no super GMs think Carlsen is that strong.>

Yeah, they all believe he is 2600 at best.

May-12-15  pinoy king: Tactically speaking - in other words his raw calculatin ability is no better than a generic 2700 GM. This is why no one praises Carlsen as anything other than a consistent pampered player.
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: In a banterthon video, Svidler cited this game as the worst position he ever saved against a GM.
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