12 round press conferences
Monday, 24 May 2010
After 12th round games grandmasters came to the press centre and answered to the journalist’s questions.
Gashimov vs. Teimour Radjabov
One can only dream about my position after the opening. White has a
healthy extra pawn and the rest should be a technical task. Maybe I
should have castled long, because my king would be safer on the
queenside, but after 15.0-0 White also stands better. After 30.g4 it
looked like the game ends in White’s favor, but then something strange
started to happen. After 36...Qe8 White’s position looks completely
winning, but I could not find a clear-cut way to win! Maybe I slipped it
away earlier, I don’t know.
Question: This game may have ended you quest for the candidates
– I disagree! First, there is one round to go, and anything can happen.
And second, I may receive an invitation as a player from the host
The opponent outwitted me in the opening. I mixed up the move order and
lost a pawn. Knowing Vugar’s technique, I was quite pessimistic about my
chances to save the game. I desperately needed some counterplay,
therefore I took an anti-positional decision to lock the kingside and
play a King’s Indian kind of structure. I wanted to get some pleasure
from the game, and after I played 22...Bf8, 25...h5, I actually cheered
up. During this game I constantly needed to look for creative ideas in
order to survive – I was quite sure that my position is objectively
lost. And then I found a strange idea 36...Qe8, which looks more
suitable for a blitz game. The resulting position is very suspicious for
Black, but I cannot find a win for White. And then I discovered the
perpetual check idea... To sum up, I got really lucky today.
Akopian vs. Vassily Ivanchuk
Akopian: This opening variation recently occurred in Wijk-ann-Zee in
Kramnik-Ivanchuk. I paid attention to this game during the preparation
and had clear understanding of possible plans. I am surprised that the
victory came so easily – I have a bad score against Vassily. The plan
that I employed in this game is not new: White ignores the d4-pawn and
concentrates on a kingside attack. Vassily played without confidence;
his 14...g6 only provokes my attack. And on the next move he should have
played 15...h5. After he missed this opportunity, my only problem was
to choose correctly from several good continuations. The final position
is so ugly for Black that Vassily just resigned. Well, this probably
just wasn’t his day...
Mamedyarov vs. Peter Leko
Mamedyarov: A played a decent game. I repeated the opening line
used against Jakovenko in the first round. Peter did not make the most
accurate move, and slowly I obtained a serious advantage. At some point I
could win in one move... I missed this opportunity, probably due to
tiredness, but nevertheless won the game in the end.
Peter Leko: This was a strange game. Losing to Eljanov killed my
chances to qualify for the candidates matches, which obviously affected
my motivation today. Of course, this is not a good excuse for my poor
play against Shakhriyar...
vs. Wang Yue
I went for the Gruenfeld Defense hoping for a sharp game: I still had a
slight chance to finish first. Unfortunately, I played inaccurately in
the opening. The c5-break must be carried out on the 7th move, before
castling. After this mistake I faced serious problems, and my opponent
had many interesting options. I think I equalized after 14...Nа4, but
even there he found a strong maneuver 17.Rd5, 19.Rс5. I played 20...Bc3
out of desperation. However, here Wang Yue suffered from his inclination
to play without risk. After the bishops were traded, my position
improved so much that I even got certain chances to play for a win!
Still, the game ended in a draw.
Svidler vs. Boris Gelfand
I recalled my “outstanding” results in the Petroff and decided to try a
different opening today. We followed the earlier game between Carlsen
and Gelfand, and White could not claim anything serious after the
opening. Since I couldn’t capture the d4-pawn, I shifted to the
kingside. 21.Qc1 was played in order to continue by 22.g4, however, it
also contained a trap, and Boris fell into it. Then I had to find the
accurate c2-с3 and open up the center. Generally I am satisfied with my
Gelfand: There is not much to add. Peter explained everything right.
Eljanov vs. Dmitry Jakovenko
I failed to get any advantage as White and decided that
the tournament situation does not oblige me to play recklessly for a
Jakovenko: There is nothing to say about the game. Pavel selected
a well-known line of the Catalan Opening, where White agrees to repeat
the moves early. Should I avoid it? Well, I played Black, and tomorrow’s
game is very important... So this game ended in a short and dull draw.
I want to note two critical spots. 13.Qd2 looks stronger than the move
actually played – 13.Qb1. Also, I really like Ruslan’s 20...Bc3. Apart
from that there was nothing interesting in this game.
Alekseev vs. Ernesto Inarkiev
Alekseev: I failed to get an advantage in the Slav Defense.
Ernesto had a comfortable game, but made a serious mistake on the 13th
move by 13...Rad8. After this White makes several obvious moves – 14.
g4, 15. f4, and I couldn’t see how Black can save his piece. After
18...Ng4 it seemed the game will end in a few moves. However, I played
inaccurately despite having enough time on the clock, and Black extended
his resistance. I coordinated my pieces and broke his defense only in
Inarkiev: My position after 13...Rad8 was extremely difficult, so
it is surprising that we played for so long.