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Enrico Paoli vs Vasily Smyslov
Venice 1950  ·  Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation (B90)  ·  0-1
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sac: 32...Rxc2 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Patriot: Great puzzle! After a moment of searching, the only move that stood out as having winning chances was 32...Rxc2. I tried to analyze this within several minutes and (of course) missed a lot of possibilities. This puzzle takes a lot more time than that. But there was at least one hole in my logic within the main line since I didn't even consider 34.Kf2 as a possibility. Maybe I thought the queen was still on that square.

Perhaps one thing is true though, regarding how much calculation is really necessary if I were faced with this position as black during a game. After 32...Rxc2, the critical variations seem to be 33.Qxc2 and 33.Rxe5. At least that's what I thought, but <Jimfromprovidence> points out another "CV" (33.Qf5). It is critical since the knight is really what's threatened and after 33...Qxf5 34.exf5 both knights are hanging. (Jim, great post! :-)) <agb2002> shows 33.Qa7 and 33.Qb6, counter-attacking on b7, as possible CV's plus some removal of the guard tricks that I noticed.

Perhaps during a game the only CV's that need to be examined are Qxc2, Rxe5, Qf5, Qe3, Qf4, Qxh4, Qa7, and Qb6. Qe3, Qf4, and Qxh4 can be quickly dismissed since Rxg2+ loses the queen. All other possibilities seem to drop (at least) a pawn for nothing.

Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Marmot PFL: I found 32...Rxc2 and saw that 33 Qxc2 Nf3+ 34 Kh1 Qg3 and 34 kf2 Qg3+ then Nd4+ were winning. Also hopeless is 33 Rxe5 Qxe5 34 Qxc2 Qxa1. As with many puzzles I didn't put the pieces together at first, went out to get a haircut, came back and found it very quickly.
Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Marmot PFL: I also missed the 33 Qf5 defense, although it isn't too hard to refute. 33...Qxf5 34 ef5 Nf3+ 35 Kh1 Nf4 is maybe the simplest.
Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Patriot: <Marmot PFL> <I also missed the 33 Qf5 defense, although it isn't too hard to refute. 33...Qxf5 34 ef5 Nf3+ 35 Kh1 Nf4 is maybe the simplest> Good point in light of 36.Nxf4?? Rh2#! But I do think 33.Qf5 is at least critical to consider by the "3-ply rule". That is, 33.Qf5 Qxf5 34.exf5 looks unsafe for black on the surface so it "could" refute 32...Rxc2. It only proves that 33.Qf5 is a good move to look at further so it stays on the candidate move list.
Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Nice problem!

Black wins the queen by a fork after...35 Ke2 Nfd4+ 36 Rxd4 Nxd4+

Or by discovered attack after 35 Ke3 Ne1+

A choice :a fork on two pieces by one or two pieces by two.

Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: The g3 sic far-thine wheeled out on occassion like your grandmama milkshake recipe wethered over time.
Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: H4 is the punt sprouting combo shots round rxc2 sets up the stallions entrance I deliver qc2 nf3 kf2 qg3 with unstoppable aroma in it kh1 avoids all the nonsense course hang your coat in aslice n dice uniform door rc2 deflect her majesty arrowing route 1 to the king harp strike 43...qg3+ please. Mint
Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  David2009: E Paoli vs Smyslov, 1950 Black 32...?

32...Rxc2 GOOT! seeing 33.Qxc2 Nf3+ 34.Kf2 Qg3+ 35.Ke2 or Ke3 Nd4+ wins Q+P for R+N. 34.Kh1 Qg3 is worse for White (mate on h2 or g1 is forced). Time to check:
====
I got the game continuation. Better for White is 33.Rxe5 Qxe5 34.Qxc2 Qxa1 keeping losses to an exchange and a Pawn but without changing the inevitable result. Here's the puzzle position colours reversed:


click for larger view

E Paoli vs Smyslov 1950, 32...? colours reversed with a link to Crafty End Game Trainer for interactive winning practice if required: http://www.chessvideos.tv/endgame-t... You are white, drag and drop the move you want to make.

Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: <Patriot:
...
Perhaps one thing is true though, regarding how much calculation is really necessary if I were faced with this position as black during a game. After 32...Rxc2, the critical variations seem to be 33.Qxc2 and 33.Rxe5. At least that's what I thought, but <Jimfromprovidence> points out another "CV" (33.Qf5). It is critical since the knight is really what's threatened and after 33...Qxf5 34.exf5 both knights are hanging. (Jim, great post! :-)) <agb2002> shows 33.Qa7 and 33.Qb6, counter-attacking on b7, as possible CV's plus some removal of the guard tricks that I noticed.

