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Fabiano Caruana vs Hikaru Nakamura
World Championship Candidates (2016), Moscow RUS, rd 8, Mar-20
Spanish Game: Berlin Defense (C65)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Mar-20-16  Eyal: The basic approach is not a one-off, it's becoming trendy lately - Anand vs A Giri, 2015, Caruana vs Karjakin, 2016, Wei Yi vs Navara, 2016. Not that the 4.d3 lines are necessarily so quiet and drawish in general - look at Anand - Topalov & Caruana-Giri from this tournament.
Mar-20-16  Everett: The Berlin, especially with 4.d3, is so rich it is ridiculous. The reason why it is played so much now is that there is still undiscovered territory here.

<ar-20-16 mrbasso: What should he do? The computer suggestion 20...Kh8 doesn't look convincing either. Probably you have to improve earlier. 17...Kh8 or 18...g6 are candidates.>

You are likely right. Black likely needs to sit on his a and b pawns and clean house around his K first.

Mar-20-16  Everett: I think the doubled c-pawns suck. Anything blow-up after 12..c5 knowing that Black can still cover d5 with ..c6? This serves to inhibit d4 from White, and after ..Ra6 can give a lot more flexibility to Black's q-side play.
Mar-20-16  activechess55: <rainingpieces: Castling queenside seems to give some attacking chances for White.> < northernfox: Do you guys think that this anti-Berlin approach by Caruana, including the 0-0-0 may be an indication of a generally useful path against the Berlin for W players who are not happy with a quiet, probably drawn, game ? > I concur with you two. Caruana's q-side castle concept spice up this dull and boring Berlin defence. It doubtless is double-edged, but gives opportunity for ambitious players to try for win. God bless Caruana !
Mar-20-16  Mudphudder: I don't think any of these candidates will in the end beat Carlsen. But between the two players that have the best chances (Aronian and Caruana, in my opinion) I think Aronian will definitely give Carlsen the better run for his money.
Mar-20-16  SirRuthless: I don't. Aronian is not nearly as stout in defense as Caruana and Caruana has a better record V. Carlsen over the past few years. I think both will lose over 12 games but at least Caruana might take a game or two although in the end losing is losing. I think Aronian is a great ambassador for the game but might not even take one game v. Carlsen. This is his third Candidates already and he can be as equally shaky as he is brilliant. Aronian is also older and Carlsen will drag the games into the 7th hour on a regular basis where Aronian's issues will surface in the endgame. Caruana is just tougher defensively.
Mar-21-16  dynamica: After move 14.Be3 better
14.......c5 if 15.e3 15..... Ng8
if 16.Nh4 Be6
17.Kb1 c6
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: nak went down like a lead Zeppelin.
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: nak went down like a lead Zeppelin.
Mar-21-16  saintdufus: <SirRuthless: Neither of them has a chance in hell.> On the contrary, Caruana is right on the heels of the leaders. His undefeated +1 score gives him good chances of winning the event.
Mar-21-16  Sokrates: <whiteshark: GM <Jan Gustafsson> shows the Game of the Day: Enjoy!> Many thanks for this great reference. What an erudite, precise, no-nonsense analysis by Gustafsson. Can you tell what site it is part of? Thanks in advance.
Mar-21-16  MCDreamz: Board 1 vs board 3. Board 1 wins. No surprises here.

Naka go home!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Video analysis of this game:
Mar-21-16  Eyal: <Sokrates: What an erudite, precise, no-nonsense analysis by Gustafsson. Can you tell what site it is part of? Thanks in advance.>

It's chess24 [the fact that he starts the video with "What's up guys, this is Jan for chess24" might have tipped you off:-)]. If you like his game recaps, you can find all of them in their youtube channel -

Mar-21-16  rogge: <<Sokrates: What an erudite, precise, no-nonsense analysis by Gustafsson> Absolutely. He's the best, imho.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: Hi northernfox:

"Do you guys think that this anti-Berlin approach by Caruana, including the 0-0-0 may be an indication of a generally useful path against the Berlin."

