Anand-Kramnik Game 1 from the 2008 World Chess Championship

2008 World Chess Championship game 1 (source:chessbase.com)

Kramnik faced off against Anand in Game 1 of the World Chess Championship Match on October 14, 2008. The “Battle of Bonn” began with little surprise as Anand chose to play one of his main weapons referred to as the Slav Defense to the Queen’s Gambit Declined. The game concluded after move 32 when a draw was agreed to.

2… c6 Anand chooses to play the Slav.

4. cxd5 Kramnik decides to use boxing strategy. Rather than go for a knock-out in the first round, Kramnik feels his opponent out and takes little risk. This move also gave Kramnik little chance for a win against Anand as the resulting positions tend to be very symmetrical and drawish.

9… 0-0 Anand breaks symmetry but continues along the well known Slav Exchange mainline.

11… Rc8 Anand avoids the trouled pawn weaknesses occurs should he have played bxc3.

12… Ng4 Anand does not play Ne4 13.Qa3 bxc6 because it would lead to problems for Black due to the weakened pawn structure. White was victorious in Ivanov vs. Torres Los Angeles, 1992 when play continued 12…bxc6 13. Rc1 c5 14. 0-0 Ne4 15.Qa3 f6.

14. Qb4 To my knowledge this is an original idea by Kramnik. Previously, 14.Qa3 Rxc6 was played in  the game Reynaldo Vera and Ivan Morovic-Fernandez in 2002. This idea can be risky for white if play continues 14.Qa3 Rxc6 15.Qxa7 Qe7 16.O-O Rfc8.

14… Rxc6 I believe this was the best move of the game. Black takes the file and avoids the previously discussed pawn weakness. 14… bxc6 15.Bd6 would also leave Kramnik with a much better Bishop.

16… Rfxc8 For the sacraficed pawn, Anand gets two very active rooks and control of the open “C” file.

17… a5 Anand stops Kramnik from playing b4 and moves a weak pawn closer to wear it can be traded.

21. e4 Kramnik attempts to create some counter play.

23… Rc2 Anand gets a rook to the “seventh.”

25. Bxe5 Kramnik finally improves his Bishop.

25… Rxa2 Anand gets his sacrificed pawn back. A position such as this between players such as these will produce a draw. Kramnik began the match cautiously while Anand spiced up the game with a pawn sacrifice leading to significant initiative which in the end was enough to secure the draw.



[Event “Anand-Kramik World Championship”]
[Site “Bonn, Germany”]
[Date “2008.10.14”]
[EventDate “2008.10.14”]
[Round “1”]
[Result “1/2-1/2”]
[White “Kramnik”]
[Black “Anand”]
[ECO “D14”]

1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.cxd5 cxd5 5.Bf4 Nc6 6.e3 Bf5 7.Nf3 e6 8.Qb3 Bb4 9.Bb5 O-O 10.Bxc6 Bxc3+ 11.Qxc3 Rc8 12.Ne5 Ng4 13.Nxg4 Bxg4 14.Qb4 Rxc6 15.Qxb7 Qc8 16.Qxc8 Rfxc8 17.O-O a5 18.f3 Bf5 19.Rfe1 Bg6 20.b3 f6 21.e4 dxe4 22.fxe4 Rd8 23.Rad1 Rc2 24.e5 fxe5 25.Bxe5 Rxa2 26.Ra1 Rxa1 27.Rxa1 Rd5 28.Rc1 Rd7 29.Rc5 Ra7 30.Rc7 Rxc7 31.Bxc7 Bc2 32.Bxa5 Bxb3  1/2-1/2

Team Kramnik

For the 2008 World Chess Championship match in Bonn, Germany, Vladimir Kramnik has selected these players as his “Seconds.” I hope my readers will visit again tomorrow to view my coverage for game 1 of the 2008 World Chess Championship Match between Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik.

Name: Peter Leko
Date of birth: 09-08-1979
Country: Hungary
Current Rating: 2763
Description: Leko became the youngest grandmaster in the history of chess in 1994, at 14  years of age. Peter went on to win the Dortmund Super Tournament in both 1999 and  2002 defeating very strong opponents in both events. In 2004d Leko came extremely  close to becoming Hungary’s first World Champion. Leko lead Kramnik by one point  going into the final game of heir match. Kramnik won this game and retianed his   title by having a split score with Leko.
Notable Game:

[Event “Classical World Chess Championship”]
[Site “Brissago SUI”]
[Date “2004.01.09”]
[EventDate “?”]
[Round “8”]
[Result “0-1”]
[White “Vladimir Kramnik”]
[Black “Peter Leko”]
[ECO “C89”]
[WhiteElo “?”]
[BlackElo “?”]
[PlyCount “64”]

