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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) what's your take on carlsen in bilbao? (Read 14751 times)
brabo
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #28 - 10/17/12 at 13:05:04
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MartinC wrote on 10/17/12 at 12:15:48:
The biggest issue is that club level doesn't even reach the 'first' stage of anyone getting blown apart by home preparation. Not remotely often anyway.

In consequence there's rather little motivation to actively move around. In practice if you did I don't think you'd have many genuine problems.

The discussion is about what it takes to be really considered as a leader in innovation, bringing something new to the game. 99,9% of the players are followers as in other domains. I am pretty sure that today you can apply Morphys approach to chess and still become a strong player. It is even a well known rule that one should first learn from the old masters before moving forward to more sophisticated approaches. So my statements have indeed little to no relevance to clubplay.
  
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #27 - 10/17/12 at 12:49:58
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tony37 wrote on 10/17/12 at 12:01:04:
I think the basic element of Carlsen's play is variety (in opening choices), if he would choose the same variations all the time, people would definitely be able to play 'powerplay'/home preparation against him, so a very broad opening knowledge is necessary to play like this, which I think is just unattainable for most players.

Variety sure but not everything works. You still need to make the right choices. I last read the following quote from Giri on http://schaaksite.nl/page.php?al=waaraan-had-ik-in-hemelsnaam-mijn-uitnodiging-t...
I translate to English: "The clever Norwegian found again a way to avoid easily the theory and we arrived quickly on unknown territory." I interpret this as Giri admires the way how Carlsen every time succeeds in finding new fertile grounds bringing his opponents out of their comfortzone. This requires a special skill which goes beyond just variating openings.
  
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #26 - 10/17/12 at 12:15:48
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The biggest issue is that club level doesn't even reach the 'first' stage of anyone getting blown apart by home preparation. Not remotely often anyway.

In consequence there's rather little motivation to actively move around. In practice if you did I don't think you'd have many genuine problems.
  
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #25 - 10/17/12 at 12:01:04
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I think the basic element of Carlsen's play is variety (in opening choices), if he would choose the same variations all the time, people would definitely be able to play 'powerplay'/home preparation against him, so a very broad opening knowledge is necessary to play like this, which I think is just unattainable for most players.
  
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brabo
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #24 - 10/17/12 at 09:16:36
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Ametanoitos wrote on 10/17/12 at 08:01:42:
First of all (something that i have never stated before and i feel that i should do): Brabo, congratulations for your truly excellent blog. I know lots of people who would really like to see it in English (Google Translation sucks!).

I published in less than 9 months around 70 often lengthly articles (I realise that I won't be able to keep up this speed.) Translating all this to English will be a painstaking job while I am not sure if there is really interest in it as often the topics are starting from local scenes to discuss more general aspects.

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I am not sure if we disagree.

It is very difficult to express in a few lines a good balanced view of a certain topic. This is also the reason why often my blogarticles are lenghty and even then I often receive wrong interpretations of readers.

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What i said and probably passed unnoticed, is that Carlsen (according to his coach's book "Wonderkid") was raised by studying EVERYTHING! Really, there was not a single book (and opening book ones) that Carlsen didn't read and practicaly memorised (in this book there are many anecdotical stories about Carlsen's memory). So, Carlsen HAS a huge opening knowledge.

I fully agree with this. It is well known that it is very difficult/ impossible to become a master without a solid base. I remember an exception on this rule : the Peruvian GM Julio Grand Zuniga. The story says that he just came out of his apple tree orchard and became GM. Only after becoming GM, he started to study openings but nobody can of course fully confirm this story.
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Maybe not in the sense of knowing the most recent novelties like Aronian and Kramnik for example, but a wide general opening knowledge. This fact doesn't contradict your opinion about his approach to chess, but it puts it in a different level. Carlsen doesn't play like this because he doesn't know theory or because he is bored to work on openings (althought this may be true!), but because he can has a broad knowledge of opening and stored patterns and has chosen to avoid sharp theoretical lines.

For me this clever selection of lines, using his broad knowledge of opening and stored patterns is the new element in chess. It is still not (fully) understood today how Carlsen does it and how his system works against all this super prepared heavy theory. I tried to give a very superficial view of this system in my above mentioned articles but I certainly don't claim that I understood it fully.
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But Karpov did the same, didn't he? He didn't really seecked opening advantage but rather a "Karpovian"-like position he would outplay his opponents from it. So, Carlsen's approach isn't new. Yes, it is true that today's Carlsen is probably somewhat stronger than the prime years of Karpov (although someone would like to see more evidence to be convinced and make such comparisons), so your argument "nobody managed to achieve his level before with the way he approaches chess" is correct in my opinion, but what i said is that this is not a new approach to chess.

