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Viktor Korchnoi vs Gedeon Barcza
"Working on a Chain Gang" (game of the day Mar-13-2018)
Chigorin Memorial (1966), Sochi URS, rd 4
Kangaroo Defense: Keres Defense. Transpositional Variation (E00)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: It doesn't look like Black had to give up the queen so drastically. But what was she going to able to do?

So much for Gedeon's Strumpet.

Mar-13-18  RookFile: Maybe play like Petrosian and give up the exchange with 33....Rf6? The alternative is to resign, I guess.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Barcza chose seppuku; 33....Rf6 34.Bxf6 gxf6 35.R1g8 with Qh5 to follow also offered no hope of survival.
Mar-13-18  Retireborn: Personally I would have resigned after 29.g5, purely for the aesthetic appeal of a final position with all the pawns still on the board.
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: Awful game by Black. Just pitiful. It appears he is trying to demonstrate what not to do in chess. In this, he is successful: (1) make sure to neglect development (2) make sure to not challenge the center (3) make sure to move some, if not all of your pieces multiple times in the opening (4) Don't worry about the safety of your king (5) give up your weakling Queen for a powerful enemy rook

That about covers it. Did I forget anything?


Premium Chessgames Member
  Breunor: I have to admit I don't get what Black was trying to do; he is at 1.5 by move 10 and totally lost by move 15.

I think what makes it seem so bad though is that black doesn't appear to fight. We see losses from better tactics by opponents, opening blunders etc. But here it seems like black isn't even really trying??

I wonder if he was ill or suffered a personal issue?

Mar-13-18  Retireborn: <Breunor> Off form, I should think; he scored +4=2-9 in this tournament, losing to all the top 7 finishers. Plus he was well over 50 at the time, although he did keep playing until 1977, apparently.
Mar-13-18  njchess: Black is clearly playing for a draw. 7. ... e5 releases all tension in the position and deprives Black of any active pieces. Instead of playing queen side, Black looks to defend and finds himself meandering by move 15. Viktor isn't buying any of the draw tactics and just squeezes and squeezes until Black resigns.
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <Phony Benoni: It doesn't look like Black had to give up the queen so drastically. >

What I gradually realized was how strong the threat of Qh5 was. <perfidious>'s ...Rf6 is better than Barcza's move, but not by much.

<So much for Gedeon's Strumpet.>


As for the other comments, of course this is not one of his better games, but it's in his quiet style. Copied from his player page:

<Harry Golombek once said of Barcza that he "is a most versatile player in the openings. He plays g2-g3 sometimes on the first, sometimes on the second, sometimes on the third, and sometimes not until the fourth move".>

A very fine positional player, sort of an Ulf Andersson type, viz.

G Barcza vs Taimanov, 1950

G Palmason vs G Barcza, 1954

As for his defense in this game, I play the same type stuff, and it works OK. Not saying it's good, but it's good for me.

Mar-13-18  NBZ: I think Black's opening play does have a plan of sorts, only he never gets to execute it. If I had to guess the plan, it is to play Bb4 and Bxc3, and lock up the center with c5 and e5, so that he gets a KID/Old Indian type of position without the hindrance of a bad dark squared bishop. Then he can go for the thematic ...f5 or ..b5 breaks.

This sounds nice in theory. In practice the plan ended up being too slow to actually implement: by the 10th move, White is already preparing f4, whereas Black still needs to play a few more moves (...g6, Ng7) before he can play ...f5. I am guessing that is why he clammed up and played ...f6. What I don't understand is why Black did not try harder to get in his other break ...b5. That still puzzles me.

So not exactly planless play from Black, more like he started with a bad plan and then realized a little too late that there was no way to implement it.

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