Anand – Gelfand, Corus 2006

Viswanathan Anand (2792)
Boris Gelfand (2723)
Sicilian: Najdorf
Corus 2006, Wijk aan Zee, Round 13
ECO Code

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. f3 e5 7. Nb3 Be6 8. Be3 Nbd7 9. Qd2 b5 10. O-O-O Nb6 11. Qf2 Nc4 12. Bxc4 bxc4
last book move
13. Na5 Qd7
13… Qxa5?? 14. Bb6 wins the queen
14. Rd2
Another demonstration of Anand’s home preparation. He deviates from a game played earlier in the B section of this tournament.14. g4 Be7 15. g5 Nh5 16. Nd5 Qa4 17. Nc3 Qd7 18. Nd5 Qa4 19. Qe1 c3 20. Qxc3 Rc8 21. Qd2 Qxa2 22. Qb4 Bxd5 23. exd5 O-O 24. Nc6 Bd8 25. c3 Nf4 26. Bxf4 exf4 27. Rhe1 Bxg5 28. Qxd6 Qa1+ 29. Kc2 Qa4+ 30. Kb1 Bh4 31. Rd4 Qb5 32. Na7 Qc5 33. Nxc8 Qxd6 34. Nxd6 Bxe1 35. Nb7 Bf2 36. Rxf4 Rb8 37. Na5 Kf8 38. Nc6 Bc5 39. Nxb8 Cheparinov – Lahno, Corus B, Wijk aan Zee 2006, 1-0 (39)
14… Be7 15. Rhd1 Rb8
15… O-O
16. Bc5 Qc7 17. Rxd6 Qxa5 18. Rxe6
Demolishes the pawn shield
18… fxe6 19. Bxe7 Rb7
19… Kxe7? 20. Qa7+ +-
20. Bd6 Nd7
Position after 20...Nd7. Anand has sacrificed an exchange to smash Black’s pawn structure and dislocate his kingside development. He has a slight edge here and looks to have sufficient compensation for the exchange.
21. Qh4
Trying to create more weaknesses on the kingside.
21… Qd8 22. Qh5+ g6 23. Qh6 Qf6 24. Ne2
Starting an ambitious manoeuvre Nc3-e2-g1-h3-g5 to ratchet up the pressure on the Black kingside, or even Ng3 to bolster an h-pawn advance.
24… Kf7 25. h4 g5
Gelfand feels forced to weaken his kingside in an effort to stabilise his position and get his pieces developed.
26. hxg5 Qxh6 27. gxh6 Rg8 28. g4 Rg6 29. Rh1
Blacks flurry of activity has allowed him to complete his development. White seems to have gone backwards in terms of activity, but Anand has the position firmly under control. The h6-pawn is a thorn in Black’s position.
29… Rb6 30. Ba3
A retreat that’s only temporary
30… Rf6 31. Rh3 Kg6 32. Kd2
Anand activates his king – its needed to cover the f3-pawn which releases his rook to become active again.
32… Rf7 33. Ke3 Nf6 34. Nc3
The knight has no further prospects on the kingside, so it seeks adventure elsewhere. In particular, along with the White king it covers all the entry points down the d-file.
34… Rd7 35. Rh1 Rc6 36. Na4 Rb7 37. Nc3 Rb8 38. Nd1
Protecting the b2-pawn so that the bishop can move freely again.
38… Ng8
Preventing 39. Be7, as well as threatening to win the h6-pawn.
39. Rh5
At last, the weak e5 pawn is ready to fall. Black is in a semi zugzwang state.
39… Nxh6 40. Rxe5 Nf7 41. Rh5 Rb5 42. Rh1
Job done.
42… e5
This opens up a nice out-post for the White knight.
43. Nc3 Rb7 44. Nd5 Re6 45. Bb4
Rerouting the bishop to a more useful diagonal.
45… Kg7 46. Rh2 Ng5
Black gets a little counterplay by pressing against White’s f3-pawn.
47. Bc3 Kg8 48. Rf2 Rf7 49. Rf1 Re8 50. Ke2
Threatening to nullify the pressure on the f3-pawn with the knight manoeuvre Nd5-e5-f5.
50… Ref8 51. Bxe5 Nxe4
Exploiting the pin down the f-file to demolish White’s pawn structure. The threat is Ng3+
52. Ke3 Nc5 53. f4
White is still the exchange down, but his two extra pawns, still linked, plus his centralised minor pieces, give him a significant edge.
53… Re8 54. Kd4 Nd7 55. Re1 Re6 56. Re2
A crafty move, covering the queenside pawns.
56… Nxe5 57. fxe5 Rg7 58. Nf6+
Holding the position together.
58… Kf7 59. Kxc4 Rg5 60. Kd4 Rb6 61. c4
The rook on e2 is marvellously placed.
61… Ke6 62. b3 Rb8 63. Re4 h6 64. Nd5 Rbg8 65. Nf4+ Ke7
65… Kd7 does not help much 66. e6+ Kc6 67. Nd5 Rxg4 68. e7 Rxe4+ 69. Kxe4 +-
66. e6
Enough is enough for Gelfand. He resigns. An awesome technical performance from Anand.66. e6 Kd6 67. Nd5 +-
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