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Simon Winawer vs Ilya Shumov
St Petersburg (1875), St. Petersburg
Russian Game: Classical Attack. Mason Variation (C42)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
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Feb-19-15  pedro99: My grandmother had kickboxing sessions with Steinitz
Feb-19-15  weary willy: I've always thought it was simply a reference to a windmill ... turning round and round, back and forth, left (take a piece), right (check), left (Take something else), right (check again)
Feb-19-15  Caissas Clown: I got Qxh5 (after first looking at the immediate Rg7) and realising that there was no chance of Black ever getting in Qf3 check(which looks mildly annoying,rather than good).

Where did Black go astray?? I'm none too familiar with Petrov Defence games but it looks to me that 9..c6 is better than 9..dxc4 , and that 10..Bg4 is better than Nc6. Nc6 looks awful : the start of a five-move "plan" to put the QN on b7.

Feb-19-15  wooden nickel: 20. ... Rxd5 was almost a winning move if it wasn't for 21. Qxh5 as of the fierce pin of White's bishop on d3, almost forcing White to make that good move. The line 21. ... Rxh5 is very challenging indeed! <gofer: This is definitely the most interesting variation. Both black and white threaten mate, so white cannot do anything that is not a check!> After:
21.Qxh5 Rxh5 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxf7+ Bf6 24.Bxf6+ Kg8 25.Rg7+ Kh8 26.Rg2+ Rxf6 27.Nxf6

click for larger view

The windmill <morfishine "Winawer-Mill"> is broken, but there's still a threatening mate leading to winning back the Queen after 27. ...Qxg2+ along with an extra piece!

<Cheapo by the Dozen: I presume the term "windmill" for this kind of combination is a reference to the German game of Muehle (Mill). Can anybody confirm/disconfirm?> I bet you're right, it's like "Zwickmuehle" meaning a double bind or predicament!

Feb-19-15  Bycotron: I believe I calculated everything for today's puzzle in about a minute, while yesterday I spent the majority of my thirty minute lunch break thinking about the puzzle and still not getting to the bottom of it!
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheBish: Winawer vs Shumov, 1875

White to play (21.?) "Medium"

White's pieces are well poised for a strike on the king. In fact, a queen sacrifice clears the way for a windmill attack.

21. Qxh5! and now:

(a) 21...Rxh5 22. Rxg7+ Kh8 23. Rxf7+ Kg8 24. Rg7+ Kh8 25. Rxe7+ Rf6

Or 25...Kg8 26. Rg1+ and mates.

26. Bxf6+ Kg8 27. Bc4+! Kf8 28. Rf7+ Ke8 29. Nd6+! Nxd6 30. Re1+ and Black can give up all three pieces before getting mated after 30...Qe3 31. Rxe3+ Ne4 32. Rxe4+ Re5 33. Rxe5#. But Black most likely resigns long before this, since Shumov doesn't sound like a computer!

(b) 21...Qxh5 22. Rxg7+ Kh8 23. Rxf7+ Kg8

Or 23...Bf6 24. Bxf6+ Kg8 25. Rg7+ Kh8 26. Rg5+ Rxf6 27. Rxh5 Rxh5 28. Nxf6 is an easy crush.

24. Rg7+ Kh8 25. Rxe7+ Rf6 (25...Kg8 26. Rg1+ Rg5 27. Rxg5+ wins everything) 26. Bxf6+ Kg8 27. Bg7!

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and the threat of 28. Nf6# (a family fork mate!) is crushing, e.g. 27...Qf3+ 28. Kg1 Rf5 29. Bc4+ Rf7 30. Bxf7+ Kxg7 31. Bh5+ and 32. Bxf3 leaves White ahead two rooks and a bishop!

Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Here's my look with Fritz 12:

<20...Rxd5??> This capture of the poisoned pawn loses.

Instead, Black had to try 20...f6! when Fritz indicates strong play could continue 21. Bf1! Qf5 22. Ng3! Nxg3+ 23. fxg3 c5 24. Qe2 Rf7 25. Bg2 Nd6 26. bxc5 bxc5 27. Rac1 c4 28. Rge1 Bf8 29. Qf2 Rb7 30. Bc3 Rb3 31. Bb4 Qd7 32. Bf1 Rc8 33. Qd2 a6 34. Bxd6 Bxd6 35. Bxc4 Rxa3 .

<21. Qxh5!!> This solves today's Wednesday puzzle.


