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Mark Taimanov vs Robert James Fischer
Fischer - Taimanov Candidates Quarterfinal (1971), Vancouver CAN, rd 1, May-16
King's Indian Defense: Orthodox Variation. Korchnoi Attack (E97)  ·  0-1


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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: keypusher, I know I read it online but I just did a google search and came up empty handed. It might have been in Winter's chess column but I'm not sure.

"La Palamede" is the French chess magazine which first published the game--probably most of the fact & fiction surrounding that titanic struggle come from that source.

Jul-26-05  sibilare: <Koster: > I think the sealed move is only played once both players are back sitting at the table. Then the envelope is opened up to be played.

If the player whom sealed the move resigns prior to that. Then techincally the move has not been played.

That is my take on it... I never had to play a game where a move was sealed.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Mateo: <GK agreed with Taimanov's decision not to take the exchange with 25 Nc7.> I wonder why. Maybe the King thinks that after 27...Qf7 28.Nxa8 Nxf4, Fischer has enough compensation because :

1) he has one pawn for the exchange (the extra pawn is the d pawn which can already advance at least to d4)

2) the White Knight cannot come back quickly into play on the c7 square (Black controls it twice with his two heavy pieces).

3) Black could get some attacking prospects on the Kingside.

But the question remains: is this just enough compensation or more than enough? It is not clear to me that the move actually played (25.Nd4) was better.

Aug-03-07  talisman: <keypusher> what does<OMGP> say about 12. Ng5? this seems to be the seems we can put ! or ? or any combination of the two behind white's 12th move which achieves the light square bishop but at the cost of a pawn.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: 38...Qe1 looks good to me :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <ketchuplover: 38...Qe1 looks good to me :)> It actually leads only to a draw, since White gets a perpetual check after 39.Qxa7+. 38...Qb6, as played by Fischer, is the only move leading to a win for Black.

Btw, an important reason why 31...Kh7 would have been significantly better for Black than Kf7, as mentioned above by <keypusher>, is that on f7 the king occupies a square which would have been better left for the rook: after 31...Kh7 32.Be2 <Rf7>, 33.Nxf5 would lose to 33...Ng8!

Jun-23-08  addiction to chess: I think the reason Taimanov resigned is because after the bishop moves, the knight on g6 can go to e5 then c6 with a dangerous outpost and can safely march the d pawn and also since Fischer is up the exchange.
Jun-23-08  Travis Bickle: Taimanov made a statement about Fischers playing, which Bobby read and rather appreciated many years later on a radio broadcast which Bobby read out loud 'Taimanov': "at GM level of chess you know what your opponent is trying to achieve on the board, wether you can stop it is another matter. With Fischer we were playing chess Bobby was playing something else. When we finally realized his intentions it was too late you were dead." As Garry Kasparov said in 'My great Predecessors' "Bobby Fischer theoretically was at least 15 years ahead of his contemporaries."
Aug-03-09  Colonel Mortimer: <I think the reason Taimanov resigned is because after the bishop moves, the knight on g6 can go to e5 then c6 with a dangerous outpost> Or simply deliver mate with knight and rook. If White moves either g or h pawn the other knight will join in the mating net.
Feb-09-10  BearJr: Taimanov missed the blow 27.Ba6!,Rb6 28.Bb5!,Qf7 29.Rc7!,Ne7 etc... (says Rybka3).
Mar-22-10  birthtimes: This looks like it was the first time that Taimanov ever played 9. Bd2. This makes one wonder why he did not play 9. Nd2 since he had played it five times previously, winning three times and drawing twice. Fischer seems to have played against 9. Nd2 only one time previous to this game, a blitz game against Korchnoi in 1970.
Mar-22-10  birthtimes: And both players would have been very familiar with the following game...

Geller vs Minic, 1968

Jun-27-10  Marmot PFL: 33 Nxf5 For the exchange White has a pawn more, and his pieces, first of all his knight, are in good positions. Unfortunately Taimanov played badly for the rest of the game. (Tal)

<GK argues that after 36 Ng3! instead of 36 Nd4 white would still have had everything to play for>

Here Tal recommended 36 Qg5 or even 36 g4. His notes are older though and do not benefit from computer lines.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Garech: This is the best game of thier match, in mu opinion - great play from both sides but as in the other games Fischer has greater precision - especially with reduced material - and dominates.

