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Stratagem Wins
Compiled by sevenseaman
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Those games where the eventual winner, at times, comes under early pressure but is clever enough to escape via improvisation or some psychological ruse.

Opponent too can make a mistake
Ivkov vs Portisch, 1961 
(C18) French, Winawer, 31 moves, 1-0

If you have two, give away one
Tal vs Simagin, 1956 
(B06) Robatsch, 45 moves, 1-0

Packing a punch
Pachman vs Eckert, 1940 
(C13) French, 24 moves, 1-0

No escape, Houdini
Ehlvest vs Kasparov, 1988 
(A28) English, 25 moves, 0-1

Toppled - Kasparov immortal
Kasparov vs Topalov, 1999 
(B06) Robatsch, 44 moves, 1-0

Modern Masters are cleverer
Kasparov vs Tal, 1987 
(E48) Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3 O-O 5.Bd3 d5, 31 moves, 1-0

Class apart
Karpov vs Kasparov, 1985 
(B84) Sicilian, Scheveningen, 42 moves, 0-1

Squeezed into submission by mere mosquitoes!
V Malinin vs A Andreev, 1989 
(A58) Benko Gambit, 32 moves, 1-0

Where eagles dare!
V Malinin vs V Savinov, 1988 
(A58) Benko Gambit, 36 moves, 1-0

A rabbit out of a hat
Topalov vs Shirov, 1998 
(D85) Grunfeld, 53 moves, 0-1

Brokering the pawns in an end game
Gligoric vs Stein, 1962 
(E70) King's Indian, 57 moves, 0-1

SuperShirov
Kramnik vs Shirov, 1994 
(D02) Queen's Pawn Game, 43 moves, 0-1

Did you like the tie pin?
Timman vs Kasparov, 1985 
(C93) Ruy Lopez, Closed, Smyslov Defense, 41 moves, 1-0

The rookster
Keres vs D Byrne, 1972 
(D94) Grunfeld, 33 moves, 1-0

Confetti and buntings all the way!
Euwe vs Alekhine, 1935 
(D81) Grunfeld, Russian Variation, 45 moves, 1-0

Cute finish
Van der Wiel vs Short, 1985 
(C42) Petrov Defense, 34 moves, 1-0

Walking into a known trap
Capablanca vs M Fonaroff, 1918 
(C62) Ruy Lopez, Old Steinitz Defense, 22 moves, 1-0

Guts on the line
A Ostapenko vs S Kurkin, 1970 
(B82) Sicilian, Scheveningen, 30 moves, 1-0

A missed opportunity and the shark's jaws closed.
A Shashin vs Korchnoi, 1973 
(E56) Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3, Main line with 7...Nc6, 35 moves, 1-0

A smooth crossing of the river
V Ruban vs A Poluljahov, 1994 
(E94) King's Indian, Orthodox, 28 moves, 1-0

Come and be my guest
J Cukierman vs Tartakower, 1930 
(A47) Queen's Indian, 25 moves, 1-0

The way the cookie crumbles
J Cukierman vs Koltanowski, 1929 
(C41) Philidor Defense, 32 moves, 1-0

A new variety of the smother mate.
P Moran Santamaria vs E Franco Raymundo, 1955 
(B64) Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer Attack, 24 moves, 1-0

A fudged Machiavelli? No a genuine one.
J Cukierman vs A Voisin, 1929 
(D02) Queen's Pawn Game, 31 moves, 1-0

An untouchable Q and an expedient
Reshevsky vs Fischer, 1970 
(A32) English, Symmetrical Variation, 30 moves, 0-1

Some of the cleanest germs live in soapcakes!
A Steinkuehler vs Blackburne, 1863  
(C54) Giuoco Piano, 22 moves, 0-1

Thinking of a sac, do it at the right time.
Gheorghiu vs Kavalek, 1969 
(E83) King's Indian, Samisch, 25 moves, 0-1

Two attacking and defending Bishops.
Svidler vs Adams, 2000 
(C78) Ruy Lopez, 34 moves, 1-0

Power display
J Rosanes vs Anderssen, 1862 
(C31) King's Gambit Declined, Falkbeer Counter Gambit, 19 moves, 0-1

Marshall was in a class of his own.
Marshall vs Bogoljubov, 1924 
(A46) Queen's Pawn Game, 38 moves, 1-0

Only Pawns morphose into Queens
Lilienthal vs Ragozin, 1935 
(E24) Nimzo-Indian, Samisch, 47 moves, 0-1