1. e4 {Notes by Raymond Keene.} e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4
Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 O-O 8. c3 d5 {The dangerous
Marshall Gambit, which Kramnik had avoided in earlier games.}
9. exd5 Nxd5 10. Nxe5 Nxe5 11. Rxe5 c6 12. d4 Bd6 13. Re1 Qh4
14. g3 Qh3 15. Re4 g5 {This was first played in the game
Petrosian-Averbakh, Moscow 1947. That game saw 16 Nd2 Bf5 17
Qe2 Nf6 18 Re5 Bxe5 19 dxe5 Ng4 and Black went on to win. The
point of 15 … g5 is to prevent Rh4, while 16 Bxg5 fails to
16 … Qf5.} 16. Qf1 Qh5 17. Nd2 Bf5 18. f3 Nf6 19. Re1 Rae8
20. Rxe8 Rxe8 21. a4 Qg6 22. axb5 {Starting on the road to
perdition. White must play 22 Ne4 Nxe4 23 fxe4 when 23
… Bxe4 24 axb5 axb5 (24 … Bd3 fails to 25 Bxf7+) 25 Bxg5
is in White’s favour. In this line Black must play 22 Ne4 Bxe4
23 fxe4 Nxe4 with approximate equality.} Bd3 23. Qf2 Re2
24. Qxe2 {This was played quickly in the evident belief that
White was winning. In fact White must now turn his thoughts to
survival by 24 bxa6 Rxf2 25 Kxf2 Qh5 26 Ke3 Bxa6 27 Rxa6 Qxh2
when there is still some fight left in the game. In this line
26 Kg1 loses to 26 … Qh3 27 a7 Bxg3 28 a8=Q+ Kg7 29 hxg3
Qxg3+ 30 Kh1 g4 31 Qxc6 Qh3+ 32 Kg1 g3} Bxe2 25. bxa6 Qd3 {The
key move which Kramnik and his team had underestimated before
the game. If now 26 a7 Qe3+ 27 Kg2 Bxf3+ 28 Nxf3 Qe2+ 29 Kg1
Ng4 30 a8=Q+ Kg7 31 Qxc6 Qf2+ 32 Kh1 Qf1+ 33 Ng1 Nf2
mate. Alternatively 30 Be3 Nxe3 31 a8=Q+ Kg7 32 Nh4 gxh4 33
Qxc6 hxg3 34 hxg3 Bxg3 and mate follows. White can also play
26 Bc4 which is refuted by 26 … Qe3+ 27 Kg2 g4 28 f4 Ne4 29
a7 Qf2+ 30 Kh1 Nxd2 31 a8=Q+ Kg7 and White is defenceless.}
26. Kf2 Bxf3 27. Nxf3 Ne4+ 28. Ke1 Nxc3 {Much stronger than 28
… Qxf3. This final sacrifice lays White’s position to
waste.} 29. bxc3 Qxc3+ 30. Kf2 Qxa1 31. a7 h6 32. h4 g4 {At
the end of the game Kramnik said, sportingly: “a beautiful
game that will be remembered in the history of chess.”} 0-1


Name: Sergey Rublevsky
Date of birth: 10-15-1974
Country: Russia
Current Rating: 2702
Description: Rublevsky won the 2004 Aeroflot Open, the 2005 Russian Championship and  Aerosvit Foros 2006. In addition, he has represented Russia in five Olympiads and  two World Team Championships. During his successful career, Sergey defeated both  Anatoli Karpov and Garry Kasparov in tournament games.
Notable Game:

[Event “20th European Club Clup”]

[Site “Izmir TUR”]

[Date “2004.10.04”]

[EventDate “2004.10.03”]

[Round “2”]

[Result “1-0”]

[White “Sergei Rublevsky”]

[Black “Garry Kasparov”]

[ECO “B30”]

[WhiteElo “2649”]

[BlackElo “2813”]

[PlyCount “113”]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 e6 4. O-O Nge7 5. c3 a6 6. Ba4 c4
7. Qe2 b5 8. Bc2 Ng6 9. b3 Qc7 10. bxc4 Nf4 11. Qe3 bxc4
12. Ba3 Be7 13. Bxe7 Nxe7 14. Na3 O-O 15. Rab1 f5 16. Qb6 Qxb6
17. Rxb6 fxe4 18. Bxe4 d5 19. Bc2 Neg6 20. Bxg6 Nxg6 21. Nc2
e5 22. Ne3 Bf5 23. Nxf5 Rxf5 24. Rfb1 Raf8 25. Rxa6 e4 26. Nd4
Rxf2 27. Ne6 R2f6 28. Nxf8 Rxa6 29. Nxg6 hxg6 30. Kf2 Rxa2
31. Ke3 Kf7 32. Rb7+ Kf6 33. Rb6+ Kf7 34. Rd6 Ra5 35. h4 g5
36. hxg5 Ke7 37. Rc6 Ra1 38. Kd4 Rd1 39. Kxd5 e3 40. Re6+ Kd7
41. Rxe3 Rxd2+ 42. Kxc4 Rxg2 43. Re5 Kd6 44. Ra5 Rg4+ 45. Kb3
Rg1 46. Kb4 Rb1+ 47. Kc4 Ke6 48. Ra6+ Kf5 49. g6 Rg1 50. Kb5
Ke5 51. c4 Rb1+ 52. Kc6 Rg1 53. Kd7 Rd1+ 54. Ke7 Rb1 55. Ra5+
Kd4 56. Kf8 Rb7 57. Rf5 1-0


Name: Laurent Fressinet
Date of Birth: 11-01-1981
Country: France
Current Rating: 2673
Description: Fressinet has a very impressive overall record of +161 -82 =243. However, he  still lacks the major tournament victories to make him a household name in the chess  world.
Notable Game:

[Event “Victor Ciocaltea Mem”]

[Site “Bucharest ROM”]

[Date “2001.03.13”]

[EventDate “2001.03.04”]

[Round “10”]
[Result “1-0”]

[White “Laurent Fressinet”]

[Black “Constantin Ionescu”]

[ECO “C65”]
[WhiteElo “2581”]

[BlackElo “2504”]

[PlyCount “51”]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Bc5 5. Nxe5 Nxe5 6. d4
a6 7. Be2 Be7 8. dxe5 Nxe4 9. c4 O-O 10. Qc2 Nc5 11. Be3 c6
12. Nc3 Qc7 13. f4 a5 14. Rae1 f6 15. Kh1 fxe5 16. Bxc5 Bxc5
17. Bd3 exf4 18. Bxh7+ Kh8 19. Bg6 Qd8 20. Re5 d6 21. Qd1 f3
22. Rxf3 Bg4 23. Rh5+ Kg8 24. Bh7+ Kh8 25. Rxf8+ Qxf8 26. Bf5+

Team Anand

For the 2008 World Chess Championship match in Bonn, Germany, Viswanathan Anand has selected these players as his “Seconds.” I will review Vladimir Kramnik’s team in a later post.

