[Event "Tata Steel Chess Masters 2023"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2023.01.16"] [Round "3"] [White "Carlsen, Magnus"] [Black "Ding, Liren"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [WhiteElo "2859"] [BlackElo "2811"] [PlyCount "73"] [EventDate "2023.??.??"] [TimeControl "6000+30"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 d5 3. Bf4 c5 4. e3 e6 5. c3 Bd6 6. Bb5+ Nc6 7. Bxc6+ {Carlsen creates an imbalance, trading one of his bishops to give Black a weak pawn on c6.} bxc6 8. Bxd6 Qxd6 9. Qa4 {Carlsen follows up by immediately adding pressure to c6-pawn.} O-O 10. O-O cxd4 11. cxd4 c5 {Ding wisely use his c-pawn to influence the center and gets it off the weak and backwards c6-square.} 12. Rc1 (12. Qa3 Ne4) 12... c4 13. b3 Bd7 14. Qa5 cxb3 15. axb3 {At this point, White has the early lead in activity with a rook on the c-file and queen and rook aiming down the a-file at the isolated a7-pawn. However, Black has a solid position otherwise and White's isolated b3-pawn as a target.} Rfb8 16. Nbd2 Rb5 17. Qc7 Ne8 18. Qxd6 Nxd6 19. Ne5 Be8 20. Nd3 a5 {Ding looks to activate or exchange his isolated pawn, so that he has no weaknesses in his position.} 21. f3 Rb7 {An insightful maneuver, preparing Ra7 and a4.} 22. Ra2 Rba7 23. Kf2 a4 24. Rca1 Nc8 25. h4 Kf8 26. g4 axb3 27. Rxa7 Rxa7 28. Rxa7 Nxa7 29. Nxb3 {With the isolated pawns for both sides traded away, we've reached an equal endgame.} Nb5 30. Nbc5 Ke7 31. Nf4 h6 32. g5 hxg5 33. hxg5 Nc7 34. Nh5 Kf8 35. Nf4 Ke7 36. Nh5 Kf8 37. Nf4 1/2-1/2 [Event "Chess.com"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2023.01.16"] [Round "3"] [White "Rapport, Richard"] [Black "So, Wesley"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [WhiteElo "2740"] [BlackElo "2760"] [PlyCount "50"] [EventDate "2023.??.??"] [TimeControl "6000+30"] 1. c4 c5 2. Nc3 g6 3. e3 Nf6 4. d4 cxd4 5. exd4 d5 6. Qb3 {The fianchetto variation of the Panov-Botvinnik Attack in the Caro-Kann. Black usually sacrifices the pawn on d5 to activate their pieces and create pressure against White's isolated center pawns.} Bg7 7. cxd5 O-O 8. Be2 {White develops around supporting the d5-pawn, planning to maneuver the bishop to f3.} Na6 9. Bf3 Qb6 10. Nge2 Qxb3 11. axb3 Rd8 12. Ra5 Bg4 {Black trades away the light-square bishops to be able to win back the d5-pawn.} 13. Bxg4 Nxg4 14. O-O Nf6 15. Bf4 Nb4 16. d6 {A thematic move, giving back the pawn in a more favorable way than allowing ...Nxd5.} e6 {Interestingly, So decides he's in no rush to recapture the pawn and keeps his structure in tact.} 17. Rb5 Nbd5 18. Be5 b6 19. Nxd5 Nxd5 20. Nc3 Nf6 21. Ra1 Nd7 {Though Rapport's pieces are actively placed, So has defended accurately, and it's unclear how White can make progress.} 22. Ra6 Nb8 23. Ra4 Nd7 24. Ra6 Nb8 25. Ra4 Nd7 1/2-1/2 [Event "Chess.com"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2023.01.16"] [Round "3"] [White "Caruana, Fabiano"] [Black "Van Foreest, Jorden"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C42"] [WhiteElo "2766"] [BlackElo "2681"] [Annotator "rafael"] [PlyCount "91"] [EventDate "2023.??.??"] [TimeControl "6000+30"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 {The Petroff Defense seems too boring for a player with as fun a style as Van Foreest, but he has new ideas to play it more dynamically. The truth is that the old prejudices that players of my generation have against the Petroff, the Berlin, the London System, must be put aside, as the newer generation shows nearly every day. Well, maybe not in the case of the Berlin.