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Viktor Korchnoi vs Ruslan Ponomariov
Donetsk m (2001), rd 8, Jan-16
English Opening: Symmetrical. Anti-Benoni Variation Spielmann Defense (A33)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: The last game of their 8 game match; this win enabled Korchnoi to draw the match 2-2 with 4 draws. In game 2 Ponomariov had played 8..d6 and Korchnoi had gone on to win; 8..Qc7 was new. Ponomariov used some active maneuvers (11..Nh5 and 13..Ba6) which are unusual when playing the Hedgehog formation but was able to reach a roughly equal endgame. Korchnoi had originally planned to play 25 Nxg3..Nxh4 26 Kf2..Nhxg2 27 Rg1..h4 28 Ne2..Nxe2 29 Rxg2+..Ng3 but realized that after 30 Rh1..Rc4 31 Bd3..Rd4 32 Ke3..Rg4! that Black is in no danger.

Korchnoi after 35 Ne4:
"During the last 7 moves White has made some progress. He has managed to exchange his weak central pawn and co-ordinated his pieces. Still, his weaknesses on the queenside and the highly centralized position of the black pieces make White's task pretty complicated..."

With 42..Rb4!? Black had overlooked 43 Re4! increasing White's edge. White would have been winning after 43..Rxa4 (43..Rxb2 44 Rxe5) 44 b3..c3 45 bxa..c2 46 Re1..Nd3 47 Rf1..c1(Q) 48 Rxc1..Nxc1 49 Kf4!. Ponomariov defended well until 48..Kf7? which cost him the game; better was 48..Kf5 49 Nxb6..c3 when Black is fine.

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