Reports | September 06, 2011 20:01

World Cup's 4th round starts with tough fights

The FIDE World Cup has reached its fourth round, and six out of the eight games ended decisively: Polgar-Dominguez 0-1, Svidler-Kamsky 1-0, Gashimov-Nielsen 1-0, Radjabov-Jakovenko 1-0, Zherebukh-Navara 0-1 and Potkin-Grischuk 1-0. The games Bruzon-Ponomariov and Bu Xiangzhi-Ivanchuk ended in draws.

General info

The 2011 FIDE World Cup is a 128-player knock-out taking place August 27-September 20 in Khanty-Mansiysk, Siberia. The tournament delivers three participants for the next Candidates tournament/matches, as part of the new World Championship cycle. Except for the final, all rounds have 2-game matches at the FIDE time control: 90 minutes for 40 moves followed by 30 minutes to finish the game, with a 30-second increment from the first move. In case of a 1-1 tie, on the third day of the round there's a tie-break with rapid games and if necessary blitz games and an Armageddon. More info here. Tournament bracket

Round 4.1

Earlier we wrote that as soon as the rating differences decrease between the players, the number of draws will increase in the World Cup. While this theory follows a recent analysis by Jeff Sonas, on the first day of the fourth round the players seemed to disagree! In a very blood-thirsty round, six out of eight games ended decisively.

After she knocked out the top seed in the previous round, most eyes were on Judit Polgar. Things didn't go so well this time.

Khanty-Mansiysk, 2011

Polgar didn't play too well in the middlegame and has been slightly worse for a while already. After the next move it's over immediately.
44. b4?
44. h4 Rg1+ 45. Kh3 Rh1+ 46. Rh2 still keeps drawing chances.
44... Be3! 45. Qf3 Rg1+ 46. Kh3 Qg5 0-1

David Navara, who is quickly becoming one of the fans' favourites, won easily when Yaroslav Zherebukh blundered material.

Khanty-Mansiysk, 2011

Black is already better, but the next move loses material.
20. Bd3? Bxd4 21. Qxd4 Bxd3 22. cxd3
22. Qxd3 Qb6+ 23. Kh1 Nf2+.
22... Nd2!
If the f1-rook moves, 23...Nb3 will win the exchange anyway. Zherebukh tried the creative
23. Rae1 Nxf1 24. Rxe6!? but 24... Nd2 25. Nxd5 Nb3 26. Qe5 Ra7 was, with an extra rook, not difficult to defend for Black.

Vugar Gashimov, who didn't need a tie-break thus far, beat Peter Heine Nielsen in a Berlin Wall - again one of the most popular defences for Black against 1.e4 in Khanty. Nielsen tried a positional exchange sacrifice which indeed looked quite OK for Black, but in the end Gashimov managed to win anyway.

After eliminating the higher-reated Nikita Vitiugov, Vladimir Potkin continued very strongly with a convincing win against Alexander Grischuk. Teimour Radjabov's play against Dmitry Jakovenko also looked very powerful, as the Azeri's play looked in general thus far. Peter Svidler did the same against Gata Kramnik, an opponent he normally has difficulties playing against. 

Games round 4.1


Game viewer by ChessTempo

FIDE World Cup 2011 | Round 4 results
Name G1 G2 R1 R2 r3 r4 B1 B2 SD Tot
Round 4 Match 01
Polgar, Judit (HUN) 0                 0.0
Dominguez Perez, Leinier (CUB) 1                 1
Round 4 Match 02
Bu, Xiangzhi (CHN) ½                 0.5
Ivanchuk, Vassily (UKR) ½                 0.5
Round 4 Match 03
Zherebukh, Yaroslav (UKR) 0                 0.0
Navara, David (CZE) 1                 1
Round 4 Match 04
Bruzon Batista, Lazaro (CUB) ½                 0.5
Ponomariov, Ruslan (UKR) ½                 0.5
Round 4 Match 05
Gashimov, Vugar (AZE) 1                 1.0
Nielsen, Peter Heine (DEN) 0                 0
Round 4 Match 06
Potkin, Vladimir (RUS) 1                 1.0
Grischuk, Alexander (RUS) 0                 0
Round 4 Match 07
Radjabov, Teimour (AZE) 1                 1.0
Jakovenko, Dmitry (RUS) 0                 0
Round 4 Match 08
Svidler, Peter (RUS) 1                 1.0
Kamsky, Gata (USA) 0                 0

Photos © FIDE | Official website


Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers

Founder and editor-in-chief of, Peter is responsible for most of the chess news and tournament reports. Often visiting top events, he also provides photos and videos for the site. He's a 1.e4 player himself, likes Thai food and the Stones.


unknown's picture

Go Judit!

