Ivanchuk is a genius!!! Ukraine is a champion!!!
What does Ivanchuk do with his opponents in Khanty? 6 out 6 on board 1! It's something unbelievable! This is the guy who had exactly 2700 in live rating just year ago. Everyone was telling "mmm, his times are over! He was a good player...really good player." And what do we see now? Just one year later Ivanchuk demonstrates SUCH LEVEL of play that I have probably never seen before!
I don't have an aim to analyze his games deeply. I just want to delight by his play. And I wish you did the same!
Well, first two rounds were not quite serious for him (not like it would be for me). Two wins and no surprises.
Then Beljavskiy... Very strong player (he had a candidate match vs. Kasparov in 1983!; 4-times USSR champion!) for whom it's getting more and more difficult to fight at the top level (1953 year of birth is not a joke!). As a result, 25 moves and simple (at least it seems so) win. So far, nothing special; there are many players in the world who could perform in such way (although not me).
Round 4. Black vs. Ivan Sokolov who used to be at the very top years ago as well. Benko gambit (quite dubious opening choice) and another convincing victory (white could resign on move 15!). To be honest, I'm sure Ivan blundered 7...Nxe4 but we can see result in the standings...
Round 5. White vs. Leko. Equal opening...One inaccuracy from Hungarian (move 19) and Ukrainian genius kills him perfectly!
And finally round 6. White vs. Jobava who also has very good tournament so far. Actually this is the game that forced me to publish this post. WHAT WAS HE DOING??? Who else could go to such sort of positions against Jobava (well-known agressive player)? Moves 15 and 16 (Bd1 and Ne2) still shock me especially strongly!!! I don't know any player in the world who could first go to this position and then to win in 34 moves! Only Ivanchuk is able for such action! I am ready to repeat this game over and over! It's a very rare brilliant! Just look at it!
In an hour he plays with black against Kramnik in the crucial match vs. RUS-1... What will we see there? Here the question is! I strongly believe (maybe because I'm Ukrainian ) he will not stop yet (although I understand probably this is a good moment to make a pause ).
And I wish him and all team only win today! Let's do 2004 again, guys!