If 21... Rxh5 (Fritz's first choice), then White wins after 22. Rxg7+ Kh8 23. Rxf7+ Bf6 24. Bxf6+ Kg8 25. Rg7+ Kh8 (diagram below)

click for larger view

26. Rg2+! (the only clear winning move here) 26...Rxf6 27. Nxf6 Qf3 28. Kg1 Qxg2+ 29. Kxg2 .

<22. Rxg7+ Kh8 23. Rxf7+!> The windmill attack is needed to win.

If 23. Rg5+?, then Black holds with 23...f6! (all others lose) 24. Rxh5 Rxh5 = to , as play might continue 25. Ng3! Rd5 26. Be4 Rfd8 27. Nf5 Rd2 28. Nxe7 Rxb2 29. Bxb7 Rd7 30. Nd5 c5 31. Bc6 Rd6 32. Rg1! Rxf2 33. Bb7 Rd2 34. Ne3 Re2 35. bxc5 bxc5 36. Nd5 f5

<23... Kg8 24. Rg7+ Kh8 25. Rxe7+ Kg8>

If 25... Rf6, then White wins with 26. Nxf6 as play might continue 26...Qf3+ 27. Kg1 Qxd3 28. Nxd5+! (also strong is 28. f5! Qxf5 29. Nd7+ Kg8 30. Rg7+ Kh8 31. Rg3+ Re5 32. Bxe5+ Qxe5 33. Nxe5 ) 28... Kg8 29. Nf6+ Kf8 30. Rae1 Qh3 31. Nd7+ Kg8 32. Rg7+ Kh8 33. Rg6+ Qc3 34. Bxc3#.

<26. Rg1+ 1-0> Black resigns as it's mate-in-five after 26...Qg6 27. Rg7+ Qxg7 28. Rxg7+ Kh8 29. Rg1+ Re5 30. Bxe5+ Rf6 31. Bxf6#.

Winning slightly quicker is mate-in-four with 26. Rg7+! Kh8 27. Rg5+ Re5 28. Bxe5+ Rf6 29. Bxf6#.

Premium Chessgames Member
  SuperPatzer77: Black resigns in lieu of 26... Rg5, 27. Rg7+! Rxg7, 28. Rxg7+ Kh8, 29. Rg1+ Qe5 (forced), 30. Bxe5+ Rf6, 31. Bxf6# 1-0

Beautiful combination by Winawer!!


Feb-19-15  ChessCoachClark: The Windmill tactic has been discussed at length by Edward Winter in his article 7150, "The Chess Seesaw" from 17 Nov 2011. Also, the most famous game for a windmill and actually commonly known as "The Windmill Game" is Torre vs Emanuel Lasker, Moscow 1925. In this game, Torre won after a long windmill sequence when Lasker resigned.
Feb-19-15  weary willy: I stand corrected. In the reference indicated by ChessCoachClark, Winter (who doesn't make (many) mistakes writes "Zwickmühle was Nimzowitsch’s word in Mein System, but the extent of its prior use has yet to be ascertained, another open matter being the first appearance of ‘windmill’ in chess literature. The English translation, My System, put ‘seesaw’.

The meaning of Zwickmühle is not ‘windmill’ but ‘double mill’, i.e. the term used in Mühlespiel (the board game known in English as Nine Men’s Morris). In his book Brettspiele der Völker (Berlin, 1931) Emanuel Lasker had (on pages 232-234) a section about Mühle, including references to Zwickmühle. As regards chess, Tim Krabbé devoted a chapter to ‘The art of the zwickmühle’ on pages 122-147 of Chess Curiosities (London, 1985). For complementary information, see pages 85-107 of the same author’s Nieuwe Schaakkuriosa (Amsterdam, 1977).

The German expression ‘in der Zwickmühle sitzen’ is translated by our dictionary as ‘to be in a catch-22 situation’ and ‘to be in a dilemma’. This figurative meaning is lost in ‘windmill’ and ‘seesaw’."

OK - but it still looks like a windmill to me! The loser in these things (the "milled"?) has no dilemma - he just has to trot back and forth being pummelled.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Longview: Black is threatening Rxd3 winning a Bishop and continuing with the attack on the cornered King. Pieces are equal but white has a more disrupted pawn structure but well coordinated pieces. Candidate moves I see are Ng3, Qxh5, Rxg7.

