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Vladislav Ivanovich Tkachiev vs William Nicholas Watson
17th Lloyds Bank Masters Open (1993), London ENG, rd 7, Aug-27
Sicilian Defense: Canal Attack. Main Line (B52)  ·  1-0
ANALYSIS [x]

FEN COPIED

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 4 OF 4 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Dec-08-07  TrueBlue: it's a typical Saturday. You have to find the first move and see the idea. Nobody expects you to find all variations, unless you want to spend the WHOLE Saturday on the puzzle :)
Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: <Jimfromprovidence: How can anybody say that they “saw” this combination to the end after 20 Nd5?>

I believe that the terminal queen sac is required to ensure that black comes out with a losing position in all lines from the Nd5 sac (computer analysis of a rook lift without the queen sac, anyone?). In that sense, the Nd5 sac must be seen to that particular "end". I am not sure if the queen sac is necessary to win, but I am sure it is sufficient :)

In practice, of course, not every line needs to be calculated in detail to ensure a move is good. For example, in my opinion, exact calculation is unnecessary to see that in the line 23... Kf1 White had enough compensation for the minor piece (although I recognize that the aim of the CG puzzles is to improve one's exact calculation). In the line you suggest, advantage accrued to White through the Nd5 sac and exact calculation is unnecessary.

If the point of your post is to defend the subtlety and breadth of dzechiel's analyses, however, who am I to argue?

Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  fm avari viraf: It's one of those standard sacrifices on d5 to open up the vital lines as well as the control of the central squares, hence, it's not that difficult to predict the move but definitely,it's hard to see the Queen sac at h7 immediately. Pershaps, a little more time needed to find the rest of the combination.
Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  zenpharaohs: I get

20 Nd5 exd5
21 exd5 Qc7
22 Bxf6 ...

white wins a pawn; because

22 ... gxf6??
23 Rg3

and black's pants are on fire.

So

22 ... Re8
23 Rh3 g6, etc.

White has his pawn and the initiative.

Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  zenpharaohs: Question about queen sacs - are you guys assuming that black plays gxf6??

Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  zenpharaohs: "Jimfromprovidence: 20 Nd5 was all about winning a pawn and good position,, nothing more, nothing less."

I agree. The last few puzzles seem to have been like this - big fireworks, but only if you go in the wrong line. I have started to think that these puzzles are not about finding mates or big material, but about finding the winning line, and not necessarily anything else.

Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: For today's puzzle solution, the attacking sham sacrifice 20. Nd5!! gives up a piece for a pawn to shatter Black's Kingside pawns and decisively weaken his castled position.

The play in the game through the 22nd move appear to be forced, as does the decisive combination after 23...Kh8 24. Qxh7+! . Note how the threat of a Knight Fork forces this continuation.

The possibility 23...Kf8 24. Qxh7 Re8!? puts up a bit more resistance, as noted by <al wazir>. However, the lines provided by <BalaKKa> are enough to convince me White wins in all variations after the initial 20. Nd5!! pseudo sacrifice.

Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: I am speechless.
Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: If White misses the queen sac and plays a "second-best" move, e.g., 24. Rd4 or Rh3, Black replies ...24. f5, preparing ...25. Ne4. It is then no longer clear to me that White is winning at all. I would be very curious to know the computer analysis of the ensuing positions.

While I agree with other posts that the puzzle is just about winning a pawn with a good position, the line with the queen sac is probably needed to justify playing Nd5 as a sound move. Otherwise, without the queen sac, White might win a pawn in one (quiet) line, but lose in a line where Black is willing to undertake a tenacious defense in a difficult position.

Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Nothing special: Standard Nd5 sac, followed by a 'destroying exchange' of f6 and a simple ♕sac do get a ♖♖# on the edge. :D
Dec-08-07  stukkenjager: winning a pawn with good position??
Tkachiev knows better, 20.Nd5! wins.
a sample line: 20... exd5 21.exd5 ♕d7 22.♗xf6 ♖e8 23.♖g3 g6 24.♗a1 ♕e7 25.♖e3 ♕f8 26.♕c3! f6 27.♖de1 b6 28.g4 ♖e5 29.f4 ♖xe3 30.♖xe3 ♖e8 31.b4 ♘d7 32.♖e6 ♕f7 33.♕e3 <score 4.50>

Dec-08-07  whitebeach: <Jimfromprovidence: I played this position for another seven moves after 22.. Re8 and white was still only up a pawn.

