[Event "FIDE World Championship 2021"] [Site "Dubai"] [Date "2021.11.26"] [Round "1.1"] [White "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"] [Black "Carlsen, Magnus"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "C88"] [WhiteElo "2782"] [BlackElo "2855"] [Annotator "Europe-Echecs"] [PlyCount "89"] [EventDate "2021.11.25"] [EventType "match"] [EventCountry "UAE"] [SourceTitle "europe-echecs.com"] [Source "ChessBase"] [SourceQuality "1"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 O-O 8. h3 $5 (8. c3 d5 $5 {aurait mené au gambit Marshall.}) 8... Na5 $5 (8... Bb7 9. d3 d5 (9... Na5 10. Nxe5 Nxb3 {1-0 (61) Bellegotti,G (2415)-Sychov,A (2196) ICCF email 2016}) 10. exd5 Nxd5 11. Nxe5 Nxe5 12. Rxe5 Qd6 13. Re1 Rae8 14. Nd2 c5 15. Ne4 Qc6 16. c4 Nb6 17. cxb5 axb5 18. Qf3 c4 19. Bc2 (19. dxc4 bxc4 20. Bc2 f5 21. Nc3 Qxf3 22. gxf3 Bxf3 23. Bf4 {1/2 (44)-1/2 (44) Svidler,P (2749) -Muzychuk,A (2580) Caleta 2012}) 19... Qd7 20. Qg3 f5 21. Ng5 Nd5 22. dxc4 Bd6 23. f4 Rxe1+ 24. Qxe1 Re8 25. Qh4 Nf6 26. Qf2 Qc7 27. b4 Bxb4 28. Bb2 Bc5 29. Bd4 Bxd4 30. Qxd4 h6 31. Nf3 Bxf3 32. gxf3 bxc4 {0-1 (59) Kovalev,V (2661) -Esipenko,A (2611) Poikovsky 2019}) 9. Nxe5 Nxb3 10. axb3 Bb7 11. d3 d5 12. exd5 Qxd5 13. Qf3 Bd6 14. Kf1 $1 (14. Qxd5 Nxd5 15. Bd2 f6 16. Nf3 Ne7 17. Nd4 c5 18. Ne2 Ng6 19. Nbc3 f5 20. Kf1 {1-0 (42) Korneev,O (2638)-Nataf,I (2592) Evora 2006}) 14... Rfb8 $5 15. Qxd5 Nxd5 {[%csl Yb2,Yb3,Gb5,Yc2,Yd3][%CAl Yc7c5] Les Noirs ont sacrifié leur pion e5 dans le style du gambit Marshall. Ici, le point important est de se rendre compte que le pion blanc de plus est sur l'aile-Dame et qu'il sera très difficile de le valoriser de ce côté.} 16. Bd2 c5 17. Nf3 {16 minutes de réflexion.} (17. Nc3 Nb4 18. Rac1 f6 (18... Rd8 19. Ng4 f5 20. Ne5 Rac8 21. Re2 Re8 22. Nf3 Rf8 23. Re6 Rfd8 24. Bg5 Kf7 25. Re3 Re8 {1-0 (61) Bellegotti,G (2415)-Sychov,A (2196) ICCF email 2016}) 19. Nf3 Re8 20. Rxe8+ Rxe8 21. Ne2 Nc6 22. Bf4 Bxf4 23. Nxf4 Kf7 24. Re1 {1-0 (52) Schreuders,A-Neale,M (2260) ICCF email 2018}) 17... Rd8 $5 {21 minutes de réflexion.} 18. Nc3 Nb4 19. Rec1 Rac8 20. Ne2 Nc6 21. Be3 Ne7 22. Bf4 $6 Bxf3 23. gxf3 Bxf4 24. Nxf4 {[%csl Yb2,Yb3,Yf2,Yf3,Yh3]} Rc6 {[%csl Ga6,Gc6][%CAl Yc6h6]} 25. Re1 Nf5 26. c3 {Après seulement 19 secondes !} Nh4 27. Re3 $5 Kf8 $5 (27... g6 28. Ng2 $6 Nf5 $17) 28. Ng2 Nf5 {[%csl Yg2]} 29. Re5 g6 30. Ne1 ( 30. Ke2 $5 {[%csl Gb3,Gc3,Gd3][%CAl Ye2d2,Yd2c2]}) 30... Ng7 31. Re4 $5 f5 32. Re3 Ne6 33. Ng2 b4 $1 34. Ke2 Rb8 35. Kd2 bxc3+ 36. bxc3 Rxb3 37. Kc2 Rb7 38. h4 Kf7 (38... Rcb6 $5) 39. Ree1 Kf6 40. Ne3 Rd7 {[%csl Ya6,Yc5,Yf2,Yf3,Yh4]} 41. Nc4 {[%csl Yc6,Yd7][%CAl Yc4e5,Ye5d7,Ye5c6]} Re7 42. Ne5 Rd6 43. Nc4 Rc6 44. Ne5 Rd6 45. Nc4 1/2-1/2 [Event "FIDE World Championship 2021"] [Site "Dubai, United Arab Emirates"] [Date "2021.11.25"] [Round "1.1"] [White "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"] [Black "Carlsen, Magnus"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "C88"] [WhiteElo "2782"] [BlackElo "2855"] [Annotator "Sagar Shah"] [PlyCount "89"] [EventDate "2021.??.??"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 O-O 8. h3 $5 {The main move in this position is c3, but Nepo went for the 2nd most popular move. It is also called the Anti-Marshall.} (8. c3 d5 9. exd5 Nxd5 10. Nxe5 Nxe5 11. Rxe5 c6) 8... Na5 $5 {Now this comes as a huge surprise. This has only been played in 35 games before.} (8... Bb7) (8... d6) 9. Nxe5 Nxb3 10. axb3 Bb7 11. d3 d5 $5 12. exd5 Qxd5 13. Qf3 Bd6 (13... Rab8 14. Qxd5 Nxd5 ( 14... Bxd5 15. Rxa6) 15. Nd7) 14. Kf1 $5 {There have been two games that have continued with Kf1 in this position.