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Anatoly Karpov vs Boris Spassky
"AK-74" (game of the day Mar-16-2017)
Karpov - Spassky Candidates Semifinal (1974), Leningrad URS, rd 9, May-03
Sicilian Defense: Scheveningen. Modern Variation (B83)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 5 OF 5 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Mar-16-17  devere: After 24.Nb1!! it is doubtful that Black can any longer hold the game, even by perfect play. This is a deservedly famous game by Karpov.
Mar-16-17  Ironmanth: Safe to say I don't understand this game; perhaps after another cup of morning Joe! I suspect infinite subtlety being negotiated that I am just missing. Sigh. C'est la vie. Hope others enjoy this one.
Mar-16-17  bobbydan: The pun is greater than the game. AK=Avtomat Kalashnikov and AK=Anatoly Karpov!!
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <AK-74>
Mar-16-17  Howard: Yet ANOTHER game which I'm almost positive has been GOTD before. What gives ?
Mar-16-17  Andrew Chapman: I wondered about 17... c5 with idea Nc6 and Nd4.
Mar-16-17  devere: <Ironmanth: Safe to say I don't understand this game; perhaps after another cup of morning Joe! I suspect infinite subtlety being negotiated that I am just missing. Sigh. C'est la vie. Hope others enjoy this one.>

This to me is the classic "what do you do when there is nothing obvious to do?" game. It's what separates the world champions like Karpov from the rest of us.

Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: Adhiban said he vaguely recalled Nb1 when he played 18 Nb1 in his sensational game at Tata Steel in January B Adhiban vs D Andreikin, 2017
Mar-16-17  Strelets: <bobbydan> Avtomat Kalashnikova. Genitive case. But that's beside the point. Karpov plays with phenomenal accuracy and calmly, almost casually, dissects the former world champion and victor of the one of the strongest Soviet championships in the history of the country. He was in inhuman form in the '73-75 cycle, sharing first with Korchnoi in the Interzonal and then proceeding to shut out Polugaevsky +3-0=5, beat Spassky +4-1=6, and get up +3-0=14 at one point against Korchnoi in the final. That he did not play Fischer in '75 is still the greatest loss chess has ever suffered.
Mar-16-17  morfishine: If there are any notes on this game, I'd love to see'm. One doesn't expect Spassky to get shoved around and porked like this, even if it is Karpov


Mar-16-17  RookFile: When black played ...e5, this more or less became the Pirc Defense for black. I realize that's a viable opening for black, but it is somewhat passive, and not really suited to Spassky's style of play.
Mar-17-17  Nova: Nice game from Karpov...continuing to squeeze and poke Black's position until the decisive tactic arises!
Jul-03-18  Howard: In his excellent, and thought-provoking book, Art of Chess Analysis, Timman points out a much flashier win that Karpov had on the 32nd move, though I don't recall the details.

Timman states, however, that Karpov preferred just to play "forceful, prosaic moves" to wrap up the win.

Typical Karpov!!

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <Howard: In his excellent, and thought-provoking book, Art of Chess Analysis, Timman points out a much flashier win that Karpov had on the 32nd move, though I don't recall the details....>

Here's Timman's analysis:

"While we in the press room were occupying ourselves with the spectacular <33.Nxe5>, which we thought nicely decides matters after <33...Qc7!> (Timman) <34.Bf4 Nc5 35.Qc4 fxe5 36.Bh6+ Kxh6 37.Rxf8 Nd7 38.Rh8+ Kg5 39.Qe6! Nf6 40.g3!> (Tal),

or <37...Be7 38.Qf7 Qd6 39.Rh8+ Kg5 40.Re8 Bd8 41 h4+! Kxh4 42.Rxd8 Qxd8 43.Qxg6> (Hort),

Karpov mercilessly made his final, prosaic moves.

Later, our rushed analysis was indeed shown to be faulty. Black wins with <43...Qg5> in the last position (after 43.Qxg6). The right way is <40.Qf2> (instead of 40.Re8) with the crushing threat 41.h4+ Kg4 42.Qg3#. After the forced <40...Qd3>, White wins with <41.h4+ Kg4 42.Rg8 Qxe4 43.Qg3+ Kf5 44.Qxg6+ Kf4 45.Qf7+>."


