When an elite player is an acknowledged authority in an opening, playing it against him is usually not a wise idea, as Black finds out in the following game.
Playing the Caro-Kann against Viktor Laznicka, a Czech grandmaster, is a very risky decision, as he is one of the world’s leading proponents of the defense. In this game, he demonstrates that he is quite comfortable playing the other side as well.
Laznicka, V. vs. Swapnil, SD.
6th HD Bank Cup 2016 |Ho Chi Minh City VIE |Round 3.2 |09 Mar 2016 |ECO: B12 |1-0
1. e4c62. d4d53. e5c5
( 3... Bf5This is more common, aiming for a strategic game.
The text is a more direct way to try to equalize )
4. dxc5Nc65. Nf3Bg4
( 5... e6Is also possible 6. Bd3Bxc57. a3And, in my opinion, White is a little
6. Bb5Qa5+7. Nc3e68. Bd2Qc79. b4!Saving the right pawn. The
White queenside pawn mass will become a problem for Black in the near future. 9... Bxf3
( 9... a5This was also possible, aiming to go after the queenside pawns
instead. But, White would have a pleasant choice between two good options: 10. O-O!I like this more than the sedate a3 ...axb411. Na4Eschewing
all things positional for rapid development. White will quickly be able to play Bxb4 and
Nb6, giving him a strong initiative )
10. gxf3!?A very interesting
decision. I think Laznicka wanted to keep the rook on a1 protected
( 10. Qxf3a5Wwhite cannot reply a3, which is possibly why Laznicka took with the
pawn. But, White is better if he plays for the initiative 11. O-Oaxb412. Na4 )
10... Qxe5+11. Qe2Qxe2+12. Nxe2The computer thinks Black is fine here, and even offers him a slight edge in its evaluations.
But, I think this is very misguided -- the White queenside pawn mass will mobilize quickly 12... Be713. Nd4!A very strong exchange sacrifice 13... Bf6
( 13... Kd7In light of how the game went, this could have been a decent alternative )
14. Nxc6Bxa115. Ke2a616. Ba4Bf617. Na5+Kf818. Nxb7White's pawns will
soon be too difficult to control. Note how ineffective the Black rooks are and that
the fractured kingside pawn structure cannot be attacked. 18... Ne719. Rc1!Another strong move: White prepares c4 19... Nf520. c4dxc421. Rxc4Be522. f4Bc723. Bc2Rb824. Be4Ne725. c6Finally the computer comes around to
understanding White's idea. Nc5 is looming and Black is in big trouble 25... Nd5Probably the best try in a bad position. Black is unable to activate the h8
( 25... f6?26. Nc5Wins immediately )
( 25... f526. Bf3Kf727. Nc5And White is much better )
26. Bxd5exd527. Rc5!
( 27. Rd4?This natural
looking move would be a big mistake because of 27... Re8+28. Kd3Re6!Winning the c6 pawn and changing the course of the game )
27... d428. Rd5!Well calculated. White goes in for the kill with Rd7 28... Re8+29. Kd3Re6For a moment, it looks as if White has blundered, but he was clearly ready: 30. b5!axb531. Bb4+Kg832. Bd6
( 32. Rd8+!This pretty move was a bit more
precise, but Laznicka's move definitely wins so I see no reason to criticize it. 32... Bxd8 )
32... h633. f5!Getting in a useful advance before taking the
bishop 33... Rf634. Bxc7Rxc635. Ba5Kh736. Rxb5!Taking the correct pawn -- now
White has a passed pawn. The rest requires no comment 36... Rb837. a3Rc138. Nd6Ra839. Bb4Rd1+40. Ke2Rh141. Rb7f642. Re7Rxh243. Ne8d3+44. Kxd3Rxf245. Nxg7Kh846. Ke3Rf147. Ke2Rf448. Bd6Rd449. Ne8Rg450. Nxf6Rg751. Re6Rg552. Re7Rg753. Re5Rf754. Ne4Kg755. Ke3Rc856. Bc5Rb857. Bb4Rd858. Nd6Ra759. Re6Kh760. f6Kg661. f7+Kg762. Re8
Samuel Shankland is a United States grandmaster ranked No. 7 in the country. He is a professional player and recipient of the Samford Fellowship in 2013, the most prestigious award in the United States for young chess players. He is at @GMShanky on Twitter and is also on Facebook.
FIDE and World Chess announces today that the 2018 World Chess Championship Match will take place in London in November 2018. The world’s most prestigious chess tournament is to be the climax of a season of high-profile activity to extend the sport’s appeal among global audiences – and make 2018 the Year of Chess in the UK.
After 9 days of intense chess battles at the last leg of the World Chess Grand Prix series 2017 in Palma de Mallorca, the two winners of the series were finally determined: Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (Azerbaijan, overall 340 points in the series) and Alexander Grischuk (Russia, 336,4 points). They qualified for the Candidates Tournament – the next part of the World Chess Championship cycle, which leads up to the Championship match.
The sole leader of the Palma de Mallorca Grand Prix Levon Aronian made a quick draw with Evgeny Tomashevsky today, inviting the group of rivals to join him at the top. But same as in the previous rounds all games on the top boards finished peacefully and not a single player came close to catching up with him.
After seven rounds Aronian is in the lead with 4,5 points. A group of 8 players is half a point behind, including Vachier-Lagrave. In order to qualify for the Candidates, the Frenchman needs to win at least one more game. Boris Gelfand defeated Alexander Riazantsev, Pavel Eljanov won against Jon Ludvig Hammer, while Teimour Rajabov outplayed Li Chao. After the victory the Azerbaijani Grandmaster still hopes to qualify, but in that case has to win both games.
Javier Ochoa, Honorary FIDE Vice President and President of the Spanish Chess Federation, made the first symbolic move to start the fourth round, which turned out to be the most exciting round of the tournament so far, with six decisive games out of nine.
In the Third Round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Palma de Mallorca games between the four leaders, Vachier-Lagrave-Aronian and Rajabov-Giri, finished in a draw. Peter Svidler joined the group of leaders by beating Jon-Ludvig Hammer in the third round.
The world’s best chess players and chess establishment came together in Bellver Castle to celebrate the opening of the final leg of the FIDE 2017 World Chess Grand Prix Palma de Mallorca – a prestigious qualifier for the World Chess Candidates Tournament.
Katerina Lagno, one of the strongest Russian women-grandmasters won the historic Moscow Blitz Tournament, beating her fellow Russian Olympic team members Alexandra Kosteniuk, Valentina Gunina and Olga Girya.
After a draw against Ian Nepomniachtchi, Teimur Rajabov won the tournament. One of the strongest players, Rajabov had not won a major tournament lately, but has shown phenomenal form in Geneva and managed to overpower some of top world’s players