1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 dxc4 5.a4 c5?
likes to experiment in 1.d4 d5 openings but this combined with his next
move, seems to me a highly dubious choice suited only for surprise. I
really can't find a defense for black after the 7.e4 so i think that the
question mark is justified.
[5...Bf5; 5...Bg4; 5...Na6]
[6...e6 also leads to a better position for white]
[7.e4! is an excellent gambit.In fact i haven't been able to find
anything resembling a defence for black :
8.Nxe4 Bxe4 9.Bxc4 With the terrible threat Bb5+ and Ne5. 9...Nd7 (9...e6?
10.Bb5+) 10.0–0 Bxf3 (10...g6 11.Ng5) 11.Qxf3 g6 12.Bg5!
Making stronger the threat of d6. 12...Qb6 13.Rfe1
will not make it to the 20th move.;
B) 7...Bxe4 8.Bxc4
9.Nxe4 Nxe4 10.Bb5+ Nd7 11.Ne5;
B2) 8...Nbd7 9.0–0
9...Bxf3 10.Qxf3 g6 11.d6! is the most straightforward (11.Bf4)
11...exd6 12.Re1+ Be7 13.Bh6 and the game will soon end, for
example: 13...Ne5 14.Rxe5 dxe5 15.Bb5+ Nd7 16.Rd1;
B2b) 9...g6 10.Ng5 Bf5 11.d6 e6 12.Nb5 is another way of
punishing black for the omission of b5.;
This wastes another tempo but the check from b5 is desicive in many
9...Bxf3 10.Qxf3 g6 11.Bf4 Bg7 12.d6±;
B3b) 9...Nbd7 10.Re1 Bg6 11.Bf4 (11.a5) 11...Nb6
B3c) 9...g6 10.Re1± (10.Ng5 Bf5 11.Qb3±) 10...Bf5 (10...Bxf3
11.Qxf3 Bg7 12.d6) 11.Qb3 and black's situation is just
Now black has a comfortable position.
exd5 9.Nxd5 Nc6N
This simple move is improves from an older example in which black forced
an ending that was slightly worse for him.
[9...Be4?! 10.Nc3 Qxd1+ 11.Kxd1 Bg6 12.Nd5! Nxd5 13.Bxd5 Nc6 14.Bxc6+
bxc6 15.Ne5! Vulfson-Alatortsev,Kuibyshev 1942]
The only move to worry black. [10.0–0 Be7! (10...Be4?! Black
has no reason to force an endgame that is slightly worse for him. 11.Nc3
Qxd1 12.Rxd1² Bc2 13.Re1 Rd8 14.e4 Bd3 15.Bb5!; 10...Bd6!? is also
good) and 11.Qb3?! fails after 11...0–0! 12.Qxb7? Nxd5 13.Qxc6
Nb4–+ and the white queen gets trapped.]
[I think that 11.0–0! was much better so as to keep the
centralised knight on d5 and to avoid opening the g-file for black's
rook. 11...Ne4!? Consistent with black's general opening idea of
controlling e4 and thus restrict Bc1. However the knight's position on
e4 can be challenged.
(Another option is 11...Nxd5 12.Bxd5 Nb4; 11...Na5? is
tactically suspect. After 12.Qb5!± black has serious problems)
12.Rd1! (12.Nh4?! Be6 13.f3 Nd6) 12...Bd6 13.Ne1! planning
f3-e4, with a very unclear and interesting position.]
[Now 12.0–0? loses the exchange after 12...Na5 13.Qc3 Nxc4 14.Qxc4
postpones castling for one move and activates his rook first. As it will
become clear after the correct 13.0–0–0 he could just enter a
comfortable ending with 13..Be6 so there is no need to hurry to castle.
[After 12...0–0–0 white would have to play 13.0–0–0! with a
complicated position(13.Bxf7? is bad because of 13...Ne5; while
13.0–0?! Bh3! is scaring to say the least...) ]
White really pushes his luck. It was imperative to look after his king.
[13.0–0–0! should have been preffered. Now black seems to experience
some problems because he can't castle due to the weakness of f7 while
Bc3 is coming.
However after 13...Be6! black obtains excellent chances. The exchange of
bishops relieves black from the pressure on f7 and the black queens will
be posted beatifully at e6. Then white must either exchange queens
repairing black's pawn structure or else the black queen will have
future plans of landing on a2 or b3 making life difficult for the white
king. An important factor in the position is the activity of the rook on
g8 who can even participate on a queenside attack with ..Rg4. (13...Rxg2?
Qxe6 is also very ok for black. Now white must enter to a balanced
ending because if he takes b7 with 15.Qxb7?! the initiative passes to
black: 15...Rb8 16.Qa6 (16.Qc7 Rg4 17.Bc3 Rxa4) 16...Rb6! (16...Rxg2
is also possible but i like the immediate transfer of Rg8 to the
queenside. White now faces the combined attack of black's pieces
against his king. On the other hand the black king despite being in
the centre isn't worrying at all.) 17.Qd3 Rg4!
18.Bc3 Qa1+ 19.Kd2 Qxa4 20.Ke2±)
Qa2! 19.Bc3 (19.Qa3 Qxa3 20.bxa3 c4–+) 19...Bh6+! This is
the shortcoming of 18.e4. 20.Nd2 Nb4! 21.Bxb4 (21.Qb1 Qb3 is
also without hope.) 21...Rxb4 and white must lose his queen:
A2) 18.Bc3 18...Rxa4 and black has a strong attack 19.Qxh7? is
suicidial 19...Nb4! (19...f5 is also possible) 20.Bxb4
Qc4+! The most forcing idea - found by Fritz 21.Bc3 (There is
also no escape with 21.Kd2 Rd6+ 22.Ke1 Rxd1+ 23.Kxd1 Ra1+ 24.Kd2
Qxb4+; 21.Qc2 Ra1+ 22.Kd2 Rd6+) 21...Rxb2! 22.Qd3 (22.Kxb2
Ra2+) 22...Ra1+ 23.Kxb2 Qa2#;
14...Bxc4 15.Qxc4 Qe6 16.Qxe6+ (16.Qb5 Rxg2 17.Qxb7 Rb8 18.Qc7
Rxf2) 16...fxe6 and the endgame must be evaluated 'equal'. However
if I had to choose i would take black: after protecting f6 he can
start pushing his queenside pawns ..b6,..a6,..b5 probably combined
with ..Rg4. 17.Bxf6?! Rxg2 18.Bh4 Rg4!]
has no castling options and the hanging doubled pawns f6,f7 is a small
consolation for this.
[14.Bxf6 Be7 15.Bxe7 Qxe7 seems hopeless for white as his king is
stuck in the centre and all the black pieces are attacking.]
Most probably Van Wely overlooked black's next move.
16.Nxf5 Nd3+ 17.Kf1 Rxf2+ 18.Kg1 Kb8!
moves in the middle of an attack usually create an impression but this
one is easy because white's position is completely demolished and his
only threat was Be6.
[19.e4 loses beatifully with 19...c4! 20.Qxc4 Bc5; 19.Be6 Qc6 20.Nh4
Bh6! and e3 cannot be protected]
20.h4 Bd6 21.Rf1 Rg8+!