At this point I started reading the discussion and was pleased to see that at least I got the gist of the Windmill type play going on. I did miss the Rxh5 and thought it would be Qxh5 as a reply. I was trying to figure out how I could catch the black Queen on one of the branches when I ended my think. <Patzer> points out lines that I did not see Rxh5 and Bf6 which really complicates life because the back rank rook stays in play for black sort of ending the windmill play.

Feb-19-15  Edeltalent: 21.? White to move

White has a lot of problems: He is a pawn down, his pawn-structure is broken (right in front of his king no less), and worst of all, the Bd3 is pinned, attacked, and can't be defended. The only thing that he has going for him is that the bishop on the long diagonal and the rook on the half-open g-file converge nicely on g7, hinting at a windmill motive. If that's not gonna work, White will be in dire straits, so there's no choice, the queen has to go: 21.Qxh5.

Black has to recapture, but it's not obvious with which piece. Let's say 21...Qxh5 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxf7+. (The typical tactic 23.Rg8+ Kxg8 24.Rg1+ and mate doesn't work here, as Black can close the g-file with 24...Rg5 and then the diagonal with f6.)

At this point, Black can try to stuff the torturous diagonal. But 23...Re5 24.Bxe5+ Qxe5 25.Rxf8+ Bxf8 26.fxe5 leaves him a rook down, and after 23...Bf6 24.Bxf6+ Kg8 25.Rg7+ Kh8 26.Rg5+ Rxf6 27.Rxh5, White will remain a piece up.

click for larger view

(It's unfortunate for Black, that his piece on b7 is an unusual knight and not a fianchettoed bishop - otherwise, 27...Rxd3 would turn the tables.)

So instead, the windmill turns another time (wouldn't a pendulum be a more fitting picture?): 23...Kg8 24.Rg7+ Kh8 25.Rg5+. (25.Rxe7+ would force Black to sacrifice material with 25...Rf6. However, the black king can then run to f8 and the position remains messy. With the perpetual-potential of the black queen, I find the other solution more clear-cut). 25...Bf6 26.Bxf6+ Rxf6 27.Rxh5 we've seen before, and 25...Rf6 26.Rxh5 is equally hopeless. This means 21...Qxh5 is solved.

What remains to be checked is how these tactics hold after 21...Rxh5. In the analogous line 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxf7+ Kg8 24.Rg7+ Kh8 25.Rg3+ Bf6 26.Bxf6+ Rxf6 27.Rxh3 Rxh3, Black has improved a lot, as the Bd3 is now hanging.

click for larger view

28.Nxf6 Rxd3 29.Rg1 Rd8 and Black holds, 28.Bf1 Rfh6 is also far from won for White, 28.Ba6 Rfh6 and Black is even winning.

But deviating earlier, the discovered check in the other direction works with the rook on h5: 21...Rxh5 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxf7+ Kg8 24.Rg7+ Kh8 25.Rxe7+ Rf6 26.Bxf6+ Kg8 27.Bc4+ (with check this time!) Kf8 28.Rf7+ Kg8 (or 28...Ke8 29.Re1+ and mate) 29.Rg7+ Kf/h8 30.Rg8#.

No reason to get excited though. Black can change the move order, and after 21...Rxh5 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxf7+ Bf6 24.Bxf6+ Kg8 25.Rg7+ Kh8, 26.Rg3+ fizzles out like seen before. Finishing with a brilliancy also doesn't seem to work, 26.Rg8+ Kxg8 27.Rg1+ Kf7 28.Rg7+ Ke6 29.Re7+ Kf5, and the loose Bf6 dooms the attack.

Another tweak that can be tried, going back the line even further, is 21...Rxh5 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rg8+ Kxg8 24.Rg1+. Compared to 21...Qxh5, Black controls g5 one time less, and also his queen will be under attack. 24...Bg5 25.Nxg5 would turn out great for White, if not for the tiny detail that it's mate on h2.

After going back and forth some more, I finally found the one resource that gives White the forced win: 21.Qxh5 Rxh5 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxf7+ Bf6 24.Bxf6+ Kg8 25.Rg7+ Kh8 26.Rg2+! (a really pleasant move to spot) Rxf6 27.Nxf6, and with the rook astray on h5, Black can't really stop the mate on g8.

click for larger view

Giving up the queen on g2 of course is hopeless, 27...Rg5 28.Rxg5 Qf3+ is just a spite check after 29.Kg1, and 27...Qe6 (or Qc8) 28.Rag1 has White's doubled rooks overpowering the queen. The final try is 27...Qf3, which is probably most convincingly refuted by the sadistic 28.Kg1 (not 28.Be4 Rxh2+ 29.Kxh2 Qxf4+ 30.Kh1 Qxf6 and Black still struggles).

Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Stud h5 check out dust lined arts of the,

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the party ram bow hobble g7 turns ave into a goliath g dancewr g7 short thrift makes haste a mind sac over map head spin cam victor shaft rook wheels forlorn on the track of his tears around grounds have for.

Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Won i be proof lare every back in fly flight safe eline dipoff in fed each man deed delve in dug often eg liege nt focus good in god we trust amp cred a fright in cad case duo cops ave sense cuffed aims d5 alive no on more bus tore in cable wire hangers it nog in ruddy heck delve at dig as act i um good bless and bind i fed to fly knight around believe spark hack down in dutiful crum pivot able give gone stadium diligent a bind padre lo st in b2 i f6 later enlarge prong as chubb lock heads act flow water under the bridge g7 as h3 taken ive a back h5 ash ever i nearly am route one plug deems at in heaps lash i belt boot 20...Rxd5 cool cook coconut flake feed alamo i reign occular eye thinks

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king marching h8 in corner bishop etreats and rook e5 forced to impale queen arms h5 aids also comes off tender spot light rook,

and bishop in fronts at navigated rook delve spark in plug 24.Rg7+ if it is givings a vow ave in blown away am flight guffaws heartily an nick g7 ave in blood letter guilded the lily an flourish in sold gastric juice bubble gleaned an edge light wobble gut-off l0 win garbles h8 in deed 24....Kh8 25.Rxe7+ a oomph eg matrix ok in ogles son longing for da ship light am any lane oversee at layer exactly am route save in black g8 at hoofed along entires the notion eg liege nt job in hand jog in evermore a culpa in trusts e7 ment quarter back at in eg,

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Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: As others have stated, this is the tough line: 21 Qxh5 Rxh5 22 Rxg7+ Kh8 23 Rxf7+ Bf6 24 Bxf6+ Kg8 25 Rg7+ Kh8.

click for larger view

It took a while to notice that 26 Rg2+ was the clear winning move.

click for larger view

It keeps up the threats while guarding against ...Qxh2#. Now every move does not have to be a checking move for white. (BTW...26 Rg3+ wins just a pawn for white).

So after 26...Rxf6 27 Nxf6 black stops the mate threat with 27...Qf3. White parries this threat with the cold-blooded 28 Kg1.

click for larger view

Now black finally has to give up his queen.

Feb-19-15  ajile: The "wheel of death" is devastating. Gotta love this position for White.
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: Nice work guys, clearly best for Black is 21...Rxh5 though this loses too


Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White has the bishop pair for a bishop, a knight and a pawn.

Black threatens 21... Rxd3.

The convergence of the white QB and KR on g7 invites to play 21.Qxh5:

A) 21... Rxh5 (threatens 22... Qxh2#) 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxf7+

A.1) 23... Kg8 24.Rg7+ Kh8

A.1.a) 25.Rxe7+ Rf6 (25... Kg8 26.Bc4+ Rf7 27.Re8#) 26.Bxf6+ Kg8 27.Bc4+ Kf8 28.Rf7+ Ke8 (28... Kg8 29.Rg7+ and 30.Rg8#) 29.Nd6+ cxd6 (29... Nxd6 30.Re1+ and mate in three) 30.Re1+ Re5 31.fxe5 Qf3+ 32.Kg1 Qg4+ seems to force perpetual at least (33.Kf1 Qxc4+ and 34... Kxf7).

A.1.b) 25.Rg2+ (protects h2 and covers the check on f3) 25... Bf6 (25... Rf6 26.Nxf6 Qf3 (26... Bxf6 27.Bxf6#) 27.Nxh5+ and mate next) 26.Nxf6 and the threats 27.Nxh5+ and 27.Nd7+ seem to win.

A.2) 23... Bf6 24.Bxf6+ Kg8 25.Rg7+ Kh8 26.Rg2+ Rxf6 27.Nxf6 Qxg2+ (27... Qf3 28.Be4 looks winning) 28.Kxg2 + - [B+P].

B) 21... Qxh5 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxf7+

B.1) 23... Kg8 24.Rg7+ Kh8 25.Rxe7+ Rf6 (25... Kg8 26.Rg1+ wins) 26.Nxf6 wins decisive material due to Rxh7#.

