Tiviakov,S - Kasparov,G [B23]
Corus2001 Wijk aan Zee 13.01.2001

[Aggelos Vouldis]


1.e4 c5 2.Nc3 d6 3.f4 g6 4.Nf3 Bg7 5.Bc4 Nc6 

Black must decide how he will develop his kingside. The choice is between ..e6,..Nge7 and the immediate ..Nf6. Black usually prefers the first option because it offers better control of the central squares and gives him the chance to counter white's kingside attack with a timely ..f5. The move 5..Nc6 is a good introduction to this plan because once black plays ..e6 he must be sure that white cannot turn the game into an open sicilian with d2-d4. 
It is interesting to note that in the next round against Fedorov, Kasparov chose to develop with ..Nf6 against an f4 attack. However in this case white had developed his king's bishop with fianchetto so it wasn't so important to block the diagonal a2-g8 by playing ..e6. 

6.00 e6 7.d3 Nge7 8.Qe1 
An important move in white's set-up: the queen heads towards the kingside while reinforcing the break e4-e5 and preventing ..d5 for one move due to the pin on the e-file. 

8...00 9.Bb3?! 

This is a critical point. Tiviakov decides to play solidly but in fact his choice is passive and gives black the chance to exchange the Bb3 and stir the game to a position in which white hasn't many active possibilities. [9.f5! is the only move to worry black, and leads to complicated positions.] 

9...Na5 10.Be3 
[Tiviakov decides to transfer his bishop to h4 via f2. However I would prefer a rapid mobilization of white's forces with 10.Bd2 b6 11.Qh4 Bb7 12.Rae1 Nxb3 13.axb3 Qd7 

A) 14.f5 exf5 15.Ng5 (15.Bh6 f6! is a typical defensive motive in such positions) 15...h5 (15...h6?! 16.Nh3 lands black in trouble)
B) 14.Nd1!? Intending Bc3 or Nf2] 

10...b6 

It is important that Kasparov doesn't hurry to take on b3 so as not to give white any additional possibilities. [like 10...Nxb3?! 11.axb3 b6 12.d4! and white is at least equal 12...Bb7 13.Rd1!] 

11.Bf2 
As i said before, i think this plan is time-consuming and doesn't improve much white's position. After black plays ..Bb7,..Nxb3,..Qd7 and ..f5, the bishop's functionality at h4 is questionable to say the least. Again, bringing the queen and the Ra1 into play seems more logical. [11.Qh4 Bb7 12.Rae1 Nxb3 13.axb3 Qd7 (13...d5 is premature 14.Bc1) 14.Bc1 (14.d4?! f5! destroys white's centre and gives black a clear positional advantage.) 14...f5 and black is again very comfortable but i think that white is better compared to the actual continuation.]

11...Bb7 12.Bh4 Nxb3 
It's time to take the bishop so as to play ..Qd7 and not be harassed by Ba4. 

13.axb3 Qd7 14.Qg3 f5 15.Rae1 Nc6 16.exf5 gxf5! 

This is the typical choice in such positions. Black keeps an elastic pawn structure with plans for future expansion in the centre. Compared to positions from the closed sicilian, black here has the added possibility of launching a strong attack through the g-file. It goes without saying that the opening phase of the game has ended clearly in black's favour. White is in the role of the defender without any visible counterplay while black has the simple plan of doubling on the g-file and unmask the Bb7 with ..Nd4 after which the pressure on g2 will be intolerable for white. [16...exf5?! This throws away black's advantage. 17.Nd5 Rae8 18.Rxe8 Rxe8 (18...Qxe8?! 19.Re1) 19.Nf6+ Bxf6 20.Bxf6=; 16...Rxf5 is playable but clearly worse than 16..gxf5.] 

17.Re2 Rae8 18.Rfe1 
The doubling of the rooks on the e-file has mainly preventive character so as not to leave black completely free to employ his forces as he would have liked. 

18...Kh8 19.Qh3 Nd4 
After the exchange of the knights black will be able to place his rook on g6 combining defence on e6 and attack on g2. 

