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Samuel Reshevsky vs Svetozar Gligoric
Reshevsky - Gligoric (1952), New York, NY USA, rd 5, Jun-10
Queen's Gambit Declined: Exchange. Positional Variation (D35)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: 18.Nb5! cxb5 19.Qxc7+ Kxc7 (not quite forced, but 19...Ka8 20.Nxe6 Nxe6 21.Rxf7 also favors White) 20.Nxd5+! Kc8 (20...Kd7? 21.Bb5+ Kc8 22.Rc1+ Nc4 22.Rxc4#) 21.Rc1+ Nc4▢ (21...Kd7? 22.Bb5#) 22.Rxc4+ Kd7. Now what? I can't visualize anything better than 23.Rc7+ Ke8 24.Nf6+ Kf8 25.Rxb7, when White should be winning, with a pawn and a dominating position for the sacrificed exchange.
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: OK, my line totally doesn't work. I failed to visualize that Black had acquired a pawn on b5 - which will protect a knight interposed on c4 - so White has nothing better than Nxe6+, Nxd8, and Bxb5. Doubtless winning eventually, but I expect a POTD to have a more decisive conclusion.
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <weirdoid: Puzzle aside, why did black play 7 ... Bg4, was it a fingerfehler? Or, did Gligoric plan to put it in g6? To my patzer eyes, considering that soon afterward he put it in e6 anyway, that Bg4 move seemed pretty pointless - actually, pointless and not pretty. Or, is it a book move?>

Black's QB is his "problem piece" in the QGD. Gligoric wanted to develop it to f5, but 7.Qc2 stopped that. So he played 7...Bg4, intending ...Bh5-g6. After 9.h3, I think he abandoned that plan because of 9...Bh5 10.f4! and the bishop is in trouble.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: The material is identical.

The convergence of five pieces (after eventual Nb5 and Nxe6) on c7 suggests 18.Nb5, attacking along the c-file and the diagonal b8-h2:

A) 18... cxb5 19.Qxc7+ Bxc7 20.Rxc7

A.1) 20... Kxc7 21.Nxe6+

A.1.a) 21... Kd7 22.Nxd8 Rxd8 23.Bxb5+ and White has the better ending [2B+P vs 2N].

A.1.b) 21... Kc6 22.Nxd8+ Rxd8 23.Rc1+ Kd7 (23... Nc4 24.b3 + -) 24.Rc7+ Ke6 25.Rxb7 wins an extra pawn compared with A.1.a.

A.2) 20... Ne8 21.Nxe6 Nxc7 (21... fxe6 22.Rxh7+ and 23.Rxh8 + -) 22.Bxc7+ Kc8 23.Bxd8 fxe6 24.Bxb6 axb6 25.Bxb5 + - [B+P].

A.3) 20... Rc8 21.Nxe6 Nxe6 22.Rxf7+ Ka8 23.Bxb5 + - [2P].

A.4) 20... Ka8 21.Bxb5 wins a pawn.

B) 18... Qe7 19.Nxd6 Rxd6 (19... Qxd6 20.Nxe6 wins the queen) 20.Nxe6 wins an exchange and a pawn.

Jul-04-13  RookFile: A nifty game by Reshevsky. He saw deeply into the position through his strong ability to calculate.
Premium Chessgames Member
  cocker: Got the right ideas but not in the right order.
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: My best line followed through to move 23:

<18.Nb5> 18...cxb5 19.Qxc7+ Bxc7 20.Rxc7 Kxc7 21.Nxe6++ Kd7 22.Nxd8 Rxd8 23.Bxb5+

The points of interest being (1) the initial Knight sac (2) the temporary exchange sac 20.Rxc7 (3) the double-check 21.Nxe6++ recovering a piece (4) 22.Nxd8 [avoiding 22.Nxg7? since Black can trap the knight and recover the piece] & (5) 23.Bxb5+ winning a pawn after all that

Needless to say, there's no way I could visualize 21 more moves

PM: I guess Gligoric didn't feel up to a long dour struggle playing an exchange down after 18. Nb5 <18...Qc8> 19.Nxd6 Rxd6 20.Nxe6 Qxe6 21.Qc5 Rhd8 22.Bxd6+ Qxd6 23.Qxd6+ Rxd6

Jul-04-13  GrandMaesterPycelle: A rare case where my solution was precise. Yay.
Jul-04-13  mistreaver: Thursday. White to play .Medium. 18?
18 Nb5 seems reasonable.
A) 18... cxb5
19 Qxc7 Bxc7
20 Rxc7
20... Kxc7
21 Nxe6+ and
22 Nxd8
20... Ka8
21 Nxe6 Nxe6
22 Rxf7 and white is just winning
B) 18... Qe7
19 Nxd6 Rxd6
20 Nxe6 Nxe6
21 Bxd6
and white has won exchange
Jul-04-13  zb2cr: Huh. All I could see was the win of one Pawn, and I figured that would not be enough. Turns out to have been exactly the game line!
Jul-04-13  5hrsolver: Reshesvsky opts for the simplifying 22.Nxd8. 22.Nxg7 and the knight may get trapped.

