Top players don’t normally make mistakes but, instead, play perfectly. Their moves can be characterized by precise calculation. But, in some cases, they do make TERRIBLE blunders.
They are playing for a lot of money or even for the World Championship trophy. For that reason, their expressions are exaggerated.
(1) Aronian, Levon (2786) – Nakamura, Hikaru (2790) [E15]
Candidates Tournament, 17.03.2016
Nakamura, with the Black pieces, has a difficult position. He has to react to White’s threats because the position is forced. White has pinned the f7-pawn and is threatening to play e6. In this particular position, Nakamura touches his king, which is a very big mistake. After the moves 74…Kf8 75.Kf6 Ra6+ 76.Rd6, Black’s position is totally lost: 1-0.
(2) Xiong, Jeffery (2618) – Kamsky, Gata (2678) [B03]
US Chess Championships, St Louis (5), 18.04.2016
Each side’s position has its pros and cons, and things are about equal. In this position, Gata makes a terrible blunder 35… Bxf3. After this move and the forcing continuation 36.Bxf3 Qxf3, Black’s position is hopeless. White can capture the knight on e3, using the pin on the d-file. The game ends after the moves 37.Rexe3 dxe3 38.Qb2+ 1-0.
(3) Kasparov, Garry (2812) – So, Wesley (2773) [B40]
Ultimate Blitz Challenge, 28.04.2016
White has a fantastic position because he controls the center; his pieces are on dominant squares, and the passed b-pawn is very strong. Black is threatening to capture this pawn with one of his two rooks; therefore, White should protect this pawn with the move knight to c4. Unfortunately, in this position, Kasparov pushes the b-pawn forward and leaves the knight on d6 unprotected. So captures it and wins the game instantly: 0-1.
(4) Carlsen, Magnus (2850) – Grischuk, Alexander (2774) [A48]
World Blitz, 14.10.2015
At first glance, it may seem counterintuitive but White has s difficult position. He has an extra pawn on the queenside but Black’s pieces are extremely active. In this position, White should capture the e7-pawn but Carlsen he doesn’t do that. He was very upset with himself after the game: 0-1
(5) Anand, Viswanathan (2750) – Kasparov, Garry (2785) [B90]
Geneve PCA-GP Credit Suisse Geneve (4.4), 01.09.1996
This position is really great for Black. The center is the most important part of the board: if you can strengthen your control over central squares, this will always be good for you. Black is controlling the center very well and has active pieces. Similarly, he has two extra pawns. Black can simply castle and should win the game after some technical moves. Unfortunately for Kasparov, he captures the bishop on e3. He has overlooked White’s reply, which is to capture the pawn on g4. After this move, the White queen is attacking the rook on c8 and the bishop on g7. White has a winning position and wins the game in the end: 1-0.