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Sergey Karjakin vs Levon Aronian
Tata Steel Masters (2017), Wijk aan Zee NED, rd 7, Jan-21
Italian Game: Italian Variation (C50)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jan-21-17  Marmot PFL: After 500 years the Italian (3 Bc4) is still a topical opening, three games today.
Jan-21-17  Marmot PFL: Was 11 c4 winning a piece? 11...Ndb4 12 c5 Bxb3 13 Qxb3+ and then cxb6.
Jan-21-17  Big Pawn: Looks winning to me. Good catch!
Jan-21-17  Marmot PFL: 11 d4 also gives white the advantage because of the loose Be6. Just a bad day for Aronian.
Jan-21-17  fisayo123: Unbelievable tactical oversight from Karjakin. His tactical strength is one of his weak spots in my humble opinion which is curious since he used to be a fairly good tactician in his younger years..For instance 39. Qb3 instead of 39. Bxh7?! in game 9 of the WCC match and the story might be diffeent.

It's what happens when you over do the super-solid "berlin vs everything 1. e4" style chess from a young age and essentially become a drab player to watch. Still this was an impressive game in his trademark style.

Jan-21-17  notyetagm: Karjakin vs Aronian, 2017

<Marmot PFL: Was 11 c4 winning a piece? 11...Ndb4 12 c5 Bxb3 13 Qxb3+ and then cxb6.>

Svidler on the chess24 live broadcast was shocked that Aronian allowed it and then Karjakin missed it.



Jan-22-17  Big Pawn: <Svidler on the chess24 live broadcast was shocked that Aronian allowed it and then Karjakin missed it.>

It's interesting, isn't it? It gives us some insight into the nature of blunders. Surely, these two top level grandmasters can easily spot a winning tactic like that, but they both missed it here.

I think this says something about the mindset of the players during that moment of the game. That is, their heads were somewhere else. They were in the groove of thinking in a different way. Perhaps, in the backs of their minds, they were thinking (without noticing they were thinking) that there were no tactics here yet because it was still the opening of a very quiet, very well trodden opening.

It's like when you're playing blitz and you are set on winning the opponent's queen and totally miss that you could mate him in one.

Another thing to consider is how we would judge this if the date was changed to 1850 and the names were changed. We would say that the old players aren't that good and that no top player today would miss that.

Jan-22-17  john barleycorn: I think Anand put it best when he said something like <if you do not expect a gift you do not look for one>.
Jun-17-17  GiuocoPianoMan: Or Magnus quote from the WC press conference, "Look, chess is hard!"

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