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Vassily Ivanchuk vs Artur Yusupov
"Brussels Routs" (game of the day Aug-10-2016)
Brussel (1991), Brussels BEL, rd 9, Aug-??
King's Indian Defense: Fianchetto Variation. Classical Fianchetto (E67)  ·  0-1


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Given 35 times; par: 54 [what's this?]

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find similar games 26 more Ivanchuk/Yusupov games
sac: 23...Nxh4 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 4 OF 7 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Mar-03-08  Kwesi: That e3 pawn was so strong, probably worth at least a rook.
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: That is one of the beauties of chess, you have to be alert to new evaluations and interpretations.
Sep-21-08  Andrijadj: Both players played this game under enormous pressure,there was a coup under way in the Soviet Union,and jet they manage to produce one of the best games ever...Simply brilliant!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Bobsterman3000: Nice use of the a1 rook by Chucky...
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jim Bartle: "Both players played this game under enormous pressure,there was a coup under way in the Soviet Union,and jet they manage to produce one of the best games ever...Simply brilliant!"

And at a pretty fast time control.

Nov-06-08  Andrijadj: Yes,45 moves in one hour,or something like that...
Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessmensch: I didn't go through all the posts to see whether someone else noted this, but this game is analyzed extensively in "The Mammoth Book of the World's Greatest Chess Games" (Burgess, Nunn, Emms)--Game #85.
Mar-01-09  LIFE Master AJ: I have also annotated this game on one of my web pages. (
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: The final stage is also annotaed here
<Latent Patterns>
Aug-11-10  freakclub: According to the CG database, Vassily Ivanchuk beat Artur Yusupov 7 to 3, with 18 draws.

Unfortunately for Ivanchuk, this is the game that will always be remembered between the two--a genuine masterpiece of the evergreen game.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Jim Bartle: How would black win after 23 h3? I would guess 23...Nf2, but then what?
Nov-29-10  sevenseaman: If one were to look for a well-earned win in the annals of chess then this game surely has some very reasonable pretensions!
Feb-05-11  falso contacto: AJ: I suggest to avoid signs (?! etc) in the opening phase (first 5-10 moves)of classic games considering that the players are just selecting the type of struggle they are going to face. Classic games are played by top players in a serious situation. You certainly did a great job.
Premium Chessgames Member
  DarthStapler: This is one of the greatest games of the late 20th century
Premium Chessgames Member
  Mozart72: Ivanchuk vs Yusupov

White: 8/16 = 0.5

Black: 6/16 = 0.375

0.5 > 0.375, so the chess score for White is 1 and the chess score for Black is 0, but history turned it around: Yusupov won. Never said my method was flawless. It's like gambling.

May-11-11  eightsquare: Awesome game.
Jul-09-11  SirChrislov: La mas perrona de todos los tiempos.
Aug-04-11  50movesaheadofyou: Of all the games played in the 90's, only this one and Kasparov-Topalov were immediately hailed as great.

others that come close are short-timman, kasp-anand(game 10) and Cifuentes-Zviagintsev.

Aug-17-11  DrMAL: Thanx <qqdos> for pointing out this game in Kasparov vs Topalov, 1999 it is also a totally fascinating one.

23...Nxh4?! was already a mistake. But with the sac 24...Qxh4? black loses to 25.Nce7+! (e.g., 25...Kh8 26.Nxf5 up two pieces with no real counter-play for black 26...Qh2+ 27.Kf1 + -).

Chucky checked with the wrong knight, and in the same combination 27...Bf6 should have saved black (not possible if 25.Nce7+ because of 28.Nxf6) for a perpetual (e.g., 28.Ne5 Bxe5 29.Qb7 Bxd6 30.Nxd6 Qh4 31.Kg1 Qf2+ 32.Kh1 Qh4+).

But instead of 27...Bf6 black played 27...Re6? another losing move. Chucky again missed another win with 28.Nce7! (e.g., 28...Rxe7 29.Bxe7 f3 30.exf3 e2+ 31.Ke1 exd1Q+ 32.Qxd1 + -).

With 28.Qb7?! black got a big advantage via the sequence that was played. However, Chucky again used the wrong knight with 31.Nce7+? If he played 31.Nfe7+ then, in the same sequence as played, 33.Ne5 would protect f3 and white may have survived.

