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Alexander Alekhine vs Edgar Colle
Paris (1925), Paris FRA, rd 6, Feb-17
Queen's Gambit Declined: Chigorin Defense. Main Line Alekhine Variation (D07)  ·  1-0


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Given 33 times; par: 53 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Feb-21-15  Geronimo: Must have seen this before, otherwise I'm shocked by seeing through a Saturday puzzle so quickly. <Phony Benoni> is quite right though, without teasing out the proper line for a win after 29...f6, I would never play this otb.
Premium Chessgames Member
  jjones5050: Rudolf Spielmann vs Erich Eliskases
Semmering (1936) Italian Game: Two Knights Defense. Polerio Defense Goering Variation (C59) 0-1

Would one of you chess whizzes please review this game and let me know why 25. f3 doesn't equalize? Please leave a comment or two and I will check it later. Thank you!

Feb-21-15  ozu: ..couldn't piece together what happens after fxg6. I gotta be more rigorous on this stuff. Nice to look at the 1985 wcc game and compare. Would be nice to have Kasparov's memory. But of course he would know this game by Alekhine. Kasparov always felt like he knew who his opponents were and how they would behave. And of course he always asserted his knowing the mind of Karpov. Whenever I see some show on a k vs k wcc, it always has an interview with Kasparov talking about how he expected Karpov to play on a particular day, when faced with a certain game score, and dealing with a certain opening. I think, this talent for knowing his opponents and predicting their moves was extremely important to Kasparov and maybe was fine tuned to the point of being uncanny. It's certainly a recurring theme with him. There's that video where a young Magnus Carlsen meets Kasparov (a bit after their famous first meeting in competition). After a bit of small talk, they start discussing a just played game between Carlsen and Shirov. Kasparov grills a quite young Carlsen on how long it took Shirov to decide on one of his 1st moves with the black pieces. It was several minutes, remembers Carlsen. Shirov played d5 (as I recall). And again Kasparov grills Carlsen on Shirov. He asks Carlsen if he thinks Shirov spent all that time on the move deciding whether or not to play d6. And the young Carlsen says "I think so" and Kasparov and Carlsen have a laugh. And under his breath Kasparov disdainfully growls, "Typical Shirov". And so "knowing your opponent" was Kasparov's first lesson for the future world chess champion.

And who taught Kasparov this lesson when he was in his youth? Did it have to be someone physically present? I would say no. The concept is simple but the attitude is elusive. Some things are never truly understood unless they are understood viscerally. And who taught this lesson on the highest stage. I would say he learned it from Alekhine.

Feb-21-15  stacase: Every now and then, I get a Saturday puzzle move for move. I'm at Furnace Creek in Death Valley, maybe the below sea level atmosphere has an effect.
Feb-21-15  Edeltalent: 29.? White to play

I've seen the position after 29.Bxg6 hxg6 before, so no bragging rights for the forced main line 30.Qxd7 Rxd7 31.Re8+ (not 31.Rc8+ Rd8) Kh7 32.Rcc8 Rd8 33.Rexd8 (not 33.Rcxd8 Qc1+ 34.Kg2 g5) and the mate is unstoppable.

But it's not so obvious to me how White finishes off after the ugly, but more stubborn 29...fxg6. I have 30.Qe6+ Rf7 (The alternatives lose: 30...Kh8 31.Qe8+, and 30...Kf8 31.Rc4 Rf7 32.Rc8 Kg8 (the threat was Qe8+) 33.h4) 31.Rc8 Rxc8 32.Qxc8+ Rf8 33.Qe6+ Rf7 (not 33...Kh8 34.d6 and the pawn becomes unstoppable).

click for larger view

It feels like there should be a way to push through the pawn, but with Black always getting counterplay against f2, I don't quite see it, e.g. going for the rook endgame with 34.d6 Qf6 35.Qxf6 gxf6 36.Re8+ Kg7 37.Rc8 Kh6 (37...f5 38.Rc7 Kf6 39.d7 Ke7 40.d8Q+) 38.Rc7 (or 38.Rd8 Rb7) Rf8 39.Rxa7 Rd8 40.d7 Kg7 looks drawish.