20.Nxd4 Bxd4+ 

Here black had to choose between two equally attractive possibilities. Taking with the bishop shows that he intends to concentrate on the attack from the g-file. He could also have taken with the c-pawn planning to exploit his strong centre. Kasparov's choice was probably made considering the vulnerability of the point g2 (all black's pieces except the Bd4 can easily attack it!) however 20..cxd4 led to an equally difficult position for white . [20...cxd4 21.Nd1 (21.Nb1?! e5 22.Nd2 Qc6 23.Nf3 e4! and the game is over) 21...e5 22.Nf2 It is necessary for white to stop ..e4. 

A) 22...exf4 This seemed good at first but then i found that 23.Ne4 was an adequate answer. 

A1) 23.Re7 Rxe7 24.Bxe7 (24.Rxe7 Re8! is the key in black's idea.) 24...Re8 (24...Rg8 threatening ..Be5 is also easily winning) 25.Qh4 (forced) 25...Qc6 26.Qg5 Qxc2 27.h4! The only chance, relieving himself from back-rank mates and trying to create some counterplay. 27...Qc7! It's time for the queen to return back. The threat now is ..h6 winning the Be7. (27...Qxb3 28.h5 h6 29.Qxf5 is probably not so simple) 28.h5 h6 29.Qf6 An ingenious last attempt but the ensuing ending is lost. 29...Bxf6 30.Bxf6+ Kg8! Black must be careful here. 31.Rxe8+ Kf7 32.Re7+ Qxe7 33.Bxe7 Kxe7 34.Nh3 f3 and the rest is simple.; 
A2)
23.Be7 Rg8; 
A3)
23.Ne4! Activates the knight and creates trouble for black. The immediate threat is Nf6!. 23...Qc6 24.Ng5 Re3 25.Rxe3 fxe3 26.Ne6 and white has serious chances.; 

B) 22...Qf7! The simplest.The queen comes at g6 eyeing both at g2 and e4.Black's position is positionally winning. 23.Bg5 (23.Bg3 Qg6) 23...Qg6 24.Nh1 h6 25.Ng3 e4 26.Bh4 d5 and I don't expect white to survive here.] 

21.Kh1 Rg8 22.Nd1 Rg6 23.c3 

This is necessary in order to force black to close temporarily the g-file. At least the bishop on h4 shows some functionality, denying the square f6 from Bd4. Of course white pays a price for this because he weakens his queenside pawns something that will become evident later. 23...Bg7 24.Ne3 It is psychologically relieving in such positions to create a threat (f5). 

24...Rf8 
[24...Rg8 is also possible ] 

25.Bg5 
Closes the g-file only temporarily but white has little to do in any case. 

25...h6 26.Bh4 b5! 

Black wants to create a central outpost for his bishop on d4. 

27.Nf1 b4 28.cxb4 cxb4 29.Ne3 Rg8 30.Bg3 Bd4 31.Nc4 R8g7 32.Qh5 Kh7 33.Ne3 Qb5 34.Rd2 

Both here and in his next move, white avoids playing Nc4 as this would offer the black queen a dominant position on d5. However as it is black can always win prosaically by exchanging on e3 and playing ..Bd5. Black takes b3, returns his bishop to d5 and just pushes the a-pawn. 
This technical solution would have been chosen surely by Karpov. Kasparov intends to exploit the combined pressure on g2 more directly. [34.Nc4 Qd5 35.Qh3 (35.Nd2 Bxb2) 35...h5 36.Qh4 Bf6 37.Qh3 h4] 

34...a6 
Waiting to see how white reacts in order to decide his further course of action. White's position is completely passive and he just holds. The motives that can be used by black here involve either the break ..e5 or the push of the h-pawn or finally an invasion of the black queen from the a or c files. 

35.Qh3 
Now black can also use his h-pawn but there were not better alternatives. 
[35.Nc4 Qd5 36.Rde2 e5! 37.Qxf5 (37.fxe5 f4) 37...Rf7! (37...exf4 38.Qxf4) 38.Qh5 (38.Qe4 Qc5) 38...exf4 39.Qxd5 Bxd5 and ..f3 follows.; 35.Ree2 Qa5! Threatening to win with 36..Bxe3 (see 36.Re1) (A simple win is 35...Bxe3 36.Rxe3 Bd5) 36.Re1 (36.Rd1 Qa2! captures b3 and white's position falls apart.; 36.Nc4 Qa1+ 37.Re1 Qxe1+! 38.Bxe1 Rxg2) 36...Bxe3 37.Rxe3 Qa1+ 38.Qd1 (38.Re1 Rxg3! 39.Rxa1 Rxg2+; 38.Rd1 Qxb2) 38...Qxd1+ 39.Rxd1 h5!+ and despite the exchange of queens, mate soon follows.] 

