Chess: The Armenian connection

The Armenian connection
By Malcolm Pein

June 15, 2004, Tuesday

THE England number one Michael Adams put the shutters up and kept
Garry Kasparov at bay with the black pieces in round four of the
match between “Armenia” and the Rest of the World taking place in

Facing the English Opening, Adams chose the Hedgehog set-up and
defended patiently in a cramped position. Gradually the Cornishman
found some counterplay, which enabled him to engineer some exchanges
into a drawn position on move 45. With two games to play, the score
is 14-10 to the Rest of the World.

Loek Van Wely’s nightmare tournament continued and he was forced into
a passive position by Vladimir Akopian, who took his time before
infiltrating with his rooks to win a pawn. Boris Gelfand more than
equalised against Vishy Anand but the Indian steered the game into a
drawn rook and pawn endgame.

The contest commemorates the 75th anniversary of the late Armenian
world champion Tigran Petrosian. All the players in the Armenian team
have Armenian connections: three are Armenian nationals – Vladimir
Akopian, Smbat Lputian and Rafael Vaganian; Kasparov’s mother Klara
is Armenian, as is Peter Leko’s wife, Sophie Petrosian; Boris Gelfand
studied under Petrosian in the 1980s.

Rest of the World 3-3 Armenia. Kasparov (Armenia) draw Adams English
Opening Hedgehog, 45 moves; Lputian (Armenia) 0-1 Bacrot, Slav
4…a6, 54; Leko (Armenia) draw Svidler, Sicilian Scheveningen, 20;
Anand draw Gelfand (Armenia), Petroff, 30; Vallejo Pons draw
Vaganian, French Defence Winawer 5…Ba5, 48; Van Wely 0-1 Akopian
(Armenia), Queen’s Indian 4.g3, 65

Leko’s direct 6…Nc6 threatens Nxd4 and Van Wely finds that 7.d5 Na5
loses a pawn and 7.e3 Nxd4 works. Perhaps the odd looking 7.e4 was
playable because after 7 e4 Bb4 8.d5 is reasonable and 7.e4 d5 loses
a pawn. As played Leko seizes the initiative and wins with ease.

L Van Wely – P Leko

Armenia – ROW (3) Moscow

Queen’s Indian

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nf3 b6 4 g3 Ba6 5 Qb3 Bb7 6 Nc3 Nc6! 7 Qd1 Bb4 8
Qd3 d5 9 cxd5 Qxd5 10 Bd2 Qh5 11 Bg2 0-0-0 12 0-0 e5 13 Rac1 Nxd4 14
Nb5 Nxb5 15 Qxb5 Bxd2 16 Nxd2 Bxg2 17 Kxg2 Rxd2 18 Qa6+ Kb8 19 Rxc7
Kxc7 20 Qxa7+ Kd6 21 Qxb6+ Ke7 22 Rc1 Rhd8 0-1

p 7 p p p p e c o c
f p m p p p o p Y
p p p p p p p n b n 7 b n X n p 6 p p


Final position after 22…Rhd8

The Internet chess newspaper Chess Today reports that Alexander
Morozevich will not play the Fide Knockout in Libya later this month.
The tournament now includes only two of the world’s top 10 players.