Candidates Tournament 2014
Candidates Round 8 : Tension and tiredness !
The Top-game of this 8th round was of course the clash between co-leaders Aronian and Anand.
Aronian innovated quickly with 3.Qb3, after what Anand thought quite long in order to find a position where the Queen’s position would be useless. Finally he opted for a Benoni-like structure with 3…d4, involving a pawn sacrifices.
Later, Aronian explained he had planned and analyzed this possibility but misjudged Black’s compensation. Indeed, Black’s development is very fluid and Vishy obtained quickly a position similar to the Czech Benoni (1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 e5 4.Nc3 d6 5.e4) with a pawn down but the strong c5 square for his pieces while White’s pieces are struggling to find their good squares.
But the game ended quickly when both players decided to repeat moves and share the point. Many, here and there, cried out scandal but both players had only met with the position’s demand, as deciding to play on, means White have to tolerate a strong knight on c5 or Black refuses to occupy this square so both has to play a bad move !
But we can notice that Black could have improve his play by 8...Nf6, planning to push quickly his pawn in the center.
A good operation for Anand who neutralized a dangerous opponent with the black pieces and keeps an edge over him in case of final tie (the first tie-break is the direct confrontation), but the tournament is still long to go and probably some more wins will be needed to win the tournament.
Andreïkin obtained the great h4 square for his Queen and could control White’s initiative, Kramnik could win his pawn back but the opposite colored bishops and the few material remaining on the board didn’t leave any chance to play for the win.
A bad operation for Vladimir who missed a golden opportunity to catch up the leaders but stay close at ½ point.
Svidler-Karjakin is the game of the day analyzed by our team
A very strange round, probably the less good in term of chess quality but it’s obvious that tiredness and tension begin to be felt, and also probably playing in an empty playing hall! (remember London 2013 !)
See the game Svidler - Karjakin annotated by the Chess Anyone's team : click here.