There are certainly some resemblances between Karpov and Carlsen but there are also big differences.
1) Karpov played during quite long periods of time with a fixed frame of openings. I see Carlsen change very frequently of openings in very short periods of time.
2) Karpov had to face weaker opponents and weaker advanced theory which required less sophisticated approaches.
3) Karpov also studied often very deeply openings,  also coming up with its own strong novelties as was clearly shown in part 2 and 3 of Modern Chess by Kasparov. Afterall Karpov was still a child of Botvinniks school and indoctrinated that one has to work hard on openings.

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Before Karpov, Capa had the same attitude. You can state a lot of differences between those 3 players (Capa, Tolya and Magnus), but the aproach was the same.

Capa is even going further back in time. An approach can only work if you successfully adapt yourself to the circumstances, the opponents. Today we are playing a completely different game of which only the basic rules have stayed the same. Calrsen can't be the number one if he would use the same approach as his ancestors. You see the same in real life. An approach can work for some time but then things (in the beginning not noticeable) start to change and suddenly you are not leading anymore.

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I am not saying this because "i am an author of opening books and i want my books to sell", but as a conclusion, i don't want a new chessplayer to understand this wrongly such as this: "Magnus doesn't put emphasis on openings in his play, so i'll too not study openings" because this is not what happened with Magnus! Magnus, on the contrary, had just the healthy aproach. Study openings (and quite deeply) but only as a fraction of the study you should do as a chessplayer.

Today books like yours at least bring the impression that knowing the latest status of the theory gives you a guaranteed advantage on the board. I am also a follower of this system (I call this the powerplay system). However nowadays I see a very quiet shift to something new. There is no real name for it although I once heard from Anand something like the 'hit and run' system. I've not seen any books explaining this new system yet although i see more and more strong players using something similar. I believe this is still virgin territory for the general public.
  
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Ametanoitos
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #23 - 10/17/12 at 08:01:42
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First of all (something that i have never stated before and i feel that i should do): Brabo, congratulations for your truly excellent blog. I know lots of people who would really like to see it in English (Google Translation sucks!).

I am not sure if we disagree. What i said and probably passed unnoticed, is that Carlsen (according to his coach's book "Wonderkid") was raised by studying EVERYTHING! Really, there was not a single book (and opening book ones) that Carlsen didn't read and practicaly memorised (in this book there are many anecdotical stories about Carlsen's memory). So, Carlsen HAS a huge opening knowledge. Maybe not in the sense of knowing the most recent novelties like Aronian and Kramnik for example, but a wide general opening knowledge. This fact doesn't contradict your opinion about his approach to chess, but it puts it in a different level. Carlsen doesn't play like this because he doesn't know theory or because he is bored to work on openings (althought this may be true!), but because he can has a broad knowledge of opening and stored patterns and has chosen to avoid sharp theoretical lines.

But Karpov did the same, didn't he? He didn't really seecked opening advantage but rather a "Karpovian"-like position he would outplay his opponents from it. So, Carlsen's approach isn't new. Yes, it is true that today's Carlsen is probably somewhat stronger than the prime years of Karpov (although someone would like to see more evidence to be convinced and make such comparisons), so your argument "nobody managed to achieve his level before with the way he approaches chess" is correct in my opinion, but what i said is that this is not a new approach to chess. Before Karpov, Capa had the same attitude. You can state a lot of differences between those 3 players (Capa, Tolya and Magnus), but the aproach was the same.

I am not saying this because "i am an author of opening books and i want my books to sell", but as a conclusion, i don't want a new chessplayer to understand this wrongly such as this: "Magnus doesn't put emphasis on openings in his play, so i'll too not study openings" because this is not what happened with Magnus! Magnus, on the contrary, had just the healthy aproach. Study openings (and quite deeply) but only as a fraction of the study you should do as a chessplayer.
  
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brabo
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #22 - 10/17/12 at 07:34:51
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Ametanoitos wrote on 10/16/12 at 17:31:41:
Carlsen hasn't done something like this untill now. What we have seen is an incredible practical ability with deep active positional understanding....which is not new! Carlsen steps so far to the shoulders of the chess giants of past. Future is ahead for him, but in order to become a true world champion he has to show more on another level! And i am sure that he'll do... Wink

I don't agree with this statement. I believe what Carlsen today shows is new as nobody managed to achieve his level before with the way he approaches chess. I believe he simply isn't understood correctly as his play is too advanced for us. He is already influencing other topplayers. One recent example: http://schaken-brabo.blogspot.be/2012/09/schots-vierpaardenspel.html (Dutch) . I am pretty sure Kramnik would've never played this opening without Carlsens influence.

