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Olle Engstrom vs Argiris Koumtsis
IBCA European Individual Championship (2007), Durham ENG, rd 3, Aug-16
Queen's Gambit Accepted: Rosenthal Variation (D21)  ·  1-0


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sac: 13.Bxh7+ PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Jun-15-11  David2009: O Engstrom vs A Koumtsis, 2007 White 13?

Consider 13. Bxh7+ etc, the Vampyre Attack, see <Once>'s post P Charbonneau vs H A Hussein, 2008 (also known as the Greek Gift sacrifice). I first read about it in the excellent Penguin handbook "The game of chess" by Harry Golombek published in 1954 and a 13th birthday present. Before playing the sacrifice I now always check to see if Van Helsing's defence is available for Black (see <Once's> post above): this time it isn't so I'll play 13. Bxh7+. Time to check:
Here's the puzzle position:

click for larger view

Link to Crafty End Game Trainer to see how it defends: The EGT defends 13.Bxh7+ with 13...Kxh7 14.Ng5+ Kg6! and if 15.Qg4 (the Harry Golombek recommendation 1954) f5 16.Qg3 f4 17.Qg4 (if 17.Bxf4 Nf5) 17...Qe8 18.Nce4 cxd4 19.Nxe6+ and the waters are getting very muddy. Alternatively <TheBish>'s suggestion 15.Qd3 leads to 15...Nf5 16.g4 f6 17.gxf5+ exf5 18.exf6 gxf6 19.Nh3 Bxc3 20.bxc3 (so far <TheBish> has read the EGT's mind: now the EGT diverges) cxd4!? and if 21.cxd4 Re8 22.Qd2 Kf7 to leave a complex position with chances for both sides:

click for larger view

Of course, there may be better for White in these lines. Enjoy finding the win!

Jun-15-11  zb2cr: T guess I get partial credit. I thought this was what Vladimir Vukovic called "The clasic Bishop sacrifice" in <The Art of Attack In Chess> and found the first two moves. I also worked out the line if 14. ... Kg8 and saw it lost for Black. However, I saw that 14. ... Kg6 was critical for the correctness of the sacrifice, but did not work out a convincing line for White. (Of course, it looks like only <patzer2>, assisted by the silicon monster Fritz, actually did....)
Premium Chessgames Member
  takchess: Despite 14..kg6 and it murkiness,not playing bxh7+ would be a crime against chess. Then again, thinking like this has kept me at a low rating all these years (while having fun). 8)
Jun-15-11  k.khalil: This is obviously a french opening. I've attempted on several occasions the'beautiful blunder' bxh7+ without rigirous calculations. Todays puzzle is medium.

First, I've tried this,

13. Bxh7+ Kxh7
14. Ng5+ Kg8
15. Qh5 Re8
16. Qxf7+ Kg8
17. Qh5+ Kg8
18. Nxe6+ Forking the queen and King.

Then to my horror, I see a bishop on c8, and all this attempt was useless.

Jun-15-11  k.khalil: Oops. It's not a french opening, but has its opening pawn structure, Nc3 and Bb4...
Jun-15-11  Muztang: Here is a possible win after <14... Kg6 15. Qg4 f5 16. Qg3 f4 17. Qg4 Qe8 18. Nce4! cxd4>

19. Rxd4 Nf5 20. Rxb4 Nh6 21. Qh3 Rf5 22.
Rd4 Qe7 23. Qd3 Ng4 24. Nf3 Nxe5 25. Nxe5+ Rxe5 26. Nd6+ Kf6 27. Bxf4 Qxd6 28. Re4 Nxf4 29. Rxf4+ Ke7 30. Rf7+ Kxf7 31. Qxd6

No way I would have seen any of this before playing Bxh7, I just went through it while playing against Sigma Chess...

Premium Chessgames Member
  Patriot: This did seem tough for a Wednesday. 13.Bxh7+ is easy enough to see but after 13...Kxh7 14.Ng5+ Kg6 it looks tricky thanks to 15.Qg4 f5. This wouldn't be easy for me to play in a 30 minute game.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Fusilli: The biography of Koumtsis says he was born in 1996. The game was played in 2007. I guess that explains 8...Na5, 9...Nc6.
Premium Chessgames Member
  teddyo: <Squares> If Black plays 13...Kh8 then 14.Ng5 followed by a transfer of the White Queen to the h-file looks pretty inescapable - eg. 14...g6 15.Bxg6 fxg6 16.Qg4. Haven't checked with an engine, but it still looks like a win.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <David2009> In the line 13.Bxh7+ Kxh7 14.Ng5+ Kg6! 15.Qg4 f5 16.Qg3 f4 17.Qg4 Qe8 18.Nce4, Crafty's 18...cxd4 (diagram below)

click for larger view

is refuted by 19. Rd3!, when play might continue 19...Ng8 20. Nxe6+ Kf7 21. Rxd4 (also strong is 21. Bd2!) 21...Bxe6 22. Ng5+ Kg6 23. Nxe6+ Kf7 24. Qf5+ Ngf6 25. Nxf8 .