The Morphyne Injection!
Anderssen vs M Lange, 1859 
(C39) King's Gambit Accepted, 30 moves, 1-0

Ephemera, but they keep coming!
F Erkel vs Szen, 1845 
(C51) Evans Gambit, 33 moves, 1-0

Q is no more needed. R will mate.
Gunsberg vs Janowski, 1902 
(C77) Ruy Lopez, 29 moves, 0-1

If Q leaves the board, better
C Lutz vs Ftacnik, 2001 
(B90) Sicilian, Najdorf, 35 moves, 1-0

You take the Q , as I take the game anyways
M Lowcki vs Tartakower, 1937 
(C41) Philidor Defense, 39 moves, 0-1

Zugzwang, une apocalypse
Alekhine vs Nimzowitsch, 1930 
(C17) French, Winawer, Advance, 30 moves, 1-0

How to deflect an attack and gobble up the attacker
J Mason vs Winawer, 1882 
(C50) Giuoco Piano, 56 moves, 1-0

Judith, where didya meet Morphy
Judit Polgar vs P Chilingirova, 1988 
(B31) Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation, 17 moves, 1-0

Go the whole hog, not just the Q
Reti vs Tartakower, 1910 
(B15) Caro-Kann, 11 moves, 1-0

Invest well in time for a good return
Kramnik vs Kasparov, 2001 
(D37) Queen's Gambit Declined, 36 moves, 1-0

A good Benoni here.
Spassky vs Fischer, 1972 
(A61) Benoni, 41 moves, 0-1

Insulates all except the Bishop at f1.
A Riazantsev vs Carlsen, 2005 
(E12) Queen's Indian, 36 moves, 0-1

You do not always know the end is so near
Larsen vs Spassky, 1981 
(A26) English, 44 moves, 0-1

A tough balancing act with scope to slip
Z Almasi vs Lahno, 2006 
(E63) King's Indian, Fianchetto, Panno Variation, 37 moves, 1-0

...32. Ng4 can neither be swallowed nor spat out
G Wood vs Najdorf, 1946 
(D45) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 32 moves, 0-1

A Benoni to savour!
Gligoric vs Kavalek, 1972 
(A77) Benoni, Classical, 9...Re8, 10.Nd2, 38 moves, 1-0

Some finishes really finish you
B Lengyel vs V Mikhalevski, 1993 
(C82) Ruy Lopez, Open, 22 moves, 0-1

Which came first, the egg or the chicken
O Field vs O Tenner, 1923 
(C58) Two Knights, 18 moves, 0-1

Its the Masters that produce works of art
G Andruet vs Spassky, 1988 
(E11) Bogo-Indian Defense, 28 moves, 0-1

The win wasn't visible till 28. Q g7
Capablanca vs T A Carter, 1909 
(C30) King's Gambit Declined, 30 moves, 1-0

On a clear day you can see for ever.
L B Hansen vs Timman, 1994 
(E34) Nimzo-Indian, Classical, Noa Variation, 34 moves, 1-0

A smother mate in the air can take your breath away!
Kramnik vs Kasparov, 2000 
(E53) Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3, 25 moves, 1-0

A polished Kolisch
Shumov vs Kolisch, 1862 
(C50) Giuoco Piano, 24 moves, 0-1

Putting a wild beast into the cage
M Kuerschner vs Tarrasch, 1891 
(C64) Ruy Lopez, Classical, 23 moves, 0-1

Attack very often is a matter of outnumbering.
J Mason vs Gunsberg, 1889 
(C50) Giuoco Piano, 29 moves, 0-1

The Q in a bunker, like Saddam.
Hromadka vs Tarrasch, 1922 
(B41) Sicilian, Kan, 27 moves, 1-0

is brutally minded.
Botvinnik vs Portisch, 1968 
(A22) English, 26 moves, 1-0

Meet the ambidexterous!
Lindehn vs Maczuski, 1863 
(C21) Center Game, 16 moves, 1-0

For a Mate-in-two, threaten Mate-in-one
D Waterman vs R Samo, 1974 
(C65) Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense, 17 moves, 1-0

The 'Man can' mate.
F Manca vs F Braga, 1992 
(C41) Philidor Defense, 20 moves, 1-0

24. Ba2 prudence pays, 24. Qg6 is hasty.
Reti vs Spielmann, 1928 
(D51) Queen's Gambit Declined, 31 moves, 1-0

In a traffic jam, even vertical is an option.
Colle vs V Soultanbeieff, 1930 
(D05) Queen's Pawn Game, 20 moves, 1-0

