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Ratmir Kholmov vs David Bronstein
"I Smell a Rat" (game of the day Dec-30-2012)
USSR Championship (1964/65), Kiev URS, rd 17, Jan-23
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation. Main Line (B99)  ·  1-0


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Given 43 times; par: 35 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Dec-05-02  ughaibu: Looks convincing.
Dec-21-04  notyetagm: I love 26 d7!, a <Novotny interference> move, simultaneously closing the line of the ♖a7 to h7 and the line of the ♗c8 to e6. One of those lines will still be closed no matter how Black takes the d7 pawn and that closed line will make it 1-0.
Aug-27-05  abcpokerboy: I always figured that Mikhail Tal, after seeing this game, probably greatly admired the move 18.Nc6!! and was probably envious he didn't get a chance to make this great sacrifice.
May-13-08  yxcvbnm: wow i now looked at the game 3 or 4 times and i still feel like having no idea what was going on there. seems like quite a lot of ks moves are way too deep for my tiny little brain :-)
Premium Chessgames Member
  arsen387: I found this game with annotation in Chessmaster's database. According to it, black's decisive mistake was 14..b4. Also whites could have won quicker with 25.d7! and now if Bxd7 then Rxd7 finishes off quickly (notice that black Q is tied to the defence of R on f8 and can't recapture). This is really a fascinating game. Bravo Kholmov!
Jun-07-10  elohah: And now for the wet blanket...

Just looked over Gligo-Fischer from the Yugoslavia Candidates Tourn. of '59. Gligo played the correct line with 14 Nce2! and then missed 16 Be2!, which is a virtual bust of the line. 14 g5? is just a mistake. In 60MG, on p. 80, Kholmov himself is seen giving the best defense. " 14...fg! 15 fe fe 16 Nxe6 Qd7 17 Nd5"

and here Kholmov gives 17...Qxe6?, when instead 17...Bd8! (even 17...Rb8 works) just wins. White's knight has to cash in on f8, and after ...Qxh3, Black will get two powerful bishops for that rook after collecting the trapped knight, and so he wins.

Is Bobby's judgement of Black's chances vindicated, then? No, because Gligorich should have beaten him (again) by playing 16 Be2! Bobby gives a line that he says is 'anybody's game'. It's mostly White's game; it's not critical to go thru my analysis here. I think Bf3 at one point just kept White up a pawn. So that's probably why Black is no longer playing this line.

Is my only role in Chess just to be a spoiler? This keeps happening more than I would expect. I don't know. I'm babbling.
Carry on, kids.

Jun-07-10  elohah: Yeah, 'wins' is a bit strong, but Black is better, even if he has to play ...Be6 and ..Bxd5 later.
Jun-13-10  elohah: I made a beginner's mistake above with the Bf3? suggestion, which dumps a piece after ...Nxf3 and ...e5! But I found a better move for White, vindicating the judgement that the whole line is a bust for Black, and that Glogoric should have won after 16 Be2! I'll just post it over on Glogoric-Fischer ('59 Cand. Tourn.)
Feb-11-12  Hesam7: <elohah: Yeah, 'wins' is a bit strong, but Black is better, even if he has to play ...Be6 and ..Bxd5 later.>

Clearly Gligoric disagreed with you several years later when he faced this line he opted for 14. g5 and after 14. ... fxg5 15. fxe6 fxe6 16. Nxe6 Qd7 17. Nd5 Bd8 18. Nxd8 Qxh3 19. Bxh3 Bxh3 20. Nb7

click for larger view

he went on to win in Gligoric vs G Ligterink, 1966.

Apr-01-12  bengalcat47: This is an impressive win for Kholmov against a great opponent.I had the hardest time finding this game here. In Levy's book on Gligoric "The Chess of Gligoric" this game is mentioned in the annotations of Gligoric's win over Fischer at Bled 1959, only in the Gligoric book Kholmov's surname is spelled "Cholmov."
Oct-01-12  LoveThatJoker: Guess-the-Move Final Score:

Kholmov vs Bronstein, 1965.
Your score: 48 (par = 33)


Dec-30-12  DanielBryant: This is definitely an all time classic and well worth the occasional revisit.
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: In Wade's book on Fischer, Ratmir's surname is given as 'Holmov', which made it difficult to find the game. Apparently, in some Eastern-bloc countries, the last name could be spelled in a variety of ways.

In any case, some of the best annotations to this game can be found in 'The World's Greatest Chess Games' by Burgess, Nunn & Emms, of which someone has taken the time to organize all these games into one file in the <CG> database:

Game Collection: World's Greatest Chess Games- Nunn Emms Burgess

Dec-30-12  sukatma: fxg5 it is better than b4
Dec-30-12  Kikoman: Nice game!
Dec-30-12  Conrad93: I thought the score was reversed for a second, so I kept thinking that Bronstein was going to defy the laws of chess to win.
Dec-30-12  Conrad93: Not to be a negative Nancy, but Bronstein's biggest mistake was castling into an attack. Too much optimism.
Premium Chessgames Member
  playground player: Two rooks are better than one.
Dec-30-12  waustad: <morphishine>It gets even crazier if someone from Eastern Europe spends time in Germany, where transliterations from Cyrillic are much different from those to English.

<conrad>My thoughts exactly. This reminded me of the game Gligoric vs Fischer, 1959 from M60MG that Fischer titled "Castling into it," though that ended as a draw.

Dec-31-12  RandomVisitor: After 14.g5:

click for larger view

Rybka 4.1 x64:

[-0.30] d=24 14...fxg5 15.Qh6 Ng4 16.Qh3 Nf2 17.Qh6 d5 18.Rg1 Qf4+ 19.Rd2 Bb7 20.fxe6 dxe4 21.exf7+ Rxf7 22.Ne6 Qf5 23.Be2 Qg6 24.Qxg6+ hxg6 25.Nxg5 Rf5 26.Ne6 Kf7 27.Rd7 Bc8 28.Rxe7+ Kxe7 29.Nd4 Rc5

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: A rook ahead should win.
Jun-05-14  Capacorn: A couple of sick moves in this game, the kind that make you feel like a chess mental midget. 18.Nc6 and 26.d7 are the kind of ideas that make me smile and feed my imagination. Lovely, just lovely.
Mar-14-15  m.okun: Good game!
Mar-14-15  Howard: Was this game played in 1964 or in 1965. Sources are a bit inconsistent.
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: <Capacorn: A couple of sick moves in this game, the kind that make you feel like a chess mental midget. 18.Nc6 and 26.d7 are the kind of ideas that make me smile and feed my imagination. Lovely, just lovely.>

Great comment, I couldn't have said it better :)

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