Morozevich beats Svidler in last round Russian Championship

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Morozevich beats Svidler in last round Russian ChampionshipIn the last round of the Russian Championship Super Final, Alexander Morozevich defeated Peter Svidler, who had already secured the title yesterday. Vladimir Kramnik beat Alexander Galkin after yet again sacrificing a piece with the black pieces. We spoke briefly to Svidler on Skype, while he was in the train back to St. Petersburg.

General info

The Super Final of the 64th Russian Championship for men took place August 7-15 (rest day on August 12) at the Botvinnik Central Chess Club in Moscow. It was an 8-player, single round-robin. The time control was 90 minutes for the first 40 moves followed by 30 minutes to finish the game, with 30 seconds per move from move one. Vladimir Kramnik, Alexander Morozevich, Sergey Karjakin, Alexander Grischuk, Ian Nepomniachtchi, Peter Svidler, Artyom Timofeev and Alexander Galkin played.

Round 7

Thus far undefeated, tournament winner Peter Svidler suddenly lost without a real fight to Alexander Morozevich in the last round of the Super Final. It would be too easy, however, to conclude that he had been less focused because of the fact that he already secured first place on Sunday. "Nah. I just went mad for half an hour. It had nothing to do with the tournament situation," Svidler told us.

Svidler goes down, but wins the Russian Championship Super Final anyway

Svidler goes down, but wins the Russian Championship Super Final anyway

Things went wrong quickly after the opening - a Grünfeld, Russian System (5.Qb3) with 7...a6. Although the natural 13...Nxc5 had led to a draw in a correspondence game, 13...Ne5 was still fine, according to Svidler. "15...Nxf3+ is a draw. I went for this line being totally sure that White MUST play 20.Be2." A miscalculation which cost him dearly. The very natural 20.Ke2, followed by the strong 21.Bb7! gave White a huge advantage in the ending, and Morozevich gave his opponent no chance.

Morozevich plays yet another excellent tournament

Morozevich plays yet another excellent tournament

However, the game of the round was Alexander Galkin vs Vladimir Kramnik. It is quite amazing that the former World Champion, who we've called 'Kramnik 2.0' a while ago, seems to have broadened his chess style even more. For the third time in just a few weeks, he went for a long-term piece sacrifice with Black. Finally, this Tal-like strategy was successful. Alexander Galkin succumbed to the pressure at move 30 in a position where White might still be been able to hold it.

Vladimir Kramnik - ehm, 3.0?

Vladimir Kramnik - ehm, 3.0?

Both Timofeev-Grischuk and Nepomniachtchi-Karjakin ended in a draw, which meant that Morozevich finished clear second with 4.5/7. He is winning 43 (!) rating points and is now 17th in the live ratings, one place behind... Svidler. Peter SvidlerIt was the 6th Russian title for Svidler, after winning in 1994, 1995, 1997, 2003 and 2008. "After [the World Team Championship in] China anyone could be excused asking if I still knew how to play," he said. To our question whether he did anything special as far as preparation was concerned (apart from the hard work he did for Grischuk in Kazan), he answered: "I don't think I prepared for more than an hour to any single game. I decided to just play and it worked out fine." Kramnik eventually finished shared third with Grischuk and Karjakin, on '+1'. The top two Russian players have switched places again; Kramnik is back to 4th place and Karjakin 5th. This is probably how the September 1st FIDE rating list will look like as well. The next big event is the FIDE World Cup, with the first round scheduled for August 28th. The top participants are Karjakin, Ivanchuk, Mamedyarov, Ponomariov, Gashimov, Grischuk, Radjabov, Kamsky, Svidler, Jakovenko, Vitiugov, Almasi, Vallejo, Navara, Vachier-Lagrave, Dominguez, Wang Hao, Leko, Moiseenko, Le Quang Liem, Adams, Shirov, Jobava, Caruana, Nepomniachtchi, Bacrot, Wang Yue, Tomashevsky, Efimenko, Malakhov, Wojtaszek, Sutovsky, Movsesian, Polgar, Fressinet, Eljanov, Berkes, Andreikin and Morozevich.

Games round 7


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Pictures © Russian Chess Federation

Russian Championship Super Final 2011 | Schedule & results

Round 108.08.1113:00 CET Rest day12.08.1113:00 CET
Round 209.08.1113:00 CET Round 513.08.1113:00 CET
Kramnik1-0Timofeev Grischuk½-½Kramnik
Nepomniachtchi½-½Galkin Galkin½-½Karjakin
Morozevich1-0Grischuk Timofeev0-1Svidler
Svidler½-½Karjakin Nepomniachtchi1-0Morozevich
Round 310.08.1113:00 CET Round 614.08.1113:00 CET
Karjakin1-0Kramnik Kramnik½-½Morozevich
Grischuk½-½Svidler Svidler1-0Nepomniachtchi
Galkin½-½Morozevich Karjakin1-0Timofeev
Timofeev½-½Nepomniachtchi Grischuk1-0Galkin
Round 411.08.1113:00 CET Round 715.08.1111:00 CET
Kramnik1-0Nepomniachtchi Galkin0-1Kramnik
Morozevich1-0Timofeev Timofeev½-½Grischuk
Svidler1-0Galkin Nepomniachtchi½-½Karjakin
Karjakin0-1Grischuk Morozevich1-0Svidler

Russian Championship Super Final 2011 | Round 7 (Final) Standings



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