Name: Peter Heine Nielsen
Date of birth: 05-24-1973
Country: Denmark
Current Rating: 2652
Description: A grandmanster with a very aggressive style who has won the Denmark Chess  Championship on several occasions. Peter has also served as the Second for Magnus Carlsen.
Notable Game:

[Event “Corus Chess Tournament: B Group”]

[Site “Wijk aan Zee NED”]

[Date “2005.01.29”]

[EventDate “2005.01.15”]

[Round “12”]

[Result “1-0”]

[White “Peter Heine Nielsen”]

[Black “Sergey Karjakin”]

[ECO “D43”]

[WhiteElo “2648”]

[BlackElo “2599”]

[PlyCount “201”]
1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 e6 5. Bg5 h6 6. Bh4 dxc4
7. e4 g5 8. Bg3 b5 9. Be2 Nbd7 10. d5 cxd5 11. exd5 Nb6
12. dxe6 Qxd1+ 13. Rxd1 Bxe6 14. Nd4 a6 15. Bf3 O-O-O 16. O-O
Bc5 17. Nc6 Rxd1 18. Rxd1 Nbd7 19. Na5 Kd8 20. Nb7+ Kc8
21. Nxc5 Nxc5 22. Be5 Ncd7 23. Rxd7 Bxd7 24. Bxf6 Re8 25. h3
Re6 26. Nd5 a5 27. a3 b4 28. axb4 axb4 29. Bd4 c3 30. Nxb4
cxb2 31. Bxb2 Kd8 32. Nd3 Ke7 33. Nc5 Rb6 34. Ba3 Rb1+ 35. Kh2
Ra1 36. Bb4 Rb1 37. Ba3 Ra1 38. Bb4 Rb1 39. Nd3+ Ke8 40. Bd6
Rb6 41. Bc7 Rb5 42. Ne5 Ke7 43. Nc4 Be6 44. Bd6+ Kf6 45. Ne3
Rb2 46. Nd1 Rb3 47. Ne3 Rb2 48. Nd1 Rb3 49. Bh5 Kg7 50. Ne3
Rd3 51. Bc5 f6 52. Bd1 Rd2 53. Kg1 Ra2 54. Bd4 Rd2 55. Bc5 Ra2
56. Bc2 h5 57. Bd4 h4 58. Kf1 Kf7 59. Ke1 Kg7 60. Kd1 Kf7
61. Kc1 Kg7 62. Bb2 Kf7 63. Bd3 Ra4 64. f3 Ra8 65. Nc2 Rc8
66. Kb1 Bc4 67. Be4 Rd8 68. Kc1 Bd3 69. Bxd3 Rxd3 70. Nd4 Kg6
71. Kc2 Re3 72. Kd2 Re8 73. f4 gxf4 74. Nf3 Kh5 75. Ne1 Kg5
76. Bd4 Rd8 77. Ke2 Re8+ 78. Kf2 Re6 79. Nf3+ Kh5 80. Kg1 Ra6
81. Bf2 Ra1+ 82. Kh2 Ra2 83. Bxh4 Kg6 84. Be1 Kf5 85. Bc3 Ra3
86. Bd4 Rd3 87. Kg1 Ra3 88. Kf1 Ra2 89. Bc3 Ra3 90. Bd2 Ra2
91. Ke2 Ra3 92. Nd4+ Ke5 93. Nc2 Rb3 94. Ne1 Ke4 95. Nf3 Ra3
96. Bb4 Ra2+ 97. Nd2+ Kf5 98. Kf3 Ra4 99. Bc5 Ra1 100. Nb3 Kg5
101. Nxa1 1-0


Name: Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Date of birth: 12-05-1979
Country: Uzbekistan
Current Rating: 2679
Description: In 2004 he became FIDE World Champion by winning the knockout tournament in  Tripoli. At this event, he defeated Veselin Topalov, Michael Adams, Vassily  Ivanchuk, and Alexander Grischuk in match play. Kasimdzhanov was scheduled to play a  match with Garry Kasparov in 2005 but Kasparov withdrew before playing the match.
Notable Game:

[Event “FIDE World Championship”]

[Site “San Luis ARG”]

[Date “2005.10.01”]

[EventDate “2005.09.28”]

[Round “4”]

[Result “1-0”]

[White “Rustam Kasimdzhanov”]

[Black “Viswanathan Anand”]

[ECO “B90”]
[WhiteElo “2670”]

[BlackElo “2788”]

[PlyCount “75”]

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Be3 Ng4
7. Bg5 h6 8. Bh4 g5 9. Bg3 Bg7 10. h3 Ne5 11. Nf5 Bxf5
12. exf5 Nbc6 13. Nd5 e6 14. fxe6 fxe6 15. Ne3 O-O 16. Be2 Qe7
17. O-O Rad8 18. Bh5 Kh8 19. Re1 d5 20. a4 Nc4 21. Nxc4 dxc4
22. Qg4 Qb4 23. Qxe6 Rd2 24. Rad1 Nd4 25. Qe4 Nf5 26. Be5 Rxf2
27. Bf3 Rd2 28. Bxg7+ Kxg7 29. Qe5+ Rf6 30. a5 Nh4 31. Qc7+
Rf7 32. Qe5+ Rf6 33. Bh5 Ng6 34. Bxg6 Rxd1 35. Rxd1 Kxg6
36. Qe4+ Kg7 37. Rd7+ Kg8 38. Qh7+ 1-0
Name: Radoslav Wojtaszek
Date of birth: 01-17-1987
Country: Poland
Current Rating: 2599
Description: Radoslav’s accomplishments include winning the 2004 World Youth Chess  Championships (U-18), the 2004 Cracovia Open with 7.5/9 and the Polish Open in 2005.
Notable Game:

[Event “WYCC 2004 – B18”]
[Site “Creta Maris Conference Hotel”]
[Date “2004.11.13”]
[Round “11.1”]
[White “Wojtaszek, Radoslaw”]
[Black “Sulashvili, Malkhaz”]
[Result “1-0”]
[ECO “D45”]
[WhiteElo “2536”]
[BlackElo “2326”]
[PlyCount “113”]
[EventDate “2004.11.04”]

