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After 23. Bb2


about his chances even here—“After 24. h5 I didn’t like my position. White will first attack, then exchange queens, then bam!—Bxd5, and he’s got an endgame an Exchange up.” Gelfand, however, dis- agreed. “I’m not even sure if White would have been better or not—it’s a very com- plex position.”


24. Qe2! “A very strong move, after which


absolutely everything in my position is dis- organized, and my king is weak,” said Grischuk. “On 24. e4 Bxb3 and then ... Na5 and ... Bc4 with completely unclear play.”


24. ... Rh5 The rook must stay on the fifth rank to


prevent 25. d5. 25. e4! Again caring little about material—


White’s central pawns simply roll to victory. 25. ... Bxb3 26. Rdc1! Na5 “It is a little embarrassing that I offered


a draw [around here],” said Grischuk. “I thought it was just unclear but apparently the position was just lost.”


27. d5 b6 28. Be5! c5 28. ... Rd7 29. Qb5! threatens both the


b3-bishop and the b6-pawn.


29. dxc6 e.p. f6 30. Ba1 Rc5 31. Rxc5 bxc5 32. Qb5 Qc7 Short of time, Grischuk collapses


quickly, although after 32. ... Ba2! 33. Rb2 Qc7! 34. e5! White will stay at least a pawn up with a winning position.


33. Rxb3 Nxc6 34. e5 Nd4 35. Qc4+, Black resigned.


“The level of play by White was so high


that I’d have had to play phenomenally not to lose this game,” said a clearly impressed Grischuk. “And it’s never easy to play phenomenally.”


Gelfand was able to celebrate in style—


friends had bought him tickets to the Champions League Final at Wembley and a few days later he was able to watch his beloved Barcelona FC defeat Man-


uschess.org


You have to understand, life is about more than chess. Mr. Fischer was my idol for a long time, and I was impressed by his approach to life, but after all, there are a lot of other interesting things I want to do…


Chess Life — August 2011 21


PHOTO BY BETSY DYNAKO


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