GM Mikhail Golubev  annotates games

Round 3


Volokitin – Harikrishna

A long theoretical line of the Ruy Lopez (the Open Variation with 5…Nxe4). Volokitin made a rare move 19.Bxg5 and obtained a small but stable advantage in the position with the opposite coloured bishops. On the 28th move White won a pawn. After the long struggle White has managed to win one more pawn (Black’s mistake was 67…Ke8). Afterwards, as it seems, White missed a win somewhere along the way. Maybe he could try 72.g4!? (Volokitin). 0,5-0,5


Bologan – Nisipeanu

Nisipeanu opted for the Blumenfled Gambit 4…b5!?. He used it twice in 2005, so it hardly could have been a surprise for Bologan. Instead of 5.Bg5, what was played by the Nisipeanu’s  opponents, Bologan decided to grab the pawn by 5.dxe6, what also occurs often in practice. Bologan’s new move 11.Bg5 does not seem to be extremely successful. White spent a lot of time for his 14th move. (Instead of Bologan’s 14.Rc1, not so good was 14.Nxd5 exd5 15.Qxd5+ Kh8 16.Qxc6 Bxe2 17.Rfe1 Bxf3 18.Bxf3 Qxf3 19.Qxd6 Qxf2+ 20.Kh1 where Black could have had more than a draw by 20…Qf3+.)  White managed to obtain some advantage, but the draw looked as the most probable result until Nisipeanu made a mistake and lost his g-pawn on the 42nd move. 1-0


Rublevsky – Ponomariov

The opponents, as it is expected, will play a candidate’s match each against other later this year. For the moment, they meet each other in Foros. Rublevsky’s choice could not surprise anyone: the Scotch Game. On 12th move Ponomariov opted for 12…Rhe8 instead of the more acute 12…Nb4, but did not manage to equalise. After the exchange of queens, White’s chances are somewhat better because the minor black pieces are passive. On the 21st move Ponomariov refused to win the pawn by 21...Rxf4. Indeed, it looks dangerous for Black: 22.Re8+ (probably stronger than 22.c5 Rf2!) 22...Kb7 23.Ne4 (threatening with 24.Nc5 mate) 23…d6 24.a4 Rh4 25.Bf5 Rxh2+ 26.Kc3. But in the game things were not easy for Black, too. White preserved his dangerous f-pawn, which later costed Black a whole piece. 1-0


Shirov - Karjakin

The Queen’s Indian. On 16th move Karjakin deviated from the Round 1 game versus Bologan, which he lost. 16…Rb8 (16…c5 was Bologan-Karjakin) 17.Bf1 and now Black made a new move 17…Bb4 (17…Nb6 18.Nc5 Bb5 19.a4 Nd5 Macieja – Carlsen, Turin 2006 and now 20.Ba5!! would have been very strong). After 18.Qd2 Qa5 19.Bxb4 Qxb4 20.Qf4 Shirov’s position looked promising. 20…Rad8 and Shirov played 21.Rab1!? (instead of the more obvious 21.Rac1). Probably Black should have played 21…Qb6 (instead of 21…Qa3). Shirov planned 22.bxc4! Qxd4 23.Red1, etc. In the game, after 25.Nb3! Black was already in the deep trouble. 25…Qxa2?! 26.Qe3! Rb8 27.Nd2! led him to material losses. A very good victory by Shirov. 1-0


Areshchenko – Mamedyarov

The Bishop's Opening 1.e4 e5 2.Bc4, a rare choice by White! After 16.Qd2 it became clear that White obtained a certain advantage. Instead of 19.d5 deserved attention 19.Ba4. After the game Areshchenko criticised his 28th move, while his assistant GM Kuzubov opined that trading of bishops on the 20th move already was an inaccuracy. In the further play Mamedyarov managed to develop the initiative on the kingside step by step. Black finished the game by direct attack, which was prepared by the brilliant move 42…Qf4!. 0-1


Ivanchuk - Grischuk

In the Anti-Marshall on 10th move Grischuk deviated from his previous encounter with Ivanchuk (Russian League 2006). 10…Na5 (instead of 10…Qd7) and a quick draw after 10 more moves. 0,5-0,5