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|Jun-22-03|| ||sangfroid: or... After 20. Rd1, 20... Nf6 21. Bh7+ Nxh7 then white has to move its queen, becuase then black threatens Nxa4, then Bb5, screwing the queen and rook... heh, that sounds kind of funny, Black threatens to screw the queen. Hard har har... ;\ ok never mind |
|Jun-25-03|| ||sangfroid: I did overlook 19... Rd7 though... lol |
|Jun-26-03|| ||euripides: 19...Rd7 20 Bc5 threatening b4 winning the queen and so winning a tempo to take the knight. |
|Apr-22-04|| ||TrueFiendish: I remember this one. This was Bled, where Alekhine was at the height of his powers. There was much analysis done and Alekhine concluded that 21...Rad8 was no good and black had to play ...f5 instead. However, upon investigation Vukovic concluded that f5 was no good, Rad8 was strong and black actually went wrong right at the end with 27...Rxd3. He felt the fairly obvious 27...Rc6! would have saved black and he gave a drawing line: 28.Rxc6 bxc6 29.fxe6 fxe6 30.Nf6! Bf7 31.Nxd7 Rxd7 32.Qf6+ Kd6! 33.Bxa6! Qb6+ 33.Rf2 Qxa6 34.Rd2+ Kc7 35.Rxd7+ Kxd7 36.Qxf7+ Kd6 draw. I think that's how it went. I tried to improve on his line and found lots of promising moves, but they all melted away... |
|Apr-23-04|| ||WMD: <If 25...Rxb4 instead of ...Qxb4, I guess Alekhine intended 26.Qd2 temporarily employing a pin and aiming to get closer to Maroczy's king by way of h6.> According to Alekhine, he was intending 26.Qh5! (threat f6, winning the Qa5). He gave the winning line as 26...e5 27.f6+ Kd8 Qxh6 Rxd3 29.Qf8 Rd7 30.Rc5 Qxa4 31.Rxe5. As Kasparov points out in My Great Predecessors, "Alas, after 31...Kc7! there is no trace of a win: 32.Qc5+ Kb8 33.Rxe8+ Ka7 34.Qe5 a5 or 32.Qxe8 Qc2 33.Nf8 Rb2 34.Rg5 Rd1 35.Qe5+ Kc6 equalising. It would appear that slightly more is more by 26.fxe6!?, but then it is not clear for what the b-pawn was given up." |
|Apr-23-04|| ||WMD: <There was much analysis done and Alekhine concluded that 21...Rad8 was no good and black had to play ...f5 instead. However, upon investigation Vukovic concluded that f5 was no good, Rad8 was strong and black actually went wrong right at the end with 27...Rxd3.>|
John Nunn, editor of Alexander Alekhine's Best Games (Batsford), has a different version of events. In a footnote to one of Alekhine's moves analysing 21...f5, Nunn writes, "Rather amusingly, Vukovic, in his book The Chess Sacrifice, gave analysis showing that White could play more strongly here by 22.Nxh6+; in case readers are baffled by this suggestion, I should add that Vukovic incorrectly gave White's 18th move as Ne4 instead of Ng4."
|Apr-23-04|| ||WMD: Vukovic and Kasparov both give 27...Rc6 as Black's best move, superior to the 27...Qb6 recommended by Alekhine in My Best Games 1924-1937. What's curious is that Alekhine himself favoured Rc6 when he'd annotated the game for the publication Denken und Raten in 1931, as reproduced in Skinner & Verhoeven. |
|Apr-27-04|| ||TrueFiendish: WMD: this is a curious set of circumstances indeed. I can imagine Vukovic at his board working through numerous intriguing variations of an impossible move. I thought something was fishy here and that perhaps the database was wrong, but indeed it was not! |
|Jun-12-04|| ||beatgiant: In Kasparov's line mentioned by WMD above, after 31...Kc7!, I agree that White does not have any quick mate, but he can still play to win the f-pawn with Qxe8 followed by Re7.|
For example, 31...Kc7; 32. Qxe8 Nc4; 33. Re7 Nd6; 34. Rc1+, and it appears to me that White will win the f-pawn and have good chances of winning the game.
|Jun-12-04|| ||acirce: <For example, 31...Kc7; 32. Qxe8 Nc4> I agree with your evaluation of that line, but what do you play on Kasparov's 32...Qc2 (as cited by WMD) then? Maybe 33. Qf8? |
|Jun-12-04|| ||beatgiant: <what do you play on Kasparov's 32...Qc2 (as cited by WMD) then? Maybe 33. Qf8?>|
Yes, the position is very obscure with possibilities like 32....Qc2; 33. Qf8 Rc4; 34. Ng5 Rd2; 35. Qxf7+ Kb8; 36. Qh4 Rxg2+; 37. Kh1. It looks like White usually wins the f-pawn or keeps up the attack and is still playing for a win.
