Kenilworth Kibitzer

A blog for members of the Kenilworth Chess Club.

Monday, July 2, 2012


A Won Position?

The finest commentary on offer for the Anand-Gelfand world championship match was surely Sergey Shipov's usual witty, literary analysis, found amongst other places at Chess In Translation, where some underrecognized and insufficiently rewarded enthusiast translates Sergey's rather idiosyncratic Russian into English for our benefit.  An interesting moment came in Game 4 of the rapid tiebreaks, with Anand having the White pieces and needing only a draw to retain his title.  The following position was reached after the 12th move:

Here Shipov writes: 
A pleasant turn of events for Boris! It seems to me that he's got a dream position out of the opening. The two bishops are a real force in such an ending. Only Black can have winning chances here. Vishy clearly got carried away with the simplifications.

And in the game followed 13. b3 (and eventually Anand nevertheless drew), but Shipov had the following interesting comment about the alternative 13. dxc5:

An important point is that White doesn't have the right to exchange pawns on c5. In that case you'd get a classical position, known even in Steinitz's day. Almost won for Black.

Strong words!  And undoubtedly true at the highest levels.  But I wonder....put two 1800 players against each other in a G/30 and who comes out the winner?  Yes Black has the bishop pair but amongst club players a 'tricky' knight can be at least as good.  I bet 40/60 with Black slightly favored.  I'd be curious to play this position from either side this summer.  Any takers?


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