Monday, January 9, 2017

Magnus Carlsen London System

Magnus Carlsen lost with the London System in the 2016 World Rapid Championship. Carlsen played well in the early part of this short game. But like anyone could, Carlsen let his advantage slip. Grandmaster Anton Korobov from the Ukraine had a FIDE Rapid rating of 2750 as of December 2016. Korobov won the European Blitz Championship in 2013. Black was ahead on time in this game.

On move 17 White was more tempted to attack a bishop than to take a pawn. White had the idea of 18.Qh3 with a mate threat. But the move 17.Qd7!? gave Black surprisingly strong counter play. Under time pressure Magnus Carlsen blundered with 18.Ng5?

Carlsen (2840) - Korobov (2692), World Rapid 2016 Doha QAT (11.1), 28.12.2016 begins 1.d4 d5 2.Bf4 c5 3.e3 Nc6 4.c3 Nf6 5.Nd2 [5.Nf3 Qb6 may lead White to weaken his pawn structure with 6.b3 or 6.Qb3. If instead 6.Qc2 Nh5 7.Be5 f6 8.dxc5 Qxc5 9.Bd4 Black can gain the two bishops or play for more with 9...Qa5 10.b4 Qc7 11.c4 e5 12.cxd5 exd4 13.dxc6 Bxb4+ 14.Nbd2 dxe3 15.fxe3 Qxc6 16.Qb3 Bxd2+ 17.Nxd2 Be6=] 5...e6 [5...Bf5 6.Ngf3 e6=] 6.Ngf3 Bd6 7.Bg3 [7.dxc5 Bxc5 8.Be2 0-0 9.0-0 Nh5 10.Bg3 Nxg3 11.hxg3 a5=] 7...0-0 8.Bb5!? [Although this bishop pin has been successful in practice, more common is 8.Bd3 b6 9.Ne5 Bb7 10.f4 Ne7 11.Qf3=] 8...Ne7 [8...Be7 9.dxc5 Bxc5 10.Qc2=] 9.Bd3 b6 [9...c4 10.Bc2 b5 11.0-0=] 10.e4! Bxg3 [10...dxe4 11.Nxe4 Nxe4 12.Bxe4 Nd5 13.dxc5 Bxc5 14.Qc2=; 10...c4 11.Bc2 Nxe4 12.Nxe4 dxe4 13.Bxe4 Rb8 14.Nd2+/=] 11.hxg3 dxe4 [11...Ng6 12.e5 Ng4 13.0-0=] 12.Nxe4 Ng6 [12...Ned5 13.dxc5 bxc5 14.Nxc5 Qb6 15.Nb3 h6 16.0-0+/=] 13.dxc5 [White might win the Exchange by 13.Ne5!? Bb7 14.Nxf6+ Qxf6 15.Nd7+/-] 13...Bb7 14.Nxf6+ Qxf6 15.cxb6 e5 16.Bxg6 hxg6 [16...Qxg6 17.0-0+/-] 17.Qd7!? [17.bxa7! Rxa7 18.0-0+/- White's three passed pawns on the queenside should more than compensate for Black's kingside attacking chances.] 17...Qxb6 18.Ng5? [This loses. White has at least two playable options with at least equal chances. 18.0-0-0 Rad8 19.Qe7 Rxd1+ 20.Rxd1 Bxf3 21.gxf3 Qxf2 22.Qxe5 Qxf3=; or 18.Qh3 f6 19.0-0-0 Rad8 20.Qg4 Bc8 21.Qxg6 Rxd1+ 22.Rxd1 Qxf2 23.Qc2=] 18...Bxg2 19.0-0-0 Rab8 20.b3 [20.b4 Qxf2 21.Rhg1 Qxa2-+] 20...Qxf2 21.Qg4 [Losing more slowly is 21.Rh7 Qxg3 22.Qd2 f6 23.Ne6 Kxh7 24.Nxf8+ Rxf8 25.Rg1 Rd8 26.Rxg2 Qf4 27.Qxf4 exf4-+] 21...Rfc8 22.Kb1 Rxc3 23.Qb4 Rcc8 0-1

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