1. c4 c6 2. Nf3 d5 3. e3 Nf6 4. Qc2 e6 5. b3 Bd6 6. Bb2 O-O 7. Be2 Nbd7 8. Nc3
a6 9. d4 Qe7 10. O-O e5 11. cxd5 cxd5 12. dxe5 Nxe5 13. Rfd1 Be6 14. Nd4 Ba3
15. Bxa3 Qxa3 16. Qc1 Qxc1 17. Raxc1 Rac8 18. Na4 Rxc1 19. Rxc1 Rc8 20. Rxc8+
Bxc8 21. f3 h5 22. Kf2 Kf8 23. Ke1 Ke7 24. Kd2 g6 25. Bd1 Kd6 26. Bc2 Bd7 27.
Nc3 Nc6 28. Nce2 Ne8 29. Nxc6 bxc6 30. e4 dxe4 31. Bxe4 Nc7 32. Bd3 c5 33. Nc3
f5 34. f4 Be6 35. g3 Bf7 36. Na4 Nd5 37. Bc4 Be6 38. Nb2 Nc7 39. Bf1 Ke7 40.
Nc4 Bxc4 41. Bxc4 a5 42. Kc3 Ne8 43. Kb2 Nf6 44. Ka3 h4 45. gxh4 Nh5 46. Ka4
Nxf4 47. Kxa5 Kd6 48. Kb6 Nd5+ 49. Kb7 Ne3 50. Be2 c4 51. bxc4 Kc5 52. a4 Kb4
53. c5 Kxc5 54. a5 Nd5 55. a6 Nb6 56. a7 f4 57. h3 1-0
Name: Surya Shekhar Ganguly
Country: India
Current Rating: 2631
Description: Ganguly won the Indian National Championship four years straight from 2004 to  2007.
Notable Game:

[Event “FIDE World Cup”]
[Site “0:00:00-0:03:21”]
[Date “2005.11.28”]
[EventDate “2005.11.27”]
[Round “1”]
[Result “0-1”]
[White “Hikaru Nakamura”]
[Black “Surya Sekhar Ganguly”]
[ECO “C44”]
[WhiteElo “2710”]
[BlackElo “2432”]
[PlyCount “104”]

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Bc4 Nf6 5.e5 d5 6.Bb5 Ne4 7.Nxd4
Bd7 8.Bxc6 bxc6 9.O-O Bc5 10.f3 Ng5 11.f4 Ne4 12.Be3 Qb8
13.Qc1 Bxd4 14.Bxd4 c5 15.Bf2 Bb5 16.Rd1 Nxf2 17.Kxf2 Bc6
18.Nd2 Qb6 19.c4 d4 20.Qc2 O-O 21.f5 Rad8 22.Rf1 Ba8 23.Kg1 d3
24.Qc3 Rd4 25.Rf2 Re8 26.Re1 Qh6 27.Qa3 Qg5 28.g3 h5 29.Qxc5
h4 30.Qxd4 hxg3 31.Kf1 gxf2 32.Qxf2 Qg4 33.f6 gxf6 34.Re3 Qd1+
35.Qe1 Qxe1+ 36.Kxe1 fxe5 37.Rxd3 f5 38.Rd7 e4 39.Nb3 f4
40.Nd4 e3 41.Nf5 Kh8 42.Nh4 Kg8 43.Ng6 f3 44.Re7 Rxe7 45.Nxe7+
Kf7 46.Nf5 e2 47.Nd4 Kf6 48.Nb5 Ke5 49.Nxc7 Be4 50.Nb5 Bd3
51.b3 Ke4 52.Nc7 Bxc4 0-1

My Friends are Better Than Yours… Anand and Kramnik Get Seconds

In under 2 days Anand will play Kramnik!
In under 2 days Anand will play Kramnik!

   The upcoming 12 game World Championship match between Anand and Kramnik is creating internet rumors faster than Alexandra Kosteniuk makes blitz moves in China. Most of these rumors seem to be speculation on opening choices and who is going to be the “Second” for Anand and Kramnik. A “Second” refers to a chess players choice of another strong chess player to help him/her prepare for a particular opponent. Generally this early preparation focuses on finding new ideas and weaknesses in an opponent’s opening repertoire. The role of the Second was arguably much more important in the time before large chess databases and strong computer engines. With the onset of the computer dominated age of chess, we are also seeing match play that has a much shorter structure and therefor less games to try prepared innovations. The upcoming match between Anand and Kramnik is only scheduled for 12 rounds. I am confident that both Anand and Kramnik are capable of coming up with six very good ideas as to what to try with each color. For the upcoming Anand vs. Kramnik match, a Second’s primary role will likely be acting as the flashy Rybka yielding intimidator in a world champion contender’s entourage. Basically a “my friend is stronger than your friend” ornament meant to impress upon the chess world that the player that attracts friends/disciples with higher ratings must be the next chess messiah.
   So who have Anand and Kramnik chosen for this critical role? Viswanathan Anand’s Second is very likely to be the 2786 rated Grand Master from Norway, Magnus Carlsen. Born in 1990 in Tønsberg, Magnus played his first tournament at the age of eight and was coached at the Norwegian High School for Top Athletes by the country’s top player, Grandmaster (GM) Simen Agdestein. On 26 April 2004 Carlsen became a Grandmaster at the age of 13 years, 4 months, and 27 days, the third youngest Grandmaster age in history. Carlsen and Anand are reported to get along very well and have been seen dining together as well as reinacting scenes from Monty Python’s Flying Circus. If for no other reason, Magnus is a good choice because he will likely be able to keep Viswanathan Anand more relaxed than any other top ten rated player. Even still, it seems odd to have Anand’s Second be higher rated than Anand.
   Vladimir Kramnik’s Second is confirmed to be the 2747 former World Championship Match participant from Hungary, Peter Leko. Leko was born on September 8, 1979 in Subotica, Yugoslavia. He became a grandmaster in 1994 at the age of 14 years and in doing so became the youngest grandmaster ever. This choice makes sense for Kramnik as Leko’s style is very similar to Kramnik’s solid play. The choice seems a little odd in that from September 25-October 18, 2004 Leko was attempting to take the World Chess Champion title from Kramnik in a match of their own. Leko led by a point with just one game left to play. Kramnik managed to win the last game, tying the match 7-7 (+2 -2 =10), which entitled him to remain the reigning “classical” world champion.

1 day and 21 hours left until the World Chess Championship 2008 begins!

