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Efim Bogoljubov vs Alexander Alekhine
"Mind Bogoling" (game of the day Apr-26-15)
Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship Match (1929)  ·  French Defense: Classical. Burn Variation Morozevich Line (C11)  ·  1-0
To move:
Last move:

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Given 6 times; par: 102 [what's this?]

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sac: 37.Rxc7+ PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Excellent game of Bogoljubov!
Aug-01-06  suenteus po 147: <Honza Cervenka> Thanks for drawing attention to this game from the Spassky vs Karpov, 2006 page. I know I've seen the position after 45...Kc4 as an endgame puzzle before, but I can't quite remember where. Anyway, it is an excellent game by Bogoljubov :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: <I've seen the position after 45...Kc4 as an endgame puzzle before> I have seen it too and more than once I would say. It's classics. But whole game is worth to look at. Btw, especially the first Alekhine vs Bogoljubov WCh match was very entertaining event. No sterile openings with predominantly dry technical play and numerous dull and boring draws, but complex uncompromising fight with 16 decided games of 25. Alekhine prevailed quite clearly with 11 wins but Bogo managed to win 5 games (more than Capa did) and sometimes like here or in Bogoljubov vs Alekhine, 1929 he simply swept Alekhine down of the board.:-)
Premium Chessgames Member
  fm avari viraf: Bogo conducted the game so well giving no chance to Alekhine till the very end. A beautiful game by Bogo.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Knight13: It's just what happens when you got pawns too far down and so in the endgame you get nailed because your army's too far away.
Jun-22-09  donehung: For a long time i was under the impression "bogo" was cannon fodder for AA but after going over this game i am very impressed with his play.
Jul-24-09  KnightFortress: Got this one. At first, I thought the right move was 37.♘c5, before seeing the superior 37.♖xc7!
Jul-24-09  Shyfe: I got this one really quickly. 37.Rxc7+ Qxc7 38.Nc5+ jumped out at me and then 38...Kb8 loses to 39.Nb6+ so 38...Kb6 39.Qxc7+ Kxc7 40.Nxe6+ K-move 41. Nxd8 Kxd8 and white is easily winning. The endgame should be no trouble at all. That combination was easy to spot if you considered the most forcing moves.
Jul-24-09  Hongkonger: Either I just got very lucky, or that was easy for a Friday. Rxc7+ leading to a winning endgame.
Premium Chessgames Member
  dzechiel: White to move (37?). Material even. "Difficult."

OK, if I was white and playing Alekhine in this position I would play this very forcing line:

37 Rxc7+

Takes the bishop off of the board. Black has only one reasonable reply:

37...Qxc7 38 Nc5+

The king has to move as the black queen is pinned.


Not 38...Kb8? 39 Na6+ picking up the whole queen.

39 Qxc7+ Kxc7 40 Nxe6+ Kd7 41 Nxd8 Kxd8

Leaving white with an extra pawn (that is connected and passed) and a won endgame.

For those of you unfamiliar with the technique, the white king will head towards the isolated g-pawn...

42 Kc2

and should black try to defend it, the b-pawn will start running up the board.

I'm sure the game ended before this point, but I'm interested to see exactly when.


Bogo chooses different technique. I will yield to his expertise.

Jul-24-09  crwynn: running after the g-pawn doesn't seem to work, because Black just heads for a2 and both players queen. The combination was easy but I thought there was no need to analyze the K&P, I didn't see any of that.
Jul-24-09  EngageEight: spotted the entire line up until 42.b4 and stopped cause a promotion cant be stopped. great game by bogo
Jul-24-09  openingspecialist: Nice puzzle. I suspect that this one was slightly easy for a Friday.
Jul-24-09  newzild: 37.Rxc7+ Qxc7 38.Nc5+ K any 39.Qxc7+ Kxc7 40.Nxe6+ K any 41.Nxd8 Kxd8 and white has a winning K+P ending, eg. 41.Kc2 Kc7 42.b4 and black's a-pawn is toast.

Only 55 seconds today - much faster than yesterday. I think most people would find this easier.

<dzechiel>, I think you overlooked the line where black races white: 41.Kc2 Kc7 42.Kd3 Kc6 43.Ke3 Kb5 44.Kf4 Kb4 45.Kxg4 Kc3 46.h4 Kb2 47.h5 Kxa2 48.h6 Kxb3 49.h7 a2 50.h8=Q a1=Q which looks like a draw.

Premium Chessgames Member
  TheBish: Bogoljubov vs Alekhine, 1929

White to play (37.?) "Difficult"

This is the easiest "difficult" problem I've seen in a long time. I've seen a few "medium" problems that were harder, but I'm not complaining. In this case, the forcing line is the best.

37. Rxc7+! Qxc7 38. Nc5+ Kb6 (or Kb8) 39. Qxc7+ Kxc7 40. Nxe6+ Kd7 41. Nxd8 Kxd8 42. Kc2, and White is a pawn up in a simple endgame, about to win the a-pawn after 43. b4 and 44. Kb3.