<Marmot> - even with perfect play after 33.Nxf5 white is struggling for equality at best (according to Fritz 12) as Fischer, as always, played like a machine. Similarly to Kasparov, Fritz suggests 36.Ng3 - where's your source for this? I'd be interested to know.

Tal's aggressive 36.Qg5 seems to be refuted by 36...Rb2!

click for larger view

where play might continue 37.Bg7 Qc7+ 38.Kg1 Rb1+ 39.Bf1 Qb6!

click for larger view

with a big edge for black.

36.g4 is definitely preferable, with roughly the same eval as 36.Ng3.



Mar-17-12  Riverbeast: You can't mess with Mother Nature....

And you can't attack Bobby Fischer

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Not a good way for Taimanov to start the match.
Dec-15-14  MindCtrol9: When Taimanov played 16.Ah5 with the idea to protect the pawn on e5, it looks obvious he did not calculate well because when Fischer captured the pawn on e6 and Taimanov captured on b7, Fischer gets the initiative starting with Nf 6 where he has to retrieve the Bishop followed Rub1 and taking on b2 threatening the Bishop on d2 which is unprotected.
Oct-18-15  maseras: 26.Qe3?
(26.Qg3! Kh7 27.Rc6! )
(36.g4! ∞)
Apr-01-17  Howard: Timman said recently in NIC that rather than waste time with 27.h3, the immediate 27.Ba6! would have given White a significant advantage.
May-19-17  Mithrain: What a complex game indeed! Great fighting-chess!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: I like 2 things about the game. The x-ray capture 39 Nxa7, which is a tactic I'm trying to get to see as routine, and the fact that the final position doesn't look resignable but then when I really look the threat of the black N getting to f3 is too strong.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Fischerfriend: I'd like to contribute to this legendary game. (Just like the 1st matchgame Fischer-Petrosian the great American won, but not without having overcome great perils...) In my view, 27.h3 was a fine move and 27..Rf8 was doubtful. Let me explain:

In the game there was played:
27.h3 Rf8 28.Ba6 Rb6 29.Rc7? Qa4!
According to Kasparow 29.Bb5 was the right move: 29..Rb5: 30.Rc7 Qe8 31.Rg7:+! Kg7: 32.Bh6:+ Kf7 33.Bf8: Nf8: 34.Nb5: Qb5:
35.Qa7:+ with an equal position.
Now I wonder why, after 27.Bb5! Kasparow gives
27.. Ng4 as black's best defense(, although white holds the advantage after the fine moves: 28.Qg3 Nf4: 29.Bb7: Bd4: 30.Qf4: Bf2:+ 31.Kh1
Bb6 32.Bc6!).
But... why not playing as in the game after 28.Ba6 ?

So: 27.Ba6 Rb6! 28.Bb5 Rb5: 29.Rc7 Qe8 and the consequences could similar to 27.h3 Rf8 28.Ba6 Rb6 29.Bb5 Rb5: (or 28.Bb5 Rb5: too), so 30.Rg7:+ etc.,
but now:
- Rf8 is not at stake, nor is pawn a7
- furthermore h2-h3 would have been pretty
useful for white
So, why going into the complications of 27.Bb5 Ng4, when black can attain a better position as in the game, which was just fine for black!?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Fischerfriend: My reaction to Mindctrl9 from december 15-14:

16.Bh5 was a fine move. Now Black had to capture the e6 pawn with the Queen, after which white took on b7. If white did not play, Fischer would grab the pawn by Ne8-c7-e6, which would be much more comfortable!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Fischerfriend: Comment to Garech's remark on March-16-12;
I guess the endposition of your variation, after 39..Qb6, is a draw:
40.Bf6: Rf1:+ 41.Kf1: Qb1+ 42.Ke2 Qd3+ perpetual. Or 40..Qf6: 41.Nh6+ Kg7 42.Nf5+ and again a perpetual check.
Aug-01-18  Howard: Kasparov questioned the choice 36.g4! in his MGP, but Timman gives a brief computer line in NIC that suggests that it was actually White's best option.
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