Alexandra Kosteniuk Takes the Gold in Blitz Chess


It appears as though chess has a new superstar. After taking the Women’s World Rapid Chess Championship and the Women’s World Chess Championship titles Alexandra Kosteniuk won gold in the 1st World Mind Sports Games Women’s Blitz Chess Individual event in Beijing, China. Under her father’s(Konstantin Vladimirovich Kosteniuk) coaching and guidance, Alexandra became a Woman Grand Master at age 14, an International Master at 16, and a Grand Master at 20. Her climb to the top started by winning the Girls U10 European Championship in Herculane in 1994, the Girls Under 12 European Championship in Rimavaska Sobota in 1996, and the Girls Under 12 World Championship in Minorca in 1996. At the age of 17, in 2001, she was runner up to Zhu Chen for the Women’s World Championship. In 2006, she won the Chess960 Women’s World Championship and still possesses the title. In September 2008, Alexandra became the 14th Women’s World Chess Champion after winning the final against Yifan Hou by 2.5 – 1.5.  In her free time, Alexandra enjoys appearing in films, fashion magazines, doing many product promotions, and walking the catwalk as a successful fashion model.

Below are some fantastic examples of Alexandra Kosteniuk’s phenominal chess abilities. The final game in the list is the sudden death blitz game Kosteniuk played to win the 1st World Mind Sports Games Womens Blitz Chess Individual event.
[Event “Ch World (cadets) (under 12) (g)”]

[Site “Cala Galdana (Spain)”]

[Date “1996.??.??”]

[EventDate “?”]

[Round “11”]

[Result “1-0”]

[White “Alexandra Kosteniuk”]

[Black “Nadezhda Kosintseva”]

[ECO “C29”]

[WhiteElo “?”]

[BlackElo “?”]

[PlyCount “135”]
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.f4 d5 4.fxe5 Nxe4 5.d3 Nxc3 6.bxc3 d4
7.Nf3 Nc6 8.Be2 Bc5 9.c4 O-O 10.O-O Qe7 11.Bf4 Re8 12.Qe1 Bf5
13.Qg3 Bg6 14.Rab1 Nb4 15.Rb2 Rab8 16.Re1 Nc6 17.Bf1 Nd8
18.Bg5 Qd7 19.Bxd8 Qxd8 20.Ng5 f6 21.Nf3 fxe5 22.Rxe5 Bd6
23.Rxe8+ Qxe8 24.Qf2 c5 25.Rb1 Bf4 26.Kh1 Be3 27.Qg3 b6 28.Ne5
Bf5 29.Be2 Rb7 30.Bf3 Re7 31.Bc6 Qh5 32.Bf3 Qe8 33.Bc6 Qh5
34.Bf3 Qg5 35.Bd5+ Kf8 36.Rf1 g6 37.Nc6 Qxg3 38.hxg3 Ke8
39.Nxe7 Kxe7 40.g4 Bd7 41.Rf7+ Kd6 42.Rxh7 g5 43.Bf3 a6 44.g3
Kc7 45.Be4 Kd6 46.Bf3 Kc7 47.Kg2 b5 48.Bd5 Kd8 49.Rh6 a5
50.Rb6 b4 51.Ra6 a4 52.Bc6 Bxg4 53.Bxa4 Bd2 54.Rc6 Ke7 55.Rxc5
Be6 56.Ra5 g4 57.Bb3 Bc3 58.c5 Bd7 59.Ra7 Kd8 60.Bd5 Bc8
61.Rg7 Bd2 62.c6 Bf5 63.Bc4 Bc8 64.c7+ Ke8 65.Rg8+ Kd7 66.Be6+
Kxe6 67.Rxc8 Kd7 68.Rd8+ 1-0


[Event “FIDE WCh Women KO”]

[Site “Moscow RUS”]

[Date “2001.12.07”]

[EventDate “2001.11.27”]

[Round “5.3”]

[Result “0-1”]

[White “Yuhua Xu”]

[Black “Alexandra Kosteniuk”]

[ECO “B31”]

[WhiteElo “2485”]

[BlackElo “2455”]

[PlyCount “124”]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 g6 4. O-O Bg7 5. Re1 Nf6 6. e5 Nd5
7. Nc3 Nc7 8. Bxc6 dxc6 9. Ne4 b6 10. Nf6+ Kf8 11. Ne4 h6
12. h3 Kg8 13. b3 Ne6 14. d3 Kh7 15. Ng3 Nd4 16. Bb2 Be6
17. c4 Qd7 18. Re4 Nf5 19. Nf1 Rhd8 20. g4 Nd6 21. Re2 Nb7
22. Ng3 a5 23. a4 Kg8 24. Rd2 h5 25. Ng5 Bh6 26. f4 Bxg5
27. fxg5 hxg4 28. h4 Kg7 29. h5 Rh8 30. h6+ Kh7 31. Qf1 Rad8
32. Qf4 Rhf8 33. Rf1 Qc8 34. Qe3 Rd7 35. Ne2 Nd8 36. Nf4 Bf5
37. e6 fxe6 38. Qe5 Rg8 39. Rh2 Rd4 40. Bxd4 cxd4 41. Qxd4 Nf7
42. Qe3 Nxg5 43. Kf2 Nf3 44. Rg2 Rf8 45. d4 g5 46. Nh5 Bg6
47. Ng3 Rf4 48. Ne2 Re4 49. Qc3 Qf8 50. Kg3 Qxh6 51. Kf2 Qf8
52. Kg3 Qb8+ 53. Kf2 Nh4 54. Rg3 Kg8 55. Qd2 Nf3 56. Qc3 Rxe2+
57. Kxe2 Qxg3 58. Qe3 Kg7 59. d5 cxd5 60. cxd5 Qf4 61. Qxf4
gxf4 62. dxe6 Nd4+ 0-1


[Event “FIDE WCh Women KO”]

[Site “Moscow RUS”]

[Date “2001.12.13”]

[EventDate “2001.11.27”]

[Round “6.4”]

[Result “0-1”]

[White “Zhu Chen”]

[Black “Alexandra Kosteniuk”]

[ECO “A80”]

[WhiteElo “2497”]

[BlackElo “2455”]