Gens una sumus's picture

Is Kamsky-Svidler 1-0 or vice versa?

Chess Fan's picture


Chess Fan's picture


Chess Fan's picture


Joe's picture

Svidler wins.
There’s a small error in Potkin-Grischuk though (should be 1-0 in upper text?)

Peter Doggers's picture

Yeah was just correcting, thanks both!

Dirk Bredemeier's picture

In Polgar-Dominguez, what is wrong with 17. Ld5: instead of 17. ed:, which looks illogical to my amateurish eyes. Look at the poor Bishop on b3 and c4 later in the game! Do i miss something obvious? Or did Polgar wanted to much from the position and keep the Bishop for a attack?
Still i think she is really a great player!

Joe's picture

Maybe the original idea was something like freeing the e4 field for the knight as well as planning to position the bishop on the b1-h7 diagonal? Just guessing too though.

Juan's picture

In fact is the correct continuation, but that leads to 17.Bd5 Nxd5 18.Rxd5 Qc4 19. QxQ RxQ, which is very drawish.

Looks like Judith tried to complicate the situtation, but that put her into a worse position.

Sarunas's picture

Polgar -Dominguez -indeed 17.e:d? is a watershed point. One doesn’t ought to be GM to know that d5 is designed for piece, making d6 pawn vulnerable. White pawn on d5 makes d6 safe and also depresses efectively both Rd1 and Bb3.
Of course Judith knew it much better than me. The thing is the World Cup players at such advanced stage are requested to jump beyond evident strategic laws to catch the opponent unaware and expand limits of safe normal reasoning as Navara did and keeps succesfully doing.
That said I fully agree with Juan that 17.B:d5 N:d5 18.R:d5 Qc4! 19. takes takes 20.Nd2 Rc6 with Rac8 or Bg5 coming is absolutely harmless to Black and safely renders White pieces to Cuban GM. Apparently J.Polgar wasn’t too enthusiastic ’bout that…

TMM's picture

So far Radjabov and Gashimov did not need any tiebreaks, and again they are leading 1-0. If I had to put my money on someone, it would be one of those two players (with perhaps Ivanchuk as a strong “outsider”).

Septimus's picture

Potkin is looking really strong. It would take a miracle from Grischuk to knock him out.

columbo's picture

Grischuk himself is a miracle !

Sarunas's picture

In the middle of the night I realized that 17.R:d5!!(rook takes bishop) was called for in Polgar white game. This just hands in an exchange to Dominguez. Nevertheless after 17...N:d5 18.B:d5 white establishes his bishop in the very heart of Black position and thus achieves fool-blooded compensation. For reference you should find famous Kasparov -Shirov game in Sveshnikov (don't ask me the year). White proceeds with g3-h4, Kg2, Ng5 or Nh2-g4 and then Qf3 squeezing f7. Tu cut it short plays calmly an exchange down for 30 moves to come with bishop on d5 monitoring Black pulse.

Martin Matthiesen's picture

Black seems if not better then at least very fine after 17.Rxd5!? a5

steven's picture

I'm following the games live and according to the official website Grischuk seems to be playing with black just as he did yesterday.

Septimus's picture

It is wrong, he played White today and won against Potkin's French.

Q's picture

Gata Kramnik??? Please correct that.

Sarunas's picture

Oh yes, that's an eye-opener 17...a5. Thanks, Martin

Septimus's picture

Polgar won a marathon today against Dominiguez. Not the perfect game, but then playing for four or five hours straight is never easy. Both players blundered, but the one with the final blunder lost. All in all thoroughly enjoying for the spectators.

Daniel's picture

Good game,

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