Thessaloniki Chess Grand Prix 2013 Round 2: Alexander Grischuk – Hikaru Nakamura 1-0

Black played the Neo-Arkhangelsk variation of the Ruy Lopez, which was broadly analysed after the inspiring games of Shirov and Ivanchuk. Nakamura repeated 15…Re8, the move that he introduced in the game with Leko in Wijk an Zee. Grischuk deviated from that game with the direct 18.Ba4 and 19.Bc6, which is exactly the place where the Bishop wants to land. White gained some tempi in the process as black Rook retreated to f8 (18…Re6!? was interesting).

Black could have maneuvered the Knight to kick the annoying Bishop from c6, but instead he went for the central blow 21…d5. White had an extra pawn, but his structure was demolished. After the long shuffling, some pieces started to be traded off the board. The commentators felt that Grischuk could have exchanged the h5-pawn for b3-pawn while keeping both pairs of Rooks on the board. An interesting endgame with R+B+3P vs R+B+1P emerged. White still had doubled pawns and Nakamura had some hopes of salvaging a draw. But then he conceded the 5th rank to white Rook and the things started to go downhill. Grischuk forced trade of the Rooks to reach a winning Bishops’ endgame and finally clinch a victory. Read a full report on the round at Chess Blog.

Grischuk, Alexander (2779) – Nakamura, Hikaru (2775)

Result: 1-0
Site: Thessaloniki
Date: 2013.05.23

[…] 1.e4 e5 2.¤f3 ¤c6 3.¥b5 a6 4.¥a4 ¤f6 5.O-O b5 6.¥b3 ¥c5 7.c3 d6 8.d4 ¥b6 9.a4 ¦b8 10.¤a3 O-O 11.axb5 axb5 12.¤xb5 ¥g4 13.¥c2 exd4 14.¤bxd4 ¤xd4 15.cxd4 ¦e8 16.¦e1 ¥xf3 17.gxf3 ¤h5 18.¥a4 ¦f8 19.¥c6 £f6 20.¦a4 ¤f4 21.¢h1 d5 22.exd5 ¤g6 23.¦e4 ¤e7 24.¦c4 £d6 25.¥f4 £d8 26.¥g5 f6 27.¥f4 ¤xd5 28.¥xd5+ £xd5 29.£e2 ¦f7 30.¢g2 ¦bf8 31.£c2 g5 32.¥e3 ¦a8 33.b3 ¢g7 34.¦c6 ¦a5 35.£c4 ¦b5 36.h4 h6 37.¦ce6 ¥a5 38.¦e8 c6 39.¦a8 ¥b4 40.¦e6 gxh4 41.£xc6 £xc6 42.¦xc6 ¥f8 43.¦c3 ¦fb7 44.¦cc8 ¥e7 45.¦g8+ ¢f7 46.¦h8 h5 47.¦h7+ ¢g6 48.¦h6+ ¢f7 49.¦ah8 ¥f8 50.¦xh5 ¦xh5 51.¦xh5 ¦xb3 52.¦xh4 ¦b5 53.¢f1 ¢e6 54.¢e2 ¥d6 55.¢d3 ¦b3+ 56.¢c4 ¦b4+ 57.¢c3 ¦b5 58.¦h6 ¦a5 59.¢d3 ¥f8 60.¦h8 ¥d6 61.¢c4 ¦a4+ 62.¢b3 ¦a3+ 63.¢b2 ¦a5 64.¥d2 ¦f5 65.¦h3 ¥f4 66.¥e3 ¥d6 67.¢c3 ¦a5 68.¦h6 ¦a3+ 69.¢c4 ¦a4+ 70.¢d3 ¥f8 71.¦h5 ¦a3+ 72.¢e4 ¦a4 73.f4 ¥e7 74.¦b5 ¥d6 75.f5+ ¢d7 76.¦b7+ ¢e8 77.¢d5 ¥e7 78.¦b5 ¦a2 79.¦b8+ ¢d7 80.¦b7+ ¢e8 81.¢e4 ¥d6 82.¢d3 ¦a5 83.¢e4 ¦a2 84.f3 ¥e7 85.¥f4 ¦a4 86.¥d2 ¢d8 87.¢d5 ¢e8 88.¦b5 ¢d7 89.¦a5 ¦xa5+ 90.¥xa5 ¥a3 91.¥b6 ¥c1 92.¥c5 ¥e3 93.¥b4 ¥f2 94.¥f8 ¥e3 95.¥c5 ¥g1 96.¥a3 ¥e3 97.¢e4 ¥d2 98.¥c5 ¢e8 99.d5 ¢d7 100.¥e3 ¥a5 101.¥d4 ¥d8 102.¥c3 ¥e7 103.¢f4 ¥d6+ 104.¢g4 ¢e7 105.¥d2 ¥c5 106.¥f4 ¥b4 107.¢h5 ¢f7 108.¥g3 ¥c5 109.d6 ¥d4 110.¥h4 ¥b6 111.d7 ¥d8 112.¢h6 ¥a5 113.¥e1 ¥b6 114.¥b4 ¥d8 115.¢h5 ¢g7 116.¥d6 ¢h7 117.¢h4 ¢h6 118.¢g4 ¢g7 119.¢f4 ¢h6 120.¢e4 ¢g5 121.¥f4+

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