Shakmaty Bereolos - The Official Chess Site of Peter Bereolos

White: GM Julio Becerra
Black: FM Peter Bereolos
Emory/Castle Grand Prix
Round 4

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 After several recent losses with the open variation, I decided to put it in the shop for awhile and return to the closed variation, which I had played with relative success from 1983-1993. Looking back at the database, it isn't entirely clear to me why I stopped playing it. 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 0-0 9.h3 Bb7 10.d4 Re8 11.Nbd2 Bf8 12.d5 Nb8 13.Nf1 Nbd7 14.N3h2 c6

more common is 14...Nc5 15.Bc2 c6 16.b4 Ncd7 17.dxc6 Bxc6 18.Bg5 when in comparison to the game, the white's light-squared bishop has been pushed off the a2-g8 diagonal and White has weakened his queenside. I originally gave the text a dubious mark because of this and the game Short-Beliavsky from the first FIDE KO event. Beginning in 2010, some top players have tried 14...c6 including Karjakin, Svidler, Ding, Vituigov, and Karpov, and now Black seems to be holding his own. Short also mentions 14...h6 as another alternative. The statistics in my database seem to point to Short being correct. White has scored a whopping 75.0% in 28 games against 14...c6. Black hasn't fared too much better with 14...Nc5 where White is 62.4% in 128 games. However, White has only scored 45.0% agaisnt 14...h6 in 30 games. On the other hand, these statistics are a bit skewed as in the pre-engine days, Black often suffered losses like I did in this game. These days, the plan played by Svidler against MVL looks like it promises Black dynamic equality. 15.dxc6 Bxc6 16.Bg5 this is the position to compare to the one in the note to Black's 15th. After White exchanges his dark-squared bishop for Black's knight, he has an advantage in minor pieces that can fight for the d5 square and there seems to be no corresponding weakness in the White camp. 16...h6 Karjakin and Karpov played the text. The others went with the main engine move 16...Qc7 which intends Qb7 further fighting for the d5 square and counterattacking e4. A recent high level game went 17.Qf3 a5 this was Short's recommended improvement on Beliavsky's (17...Qb7 18.Ng3 d5 19.Ng4 dxe4 20.Qf5 Nd5 21.Nxe4 Re6 22.Rad1 h5 23.Ne3 Nf4 24.Bxf4 Bxe4 25.Rxd7 Bxf5 26.Rxb7 exf4 27.Rxf7 1-0 Short-Beliavsky Groningen 1997) 18.Rad1 Qb7 19.Ng3 a4 20.Bc2 b4 21.Nf5 Re6 22.Bxf6 Nxf6 23.Ng4 Nxg4 24.hxg4 g6 25.Ne3 bxc3 26.bxc3 Bh6 27.Rb1 Qa7 28.Rb4 Bg5 29.Qe2 Ree8 30.Qd3 Red8 31.Nd5 Rab8 32.Reb1 a3 33.Nb6 Kg7 34.g3 Rb7 35.Kg2 ½-½ Vachier Lagrave-Svidler 2016 Sinquefield Cup. In his post game interview, (starting around 3:58:00 in the video) Svidler credited Kuzmin's book for his opening preparation. 17.Bxf6 Nxf6 18.Ng4! Shirov was successful with 18.Ng3 against Karjakin, but I think the text is more to the point. 18...d5 19.exd5 Bxd5 20.Ng4 Bxb3 21.axb3 Nxg4 22.Qxg4 a5 23.Rad1 Qf6 24.Rd5 b4 25.c4 a4 26.bxa4 Rxa4 27.c5 Qc6 28.Rdxe5 Rxe5 29.Rxe5 b3 30.Qf5 g6 31.Qd3 Bg7 32.Rd5 Rb4 33.Rd8+ Kh7 34.Rd7 Rb7 35.Rxb7 Qxb7 36.Qc4 Be5 37.c6 Qc7 38.Ne4 Bxb2 39.Nd2 Qd6 40.c7 Qxd2 41.Qxf7+ Bg7 42.c8Q 1-0 Shirov-Karjakin Odessa 2010 18...Nxg4 18...Nxe4 19.Qf3 d5 else White gains two pieces for a rook and has an iron grip on the d5-square. 20.Rxe4 dxe4 21.Qxf7+ Kh7 22.Qg8+ Kg6 23.Bf7+ Kg5 24.Qh7 should soon be mate 19.Qxg4 Qg5 Karpov preferred to reroute his bishop to the a2-g8 diagonal, to challenge White's bishop. 19...Bd7 20.Qf3 Be6 21.Ne3 Rb8 22.Nd5 Qd7 23.Red1 Rec8 24.Rd3 Qd8 25.Rad1 a5 26.a3 Kh8 27.R1d2 Qh4 28.Re3 g6 29.Re1 h5 30.Qd1 Rb7 31.Ba2 Rcb8 32.Rd3 Bh6 33.Bb3 Bf8 34.Ba2 Bh6 35.Bb3 Bf8 36.Qd2 Kh7 37.Ba2 Bh6 38.Qe2 Kg7 39.b4 Ra7 40.bxa5 Rxa5 41.Nb4 Bxa2 42.Qxa2 Rb6 43.c4 bxc4 44.Qxc4 Rc5 45.Qb3 Qd8 46.Rd5 h4 47.Qd3 Qb8 48.Rd1 Bg5 49.Kf1 Rxd5 50.Qxd5 Qc7 51.Qd3 ½-½ Morovic -Karpov Arica 2015 20.Qf3 20.Qxg5 hxg5 should be a fairly comfortable edge for White, but I think Becerra's move is stronger as the Black queen lands on an awkward square. 20...Qf4 21.Qe2 a5 22.Rad1 Rab8 23.Bd5

23...Bxd5? A horrendous move, dropping material, that I really can't explain. Black's only trump in the position is the long range potential of the two bishops, so he should simply retreat 23...Bd7 when White has the edge, but Black is still fighting. Even 23...Rec8 24.Bxc6 Rxc6 is playable when Black can get some counterplay with ...b4. 24.Rxd5 the rest doesn't need much comment. Black is losing a pawn for no compensation. I give up another pawn for the illusion of some activity, but Becerra's accurate play left no further chances. 24...b4 25.Rxa5 bxc3 26.bxc3 Rec8 27.Qc2 d5 28.Rxd5 Ba3 29.Rd2 Rb2 30.Qd3 Rcb8 31.Rxb2 Rxb2 32.Re2 Qc1 33.Rxb2 Bxb2 34.c4 Bd4 35.Qe2 Qa3 36.g3 Bb2 37.Qc2 Bd4 38.Kg2 Kf8 39.Nd2 Ke7 40.Nb3 Qb4 41.Qd3 Qb6 42.Qd2 g5 43.Qa5 1-0 43...Bxf2 44.Qxe5+ Kf8 45.c5 costs Black his bishop