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Topalov, Veselin (2813) - Kramnik, Vladimir (2743) [D19]
World Championship, Elista (2) 2006

Notes by Boris Schipkov

1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Nf3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5








   
6. e3
A classical position in the Slav Defence. Magical. Black's bishop is ideally placed on f5. In my humble opinion the word "Slav" (Slovani, slavyane) originates from slovo in Russian that is word in English, or from slava in Russian that is glory in English, or from a river name.
Here White chooses the Dutch Variation 6. e3. This line became popular after the matches between Alekhine and Euwe for the World Chess Crown in the Netherlands in 1935 and 1937.
Black gradually levelled in the Central Variation 6. Ne5 e6 7. f3 c5 8. e4 Bg6 9. Be3 cxd4 10. Qxd4 Qxd4 11. Bxd4 Nfd7 12. Nxd7 Nxd7 13. Bxc4 a6 14. Ke2 Rg8 15. Rhd1 Rc8 16. b3 Bc5 17. a5 Ke7 18. Na4 Bb4, Topalov, V - Kramnik, V, Elista, game 6.
6...e6 7. Bxc4 Bb4 8. O-O Nbd7 9. Qe2 Bg6
The second player obtained sufficient counterplay in Topalov, V - Sokolov, I, Essent 2006, 9...Bg4 10. Rd1 Qa5 11. e4 Qh5 12. Rd3 e5 13. h3 Bxf3 14. Rxf3 exd4 15. g4 Qc5 16. Na2 O-O.
10. e4








   
10...O-O
White has good compensation for the pawn in the case of 10...Bxc3 11. bxc3 Nxe4 12. Ba3.
11. Bd3 Bh5
The alternatives are 11...Qa5, 11...h6 and 11...Re8.
12. e5 Nd5 13. Nxd5








   
13...cxd5
More solid than the experimental 13...exd5 14. Qe3 h6 15. Bd2 Be7 (15...Qe7) 16. Qf4 (16. a5) 16...Bg6 17. Bxg6 fxg6 18. Qg4 Kh7 19. Ne1 Rf5 20. Nd3 Nf8 21. Be3 Ne6 22. Nf4?! (22. a5) 22...Nxf4 23. Bxf4 Qb6 24. Be3 Raf8 25. Qd1 (25. a5) 25...Qxb2 26. Rb1 Qa2 27. Rxb7 Bg5! 28. Qb3? (28. Qb1! Qe2 29. Re1 Qh5) 28...Qe2 29. Qd1 Qxe3! 30. Rb3 Rxf2 0-1, White resigned in Denecke, T - Schipkov, B, Kecskemet 1991. Or 14. Bf5 1/2, a draw in Atalik, S - Miles, A, Nova Gorica 2000. But after 14. Qe3 h6 the continuation 15. Ne1 looks interesting, 15...f5 16. Qh3 Bg6, Leitao, R - Loureiro, L, Sao Paulo 2000. Black could try 14...f6!? 15. exf6 Nxf6 (15...Qxf6!? 16. Ng5 Bg6 17. Nxh7 Kxh7 18. Qh3+ Kg8 19. Bxg6 Qxg6 20. Qxd7 Rf7 21. Qh3 Raf8, with counterplay) 16. Ne5 c5 17. dxc5 Qe7.
14. Qe3 Bg6
14...Be7 deserves attention, 15. Bd2 Nb8 16. a5 a6 17. Ng5 Bxg5 18. Qxg5 Qxg5 19. Bxg5 Nc6= Lutsko, I - Nadeev, S, Chigorin Mem, St.Petersburg 2006 or 15. Ng5 Bxg5 16. Qxg5 Bg6 17. Bxg6 fxg6 18. Qg4 Rf5 19. Be3 Nb8 with equality in Bacrot, E - Akopian, V, Gothenburg 2005.
15. Ng5 Re8 16. f4








   
16...Bxd3!?
A serious novelty. Before Black played 16...Rc8 (16...Nf8) 17. Bd2 Bxd2 18. Qxd2, Magerramov, E - Meduna, E, Trnava 1981, and 17. g4, Pelletier, Y - Deviatkin, A, Moscow Aeroflot op 2003.
17. Qxd3 f5 18. Be3
If 18. Qb5 then 18...Qe7 19. Qxb7 h6 20. Nxe6 Rab8 21. Qxd5 Qxe6 22. Qxe6+ Rxe6 23. d5 Bc5+ 24. Kh1 Ree8.
18...Nf8 19. Kh1!? Rc8?
Slow. Correct is 19...Be7 with real counterchances.








   
20. g4!
Veselin launches a fierce attack on the kingside.
20...Qd7
Or 20...h6 21. Nxe6! Rxe6 22. gxf5 Rec6 23. Rg1.
21. Rg1 Be7








   
22. Nf3
White may storm with 22. Nxe6! Qxe6 23. gxf5 Qh6 24. Rg3.
22...Rc4 23. Rg2 fxg4 24. Rxg4 Rxa4 25. Rag1 g6








   
26. h4!
Bringing the h-pawn into the attack.
26...Rb4 27. h5 Qb5! 28. Qc2! Rxb2








   
29. hxg6!!
White beautifully sacrifices his queen.
29...h5!
Black logically prefers not to take the Greek gift. White wins after 29...Rxc2 30. gxh7+ Kxh7 31. Rg7+ Kh8 32. Rg8+ Kh7 33. R1g7+ Kh6 34. f5+ or 29...Nxg6 30. Qxg6+! hxg6 31. Rxg6+ Kh7 32. R6g3.
30. g7 hxg4
If 30...Rxc2 then 31. gxf8=R+ Kxf8 32. Rg8+ Kf7 33. R1g7 mate.
31. gxf8=Q+ Bxf8?
A mistake. Better is 31...Kxf8! 32. Qh7 Qe2 33. Qh6+ Kf7 34. Qh5+ Kf8 35. Qxg4 Bg5! 36. Re1 (or 36. Qh5) 36...Qc2 37. fxg5.








