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Jan Hein Donner vs Dragoljub Velimirovic
Capablanca mem (1971)  ·  Benoni Defense: Classical Variation. Czerniak Defense Tal Line (A77)  ·  1-0
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Kibitzer's Corner
Jul-26-08  sneaky pete:

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Lieve pion op a5

Mooi klein ding, randpion ben je, niet meer dan één veldje mag je bestrijken. Je bent zo klein, bijna niets, en je hebt de hele partij daar op je plaatsje gestaan, maar al die tijd was mijn hoop op jou gebouwd en al mijn angstig hunkeren was voor jou. Ik zag je wel, zoals je daar stond, kleine bengel. De mensen dachten natuurlijk dat het om de pion op d5 ging, hij trok hun aandacht, ja ze keken alleen naar hem, maar jij en ik wisten het wel, het ging om jou, om jou en jou alleen.

Je hebt gewacht, stouterd, je hebt je niet opgedrongen, want je wist dat ik al die tijd alleen maar aan jou dacht en dat je niets hoefde te doen, want dat ik vanzelf wel bij je zou komen. Kleine randpion, je bent nu vrij. Ga je gang, op a8 wacht jou en mij de onuitsprekelijke heerlijkheid. Heb mijn dank, klein lief ding. Ik heb je lief,

je Koning.

Sep-20-08  ToTheDeath: Donner's tribute to the "sweet little thing"- the a pawn.

Velimirovic is one of those ultra-sharp players that outplays Donner here in the middlegame, only to show poor technique and allow White's active king to turn the tables beautifully- with the help of that sweet little thing on a5, of course.

Apr-10-15  Volmac: Dear pawn on a5,

Sweet little thing, a rook's pawn you are, just one square is all you control. You're so small, almost nothing and throughout the game you've been standing there on your little place, but all that time my hope was built on you, and all my fearful hankering was for you. I did see you standing there, you little rascal. People thought, of course, it was the d5 pawn that it was all about, he drew their attention, they all looked at him, but you and I knew better, it was all about you, about you and you alone.

You've been waiting, you naughty boy, not wanting to come on, because you knew that all the time I was only thinking of you and that you didn't have to do anything at all, because I would be coming to you of my own. Little rook's pawn, you're free now. Go ahead, unspeakable bliss is waiting for you and me on a8. Thank you, you sweet little thing. I love you,

your King

Black resigns. (J. H. Donner)

Apr-10-15  WDenayer: The last time I looked this game was 35 years ago. It was published in a book in Dutch with the nice title 'The greatest love is between a man and his horse.' It contains bio's and interviews of Dutch chessplayers (Donner, De Groot, Timman, Bohm, Ree, Bouwmeester, many others) and each of them choose one game that they found, for one reason or another, particularly interesting. Donner choose this one because, as he explained, he got into trouble after the opening. Velimirovic had a big advantage, even perhaps a winning position. But Donner, knowing Veli's personality, still thought that he had things under control: his opponent would lack to patience to drive the positional advantages home. And that is what happened – Velimirovic did not play it well and suddenly the a pawn was queening. Now, I played through this game this evening. I do not know the Benoni. I fail to see when and why Black had such a big advantage. Perhaps someone could give some analysis.
Apr-12-15  Volmac: Donner's own commentary on the game is hilarious to read. But if only the chess is taken into consideration according to Donner 13.h3 is much better than 13.♗f1 but the big mistake by white is 14.f4?? After 14...♘eg4 15.♘f3 c4!! he considers the game won for black. The best variation for black is after 16.a5 ♕c7 17.e5 as in the game and black can now play 17...dxe5 18.fxe5 ♗f8!

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Interesting. Donner does not give more variations but for example 19.exf6 ♗c5+ 20.♗e3 ♖xe3. And 19.♘a4 ♗b4 20.♖e2 ♘xe5 (20.♗d2 ♗c5+). White seems to hang on by 19.♖e2 ♘d7 20.♕a4 though but black is definitely better.

Black's mistakes accoring to Donner are 17...♕c5+ and 20...♘h5? Black could have had the better endgame after 20...♘xe5 21.♗f4 ♘h5 22.♗xe5 ♖xe5. Despite being a pawn down white has the advantage after 30...♗f5? Black could have constructed a fortress with 30...♗b5 and 31...♘d7.

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