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: From an Alekhine Defense, I think.

The material is even.

Black is probably considering 13... Nf5.

White can attack the black castle immediately with every piece except the rook on a1. The bishop on d3 and the pawn on h7, defended by the king only, suggest 13.Bxh7+:

A) 13... Kxh7 14.Ng5+

A.1) 14... Kh8 15.Qh5+ Kg8 16.Qh7#.

A.2) 14... Kg8 15.Qh5 Re8 (15... Nf6 16.exf6 wins)

A.2.a) 16.Qh7+ Kf8 17.Qh8+ Ng8 18.Nh7+ Ke7 19.Bg5+ Ngf6 (19... f6 20.Qxg7#; 19... Kd7 20.Bxd8 + -) 20.Qxg7 looks good for White.

A.2.b) 16.Qxf7+ Kh8 17.Rd3 Ng8 (17... Nf4 18.Bxf4) 18.Rh3+ Nh6 19.Rxh6+ gxh6 20.Qh7#.

A.3) 14... Kh6 15.Nxe6+ Kh7 16.Nxd8 + -.

A.4) 14... Kg6 15.Qg4 (threatens 16.Nxe6+)

A.4.a) 15... f5 16.exf6

A.4.a.i) 16... Kxf6 17.Nce4+ Kg6 18.Nxe6+ Kh7 19.Qxg7#.

A.4.a.ii) 16... e5 17.Ne6+ Kxf6 (17... Kf7 18.Nxd8+) 18.Bg5+ Kf7 (18... Kg6 19.Bxe7+ and 20.Bxd8) 19.Nxd8+, etc.

A.4.b) 15... Nf6 16.exf6 Kxf6 17.Nh7#.

B) 13... Kh8 14.Ng5

B.1) 14... f6 15.Qh5 Re8 16.Bg6+ Kg8 17.Bf7+ Kf8 18.Nh7#.

B.2) 14... g6 15.Qg4 with a strong attack. For example, 15... Kg7 16.Nxd5 exd5 17.Qh4 Rh8 18.Ne6+ fxe6 (18... Bxe6 19.Qh6#) 19.Qf6+ Kh7 20.Qf7#.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: I missed

A.4.a.iii) 16... Nxf6 and the game becomes unnecessarily complex for White, if not inferior.

Instead of the typical 15.Qg4, pushing the king side pawns with 15.h4 and g4 looks much stronger. For example (variations due to Houdini on Arena) 15... Rh8 16.g4 Rxh4 17.Qe4+ f5 18.exf6+ Nf5 (18... Kxf6 19.Qf3+ Nf5 (19... Kg6 20.Qf7+ Kh6 21.Nxe6+) 20.gxf5 Bxc3 (20... exf5 21.Nxd5+) 21.fxe6+ + -) 19.Nxe6 Bxe6 20.gxf5+ Bxf5 21.Qxh4.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hedgeh0g: The position was crying out for Bxh7+, so that's what I played. :)

This sacrifice does not always work, since the opponent often has the defensive resource of going to g6, which can complicate matters. In this case, however, Qg4 decides the matter after Kg6.

Jun-15-11  newton296: the game is crying out for the standard sac Bxh7! but it takes alot of good follow up moves to bring home the point !
Jun-15-11  psmith: <David2009> In your line after 15. Qd3+ (my choice when looking at this puzzle though I didn't work it all the way through) -- after 20... cxd4 Fritz 5.32 finds 21. Qf3! which is very strong for White.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <David2009> After 13.Bxh7+ Kxh7 14.Ng5+ Kg6! 15.Qg4 f5 16.Qg3 f4 17.Qg4 Qe8 18.Nce4 cxd4 19. Rd3! Ng8 20. Nxe6+ Kf7 21. Rxd4!, Crafty played 21...Qc6 (diagram below):

click for larger view

22. Rxb4!! initiates a winning pursuit (King Hunt), as play might continue 22...Nxd4 (22...Bxe6 23. Nd6+! Ke7 24. Rxb7+ Nc7 25. Qxg7+ Bf7 26. Bxf4 ) 23. Nd6+ Ke7 24. Qxg7+ Kxe6 25. Qxf8 Ne7 26. Qf7+ Kxe5 27. Bxf4+ Kd4 28. Rd1+ Nd3 29. Be3+ Ke5 30. Qxe7+ Be6 31. f4+ Nxf4 32. Qg7#.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: A classic the theme of "♗x♙+ ♔x♗ ♘-♘5+ wins! Horray!!
Jun-15-11  mworld: <David2009> nice post. Really brought out the richness of the position and defenseive ideas that a resourceful player could employ to frustrate.
Premium Chessgames Member

click for larger view

Bishop sac looks tempting.

