Friday, 8 March 2013

Revisiting Linares 1998

Today is the day when Anand won his first Linares title in 1998 (yeah Carlsen was just 8 years old!). Anand again won Linares nearly a decade later in 2007 and 2008!
The "Wimbledon of Chess" was played from 22-Feb-1998 to 9-Mar-1998.

XV Ciudad de Linares (ESP), 1998 --------------------------------------------------------------- 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 --------------------------------------------------------------- 1 Viswanathan Anand g IND ** 1= 0= == 1= =1 =1 7½ 2 Alexei Shirov g ESP 0= ** == =1 10 10 11 7 3 Garry Kasparov g RUS 1= == ** == == == == 6½ 4 Vladimir Kramnik g RUS == =0 == ** =1 == 1= 6½ 5 Peter Svidler g RUS 0= 01 == =0 ** 10 =1 5½ 6 Vassily Ivanchuk g UKR =0 01 == == 01 ** 0= 5 7 Veselin Topalov g BUL =0 00 == 0= =0 1= ** 4

Here are some interesting games from each round.

Round 1 - Shirov 0-1 Anand, rest drawn
Shirov - Anand, 0-1
A rare concentration of heavy pieces around a pawn!

Shirov - Anand, 0-1
Final winning position
I consider this a model game where the two Rooks nicely outplay the White Queen.

Round 2 - All games decisive. Anand 1-0 Svidler. Ivanchuk blunders!

Ivanchuk - Shirov, 0-1
Position after Ivanchuk's 30.Rf3??
Black to play and win (solution at the bottom)

Round 3 - Kasparov defeats Anand, Ivanchuk blunders again!

Svidler - Ivanchuk, 1-0
Position after Ivanchuk's 47...Nb7
White to play and win

Round 4, 5 - All games drawn

Round 6 - Shirov on fire, rest drawn

Shirov - Svidler, 1-0
Position after Black's 25...g6
White to play and win

Round 7 - Topalov wins his first, Ivanchuk loses his 3rd

Ivanchuk - Topalov, 0-1
Position after Black's 51...Kg5
Ivanchuk chose the fastest way to lose and
played 52. Rxh4 and resigned immediately

Round 8 - All drawn
Round 9 - Ivanchuk defeats Shirov, rest drawn.

Shirov - Ivanchuk, 0-1
A position that could have been!

Round 10
Topalov - Shirov, 0-1
How did Shirov choose to end the game?
Black to play and win

Ivanchuk - Svidler, 1-0
Can White stop the Black pawn on a3?
White to play and win

Round 11 - Svidler 1-0 Topalov, Shirov 1-0 Kramnik
Round 12 - Kramnik 1-0 Svidler, Anand's master piece!

Ivanchuk - Anand, 0-1
Can you find a win for Black?
Black to play and win

Round 13 (last round) - Svidler 1-0 Shirov, Anand 1-0 Topalov

Anand - Topalov, 1-0
Position after Black's 27...c5
After Anand's Nb6+, Topalov gave up his Queen
and went on to lose 50 moves later

And thus Anand edged out Shirov to win Linares 1998!

Tid bits
  • Mighty Kasparov (2825) could only win one game and drew the rest of them to remain undefeated!
  • Shirov (placed 2nd) won the most games (five)

Solutions
Ivanchuk - Shirov
30... Rxe4 0-1

Svidler - Ivanchuk
48. Qxe5 dxe5 49. Rxd7 1-0

Shirov - Svidler
26. Bd7 Rd8 27. Be6 Re8 28. Qg5 1-0

Topalov - Shirov
47... Bh3! 48. gxh3 Kf5 49. Kf2 Ke4 50. Bxf6 d4 51. Be7 Kd3
52. Bc5 Kc4 53. Be7 Kb3 0-1

Ivanchuk - Svidler
47. Bc8 Kf7 48. h6 a2 49. Bxe6+ Kxe6 50. h7 a1=Q 51. h8=Q
and White went on to win in few more moves 1-0

Ivanchuk - Anand
21... Bxd5 22. exd5 Rxc2!! 23. Kxc2 Qxa2 24. f4 Rc8+
25. Kd2 Bxf4+ 26. Ke2 Qxb2+ 27. Kf3 Rc1 0-1

Download these games