Dortmund R6: Naiditsch beats Mamedyarov, other games drawn

CM ArnieChipmunk
0 | Chess Event Coverage
Naiditsch (c) Georgios SouleidisAfter yesterday's rest day, Arkadij Naiditsch scored his first victory of the tournament while the other two games ended in relatively quiet draws.

In today's round, Naiditsch did excellent business after a slightly bleak tournament so far, while Ponomariov and Le Quang consolidated their leading positions.

Le Quang had pretty good chances today against Kramnik after some fine opening preparation. In a topical line of the Catalan Defence, the Vietnamese had prepared a novelty that got Kramnik thinking.

After 16 moves of well-known theory, the following position was reached:

Instead of the still known 17.Nxd7 (Dominguez-Carlsen, Nizza 2010), Le Quang played 17.Rac1! - a move he said afterwards to have found at home - after which White retained his slight but certain opening advantage. A couple of moves later, Kramnik faced an 'octopus' on d6 which got him in some serious (practical) trouble.

21...c4? (21...f6! had to be played - Le Quang) 22.b3! after which White opened the c-file with a huge positional plus. Sadly for Le Quang, he let his advantage slip away and the Russian managed to flee into a drawish endgame where his bishop and rook proved sufficiently solid against Le Quang's queen. A narrow escape for Kramnik!

Le Quang - Kramnik (photo by Georgios Souleidis)

Ponomariov never really got into trouble against Leko in yet another Catalan variation. Optically, it looked a bit tricky for Black at some point, but Pono was apparently just in time to free his bishop and get his counterplay going.

Leko - Ponomariov (photo by Georgios Souleidis)

Obviously, it's not Peter Leko's tournament so far, especially not after Naiditsch passed him in the standings today.

Actually, the German was "lucky" to beat Mamedyarov - except that there is no such thing as luck in chess, of course. Still, it must be admitted that White was better during most of the game. Consider the position after Naiditsch has just played 24...Qb2:

Here, the machine suggests 25.Qd3! with a big advantage in all lines. On 25...Qb7, White continues with the logical 26.Ng4 and 27.f4 with a strong attack, while 25...Rc6 runs into 26.Rab1 Rxc1+ 27.Bxc1 Qa2 28.Ng4 Kg7 29.Rb7 with a very nasty initiative for White. However, Mamedyarov played 25.Nf3 after which Black seemed to be OK again, until Black mistakenly exchanged rooks and White was back in the driver's seat.

Mamedyarov again decided to make a knight move (32.Nh2) but 32.Bxg5! looks absolutely killing since after multiple captures on g5, the black rook will be left hanging on d8, and after 32...Qb6 White has the extremely difficult-to-find 33.Bf6! Rg8 34.Ng5+!! followed by Qd3+ and Rxd7 with a winning game.

Instead of this, Mamedyarov totally ruined his day when a few moves later he committed a really horrible blunder:

Now 36.Qd3+ looks about equal, but here the Azeri suddenly played 36.Rxd7?? and resigned furiously without waiting for the obvious. A small tragedy, indeed.

Mamedyarov - Naiditsch (photo by Georgios Souleidis)

Standings after 6 rounds:

1. Ponomariov 4 2. Le Quang 3,5 3. Mamedyarov, Kramnik 3 5. Naiditsch 2,5 6. Leko 2

Games start daily at 15.00 CET and can be followed live here.

Dortmund Games round 6

Game viewer by ChessTempo


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