} 3. Nxe5 d6 4. Nf3 Nxe4 5. d4 d5 6. Bd3 Be6 $5 {[%c_effect e6;square; e6;type;Interesting;persistent;true] I have to admit I've never seen this move before. In fact, it's only been played a handful of times, at least compared to the vast amount of theory that goes into the Petroff Defense. This move is only Black's tenth most popular choice. Van Foreest once again lives up to his fame as an explorer of little-known paths.} 7. O-O f5 {It's important to note that the theory in this position is composed almost exclusively of correspondence games. Of course, the pawn advance creates some weaknesses in Black's camp, and pawn structure will be the main strategic theme of this game. But the knight is reinforced in his position on e4 and he has no intention of leaving, not even if attacked.} 8. Qe2 {Played after a long thought, indicating that even Caruana can be surprised in the opening.} Be7 9. Ne5 { A natural move for a human, but a theoretical novelty, which in this case implicitly means that it is not the most recommended move by the machine.} (9. c4 c6 10. Nc3 O-O {This is a critical position and has been tested in several correspondence games.}) 9... Nd7 {The Dutch GM was clearly still in his preparation, judging by the speed with which he executed this move.} 10. Nxd7 ( 10. Bf4 {is also possible.}) 10... Qxd7 11. f3 O-O $1 {[%c_effect g8;square;g8; type;GreatFind;persistent;true] It's always a joy when we don't have to retreat a piece attacked by a pawn.} 12. Bf4 (12. fxe4 $2 {[%c_effect e4; square;e4;type;Mistake;persistent;true] Accepting the gift is a mistake.} fxe4 $1 {[%c_effect e4;square;e4;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] Black should play for an attack and not to try to win the bishop.} (12... dxe4 $2 {[%c_effect e4; square;e4;type;Mistake;persistent;true] This move is tempting, but now White achieves an advantage.} 13. Bb5 c6 (13... Qxd4+ 14. Kh1 (14. Be3 Qxb2 15. Nd2 { is also better for White.}) 14... c6 15. c3 $1 {[%c_effect c3;square;c3;type; GreatFind;persistent;true] With a material advantage.}) 14. d5 $1 {[%c_effect d5;square;d5;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] An easy move to miss. Now the bishop escapes and White is better.} Qxd5 15. Nc3 Qd4+ 16. Be3 Qb4 17. a3 $1 { [%c_effect a3;square;a3;type;GreatFind;persistent;true]} Qxb2 18. Bc4 {With a clear advantage.}) 13. Rxf8+ Rxf8 14. Bb5 $6 {[%c_effect b5;square;b5;type; Inaccuracy;persistent;true]} (14. Bxe4 {is the best defensive chance, although Black is better.} dxe4 15. Be3) 14... c6 15. Ba4 Bg4 16. Qe1 Bd6 {The attack is decisive, with ideas of …Qc7 or …Qf5-h5. Remember that to evaluate sacrifices we must understand what the pieces are doing on the board, not outside it.}) 12... Bf6 13. c3 {Finally White threatens to take the knight for real.} g5 {A double-edged pawn advance.} (13... Ng5 $6 {[%c_effect g5;square; g5;type;Inaccuracy;persistent;true] is not a good retreat.} 14. Nd2 Rae8 (14... Nf7 $2 {[%c_effect f7;square;f7;type;Mistake;persistent;true]} 15. Bxc7 $1 { [%c_effect c7;square;c7;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] wins a pawn.}) 15. Bxg5 $1 {[%c_effect g5;square;g5;type;GreatFind;persistent;true]} Bxg5 16. f4 Bf6 17. Nf3 {The knight heads to e5 and White has a clear positional advantage.}) ( 13... Nd6 {is also perfectly possible.} 14. Be5 f4 $5 {[%c_effect f4;square;f4; type;Interesting;persistent;true] Black has nothing to fear, for instance:} ( 14... Rae8 15. f4 Ne4 {is rougly equal.