27 Dec 2008

ELISTA round 12

In the frozen North, Elista to be precise, they are hard at it: one of the Grand Prix tournaments is taking place with 14 players taking part.

Carlsen has opted out of the circuit, and I can't blame him. Fide is mucking top players about yet again.

Today I am following the game between Radjabov and Akopian, playing a C45 for a change.

and Radja has deviated from the only game left in my database: Ivanchuk vs Timoschenko 1987 0-1. There White played 9.Be3 and Radja opted for 9.h4, answered by Akopian, after a twenty-five minute think, with ....h5.
Now Radja might have attacked Black's DSB with 10.Na4, but he obviously didn't want to unbalance his position at this stage and attacked said Bishop with 10.Be3.

Is he planning to castle long? That will depend on whether or not Black swaps bishops. And Black does! So no castling yet for White.

By this exchange White has thrown down the gauntlet and leaves it up to Black to decide the direction of the middle game: always a grave responsibility, which will cost Akopian some time. Is Radja doing a 'Carlsen', by making his opponent use up so much time that a shortage by Move 40 may cause a less than perfect move and provide a toehold for White? We shall see.
Time: 1hr 53 mins vs 1hr 26 mins. Eval 0.30

White plays 12.Be2, but it is still 0-0-0 rather than 0-0, that is on the cards.

Waiting, waiting, waiting.
How do players stand it? I have always found it impossible to sit still and used to bring my knitting to games. With bamboo needles, that are noiseless, it was usually accepted.
That wasn't the case for BG tournaments, where it was frowned upon. I am so used to playing 24-point BG games against the computer inside ten minutes, that an 11-point game lasting 40 minutes ( my opponent's time, as I play instantly) used to drive me round the bend, unless my unwary opponent would let me defeat him (usually) by chatting. Ahh those were the days....

Akopian has used up 57 minutes, Radja only needed 8 minutes.

Bacrot and Grischuk have already drawn. They must have had plans to go skiing today.

After Move 13.f4 Bg4, when Radja has used a total of 20 mins and Akopian needed 1 hour.

I went for a highly needed walk and found them drawn when I got back.One game still going, between Kasim and Cheparinov

Kasim has 1/2 pawn advantage. So probably won't accept a draw just yet. If he wins this, he will move up to shared 5th place. See table below.

Move 22.g4 may not have been the best choice. 22.Qf2 first? 22....Bf4 23.g4
Cheparinov is playing very accurately at the minute and it could now be drawn any time soon. Time 16 mins for White, 26 mins for Black.

I believe now a draw offer from Black would not fall on deaf ears, as Kasim needs to make 15 moves in as many minutes.

Mysteriously Chepa decided to take with the Bishop rather than the Rook.

and gives Kasim renewed chances after 26.Rad1 Bxf5 27.Nb5! Qg7?? (Raf6 would have been nice).
Can Kasim find now the move 28.Qa3 and direct operations to the QS?
No he doesn't, but in the following moves Chepa crumbles under time pressure and loses the game. So KAZIMDZHANOV WINS ROUND 12 . Good for him entertaining us a little longer than the others, who were all satisfied with a draw today.

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