Maybe White should just slowly play 34.Re2 in the diagram position and push the pawn later, but that's not a "puzzle solution" any more ;-)

Premium Chessgames Member
  lost in space: The critical line is

29. Bxg6 fxg6 30. Qe6+ Rf7 31. Rc8 Rxc8 32. Qxc8+ Rf8 33. Re8 Qf5 34. Rxf8+ Qxf8

click for larger view

It seems to me that the white d pawn is winning. My way would be 35. Qxf8 Kxf8 36. Kg2 Ke7 37. Kf3 Kd6 38. Ke4

click for larger view

with a won pawn ending.

Feb-21-15  dfcx: I found the first move
29.Bxg6 and see that hxg6 or Qxg6 leads to white wins. with 29...fxg6 it's hard to see any winning play.

<lost in space> I don't think white has a winning position in your final diagram.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: One thing I've noticed about puzzles this week: they're almost always white to move, and also easier than normal (or perhaps I'm getting better).

Anyway, I saw 29.Bxg6 hxg6 30.Qxd7 Rxd7 31.Re8+ Kh7, but couldn't find the followup.

Reminds me of Kasparov vs Karpov, 1985.

Feb-21-15  njdanie: According to a couple old Fred Reinfeld books and possibly even a Reuben Fine book, the game actually proceeded with: 31 Rc8+??? Rd8
white resigns.
Possibly Alekhine published a "revisionist" version of the game in his book...
Feb-21-15  Oliveira: <njdanie> Alekhine missing that? Oh no, sir.
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Mind g5 jangle a moot point g6 as spot f7 that.

Takes back and black should be able to hold again low mood g8 as monarch has room for breathe gumption as carry in light jod hopper d7 an strike at heart c6 brought to short conclusion drive sequester mitigate an ive at monarch trapped gets ave g8 up ply in lights h7 and corridor mate on card it ardent in aim part quip tip mob book g5 black baulk at cheers queen's at fag pin accolade i c2 mavis up arm c6 hang ever g5 tick glide off in time way rush under auld gate at monarch am ply why h7 into a mix by degrees gets caught hangoff hunker d7 own after g6 lie.

Down as carry guffaw heartily in weight g6 as top aorta f6 heart fleece away g6 light stumps up goods again be ever g5 i five vow ellucidate rooks double d7 an diminish stack black flat as a pancake light has mobile pawn d5 double trouble mission so on vet d6 in wet demand notice over ie eg coil g5 foils c6 why then pick in patch c6 an grin g5 oh sac g6 as cage cuff said bade an oomph at jobsworth an oodlessaid back basically in stump up join hands er vantage light wobble.

Am f7 should have taken instead of arrive h7 up ply in lights carriage inward it arduous in act flung over g5 i alive g6 as till hanker you lucky break g6 in case an wave initial cave in alimony spark i see keen g6 advocate no pong as try padre grated majesty c8 ease maybe it was in would g6 as work pump handles g8 luft h7 in swop d7 and angles i favour evermore light exchange off re you came light sac her d7 in cattle dip-off at prod awake g6 rosy leeway d7 an gleaned aedge see signal d7 fire up fervious sic form d8 rook an d7 lock and load i c6 gladly impale d7 and double back rank straight down hatch g6 as first wham came bargain monarch g8 on at run h7 in acts handles select hassles again business at kind frame g6 an try gangway hi mech chain black bald pate un cover g6 as trip ok f7 in over h7 it seem like for one f7 angle better floater glide.

Feb-21-15  sushijunkie: I still don't understand how I'll botch a Thursday, but I'll get a (some<this>) Saturday in 20-30 secs. Pattern recognition?
Feb-21-15  Bycotron: Move 29, white to play.
I notice a lot of Rooks and Queens flying around and a black King without any breathing room. How about we try to check mate him on his back rank and see where that gets us?

The immediate try with 29.Qxd7 doesn't work:

29.Qxd7 Rxd7
30.Re8+ Nf8
31.Rc8 g6
32.Rxf8+ Kg7 and white has too little for the Queen and no convincing continuation.

Boy, that Knight turned out to be annoying. How about we peck him off and try again?

29.Bxg6 is certainly attractive after a few moments of calculation!

