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Candidates tournament 2014

March 16, 2014

Today is a rest day in this year's Candidates tournament.

Of course, chess fans are served brilliantly nowadays with several sites to watch it live (my preference is and then GM analysis posted within hours of the games having been played (again, my favourite of favorites is

When I have time, I also like to look at the game of the day videos on the Internet Chess Club, ICC, and this morning, before the family were up, I watched the videos for the GOTDs of the first three rounds.

I am largely indifferent as to who wins the tournament. I would like it to be Lev Aronian, but he has got of to a shaky start; Vladimir Kramnik, whose energetic play I find a joy to watch; Peter Svidler or Veselin Topalov too; and of course Vishy Anand, who has got off to a superb start, but somehow I can't see him winning, or, if he did, of defeating Magnus Carlsen afterwards.

Two of the three GOTD videos were by my favourite present, Alex Yermolinsky. Alex's commentaries are always deeply instructive, and his video of Svidler-Andreikin was particularly so (as was his explanation of the use of the bishop pair in Anand-Aronian).

I watched parts of Svidler-Andreikin live, and didn't really understand it: Alex has helped me understand some of the subtleties and the great energy and precision of Peter's play. After watching the video, I set the pieces up and looked a bit more into something that had puzzled me, which Alex covers briefly, namely what would have happened if black had taken on e4 after white's Qg3. My analysis shows that it would have been a better defence.


In the position below, white has just played Qd3-g3, unorotecting the Pe4, met by Qg5*g3.

I would have played 1…Ne4 on general principles, not wanting my pawns doubled (white replied Nf6+! in the above position, though the exclam is excessive, since it must be best to break black's pawns). All I would have needed to do is see that the N can't be encircled when on g5.

Of course, chess is always, move by move, a game of choices. Alex's comments are included in the attached game file in which I some analysis of my own to this great game. Had I been playing white there is no chance whatsoever that I would not have frittered the game away: Peter by contrast played a series of great machine-best moves. I hope he does well in the remaining rounds.


From → Chess

One Comment
  1. Reblogged this on Chess Musings and commented:
    So far the Candidates tournament of 2014 has not disappointed. Here is some more analysis of the event so far:

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