Premium Chessgames Member

click for larger view

White to move

1) +6.52 (36 ply) <33.Rd1 Nb8 34.Bc5> Qf7 35.Qxf7+ Rxf7 36.Rxd8 Rb7 37.Nd2 Nd7 38.Be3 f5 39.exf5 gxf5 40.Nc4 f4 41.Bg1 Nf6 42.Nxe5 Rxb2 43.Bd4 c5 44.Bxc5 Ra2 45.Bd4 Ne4 46.Nd3+ Kf7 47.Nxf4 Rxa4 48.Rd5 Nd2 49.Rxh5 Nf1+ 50.Kg1 Ng3 51.Rh7+ Ke8 52.Ra7 Nf5 53.Be5 Re4 54.Rxa5 Kd7 55.g4 Ne3 56.Kf2

5.0 minute analysis by Stockfish 9 v01021

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Timman's move <33.Nxe5>:

click for larger view

Black to move

1) +1.40 (31 ply) <33...Qc7 34.Bf4> g5 35.Rd1 Nc5 36.Qf5 gxf4 37.Qg6+ Kh8 38.Nd7 f3+ 39.g3 Ne6 40.Qxh5+ Kg7 41.Qxf3 Ng5 42.Qg4 Rh8 43.Nxf6 Qe5 44.Nh5+ Kg6 45.Nf4+ Kf7 46.h4 Qxe4 47.Rd7+ Ke8 48.Rxd8+ Kxd8 49.Qxg5+ Kc8 50.Qxa5 Rd8 51.b4 Rd7 52.Kh3 Qh1+ 53.Kg4 Qe1 54.Qa8+ Kc7 55.Qa7+ Kc8 56.Qa6+ Kc7 57.b5 Qxc3 58.Qa7+ Kc8 59.Qa8+ Kc7 60.bxc6 Qxc6

2) +3.22 (31 ply) 33...Qe7 34.Qxe7+ Bxe7 35.Nxc6 Bd6+ 36.Kh1 Bc7 37.b4 Re8 38.Bd4 Rxe4 39.b5 Nb8 40.Bxf6+ Kg8 41.b6 Bg3 42.Nxb8 Bxb8 43.Bd4 Re2 44.Kg1 Ra2 45.Rf6 Rxa4 46.Rxg6+ Kf7 47.Rh6 Bg3 48.Kf1 h4 49.b7 Ra2 50.Rb6 Bb8 51.Bf6 Rc2 52.Bxh4 a4 53.Rf6+ Ke8

3) +3.98 (31 ply) 33...Qb8 34.Qd7+ Kg8 35.Bf4 Nc5 36.Qd4 Bc7 37.Nxg6 Bxf4+ 38.Rxf4 Kg7 39.Qxc5 Kxg6 40.e5 Rf7 41.b4 fxe5 42.Qxc6+ Kg7 43.Rxf7+ Kxf7 44.Qe4 axb4 45.cxb4 Kf6 46.a5 Qb5 47.Kg3 Kg5 48.Kf2 Kf6 49.Kf3 Ke7 50.Kg3 Kd6 51.a6 Qc6 52.Qf5 Qc3+ 53.Kh4 Qxb4+ 54.g4 Qb8 55.gxh5 Qd8+ 56.Kg4 Kc5 57.h6 Qe7 58.h7 Qg7+ 59.Kh5 Kb5

6.0 minute analysis by Stockfish 9 v010218

= = =

So acc. to the maschine Karpov's move was way better than Timman's tactical strike.

Jul-05-18  ZonszeinP: This game is one of my favorites ever.
Yet i find the Fischer-Olafson game quoted by <keypusher> on page 1 perhaps even more beautiful
Jul-05-18  RookFile: Spassky had been previously sucessful with this opening against Karpov. Therefore, he should have chosen a different one. That's the way Fischer did it. Always be a moving target, don't play into the opponent's prep.
Jul-05-18  ewan14: When he played Spassky in 1972 certainly
;no Grunfeld Defence ( 2 losses to Spassky and one to Petrosian ) and no Kings Indians
Jul-06-18  RookFile: Right. You can be sure Spassky was well prepared for both of those choices.
Premium Chessgames Member
  malt: Good game, me thinks 35...R:d8 36.Be7
Premium Chessgames Member
  harrylime: Boris was not into this match....

A Good Boris v A Good Karpov

Boris wins

Nov-20-18  Mini Morphy: Beautiful end!
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: great pun!
Apr-09-19  Everett: <30.Ng5> looks quite awkward to meet.

<30.Ng5 fxg5 31.Rxf8 Kxf8 32.Qe6> looks pretty rough, with Rf2 or Rd2 coming.

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