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Levon Aronian vs Viswanathan Anand
Bilbao Masters (2014), Bilbao ESP, rd 6, Sep-20
Queen's Gambit Declined: Ragozin Defense (D38)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Sep-20-14  htjsparta: 43. e4 is a cute obstruction. In case anyone can't see it, White responds to 43. ... ♕xe4 with

44. ♖h8+ ♔g6
45. ♕e8+ ♔f6 (♔f5 46. ♕xh5+ and ♕xd1)
46. ♖f8+ ♔e5
47. ♕xh5+ and ♕xd1, picking up the rook.

Sep-20-14  Ke2: 37... Qf6? Missing 37... Rd1+ 38. Kh2 Qd5 39. Qg4+ Kh7 40. e4 (forced) Qd2 With ideas of Qe1 and better drawing chances. If 41. Kh3, Rh1+ 42. Kg2 Rh2+! draws instantly. If 41. Rf8, Qe1 42. Qf3 =.

(Disclaimer: Computer pointed out most of this to me, Anand is smarter than all of us)

Sep-20-14  devere: 46...Rc1 47.Qg5+ Kf7 48.Qxh5+ Ke7 49.Qg5+ Kf7 50.Qf4+ and checkmate follows

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Sep-20-14  csmath: It shows that even world champion has hard time to handle major piece ending. This was by error but this kind of ending can turn on a dime and nobody is immune against such errors.
Sep-20-14  cro777: <Ke2: 37... Qf5? Missing 37... Rd1+>

Yes, Anand could have forced a draw by playing 37...Rd1+! followed by ...Qd5 instead of 37...Qf5.

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37...Rd1+ 38.Kh2 Qd5

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39.Qg4+ (39.e4 Qd3) Kh7 40.e4 Qd2 41.Kh3 (41.Kg2? Qe1) Rh1+ 42.Kg2 Rh2+ 43.Kxh2 Qxf2+

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: As <csmath> astutely noted, none of us is clean--a great player faltered in an inferior, but ultimately defensible ending, with a last saving chance illustrated by <cro777>.

So far as <u>'s long-winded summation, yawn.........

Sep-21-14  Ulhumbrus: Anand's loss in this game may be a blessing in disguise. Perhaps more than any other recent game it is this game which Anand is advised to examine closely in order to help prepare himself for the coming match. In the position after 22 Re4 Black has an isolated e6 pawn and from this alone one may think mistakenly that Black has easy equality.

Nothing could be further from the truth. The e6 pawn is not Black's only weakness. In addition to the e6 pawn Black has in fact no less than four weaknesses: the g6 square, the e4 square, the seventh rank and the eighth rank.

Black is in fact in serious trouble and has to be very careful to avoid defeat.

Black's pieces are tied to the defence of the e6 pawn and cannot keep Aronian's heavy pieces out of the other four weaknesses. After Aronian occupies the last weakness- the back rank- Anand is lost.

It may be that for Black's moves after 22 Re4 the moves suggested by the computer place tiny little difficulties in the way of White's prospects for attack upon Black's five (!!) weaknesses, namely, the e6 pawn, the g6 square, the e4 square, the seventh rank and the eighth rank.

Anand can hardly do better than examine the computer's suggestions for Black's moves after 22 e4. in order to search for and find the REASONS WHY the computer's moves place tiny little difficulties in the way of White's prospects for attack upon Black's five weaknesses

If Anand can go over these with a toothpick he will need every ounce of additional knowledge and skill which he can extract from the examination if he is to defend such positions against Carlen at the coming match in Sochi.

Thus Aronian may have given Anand a most valuable parting gift, providing Anand is able and willing to make use of the present.

The chances based upon ratings will favour Carlsen of course, but there is no reason why Anand should not try to improve his chances by means of such a close examination.

Sep-21-14  MarkFinan:

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I couldn't see the losing move here, i went through the game on this site and I couldn't see where Anand went wrong so I let Stockfish look and I've never seen it go from 10 plys to a 100 plys with the eval at 0.00 so fast. It only considers one move here 33...kf7 yet when the move is played the eval tips to +0.80 in whites favour!? I don't understand it at all!

Sep-21-14  Ke2: It's some kind of glitch with 3fold repetition <Mark>.
Sep-21-14  MarkFinan: <Ke2: It's some kind of glitch with 3fold repetition <Mark>.>

Thanks Samuel L.. I thought it must be something like that but I did think an engine would be able to see past that kinda thing nowadays. I still think Anand played okay though, I guess he was playing for a draw but one bad move at this level and?? Curtains. ✌

Sep-23-14  KingchecksQueen: 40)....h5 is the losing move ladies and gentlemen.
Sep-23-14  KingchecksQueen: Black's h-pawn was supposed to be latch on h6 to serve as a fortress for his king.
Sep-23-14  anandrulez: Did time control play a part in this game ? Some of the ideas like Qe7 instaed of Kf6 and probably even Rd1+ seems not to hard especially since that is the ONLY counter chances worth a try . Passive defence usually don't work out in such positions. Any thoughts ?

Even in the 2013 WC Game 5 , Anand didn't counter attack with Ra1 , he went Rc1 which gave up a tempi . I mean Anand does not seem to not counter attach like he used to in his formative years . He used to generate counter ideas to quite brilliantly and he even has some evens from lost positions .

Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: In the final position after 46. e4!, should he not resign, Black's best try appears to be 46...Rc4 (diagram below).

click for larger view

From here, Fritz finds mate-in-eight with 47. Qg5+ Kf7 48. Rh7! Ke8 (48... Rg4 49. Rxg7+ Kf8 50. Qe7#) 49. Qxg7 Rxh4+ 50. gxh4 Kd8 51. Qe7+ Kc8 52. Rh8+ Qe8 53. Rxe8#.

Sep-24-14  Ke2: <KingchecksQueen: 40)....h5 is the losing move ladies and gentlemen.> That's a wild assumption. I'd guess you'd play Re7 and then allow the cramping on 41. h5?

Like I posted earlier, the computer reveals the biggest error in the endgame was 37... Qf6 missing some drawing tricks with 37... Rd1.

Also, 41... Qc6?! is true desperation, going for tricks rather than suffering dutifully with say 41... Qd3 or Re7.

This game is interesting because it will be Anand's last before the WCC match. And it highlights his main weakness versus Carlsen - suffering for a draw in slightly worse endgames with no counterplay.

Sep-25-14  KingchecksQueen: <Ke2> Without further analyzing, I just did not like h5. I was more concern on the principle of chess regarding fortress.
Premium Chessgames Member
  guenther42: Levon Aronian gets zero comment? The silence is deafening. Was Aronian not relentless and precise? After Anand missed 37...Rd1+ we are treated to a flawless finish. Gorgeous stuff, no? Kudos to two great 'universal' players.

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