4.d3 was played in the time of Anderssen.

It's a tried and trusted path. I picked this method of playing up from an article in BCM or CHESS in the late 70's/early 80's and it served me very well since then.

It's a pseudo Delayed Exchange Variation - in the delayed you wait after 3...a6 4.Ba4 for 4...Nf6 then chop on c6. (Black does not have f6 defences to his e-pawn).

If Black plays 3...Nf6, as they very often did after Kasparov - Kramnik (the Lemming effect) then you chop on c6 right away.

So what good is it to the likes of us bottom feeders. (they rest is for layman chess players, free spirited open-minded players and in general hackers.)

You avoid ten tons of theory and just have a plan. (it's also for lazy players.)

This is the pawn formation.

click for larger view

The Black a-pawn is on a6 or a7.

I delayed 0-0-0 as long as possible and sometimes never 0-0-0. if a check on b4 I slipped the King to f1.

You then throw your kingside at Black, open a file, sink a Knight on f5, sac something and mate.

On no circumstances, no not never do move that c2 pawn. Black then gets play down open d-file v d3.

G.Chandler - P.Roberts, Edinburgh League 1990

Have to submit this - there is a Monday/Tuesday trick in there.

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. Bxc6 dxc6 6. d3 Bc5 7. Nc3 O-O 8. Bg5 Re8 9. Qd2 Bg4 10. h3 Bd7 11. g4 b5 12. Rg1 Bf8 13. Ne2 Qe7 14. Ng3 g6 15. Nf5 gxf5 16. gxf5 Kh8 17. Bh4 Bg7 18. Rxg7 Kxg7 19. Qg5+ Kh8 20. Qxf6+ Qxf6 21. Bxf6+ Kg8 22. Kd2 Kf8 23. Rg1 h6 24. Rg7 Bxf5 25. exf5 Rec8 26. Rh7 Ke8 27. Nxe5 1-0.

Mar-21-16  Mudphudder: Ruthless: I don't know where I read it, but Carlsen did once state in an interview that he had the most trouble playing Aronian out of all of the top 10 grandmasters.

In my opinion, Caruana seems to be more likely to screw up a won position. Whereas when Aronian gets a winning edge he will always deliver.

Mar-21-16  Ulhumbrus: 5 Bxc6 concedes the bishop pair

9...Bd6 relinquishes the bishop pair. Instead of this 9...Bf8 keeps it.

11...a5 begins a pawn attack. However instead of this 11...c5 frees the c7 pawn to advance.

14...Nc5 obstructs the c6 pawn. Instead of this 14...c5 frees the c7 pawn

After 20...a3 Black's pawn attack is not supported by Black's heavy pieces while White can bring quickly a rook to the g file. Instead of this 20...Kh8 frees Black's queen to go to b8 to be followed by ...Qb4 and ...Rb8 Even then Bc1 defends b2 with the minimum of force.

Mar-22-16  posoo: LOLOL ducbunway, ANY foole knows dat "droll" can be a cumploment OR an insult dapending on da CONTEXT.

"But you're too dumb to know that?"

Who would EVER resort to such ad hommanem stuff?!?!

lolol drol.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Who would EVER resort to such ad hommanem (sic) stuff?!?!>

Sez <poopoo>, who adores it.

Mar-22-16  RookFile: I appreciate <Sally Simpson's> summary of white's goals in this variation. It gives an excellent overview.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Yes, <Geoff>'s piece is well done and a reminder to all of us who are not 2500+ that all we should be after is an opening which will lead to a playable middlegame.
Mar-28-16  posoo: Look CAREFUL porfoodus. posoo NEVER resorts to da ad hommanem attax! Unless u consider misspelling ur foole name on purpose just to annoy u AD HOMANEM.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Nah, I just consider u a foole.
Aug-20-22  thegoodanarchist: 'Karu Wreck
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