[PlyCount “114”]
1. d4 f5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. g3 e6 4. Bg2 d5 5. O-O Bd6 6. b3 Qe7
7. c4 c6 8. Bb2 O-O 9. Qc1 a5 10. Ba3 Na6 11. Bxd6 Qxd6 12. c5
Qe7 13. Ne5 Nd7 14. Nxd7 Bxd7 15. f4 b6 16. cxb6 Qb4 17. Qc3
Qxb6 18. Nd2 Rfc8 19. Rfc1 c5 20. Nf3 Rc7 21. e3 Rac8 22. Qd2
a4 23. Ne5 Be8 24. dxc5 Nxc5 25. bxa4 Bxa4 26. Rab1 Qa7
27. Qd4 Be8 28. Rc2 Qa3 29. Qc3 Qa4 30. Qb2 Qa6 31. Bf1 Qa7
32. Qd4 Qa3 33. Qc3 Qa4 34. Qb2 Qe4 35. Re1 g5 36. Bg2 Qa4
37. Rec1 Qa5 38. Qc3 Qa7 39. Qd4 Qa3 40. Qc3 Nb3 41. Qxb3 Qxb3
42. axb3 Rxc2 43. Rxc2 Rxc2 44. fxg5 Re2 45. Nf3 Rxe3 46. Nd4
Kf7 47. Bf1 Bd7 48. Kf2 Rc3 49. b4 e5 50. Nf3 Ke6 51. Nh4 e4
52. g6 hxg6 53. Nxg6 d4 54. h4 Rc2+ 55. Ke1 Rc1+ 56. Kf2 e3+
57. Kg1 Bb5 0-1


[Event “FIDE WCh Women KO”]

[Site “Moscow RUS”]

[Date “2001.11.28”]

[EventDate “2001.11.28”]

[Round “1.2”]

[Result “1-0”]

[White “Alexandra Kosteniuk”]

[Black “Jennifer Shahade”]

[ECO “B99”]

[WhiteElo “2455”]

[BlackElo “2295”]

[PlyCount “79”]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 Nf6 4. Nc3 cxd4 5. Nxd4 a6 6. Bg5 e6
7. f4 Be7 8. Qf3 Nbd7 9. O-O-O Qc7 10. g4 b5 11. Bxf6 gxf6
12. f5 Ne5 13. Qh3 O-O 14. Qh6 Kh8 15. Rg1 Rg8 16. Rg3 Bd7
17. Rh3 Rg7 18. g5 Qd8 19. Nce2 fxg5 20. fxe6 Ng4 21. Qh5 Nf6
22. Qf3 fxe6 23. Qb3 Qc8 24. Rc3 Qg8 25. Ng3 h5 26. Nc6 h4
27. e5 dxe5 28. Nh5 Bxc6 29. Nxf6 Bxf6 30. Rxc6 g4 31. Rxe6
Bg5+ 32. Kb1 Bf4 33. Rdd6 Rd8 34. Qd5 Rxd6 35. Qxd6 e4 36. Qd5
Bxh2 37. Qxe4 Qh7 38. Qc6 Qf5 39. Bd3 Qf3 40. Re8+ 1-0
[Event “Women’s World Championship”]

[Site “Nalchik RUS”]

[Date “2008.09.14”]

[EventDate “2008.09.14”]

[Round “6.1”]

[Result “0-1”]

[White “Yifan Hou”]

[Black “Alexandra Kosteniuk”]

[ECO “C90”]

[WhiteElo “2557”]

[BlackElo “2510”]

[PlyCount “96”]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5
7. Bb3 O-O 8. a3 d6 9. c3 Bg4 10. d3 Na5 11. Bc2 c5 12. h3 Bd7
13. d4 Qc7 14. d5 c4 15. Nbd2 Nb7 16. Nf1 Nc5 17. g4 h5
18. N3h2 hxg4 19. hxg4 Qc8 20. f3 Nh7 21. Ng3 Bg5 22. Nf5 Qd8
23. Kg2 g6 24. Ng3 Kg7 25. Rh1 Rh8 26. Nhf1 Qf6 27. Be3 Bxe3
28. Nxe3 Ng5 29. Qe2 Rag8 30. Raf1 Qf4 31. Rxh8 Rxh8 32. Rh1
Rxh1 33. Nxh1 Nd3 34. Bxd3 cxd3 35. Qf2 d2 36. Ng3 Nxf3
37. Qxf3 Bxg4 38. Qf2 d1=Q 39. Nxd1 Bxd1 40. Qe1 Bf3+ 41. Kg1
f5 42. exf5 gxf5 43. Qf2 Kg6 44. b3 e4 45. c4 bxc4 46. bxc4
Qg5 47. c5 f4 48. cxd6 fxg3 0-1


[Event “Chess”]
[Site “Beijing”]
[Date “2008.10.05”]
[Round “17”]
[White “(RUS) Kosteniuk A.”]
[Black “(BUL) Stefanova A.”]
[Result “1-0”]
[WhiteTitle “GM”]
[WhiteElo “2525”]
[WhiteCountry “RUS”]
[BlackTitle “GM”]
[BlackElo “2548”]
[BlackCountry “BUL”]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Bc5 6. c3 b5 7. Bb3 d6
8. d4 Bb6 9. a4 Bg4 10. h3 Bh5 11. Bg5 Rb8 12. axb5 axb5 13. Qd3 O-O
14. Nbd2 h6 15. Bh4 g5 16. Bg3 exd4 17. cxd4 Bg6 18. Qc3 Ne7 19. Rfe1
Ra8 20. Rxa8 Qxa8 21. d5 Nh5 22. Kh2 Nxg3 23. fxg3 Kh7 24. Nd4 Qa5 25.
N2f3 Qxc3 26. bxc3 Rb8 27. g4 b4 28. c4 Ra8 29. Nf5 Ng8 30. e5 dxe5
31. Nxe5 Bxf5 32. gxf5 Re8 33. Nd3 Rxe1 34. Nxe1 Ne7 35. g4 Bd4 36.
Nd3 Bc3 37. c5 Kg7 38. d6 cxd6 39. cxd6 Nc6 40. Ba4 Nd8 41. Kg2 Kf8
42. Nc5 Bd2 43. Kf3 Bf4 44. d7 Ke7 45. Ke4 Bd6 46. Nb3 f6 47. Kd5 Bg3
48. Nd4 Bd6 49. Nb3 Bg3 50. Na5 Be5 51. Nc4 Bg3 52. Nb6 Bc7 53. Nc8+
Kf7 54. Kc4 Ba5 55. Kb5 Bc7 56. Kxb4 Nb7 57. Bb3+ Kf8 58. Kb5 Nd8 59.
Bd5 Bf4 60. Kb6 Bg3 61. Na7 Ke7 62. Be6 Bf2+ 63. Ka6 Bxa7 1-0

Where I Was Ten Years Ago.