   
32. Qg6+?
An error. White could win quickly with 32. Rxg4+ Bg7 33. Qc7 Qf1+ 34. Ng1.
32...Bg7 33. f5 Re7 34. f6 Qe2 35. Qxg4 Rf7








   
36. Rc1?
Stronger is 36. Qh5! a5 (36...Qxe3 37. Ng5) 37. Rg3 Qxe3 38. fxg7 Rb1+ 39. Kh2 Rb2+ 40. Kh3 Rxg7 41. Ng5 Qf2 42. Qe8+ Qf8 43. Qxf8+ Kxf8 44. Nxe6+, winning.
36...Rc2! 37. Rxc2 Qd1+?!
37...Qxc2 at once is more precise.
38. Kg2 Qxc2+ 39. Kg3 Qe4
37...Qf5 is interesting.








   
40. Bf4?!
Better is 40. Qxe4! dxe4 41. Ng5 Rd7 with a small advantage to White in the ending.
40...Qf5 41. Qxf5 exf5 42. Bg5?
Perhaps 42. Ng5 should have been played.
42...a5! 43. Kf4 a4 44. Kxf5 a3








   
45. Bc1
Or 45. Nd2 Rc7 46. Nb3 a2 47. Na1 Bxf6 48. exf6 Kf7 49. Ke5 Rc3.
45...Bf8 46. e6 Rc7 47. Bxa3 Bxa3 48. Ke5 Rc1
Also possible is 48...Rc3 49. Ng5 Rg3 50. Nf7 b5.








   
49. Ng5?
Perhaps Black could win as well after 49. Kxd5!? Rf1 50. Ke4 b5.
49...Rf1?
49...Rg1! is better, and Black wins.
50. e7 Re1+ 51. Kxd5 Bxe7 52. fxe7 Rxe7 53. Kd6








   
53...Re1?!
Here Vladimir probably must play 53...Re3 54. d5 Kf8 55. Kd7 b5 56. Ne6+ Kg8 to advance the black pawn ...b4-b3. Rook defends the pawn on b3, so White has to give his knight.
54. d5 Kf8








   
55. Ne6+?!
The last mistake. White could make a draw by 55. Kd7! b5 56. Ne6+ Kg8 (56...Kf7 57. Nd8+ Kf6 58. Nc6 Rb1 59. Kd6) 57. Kc6 b4 58. Nc5, because Black cannot keep his b-pawn. The rook vs knight endgame without pawns is drawn.
55...Ke8 56. Nc7+ Kd8 57. Ne6+ Kc8 58. Ke7 Rh1 59. Ng5 b5








   
60. d6 Rd1
The best and most exciting game of the match. All three phases of this game are fascinating.
61. Ne6 b4 62. Nc5 Re1+ 63. Kf6 Re3
White resigned. 0-1










Move
   

Topalov, Veselin (2813) - Kramnik, Vladimir (2743) [D19]
World Championship/Elista (2) 2006

1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Nf3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. e3 e6 7. Bxc4 Bb4 8. O-O Nbd7 9. Qe2 Bg6 10. e4 O-O 11. Bd3 Bh5 12. e5 Nd5 13. Nxd5 cxd5 14. Qe3 Bg6 15. Ng5 Re8 16. f4 Bxd3 17. Qxd3 f5 18. Be3 Nf8 19. Kh1 Rc8 20. g4 Qd7 21. Rg1 Be7 22. Nf3 Rc4 23. Rg2 fxg4 24. Rxg4 Rxa4 25. Rag1 g6 26. h4 Rb4 27. h5 Qb5 28. Qc2 Rxb2 29. hxg6 h5 30. g7 hxg4 31. gxf8=Q+ Bxf8 32. Qg6+ Bg7 33. f5 Re7 34. f6 Qe2 35. Qxg4 Rf7 36. Rc1 Rc2 37. Rxc2 Qd1+ 38. Kg2 Qxc2+ 39. Kg3 Qe4 40. Bf4 Qf5 41. Qxf5 exf5 42. Bg5 a5 43. Kf4 a4 44. Kxf5 a3 45. Bc1 Bf8 46. e6 Rc7 47. Bxa3 Bxa3 48. Ke5 Rc1 49. Ng5 Rf1 50. e7 Re1+ 51. Kxd5 Bxe7 52. fxe7 Rxe7 53. Kd6 Re1 54. d5 Kf8 55. Ne6+ Ke8 56. Nc7+ Kd8 57. Ne6+ Kc8 58. Ke7 Rh1 59. Ng5 b5 60. d6 Rd1 61. Ne6 b4 62. Nc5 Re1+ 63. Kf6 Re3 0-1


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