Etienne Bacrot played the best chess of the championship, in my opinion. Here is his game against GM Edouard, where he demonstrates his ability to play sharp and uncompromising chess when the position demands it.
POSITION AFTER 17 MOVES:
A classical Queens Gambit Accepted (QGA) opening has lead to a sharp position where White has quickly mobilized his pieces while Black has been doing the same behind White’s isolated Q-Pawn. Black’s last move (17…h6 ?!) , however, is a bit unconventional–not to say provocative — and leads to an immediate crisis in the centre. Bacrot lashes out:
The opening of the Black King position is well worth the cost of the Bishop. Moreover, subsequent analysis has shown that White is not in anyway risking anything.
One straight forward way for White to proceed is 19. d5! Nbxd5 ( Inferior are both 19… ed 20. Nxd7 Qxd7 21. Qxe7 and 19… Rxc3 20. Nxd7 Nbxd7 21. bc) 20. Bxd5 Nxd5 21. Nxd5 ed 22. Rxd5 recovering the material with advantage.
Bacrot has another idea:
This move envisages a possible direct attack against he Black King (Rg3), while maintaining the d5-pawn break in the air. Play proceeded:
19… Kh8?! 20. Qd2 Ng8 21. d5!
The pile-up on the d-line guarantees White to win back some material in the near future
21… Nc4 22. Bxc4 bc 23. Rd4
And now for the decisive error. Admittedly, Black’s position is not easy to defend
23… Bc5?? 24. de! Bxd4 25. Qxd4
The threat of the discovered check along the long diagonal is something that does Black in
25… Qf6 26. ed Rcd8 27. Re3 Ne7 28. Rf3 Nc6
Desperate, but there is nothing better.
29. Nxf7-ch! Black resigns. He loses the house.
It has to be admitted that the time control (40 moves in 1hour,30 minutes; followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game–plus 30 seconds per move from move 1 onwards) does not allow for demonstrating brilliant endgame technique, but still it is hard to believe that an experienced Grandmaster like Dorfman could lose the position below!