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Alexander Kotov vs Mark Taimanov
Zurich Candidates (1953), Zurich SUI, rd 11, Sep-16
English Opening: Anglo-Indian Defense. Mikenas-Carls Variation (A15)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
Mar-14-03  Rookpawn: If Black plays 5...Bxb4, then 6. Qa4+ Nc6 7. Ne5 Be7 8. Nxc6 etc. If 8... Bd7 then 9. Nxd8 Bxa4 Nxb7 etc.
Sep-29-04  clocked: <Rookpawn> 7...Rb8! Is b4 a bluff? Taimanov rejected the pawn in one other game also.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Willem Wallekers: No bluff. White has several ways to regain the pawn if he wants to. For instance 8. Nxc6 bxc6 9. Bxc6+ or 9. Qxa7.
Premium Chessgames Member
  acirce: Yes, he can regain the pawn but what about the position? Bronstein says in his book on the tournament that the pawn can't be taken (Rookpawn's line) but doesn't mention 7..Rb8. Interesting find.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Willem Wallekers: Equal after 8. a3 Bd6 9. Nxc6 bxc6 10. Qxa7 Rb6 (computer analysis). By refusing the pawn Black gets a small minus.
So it is a no risk bluff, if you may call that a bluff.
Sep-29-04  clocked: <Willem Wallekers> 10...Nd7 I wouldn't call that position equal. If black is better right out of the opening then...
Premium Chessgames Member
  Willem Wallekers: Better for black or equal?
Don't ask me. I've got only 1847 and am no guru on position judgment for GM games. Do we all agree that Bronstein was wrong? Also I didn't claim that the pawn couldn't be taken.
Sep-29-04  siggemannen: maybe i'm totally blind but how can you play 7... Rb8 when the knight is there?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Willem Wallekers: not in the game, in the analysis.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Fusilli: Kotov sets up the queen's side so that Taimanov will only have very slow-building counterplay. In the meantime, he puts his pieces on the King's side in all the right places. Strategically brilliant, isn't it?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jonathan Sarfati: The key strategic theme was exploiting Black's ♘a5 that was out of play. White exchanged rooks then attacked the ♔-side, effectively with an extra piece. Black was lost even before the final blunder, an ignominious end for the hapless wandering ♘.
Premium Chessgames Member
  jbennett: I'm doing a series of videos on the Zurich 1953 tournament. For round 11 I selected this game to cover:
Aug-19-16  cwcarlson: 27.Bf4!? is too slow since Nc4 28.dc Qa1+ 29.Kg2 Bc4 is hard to win. Better is 27.Nh6+ gh 28.Bh6 Bh6 29.Qh6 with clear advantage.
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