<13.Bxh7?! Kxh7 14.Ng5+ Kg6> Any other move leads to mate.

A)14...Kh6 15.Qg4 Nf5 16.Qh3+ Kg6 17.Qh7#
B)14...Kh8 15.Qh5+ Kg8 16.Qh7#
C)14...Kg8 15.Qh5 Re8 16.Qxf7+ Kh8 17.Rd3 Nf5 18.Rh3+ Nh6 19.Rxh6+ gxh6 20.Qh7#

This move is the hardest one to find in this puzzle.

Didn't feel right when I first thought of this move but it is strong.

h5+ is a serious threat.

Starts a discovery attack by sacrificing h4.

click for larger view

<16...Rxh4 17.Qe4+ f5 18.exf6+ Kxf6> 18...Nf5 can't be played. White can win both the knight and the rook with 19.gxf5+

click for larger view

<19.Qf3+ Nf5 20.gxf5 Bxc3 21.fxe6+ Ke7 22.Qf7+ Kd6 23.dxc5+ Kc6 24.e7! Qxe7 25.Qxd5+>

click for larger view

It's over. There may be other ways to win this but I liked h4 variation.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Ghuzultyy: EGT against my line:

13.Bxh7+ Kxh7 14.Ng5+ Kg6 15.h4! Rh8 16.g4! Rxh4 17.Qe4+ Nf5!?

(Out of line.)

18.gxf5+ Kh5 19.Qf3+ Rg4+ 20.Kh2!

<20.Kh1?? Nxc3! 21.bxc3 Qd5 and the advantage is lost.>

20...Nf4 21.Bxf4 exf5 22.Rg1 f6 23.Nf7! Qxd4 24.Ne2 Bd2 25.Nxd4

Won the queen!

25...Bxf4+ 26.Kh1
and there is no big threat. White wins.

Jun-15-11  VincentL: "Medium/Easy".

First there is the standard 13. Bxh7+ Kxh7 14. Ng5+ Kg8 15. Qh5 followed by 16. Qh7 mate.

Black can play 15.....Re8 (the only way to prevent Qh7 mate), then white continues 16. Qxf7+ Kh8 17. Rd3 Ng8 18. Rh3+ Nh6 19. Rxh6+ gxh6 20. Qh7 mate.

There are some other defensive options.

14....Kh6 15. Nxf7+ wins the black queen.

14....Kg6. I am actually struggling after this move. I have tried Qd3+, Rd3, Qe4+ and Qg4 but I cannot find anything decisive.

13... Kh8. Again I see nothing decisive in the short term, although white gains a pawn and has a superior position.

I am missing some key idea in this puzzle. My time is up, and rather embarrassingly I have to check to see how this panned out.

Jun-15-11  scormus: Nice instructive puzzle.

I had almost no time this morning, so went for 13 Bxh7+ and anticipated more or less the game continuation, even though .... <Jim, and others> ... the possibility of 14 ... Kg6 muddies things.

I seem to remember reading, was it Harry Golombek's classic book (my only chess tutor for several years) that B's best chance of surviving the Greek Gift is ... Kg6, and then its usually Qg4. The win is there but not so simple.

I rather like <Ghuzultyy 15 h4> but OTB I would almost certainly have played the "standard" Qg4 and trusted my instincts to find a way through

Jun-15-11  sevenseaman: <Ghuzultyy> Liked your <15. h4> variation as I had tried it myself. I did not follow it through because when I backed it up with <16. g4> the White K started looking uncomfortably bare. Half baked approach.

Its an interesting, natural line organic to the need of the position. Nice analysis!

Jun-15-11  MaczynskiPratten: I spent most of my time looking at the Kg6 variation because (a) Kg8 looks suicidal (maybe Black was wrongly relying on his Nf5 manouvre) (b) Kg6 is the standard defence (c) I couldn't see a clear win after 15 Qg4 f5 even though Qg4 is the "standard" move here. I found and chose 15 Qd3+ as spotted by <TheBish> but didn't feel I'd analysed it to a clear win. <Ghuzultyy>'s 15 h4 is neat. But the length of the continuations makes this at least a Friday puzzle if it's thoroughly solved - as other kibitzers have found.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Ghuzultyy: <Squares: What's the continuation if black decides against taking the bishop?> Glad you asked;

13...Kh8 14.Ng5 g6 15.Qf3 Kg7 16.Qh3 Rh8 17.Nce5 cxd4


click for larger view

What is the best move for white 18.?

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