Upsets in World Cup 2021

20/7/2021 – GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov has won his first match in the 3rd round of the World Cup 2021. However, he is defeated by GM Haik Martirosyan in the 2nd game to even the score. Now they are playing for tiebreak. I am fascinated by this game because it illustrated how small weakness can be a reason or it is enough to lose a game. You can never say it is a bluff move to scare a young GM (Martirosyan), to make positions complicated. But for a Karpov minded young chess GM, this will not work.

The Grunfeld Defense: Symmetrical Variation  is a solid set-up  vs. 1. d4.  This type of opening is a wait and see play for both players to make weaknesses at both flanks. It is dependent on judgment if player wants to close or open the position to create an attack or just to hold grip not allowing each other to get the upper hand.

CHESS BLOG No. 7 / Date: 20th July 2021

Grunfeld Defense: Symmetrical Variation  (D79)  Chess Opening Classification

GM Haik M Martirosyan vs. GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov

(Event: 2021 World Cup- Russia  – Round 3, Game 2)

1: d4       Nf6   
2: c4       g6
3: Nf3    Bg7   
4: g3       c6    
5: Bg2    0-0

6. 0-0     d5   
7. cd5    cd5     

8. Nc3   Nc6       (The Grunfeld Defense: Symmetrical Variation)       

9.   Ne5  Bf5   (White’s Ne5 is a bold statement that white wants war).
10. Nc6  bc6      

11.  Bf4   Nh5   (Knight at h5 is akward) 

12. Be3!  c5  (Black has cracked not realizing white has set up a counter attack)
13. Nxd5  e6
14. Nf4   cxd4  

15. Nh5  gxh5

I always tell my students to check pawn structures to detect weakness on opponents position using “Visualizing Endgame Outcome method.

16: Bd2    Rc8 
17: Bb4    Re8

18: Rc1    Qb6 
19: Qa4   d3  (Black tries to complicate the position).

20: exd3 Bxd3
21: Rfd1  Bb5

22: Qb3  Bd4 
23: Be1   e5 (black has made a mistake here)

24: Bd5   Kg7
25: Bf7    Rf8

26: Rc8   Rc8
27: Bh5   Rf8 (White is 2 pawns up)

28: Bf3   Qa6

29: Rc1  (1-0)  Analyze this position.

FMJesse
Author: FMJesse

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