35...h5!

 White can never capture this pawn because ..Rh6 follows and he loses instantly. 

36.Ree2 h4! 37.Be1 
[37.Re1 Bxe3 38.Rxe3 Kg8! 39.Qxh4 Qb6! The threat to the rook on e3 is combined with the control of d8 square thus making the move ..Rh7 desicive as far as the fate of the white queen is concerned. (39...Rh7? 40.Qd8+) 40.Rde2 Rh7] 

37...Bxe3 
The most important defender of g2 is eliminated. Black must remain careful because after g2 is captured there is an idea of a perpetual check from h4 and d8. 

38.Qxe3?! 
This makes things easy for Kasparov. [ Probably Tiviakov had some time-pressure here because he is a tough player in defense and in normal circumstances he would have surely preffered 38.Rxe3! 

A) 38...Bxg2+ offers white the draw in a golden plate. 39.Rxg2 Rxg2 40.Qxh4+; 
B)
38...Rxg2 39.Qxh4+ Kg8 

B1) 40.Rxg2 Bxg2+ (40...Rxg2 41.Qd8+ is a draw.) 41.Kg1 is also possible but giving the check from d8 first seems more logical.; 
B2)
40.Qd8+ 40...Kf7 41.Rxg2 Bxg2+ (41...Rxg2 42.Qc7+ and black cannot avoid the perpetual check because 42...Kg6?? loses to 43.Rxe6+) 42.Kg1 Bb7+ 43.Rg3! After the exchange of the rooks, the black king is left completely unprotected. 43...Rxg3+ (43...Qc5+ 44.Kf1 and black cannot avoid the perpetual check.) 44.Bxg3 Qc6 45.Kf2 Qf3+ 46.Ke1 Qe3+ Despite the fact that he takes d3 with check, black is unable to win due to the constant threat of perpetual check against his king. 47.Kd1 Bf3+ (47...Qxd3+ 48.Kc1) 48.Kc2 Qe2+ 49.Kb1 Qxd3+ 50.Ka2 and it's a draw.; 

C) 38...Qc6; 
D)
38...Qd5; 
E)
38...Qc5! Taking on g2 is not desicive as it appears at first sight, so black should play a move with his queen because it's his only piece that is not optimally placed. Moving her to either c6 or d5 or c5 is probably enough to win. 39.Rg3 (39.Ree2 Qc1 leads by transposition to the game's continuation.; 39.d4 Qc1) 39...Rg4! 40.Rxg4 Rxg4 41.Bxh4 Qc1+ 42.Be1+ Kg8 43.Qe3 (43.Re2 Bxg2+ 44.Qxg2 Rxg2 45.Kxg2 and black can win as he pleases for example: 45...Qc6+ 46.Kg3 Qd5) 43...Bxg2+ 44.Kg1 Bh3+ 45.Kf2 (45.Kh1 Qc6+!) 45...Rg2+ winning.] 

38...Qc6 39.Qh3 Qc1 40.Qxh4+ 

Now white loses his queen but after other moves, black could just play ..Rg4,..Bd5 and take on g2 only after moving his king to g8. [40.Re3 Rg4 41.Rde2 Bd5 (41...Rxf4 is not bad either) 42.Rf2 (42.Rg3 Kg8; 42.Rd2 Qxd2!) 42...Kg8 43.Rfe2 Rxg2] 

40...Rh6 41.Rc2 Qd1 42.Rcd2 Qb1 43.Qf2 Rxg2 44.Qxg2 Bxg2+ 45.Kxg2 Qa2 46.Bg3 Qxb3 47.Rc2 Rg6 48.Red2 a5 49.Kf2 a4 50.Rc6 a3 51.bxa3 bxa3 52.Ke2 e5 53.fxe5 f4 01

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