The Russian Grandmaster Peter Svidler became the holder of the World Cup 2011. He outplayed his close friend Alexander Grischuk in the final match.
The 4th game of the match finished in a draw and the Grandmasters shared with the journalists how the game was developing.
— Our congratulations to the finalists with the end of the tournament! Peter, you enjoy the moment?
Svidler: Yes, I can say that I have crawled to the finish line tape. The choice of the opening and the way I played it do not speak well of me… The truth is that I rehabilitated myself with the move Nxe6. But again, the choice of the opening and the way I played it is the demonstration of the fact that a courage which I had before left me in this game. My hands were shaking so much that I am even ashamed for the first part of the game.
— Peter what was the most difficult moment for you during the entire tournament?
Svidler: It is difficult to choose one special Round. Despite the fact that I won most of the matched in the main games, there was not a single easy one. Well, I am thinking over it for already a minute and cannot name any game. The second game against Kamsky was very important; I remember it well for the esthetical reasons. But if this did not happen, the recollections on 2007 would have rushed into my mind with double strength (Svidler lost to Kamsky in the World Cup 2007) and it would have been hard to cope with the situation further.
— Can you state that the World Cup is the biggest sport achievement of yours?
Svidler: I think it is.
— Sasha, what kind of ideas do you have about this tournament?
Grischuk: I would like to tell you about today’s game for it turned out to be very interesting. I was very happy after the opening. But there was a decisive moment when Petya trapped me without having realized it. When I made a move 15…h6, it looked stupid and the move itself was not good. Here comes to mind 15…Nс5. Now 16.Nd2 cannot be called a move, so 16.e5 dxe5 17.Nxe5 Nxb3. It seems that Black just wins, but then go 18.Rxd8 Rxd8 19.Bxe7 Nxc1 20.Bxf6 Nxe2+ 21.Nxe2 Rd1+ 22.Kh2 gxf6 23.Qg3+ Kf8 24.Ng6+, and White wins Queen. Petya confirmed after the game that he did not see it. Otherwise after 15…Nc5 White faced serious problems. But Petya should have found this all. Then I played 18…Nh7 — I think Sergey Shipov would not approve this move (editor: indeed, Sergey Shipov proposed here 18…d5 — this move was considered in Shipov’s final report). At the end at one point I had a thought that Petya just went mad: he sacrificed a piece and later exchanged Queens. But when I realized that his pawn passes till c6, the illusion was gone.
— Sasha, how do you estimate your result? After the victory over Navara you said that it was a culmination of your career? Did you change your opinion?
Grischuk: Today it is for sure not a culmination of my career, but in general… I am rarely satisfied with the second place, but in this case I am happy. Generally I don’t play chess in summer, but the situation this summer was different: I played in China for the whole month, then Superfinals and later again one month at the World Cup. In fact I have been playing chess nonstop for the whole year.
Do you like it?
Grischuk: No, there are a lot of difficult moments. Let’s say during the match against Navara I was sleeping for three days 12−14 hours, trying to recover after the match against Potkin. The tournament was hard for me, that is why I am happy that could make it to the candidate’s matches.
— Peter, is this year a successful for you?
Svidler: During one of the rest days the local TV invited me for an interview and the first question was the following: «How did you recover after China?» This is what I can add to the question about a successful year (laughing). In fact the year was various. There were a lot of events during this time. I cannot complain for the latest month and a half, but the year in general was multifarious. So, one should not generalize.
Grischuk: I would like to add something. I had a talk with one famous chess expert (will not say who it was). After China he told me: «You and Peter are friends. Tell him to make a break, he is tired already to play chess.» Before the Superfinals he said: «How did they come to an idea to organize Superfinals right before the World Cup? I am sure you will all play badly there.»
— How do you find the organization in Khanty Mansiysk?
Svidler: No matter how many times I played in this city, I always like everything from the organizational point of view. I am not happy with my results sometimes, but there are no complains to the organizers. Now we had a very nice Playing Hall. Perhaps it was a bit stuffy when 128 players were playing, but after three days there was not a single problem: a huge hall, high ceilings, tribune for spectators. Besides the games were webcast. I have no single complain, this is a standard for my performance in Khanty Mansiysk.
Grischuk: I always come to Khanty Mansiysk with pleasure. I like it here. Even when it is 40 degrees below zero in winter or plus 20. The only moment is that by the end of the tournament when everyone left I feel a bit lonely. Perhaps the organizers should think it over and make the Governor’s Cup last three weeks!
— Peter, did you wife come to support you?
Svidler: Unfortunately not. Everyone is sick at home as usual. It is autumn.