Thanks to Google’s ten year  anniversary, the famed search engine has added an option to have a google search  show the user what he or she would have seen ten years in the past. This feature also includes the cached pages from a decade ago. Below is the description of my chess activities from ten years ago taken directly from http://mebers.aol.com/chesslessons I challenge the readers of this blog to cross reference the accomplishments of the Weibel and Argonaut chess programs. Also, be sure to check out http://google.com to see what the other notable chess personalities were up to “back in the day.” To see current information on my chess activities, please visit http://ChessandMusic.com 

Chris Torres in 1998!
Chris Torres in 1998!


Below is the description of my chess activities from ten years ago:

The Chess Coach

Teacher of Champions

I am Chris Torres, a scholastic chess coach who lives in San Jose California. I am the Supervisor of Instructors for Success Chess and also teach private lessons. Currently, I am the head coach for Warm Springs(Fremont), YoYo Chinese School (Fremont), and Challenger Schools(Pomeroy/Santa Clara, and Sunnyvale campuses), and a teacher at the prestigious Weibel Chess Club (Fremont). I also teach at Argonaut(Saratoga) and Gomes School (Fremont). My students have many success stories including both team and individual national and state championships. As a chess coach, I aspire to introduce children to the wonderful game as well as give them a taste of success. Students range from kindergartners to sixth graders. If you are interested in expanding a child’s logic, self-esteem, and creativity please email me at chesslessons@aol.com to find out the rates for private, semi-private, and group lessons.

5 Days Until the 2008 World Chess Championships in Bonn, Germany

   Anand and Kramnik both enjoy playing the Petroff Defense(1.e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6) and I would be very surprised not to see it used in their 2008 World Championship Chess Match. Both players know the theory very well in this opening, so any game they play could lead to new ideas for the world to use.
   In the game below, Kramnik plays 17… Qf5 in order not to repeat a loss he had suffered against Anand when he used 17… Bf5. Anand’s choice for move 24 seems odd and could be inaccurate if you are playing for a win. 24.Rxe7 Rxe7 25.dxe7 Nf6 seems more natural and White maintains a small edge. However, Anand’s 24. dxe7 is very interesting and he used a great deal of his time finally deciding on this move. Kramnik responded very quickly with 24… f6 and seems to have a well conceived plan as to how to take the advantage from his opponent. In fact, by the time Kramnik plays 29… c5 he is considered to be winning by all my chess engines. Don’t be fooled by your computer’s later assessment however. I have seen many esteemed chess players proclaiming various ways for Kramnik to win the endgame. After Anand plays 42. Kf2 there is no opportunity for Kramnik to turn his advantage into a win. Kramnik does his best to entice a blunder from his opponent but Anand will have none of that. I have spent many hours studying the endgame from this game and I would encourage any serious student of the game to do the same. 
[Event “WCh”]
[Site “Mexico City MEX”]
[Date “2007.??.??”]
[White “Anand,V”]
[Black “Kramnik,V”]
[Round “3”]
[Result “1/2-1/2”]
[WhiteElo “2792”]
[BlackElo “2769”]
[ECO “C42”]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nxe5 d6 4. Nf3 Nxe4 5. d4
d5 6. Bd3 Nc6 7. O-O Be7 8. c4 Nb4 9. Be2
O-O 10. Nc3 Bf5 11. a3 Nxc3 12. bxc3 Nc6 13. Re1
Re8 14. cxd5 Qxd5 15. Bf4 Rac8 16. Qa4 Bd7 17. Qc2
Qf5 18. Qxf5 Bxf5 19. Bb5 Bd7 20. d5 Ne5 21. Bxd7
Nxd7 22. Bxc7 Rxc7 23. d6 Rxc3 24. dxe7 f6 25. Rad1
Rc7 26. Nd4 Ne5 27. f4 Nc6 28. Nxc6 bxc6 29. Rd6
c5 30. Ree6 c4 31. Rc6 Rexe7 32. Rxc4 Rxc4 33. Rxe7
Ra4 34. Rb7 h6 35. f5 Rxa3 36. Kf2 h5 37. g3
a5 38. Ra7 a4 39. h4 Ra2+ 40. Kf3 a3 41. Ke3
Ra1 42. Kf2 Kf8 43. Kg2 a2 44. Kh2 Ke8 45. Kg2
Kd8 46. Kh2 Kc8 47. Kg2 Kb8 48. Ra3 Kb7 49. Ra4
Kb6 50. Ra8 Kc5 51. Ra7 Kd5 52. Ra4 Ke5 53. Ra5+
Ke4 54. Kh2 Kf3 55. Ra3+ Kf2 56. Ra4 Kf1 57. Kh1
Ke1 58. Kg2 Kd1 59. Ra7 Rc1 60. Rxa2 Rc2+ 61. Rxc2
Kxc2 62. Kf3 Kd3 63. g4 hxg4+ 64. Kxg4 Ke4 65. Kh5
Kxf5  1/2-1/2

Unfair Criticism of Kramnik

Tonight I attempt to defend Vladimir Kramnik from those who cast stones at the former World Chess Champion. I believe the upcoming 2008 World Chess Championship will be an exciting event played between two outstanding chess players who are wonderful ambassadors for the game of chess. Below are my opinions about the three most common critical myths that haunt Kramnik.

1) Kramnik plays “boring” chess.

   Kramnik has a very solid style that sometimes receives criticism for being boring. The fact that he can draw at will as black actually makes hims very exciting to admire in chess matches. If he gets ahead of Anand in the match, Anand will have to try radical ideas to make a come back. In this way, Kramnik’s solid play actually inspires exciting games.

2) Kramnik consults a computer in the bathroom.

   This is simply not true. From what I’ve seen there’s no conclusive evidence to support cheating by Kramnik, just circumstantial tid-bits that seem important out of context and are perpetuated by Topalov’s fans.

3) Kramnik refuses to recognise Anand as the World Chess Champion.

