Members · Prefs · Collections · Openings · Endgames · Sacrifices · History · Search Kibitzing · Kibitzer's Café · Chessforums · Tournament Index · Players · Kibitzing

register now - it's free!
Boris Spassky vs Mikhail Tal
USSR Championship (1958)  ·  Nimzo-Indian Defense: Saemisch Variation (E26)  ·  0-1
To move:
Last move:

Click Here to play Guess-the-Move
Given 7 times; par: 125 [what's this?]

explore this opening
find similar games 42 more Spassky/Tal games
PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

TIP: You can step through the moves by clicking the and buttons, but it's much easier to simply use the left and right arrow keys on your keyboard.

PGN Viewer:  What is this?
For help with the default chess viewer, please see the Pgn4web Quickstart Guide.

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Oct-10-08  Whitehat1963: Treacherous on both sides. Great game!
Oct-10-08  Jim Bartle: At what move was the adjournment?
Mar-28-09  AlbertoDominguez: The adjournment was after Black's 45th move. 46.Qf4 was sealed.
Premium Chessgames Member
  wwall: In an interview with Leonard Barden, Spassky said this of the game. "The game was adjourned, and I had a good position; but I was very tired from analyzing and went to resume next morning unshaven. On this occasion I had analyzed incessantly and came to the board looking very disheveled and fatigued. Then I was like a stubborn mule. I remember that Tal offered me a draw, but I refused. Then I felt my strength ebb away, and I lost the thread of the game. My position deteriorated; I proposed a draw, but Tal refused. When I resigned, there was a thunder of applause, but I was in a daze and hardly understood what was happening. After this game I went on the street and cried like a child. I remembered that in 1951 when I lost to Smyslov in his clock simultaneous was the last time I cried, and I promised myself then never to cry again; but after losing to Tal I couldn't keep my word."
Dec-20-09  zanshin: At deeper plies, Rybka evaluates <57.Qb8> higher:

click for larger view

[+5.72] d=15 57.Qb8 (0:22.09) 38702kN
[+0.60] d=13 57.Rc8 Ra6 58.Qe5 Qe6 59.Rc7 Kd8 60.Qxe6 fxe6 61.Rg7 Ra2 62.Kg3 Ra4 63.Rxg6 Ke7 64.Kf4 Kf7 65.Rh6 (0:00.39) 703kN ...

[+0.34] d=5 57.g3 Qc7 (0:00.00) 3kN

Premium Chessgames Member
  sevenseaman: Who'd think Tal to work so hard for a win!
Nov-10-10  HeMateMe: funny, Tal wins by trapping his own King!
Jul-31-11  DrMAL: In his book, Tal mentions winning this last round game would give him clear first place, while a win for Spassky would make certain he qualified for the upcoming Interzonal. This explains the incessant battling of clearly drawn positions.

Tal gave 55...h5! an exclamation mark stating, "The attempt to give perpetual would be unsuccessful" and apparently Spassky's notes claimed a win with 58.g4! In reality, 55...h5?? was a totally losing move. They both missed 57.Qb8! Then after 57.Rc8? Rd6?? losing again Spassky started with the strongest move 58.Qf8+! but then played 59.Re8? for a draw again (missed 59.Qh8+ or 59.g4 for a quick win either way).

After several more moves of again pounding on a draw, Spassky blundered with 67.g3?? (instead of 67.g4 the only move) Tal missed 67...Qa6! playing 67...Rg1? for continued draw.

But then after 69.Rc2? yet another mistake (this time merely losing a pawn not the game), Spassky moved 70.Rf2?? and this last blunder (actually, forced mate) was finally punished. Comedy of errors mostly unnoticed back then, oh the drama of such an important game for both!

Jul-31-11  cwcarlson: After 65.Qd8 White is not losing.
Feb-25-12  AlphaMale: A bespectacled and bowtied Spassky before the start of this fateful game:

Pictures and game commmentary here:

By 1960, Spassky cut a more familiar figure:

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: It's an all new ending when the queens are born again on the board.
Oct-30-12  wildrookie: f5 was like the last nail to the White's coffin.
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: One of those games that goes Opening - Middlegame - Endgame then back to Middlegame.
Oct-11-14  thulium: What's wrong with 61.....RxR?
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <thulium> 61...Rxe8?? 62.Qg5+ Ke6 63.Qe5#.
Jan-03-15  Howard: The book Tal: Magic of Youth claims that 58.Qb8! would have won quicker, and that Kasparov's MGP overlooks that.