}) 15. Bxf4 Bxd4+ 16. cxd4 Rxf4) 14. Be5 Nd6 (14... Bxe5 {leads to a complicated game after} 15. dxe5 Nc5 16. Bc2 Qg7) 15. f4 $1 {[%c_effect f4;square;f4;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] A good move. Caruana wants to prevent Black from playing f4.} (15. Nd2 f4 $1 {[%c_effect f4; square;f4;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] This move is strategically good because it frees up the f5-square for the bishop or knight. The tactical justification can be seen after} 16. Bxf6 $6 {[%c_effect f6;square;f6;type; Inaccuracy;persistent;true]} Rxf6 17. Qe5 Qg7 $1 {[%c_effect g7;square;g7;type; GreatFind;persistent;true] defending the rook and the pawn.}) 15... g4 $2 { [%c_effect g4;square;g4;type;Mistake;persistent;true] The \"pawn advance\" theme is important in this game. Van Foreest played two dangerous but acceptable advances, taking a pawn to f5 and another to g5. This, his third, is a mistake. \"One is good, two is enough, three is too many.\" The problem is that now the capture on e5 is compromised: White recaptures with the f-pawn and a hole opens on f4.} (15... Bxe5 $1 {[%c_effect e5;square;e5;type; GreatFind;persistent;true] is the right way to keep the game balanced.} 16. fxe5 (16. dxe5 Ne4) (16. Qxe5 g4 $1 {[%c_effect g4;square;g4;type;GreatFind; persistent;true]}) 16... Ne4 {Black's pawn structure on the kingside is safe, with no clear weakness. The game is even.}) 16. Na3 Rae8 (16... Bxe5 17. fxe5 Ne4 18. Rf4 {This shows the problem with Black's 15th move. White prepares to double the rooks on the f-file and play Nc2-e3.}) 17. Nc2 {White has a comfortable advantage, precisely because Black cannot capture on e5. Without this capture there is no clear plan, while White can, among other things, play Ne3 and then h3, opening up the kingside.} Bd8 {A difficult move to make and an admission that the position is not good. Black wants to eliminate the possibility of exchanging the bishops and start his advance on the queenside, as we will see. The fact is that White's position is more comfortable, thanks to the better pawn structure. The problem with advancing pawns is this: they are the only piece in chess that cannot go back.} 18. Rad1 (18. Ne3 $1 { [%c_effect e3;square;e3;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] is more accurate, with the idea of playing h3, opening the kingside. For example:} c6 19. h3 $1 { [%c_effect h3;square;h3;type;GreatFind;persistent;true]} h5 (19... gxh3 20. Qf3 ) 20. hxg4 {Now both captures are bad for Black.} hxg4 (20... fxg4 21. Bg6 Bf7 22. Qd3 {With a strong attack.}) 21. Kf2 $1 {[%c_effect f2;square;f2;type; GreatFind;persistent;true] Followed by Rh1.}) 18... c6 19. Ne3 b5 {Probably played to avoid a plan with c3-c4.} 20. a4 (20. h3 $1 {[%c_effect h3;square;h3; type;GreatFind;persistent;true] Again this move is very unpleasant for Black.} gxh3 (20... h5 21. hxg4 hxg4 (21... fxg4 22. Bg6) 22. Kf2) 21. Qf3 $1 { [%c_effect f3;square;f3;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] With a much better position.}) 20... bxa4 21. Qc2 (21. Ra1 {is also good.}) 21... h5 22. Kh1 { A mysterious move, which I don't quite understand.} (22. Qxa4) (22. Ra1) 22... a3 $5 {[%c_effect a3;square;a3;type;Interesting;persistent;true]} 23. bxa3 Nc4 24. Bxc4 dxc4 25. Kg1 {The king goes back to g1. This move is easier to understand. Caruana is preventing the h4-h3 advance before performing any operation to capture the c4-pawn.} h4 $2 {[%c_effect h4;square;h4;type;Mistake; persistent;true] A blunder. The game is basically over after this move.