22...Re8 23.Rg3 g6 24.Ba1 Qe7 25.Re3 Qf8 26.Rde1 Rxe3 27.Rxe3 Re8 28.Qe2 Rxe3 29.Qxe3 Qd8.

20 Nd5 was all about winning a pawn and good position,, nothing more, nothing less.>

I agree. 20. Nd5 was a fine move, but as you say, it was only the later mistake 22 . . . gf6 that made the spectacular ending possible, so the problem is a bit problematic. I would only add that in the line you give, after 22 . . . Re8 23. Rg3 g6 24. Ba1 Qe7 25. Re3 Qf8 26. Rde1 Rxe3 27. Rxe3 Re8, instead of 28. Qe2 white can play more forcefully with 28. Qc3, virtually compelling 28 . . . f6, when after 29. Qxf6 Qxf6 30. Rxe8+ Kf7 31. Bxf6 Kxe8 (or 30 . . . Qf8 31. Rxf8+ Kxf8) 32. b4, and if now 32 . . . Nxa4 33. Bd4, black is still only a pawn down but is dead lost.

Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: <stukkenjager: winning a pawn with good position?? Tkachiev knows better, 20.Nd5! wins.>

Although the sound pawn extra is enough to win, the game line permitted a forced mate. As you show, with proper play there is no immediate win. Black could have put up resistance in a losing position for a long time, and most players prefer putting up resistance to being mated immediately.

Suicide is rarely a good defense.

Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: <whitebeach: 20. Nd5 was a fine move, but as you say, it was only the later mistake 22 . . . gf6 that made the spectacular ending possible>

Can anyone tell me the status of the moves 24. Rd4 or Rh3 with 24... f5, preparing 25... Ne4? The "spectacular ending" with Qxh7 could be essential to today's puzzle and not a bad detour, because if either 24. Rd4 or Rh3 leads to a won position for Black, then without Qxh7, the move 22...gxf6 would be winning and no mistake at all.

Dec-08-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: <whitebeach> <I would only add that in the line you give, after 22 . . . Re8 23. Rg3 g6 24. Ba1 Qe7 25. Re3 Qf8 26. Rde1 Rxe3 27. Rxe3 Re8, instead of 28. Qe2 white can play more forcefully with 28. Qc3, virtually compelling 28 . . . f6, when after 29. Qxf6 Qxf6 30. Rxe8+ Kf7 31. Bxf6 Kxe8 (or 30 . . . Qf8 31. Rxf8+ Kxf8) 32. b4, and if now 32 . . . Nxa4 33. Bd4, black is still only a pawn down but is dead lost.>

The line I offered was representative, just to indicate that there was a lot of playing left to be done.

I believe 20 Nd5 was a fine move, and probably the best move for white. I object to those (sanctimonious) posts today that stated that 20 Nd5 and the game continuation (particularly move 22 for black leading to the queen sacrifice) were easily predictable.

That way of thinking is dead wrong because black's 22nd move was not forced.

Also, <stukkenjagger> maintains in his continuation that white could know (beginning with 20 Nd5) the next 14 middle game moves in advance. I find that difficult to believe. Even so, I played out this position a couple of times and I didn’t find any big breakthrough for white.

Maybe I am missing something.

Dec-08-07  triangulation: I can't believe I saw all that.5/6 for me this week which is unprecedented. but the only problem for me is what if black dosen't take the bishop.white looks better but its not a sure easy win.
Dec-08-07  znprdx: 20.Nd5 and follow the crumbs home...not capturing the knight (which threatens at e7, presents Black with considerable difficulties) Capturing the knight leads to Bxf6[b]

Got the key move ...but Qxh7!! Whodah-Thunk-It...Be-yooo-ti-full... oh no, spoilers: it isn't forced?