Of course, I doubt Alekhine saw all that, and the claim of a forced win is strained. Still, I think his intuition was tremendous for coming up with this unusual kind of attack.
|Jun-13-04|| ||acirce: <Yes, the position is very obscure with possibilities like 32....Qc2; 33. Qf8 Rc4; 34. Ng5 Rd2; 35. Qxf7+ Kb8; 36. Qh4 Rxg2+; 37. Kh1. It looks like White usually wins the f-pawn or keeps up the attack and is still playing for a win.> I looked at that too... what about 37...Qxh7 38. Nxh7 Rcc2 39. Rh5 Rgf2 that is quite forcing and 40. Rxf2 is the only alternative to 40. Kg1 Rg2+ draw. Now 40...Rxf2 and it seems to me that the f-pawn is quite effectively halted. It will even be captured in some lines. I don't think White can hope for win here, while Black has two healthy connected passers ready to march. Thoughts? |
|Jun-13-04|| ||acirce: Sorry, you probably mean 36. Qh5, while I was looking at 36. Qh7. What about 37...Rf2 in that version? (36. Qh5 Rxg2+ 37. Kh1 Rf2) |
|Jun-13-04|| ||beatgiant: <Sorry, you probably mean 36. Qh5, while I was looking at 36. Qh7. What about 37...Rf2 in that version? (36. Qh5 Rxg2+ 37. Kh1 Rf2)>|
Yes, I meant 36. Qh5. I agree that what has no win with 36. Qh7. After 36. Qh5 Rf2, the position is very obscure.
I tried continuing this line using the computer analysis tool on chesslab.com, and it evolved the following very curious variation (hit the analyze button after each move):
36. Qh5 Rf2; 37. Ree1 Ka7; 38. f7 Rcf4; 39. Rxf2 Qxf2; 40. Qe2 Qc5; 41. Rf1 Qxg5; 42. f8=Q Rxf8; 43. Rxf8.
It seems reasonable that Black would have to exchange a rook for White's knight and f-pawn something like the above, although I'm not sure if I understand the exact details of the computer's line. The resulting endgame does not look winning for White, since his king is too exposed. Indeed, chesslab.com's computer plays it out to a repetition a few moves later with Black's queen chasing White's king.
If Maroczy had defended like this, I'm sure Alekhine would have found some way to continue playing for a win. But it's almost impossible to determine what should happen with best play from such a complicated position.
I think few grandmasters and no computers would ever have dreamed of Alekhine's plan of attack with 25. b4 in this game. This is an example of why I enjoy Alekhine's style so much.
|Jun-13-04|| ||acirce: You surely must mean 36. Qh5 Rxg2+ 37. Kh1 Rf2 right? Then on 38. Ree1 why not 38...Qf5? Should win the f-pawn at least. |
|Jun-13-04|| ||beatgiant: <You surely must mean 36. Qh5 Rxg2+ 37. Kh1 Rf2 right? Then on 38. Ree1 why not 38...Qf5? Should win the f-pawn at least.>|
Right on both counts. At this moment, I don't have any convincing detailed line against the defense proposed by Kasparov.
By the way, I haven't seen the Kasparov book. Does he also consider 32. Rxe8 instead of first 32. Qc5+? That is probably more Alekhine-like, since it attempts to keep Black's king from running away.
|Aug-30-04|| ||Pterodactylus: In notes I have for this game, Kasparov, Kotov and Kmoch all mention that 25. Qh5 (instead of Alekhine's wild 25.b4!?) is premature because of 25... Qd2(!-Kasparov, Kmoch), but I can not find a satisfactory defense for black after 25. Qh5! Qd2 26. f6+! Kd8 (forced) 27. Qc5! Bd7 (forced again) 28. Qc7+ Ke8 29. Qb8+ Bc8 (29... Nc8 30. Qxb7! ) 30. Rc7! Rd7 (Black seems to hold everything now, but...) 31. Bxa6!! (I admit, this one is Shredder's, I would never have found it on my own) and Black falls apart. Note that White's Bishop is hanging all the time, but Black has no time to capture it. The Queen check on e3 also seems to make little difference. If this analysis holds water, than 25. b4 is truly pointless. |
|Aug-30-04|| ||clocked: <Pterodactylus> nice find! your next task is to show the win after 25.Qh5 e5 |
|Aug-31-04|| ||Pterodactylus: <clocked> There is no forced win after 25. Qh5 e5. What I was trying to show is that white can win after 25. Qh5 Qd2, which is the very move that 25. b4 was aimed against. After 25. Qh5 e5 26. f6+ Kd8 and, say, 27. Be2 White stands better because his King is rather more secure. Black may hold though, with perfect defense. I can't really tell. |
|Mar-15-06|| ||goldenbear: No one is mentioning that 23.Nh7+, although brilliant, is surely inferior to Bh7. I don't have a program but firstly the endgame after 23.Kg7 24.Qe5
looks to me to be winning for white and secondly the knight was nice on f6 and its clear g4 is the best square for the queen; why encourage black's king to the e-file, a file on which white's queen will ultimately prove insecure?|
|Jun-06-08|| ||Jesspatrick: In "Middlegame Planning" (Moscow, 1960; translated English 1990), Romanovsky cites a different move order for the opening: 1.d4 d5 2.f3 f6 3.c4 e6 4.g5 bd7 5.e3 h6 6.h4 e7 7.c3 0-0 8.c1 c6 9.d3 a6|
from there on, the scores agree. I'm thinking Romanovsky's account is probably right out of the tournament book.