} (25... Bd5 {is the best chance, although Black won't have a happy life after:} 26. Nxd5 $5 {[%c_effect d5;square;d5;type;Interesting;persistent;true]} cxd5 (26... Qxd5 {is also possible, with a similar evaluation after} 27. Rb1) 27. Rb1 { White definitely has a positional advantage, but the game is not over yet.}) 26. Nxg4 $1 {[%c_effect g4;square;g4;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] The g-pawn falls and Black's position is ruined.} Bd5 (26... fxg4 27. Qg6+ { ends in mate.}) 27. Ne3 Be4 28. Qe2 Bd3 29. Rxd3 $1 {[%c_effect d3;square;d3; type;GreatFind;persistent;true] This is a move that the World Champion Tigran Petrosian would play with his eyes closed.} (29. Qh5 $6 {[%c_effect h5;square; h5;type;Inaccuracy;persistent;true]} Qh7 30. Qxh7+ $6 {[%c_effect h7;square;h7; type;Inaccuracy;persistent;true]} Kxh7 31. Rf2 Ba5 {Black has compensation for the pawn.}) 29... cxd3 30. Qxd3 {White has a decisive advantage. He has two pawns for the exchange, but in addition, there is an immortal bishop on e5, a well-placed knight and a much superior pawn structure.} Re6 31. Rb1 (31. Nxf5 $2 {[%c_effect f5;square;f5;type;Mistake;persistent;true] It's never late to spoil a winning position.} Qh7 {The knight is lost.}) 31... Rg6 {31...Bf6 or 31...Bb6 are more stubborn.} (31... Bf6) (31... Bb6) 32. Rb8 $1 {[%c_effect b8; square;b8;type;GreatFind;persistent;true]} Qf7 33. c4 (33. Qxf5 {is easily winning after} Qxf5 34. Nxf5 Rxf5 35. Rxd8+ Rf8 36. Rxf8+ Kxf8 37. Kf2) 33... c5 {Trying to get some counterplay, but Caruana gives no chances.} 34. dxc5 Be7 35. Rb7 Qe6 36. Rc7 $1 {[%c_effect c7;square;c7;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] } Rc8 37. Rxc8+ Qxc8 38. Qd5+ Kf8 39. Bd6 {The rest is simple.} Qe6 40. Qxe6 Rxe6 41. Nxf5 Bxd6 42. cxd6 Re1+ 43. Kf2 Rc1 44. Ke3 Ke8 (44... Rxc4 45. d7) 45. Kd4 Rc2 46. c5 {The avalanche of pawns starts to advance and Black decides to resign.} (46. c5 Rxg2 47. c6 Rxh2 48. Ng7+ Kf7 49. c7 Rc2 50. d7) 1-0 [Event "?"] [Site "?"] [Date "2023.01.14"] [Round "3.3"] [White "Praggnanandhaa"] [Black "Keymer, V.."] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "E32"] [WhiteElo "2684"] [BlackElo "2696"] [Annotator "Petrisor Adrian"] [PlyCount "156"] [EventDate "2023.??.??"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 {The Nimzo-Indian Defense $1} 4. Qc2 O-O 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. Qxc3 d6 {The idea behind this move will be to break the center with e5 or c5 at the right moment.Black will develop the bishop to b7, the knight from to d7 and if necessary, the queen to e7 to prepare one of the pawn breaks. } 7. f3 {Definitely not the main line for white, but at least with a clear idea - e4 and take all the center $1} (7. Bg5 $5 {[%c_effect g5;square;g5;type; Interesting;persistent;true] The main line here for white, but black is still ok.} Nbd7 8. e3 b6 9. Bd3) 7... b6 8. e4 Bb7 $6 {[%c_effect b7;square;b7;type; Inaccuracy;persistent;true] First little strange move. To be honest, I don`t really see the reason for Bb7 now because in the near future white will have a pawn in d5, so the bishop it will be block on that diagonal.} (8... c5 $1 { [%c_effect c5;square;c5;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] Was better to play now active, as soon as possible $1} 9. d5 b5 10. dxe6 Bxe6 11. cxb5 Re8 {follow by d5 in the center with a lot of compensation for the pawn. White have 5 pieces on the first rank and the king in the center $1}) 9. Ne2 c5 $6 {[%c_effect c5; square;c5;type;Inaccuracy;persistent;true]} (9... d5 $1 {[%c_effect d5;square; d5;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] was another idea to play in the center - follow up by c5 later $1} 10. cxd5 exd5 11. e5 Nfd7 12. Ng3 c5 $13) 10. d5 exd5 11. exd5 $5 {[%c_effect d5;square;d5;type;Interesting;persistent;true] Probably White just wants to keep b7-bishop blocked there. If Black tries b5 at some point, just b3 to protect c4.