GargleBlaster's Year in Review
Anyhow, to celebrate the coming new year, let's look at the ten most notable games from 2013:
#10: Beware of Tiger
2013 was at times less than kind to Anand, he but still managed to produce one of the very best games of the year against Aronian at Wijk, er, Corus, er, Tata...
#9: Svidler Raises the Roof
Svidler had a pretty decent year, especially in terms of interesting games. Here's a wonderful win of his in Norway against the eventual tournament winner.
#7: The Spider Returns
Adams has also enjoyed something of a renaissance in 2013, including a fantastic win in Dortmund ahead of Kramnik. In this game we can see just how sharp the "Berlin Endgame" can become.
#6: Erroneous Aronian
Aronian tied for first with Gelfand in the Alekhine Memorial, but this disaster in the London Candidates Tournament all but ended his 2013 World Championship aspirations.
In terms of sheer drama, this game is clearly the game of the year - Tomashevsky, needing a win against Morozevich to force a blitz tiebreak, grinds his way through 169 nail-biting moves to finally emerge victorious. An unforgettable fight.
#3: Vlad's Revenge
Kramnik had an up and down year, to put it mildly: heartbreak at the Candidates, disaster at the Tal Memorial, victory at the World Cup, and absurdity at the London Classic. This game was a highlight, however, as Vlad takes revenge on Andreikin for his terrible loss against him a few months earlier in the Tal Memorial.
#2: The Immortal Refusal
Carlsen, needing only a draw to win the Sinquefield Cup, gets a bad position against Aronian. Buckling down, he doggedly digs himself out of trouble. Eventually Aronian, seeing the handwriting on the wall, decides to offer a draw, thus handing Magnus the tournament. And what happens? Magnus DECLINES! ZOMG. OK, perhaps I'm overstating things, but it was a gesture that will probably go down in chess lore as symbolic of what makes Carlsen great - his relentless, fighting spirit and his ability to create chances out of seemingly any situation.
#1: Vishful Thinking
This already famous game features Anand, back against the wall, attempting to storm the fortress, to scale the ramparts, to once more the breeches, and so forth. Alas, in the end all he succeeded in was pulling Superman's cape, but, hey, at least he tried, and for that, we're grateful. Thanks, Vishy, Magnus, Boris, Vlad, Mikey, MVL, and everyone else for a memorable 2013!