29.Bxg6 Qxg6
30.Qxd7! 1-0

29.Bxg6 hxg6
30.Qxd7! Rxd7
31.Re8+ Kh7
32.Rc8 1-0 when black resigns due to the threat of Rh8# which black can only defend by going down a Rook!

The hardest line to calculate is...

29.Bxg6 fxg6
30.Qe6+ Kf8 (if Kh8, Qxd7!)
31.Rc4! 1-0 due to the threat of Rf4+ which will win Black's Queen.

I was rather proud when I spotted Rc4 in my mind's eye. :) Maybe I'm not as bad at this game as I think haha.

Feb-21-15  Bycotron: Well, 30...Rf7 as given by lost in space certainly would give me pause to think! I did not consider it before playing 29.Bxg6

As dfcx points out, white is not winning in the final position recommended by lost in space. In fact, white is dead lost!

38.Ke4 g5 (almost any pawn move wins for black)
39.h3 h6
40.Kd4 a6
41.g4 b5!
42.a5 b4!
43.Kc4 b3!
44.Kxb3 Kxd5 and the black King has white outflanked! 0-1

Returning to lost in space's line, 35.Qc7 looks like the most natural try for a win, ushering in the d-pawn for promotion. The position is probably winning for white, but the presence of Queens on the board makes the thing complicated.

For example:
35.Qc7 Qe8!
36.d6 Qe1+
37.Kg2 Qe4+
38.f3 Qe2+
39.Kh3 Qe6+
40.g4 Qf6! and white is having a hard time escaping the annoyance factor of the black Queen! I admit I cannot see a win for white in the 30...Rf7! line.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White has a bishop for a knight.

White can weaken Black's back rank with 29.Bxg6:

A) 29... Qxg6 30.Qxd7 wins a rook (30... Rxd7 31.Re8#).

B) 29... hxg6 30.Qxd7 Rxd7 31.Re8+ Kh7 32.Rcc8 and Black must lose the queen to avoid mate, ending up a whole rook down.

C) 29... fxg6 30.Qe6+

C.1) 30... Kh8 31.Qe8+ Rxe8 32.Rxe8#.

C.2) 30... Kf8 31.Rc4

C.2.a) 31... Rxd5 32.Rf4+ Rf5 33.Re5 and Black seems to be defenseless against Re(f)xf5+ (33... Rxf4 34.Rxg5).

C.2.b) 31... Re7 32.Rf4+ Ke8 (32... Qxf4 33.Qxe7+ wins) 33.Qc6+ Rdd7 34.Rfe4

C.2.b.i) 34... Rxe4 35.Rxe4+ Kd8 36.d6 and the threat 37.Qa8# wins.

C.2.b.ii) 34... Qxd5 35.Rxe7+ Rxe7 36.Rxe7+ Kxe7 37.Qxd5, etc.

C.2.b.iii) 34... Kf8 35.Qc8+ Kf7 36.Rf4+ Qxf4 37.Rxe7+ Kxe7 38.gxf4 wins.

C.2.b.iv) 34... Kd8 35.d6 Rxe4 36.Qa8#.

C.3) 30... Rf7 31.Rc7

C.3.a) 31... Qxd5 32.Qxd5 Rxd5 33.Re8+ Rf8 34.Ree7

C.3.a.i) 34... Re8 33.Rxg7+ Kh8 (33... Kf8 34.Rcf7#) 34.Rxh7+ Kg8 35.Rcg7+ Kf8 36.Rxa7 Kg8 37.Rag7+ Kf8 38.Rxg6 + - [3P].

C.3.a.ii) 34... Rd8 33.Rxg7+ Kf8 34.Rxh7 Kg8 35.Rcg7+ as in C.3.a.i.