Oh well no more time for this: 5am Carlsen-Kamsky Round 6 semifinals at the World Cup

Dec-08-07  whitebeach: <Jimfromprovidence: The line I offered was representative, just to indicate that there was a lot of playing left to be done.>

Clearly.

<I believe 20 Nd5 was a fine move, and probably the best move for white. I object to those (sanctimonious) posts today that stated that 20 Nd5 and the game continuation (particularly move 22 for black leading to the queen sacrifice) were easily predictable.>

Again I agree. Anyone who claims to have foreseen all the ramifications of this position, particularly in over-the-board conditions (or at least not getting his insights from a computer) is wasting his time here and should be tuning up for the next world championship cycle. Or maybe doesn't even need to tune up.

Dec-09-07  MostlyAverageJoe: <whitebeach> & <Jimfromprovidence> I totally agree with you.

One cannot claim to have solved the puzzle just because of seeing the continuation played in the game, since in that line black committed TWO serious blunders.

The first one was accepting the bishop sac, 22..gxf6 (the correct response is 22...Re8, with lots of play and great many variants).

The second one was 23...Kh8, allowing a forced mate in 6 (the correct move was 23...Kf8, also losing, but not as fast).

Furthermore, 20...e5 is not that much worse than 20...exd5, and needs to be analyzed to have any claims.

Note that CG does not screen puzzles for big blunders by the losing side (and this is quite understandable since, in most cases, a GM-rated player will play a good defense). This allows puzzles like today's to slip by now and then, where the line played in the game is most certainly NOT a solution.

Unfortunately, many kibitzers accept the played line uncritically.

To put things in the perspective, here's a starting position of another puzzle where the black makes a bad mistake:

White to play: L Darling vs R Wood, 1983


click for larger view

1. ?
For solution, see the game.

Dec-09-07  MostlyAverageJoe: <dzechiel:
20 Nd5 exd5

At this point white does not have to play 21 exd5, he does have the zwischenzug

21 Bxf6

On the black rook. If black should choose to move the rook, then white would play 22 exd5 and then retreat the bishop, gaining a pawn and having excellent prospects.>

After 21.Bxf6, black should allow the B-R exchange, gaining some pawns in return:

20. Nd5 exd5 21. Bxf6 dxc4! 22. Bxd8 cxb3!


click for larger view

and there is still lots of play here, with decent chances for the black to draw (the computer evaluation is 0.47 at 17 plies). I'll let Hiarcs run on this position for a while, to see if it finds any breakthrough for the white. The position is rather complex, and the analysis is slow, so maybe something will show up to disprove my assertion.

Dec-09-07
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: <MAJ> <After 21.Bxf6, black should allow the B-R exchange, gaining some pawns in return: 20. Nd5 exd5 21. Bxf6 dxc4! 22. Bxd8 cxb3!>

Yeah, but white played 21 exd5, which prevents your continuation.

BTW… for you polyglots, I found an annotation of this game. It’s in German.

http://www.herderschach.de/Training...

Dec-09-07  MostlyAverageJoe: < Jimfromprovidence: <MAJ> <After 21.Bxf6, ...> Yeah, but white played 21 exd5, which prevents your continuation>

I was commenting on <dzechiel>'s zwischenzug idea in my post, not on the game.

Jan-26-10  elohah: Wow!! That is a great combo!
Nov-21-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Jimfromprovidence: How can anybody say that they “saw” this combination to the end after 20 Nd5?....>

One need not-nor should one try-to see 'to the end' in the main line, after Black's defence 22....Re8 instead of the losing 22....gxf6, after which his demise is swift and sure. The fact that White wins a pawn whilst keeping a good position is more than enough to bring home the point.

Nov-09-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  Mating Net: I see that <Jimfromprovidence> pointed out several years ago that Black's 22...gxf6 is not forced in any way and that 22...Re8 would have only resulted in Black being down a pawn.

The excitement over the Queen sac must, therefore, be tempered with the knowledge that it was not a forced variation. Well done by White for making the move 24.Qxh7+, but the entire combination beginning with 20.Nd5 loses some style points because it was not forced.

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