Winning Chess Moves: Nepomniachtchi vs Karpov, 2/16/2013

We’ve already seen that Ian Nepomniachtchi won’t be intimidated by Magnus Carlsen’s talent, but will he be star struck sitting across the board from a World Champion? Based on his games against the current and previous World Champions, Nepo will be unfazed playing the holder of chess’ most coveted title. In fact, Nepomniachtchi seems to make the most of these opportunities to prove his mettle.

Tonight’s chess puzzle comes from one such encounter. In 2013 Nepomniachtchi had white against former World Champion Anatoly Karpov in the first round of the Aeroflot Open Finals. Anatoly Karpov played his beloved Caro–Kann Defence in which he is known to reach a solid middle game position with little effort and then routinely achieve victories in the ensuing endgames. However, Nepomniachtchi played for complications in the Two Knights Variation of the Caro-Kann against the former World Champion who’s literally written the book on such semi-open games. Their struggle reached a climactic point when Nepo played a discovered check with 29. e6. Karpov blocked the Queen’s check with 29… Bd6. Now that I have set the stage, what do you think Nepomniachtchi (white) played in the position below?

What is white’s best move? (Ian Nepomniachtchi vs Anatoly Karpov, Round 1 of the Aeroflot Open Finals played on 2/16/2013 in Moscow, Russia)

Follow The FIDE World Chess Championship 2021 chess match between reigning world champion Magnus Carlsen and challenger Ian Nepomniachtchi on The Daily Chess Musings YouTube channel.

Published by chessmusings

Chris Torres is a nationally renowned scholastic chess coach working in the San Francisco Bay Area. His classes have attracted players of strengths ranging from rank beginners to world champions. A chess professional since 1998, Chris is widely recognized as one of the main driving forces behind the explosion in popularity and sudden rise in quality of scholastic chess in California. Chris Torres served as the President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy from 2005-2020 and currently is recognized as a correspondence chess master with the United States Chess Federation. Since 1998 Chris Torres has taught 6 individual national champions as well as led multiple school teams to win national championship titles. In addition, Chris Torres has directed and taught at 10 different schools which have been California State Champions at chess. In 2011 and 2012, several former and current students of Chris Torres have been selected to represent the United States at the World Youth Chess Championships. Mr. Torres’ hobbies include playing classical guitar and getting his students to appear on the national top 100 chess rating lists.

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