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Alexey Sokolsky vs David Bronstein
USSR Championship (1949), Moscow URS, rd 18, Nov-17
Three Knights Opening: General (C46)  ·  0-1


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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-31-05  Resignation Trap: Botvinnik had some harsh words to write about this game in his notebook about Bronstein's games: "Three Knights Opening, transposing into the Steinitz Defense to the Spanish. In a well-known variation (Qf3) 'Br' made what would appear to be a new move ...h6, and then obviously aimed for the endgame. The endgame was rubbish, although it has to be thought that Sokolsky could also have won without the endgame.

In the endgame 'Br' cleverly forced White to calculate variations, and Sokolsky went wrong and in the end lost a pawn.

The resumption, all based on 2-move variations. In general, a terrible opening, but then good play; 'Br' clearly counted on Sokolsky's fatigue."

Aug-31-05  aw1988: I've seen worse. This is "so-so" for Botvinnik.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: <D. Bronstein> writes in <200 Open Games> that to play for win in 3N-Opening, Black has to sucker White into some sort of adventure. Otherwise White simply dictates a draw from the position of strengh.

With respect to this game, Bronsteing describes the following trap he set up: <An interesting question is whether Be7 or Pb2 need more protection after the <14...Qb7>. It would seem that the bishop since after 15.Qe2! Qxb2 16.Kd2, Black can not pare the two threats 17.Re1 and 17.Rb1 Qa3 18.Rxb8+.

However, Black can disregard the threat of Qxe7 and calmly castle: 15.Qe2? O-O!, since bad is 16.Qxe7? Re8!.

There is one further undisclosed secret in the position: the variation 15.Qe2 Qxb2+ 16.Kd2 O-O 17.Qxe7. White has won a piece but will he be able to hold his advantage also after 17...Qb4 ?

Therefore White did not try to find a refutation of Black plan, but exchanged queens: <15.Qxb7 Rxb7>, and kept an advantage into the endgame.>

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