Comments ?

Jan-03-15  RookFile: Must be a typo. I'm looking at the position, 58. Qb8 is a not a legal move.

Position after 57....Rd6:

click for larger view

Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: <RookFile> And that is why your nickname is not "The Magician". =))

Only Tal have the ability to play that queen move.

Jan-16-15  Howard: Aarrrrrrgh !!!

I meant that 57.Qb8 would have won quicker---not on the 58th move though. My mistake !

Not only that, 58.Qe5+ (and THAT move is legal !) would also have been a quicker win.

For everyone's information, both of these improvements appear in the excellent book Tal: Magic of Youth. That book just came out a few months ago, and it's the first of three projected volumes.

Anyone out there who knows Uncle Rybka or Aunt Stockfish, care to comment on these alternatives ?

Jun-11-15  poorthylacine: Very good and nice variant of offramp, showing that the win was still possible at the 59th move!
Jun-11-15  Howard: Just where is this analysis by Offramp ?!
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: <Howard: Just where is this analysis by Offramp ?!>

You won't read this because I'm on your ignore list.

Jun-13-15  Howard: If I may please ask, why is that ? There is no one on my "ignore" list.
Jun-13-15  beatgiant: <Howard>
Have you tried looking at Page 1 of the kibitzing?
Jun-15-15  Howard: Yes, I just did ! Perhaps we could have more detailed proof, however.
Jump to page #    (enter # from 1 to 3)
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
NOTE: You need to pick a username and password to post a reply. Getting your account takes less than a minute, totally anonymous, and 100% free--plus, it entitles you to features otherwise unavailable. Pick your username now and join the chessgames community!
If you already have an account, you should login now.
Please observe our posting guidelines:
  1. No obscene, racist, sexist, or profane language.
  2. No spamming, advertising, or duplicating posts.
  3. No personal attacks against other members.
  4. Nothing in violation of United States law.
  5. Don't post personal information of members.
Blow the Whistle See something that violates our rules? Blow the whistle and inform an administrator.

NOTE: Keep all discussion on the topic of this page. This forum is for this specific game and nothing else. If you want to discuss chess in general, or this site, you might try the Kibitzer's Café.
Messages posted by Chessgames members do not necessarily represent the views of, its employees, or sponsors.
Spot an error? Please submit a correction slip and help us eliminate database mistakes!
This game is type: CLASSICAL (Disagree? Please submit a correction slip.)

Featured in the Following Game Collections [what is this?]
remembering Tal
by Yopo
PinkZebra's favorite games
by PinkZebra
Complex favorites
by Whitehat1963
Hinchliffe's favorite games
by Hinchliffe
The Life and Games of Mikhail Tal
by newfiex
from tmhasfun's favorite Nimzo-Indian games by tmhasfun
musicmanTRIBALx's favorite games
by musicmanTRIBALx
Riga 1958 USSR Championship- clinches 1st in last round
from Mikhail Tal: Chess Biography by jessicafischerqueen
Riga ch-SU 1958
from Mikhail Tal: Selected Games by wanabe2000
woodenbishop's favorite games #3
by woodenbishop
Game 376
from Guess-the-Move Chess: 1940-1959 (Part 2) by Anatoly21
USSR Championship 1958
by suenteus po 147
Calculate like a Grandmaster
by Friedeggsof
25th USSR Championship 1958
from Tal's Tournament and Matches 1949-1973 by jessicafischerqueen
Tal king of chess
ersahin's favorite games
by ersahin
Soviet games
by pim
complex endgame
from fav Tal & Topalov games by guoduke
Tal vs the World Champions Decisive Games
by visayanbraindoctor
amusing endgame after both sides promote
from champs vs champs by kevin86
plus 16 more collections (not shown)

home | about | login | logout | F.A.Q. | your profile | preferences | Premium Membership | Kibitzer's Café | Biographer's Bistro | new kibitzing | chessforums | Tournament Index | Player Directory | World Chess Championships | Opening Explorer | Guess the Move | Game Collections | ChessBookie Game | Chessgames Challenge | Store | privacy notice | advertising | contact us
Copyright 2001-2015, Chessgames Services LLC
Web design & database development by 20/20 Technologies