1. e4 e6 2. D4 g6 3. Nf3 Bg7 4. Nc3 Ne7 5. Be3 b6 6. Qd2 h6 7. O-O-O Bb7 8. h4 d6 9. Bd3 Nd7 10. Kb1 a6 11. Rhe1 b5 12. a3 Rc8 13. d5 e5 14. h5 g5 15. g4 c5 16. dxc6 Rxc6 17. Nh2 Nb6 18. Bxb6 Rxb6 19. Nf1 Bc6 20. Ne3 b4 21. axb4 Rxb4 22. Ncd5 Rb8 23. Nxe7 Kxe7 24. Nf5+ Kf8 25. Bc4 d5 26. Bxd5 Qb6 27. Qc3 1-0
This is a game played in November 2001 at a tournament in Germany between Magnus Carlsen, who was 11, and a player from the Czech Republic, Martin Vaculik, who was 17.
Carlsen, graded more than 100 Elo points below his opponent at the time, moved on to become a Grandmaster and then World Champion but his opponent was no slouch and became an International Chess Federation (FIDE) Master. That is, he would be playing top board at most clubs.
In this game Vaculik plays an irregular system called the Hippopotomas that invites white to gain a big space advantage and then poses the question how to use it.
White plays quietly and carefully, entombs the black squared bishop, creates an outpost on f5 and finally puts his knight there after liquidating the only piece that could have captured it.
There are no fireworks. An instructive positional game.
By Harold Biffen
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