13 MARCH 1993, Page 52

Saving Fide's face

Raymond Keene

After the dramatic decision by Gary Kasparov and Nigel Short, the world's top two players, last week to play their world championship match outside the jurisdic- tion of Fide, the World Chess Federation, the chess world has begun to polarise into two conflicting groups. According to Fide's own regulations the reserve match between Karpov and Timman must now be staged. Karpov, as explained last week, was im- mediately eager for the match, but Tim- man seemed more hesitant. However, in the past few days Nigel's victim in the Candidates Final has clarified his position. In a statement from Linares, where he is currently competing in the category 18 international tournament, Timman announced that if it is necessary to save Fide he would play Karpov for the `World Championship'.

For many years Timman's results against Karpov were wretched but in the past 18 months he has been consistently defeating the Russian, and Linares was no exception this year. Could this have had something to do with Timman's new position on playing the reserve match?

Timman-Karpov: Linares, 1993; English Open- ing.

1 Nf3 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nc3 Bb4 4 g3 b6 5 Bg2 Bb7 6 0-0 0-0 7 Qc2 Re8 8 Rdl d6 9 d4 Bxc3 10 Qxc3 Nbd7 11 b3 a6 This forms the introduction to a most un-Karpov-like plan which leaves Black's queenside full of holes. 12 Bb2 b5 13 Racl Nb6 14 Ba3 Be4 15 Bfl bxc4 16 bxc4 Bc6 17 Qa5 Bxf3 18 exf3 d5 Forcing a situation where both sides suffer from multiple pawn weaknesses. Although Black's position is passive his knights guard most of the weak points and it is difficult for White to make progress. 19 cxd5 Nfxd5 20 f4 Qd7 21 Rd2 Nf6 22 Bg2 NbdS 23 Rb2 h5 Karpov conducts the whole game in uncharacteristic fashion, the wing thrusts on this move, move 26 and move 27 being far more risky than one would normally associate with his style. 24 Bf3 Rec8 25 Rb7 Qd8 26 Kg2 h4 27 Qa4 a5 28 Re5 Nd7 29 Rc2 N7b6 30 Qb5 Qf6 31 Qd3 Rd8 32 Qe4 Nd7 33 f5 hxg3 34 hxg3 Nf8 35 Rc6 Nb4

Position after 35 . . . Nb4

(Diagram) Black loses on time A curious end to a very strange game. With so much to-in g and fro-ing, it is amazing that Karpov should have been so short of time. His last move throws caution to the winds and after 36 Bxb4 axb4 37 Rocc7 Black would indeed be in some tmuble. If this is a foretaste of a Timman-Karpov World Championship match we had better all start investing in stocks of strong black coffee to keep us awake during the games.

If /Viand, the brilliant young Indian, were the official reserve, a replacement match might have more interest. Here is how he tore apart Fide's 'reserve World Champion'.

Anand—Timman: Linares, 1993; Ruy Lopez.

1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 a6 4 Ba4 b5 5 Bb3 Na5 6 0-0 de 7 d4 Nxb3 Black gains the two bishops and doubles White's pawns with this rather unsubtle defence to the Ruy Lopez. However, if chess were that simple the Ruy Lopez would have gone out of fashion in the 16th century. 8 axb3 f6 9 Nc3 Bb7 10 Nh4 Qd7 11 Nd5 Q17 12 c4 c6 13 Ne3 Ne7 14 d5 This establishes White's dominance in the centre and on the queenside. 14 . . . cxd5 15 cxd5 g6 16 Bd2 f5 Has Timman

never heard of development? It is usually fatal to launch an attack when your opponent has strategic advantages, is better coordinated and has far more of his pieces in play. 17 Rcl Rc8 18

Position after 20 . . . f4

RxcS+ Bxc8 19 exf5 gxf5 20 Bb4 f4 (Diagram) 21 Bxd6! It is hardly surprising, with Black's army slumbering in their beds, that White can finish things off with a sacrificial flourish. 21 . . . fxe3 22 fxe3 Qg7 23 Qc2 Bd7 24 Qc7 Qg5 25 Nf3 Qxe3+ 26 Kh1 Bg7 27 Rel Qf4 28 Bxe7 Kxe7 29 NxeS Black resigns Black has been totally routed.

The best game of the tournament so far was that played by the new young Russian star Vladimir Kramnik against the talented but erratic Vassily Ivanchuk.

Ivanchuk.Kramnik: Linares 1993; Sicilian De- fence.

1 e4 c5 2 NO Nc6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Nxd4 Nf6 5 Nc3 d6 6 Bc4 Qb6 7 Nb3 e6 8 Bf4 Ne5 9 Bet a6 10 Bg3 h5 11 h3 Qc7 12 f4 Nc4 13 Bxc4 Qxc4 14 Q13 h4 15 Bh2 Bd7 16 0-0-0 Rc8 17 Rhel b5 18 Qf2 Qc7 19 e5 b4 20 Rd3 A clever idea but it is refuted even more ingeniously. 20 . . . dxe5 21 fxe5 bxc3 22 Ritc3 Qxc3 An elegant queen sacrifice which drives White's king into the open. 23 bxc3 Ba3+ 24 Kd2 Nd5 25 Re4 Rxc3 26 Rg4 0-0 27 Qxh4 Rfc8 28 Nd4 Bb4 29 Ke2 Bb5+ The concluding sacrifice which seals White's doom. The final series of forced transactions leaves Black with a decisive material advantage. 30 NxbS Rxc2+ 31 K13 axb5 32 Rxb4 Nxh4 33 Qxb4 R8c3+ White resigns Black will inevitably regain the queen by . . Rc4+ leaving him with a won endgame.