Magnus’ Missed Wins

Round 3

42.Re5?+  I saw the computer on Chess24 say the only winning move was 42.Rb8+!  I didn’t understand the point of it, but tried to and found 43.Nf3, even though it’s computer and Stockfish weren’t saying 43.Nf3 at first.  It does win.  I puttered around with it, but here is sample best play.  42. Rb8+ Kf7 43. Nf3 Bd6 44. Ng5+ Ke7 45. Rh8 Rxd3

46. Rxh7+ Kd8 47. Rh3 Rd5+ 48. Kg4 Rd4 49. Nf7+ Ke7 50. Nxd6 Rxd6 51. Kg5 Rd2
52. Re3+ Kf7 53. h4 Rg2+ ( 53… d5 54. Rg3 Rc2 55. h5 Rc3 56. Kh4 d4 ( 56…
Rc6 57. f5 d4 58. Kg5 ( 58. Rg6 Rc1 ( 58… Rc3) 59. h6 d3 60. Rd6 Rd1 61. Rd7+
Kg8 62. Kg3 Rf1 63. Kg4 Rd1 64. Kf4 d2 65. Ke3 Rf1 66. Kxd2 Rxf5 67. Rg7+ Kh8
68. Rg4 Rb5 ( 68… Rd5+ 69. Kc2 Kh7 ( 69… Rc5+ 70. Rc4 Rb5 71. Kd3 Rd5+ 72.
Rd4 Rb5 73. Kc4 Rb6 74. Kc5 Rb8 75. Rd6 Rf8 76. Kxb4 Rf5 77. Ka4 Kh7 ( 77…
Kg8 78. b4 Rf8 ( 78… Kf8 79. Rd8+ Ke7 80. h7 Kxd8 81. h8=Q+ Ke7 82. b5 Kd7
83. Qd4+ Kc7 84. Ka5 Rh5 85. Ka6 Rh6+ 86. b6+ Kc6 87. b7 Rd6 88. b8=N+ ( 88.
Qxd6+ Kxd6 89. b8=Q+ Kd5 90. Qf4 Ke6 91. Qg5 Kd6 92. Kb6 Ke6 93. Kc6 Kf7 94.
Kd6 Kf8 95. Qg6 ( 95. Ke6 Ke8 96. Qe7#

70.Kxf5??  70.Rc3 still draws
71.Na4?!  71.Re1 is winning
72.Rb7?  This is the wrong pawn to go after.  The h-pawn is the key here.
72.Rf7+ Ke6, 73.Rf2 h3, 74.Kh1 Ra1, 75.Nb7 Rb1, 76.Rh2 is winning.  After the h-pawn falls, White’s rook goes to the fifth rank, and White’s king and rook coordinate well in this situation to eject the Black king, and then win the b-pawn.

Round 4

h4 by Karjakin was a mistake, and then 39…Bxh4, 40.Bxe5 is where Magnus returns the favor.  39.Bd5 is winning because by keeping the d6 and h4 pawns on the board, Black can put White into zugzwang (I played it out with the engine on Chess24, which is where I’m watching the match – Matthew, from the chessclub, saw me on that site and chatted hi to me!  🙂

45…f4.  This move was widely criticized on the chat, but as Svidler and Eric Hansen were showing, it is difficult to find a win once 45…fxg is played because those g-file pawns of Black stay doubled (instead of White trying to win one back), and somehow the doubledness of the pawns also helps White to try to create a fortress there.  I don’t believe anyone found a definite win, only close tries.  That’s the problem with endgames, true winning positions are not that difficult; sorta, but not really winning positions are much more difficult to traverse.


10 thoughts on “Magnus’ Missed Wins

  1. Thanks!! 🙂

    Let know if you are ever in Colorado! You can always come visit me and I even have an empty room with a bed and computer that you can stay in (as long as you like, really)!