Perhaps during a game the only CV's that need to be examined are Qxc2, Rxe5, Qf5, Qe3, Qf4, Qxh4, Qa7, and Qb6. Qe3, Qf4, and Qxh4 can be quickly dismissed since Rxg2+ loses the queen. All other possibilities seem to drop (at least) a pawn for nothing.>

One should have a quick a look at any reasonable answer at least but this is often problematic. For example, I missed Jim's 33.Qf5 because most squares on the f-file are tabu for the white queen and then unconsciously concluded that all the squares on the f-file beyond the second rank were tabu. Probably, this is due to some lack of discipline in my thoughts.

Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: Sometimes missing a reply is not a problem if one is sufficiently aware of the tactical motifs of the position: in the case of the 'surprising' 33.Qf5 Black wins with 33... Nf4 (threatening 34... Rxg2+) 34.Qxg5 (34.Qxf4 Rxg2+) 34... Nxh3+ (knight fork) 35.Kh2 (35.Kh1 Nf2+ 36.Kg1(h2) Nf3#, perhaps the only new motif) 35... Nxg5 with two pawns of advantage (36.Rxe5 Nf3+, yet another fork).
Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Patriot: <agb2002> Thanks for your response. Your statement, <Sometimes missing a reply is not a problem if one is sufficiently aware of the tactical motifs of the position>, may be especially true with low time. That can sometimes get me in trouble though.

I was really curious why you analyzed 33.Be2 in-depth. And I'm not being critical in any way because I hold a very high regard to your analytical skills. Just from a critical variation standpoint, it doesn't seem critical at all since it seems to give up a pawn for nothing. For example, it temporarily defends the queen but doesn't seem to do anything else. If black's pieces were hanging or if white was generating counter-play in some way I would understand why black would be concerned with this move. Otherwise I would think "Be2 and thanks for the pawn!" I'm just asking for your expert opinion on this because it could very well be that I'm missing the point!

Thanks for your input!

Aug-25-11  solskytz: Well, losing the pawn isn't equal to losing the game. Even if it does result in a "lost position" it isn't always really lost in practice, as there may still be many obstacles to mount...

when you are in mortal danger and find a variation that only costs you a pawn, my advice - go for it!

Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Patriot: <solskytz> I completely agree. But I'm looking at it strictly from a calculation standpoint for black as to what should be analyzed. If white drops a pawn with no counter-play then is there a practical reason for black to analyze it? That's the main point. But I do think it's a completely viable candidate for white to consider if nothing else pans out. It's just that I don't think black needs to be concerned there. But it could be that I'm wrong, which is why I asked the question.
Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: <sevenseaman> Great Verse! I detect Tagore in there somewhere

<scormus> Great to have you back! How was Easter Island?

<Once> Priceless

<jimfromprovidence> Brilliant, in the lines of Alekhine

Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: <Patriot> Great work on today's POTD (8/25). I also looked at <33.Be2> hoping to shore-up <f3> for white, but after <33...Rc1+> 34.Rxc1 Qxc1+ I abandoned it
Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: <Patriot:
...
I was really curious why you analyzed 33.Be2 in-depth. And I'm not being critical in any way because I hold a very high regard to your analytical skills. Just from a critical variation standpoint, it doesn't seem critical at all since it seems to give up a pawn for nothing. For example, it temporarily defends the queen but doesn't seem to do anything else. If black's pieces were hanging or if white was generating counter-play in some way I would understand why black would be concerned with this move. Otherwise I would think "Be2 and thanks for the pawn!">

You're right. However, I found several reasons to pay attention to 33.Be2:

1. To make sure that White cannot build a fortress or counterplay in some unexpected way.

2. To train my tactical vision: this is a puzzle, not a game, so I can expend (or invest!) as much time as I want. The point is to get used to quite deep analysis, which in a real game could result in a greater probability of out-calculating the opponent.

3. As a challenge: "Find the most efficient way of crushing the opponent in this position".

There are other reasons, some related to how a better thinking in chess seems to promote a better thinking in (applied) maths, but I will put them aside at the moment.

<I'm just asking for your expert opinion on this because it could very well be that I'm missing the point!

