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Caruana Wins Zurich Chess Challenge

  • SonofPearl
  • on 3/1/13, 11:27 AM.

Zurich Chess Challenge logo 2013.jpgIt was a thrilling final round at the Zurich Chess Challenge, with both games ending in victories for the white pieces.

Vladimir Kramnik reverted to a more traditional opening choice, playing the Berlin with black against Vishy Anand.  In response, the champion avoided the sterile well-trodden paths of the main line but was still struggling to demonstrate any advantage.

In a similar fashion to his remarkable round 3 game, Kramnik once again established a knight outpost deep in enemy territory - this time at e2, supported by a passed pawn at d3!  However, this time the ambitious stallion was undone by an uncharacteristic blunder from Kramnik with 21...Qb8??  Suddenly, Vishy Anand had a clear route to an advantage, and he didn't need to be asked twice.

After only 27 moves, Vladimir Kramnik resigned!

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In the other final round game Fabiano Caruana had the white pieces against Boris Gelfand. The Italian-American was already guaranteed first place thanks to Kramnik's quick loss, but he was still eager to earn a full point from his Israeli opponent.

Caruana gained a material advantage in the shape of Gelfand's juicy d5 pawn, but positional compensation ensured that the game remained finely balanced.  However, as Gelfand's clock ran low, a slip with 30...Qd6? allowed an alert Caruana to play 31.Re8+! and gain a clear endgame advantage.  Gelfand mounted a rearguard action to save the game, but a final mistake with 55...h4?? sealed his doom.

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Tournament winner, 20 year-old Fabiano Caruana

Zurich Chess Challenge 2013 Round 3 Fabiano Caruana.jpg

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The final standings

Name Fed Elo Pts
Caruana, Fabiano ITA 2757 4
Anand, Viswanathan IND 2780 3
Kramnik, Vladimir RUS 2810
Gelfand, Boris ISR 2740

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Photo from the official website. Games via TWIC.

6529 reads 30 comments
6 votes

Comments


  • 20 months ago

    AkshitaGorti

    Great job Caruana

  • 20 months ago

    P_G_M

    @_valentin_

    I agree with you, Gelfand played the endgame wrong. All pawns were on the king side and if played correctly it should have been a draw. Houdini's evaluation after move 40 is 0.86, not enough to force a win by white. His best approach was to force exchanging down to a rook endgame. 

  • 20 months ago

    chessrook1234

    Naka can easily beat Caruna..Caruna cant decide if he is Italian or American ;-)

  • 20 months ago

    pinneese

    congratulations to Caruana,a gifted player

  • 20 months ago

    Melchizedek10

    Great tournament for Fabio...winning both blitz and classical...Does show he belong in top 10 at the moment when he is in good shape...Tata probably his emotional state was not that great!

  • 20 months ago

    zhouwei

    Great job by Caruana, he do not fear attacking and will be next 2800s.

  • 20 months ago

    Brazda

    As I wrote earlier: they played under pressure from the coming candidates' matches. The end result is the exact invers of this pressure: 1. Fabiano - no pressure at all, 2. Anand - has to defend title in half year, 3-4 Kramnik & Gelfand: have to spare all energy, ideas, novelties for the March tournament in London.

  • 20 months ago

    _valentin_

    Gelfand's endgame play (after move 40) seemed all too eager with those aggressive pawn pushes.  One has to wonder if a more placid and controlled play by black would not have saved the game; after all, 4 vs. 3 pawns on the same side of the board is more often a drawn endgame than a win...

  • 20 months ago

    Lawdoginator

    The Night of the Iguana! 

  • 20 months ago

    knightstar2

    Caruana has the counter attaching style of Fisher, and dares to attack from back-foot.  He is our next world champion.

  • 20 months ago

    Fasmin

    young players are doing well recently. This is an evidence to that.

  • 20 months ago

    mobidi

    This was my prognosis ! Youngest and strongest !Wink

  • 20 months ago

    pulpfriction

    Well done, Caruana!  Hope you are the future WC.

  • 20 months ago

    dancentino

    what about the reykjavik? have any update?

  • 20 months ago

    Aknaim

    @FilipinoChess  Yes he did, indirectly but it was very obvious who he was refering to at the time. He's done alot of things like that, such as blaming "weak" players on the US National team for their losses in the chess olympics,even though its a team effort.

  • 20 months ago

    FilipinoChess

    @aknaim, did naka really said that about caruana? oh thats low now i know where some of the neg comments on naka is coming from. 

  • 20 months ago

    Aknaim

    @LetsReason, my point was that I want to know Nakamura's next excuse Wink

  • 20 months ago

    LetsReason

    Who cares what Nakamura thinks about Caruana? He has always, and I mean always, been one to run his mouth. He should focus on staying at the top himself. Maybe he should find a way to beat Carlsen.

    Caruana deserves the praise for a job well done.

  • 20 months ago

    Champeknight

    Carlsen time! After these unspectacular games

  • 20 months ago

    Aknaim

    Congratulations to Caruana, wonder if Naka still thinks Carauana plays against weaklings to gain points.

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