C.3.b) 31... Qf6 32.Rc2 (32.Rxf7 Qxf7 33.d6 Qxe6 34.Rxe6 Rd7 and White looks worse), unclear.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: I saw 31.Rc8 after 30... Rf7 but forgot it! How annoying...
Premium Chessgames Member
  AvidChessMan: I kept eying up the black knight. Once eliminated, it could not block check by either white rook. Then I noticed a queen sac would free up the back rank and in the end a white rook would stand alone. 28. Qc6 helped me see this by showing white's intent to sacrifice the queen. A very good move.
Feb-21-15  KabutoKoji: more like a wednesday....
Feb-21-15  Everett: <ozu> I think you are spot on with one of Kasparov's outstanding skills that made him a great player.
Feb-21-15  M.Hassan: Very Difficult"
White to play 29.?
White has a Bishop for a Knight

If White can get to the eighth rank to check the King, Knight can defend it by jumping to f8, therefore:

<if...Qxg6 30.Qxd7 Rxd7 31.Re8#> So, Black Queen has to stay in dark square to watch d8 at least for time being and more importantly, a pawn in front of the King captures the Bishop to open an escape route for the King

30.Qxd7 Rxd7
31.Re8+ Kh7(forced)
Next, Rook to h8 and mate and the only way to stop mate will be:


Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: As several posters have noted, the win with 29. Bxg6!! gets complicated after 29... fxg6 30. Qe6+! Rf7 31. Rc8! Rxc8 32. Qxc8+ Rf8 (diagram below):

click for larger view

Playing it out with Fritz 12, White appears to win with 33. Re8! when play might continue 33...Qf6 34. Rxf8+ Qxf8 35. Qe6+ Qf7 36. Qc6 Qf3 37. Qe8+ Qf8 38. Qd7 Qf5 39. Qe7 Qf3 40. Qd8+ Qf8 41. Qc7 Qf3 42. Qb8+ Qf8 43. Qxa7 Qe8 44. Qa6 Kf7 45. Qc4 Qd7 46. Qf4+ Ke7 47. Qe5+ Kf7 48. d6 g5 49. h3 h6 50. Qd5+ Kf6 51. Kh2 g6 52. Kg2 Qd8 53. Qc6 Ke6 54. d7+ Ke7 55. Qxg6 Qxd7 56. Qg7+ Ke8 57. Qxd7+ Kxd7 58. Kf3 .

Feb-21-15  TheBish: Alekhine vs Colle, 1925

White to play (29.?) "Very Difficult"

White has an advantage, with control of the open c- and e-files, and Black's rooks stopped up on the d-file, thanks largely to the Be4 supporting the "stopper", the d5 pawn. But it's time for White to convert one advantage into another, by weakening Black's bank rank. First to clear the e-file:

29. Bxe4! hxg6

I know from experience how this game ends, and this was the pawn capture that occurs. Much better is 29...fxg6 30. Qe6+ Rf7 (not 30...Kh8?? 31. Qe8+! and mate next, or 30...Kf8? 31. Rc4 Rxd5 (31...Rf7 32. Rc8! Kg8 33. Rec1 followed by 34. Rxd8 and 35. Rc8) 32. Rf4+ Rf5 33. Re5! (a hard move to find), and one way or another, Black must give up the queen to stop mate) 31. Rc8! Rxc8 32. Qxc8+ Rf8 33. Re8 Qf6 34. Rxf8+ Qxf8 35. Qc7 and White has a big advantage in the Q+P endgame.

30. Qxd7+!! Rxd7

The bank rank has been compromised; now for the final invasion.

31. Re8+!

One final mistake to avoid: 31. Rc8+?? Rd8 32. Re8+ Rxe8 33. Rxe8+ Kh7 and White can resign.

31...Kh7 32. Rc8 and now it is Black who can resign, as the only way to stop mate is 32...Rd8 33. Rcxd8 (toward the king!) Qxd8 34. Rxd8, or 32...Qxg3+ 33. hxg3 Kh6, which is of course equivalent to resigning.

Feb-17-16  Allanur: great game, deserves to be the game of the day for the great ability of Alekhine to see an opportunity exhited in this game.
Aug-11-18  alshatranji: "njdanie: According to a couple old Fred Reinfeld books and possibly even a Reuben Fine book, the game actually proceeded with: 31 Rc8+??? Rd8 white resigns. Possibly Alekhine published a "revisionist" version of the game in his book..." This can't be true. Alekhine won the Paris 1925 tournament, where this game was played, with no losses. He couldn't have revised this too. I guess this is what happens when you're caught cooking up stuff, even once. Everybody starts assuming the worst about you
Aug-11-18  Strelets: Don't know about you, but the image of mid-'20s Alekhine sacrificing his queen and then immediately blundering on the next move of the combination when there was a forced win in sight is a little ridiculous to me.
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