Games: Chess

Click to follow
Indy Lifestyle Online
There is a clause in the contracts for the players at the Madrid tournament that lets the organisers deduct 10 per cent of their prize money if they are considered not to have produced sufficiently fighting chess. After all the games in rounds four and five were drawn, a formal warning was given to some of the players. It seemed to work; the five games of round six produced four decisive results and only one draw.

Fighting qualities, however, cannot be assessed by results alone. While the fifth-round games were indeed a dreary batch, there was plenty of excitement in round four, particularly in the game between Viswanathan Anand and Alexander Belyavsky, which reached the diagram position after Anand's 32nd move as White.

With Qe8 threatened, Black seems in trouble, but Belyavsky found a brilliant way out with 32...Qxd5, not fearing 33.Qe8 when he can play 33...Qf7 34.Qxc8 d2. Anand replied 33.Nxf8 which looks decisive, since 33...Kxf8 leads to mate after 34.Ng6+ Kf7 35.Nh8+! Kg8 36.Qe8+ Kh7 37.Qg6+ and 38.Qxg7, but Belyavsky now found 33...Ne4!

Now White is in trouble; he is a piece ahead, but the threats of Qxd4 or pushing the d-pawn are very powerful. After a long thought, Anand came up with 34.Qc1!? and the final moves were extraordinary: 34...d2 (34...Qc4 looks worth serious consideration) 35.Qxc8! d1=Q+ 36.Kh2 Nd6 37.Qd8 Qf7 (37...Kf7? 38.Qd7+ leads to mate) 38.Qxd6 Qxf8 39.Qd5+ Qf7 40.Qa8+ Kh7 41.Qe4+ Kg8 and a draw was agreed! If Black had played 41...g6 he could even have lost after 42.Qe5 Qf8 43.Qc7+ Kg8 44.Nxg6.

Comments