Walter's Walk - 2011 World Chess Championship Candidates Matches
2011 World Chess Championship Candidates Matches|
For the record I like:
Kramnik > Radjabov
Aronian > Grischuk
Topalov > Kamsky
Gelfand > Mamedjarov
in the quarters:
Kramnik > Aronian
Topalov > Gelfand
and then Kramnik over Topalov in the final. (Dear God, please don't let the reverse happen!) Of course, Topalov already said he wouldn't play a Russian on Russian soil, but fuck him. He didn't have any problem playing a World Championship Match in Bulgaria. Fucking pussy and a crybaby.
Lines are posted here:
World Championship Candidate Matches: Who Will Advance?
Thu 5/5 Boris Gelfand vs Shakhriyar Mamedyarov
101 Boris Gelfand (ISR) 1.800
102 Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (AZE) 2.150
Thu 5/5 Levon Aronian vs Alexander Grischuk
103 Levon Aronian (ARM) 1.476
104 Alexander Grischuk (RUS) 2.920
Thu 5/5 Veselin Topalov vs Gata Kamsky
105 Veselin Topalov (BUL) 1.388
106 Gata Kamsky (USA) 3.350
Thu 5/5 Vladimir Kramnik vs Teimour Radjabov
107 Vladimir Kramnik (RUS) 1.442
108 Teimour Radjabov (AZE) 3.060
Well, looks like I like I picked all favorites. WRT the money lines, the one thing I'm sure of is there is no way I would lay so much on Topalov. He may be the "#1 seed," but he is at best the third best player there. His form is a complete unknown, whereas Kamsky is coming off a recent victory in the US championship, and seems to be playing with confidence. Kamsky outplayed him a couple years ago, but just had godawful trouble with the clock. Topalov is the better fighter, but Kamsky knows more about the game. Topalov reminds me of athletes who have one outstanding attribute, but when it withers, they go downhill quick, e.g. Shawn Kemp and his springy calves. Kamsky has the kind of game that could see him play at a high level for a very long time. So by no means is Topalov such a fave.
Gelfand over Mamedjarov is the closest, but it seems like Mamedjarov's visit to the top 10 has come from playing in less than elite events, whereas Gelfand has battled at the highest levels for twenty years. It seems odd that Kramnik and Aronian (the two best players here, clearly) have almost the same lines. Grischuk in his stride has a very good style for combating Aronian, whereas Kramink and Radjabov are just in two different classes.
Going just by the money lines, I like Kramnik and Kamsky.
My understanding is that over-the-board ability is only part of the formula. Having a good team and a good plan for preparation is also important, which requires financial support. I wonder how the candidates compare along that component.
That Russian weblink is all Greek to me. In any case, I think Kramnik can be beaten in this cycle. His age (only 35, but for chess considered beyond his prime) and health issues (chronic arthritis) could wear him down in longer matches. IMHO, Aronian is playing the best chess in the world right now, and at age 28 is considered to be at the peak of his career. So I look for Aronian to take out Kramnik and possibly even Topalov in the Final. By the way, count me in as one of those who would not be shocked if Kamsky beat Topalov in Rd 1.