Reports | November 24, 2012 23:18

FIDE GP: Mamedyarov and Caruana win in third round

Tashkent logo

The World Chess Grand Prix saw Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Fabiano Caruana scoring wins in Tashkent on Saturday, over Peter Svidler and Gata Kamsky respectively. The other four games ended in a draw and thus Alexander Morozevich remains in the lead.

Tashkent Grand Prix logo | Photos courtesy of FIDE

Event FIDE Grand Prix | PGN via TWIC
Dates November 21st-December 5th, 2012
Location Tashkent, Uzbekistan
System 12-player robin
Players Karjakin, Caruana, Morozevich, Kamsky, Wang HaoMamedyarov, Svidler, Gelfand, Ponomariov,Leko, Dominguez, Kasimdzhanov
Rate of play

120 minutes for the first 40 moves, 60 minutes for the next 20 moves and then each player will be allotted 15 minutes after the second time control and an increment of 30 seconds per move will be allowed from move 61 onwards

Extra Players will not be allowed to offer draws directly to their opponents; players will continue to play if the arbiter does not authorise the draw


Shakhriyar Mamedyarov surprised Peter Svidler in a rather unexplored variation of the Grünfeld and scored his first victory this tournament. The Russian committed several inaccuracies and soon had to give up the exchange. 'Shak' took the sting out of the position by trading off pieces and in the ensuing ending the pawn on a6 was doomed to fall:

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Shakhriyar Mamedyarov scored his first victory of the tournament against Peter Svidler

The only other decisive game of the day was seen in Caruana-Kamsky. The baseball-cap-wearing Kamsky opted for his favorite Chebanenko/Schlechter hybrid system in the Slav, but soon got into trouble when he refrained from the liberating ...e7-e5. Instead, he placed his knight on e6, but later on didn't find a suitable plan to justify his action. White gradually improved his position on both wings and so kept his opponent under pressure continously. Once the American-Italian managed to break through on the kingside, Black's resistance was broken.

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Caruana and Kamsky before the start of their game

Rustam Kasimdzhanov comfortably drew his game with Black against Leinier Dominguez. In a topical line of the Anti-Marshall with 8.h3, the Uzbek seemed well prepared and deviated on move 15 from the game Leko-Inarkiev played earlier this year. After the queens were traded off Black initiated some pressure along the b-file and could start thinking about more. The Cuban realized in time he had to undertake some action, sacrificed a pawn and convincingly drew by eliminating the remaining pawns.

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Ruslan Ponomariov and Peter Leko opted for a rather quiet Najdorf and soon decided to call it day by repeating the moves on move 19.

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The game between Boris Gelfand and Alexander Morozevich featured the second Grünfeld of the day. White chose the system with 5.Bg5 and 6.Bf4 followed by a temporary pawn sacrifice. The Israeli GM got some compensation because of his pair of bishops, but soon it became clear Black had nothing to worry about either. Despite being down a pawn White was never in danger in view of his firm grip on the dark squares, and thus after the queens were exchanged the players agreed to a draw.

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The longest game of the round was played between Sergey Karjakin and Wang Hao. The Chinese opted for the Rubinstein Variation of the French and spent some time picking up a pawn with his queen. In earlier games Black was punished for this provocative approach and objectively this game doesn't change the assessment of this specific line. Little by little White's position deteriorated and Wang Hao seized the initiative and eventually won a pawn. The ensuing ending with rooks and opposite-coloured bishops remained very unpleasant for White and Karjakin horribly erred with 63.Rd5?.

After this thrilling battle, perhaps Wang Hao didn't even realize his position was suddenly winning, and therefore he missed 68...Kh4!, preventing the white king from approaching the connected passed pawns from behind.

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Sergey Karjakin-Wang Hao: ''Never take on b2, even if it's correct''

World Chess Grand Prix Tashkent 2012 | Round 3 standings

Alexander Morozevich is leading with 2.5 out of 3 games



Robert Ris's picture
Author: Robert Ris

Robert Ris is an International Master, professional trainer and teaches in schools, clubs and individually. He is one of the editors of ChessVibes Openings and ChessVibes Training and from time to time also writes book reviews. Other interests: travelling, sports and Greek food.


chesshire cat's picture

About that Leko game: in "My 60 Memorable Games", Fischer says that e5 in reponse to h3 is bad, because that is what h3 is designed to prevent! Has this assessment been reversed over the years; have many other games been played in this way? Or did Leko spring a surprise? My database is not so hot : )

Anonymous's picture

great question ...

Thomas's picture

I am no Najdorf specialist but may have a more recent or more comprehensive database. 6.-e5 is fairly common (897 games vs. 1632 for 6.-e6) including pretty high-level games: blitz games by Anand and Gelfand and, among others, several games by Vachier-Lagrave, Volokitin and van Wely. These V-guys are fairly theory-minded but the younger ones might not know Fischer's book. BTW top-level games are quite recent (2009 onwards) but this may also be because 6.h3 itself became topical at high level only recently.

Next, 7.Nb3 is fairly rare (by far the main move is 7.Nde2) but Shirov's most recent choice. The decisive moment (or not) might be Ponomariov castling short - sharp stuff happens if white castles long or not at all. Hence I would say that Pono opted for a quiet line, while Leko in any case had to be prepared (theoretically and psychologically) for many less quiet options.

BTW why would h3 prevent e5? The white idea might be g2-g4-g5 kicking away the knight to take control over d5, but black has several options:
- an early h7-h5 (which has its drawbacks but is common in various Sicilian lines nowadays, maybe not yet in the 20th century)
- answering g4 with h6
- even an early d6-d5 while he still has sufficient control over that square.
All moves have pros and cons, anyway chess has certainly advanced since Fischer's active days.

Anonymous's picture

Look at Fabiano, living in Italy is turning him into a regular booze hound.

Anonymous's picture

thumb down

Anonymous's picture

Although visiting Italy quite regularly, Fabiano has never been living there (well, here). After leaving USA, he stayed in Budapest for a few years and is currently living in Switzerland.

Niim's picture

@ Anonymous:

Having a glass of wine does not make you a booze hound. It is frequent in many cultures (including Italy) to have a glass of wine now and then, (particularly during meals). So chill out, lay back, and take a sip.

chesshire cat's picture

I think it is coke actually

Anonymous's picture

whatever it is , Caruana did it again against Gelfand today ... Congratulations !

Septimus's picture

Why did Svidler stop at a5? He could have pushed a4 and used that as a bastion for his black bishop.

chesshire cat's picture

Thanks for info Thomas.

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