Evgeny Bareev once more dismissed all concern for political correctness in his account of the Russian men’s teams’ wins against Italy and Peru. He focussed on how Alexander Grischuk snatched victory from the jaws of defeat, but also found time to make a perhaps overly sweeping generalisation about the Peruvian nation.
Bareev was again talking to Yury Vasiliev of Sport Express. The game discussed here is given at the bottom of this report:
If this game hadn’t been played by Grischuk, but by someone else, we’d simply have lost it, and the match would have ended up a draw. But as it was Grischuk playing this most difficult of positions, there was still some hope of a successful outcome right up until the last moment. Alexander is a good practical player and plays excellently in time trouble – he’s resourceful. And ultimately he wasn’t the one who lost his way in time trouble, but his opponent – out of an excess of tempting continuations, each of which, it seemed, should have brought success. Grischuk could have forced a draw, but instead of that he played for a win – and won, while after the game he solemnly informed me that I wouldn’t have any easy days at this tournament.
If Sasha keeps to his word then you’ll need Validol. But Grischuk, by the way, offered his opponent a draw, but was refused…
Sasha offered a draw when he had an extra pawn and his king wasn’t yet under a mating attack. But the situation in the match was such that if Grischuk drew we would win, so the captain of the Italian team went over to his protégé and, bringing an end to peace talks, very strictly said: “Play!” And so he deprived Vocaturo of the tempting possibility of making a draw with our outstanding grandmaster, the winner of Linares, an Olympic Champion and a World Blitz Champion.
Grischuk isn’t winning on account of his class, but on account of his outstanding gaming qualities…
But isn’t that class? The ability to defend a dangerous position, to find chances and to win a game despite it looking impossible. That’s what Grischuk’s doing. And it’s genuine class.
And how does our second team look, to you?
They played the Peruvian peasants and achieved the desired result without particular trouble. They only conceded half a point on the first board.
“Peruvian peasants”, a nice image…
As far as I know, having flown above Peru, the majority of inhabitants are involved in farming. And moreover, Peru’s first board – Julio Granda, left chess for a while and became a farmer. And then he returned to chess. So I supposed that the Peruvian team might be peasants, or the children of peasants. Their play, by the way, was a little gutless.
Do you manage to follow our main rivals?
To be honest our rivals don’t particularly bother me, as I’m mainly interested in the play of our sportsmen. I want to see who I’ll be working with in the coming years in the post of head trainer. I want to follow them all in action, to understand how the grandmasters conduct themselves under conditions of maximum stress.
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