B.2) 23... Bf6 24.Bxf6+ Kg8 25.Rg7+ Kh8 26.Bb2, preventing Rxf6 and threatening a number of discovered checks, seems to win.

B.3) 23... Re5 24.Bxe5+ wins a piece at least (24... Qxe5 25.Rxf8+ Bxf8 26.exf5; 24... Kg8 25.Rg7+ Kh8 26.Rg5+, etc.).

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: I missed 28.Kg1, pointed out by <Jimfromprovidence>, in the subline of my line A.2. My 28.Be4 loses the advantage after 28... Rxh2+ 29.Kxh2 Qxf4+ 30.Kg1 Qxf6.
Feb-19-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: Thought we'd be due for a break after a tough Wednesday. In fact, this looks reasonable for Thursday. White has the bishop pair for being a pawn down. Even greater compensation for the missing pawn is the splendid semi-open g-file that white now controls with bad intent. (Rook+bishop on long diagonal=big trouble for black.) First, white must eliminate a defender of g7.


This allows white to set up a bi-directional windmill.

Declines of the sac lose quickly:

A) 21... Qxd3? 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Qxh7#

B) 21... Rxd3 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxh7+ Kg8 24.Rh8#

C) 21... f6|g6 22.Qxh3 wins

Acceptance leads to material loss:

D) 21... Qxh5 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxf7+! (not 23.Rg5+? f6 24.Rxh5 Rxh5) Kg8 (Bf6 25.Bxf6+ Kg8 26.Rg7+ comes out the same) 24.Rg7+ Kh8 25.Rg5+ (not Rxe7+? Rf6, the windmill is gone and black can't win the queen) Bf6 26.Bxf6+ Rxf6 27.Rxh5 Rxh5 28.Nxf6 leaves white a piece and passed f-pawn ahead.

D.1) 23... Re5? 24.Bxe5+ Qxe5 25.Rxf8+ Bxf8 26.fxe5 (+ 1 rook)

E) 21... Rxh5 22.Rxg7+ Kh8 23.Rxf7+ Bf6 24.Bxf6+ Kg8 25.Rg7+ Kh8 26.Rg3+ Rxf6 27.Rxh3 Rxh3 28.Nxf6 aso leaves white a piece and passed f-pawn ahead.

Time for review.....

Feb-19-15  Oliveira: Nice analysis <Edeltalent>!
Feb-19-15  KabutoKoji: more like a tuesday
Premium Chessgames Member
  Cheapo by the Dozen: <Wooden Nickel>, it both is an isn't like a Zwickmuehle. It is in that there's no way for the opponent to get out of it. It isn't in that in a Zwickmuehle every move does damage, not just half of them. :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Cheapo by the Dozen: <pedro99>, I didn't make that story up. And while she had a vivid imagination, I'd guess that she didn't make it up either.
Feb-20-15  Alblitz: why not knight takesf4?
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Featured in the Following Game Collections [what is this?]
21.? (February 19, 2015)
from Thursday Puzzles, 2011-2017 by Phony Benoni
Russian Game: Classical Attack. Mason Var (C42) 1-0 Windmill
from Game collection: Zws by fredthebear
"Morphy Mate"...
from Collections in Idleness 7 by xajik
"Morphy Mate"...
from Collections in Idleness 7 by Trigonometrist
Russian Game: Classical Attack. Mason Var (C42) 1-0 Windmill
from QThee Queen is MEAN to Fredthebear Volume Two!! by fredthebear
jepflast's game collection 2
by jepflast
21.? (Thursday, February 19)
from Puzzle of the Day 2015 by Phony Benoni
Russian Game: Classical Attack. Mason Var (C42) 1-0 Windmill
from 2 Turns Left. Help yourself says Fredthebear. by fredthebear
Russian Game: Classical Attack. Mason Var (C42) 1-0 Windmill
from KP More Minis - Save by fredthebear
Russian Game: Classical Attack. Mason Var (C42) 1-0 Windmill
from Diagonals Attack: Bs Highway, Battery, Crossfire by fredthebear
Russian Game: Classical Attack. Mason Var (C42) 1-0 Windmill
from g-pawn/file demolitions after 1.e4 by fredthebear
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by Easy Point
Double Mill?
from P Ds to Open Flame Games by fredthebear
Russian Game: Classical Attack. Mason Var (C42) 1-0 Windmill
from Roundhouse RUUK Manuevers Two and Fro by fredthebear

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