You and me, we are raised up with the traditional chessvalues mainly introduced by Botvinnik. We have learned that studying openings is a necessary element of becoming a master. As author from openingsbooks you surely will advocate this theory otherwise you won't sell much. However Carlsen proves today time after time that chess can be played differently. I more or less explain this in my article http://schaken-brabo.blogspot.be/2012/07/tanguy-ringoir-is-belgisch-kampioen.htm... (Dutch)
  
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #21 - 10/16/12 at 17:31:41
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Greeks work much more than all Europeans, it is a fact. I see people that work from 15 to 70 here. We are chessplayers (thus thinkers) and getting fed up by what mass media like us to feed with is not something i'd expect. Today there is a big discussion in Greece about the new cuts. Finally we started saying "no". On the other hand it is not nice mocking a nation (any nation, i am not talking only about Greece which should deserve respect for what has done about our civilation) as it is not nice mocking a world champion that is the oldest one since Botvinnik. On the other hand we (chessplayers) have also developed a curious sense of humour, so to be honest i kind of smilled with the joke about Greece and Anand!  Grin

In general Carlsen and Anand are way different as players. Calrsen, from very young, combined as a player the deep classical education with enormous chess talent. Anand has an amazing talent but only after being a respectfull GM worked significantly on his education and technique. Anand, as every world champion till today, has marked chess with a personal addition to our game's heritage. The way the Sicilian is played for White today for example has been influenced greatly by Anand. The "re-birth" of the modern Semi-Slav is also another thing that comes to mind. Carlsen hasn't done something like this untill now. What we have seen is an incredible practical ability with deep active positional understanding....which is not new! Carlsen steps so far to the shoulders of the chess giants of past. Future is ahead for him, but in order to become a true world champion he has to show more on another level! And i am sure that he'll do... Wink
  
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #20 - 10/16/12 at 16:24:09
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Well, Carlsen vs. Anand was a fantastic game, Carlsen again playing for a congenial type of game, not an opening advantage, then making it look simple. Fascinating how Carlsen and Topalov, both of whom work heavily with computers, have more or less opposite relationships to the beast in their choice of opening lines and playing style. Not to speak of the actual generation of moves during play (Cf. my earlier post in this thread on computers and the evolution of chess.)
  
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #19 - 10/16/12 at 16:19:44
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If my good Greek friend, Nikos, is any indication, he works around the clock with very little sleep (writing, analyzing, coaching, etc.), his retirement (whenever he finally chooses to take it) will be well deserved!

Back on topic, I think it is marvelous to see Carlsen taking this approach and being successful.  It only adds to the richness and diversity of the game we love.

Bill
  
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #18 - 10/16/12 at 13:54:33
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In 2010 Anand defended his title against Topalov successfully. During the press conference Anand mentioned, that every championship makes him ten years older, so he was asked, if he retires, because virtuelly he would be 70. Anand replied with a smile: "Am I greek?"
  

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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #17 - 10/16/12 at 10:29:33
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chk wrote on 10/15/12 at 16:25:21:
gewgaw wrote on 10/13/12 at 19:36:23:
Anand is no greek, but he should retire from professional chess...etc.

Can you please elaborate on that?

A Greek

P.S.: Some respect for Anand wouldn't harm either..


It´s probably a play on the idea that greeks retire at 40, and well, I´m sure you know the rest.
  
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #16 - 10/15/12 at 16:25:21
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gewgaw wrote on 10/13/12 at 19:36:23:
Anand is no greek, but he should retire from professional chess...etc.

Can you please elaborate on that?

A Greek

P.S.: Some respect for Anand wouldn't harm either..
  

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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #15 - 10/13/12 at 20:54:33
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a nice last game, maybe Caruana isn't used to playing the hedgehog, a6 was completely unnecesary in that position since there is no knight on c3, Qc7 was necessary since an unprotected bishop on b7 is playing with fire

edit: but there was a knight on d4, now I at least understand why he played a6, so he probably should have played Qc8 (or better: waiting with Nbd7, and play a6+Qc7 first)

but, just from my general understanding of the hedgehog, I don't think it was a good idea to play a hedgehog to start with since white has played e4 without problems, in the comparable English position he has to play Re1 etc
(but I'm quite sure Caruana wouldn't have messed up like this if this was the first round)
  
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Re: what's your take on carlsen in bilbao?
Reply #14 - 10/13/12 at 19:36:23
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Congrats to "The Power" Magnus for an other fine tournament victory!

http://www.chessdom.com/final-masters-sao-paulo-bilbao-2012-live/

new live rating: 2847,6
http://www.2700chess.com/

Anand is no greek, but he should retire from professional chess like Garri did, when he felt he was his zenith.
  

The older, the better - over 2200 and still rising.
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