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Interesting games from the Sinquefield Cup 2016

PostPosted: Sat Aug 27, 2016 6:27 pm
by johncenaa
Today, we analyze the most interesting games from the recent Sinquefield Cup 2016. This tournament took place in St Louis, and the most interesting point about it is that we could see ten of the strongest chess players in the world in action.
Sinquefield Cup


They were fighting for $300,000 in prize money over the nine-round competition. Of course, the winner would also be the Sinquefield Cup Champion for 2016.

Seven of these players were:

    Peter Svidler (2751)
    Ding Liren (2755)
    Veselin Topalov (2761)
    Anish Giri (2769)
    Viswanathan Anand (2770)
    Levon Aronian (2784)
    Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (2819)

By the way, Maxime (or MVL as he is known) is the second-highest rated player in the world after World Champion Magnus Carlsen. Nearly all the brightest and extremely powerful grandmasters were competing in this tournament, so we can see a lot of interesting, entertaining and incredible games.

Another very interesting element is that we also had three of the best American chess players, Hikaru Nakamura (2791), Fabiano Caruana (2807) and Wesley So (2771), present.

Let’s discuss it!

Who do you think the best American player is? Who do you think is the strongest or the best player, or who do you like most? You can add your thoughts in the comments below this article. :)
American Chess Players


Wesley So is an incredibly prepared and tactical player (and he won this tournament), Caruana an extremely talented player with a great imagination and, of course, Nakamura is just exciting to watch because he is original!

Now let’s head to the lesson and check out some interesting games and positions.

Topalov, Veselin (2761) – Svidler, Peter (2751) [C88]
White to play

Here is the first question for you. In this diagram, Svidler with the Black pieces played 25…Rb4. What do you think of this move? It seems that Black is attacking the d4-pawn but the knight on c6 is shaky and not protected very well. Hence, is it a good move or does Black have any tactical problems?

Anand, Viswanathan (2770) – Caruana, Fabiano (2807) [C15]
Black to play

This was an exciting game between young Caruana and Anand, who seemed to be in great shape in this tournament. White didn’t get any opening advantage. He gave up the bishop pair in order to make the position unbalanced and try for the win; but a little later he gave up his activity by exchanging some of his active pieces, in order to win a pawn.

Right now, White is a pawn up and would like to exchange the queens. What should Black do? If he doesn’t find a precise plan, then White can invade his position or exchange the queens. If the queens are exchanged, then White will have seriouswinning chances. So what do you think – what is the best chance for Black

Caruana, Fabiano (2807) – Topalov, Veselin (2761) [C84]
Black to play

White didn’t play too precisely or go back and forward with his pieces, so Black got a very good opportunity for a strong blow. Can you see it? What is the best move for Black?

Vachier Lagrave, Maxime (2819) – Anand, Viswanathan (2770)
White to play

This final example is absolutely brilliant. I have to tell you that this is one of the best games and is highly instructive. The problem with delay in development is that it has long-term effects on your position.

Move 30, as we can see in the diagram, is really interesting because White has a lot of options. This is the critical moment for White. Can you work out what to do? :)

Please be careful because “whatever shines is not gold”, as the Greeks used to say. White’s most obvious move here is not the best one. For that reason, please take a really close look at this position. It is White’s turn.

I must admit that not all of these positions are really hard but some are. From these games, you can learn and practice your calculation skills.

Check complete games with analysis by IM Valeri Lilov HERE!