} (14. Nc3 Qxe5 15. Qxb7 Qxe1#) (14. Bd2 Qxe5 15. Qxb7 Qh2+ 16. Kf1 Rfe8) 14... Rfb8 {Now a massive threat is to take on e5 with the queen. So White is forced to trade the queens.} (14... Qxe5 15. Qxb7 $14) 15. Qxd5 Nxd5 (15... Bxd5 16. Nc3 $16) 16. Bd2 {Ian took five minutes for this move so clearly he was in his preparation.} c5 17. Nf3 { A solid 16 minute think.} (17. Nc3 Nb4 18. Rac1 Rd8 19. Ng4) 17... Rd8 { Magnus was out of his preparation and took 21 minutes for this move.} 18. Nc3 { This position looks slightly more pleasant for White as Black has to fight hard to prove his compensation for the pawn.} Nb4 {Rook a1 to c1 looks natural in this position, but Nepo decided to play his other rook.} 19. Rec1 Rac8 20. Ne2 {White is not really threatening to take the knight on b4, he is preparing Ne1 with the idea of c3.} Nc6 (20... Be7 21. Ne1 Bf6 22. Bc3 $14) 21. Be3 Ne7 22. Bf4 $6 {This proved to be dubious move by Nepo as now Magnus liquidated into an endgame which looks quite easy for Black to play.} (22. Nd2 $14) (22. Ng3 $14) 22... Bxf3 23. gxf3 Bxf4 24. Nxf4 Rc6 $1 {A very nice move which protects the pawn on a6 and also prepares to swing over the rook to f6 or h6 on the third rank.} 25. Re1 Nf5 26. c3 Nh4 27. Re3 Kf8 28. Ng2 Nf5 29. Re5 g6 30. Ne1 (30. Ke2 $5 Ng7) 30... Ng7 31. Re4 f5 32. Re3 Ne6 {Magnus has brought his knight to an excellent square from where it puts pressure on both d4 and f4. The next step is to create an outpost on d4.} 33. Ng2 b4 $1 34. Ke2 Rb8 35. Kd2 $1 {Nepo takes a good decision of giving up a pawn in order to gain some activity and coordination.} (35. Rb1 a5 $1 $15 {With a lot of pressure on White.}) 35... bxc3+ 36. bxc3 Rxb3 37. Kc2 Rb7 38. h4 {Just taking the g5 square under control.} Kf7 39. Ree1 Kf6 40. Ne3 Rd7 {40 moves have been completed and both players get an extra hour on their clocks. The position is round about even.} 41. Nc4 Re7 42. Ne5 Rd6 43. Nc4 Rc6 44. Ne5 Rd6 45. Nc4 1/2-1/2 [Event "?"] [Site "?"] [Date "2021.11.26"] [Round "1"] [White "Nepomniachtchi, Ian"] [Black "Carlsen, Magnus"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "C88"] [WhiteElo "2782"] [BlackElo "2855"] [Annotator "samsh"] [PlyCount "89"] [EventDate "2021.??.??"] 1. e4 {Greetings everyone! This is Sam Shankland, and I will be with Chess.com throughout the duration of the World Championship match, annotating each and every game. I was on Magnus Carlsen's team in the past, helping him prepare for his second match with Anand and his match with Karjakin, but this time around I have no role on any side whatsoever, which means I can speak entirely freely as a complete spectator. The first game was an interesting affair, where both sides have things to be satisfied with and not satisfied with. In general, modern World Championship matches almost always start with two draws. When you are playing White and you don't know what is coming and Black gets to play his World Championship preparation for the first time, he almost always equalizes easily. Then, once games three and four come, the players tend to be able to put more pressure. This match has been different, as I don't believe Magnus fully equalized in game one. While this may be surprising and a bad sign for his preparation, it has to be said that before long, he was the only one who could think about winning. That has to speak in Magnus' favor and not be a confidence booster for Nepo. Without further ado, on to the game!