Thanks for your input!>

Thanks to you for your confidence in my opinion but bear in mind that I'm not even a candidate master!

Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Patriot: <agb2002> You would easily out-calculate me, I'm sure. What you said makes perfect sense.

We are at different stages of chess development. You're around master level (or close!) so you analyze to improve tactical vision, technique, etc. I'm not even at the "expert" level so I must first practice the technique of calculation! My main concern is that if I used your approach at this point, it would help in the ways you point out but I would probably end up over-calculating during a game which would put me in time trouble.

Thanks again!

Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Patriot: <morfishine> Thanks! Sorry I haven't responded yet to your replies but will do so soon.
Aug-25-11  BOSTER: <Jim> <line after 32...Rxc2 33.Qf5 Nf4 34.Qxg5 Nxh3+ 35.Kh2 Nxg5 36. Rxe5 Nf3+ 37. Kh1 Nxe5>. What is wrong with 35.Kh1 Nxg5 36.Rxe5 if 36..Rf3 (no check!) Rf5 and white is better? It looks like you sometimes hypnotize somebody. Is 32..Rxc2 winning?
Aug-25-11  dufferps: I guess when you're playing Smyslov, you resign after 34. ... Qg3+ if not sooner. But for me the game is so far from over, I would have to continue at least until black erases my material advantage.

The continuation(s) I tried did seem to result in black picking off pieces until he had an obvious advantage, but I would surely have loved to see how 2 GM's did it.

Just counting the next six moves, I wonder how different their continuation would be from mine: 35.Ke2 Ng1+, 36.Kd1 Qf3+, 37.Be2 Qxg1,
38.Bd3 Qf3+, 39.Be2 Qxh, 40.Rd3 Qg2

Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Patriot: <dufferps> After 35.Ke2 Nd4+ 36.Rxd4 Nd4+ is decisive. And 35.Ke3 Ne1+ wins the queen.
Aug-25-11  alachabre: After a very quick assessment of the obvious Nf3+, I find I really like the idea of the deflection sacrifice:

32. ... Rxc2
33. Qxc2 Qg3
34. Rxe5, so the queen move is too early

33. ... Nf3+
34. Kh8? Qg3, and the only defense to mate on h2 or g1 is the bizarre looking

35. Qc7 Qxh3+ and mate next.

34. Kf7 Qg3+
35. Ke3 Ne1+ nabs the queen,

35. Ke2 Ned4+
36. Rxd4 Nxd4+ and again the queen falls.

33. Rxe5 Qxe5
34. Qxc2 Qxa1 with significant advantage.

33. Qf5 Nf4
34. Qxg5 Nf3+
35. Kh1 Nxh3 threatens mate on f2, but

36. Qxh4 Nxh4
37. Nxh4 and White is actually ahead here, so

34. ... Nxh3+
35. Kh1? Nf2+!
36. Kg1 Nf3#

The 35th move for White appears obvious, but is suicidal. Instead

35. Kh2 Nf3+?
36. Kxh3

35. ... Nxg5
36. Rxe5 Nf3+

A lot more analysis can be done in this position, but Black maintains a clear advantage with proper play. Is there a better 33rd move for White? Maybe, but not tonight :-)

Aug-25-11  stst: have to divert the Q's defense:
32.... RxP
33.QxP Nf3+
34.Kh1 Qg3 threatens Qh2# and W has no adequate defense. IF 34.Kf2 Qg3+
35.Ke2 Nd4+ forks Q, and
if then 36.RxN NxR, W loses the exchange.
see how the male tenor Smyslov gave his accents...
Aug-25-11  stst: it's really a personal taste of this cake -- some say a great puzzle, but it's easier for me than yesterday's -- I could be too tired and getting late yesterday; whilst I saw this one in every clarity just by eye-balling... anyway, I hit the tenor's note!!
Aug-25-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Patriot: <BOSTER> <<Jim> <line after 32...Rxc2 33.Qf5 Nf4 34.Qxg5 Nxh3+ 35.Kh2 Nxg5 36. Rxe5 Nf3+ 37. Kh1 Nxe5>. What is wrong with 35.Kh1 Nxg5 36.Rxe5 if 36..Rf3 (no check!) Rf5 and white is better? It looks like you sometimes hypnotize somebody. Is 32..Rxc2 winning?>

I wondered the same thing and it took a moment to see that 35.Kh1 Nf2+ 36.Kh2/Kg1 Nf3#!

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