|Jun-29-09|| ||visayanbraindoctor: This and other Alekhine games (also that of other masters) are a bust of this strange narcissistic present-generation notion that the masters of the early 20th century did not fully comprehend the idea of sacrificing pawns for dynamic play and initiative. Alekhine's games throughout his career abound with it. As early as 15. Bd3, he already offers his a-pawn for the sake of the initiative. Then he offers his d-pawn by commencing the line 17. f4. All the while, he leaves his Queenside pawns at the mercy of Black. Maroczy puts up a stubborn defense at first, but then finally begins cracking under the intense pressure of an Alekhine attack.|
|Oct-02-10|| ||Richard Taylor: Alekhine thought that his 25. b4 (he gives !! for it) was best but Black can equalise. Better, in fact, is 25. exf6 (the wonders of having a computer beside one!) Without a comp. I was trying to work a move out and missed 25 b4 thinking that 25. Qf2 was the move. Alekhine's conception is still quite brilliant. His idea is to get his Q to e4 and later he can sac on e8...a beautiful idea. Also if Rxb4 26. Qh5 threatens to win the Q but that isn't sound either as noted above. But very hard to defend in practice.|
But that he "out-calculated" Maroczy mow seems a bit unfair - more likely his attack was aggressive and good from a practical point of view. For Maroczy it was hard to defend.
|Oct-02-10|| ||Richard Taylor: To e5 I mean.|
|Dec-23-12|| ||DrGridlock: Deep position analysis (depth=24) by Komodo gives some insights at the critical move in this game: White's move 25. |
click for larger view
Analysis by Komodo32 3 32bit:
1. ± (0.85): 25.fxe6 Rxe6 26.Qf2 Qb4 27.Bf5 Rd2 28.Qg3 Bc6 29.Bh3 Ree2 30.Rf4 Rxg2+ 31.Bxg2 Rxg2+ 32.Kf1 Rxg3 33.Rxb4 Rg6 34.Re1+ Kd8 35.Rxb6 Bg2+ 36.Kf2 Rxb6 37.Kxg2 Rxb2+ 38.Kg3 b5 39.axb5 axb5 40.Nf6 b4
2. ± (0.72): 25.Nf6 Bc6 26.Ng8+ Kd7 27.Be4 Qd2 28.Qh5 Kc7 29.Bxc6 bxc6 30.Nf6 Kb8 31.fxe6 Rxe6 32.Qxf7 Rdd6 33.Nh5 Nd7 34.Ng3 Rf6 35.Qc4 Rxf1+ 36.Rxf1 Qxb2 37.Qxa6 Qb6+ 38.Qxb6+ Nxb6 39.Rb1 Ka7 40.Ne4 Re6
3. ² (0.45): 25.Qh5 e5 26.f6+ Kd8 27.Be2 Nd7 28.Qxh6 Qd2 29.Qxd2 Rxd2 30.Rcd1 Kc7 31.Bh5 e4 32.Rxd2 Rxd2 33.Re1 Nc5 34.b4 Nd3 35.Rxe4 Bxa4 36.Be2 Kb6 37.Ng5 Bc6 38.Re7 Nf4 39.Kf2 Bb5 40.Ke3
4. ² (0.28): 25.b4 Qxb4 26.Qe5 Nd5 27.Rb1 Qc5 28.Rxb7+ Kd8 29.Kh1 Rxd3 30.fxe6 Re3 31.Rb8+ Kc7 32.Qb2 Rb6 33.Rxb6 Nxb6 34.exf7 Bxf7 35.Rxf7+ Re7 36.Rxe7+ Qxe7 37.Qc3+ Kb8 38.Nf6 Nxa4 39.Qg3+ Qc7 40.Qe3 Qd6
White has better options at move 25 - fxe6 rates significantly higher than b4 - but it's b4 that gives Black the "opportunity" to go spectacularly wrong.
If there's a "!" to be attached to White's 25'th move, it's more for psychological reasons than pure chess ones.
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