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Paul Keres vs Luben S Popov
FRG-ch International (1973), Dortmund FRG, rd 6, May-23
Sicilian Defense: Kan. Knight Variation (B43)  ·  0-1


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Kibitzer's Corner
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Mar-22-08  Jason Frost: Woot I got one after missing the last two. <benjinathan> the purpose of the check is that if black just plays 37. ...NC4 white can answer 38. QC6!! and save the exchange
Mar-22-08  MostlyAverageJoe: <Jason Frost> Qc6 (with the idea of attacking the rook) does not cut it. Nxd6 wins the exchange and protects the rook.
Mar-22-08  Jason Frost: Hmmm thought 38. Qd4 was bad for some reason but I guess after 38. ...Qa8 Rd5 black dosen't seem to have anything
Mar-22-08  Jason Frost: Ah, woops
Mar-22-08  Lightboxes: I think black plays 37...Qa8+ so that once the exchange occurs, black can also take the knight. 39...Nxd6 40.Qxd6,Rd8 41...Rxd1+
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: There are a lot of candidates here, but just like with the presidential election most of them fade away after close examination.

My choice was 34...e3. White will lose the ♗ on g2 if he takes the ♙, so he plays 35. Bxc6. Then comes 35...Qa1+ 36. Rd1 (36. Nd1 is worse) Qxd1+! 37. Nxd1 e2. White has to stop the ♙ from promoting. The only way seems to be 38. Qe3. But then black has 37...Nf3+, winning the ♕: 38. Bxf3 Rxe3 39. Bxe2 Rxe2, and black has won the exchange the hard way.

Mar-22-08  zooter: Nice,

I saw that pretty much

34...Qa1+ 35.Nd1 e3 36.fxe3 Bxg2 37.Kxg2 is pretty much forced, but missed

37...Qa8+ protecting the rook and then 38...Nc4 forking the queen and rook...Off course after move 37. I pretty much couldn't see that the fork by Nc4 is still available

Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: I just noticed that my line is even better than I thought: After <34...e3 35. Bxc6 Qa1+ 36. Rd1 Qxd1+! 37. Nxd1 e2 38. Qe3>, black has 38...exd1=Q+.
Mar-22-08  beginner64: For completeness sake, it is not just about the exchange.

39. Qd4 Nxd6
40. Qxd6 Rd8 also gets the knight on d1, leaving black a full rook ahead, and mate only a few moves away.

Mar-22-08  zooter: Can somebody explain to me what happens after

34...Qa1+ 35.Nd1 e3 36.Bxc6 e2 37.Bxe8 e1=Q+ (I'm pretty much assuming this is also correct play by both sides).

I understand that black has 2 queens but isn't Q+Q = Q+R+B+N? Any lines after this?

Mar-22-08  MostlyAverageJoe: <zooter> You missed black N when counting the pieces. The position after e1=Q+ is:

click for larger view

Too late for me to think. Hiarcs makes very slow progress here, and after 17 plies says:

1. (-6.21) 38. Kg2 Qa8 39. Bc6 Nxc6 40. Kh2 Nb8 ...

2. (-6.57) 38. Kh2 Qf1 39. Bxf7 Kh7 40. Bg6 Nxg6 ..

Mar-22-08  MostlyAverageJoe: <al wazir> In your line, 38.Bxe8 draws (38...exd1=Q+ 39.Kg2):

click for larger view

Mar-22-08  zooter: unrelated, but how do I use Winboard with SPike or other chess engines? Any good tutorials?
Mar-22-08  Shika: Also, the reason that the white queen cannot capture the pawn at e3 (36. Qxe3) is because this looses the queen to the revealed attack, 36. ... Nf3+.
Mar-22-08  Steve Case: I would have played Qa1+ too, and I saw a lot of the stuff that happened especially forking the Queen & Rook, but let's just say if it were my game I would have screwed it up.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <Shika: Also, the reason that the white queen cannot capture the pawn at e3 (36. Qxe3) is because this looses the queen to the revealed attack, 36. ... Nf3+.>

Or 36...Bxg2, with the idea of 37.Kxg2 Qa8+ followed by Nc4 similar to the game (with Black winning a whole rook rather than an exchange, as was already pointed out); <dzechiel>'s immediate 36...Nc4 doesn't work, again because of 37.Qd4!

Btw, in case of 35.Bf1 (instead of Nd1) of course White can win the exchange with 35...Qxb2 36.Rxc6 Nxc6 37.Qxc6, but 35....e3! with the threats of e2 and Nf3+ is strongest here as well; as it is in case of 35.Kh2.

Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: Saturday (Very Difficult): Black to play and win.

Material: Even. Black has a battery Qa8 and Bc6 on the a8-h1 diagonal, with Qa8 also having an open a-file and able to reach a1, to invade the 1-st rank. The Pe4 obscures the White Bg2 from the battery. The White K-side has a weak light-square complex, and Ne5 can leap to a light K-side square. Moreover, Re8 backs Pe5. The White Nb2 must also protect c4 against Ne5 forking Qb6 and Rd6. Despite initial appearances, therefore, the Black position is coordinated and active, in great contrast to White. With such positional superiority, Black should have something decisive. The general principle of opening lines in a superior position suggests the candidate 34…e3.

<YouRang> pointed out that even faulty “micro-combinations” can contribute to something greater, so note

34…Qa1+ 35.Nd1 [Rd1 Qxg2],

which displaces Nb2, burdens Rd6, and cuts Rd6 off from defense of the 1-st rank.

Candidates (34...): e3, Qa1

Toga II 1.3.1 agrees with Keres and disagrees with me :>{

I went for 34…e3, following the beginning of a line Toga gives as winning after <36.Nd1>

34…e3 35.Bxc6 Qa1+ <36.Nd1> e2 37.Bxe8 e1Q+ 38.Kh2 Qf1 39.Bxf7+

I overlooked that interposition with <36.Rd1> leads to a draw by perpetual check:

34…e3 35.Bxc6 Qa1+ <36.Rd1> Qxd1+ 37.Nxd1 e2 38.Bxe8 exd1Q+ 39.Kg2 Qd5+ 40.Kf1 Qd1+

I do not wish to add to the kibitzing noise if I have nothing to contribute, so I have deleted my faulty analysis before posting.

Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: <<dzechiel> wrote: <MostlyAverageJoe: <benjinathan: What is the purpose of the check on turn 37?>

Playing 37...Nc4 allows white to wiggle out: 38.Qd4>

Nuts. I overlooked this refinement. Close, but no cigar.>

Your failure looks pretty good to me, <dzechiel>. Over the board, you would have had 3 whole moves to reconsider the error of your ways.

Mar-22-08  012: Friday puzzle <28. ?> Mar-21-08 G Sigurjonsson vs L Ogaard, 1978
Mar-22-08  benjinathan: <MostlyAverageJoe> thanks!
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: <MAJ: In your line, 38.Bxe8 draws.>

Oops. Thanks, I guess.

Premium Chessgames Member
  DarthStapler: I didn't even understand this puzzle
Mar-22-08  wals: Noting think:- Don't let them know we're out of ammunition, keep firing.

Forward to TPOTD

First thought was 34. ...Qa1+ 35.Bf1. ...Nf3+ 36.Kh1 ...Qxf1# which would be fine except for Rd1 backed up by Nxd1. Nc4 would move Nb2 but lose the attacking knight

Let's try 34 ...Qa1+ 35.Nd1 ...Nc4 forking b6 and d5. or 34. ..Qa1+ 35.Rd1 ...Qxb2 winning a piece

More subtle, 34. ..e4-e3 35.Bxc6 ...Nxc6 36.Rd1 ...e3-e4 (36.f2xe3 ...Qa1+)

go for this one


OMG outsmarted again

Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: For the Saturday March 22, 2008 puzzle solution, Black begins a series of combined tactical operations (primarily involving the pin and the Knight Fork) with the double attack 34...Qa1+!! to force a decisive pin after 35. Nd1.

Then, Black plays the surprise discovered attack follow-up 35...e3!, threatening to win the pinned Knight and gain a second decisive Queen with 36...e2 followed by 37...exd1(Q) .

After the forcing 36. fxe3 Bxg2 37. Kxg2 Qa8+ 38. Kg1, Black has a decisive Knight Fork with 38...Nc4! to win the exchange and the game.

Mar-23-08  malvar: Black to play; (...34)Difficult

Blacks main problem in my perspective seems to be whites rook and whites N moving to d1 to block the Q's check at a1. The movement of e pawn has to come at some point to open the long diagonal for Whites B. Maybe a back rank mate, but Bf1 could also take care of Qa1+?

I accidentally looked at the games continuation so, my analysis won't count for much. Anyway,

My main candidates were:
- e3,
- Qa1+,
- Nf3+

(34.Nc4 looses to 35.NxN, pxN 36. RxB)

N the e pawn seems to be poisoned. The move I found the hardest to predict was 37...Qa8!

Nice combination!

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