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Vasily Smyslov vs Mikhail Botvinnik
FIDE World Championship Tournament (1948), Hague NLD/Moscow RUS, rd 13, Apr-15
Sicilian Defense: Richter-Rauzer Variation. General (B60)  ·  0-1
ANALYSIS [x]

FEN COPIED

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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-26-04
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gregor Samsa Mendel: I've always had a peculiar fondness for this game. Botvinnik allows himself to be saddled with an ugly pawn formation, because the resulting open lines allow his rooks and bishops to slice through Smylov's position. I also admire the ruthless efficiency he displays in moves 24-38 as he tightens his grip. The ability to see past the superficial features of a position and grasp its hidden strengths was the hallmark of Botvinnik's style.
Jul-19-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  nasmichael: A win is a win, and the songs of victories are sung by the victors. If Botvinnik yielded himself to this pawn formation, then it was with purposeful intent. If I am not up to diving in to the analysis necessary to support or refute the choices that bring him there, then I can only look and wonder. There was an article by Larry Parr at the World Chess Network about Botvinnik, and the request for computer analysis aficionados to look at pawn moves vs. piece moves of the masters. In one of these games of the Hague-Moscow World Chess Championship to fill the position of world champion after Alekhine, who died in 1946 undefeated, Botvinnik made 14 pawn moves in a 30 move game.

(see http://www.worldchessnetwork.com/En... for more).

All this to say, if it works, it works. "Beauty is truth, truth beauty."

Jul-20-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: To me, this is typical Botvinnik - Smyslov; I didn't spend the game wondering what they were doing to each other, I wondered what they were doing to themselves.
Oct-27-09  pericles of athens: my goodness 35....Bd4 is a brilliant move. what vision and awareness. classic botvinnik.
Jan-05-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Marmot PFL: <In this game Smyslov is completely unrecognizable> according to Polugaevsky, who gives white ? marks on moves 14, 15 and 17.
Jul-16-11  AVRO38: <I've always had a peculiar fondness for this game.>

Perhaps you're not aware that in 1991 Botvinnik admitted to the Dutch magazine Vrij Nederland (20 August 1991) that Smyslov was ordered by the Soviet authorities to lose this game.

By the way, it was Smyslov's only loss to Botvinnik (=4 -1) in the 1948 tournament.

Jul-16-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gregor Samsa Mendel: To me, Smyslov lost very convincingly. I guess Polugaevsky was dropping hints.
Jul-16-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <AVRO 38> Horseshit. Why make your lies so easy to check?

Anyone interested in what Botvinnik actually said can read here.

http://www.chesscafe.com/text/skitt...

Jul-16-11  Shams: <Perhaps you're not aware that in 1991 Botvinnik admitted to the Dutch magazine Vrij Nederland (20 August 1991) that Smyslov was ordered by the Soviet authorities to lose this game.>

How many games did he admit were thrown like this? Did anyone ever asked him about his own complicity? I'm sure <keypusher> has written about it somewhere, I'll take a look.

Easy to say from Seattle, WA in the year 2011, but if Botvinnik knew beforehand and did not protest that's pretty sleazy.

Jul-16-11  Shams: Jesus, that was fast! Ha!
Jul-16-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <Shams> Pretty much anything AVRO38 posts is nonsense, but his statements about Botvinnik are particularly worthless. See, e.g., here:

Robert James Fischer

Jul-16-11  AVRO38: <keypusher>

Your link just proves my point, even the author agrees that Botvinnik and the Soviets fixed the 1948 tournament. It states:

Botvinnik was asked if he had ever known of collusion between Soviet players. His reply: “I have experienced myself that orders were given. In 1948 I played with Keres, Smyslov, Reshevsky and Euwe for the world title...during the second half in Moscow something unpleasant happened. At a very high level, it was proposed that the other Soviet players [i.e. Keres and Smyslov] would lose to me on purpose"

Typical! Does anyone expect anything less from a scumbag like Botvinnik?

This game was the first b/w Smyslov and Botvinnik in the second (Moscow) half of the tournament, right after the "orders were given" to use Botvinnik's own words.

Jul-16-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <AVRO38> You're a worthless liar and troll, and I won't waste more time on you today. Anyone who cares can click the link.
Jul-16-11  AVRO38: <You're a worthless liar..>

I'm quoting from the link you yourself provided!!!

I invite anyone who is interested to read the link, which concludes, after presenting a long list of evidence, that Botvinnik and the Soviets fixed the 1948 tournament. Also, I invite anyone who is interested to read the actual Dutch article from 1991 as well.

Jul-16-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: I've always wondered if AVRO38 was schach matov's sock puppet. Similar prose styles, extreme hatred for particular (though different) players. Of course AVRO38's opinions are particularly ludicrous, e.g. Alekhine could have crushed Nigel Short in a blindfold simul.
Jul-16-11  psmith: <AVRO38>

You quoted from <keypusher>'s link but you quoted selectively. I could as easily quote just this from the linked article:

“But of course I refused!"

Botvinnik's words.

Jul-17-11  AVRO38: <“But of course I refused!">

How do you refuse a resignation?

Jul-17-11  psmith: <AVRO38> Are you suggesting that Smyslov was wrong to resign in the final position?
Jul-17-11  AVRO38: <Are you suggesting that Smyslov was wrong to resign in the final position?>

I'm merely pointing out that Smyslov was ordered to lose to Botvinnik once the tournament moved to Moscow. This was the first game between the two in the Moscow half and Smyslov followed his orders. By the time they met again Botvinnik's lead was secure.

This was Smyslov's only loss to Botvinnik in the 1948 tournament (=4 -1)

Jul-17-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <AVRO38>

<I'm merely pointing out that Smyslov was ordered to lose to Botvinnik once the tournament moved to Moscow.>

You're merely trolling.

Jul-17-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: “But of course I refused!"

Botvinnik refused? Wouldn't it be Keres and Smyslov who had to refuse to play badly. Even if they refused as a group or Botvinnik told the others to play normally, wouldn't an order from Stalin affect them?

Jul-18-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <Calli: “But of course I refused!"

Botvinnik refused? Wouldn't it be Keres and Smyslov who had to refuse to play badly. Even if they refused as a group or Botvinnik told the others to play normally, wouldn't an order from Stalin affect them?>

Depends on what form the "order" took and to whom it was directed. Neither of which is particularly clear.

Jul-18-11  ughaibu: It's not even clear that there were orders as Botvinnik is next quoted as talking about a proposal. I suggest starting with a reliable translation of Botvinnik's actual words.
Jul-18-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: The original article was in Dutch and apparently no longer online. We do have Tim Krabbé's translation:

http://timkr.home.xs4all.nl/chess2/...

Krabbé admitted that his conclusion, "a high-level plan for foul play in the 1948 tournament—and that he and Keres were involved." was too strong. He asked Genna Sosonko what he thought:

http://timkr.home.xs4all.nl/chess2/...

Sosonko says something along the lines that I was trying to say:

"there was a general atmosphere in which it was very clear to Keres that it would not be a good idea to beat Botvinnik"

Nov-14-15  PJs Studio: I had no idea there was any funny business going on before this game. I hope it's a rumor! Mainly because this game had a big effect on me as a young player because as early as move 23 every black pawn is isolated, yet his pieces so active that he won without much effort.

I'm sure the great genius Botvinnik was, he could win a game like this vs Smyslov. So AVRO38 would really have to bring up some good examples of collusion to change my opinion of this masterpiece.

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