Topalov, frequent victim of "K" brilliancies

Veselin Topalov seems to be the kind of player who makes his opponents playing brilliantly. Both Kramnik and Kasparov have won really beautiful duels against the Bulgarian: Vlad has even indicated his victory against Topalov in Monte Carlo, four years ago, as the best game he has played up to now (see http://www.lekokramnyik.hu/eng/ and click on “Players”). It’s really curious that this was a rapid blindfold challenge. About Garry, do you remember the game Kasparov-Topalov, Wijk aan Zee 1999? A really amazing victory by the Russian and former world champion, even if he said, after that: “I haven’t played my best game yet” (or something similar).
Well, here are the two games.

Kramnik,V -Topalov,V [B82], Monte Carlo (blindfold) 2003
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Be3 Nf6 7.f4 a6 8.Qf3 Qc7 9.0-0-0 Bd7 10.Nb3 Rc8 11.Kb1 b5 12.Bd3 Nb4 13.g4 Bc6 14.g5 Nd7
After 14...Nxe4!? 15.Bxe4 d5 16.g6!! hxg6 (16...dxe4 17.Qh3!) 17.Bxg6 d4 (17...fxg6 18.Nd4) 18.Qg4 White has a terrible attack.
15.Qf2 g6 16.Rhf1 Bg7 17.f5 Ne5 18.Bb6 Qd7 19.Be2! Qb7 20.Na5
White doesn't want to allow his opponent to castle.
20...Qb8 21.f6 Bf8 22.a3 Nxc2 23.Kxc2 Bxe4+ 24.Kb3 Ba8 25.Ba7 Qc7 26.Qb6 Qxb6 27.Bxb6 h6
After 27...Nd7 28.Bf2 h6 29.h4 d5 30.a4 White is better, but the game might have lasted much longer.
28.Nxb5! Kd7 29.Bd4 Bd5+ 30.Ka4 axb5+ 31.Bxb5+ Bc6
The best try was 31...Nc6, but White is winning anyway: 32.Bb6 Rb8 33.Rxd5 Bxb6 34.Nc4! Rb8 35.Ne5+ Kc7 36.Nxc6! Ra8+ 37.Na5 exd5 38.Rc1+ Kb8 39.Bd7 hxg5 40.Kb5 Bh6 41.Bg4! +-
32.Bxe5! Bxb5+ 33.Kxb5 Rc5+ 34.Kb6 Rxe5 35.Rc1 Rxa5 36.Rc7+! Kd8 37.Rfc1 Rc5 38.R1xc5 dxc5 39.Kc6!! 1-0
A very beautiful study-like position. Well, this is a pretty nice game, but I can’t believe it is the best Vlad has ever played…
And now here is Garry’s victory.

Kasparov,G – Topalov,V [B06], Wijk aan Zee 1999
1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.Be3 Bg7 5.Qd2 c6 6.f3 b5 7.Nge2 Nbd7 8.Bh6 Bxh6 9.Qxh6 Bb7 10.a3 e5 11.O-O-O Qe7 12.Kb1 a6 13.Nc1 O-O-O 14.Nb3 exd4 15.Rxd4 c5 16.Rd1 Nb6 17.g3 Kb8 18.Na5 Ba8 19.Bh3 d5! 20.Qf4+ Ka7 21.Rhe1 d4 22.Nd5 Nbxd5 23.exd5 Qd6 24.Rxd4!! cxd4?
The losing move. Black can equalize the position by 24...Kb6! (Kasparov) 25.Nb3 Bxd5.
The key move.
Even worst were 25...Qxe7?? 26.Qxd4+ Kb8 27.Qb6+ Bb7 28.Nc6+ Ka8 29.Qa7# and 25...Kb8? 26.Qxd4 Nd7 27.Bxd7 Bxd5 28.c4! Qxe7 29.Qb6+ Ka8 30.Qxa6+ Kb8 31.Qb6+ Ka8 32.Bc6+ Bxc6 33.Nxc6 Rd7 34.Nxe7 Rxe7 35.Qxb5 and White is winning.
26.Qxd4+ Kxa5
A forced move: 26...Qc5? 27.Qxf6+ Qd6 28.Qd4+ Qc5 29.Qf6+ Qd6 30.Be6!! +-
27.b4+ Ka4 28.Qc3
Much more stronger looked 28.Ra7!!
28...Qxd5 29.Ra7 Bb7 30.Rxb7 Qc4?
More stubborn was 30…Rhe8.
31.Qxf6 Kxa3?!
Black must play: 31...Rd1+, even if 32.Kb2 Ra8 33.Qb6 Qd4+ 34.Qxd4 Rxd4 35.Rxf7 White has very good winning chances.
32.Qxa6+ Kxb4 33.c3+!! Kxc3
After 33...Kb3? 34.Qb2+ Kxc3 35.Qb2+ Kd3 36.Bf1+ White wins easily.
34.Qa1+ Kd2 35.Qb2+ Kd1 36.Bf1!! Rd2 37.Rd7!! Rxd7 38.Bxc4 bxc4 39.Qxh8 Rd3 40.Qa8 c3 41.Qa4+ Ke1 42.f4 f5 43.Kc1! Rd2 44.Qa7! 1-0
A really fantastic combination. This games has been christened “Kasparov’s immortal”.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Amazing games!
Especially the Kasparov one! All those sacrifices, wow!!!! :o