    Colorado has a lot of interesting places to see, it’s nice to visit Colorado Springs here. Only thing is we are sort of cut off from the rest of the country, distance-wise, closer to the West-coast and mid-west, but rather far from the East of the country.

  2. Thank you! If you ever come to Toronto – you are welcome too.
    No, I am in New York and guess where I was today. 🙂
    I was there, saw both guys through a glass, not a very good view from a pretty small room, big room with spectators and no view is separate. But I saw them 10 meters from me at the press-conference afterwards. It was great.
    Carlsen was visibly upset and behaved sometimes like a kid, I forgive him.
    But the atmosphere was friendly, there were no animosity between them, though no love either.
    I don’t have a ticket for tomorrow and not sure that I should try to get it, you get tired after staying there for more than 5 hours and it is not new anymore. Though the result could be new.

  3. Thanks, and thanks for the invite! 🙂 I’ve never even been to the Northeast coast of the United States. It seems quite far.
    I laughed at your description of Magnus, and Alex did too (he’s not so fond of Magnus, to put it mildly). I hope you didn’t get a ticket for today, as it was a home-prep draw by Magnus, so the most let-down game of the match so far. I hope that that d3 line in the Spanish has finally been put to rest at this level (it didn’t even stop a Marshall-gambit-esque type of reply).
    Here’s the game. Just glancing at it, h3 and d3 together in the Spanish just seems incredibly passive for someone not looking for a draw as White. Loek Van Wely suggested that playing against Magnus, he should really go at him since Magnus is not used to playing positions from behind. Again, too many rest days as well.

    I think that that is super-cool that you went to NY City to check out the match. That is awesome you got to see a game, and hopefully got a souvenir as well! 😀

  4. Yes, nice choice to view the city instead! At first, I thought you were going to say that you saw Trump Tower (although, I can’t tell you what the big deal about that would be, lots of interesting places to visit there I can imagine).

    I might play some quick-chess tonight.

  5. Yeah, they are trying to make money on that tournament, and I guess FIDE specifies a minimum prize-fund, so they give the players that and keep the rest. Players would be getting way more if Kasparov were FIDE president.

  6. By the way, I saw it. There was a group of protesters (not a big one) nearby, some streets nearby were closed, heavily armed police in front and inside.
    Nevertheless I managed to get inside, had to pass through bag check outside and then security check inside. It looks impressive from outside and super-luxury inside. 🙂
    I don’t like the ways they are using to try to make the money.

  7. I don’t either. There should be a professional staff of any chess organization that runs things, namely marketers, etc. FIDE basically sold the contract for the world championship match to Agon from what I gather, who may have sold it again (?) In either case, they only need to pay the players what FIDE stipulates, then they probably pay or paid FIDE a certain amount of money for the rights, and after that it’s pure capitalism where they will make as much money as they can to pay themselves to see how much they can possibly make off of it.

    FIDE comes across to me as this irrelevant, corrupt organization that should finally be replaced. Karpov and Kasparov both lost their FIDE election bids. I suspect Kirsan uses FIDE as a front for evading taxes on his oil revenues. He was involved supposedly in purchasing ISIS oil through Syria, and then is there with Bashad and saying he is donating chess equipment to Syria. I mean, come on, seriously. He was friends with Khadafi, and you have to think they were doing business somehow. FIDE is just bad business for chess, IMO. Kirsan came in supporting tournaments and getting GMs to side with him until the PCA GM association went away, then Kirsan pulled his support for many tournaments. It’s easy to see what’s been going on because it’s been going on for so long, and so much negative press has been written about it.

    Supposedly, only Iran was willing to sponsor the Women’s World Chess Championship in 2017. They have had spotty support for that event, anyway, and it’s usually held in Russia. FIDE seems to have gotten USA (and Canada) chess very little involvement. I understand the championship is in NY City, but that’s only about money IMO. London, NY are two cities where sponsors would be willing to put up big money, in general.

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