} e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 {Magnus chooses the classical Spanish, much like he did against Karjakin. In both of his last two matches, he stuck with the same black repertoire vs 1.e4 all the way through. Based on how today went, and that the match is a little longer, I suspect he may deviate later on.} 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 O-O 8. h3 {All of this has been seen before many times, and now Magnus is the first to play a somewhat unusual move.} Na5 $5 {This move is not too common, for obvious reasons. Black goes down a pawn but quickly forces through ...d5 and hopes his activity and bishop pair will be enough for it. The main moves are ...d6 and ...Bb7.} (8... d6) (8... Bb7) 9. Nxe5 {Now play takes on a very forcing character.} Nxb3 10. axb3 Bb7 11. d3 d5 12. exd5 Qxd5 13. Qf3 {This position had only seen play in four human games in the past, with White winning all four. But, it has been a much hotter topic in correspondence chess.} Bd6 14. Kf1 {Nepo blitzed this move out, he was surely still in preparation. We have now left human practice.} Rfb8 $1 {An important move. Black overprotects the bishop on b7, so now he is threatening to move his queen. White is forced to capture.} 15. Qxd5 (15. Nc3 $2 Qxe5 $1 {Since the bishop on b7 is defended, Black wins material, and the game.}) 15... Nxd5 { This position has been seen eight times in correspondence chess, with White winning four of the eight games. That is actually a huge winning percentage in a computer vs computer world where nearly every game is drawn, and it really speaks volumes as to how difficult Black's defense might be. It's a bit surprising to me that Magnus would voluntarily force this position straight out of the opening, but he may be more confident in Black's holding chances than I am.} 16. Bd2 {Stopping ...Nb4.} c5 17. Nf3 Rd8 {The first entirely unseen move of the game.} (17... Nb4 {This was the final correspondence game in the line. White eventually won. I suspect Magnus was in preparation up to this point and decided to play Rd8 instead.}) 18. Nc3 Nb4 19. Rec1 {The machines are definitely giving White a slight edge here. Still, it's so hard to turn something like this into a win. He is a pawn up and very solid, but it will be a nightmare to untangle his pieces. His rooks are stuck, the pawn structure is not great, Black has more space, a pair of bishops... still, a pawn is a pawn and Black has no direct threats. It takes a lot to play this position well with Black.} Rac8 20. Ne2 Nc6 {Now, if the timestamps are correct, Nepo spent two minutes on Bd2-e3, and then two minutes again on Be3-f4. Why not go there directly?} 21. Be3 (21. Bf4 $1 {This looked like a much better option to me. White will bully the d6-bishop back to f8 without allowing his kingside structure to get shattered. After} Bf8 22. Ne1 $1 { White has everything protected, and he is ready for c2-c3 next to dominate the c6-knight. He looks pleasantly better to me, though it will take a lot of work to actually win the game.}) 21... Ne7 $1 {Magnus sends the knight towards the f5- and d5-squares, where it will harass the e3-bishop.} 22. Bf4 $2 {This comes a move too late. Black will get a lot of play against the kingside pawns. } (22. Ne1 {Again, I'd like this move, but it seems like a tempo down compared to what it could have been. After} Nf5 {Black has quite a bit more compensation than he did before. It's very close to equal.