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London 04: Vishnu sole winner among the Indians

by Priyadarshan Banjan - 07/12/2015

The Berlin Defense, which has made an appearance in so many of the previous Anand-Carlsen clashes, was summoned once again by the champion players. Anand gained a small edge, then he misplayed it to land in a worse position, but then Magnus returned the favour and both players went home fuming, with only a draw. Among the Indians competing in the FIDE Open being held simultaneously, GM Vishnu Prasanna (2514) was the sole winner in the fourth round as he removed IM Sopiko Guramishvili (2368) out of his way. An illustrated report.

London 04: Vishnu sole winner among the Indians

The FIDE Open being held simultaneously alongside the Classic finally saw a sole leader when GM Evgeny Postny was able to win his fourth straight game, to be the only player with a score of 4.0/4. Among the Indians competing in the Open, GM Vishnu Prasanna (2514) was the sole winner in the fourth round as he removed IM Sopiko Guramishvili (2368) out of his way.


IM Sagar Shah (2441), IM Crg Krishna (2367), IM Tania Sachdev (2357), all drew their games against higher rated opponents. IM Swayams Mishra (2477) was playing a slightly lower-rated player, and he drew as well. All of them, except Tania who drew one additional game in the second round, moved to the joint second place at 3.5/4.


Among the untitled players from India, V. Ap Karthik (2310), who had upset French GM Roman Edouard (2627) in the second round, also held GM Tiberiu-Marian Georgescu (2453) to a draw. V. Haribalu (2174) drew with German FM Fabian Englert (2350).

GM Vishnu Prasanna (2514) about to play 20. Qb1

White just went 20. Qb1. What would you do if you were Black? Keep the queens or exchange it?

In the game, Sopiko chose to exchange the queens, and if you try evaluating the position after the trade, you may notice that all Black's counterplay due to the presence of the white rook on a1 has vanished. Black played 20... Qxb1+ 21. Rxb1, when White has all the trumps. Instead, 20...Qf6! with the threat of ...e4 holds the balance.

[Event "London FIDE Open"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2015.12.06"]
[Round "4.14"]
[White "Vishnu, Prasanna V"]
[Black "Guramishvili, Sopiko"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "E71"]
[WhiteElo "2514"]
[BlackElo "2368"]
[PlyCount "93"]
[EventDate "2015.??.??"]
[WhiteClock "0:06:26"]
[BlackClock "0:02:45"]
1. c4 Nf6 2. Nc3 g6 3. e4 d6 4. d4 Bg7 5. h3 O-O 6. Nf3 e5 7. d5 Nh5 8. g3 Na6
9. Be2 f5 10. exf5 gxf5 11. Bg5 Nf6 12. g4 Nc5 13. gxf5 Bxf5 14. Nh4 Qd7 15.
Rg1 Kh8 16. Be3 Nfe4 17. Nxe4 Bxe4 18. Rg4 Bf5 19. Nxf5 Qxf5 20. Qb1 Qxb1+ 21.
Rxb1 Nd7 22. Kd2 a6 23. Rbg1 Bf6 24. Kc2 Rf7 25. h4 Rg7 26. h5 c6 27. Rxg7 Bxg7
28. h6 Bf6 29. dxc6 bxc6 30. Bf3 Rc8 31. Bg4 Rg8 32. f3 Nf8 33. Bc8 Ng6 34.
Bxa6 Rb8 35. Rb1 Nh4 36. b4 Nf5 37. Bf2 Nxh6 38. b5 c5 39. b6 Bd8 40. b7 Nf5
41. Kd3 Kg7 42. Ke4 Kf6 43. Rh1 Kg6 44. Rg1+ Kf6 45. Rg8 Bc7 46. Rc8 d5+ 47.
Kxd5 1-0

IM Swayams Mishra (2477) [left]

IM Swayams Mishra (2477) played a topical variation of the Slav with the white pieces. He won a black pawn on f5, but his weak pawn on e2 meant that a repetition was just good enough.

[Event "London FIDE Open"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2015.12.06"]
[Round "4.5"]
[White "Swayams, Mishra"]
[Black "Bartholomew, John"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "D17"]
[WhiteElo "2477"]
[BlackElo "2443"]
[PlyCount "59"]
[EventDate "2015.??.??"]
[WhiteClock "0:04:26"]
[BlackClock "0:14:42"]
1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. Ne5 Nbd7 7. Nxc4 Qc7 8.
g3 e5 9. dxe5 Nxe5 10. Bf4 Nfd7 11. Bg2 f6 12. O-O g5 13. Bxe5 Nxe5 14. Nxe5
Qxe5 15. a5 a6 16. Qb3 Rb8 17. Ra4 Be6 18. Qc2 f5 19. Kh1 Bg7 20. f4 gxf4 21.
Raxf4 O-O 22. Bh3 Rbe8 23. Bxf5 Bxf5 24. Rxf5 Rxf5 25. Rxf5 Qe6 26. Rh5 Qg6 27.
Qb3+ Qe6 28. Qc2 Qg6 29. Qb3+ Qe6 30. Qc2 1/2-1/2

IM Sagar Shah (2441)

Sagar did have a slight edge in the early middlegame, but it did not prove to be substantial, and the game eventually petered out into a draw.

