Thursday, 1 September 2011

Up, down and all around

While my regular chess club (at the Australian National University) currently has somewhat cramped accommodation, it does also have a big screen TV, which I can hook my computer up to. This comes in handy to either display the draw before a round, or to show live coverage from a tournament such as the current World Cup. Last night I had a look at a couple of games before deciding on Fier v Morozevich (which Morozevich eventually won). I figured that there was a high probability that any game involving Morozevich would look good on the TV, and it turned out to be so. As we were packing up after the round, one of the club members wondered why Morozevich was on a low-ish board. The simple explanation was that while Morozevich has been one of the top players in the World, on the back of some dominant tournament wins, there have also been the not so good results. As a consequence his rating tends to move up and down, and as of yesterday was in the down cycle. A day later however, and Morozevich is back on the up cycle. He gained 43 rating points in the last rating period, and moved from 48th place up to 17th (on the September FIDE rating list). Given the sometimes glacial nature of the FIDE ratings system (especially at the top), this is a pretty significant change, and would have shifted him up a substantial number of boards if his new rating was used to seed the World Cup.
Here is the second Morozevich v Fier game from the second round of the World Cup. Fier's impetuous 11. ... e5 turned out to be the losing move, as after 13.Qa4+ the obvious 13. ... Bd7 gets hit with 14.Rxd7! Nxd7 15.Nd5 and White has an overwhelming attack.

Morozevich, Alexander v Fier, Alexandr
2011 FIDE World Cup

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.Nc3 Qc7 6.Be3 a6 7.Qd2 Nf6 8.0-0-0 Be7 9.f4 d6 10.Be2 Nxd4 11.Qxd4 e5 12.fxe5 dxe5 (D)
13.Qa4+ Kf8 14.Rhf1 Bd7 15.Qb3 Rc8 16.Kb1 Be6 17.Nd5 Nxe4 18.Bg4 Qc6 19.Bxe6 Qxe6 20.Qxb7 Nd6 21.Qxa6 f6 22.Nxe7 Kxe7 23.Bc5 Rxc5 24.Qa7+ Nb7 25.Qxb7+ Ke8 26.Rd2 1-0

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