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Zsuzsa Polgar vs Maia Chiburdanidze
"Desperately Saccing Susan" (game of the day May-02-2008)
36th Olympiad, Women (2004), Calvia ESP, rd 6, Oct-20
English Opening: Anglo-Indian Defense. Nimzo-English Opening (A17)  ·  1-0


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find similar games 15 more Zsuzsa Polgar/Chiburdanidze games
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Kibitzer's Corner
Nov-10-04  MiCrooks: What a great series of moves to find over the board! Those Polgar sisters play some fighting chess. I saw that 14. Nxe5 was possible pretty quickly when handed the position and told there was something in it, but what a find. The to follow it up with 15. Nxf7! and after Nxc3 16. Nh6!! What a find. Any other moves were bad for White after 14...Nxe2. Black could have tried 14...Qe7 but then Be4! ("saving" the Bishop by hanging it again!) leads to a solid advantage for White as well. Great game.
Nov-10-04  MiCrooks: Lol! After all that praise, I noticed that after the fireworks were finished (19...Kxh6) White immediately makes a mistake by finally saving the Bishop. I am sure she felt confident of winning the position and did not look for better moves at that juncture. Perhaps she had already spent too much time looking at the previous combination. Anyway, 20. Rc1 or Rb1 were much better than Be6. Point is that the Bishop is still immune to capture as gxf5 Rc3 (or Rb3) leads to mate.

In fact, mate is still threatened with the rook lift next turn. Black has to drop a piece to avoid mate. The actual game continuation lead to another 20 moves being played. Rc1 would likely have lead to an immediate resignation.

Still a great game!

Nov-02-05  bishopawn: A great game indeed. And thanks to Maia for not calling it quits early on, even when Susan was quick in setting up the mating net, w/16.Nh6.
Dec-14-06  DHW: Finding Nxe5 and looking ahead far enough on all of blacks responses to realise that you come out on top is truly amazing.
May-11-07  TaxiDriver: Susan Polgar could have really been great but situations in life did not go well for her. Such as The Hungarian government not permitting her to travel abroad for awhile and her divorce in America because of her children making her have to settle in a country where chess takes a back seat to almost everything else. And FIDE robbing her by ridiculously awarding all women players 100 free FIDE points to their ratings!
May-02-08  apple pi: well, maybe not all women players ;)
May-02-08  deadlysin: crazy game
May-02-08  gtgloner: I had noticed 14. Nxe5 and thought it might be an interesting idea, but all the wild stuff after that was way beyond my chess foresight!
May-02-08  apexin: brilliant!
May-02-08  nimzo knight: WOW! Throwing chess theory into bin. White didn't move d or e pawn for 27 moves!! I remember first thing people teach you in chess is to move those pawns to control center and free your pieces.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: 20.Rb1!! or 20. Rc1!!, threating R/3-Rh3# would have close the game instantly.

click for larger view

May-02-08  capablancakarpov: <whiteshark: 20.Rb1!! or 20. Rc1!!, threating R/3-Rh3# would have close the game instantly.> Hum, doesn´t 20...Bf3 save black for the moment?
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <capablancakarpov < Hum, doesn´t 20...Bf3 save black for the moment?>> Yes, your are right! 'Instantly' is the wrong word here, it should have been like 'quicker' or 'faster'. After (20.Rb1 Bf3) 21.Rb3 I would call it 'hopeless', but don't weigh my words. :D
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: I like the finish... Instead of a struggle with the exchange up,white simplifies to an ending with two connectors vs a lone pawn. At the crucial point,white can even sac the rook for the pawn.

A nice one by the girlz!

Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: I have video annotated this game on youtube, with a cross reference back to this page:

Best wishes

Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Black initially plays accurately in this rarely played line of the English opening until she makes the error 13...g6?, which allows White to play the amazing 14. Nxe5!, and ignore the attack on her Bishop while launching an attack on Black's now weakened castled position. Black reacts poorly and makes an understandable second mistake with 14...Nxe2? (14...Qe7! had to be tried), after which White responds with a second and clearly decisive surprise attacking move with the demolition follow-up 15. Nxf7! .

After 15. Nxf7!, Black is busted. She does as much as she can to mitigate the damage, but White plays near flawlessly in pushing her attack to a decisive advantage with 21. Bd5! .

Aug-27-10  Grantchamp: At microoks: In her book: chess tactics for champions, she claimed she was short on time and missed that move
Nov-16-10  siamesedream: <What was the best game you ever played?>

"One of my all time favourites is against Chiburdanidze at the Calvia Olympiad in 2004."

Dec-15-10  WhiteRook48: 20 Rb1 Bf3 21Rb3 Bh5 22 Be4
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessCoachClark: This game is included in CHESS EXPLAINED: The English Opening (Franco; 2006).
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