[Event "London FIDE Open"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2015.12.06"]
[Round "4.3"]
[White "Sagar, Shah"]
[Black "Vakhidov, Jahongir"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "B38"]
[WhiteElo "2441"]
[BlackElo "2546"]
[PlyCount "92"]
[EventDate "2015.??.??"]
[WhiteClock "0:22:36"]
[BlackClock "0:32:04"]
1. Nf3 c5 2. c4 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 g6 5. e4 Bg7 6. Be3 Nf6 7. Nc3 O-O 8.
Be2 d6 9. O-O Bd7 10. Nc2 Qa5 11. a3 Rfc8 12. f4 Qd8 13. b4 Be6 14. Rc1 Nb8 15.
c5 dxc5 16. Qxd8+ Rxd8 17. Bxc5 Nfd7 18. Bd4 Nc6 19. Bxg7 Kxg7 20. Nb5 Nf6 21.
Nc7 Rac8 22. Nxe6+ fxe6 23. e5 Nd5 24. Bg4 Nc3 25. Rce1 Rd2 26. Bxe6 Rf8 27.
Rf2 Rxf2 28. Kxf2 Rxf4+ 29. Kg1 Nd4 30. Nxd4 Rxd4 31. Re3 Ne4 32. h4 Nd2 33. g3
b6 34. Kf2 Nc4 35. Bxc4 Rxc4 36. Rf3 Re4 37. Re3 Rd4 38. Rc3 a5 39. Ke3 Rg4 40.
Kf3 h5 41. Rc6 axb4 42. Rxb6 bxa3 43. Ra6 Kf7 44. Rxa3 Ke6 45. Ra7 Rd4 46. Ke3
Rg4 1/2-1/2


Legendary photographer Ray Morris-Hill, excellent reviewer of chess books and DVDs
Carl Portman, and International Master and commentator Tania Sachdev

V. Haribalu (2175) drew with German FM Fabian Englert (2350)

The Top-20 Ranks at the FIDE Open:

Rk. SNo     Name Rtg Pts.
1 1   GM Postny Evgeny ISR 2670 4,0
2 5   GM Lenderman Alex USA 2626 3,5
  8   GM Bok Benjamin NED 2594 3,5
  9   GM Hansen Eric CAN 2577 3,5
  10   GM Hawkins Jonathan ENG 2569 3,5
  12   GM Rambaldi Francesco ITA 2560 3,5
  13   GM Vakhidov Jahongir UZB 2546 3,5
  14   GM Baron Tal ISR 2544 3,5
  16   GM Vishnu Prasanna V IND 2514 3,5
  18   IM Sadzikowski Daniel POL 2506 3,5
  22   GM Fodor Tamas Jr HUN 2492 3,5
  23   GM Arkell Keith Cc ENG 2490 3,5
  26   IM Swayams Mishra IND 2477 3,5
  28   GM Hebden Mark L ENG 2469 3,5
  33   IM Bartholomew John USA 2443 3,5
  36   IM Sagar Shah IND 2441 3,5
  51   IM Krishna Crg IND 2367 3,5
  59   IM Cox John J ENG 2342 3,5
  89     Lahtela Silvo GER 2236 3,5
  107     Osborne Marcus E ENG 2180 3,5

Classic 03: Anand and Carlsen left fuming

There was only one decisive result in the Classic  when MVL beat Topalov to climb into joint lead with Anish Giri. You can read the details in the complete report by IM Sagar Shah at our international news page.

Magnus Carlsen and his second Peter Heine-Nielsen, who interestingly was a former Anand second, are in a joyus mood...

No, that does not mean Aronian is Anand's second!
The round was held on a Sunday, and Anand was as eager to play as the fans were to watch!


Battle Royale

The sight of yet another Berlin, which honestly should be renamed London, seems to have lulled Magnus to sleep as he soon found himself sailing on a choppy sea... 

As you can see in IM Sagar Shah's analysis below, Anand , who had the white pieces, could certainly claim an advantage here. As the analysis shows, 26. Kf3? was an oversight by Anand who lost all his advantage after this move. Carlsen replied 26... Rxh1!1 27. Rxh1 Nc6, when suddenly, the e5 pawn is hanging. Black is already pretty fine according to Sagar.