There are a few ways to win the endgame, either win the a-pawn, or shepherd the b-pawn and/or win the d-pawn and queen the d-pawn, but NOT marching all the way over the win the g-pawn, because by the time White does that, Black will come down to win White's a-pawn and queen his own a-pawn about the time White is queening the h-pawn. (Must count moves and squares!) The simple win is to win the a-pawn, and then push both queenside pawns. The exception to this is, if Black's king marches over to win the h-pawn (with designs on queening his own g-pawn), White will simply push the b-pawn through to queen, and prevent Black from queening his pawn. Once Black's king is outside the "square" (you should know this term to understand simple endgames) then the b-pawn can't be stopped; the alternative is that White king and in this case a-pawn can aid in pushing a pawn through to queen.

Jul-24-09  Terry McCracken: Pretty straight foward.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Well the puzzle itself is not too tricky. White wins with forcing moves starting with 37. Rxc7+.

But this is trappy week, so the next bit of fun is to spot the plausible moves that don't quite work. And one trap is 37. Nc5+

click for larger view

What could be more logical than this? White advances his knight to a protected outpost with check, and attacks the e6 pawn for a second time.

The problem is 37. Nc5+ Qxc5! 38. dxc5 Rxd7 39.c6+ Kc8 40. cxd7+ Kxd7

click for larger view

White has won the exchange but black's connected passed pawns are dangerous. Fritzie calls it as +0.94, which is a much smaller advantage than the game continuation.

Jul-24-09  akapovsky: What made today's puzzle easy was the fact that there wasn't to many moves to analyse Rxc7 is the only combination in sight and it converts the position into a winning endgame for white.
Jul-24-09  nuwanda:

for me too dont know why this puzzle is rated difficult... with a pretty obvious uncomplicated little combo white liquidates to an elemantary one-pawn-up pawn ending.

i think white made his own life a little harder with 42.b4 instead of 42.Kc2, allowing black a little counterplay (45...Kc4). after 42.Kc2 Kd7 he has 43.Kc3. if black now stays on the queenside, white has the route Kb4, Kxa3, if he goes to the kingside then b4


Premium Chessgames Member
  TheBish: White also wins with 46. Ka4 (instead of 46. b5 in the game) Kxd4 47. b5 Kc5 48. Ka5 d4 49. b6 Kc6 (or 49...d3 50. b7 d2 51. b8=Q d1=Q 52. Qc7+ Kd4 53. Kd6+ Ke3 54. Qxd1) 50. Ka6 d3 51. b7 d2 (or 51...Kc7 52. Ka7 d2 53. b8=Q+ Kd7 54. Qb5+ Ke6 55. Qd3 and wins) 52. b8=Q d1=Q 53. Qc8+ Kd5 54. Qd7+ followed by 55. Qxd1.
Jul-24-09  mccarthpm: what about Q takes pawn-does this led to a won end game??
Jul-24-09  Peter Nemenyi: The main difficulty here is just convincing oneself that a line leading to a quiet endgame win can be the solution to a Chessgames puzzle which seems to contain more dramatic possibilities.
Jul-24-09  gofer: Hmmm... not sure if I like this one... I can see an immediate win for white that is forced, I saw this in about 5 seconds, but its moving into a won endgame with a single pawn advantage. Its definitely a won end game but it not exactly spectacular...

37 Rxc7+ Qxc7
38 Nc5+ Kb6 (not Kb8 losing immediately)
39 Qxc7 Kxc7
40 Nxe6+ Kc8/Kd7
41 Nxd8 Kxd8

now its not spectacular, but OTB I would take this in a heartbeat.

I will go and get a cup of coffee, put the pieces on the board and see if I can find something better and make another post later...

...I am just "chicken" after Tuesday's horrendous experience...


Jul-24-09  gofer: Okay, so lets look at the other possiblities...

37 Nc5 Qxc5 wins for black ...

37 Qxe5 Qxe6
38 Nxc5+ Kb6 (not Kc6 or Kc8)
39 Nxe6 Rh8
40 Nxc7 Rxh2
41 Nxd5+ seems to win for white but the problem is that black doesn't have to play 37 ... Qxe6 black has lots of options...

37 ... Qxd4 (which loses for black)
37 ... Qd6 (which probably loses for black)
37 ... Rd6 (which probably loses for black)

But nothing is really forcing...

so I can't see anything better than my original post...

Time to check...

Jul-24-09  zooter: 37.Nc5+ and now

a) 37...Kb8 38.Na6+ Qxa6 39.Qxc7+ wins

b) 37...Ka7/Ka8 seems to hold for black.

So, let's go back to the drawing board.

How about 37.Rxc7+ Qxc7 38.Nc5+


a) 38...Kb8 39.Na6+
b) 38...Kb6 39.Qxc7+ Kxc7 40.Nxe6+ Kd7 41.Nxd8 Kxd8 42.Kc2 and white should win since the b passed pawn and black's f-pawn is in danger...

This should be a won endgame with good technique

Time to check

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