} (11. cxd5 {Another possibility by white - of course and probably more precise.}) 11... Re8 (11... b5 $1 {[%c_effect b5; square;b5;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] is better and then Re8 with idea Nbd7, making play easier because White has no pawn in a4 $1}) 12. a4 {Now b5 is not so easy to realize, but still there for black $1} Nbd7 13. Kf2 {White is trying to finish development. Preparing Ng3, Bd3 / Be2 and dark squares bishop in f4 / g5 and he is with the bishop pair and more space - a clear positional advantage.} Ne5 14. Ng3 a6 15. Be2 b5 {What else $2 Trying to find some counterplay, otherwise white will continue to improve his positions gradually without any problem, but maybe it`s little bit too late - remember we have chances to play b5 - 4 / 5 moves before $1} 16. b3 $1 {[%c_effect b3; square;b3;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] I like this move $1 Keep the b7 bishop inactive, preparing also Bb2 if needed at some point and don`t allow counteplay - the most important thing $1} bxc4 17. bxc4 a5 {Preparing Ba6, so, yeah, try to do something with the bad bishop, but not so much - unfortunately with black, little bit too late.} 18. Re1 Ba6 19. Rb1 (19. Bd2 $1 {[%c_effect d2;square;d2;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] Develop the bishop with tempo there cannot be bad at all $1 For a long term prepaing f4 - deflact e5 knight and try to put pressure against a5 pawn.}) 19... Nfd7 20. Bd2 $6 {[%c_effect d2;square;d2;type;Inaccuracy;persistent;true]} (20. Kg1 $1 {[%c_effect g1; square;g1;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] Was the best here because after} Nb6 (20... Nxc4 21. Nh5 $1 {[%c_effect h5;square;h5;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] } Re5 22. f4 $16) (20... Qh4 21. Ne4 $1 {[%c_effect e4;square;e4;type; GreatFind;persistent;true] This is the trick $1 Threatening Bg5 or Nd6 or even f4 $1}) 21. Bf4 Nexc4 22. Bxc4 Nxc4 23. Nf5 Rxe1+ 24. Rxe1 Qf6 25. Qxf6 gxf6 26. Bh6 {follow up by Re4 / Re7 or even Rb1.}) 20... Qh4 {Put a lot of pressure against c4 pawn now $1 And now with the king in f2 - Ne4 is not possible anymore, unfortunately $1} 21. Rec1 Rab8 22. Rxb8 Rxb8 23. Kg1 Qd4+ 24. Qxd4 cxd4 25. f4 $1 {[%c_effect f4;square;f4;type;GreatFind;persistent; true] Exactly in time $1 Otherwise d3 was coming.} d3 $2 {[%c_effect d3;square; d3;type;Mistake;persistent;true]} (25... Ng6 $1 {[%c_effect g6;square;g6;type; GreatFind;persistent;true] Should be t he correct move, even here white have a very good positional advantage after} 26. Bf1 Rb2 27. Rd1 Nc5 28. Nf5 Nb3 29. Be1 Nxf4 30. Nxd6 $16) 26. fxe5 dxe2 27. exd6 Rc8 28. Nxe2 Rxc4 29. Rxc4 $2 { [%c_effect c4;square;c4;type;Mistake;persistent;true]} (29. Nc3 $1 {[%c_effect c3;square;c3;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] White have to keep rooks over the board to have clear chances for winning $1 White just missed this move which is winning $1 Because after} Kf8 30. Re1 Rd4 31. Re7 Bc8 32. Be3 Rd3 33. Nb5 Rxd5 34. Na7 $18) 29... Bxc4 30. Nd4 Kf8 $1 $14 {[%c_effect f8;square;f8;type; GreatFind;persistent;true] The most priceise - d5 pawn will be lost anyway, so it s time for the king $1 1 pawn down after Bxd5, but different color bishops, but white still have some hope`s because knights are over the board also $1 So, continue to try...