Instead of 26. Kf3 in the above position, 26. Rxh8 Rxh8 27. Kf3 would have given Anand an advantage because trying 27... Nc6 like Black did in the game doesn't work as now the rook is on h8 and not on e8! Now, 28. Rd1 and white has a pleasant advantage. Unfortunately, Anand went wrong with 26.Kf3 first.

Analysis by IM Sagar Shah:

[Event "7th London Classic 2015"]
[Site "London ENG"]
[Date "2015.12.06"]
[Round "3.4"]
[White "Anand, Viswanathan"]
[Black "Carlsen, Magnus"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "C67"]
[WhiteElo "2803"]
[BlackElo "2850"]
[Annotator "Sagar Shah"]
[PlyCount "111"]
[EventDate "2015.12.04"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Nxe4 5. d4 Nd6 6. Bxc6 dxc6 7. dxe5 Nf5
8. Qxd8+ Kxd8 9. Nc3 Ke8 10. h3 Be6 11. Rd1 Bc5 12. g4 Ne7 13. Ng5 Bd5 14. Nge4
Bb6 15. Kg2 Rd8 16. Bf4 Ng6 17. Bg3 h5 18. f4 hxg4 19. hxg4 Ke7 20. Rh1 Bd4 21.
Nxd5+ cxd5 22. Nc3 Bxc3 23. bxc3 Kd7 24. f5 Ne7 25. Rae1 {White has a
dominating position here. His pawns on e5 and f5 are extremely strong and his
bishop works perfectly. It might not be a very huge advantage but it's very
easy to play as White and Magnus's defensive task is not so easy.} Rde8 26. Kf3
$6 {A pretty bad oversight by Anand who loses all his advantage.} (26. Rxh8
Rxh8 27. Kf3 Nc6 {Trying to play like in the game doesn't work as now the rook
is on h8 and not on e8.} 28. Rd1 $1 $16) 26... Rxh1 $1 27. Rxh1 Nc6 {Suddenly
the e5 pawn is hanging. Black is already pretty fine.} 28. Re1 g5 $1 {Keeping
the king out of the f4 square.} 29. a4 a6 30. Kg2 Kc8 31. Kf2 b6 32. Kf3 Kd7
33. Kf2 Kc8 {Both of the players were sort of repeating moves and maybe a draw
would have been agreed immediately if Anand would not have made the following
mistake.} 34. Re3 $2 {The rook move to e3 is an embarrassingly poor move as
Anand pointed out in the press conference. There is no point to it and the
rook simply comes under attack after Na5-c4.} Na5 $1 35. Re1 Nc4 {The tables
have turned. Black is the one in the driver's seat and his next task is to
create a passed pawn on the queenside.} 36. Kf3 Kd7 37. Kg2 a5 (37... c6 {
It could have been more accurate to start with c6 although what Carlsen played
in the game is also fine.}) 38. Kf2 c6 39. Kg2 {Anand moves his king from
f2-g2 while Carlsen slowly strengthens his position.} b5 40. Rb1 Rh8 (40...
Nxe5 $1 {would have been very interesting.} 41. axb5 Nxg4 42. b6 Ne3+ 43. Kf2 (
43. Kf3 g4+ $1) 43... Nxf5 44. b7 Nxg3 45. b8=Q Ne4+ 46. Ke3 Rxb8 47. Rxb8 Nxc3
$17 {Black has excellent winning chances.}) 41. Bf2 $1 {Now the threat is to
take on b5.} (41. axb5 cxb5 42. Rxb5 Kc6 $15) 41... Nxe5 42. axb5 Nxg4 43.
bxc6+ Kxc6 44. Bd4 {White is a pawn down but just too active to have any
problems.} Re8 45. Kg3 Ne5 46. Rb6+ Kc7 47. Rf6 Kd7 48. Bxe5 Rxe5 49. Kg4 Ke7
50. Kxg5 Re1 51. Ra6 f6+ 52. Kg4 Rg1+ 53. Kf4 Rf1+ 54. Kg4 Rg1+ 55. Kf4 Rf1+
56. Kg4 {A topsy turvy encounter where first Anand had a superior position and
then Carlsen botched up his chance.} 1/2-1/2

Magnus got an edge after some inaccurate moves by Anand, but Magnus returned the favour, to leave both the contestants fuming

Round 04 Pairings (9.30 PM IST]

Round 4 Monday 7 Dec, 16.00-23.00
Anish Giri
Levon Aronian
Magnus Carlsen
Michael Adams
Hikaru Nakamura
Viswanathan Anand
Veselin Topalov
Fabiano Caruana
Alexander Grischuk
M Vachier-Lagrave


Pairings for Round 5 of the FIDE Open

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