Brinkmanship is as punishable as insouciance.
Guimard vs Euwe, 1946 
(A49) King's Indian, Fianchetto without c4, 35 moves, 0-1

Smyslov poses a last move teaser.
Smyslov vs Denker, 1946 
(B24) Sicilian, Closed, 52 moves, 1-0

Motoring down a mountain road!
Browne vs L Christiansen, 1977 
(A10) English, 38 moves, 1-0

A brilliancy, but Ian Rogers will not dig it.
Kasparov vs P Nikolic, 1992 
(D10) Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, 37 moves, 1-0

Jockeyed out!
I Rogers vs G Milos, 1992 
(A46) Queen's Pawn Game, 32 moves, 1-0

Let sleeping dogs sleep
J E Slade vs NN, 1960 
(B58) Sicilian, 22 moves, 1-0

The R sacrifice is a booby-trap.
Leko vs Bacrot, 2009 
(E15) Queen's Indian, 39 moves, 1-0

A quintessential attack
B Ivanovic vs G Ginsburg, 2003 
(B95) Sicilian, Najdorf, 6...e6, 33 moves, 1-0

26. Bd5 kills two birds with one stone.
Euwe vs G A Thomas, 1934 
(D69) Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox Defense, Classical, 13.de, 26 moves, 1-0

Its never too late to sac!
Keres vs Petrosian, 1959 
(B39) Sicilian, Accelerated Fianchetto, Breyer Variation, 51 moves, 0-1

A clever Webb saw more than most will do here.
Richard Webb vs J Zeberski, 2004 
(C67) Ruy Lopez, 27 moves, 1-0

Only chess manages to combine beauty with brains.
D Kontic vs G M Todorovic, 1992 
(B35) Sicilian, Accelerated Fianchetto, Modern Variation with Bc4, 32 moves, 1-0

Who ever won just by castling!
Kasparov vs Ivanchuk, 1995  
(C16) French, Winawer, 31 moves, 0-1

Sniping at a siiting duck is a lot easier!
P Patankar vs A Deshpande, 2008 
(C45) Scotch Game, 18 moves, 1-0

Too big a lag in development can embarrass.
Svidler vs Bareev, 2004 
(C10) French, 17 moves, 1-0

A quick mating expedient found by Shirov.
Shirov vs T Thorhallsson, 1992 
(D45) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 38 moves, 1-0

14. Bxb7! Kramnik takes Vishy for a ride here.
Kramnik vs Anand, 2007 
(A15) English, 21 moves, 1-0

A bright star of the chess firmament.
Gelfand vs Shirov, 2007 
(D85) Grunfeld, 54 moves, 0-1

Overworked defenders watch helplessly!
A Korotylev vs Mamedyarov, 2007 
(B06) Robatsch, 30 moves, 0-1

Hang on with your nails even as they break.
E Inarkiev vs M Kazhgaleyev, 2008 
(C72) Ruy Lopez, Modern Steinitz Defense, 5.O-O, 50 moves, 1-0

A fish out of water.
Fischer vs C Munoz, 1960 
(B77) Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack, 36 moves, 0-1

Cornered!
J C Sadorra vs D K Dunn, 2011 
(D85) Grunfeld, 28 moves, 1-0

Q is just a chessman!
Gelfand vs Jobava, 2011 
(A70) Benoni, Classical with 7.Nf3, 29 moves, 1-0

Piece sac, a rampaging Q, sees Ps promote & win.
Aronian vs Svidler, 2011 
(D82) Grunfeld, 4.Bf4, 54 moves, 1-0

Capa used the Alekhine idea 10 years later.
Alekhine vs Koehnlein, 1908 
(D05) Queen's Pawn Game, 17 moves, 1-0

Miles only inches away!
Miles vs Beliavsky, 1986 
(E12) Queen's Indian, 29 moves, 1-0

White never stops posing the problem.
Kotronias vs Z Kozul, 2005 
(B32) Sicilian, 29 moves, 1-0

Keep your oppnent under the hammer.
Kotronias vs D King, 1990 
(B12) Caro-Kann Defense, 26 moves, 1-0

The main problem comes after the solution.
Kotronias vs Grigoriants, 2009 
(B43) Sicilian, Kan, 5.Nc3, 28 moves, 1-0

Tidy work, White keeps a cool nerve.
A Artidiello vs D Freeman, 2001 
(D10) Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, 23 moves, 1-0

Mastery by Euwe
L Stumpers vs Euwe, 1946 
(E60) King's Indian Defense, 30 moves, 0-1

94 games

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