} 31. Bxa5 Ke8 32. Bd2 Nc5 33. a5 Bxd5 34. Bb4 Na6 { Very nice this - with the idea Kd7 and then Nb8 and Nc6, trying to exchange knights and save the game $1} 35. Ba3 Kd7 36. Kf2 Nb8 $1 {[%c_effect b8;square; b8;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] with the idea to come Nc6, exchange knights and make a draw in different color bishops endgame $1} 37. Nf5 g6 38. Ne7 Bb7 39. g3 (39. g4 {was another try, but still not enought.} Nc6 40. Nd5 Nxa5 41. Nf6+ Kd8 42. Nxh7 Nc4 43. Bb4 Ne5 44. Kg3 f5 45. gxf5 gxf5) 39... Nc6 {Without knights it s easy draw, so absolutely logical $1} 40. Nd5 Nxa5 41. Nf6+ Kd8 42. Nxh7 Nc4 43. Bb4 Ne5 44. Ke3 Kd7 45. Ng5 Ba8 46. h4 Nc4+ 47. Kd4 Nxd6 48. Bxd6 Kxd6 49. Nxf7+ Ke6 50. Nh6 Bb7 51. Ke3 Ke5 52. Ng4+ Kf5 53. Nh2 Bc8 54. g4+ Kf6 55. Kf3 g5 56. h5 Kg7 57. Kg3 Kh6 58. Nf3 Be6 59. Nd4 Bd7 60. Kf3 Bc8 61. Nb5 Bb7+ 62. Kf2 Bc8 63. Kg3 Bd7 64. Nd6 Be6 65. Kf3 Bd5+ 66. Kf2 Be6 67. Kg3 Kg7 68. Nf5+ Kf6 69. Nd4 Bc8 70. Nf3 Be6 71. Nd4 Bc8 72. Nc2 Be6 73. Kf3 Bd5+ 74. Kf2 Be6 75. Kg3 Kf7 76. Ne3 Kg7 77. Kf3 Kh6 78. Ke4 Bxg4 {Draw agreed $1 Very good defence by Keymer in this endgame $1} 1/2-1/2 [Event "Chess.com"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2023.01.16"] [Round "3"] [White "Erigaisi, Arjun"] [Black "Aronian, Levon"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "E39"] [WhiteElo "2722"] [BlackElo "2735"] [Annotator "3700"] [PlyCount "122"] [EventDate "2023.??.??"] [TimeControl "6000+30"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Qc2 c5 5. dxc5 O-O 6. a3 Bxc5 7. Nf3 d5 8. Bf4 dxc4 9. e3 a6 10. Bxc4 b5 11. Be2 Nbd7 12. O-O Bb7 13. Rfd1 Rc8 14. Rd2 Qb6 15. Rad1 Rfd8 {Aronian shows the dynamic potential of the Nimzo Indian. Between his two bishops aiming down the long a8-h1 and a7-g1 diagonals, his rooks on the open files, and every piece aiming towards the center, his pieces already have more harmony than his opponents'.} 16. Qb1 h6 17. Bg3 Be7 18. Ne5 Nc5 19. Bf3 Rxd2 20. Rxd2 Nce4 21. Nxe4 Bxe4 22. Bxe4 Nxe4 23. Rd1 Nxg3 {Aronian creates two small imbalances to use: a bishop vs. a knight and doubles his opponent's pawns.} 24. hxg3 Qc7 25. Nd3 Qc2 26. Rc1 Qxb1 27. Rxb1 Rd8 28. Rd1 e5 29. f3 f5 30. Kf1 e4 31. fxe4 fxe4 32. Nf2 Rxd1+ 33. Nxd1 {With a good bishop and pawns on both sides of the board vs. a passive knight, Aronian maintains his slight edge.} Kf7 34. Nf2 Bf6 {encouraging white's queenside pawns to advance, making them more accessible targets.} 35. b3 Be7 36. a4 bxa4 37. bxa4 Ke6 $1 {[%c_effect e6;square;e6;type;GreatFind;persistent;true] With few pieces left on the board, king activity is paramount. Aronian accurately sees that the pawn sacrifice on e4 is only temporary.} 38. Nxe4 Kd5 39. Nd2 Kc5 40. Ke2 Kb4 41. Kd3 Kxa4 {Aronian his gained an outside passer, often a knight's nemesis in the ending because it can draw the knight far away from the rest of the action.} 42. Kc4 Bg5 43. Nf1 Ka5 44. e4 Kb6 45. Nh2 h5 46. Nf3 Be7 47. e5 Kc6 48. Nd4+ Kd7 49. e6+ Kc7 50. Kd5 a5 51. Nb5+ Kd8 52. Nc3 Bb4 53. Na4 Ke7 54. Nb6 Kf6 55. g4 hxg4 56. Nd7+ Ke7 ({Erigaisi and Aronian's post-game analysis focused on this line, which offered Black winning chances:} 56... Kg5 57. Nc5 {to block the bishop from guarding the e7-square to stop White's passed pawn.} Kg6 $1 {[%c_effect g6;square;g6;type;GreatFind; persistent;true] The king takes over the job of keeping watch of the e-pawn.} 58. Nd3 Bf8) 57. Nb6 Be1 58. Ke5 Bg3+ 59. Kd5 Bh4 60. Ke5 Kd8 61. Nd5 { Eigaisi's knight and e6-pawn limit the Black king's movement to any square forward. White has equalized.} a4 1/2-1/2