The upcoming world title fight between challenger Sergey Karjakin and world champion Magnus Carlsen saw the two meet at Bilbao 2016. Magnus Carlsen finished in lst with 17 points (rating 2872) versus Sergey Karjakin (rating 2743), taking 5th place with 9.
The Russians hated to lose the world chess title to anyone but another Russian. This came to an end with the victory of Robert Fischer over Boris Spassky. Russia had used the game of chess for political purposes and successful use of their training methods that produced so much talent was widely accepted as Russian domination of the sport.
White: Carlsen versus Black: Karjakin Opening: The Sicilian Defense
l. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. c3 Nf6 4. Be2 g6 5. O-O Bg7 6. Bb5+ Nc6 7. d4 Qb6 8. Ba4 c:d4 9. c:d4 O-O 10.d5 Nb8.
A good decision giving the Knight more scope via d7, eying both c5/e5 with the added comfort of possible play to the Kingside. This jump backwards merely demonstrates how square selection offers future inroads and planning.
11. Nc3 Bg4 12. h3 B:f3 13. Q:f3 Nbd7 14. Rb1 Rfc8 15. Bc2!
Aggressively relining the piece structure with thoughts toward an eventual f4 support of e5 as well as possible opening someday of the f-file. While Nimzowitsch’s comical saying to tarry is self-defeating, this plan patiently shows Carlsen willingness to bide his time without making any aimless decisions other than to quietly improve his position. An immediate angle is added defense to the R on b1. Note that White is concentrating on the light squares. Having accomplished this thought, he can now work on the dark squares!
15. … Ne5
Black’s idea is to concentrate on the one real weakness in White’s camp, being c4 where the Knight can cause time on the clock while firing up some threats.
16. Qe2 Nfd7
Carlsen recognizes that execution of planning is a two-way street. One must be prepared to face difficult positions. He now connects his Rooks and develops the Bishop using a most simplistic plan of advancing square dominance also known as my square count theory. White continues to better his own position.
17. Bg5! h6 18. Bh4
Completing development of his forces and causing Black to now have to weigh the deficit in square count. His decision to remedy this leads to weakness in his K-side. The great Emmanuel Lasker liked getting his opponent into positions that contained latent flaws not fully understanding position needs.
18 … g5 19. Bg3 Qa6 20. Qd1
Correctly avoiding the exchange offer. The doubling of pawns on the a-file would be offset by the half-open b-file showing a boost in square count for Karjakin.
20. … Rc4 21. Kh1 Rac8 22. f4! g:f4 23. B:f4 Qb6 24. Qh5! Nf6 25. Qf5 Qd8 26. Bb3 Rd4 27. B:e5! d:e5 28. Rbd1 Qd7 29. Qf3 Rb4 30. Rd2
Perhaps it finally falls on Karjakin that those White Squares are a bit more potent than the dark squares and the Rooks now began to infiltrate the K-side files. The f7 square needs protection.
30. … Rf8 31. g4! a5
Black falls back on, “It is usually best to counter on the Q-side when meeting a K-side pawn rollup.” But, in this case, it is just too slow.
32. Rg2 Nh7 33. h4 Rb6 34. g5 Kh8 35. Rfg1 f5 36. Qh3 Rb4 37. g:h6 38. Qg3 Nf6 39. Qg6 Ng4 40. R:g4 Black resigns.
The match will take place in New York City during November 2016. It is an American icon of great chess events. US chess will benefit from the exposure.