   Those critical of Kramnik enjoy taking his comments in the interview quoted below out of context. Perhaps to some deranged minds creating controversy where it does not exist adds excitement to the match.

EURO: You reach arguable better results during matches then in tournaments. Traditionally, the World Champion title was to be won in matches. A challenger had to beat the reigning World Champion in the direct fight in order to become the new World Champion. The only historical exception was the situation just after the end of the Second World War, when Alexander Aljechin had died during his reign and so a tournament was played.

KRAMNIK: You can call me an old- fashion guy, but I still believe that the real chess championship is actually a match between the best players, not a tournament. So that is going to be the match which will take place between me and Vishy Anand this autumn in Bonn. The tournament in Mexico which you are asking me about was from my point of view a huge compromise.

The problem was that the situation around the World Champion title was still difficult even after my unification match against Top alov. There was a need to find an acceptable compromise. After the unification my aim was to come back to a final match contest for the world champion crown under the umbrella of FIDE. In all the years after defeating Kasparov I felt this responsibility. Anything else would not have been in accordance with chesshistory, and also not with the desire of the overwhelming majority of chess fans all over the world.

It was always my goal to end the unhappy period when the World Chess Federation organised their ridiculous knock-out or round robin tournaments for the title. The problem was that the tournament in Mexico had already been agreed and I was informed that if I had refused to play there, the event would not have taken place at all. This would have ended in another impasse. So in order not to cause another split I, in the end, agreed to compromise and played the tournament, which FIDEcalled World Championship. The truth is I did not win in Mexico, the winner was Anand, and I will compete against him this year in the real contest for the chess crown. I attach ten times more attention to the coming match in Germany – consequently this event is ten times more important to me than the tournament in Mexico. 

EURO: So d o you consider Vishy Anand to be the World Champion or not?

KRAMNIK: It is not a question of simply yes or no. Anand won the tournament, which was called the World Championship Tournament, and I competed in that tournament as well. The I nternational C hess F ederation FIDE agreed to do it this way, so I have no right not to consider him the World Champion. A question is, however: what is the value of such a title? Similary I considered Kasimdzhanov to be a FIDE Champion, after winning the knock-out tournament in Libya. However I did not consider him to be the real champion. He had won a tournament and by FIDE’s definition he was a FIDE World Champion . But the value of this title was lower compared to the classical title won in a one-to-one match by Champions like Lasker, Spasski , Kasparov or me. The winner of the match Kramnik -Anand won’t be World Champion only from a legal point of view , he will be considered to be the World Champion and best chess player by the entire public.

The interview was published in the magazin “Weekly Euro”.

Kramnik vs. Anand 2008 (preview game revisited)

Cathy Rogers
source:Cathy Rogers

Seven Days until the Anand vs. Kramnik 2008 World Championship Match. I am revisiting a game they played in 2007 at the request of several fans of my blog.

Kramnik-Anand 9/13/2007 was a Moscow variation of the Semi-Slav Defense. The Moscow variation which starts after 5…h6 can lead to very sharp play especially because Anand gambits a pawn by playing 6. Bh4. This game was identical to a 2006 game between Radjabov and Anand for 16 moves. Then Kramnik played 17. Qh5. Anand answers by sacrificing an exchange to achieve a position where he obtains a powerful knight and an extra pawn with move 21. Rxd6. If Kramnik had played 29. Qg5 play would have continued 29…Ne2 30. Kh1 Qh2 31. Kh2 Rh8 32. Qh4 Rh4#. Another example of the difference between the chess elite and the rest of the world. The resulting end game shows how a powerfully placed knight can equal a rook. Kramnik missed 35 Qh6! after 35…Qd6 36 Qxg5 f6 37 Qg8 Rd8 38 Qh7 Rd7 39 Qh4. After running computer analysis on that line I feel Kramnik would have had much better winning chances.  

[Event “WCh”]
[Site “Mexico City MEX”]
[Date “2007.09.24”]
[Round “10”]
[White “Kramnik, V.”]
[Black “Anand, V.”]
[Result “1/2-1/2”]
[ECO “D43”]
[WhiteElo “2769”]
[BlackElo “2792”]
[PlyCount “81”]
[EventDate “2007.09.13”]

1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 e6 5. Bg5 h6 6. Bh4 dxc4 7. e4 g5 8. Bg3 b5
9. Be2 Bb7 10. O-O Nbd7 11. Ne5 Bg7 12. Nxd7 Nxd7 13. Bd6 a6 14. Bh5 Bf8 15.
Bxf8 Rxf8 16. e5 Qb6 17. b3 O-O-O 18. bxc4 Nxe5 19. c5 Qa5 20. Ne4 Qb4 21. Nd6+
Rxd6 22. cxd6 Nd7 23. a4 Qxd6 24. Bf3 Nb6 25. axb5 cxb5 26. Bxb7+ Kxb7 27. Qh5
Nd5 28. Qxh6 Nf4 29. Kh1 Qd5 30. f3 Rd8 31. Qg7 Rd7 32. Qf8 Ne2 33. Rfe1 Nxd4
34. Red1 e5 35. Rac1 Qd6 36. Qg8 f6 37. Rc8 a5 38. h3 a4 39. Qe8 Kb6 40. Rb8+
Ka5 41. Ra8+ 1/2-1/2

Bakersfield Chess Teacher

Here is a nice recomendation I received from a distinguished Disctrict Superintendent. The Torres Chess and Music Academy  offers schools in California the very best chess experience possible. For more information please visit http://www.ChessandMusic.com


8 July 2008


Letter of Recommendation for  Chris Torres


For the past 2 years Chris Torres has worked with Vineland School District on building its chess program. He has worked both as an instructor for all

5th grade students (4 classrooms) and as an after school coach.  I say without hesitation that

 he did an excellent job. 


I found Chris Torres to be an excellent instructor with solid classroom management skills.   He taught the students very well thought out chess lessons.  He was punctual and very conscientious about his duty.  He has a passion for chess which rubbed off on the students.  But most of all he had good rapport with the students.  The students liked going to chess.  They felt good about themselves when they played it. 


Overall, I believe you would be very fortunate to have Chris Torres as a chess instructor.





Adolph Wirth

District Superintendent