After this second wrong knight move 31.Nce7+? white's best was 33.Nxg7 but Yusupov played the best combination to ensure his win. 39.Bxh3? was a final mistake, stepping into a mate in 2.

This game is very different from the Kasparov one in that the sac employed here was totally unsound. It's just that the tactics involved were so complicated, Chucky did not see them OTB. Beautiful finish by Yusupov, the game is maybe the best "Evergreen" (not "Immortal") one ever.

Aug-17-11  SimonWebbsTiger: @<Dr.Mal>

the game got a thumping 86/90 points from the Informator panel in issue 53, winning the best game prize. (The game reference is 52/592.)

Jussupov's analysis, if it is correct, shows that there were numerous junctures leading to equality and that 28. Qb7 was the actual mistake.

Artur gives the idea 25. Nce7 Kh8 26. Nf5 Qh2 27. Kf1 Be5 as probably winning.

I agree with everybody else. This is one of the most dramatic games of the 1990s, as it was game 9 of the candidate's match. Chucky outrated Artur by some 100 ELO points and was the odds on favourite to win; but he lost. As did Gelfand and Karpov. The winner being Short. Before the stuff with the PCA and the match with Kasparov outside of FIDE. But that is, as they say, another story!

Aug-17-11  DrMAL: <SWT> Thanx for the info. 86/90 sounds like a fine wine LOL. Well, I had the advantage of verifying it all via Houdini (and got the hint on 27...Re6? too), giving it an hour or so to compute at junctures to make sure. The tactics were unusually complicated, it took me a few hours to figure all the fine points out! Most certainly one of the most dramatic games of the 90s and a great win in the end as well. I had not analyzed it before, it was an very difficult one to fully unravel, cheers.
Aug-17-11  qqdos: <DrMAL & SWT> thanx. The voters chose this game above Kasparov and I think it will continue to delight them for many years to come - (all-time) Immortal or Evergreen? I'll take either description! Chucky was busting a gut to win this one but met his match. Incidentally on the question of unsoundness, have a look at posts in 2006-7 by <maxi & offramp>.
Aug-17-11  DrMAL: <qqdos> Ole maxi managed to troll his way onto my IGNORE list some time ago. At least <offramp> is trying and not being rude, even if his "analysis" is incorrect (and therefore misleading) so I have not (yet) ignored him.

I call this game "Evergreen" and not "Immortal" because the sac was unsound. With correct play, Chucky should have won. It's a fabulous and fascinating game but Kasparov's completely overshadows it IMO, his sac was sound to begin with and, even though he made a mistake in it (as we discussed there), his win is truly spectacular, much more than the finish here, cheers.

Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: <DrMAL> I am sorry if I was rude before and/or overstated my case. Basically my point is that one should not trust computers too much. There are two fundamental reasons:

1- A computer evaluation, say of a defensive position, is for <the computer> defending the position. It does not mean any human can defend it (or perhaps only Kasparov). Their evaluations do not work in many positions for practical human playing.

2- Chess is so complex that you cannot believe an evaluation just like that. As you may be aware, a computer relies, at the end of the branch ply calculation, on an evaluation funtion. This depends on the software, its version, and many intangibles having to do with the way the software is being implemented. Thus the engine can give a position +0.3, and actually have an inferior position that in practice would be -0.3 (The evaluation function in general does not depend on the number of plys. But they are always evolving as programmers get more experience.)

As a matter of fact sometimes I often find your comments enlightning and interesting, so please carry on. Just do not trust the machines so much. They are OK as a quick check on the tactics, but they cannot replace human analysis.

Aug-17-11  qqdos: Since posting the above I have been re-reading Graham Burgess's comments on this game (in The World's Greatest Chess Games - Nunn, Emms & Burgess) and I think he sums it up perfectly: "Normally rapidplay games are scrappy affairs .... However, this one was a sacrificial masterpiece, on a par with Anderssen's games of the 1850's. Although Yusupov himself wasn't too impressed 'It amused the audience', the game was published and highly praised around the world. Yusupov's attack isn't quite sound, it must be said, but it is very close indeed. After Ivanchuk misses his one defensive chance, the finish is nothing short of magical."!!!
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