It would be nice if 21.Nxd5+ works but it does not.

Another point of interest is if black plays 39..fxe3 then 40.Kc3 Nf4. I guess white intended 41.Bg7 with intention to capture the kingside pawns.

Jul-04-13  TimothyLucasJaeger: I was pleasantly surprised to find a POTD with such a modest material gain as the solution. I found the line (up to 23 Bxb5) but figured i'd missed something better.

Helps to train my tactical awareness for pracitcal situations when not every best move results in the win of a piece or more.

I'd love to see more puzzles like this or even puzzles where we are struggling to find the one defensive move to draw, etc. Great job, chessgames!

Jul-04-13  Vincenze: That was along puzzle
Jul-04-13  BOSTER: The hidden bishop on h2, which is fighting against the king and queen on the same diagonal h2-b8, created the condition for a combo. So 18.Nb5 and black is forced to accept the sacr. (otherwise he will loose the exchange) cxb5 19.Qxc7+ Bxc7 20.Rxc7 and here black is forced to accept the rook. So , Kxc7 21. Nxe6++ Kd7, and because if Nxg7 white knight has to stay here a lot of time, white had to play 22.Nxd8 Rxd8, and 23.Bxb5+ Ke7 (the diagram) white to play.

click for larger view

Now we can see that white transposed the pos. in <POTD> in the pos., where the theory is considered, two bishops (plus the pawn) have an advantage vs two knights. But the history knows many battles, where two knghts beat two bishops.

<geniokov> <The key move here is <18.Nxe6 followed by 19. Nb5 and black is crashed>.

This is wrong. After 18.Nxe6 Nxe6 19.Nb5 cxb5 white combo doesn't work.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: This puzzle is not at all difficult if one is familiar with the pattern.
Jul-04-13  eaglewing: For the variant 39..fxe3 40.Kc3 indeed Nf4 only looks good, but should lose against Bg7.

Still 39..fxe3 40.Kc3 a6 is obviously better than in the game. Still the black king needs to go active on the queenside to exchange the queenside pawns (otherwise a Zugzwang could be the threat), hoping the kingside position can be hold by the knight.

Jul-04-13  M.Hassan: Honestly, I went through the puzzle and did exactly as the text line but dismissed it as it only gained one pawn! (23.Bxb5+) and there was no mate or major advantage. I do not therefore deserve a solution point.
Jul-04-13  parisattack: <TimothyLucasJaeger: I was pleasantly surprised to find a POTD with such a modest material gain as the solution.>

Fully agree! Helps keep us honest.

Also, a nice game between a near prime Reshevsky and an up-and-coming Gligoric.

Jul-04-13  fokers13: This week's difficulty is seriously messed up(got the idea pretty soon but could not be bothered to work through it,like i usually do even with easier ones).

better get back on track and fast cg.

Jul-04-13  BOSTER: <parisattack> <A nice game>.

If we evaluate the <POTD> pos., and clearly understand that line from move 18 till 23 was forced, we have to come to conclusion that black lost this game in the opening.

I'm really sure that Gligoric could count this "combo". So, the question is: what was his mistakes untill move 18? Maybe he <vacillated> sometimes.

Jul-04-13  parisattack: Hmmm... Good point <Boster>. I just replayed the game a couple of times. Probably a question for someone with an engine? The KN sortie looks time-consuming, awkward though I think I have seen it in other QGD Exchanges. 16. ...0-0-0 sort of castled into it, so perhaps Gligo missed the combo?

I suspect this game, the QGD against Stahlberg and his KID win against Geller at Saltsjobaden 1952 moved him on to the KID where he made enormous contributions to theory. He discusses this topic a bit in the KID chapter of I Play Against Pieces.

Jul-04-13  Patriot: 18.Nb5 cxb5 19.Qxc7+ Bxc7 20.Rxc7 Kxc7 21.Nxe6++ Kd7 22.Nxg7 Rg8 23.Nf5 gxf5 24.Bxf5+

I'm not sure if this works but it's interesting.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: I wasn't even close on this one!
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <kevin86>: Whilst this

<perfidious: This puzzle is not at all difficult if one is familiar with the pattern.>

is not unknown in my puzzle-solving attempts at CG, this

<kevin86: I wasn't even close on this one!>

has certainly been known to happen as well!

Jul-05-13  BOSTER: <parisattack> <I just replayed the game a couple of times>.

Thanks for answer and the link to the games.

What have I learned from this game?
This game reminds once more that the pawn structure a7,b7,c6,d5 is very passive. That Tarrasch was right saying that the d4 pawn should be attacked by ...c5. Don't move your pieces in a such way that the opponent can easily attack them in one move. Such moves like ...7.Bg4, and ....15.Qc7 played by Gligoric. My guess it was better to play ...15.Qd7.
Moves 10.Bf4 and 13.g4 played by Reshevsky underline the brilliant thinking.

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