Chess: Little success for the big names

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The Independent Online
THE DORTMUND International tournament, which finished at the weekend, produced a remarkable result, writes William Hartston. The winner, with by far the best result of his career, was the Dutch grandmaster Jeroen Piket on 6 1/2 points; Michael Adams finished second on 5 1/2 , and Vladimir Epishin third on 5. Then came all the big names: Karpov, Korchnoi and Yusupov sharing fourth place with Dreyev, just ahead of Timman. Only the bottom two places conformed to past form, with Lutz sharing last with the world's youngest grandmaster, Peter Leko.

Karpov, with the excuse of having just left hospital after a minor operation, could beat only the bottom two and was beaten by his old rival Viktor Korchnoi for the first time in 13 years.

Adams was on good form, challenging for first place until the last round, when he lost to Yusupov. Apart from an extraordinary instinct for picking good moves, Adams has a marvellous temperament for the game. In games where the initiative and the advantage sway back and forth, he seems able to maintain his equanimity. In the following game from Dortmund, just as Black seems to have got over the worst of his problems, Adams kills him with a transposition into the endgame.

After 31. Re4, either Na5 or Na3 would lose the a-pawn to Ra4, while Nb2 runs into trouble against Rb1. That left 31 . . . Nd6, which was elegantly demolished by a reply that Adams must have seen coming a long way off.

White: Adams

Black: Lutz

1 e4 c5 22 Bxg7 Kxg7

2 c3 d5 23 Nc3 b5

3 exd5 Qxd5 24 b3 bxc4

4 d4 Nf6 25 bxc4 Rab8

5 Nf3 Bg4 26 Ne4 Rb6

6 Be2 Nc6 27 Qc3+ Qe5

7 h3 Bh5 28 Qxe5+ Nxe5

8 c4 Qd6 29 Nxc5 Nxc4

9 d5 Bxf3 30 d7 Rd8

10 Bxf3 Nd4 31 Re4 Nd6

11 Nc3 g6 32 Rxe6 fxe6

12 Be3 Nxf3+ 33 Nxe6+ Kf7

13 Qxf3 Bg7 34 Nxd8+ Ke7

14 0-0 0-0 35 Ne6 Kxd7

15 Rfe1 Rfe8 36 Nf8+ Kc7

16 Rad1 a6 37 Nxg6 Rb2

17 Bf4 Qd7 38 a3 Ra2

18 Be5 Qf5 39 Nf4 h4

19 Qe3 h5 40 Nd5+ Kd7

20 Na4 e6 41 Nc3 1-0

21 d6 Nd7