Position after 9….Nd5

GM V. Kramnik – Deep Fritz (C) [E03]
Kramnik – Deep Fritz Bonn, Germany, 11.29.2006

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3 d5 4.Bg2 dxc4 5.Qa4+ Nbd7 6.Qxc4 a6 7.Qc2 c5 8.Nf3 b6 9.Ne5 Nd5 10.Nc3 Bb7 11.Nxd5 Bxd5 12.Bxd5 exd5 (This is so far a good start for Kramnik in this game. This is a position where he can play for 2 results without much risks. Kramnik is amazing with his opening choices as he often gets good positions to squeeze his opponents.)

13.0-0 Nxe5 14.dxe5 Qc8 15.Rd1 Qe6 (White is a little better here for several reasons: 1) White is more developed and already castled 2) White’s pieces are more coordinated 3) Black may potentially have a problem defending the Queenside pawn structure 4) Black’s Bishop has little mobility. Again, this is the perfect type of position that Kramnik wants to have against Deep Fritz.)

16.Qd3 (Now I expect Fritz to play 16…Be7. If 17.Qxd5 then 17…Rd8 18.Qb3 Rxd1+ 19.Qxd1 +=)

16…Be7 (Just as expected)

17.Qxd5 Rd8 18.Qb3 Rxd1+ 19.Qxd1 0-0 20.Qb3 c4 21.Qc3 f6 22.b3 Rc8 (Even though Black is down a pawn, Fritz has some compensation for it.)

23.Bb2 b5 24.Qe3 fxe5 25.bxc4 Rxc4 26.Bxe5 (It would be interesting to see how Fritz will defend this position. White is of course better because White is a pawn up. However, the Black Rook is much more active and therefore Black has adequate compensation for the pawn.)

26…h6 27.Rd1 Rc2 (Black’s active Rook is helping Fritz out a great deal. This is an important lesson for endgame play. Keep your pieces as active as possible!)

28.Qb3 Qxb3 29.axb3 Rxe2 30.Bd6 (This is heading for a draw but I like Black a little better due to the smaller majority on the Queenside.)

30…Bf6 31.Bc5 (I continue to like Black better. Kramnik has to work to draw this game.)

31…a5 32.Bd4 Be7 (I am very impressed with the computer’s ability to understand not to trade the Bishop. Once the Bishops are off the board, the game would be a much easier draw for Kramnik.)

33.Bc3 (I am excited to see the computer taking Kramnik head on in an endgame. The computer has done well so far.)

33…a4 34.bxa4 bxa4 35.Rd7 Bf8 36.Rd8 (This is one of those very difficult endgames to win as Black but it is also very frustrating to defend as White.)

36…Kf7 37.Ra8 (If 37…a3 38.Rxf8+ Kxf8 39.Bb4+ then 40.Bxa3 and White should be able to hold for a draw.)

37…a3 (A computer moment! Fritz does not understand that this will lead to an immediate draw.)

38.Rxf8+! (A human moment! Kramnik clearly understands that he has secured a draw with this sacrifice.)

38… Kxf8 39.Bb4+ (This is one of those positions where Fritz does not understand very well. Kramnik should have no problem holding this position to a draw now. If Fritz wanted to win, it cannot allow this sacrifice. Just about anything else would have been better.)

39…Kf7 40.Bxa3 (This game is done. This is basically a drawn endgame. Fritz made an endgame mistake of counting materials instead of understanding the position. The rest of the game is very uninteresting as Fritz will only keep on making moves without understanding that the position has little play.)

40…Ra2 41.Bc5 g6 42.h4 Kf6 43.Be3 h5 44.Kg2 1/2
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