}) 22... Bxf3 $1 23. gxf3 Bxf4 24. Nxf4 Rc6 {Around here, I was thinking that Nepo was really starting to lose the thread and that his position was getting dangerous. I was not running serious machinery at the time, and now that I am, it is telling me that the game was absolutely equal from here on out. Still, in human terms, I have to believe Black is more comfortable here. It feels like it will take a million years to set the queenside majority in motion, and White is one bad move away from his kingside collapsing.} 25. Re1 Nf5 26. c3 Nh4 27. Re3 Kf8 ( 27... g6 {The machines suggest this is best, as prophylaxis against Ng2. Still, I find it unimpressive. After} 28. Ke2 {White has all of his pawns well defended, and it is hard to believe he can be worse.}) 28. Ng2 Nf5 29. Re5 g6 30. Ne1 $2 {I think the biggest edge Magnus has over Nepo as a player is that his intuition for where the pieces belong in quiet positions tends to be better. White only spent a minute on this move, but it really strikes me as not best.} (30. Ke2 $1 {Why not centralize the king and get ready for Ne3 next? Black might even be a little worse.}) 30... Ng7 $1 {This move pair on move 30 is a perfect illustration. Ng7 strikes me as a very difficult move. The knight reroutes to e6, which is indeed a better square. It frees Black to advance his f-pawn to f5 and put his king on f6. It makes sense, but who looks at the previous position and thinks \"My knight on f5 is misplaced, let's move it back to g7?\" This is the kind of thing Magnus is much better than absolutely everyone at. If he can get more of these kinds of positions, I suspect he will have good chances in some of them.} 31. Re4 f5 32. Re3 Ne6 33. Ng2 b4 $1 {I like this move a lot as well. If for no other reason, it gives me a chance to plug my book! In Small Steps to Giant Improvement, I wrote that if you have doubled pawns and the forward doubled pawn cannot be defended by another pawn, it often will become a serious weakness. This is the case here with the b3-pawn. Black is aiming to open the b-file, and touching the c-pawn would allow Black's knight to d4. Still, it should not be enough to win the game. White is a pawn up and well within the drawing margin.} 34. Ke2 $1 { I like Nepo's choice to give the pawn back and activate his king.} Rb8 35. Kd2 $1 (35. Rb1 $2 {Keeping the pawn is too greedy. After} a5 $1 {Black is ready for some combination of ...bxc3, ...Rcb6, and ...a5-a4. The b3-pawn will drop anyway, and White is only losing time.}) 35... bxc3+ 36. bxc3 Rxb3 37. Kc2 Rb7 38. h4 {Now material has been equalized, and White is ready to bring his knight to e3 and c4. Black's isolated queenside pawns are just as weak as White's isolated kingside pawns, and the position is balanced.} Kf7 39. Ree1 Kf6 40. Ne3 Rd7 41. Nc4 Re7 42. Ne5 Rd6 43. Nc4 Rc6 44. Ne5 Rd6 45. Nc4 { There were not too many surprises in how game one played out. Magnus got the kind of position where I think he is most able to show why he is the better player, and he did play a better game once the players were on their own. That said, it is not all roses for the World Champion. I think it is a very bad sign for his preparation that he failed to equalize in his first black game. This is something that should be almost gauranteed. If Nepo can get more edges with white in the opening, and perhaps in more dynamic positions that suit his style better, I think he will get some very real chances. I think game two will be very important. I suspect Nepo will equalize easily and make a draw without any particular trouble. We certainly cannot draw any real conclusions this early, but if this happens, I would definitely start to worry if I was in charge of Magnus' preparation.} 1/2-1/2