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21

The short answer is: white's making it difficult for black to challenge the center with their central pawns. But that's not really revealing much, so let us dig deeper into this beautiful middlegame. The rook doubling is in fact part of a grander scheme that Kramnik has in mind. Once black commits to d6, Kramnik targets a very concrete objective: To ...


17

If I remember correctly, they either just sign the scoresheet or stop the clock first and then sign the scoresheet to indicate that they resigned. There is no handshake, and they do not speak to each other since the WCC2006 controversy. Here are two examples: Candidates Tournament 2014, Rd. 13 (Kramnik-Topalov 1-0), Norway Chess 2014, Rd. 6 (Topalov-Kramnik ...


10

8...f5 is no novelty. It is a well known line and has been played successfully before by strong players like Adams, Salov and Karjakin himself. 8...f5 is absolutely the correct move in the position, because it practically forces White to either surrender his strong central pawn on e5 or give up his strong light squared bishop for Black's knight on b4. I ...


9

The reason behind 25. Bh4 is very concrete, namely: With Rf8 coming next for black, white's bound to play Kg2 to unpin and cover f3 but without preparing it with Bh4 it leads to the following forcing variation: [title "25. Kg2 without Bh4"] [fen "r5k1/p5p1/2p1b2p/2b4P/5q2/5B2/P7/1R1QBK1R w - - 0 1"] 1. Kg2 Qg5+ 2. Bg3 Rd8 3. Qxd8+ Qxd8 4. Rb8 Bc8 5. Bg4 ...


7

According to the analysis of GM Mueller, white is winning. The game went: 65.Kf2 Kd4 66.Kf3 Kd3 67.g4 Kd2 68.Be6 Kd3. And now 69.g5! wins in all the lines, while Kramnik played 69.Kg3?, after which the ending is drawn. The entire game, with the analysis of GM Mueller: [FEN ""] [Event "2nd London Chess Classic"] [Site "London ENG"] [Date "2010.12.14"] [...


5

I'm no pro but I can offer my (potentially incorrect) thoughts. I always hear that you should capture toward the center, so was there a reason why Kramnik played 5..dxc6 instead of 5...bxc6? I know 5...dxc6 opens up the file for the black Queen, but that is all I see. Black gains development of both the queen AND the bishop. It's a free tempi which ...


4

It is not that the pawn on f5 achieves/helps this. As far as I understand Silman, what he means is that black can play 10...f5, which gives white a protected passed pawn and which weakens the square e6, because white's knights will eventually be driven away when black plays c5, etc Look at the position after 18.... Ne6 for instance. Black has achieved ...


4

White wants to move his King to g2, but if he does so right away then Black can play ...Qg5+. By playing Bh4, White covers the g5-square, allowing his King to seek haven on g2. Also, playing Bh4 activates the Bishop (it was extremely passive on e1), and allows White to connect his 3 major pieces after playing Kg2. Overall, just a great multi-purpose move in ...


3

It's just another way of saying the knights will not be able to find permanent posts in this position because of black's central pawns. f5 and d5 are pinning down all the key light squares and the c5 push to challenge the knight is unavoidable for white. In short, white cannot create useful space for the knights in this position (Notice that by move 21.Ng3, ...


2

In short, no, a priori the Catalan opening is not a gambit, because unlike the Queen's gambit, in Catalan d5 is played after white's c4, which means white is first to decide whether to take on d5 immediately or let black take on c4. Whereas, to clarify the contrast, in the Queen's gambit, 1. d4 d5 2. c4 black is the side with the tempo to decide whether or ...


1

The doubled rooks on the d-file prevent black's pawn activity in the center (e6, e5 and d5). This reduces black's counterplay. It also allows white to post a knight on d5 or d4 without having to worry about a pawn kicking it out of there, as this would create a weakness on d6, if not lose the pawn. In the game we see white establish a knight on d5, but also ...


1

You can see as the game progresses and Blacks d5 pawn goes away, he still controls e4, thus depriving Whites knights of that square. I think the comment is a bit mistimed in his article and can see why you are confused by it, because e4 is already deprived by the d5 pawn so f5 doesn't at that moment independently contribute to that end.


1

As far as i understand the Catalan is a variation of the queens gambit, so yes, it is a gambit. However, like in the regular queens gambit, in most lines white gets the pawn confortably back, black has to run big risks to keep it. Not to mention that you can play 5.Qa4+ to get the pawn back immediately, though this is not the most ambitious approach.


1

Generally it seems to me if you want to keep the pawn on c4 with b5, white can play a4 which is cumbersome for black as protecting the pawn on b5 with c6 or a6 runs into pins on the a file or the h1-a8 diagonal. Even if you did manage this setup with pawns on a6, b5, c6 and c4 and maybe the bishop on b7 (or moving the rook out of the pins), black's light-...


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