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Vugar Gashimov vs Alexander Grischuk
"The Tightrope Game" (game of the day Jun-01-12)
World Team Championship (2010)  ·  Sicilian Defense: Najdorf. Poisoned Pawn Variation (B97)  ·  0-1
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Given 16 times; par: 45 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Feb-14-12  Shams: <LTJ> Oh, mine isn't even a pun, just a title. Did you see the documentary?

Feb-14-12  LoveThatJoker: <Shams> No, I didn't see the documentary.

As I said in my last post, "Man on Wire" is a good pun as it is surely understood that the people who titled the documentary in question were employing a play-on-words from a popular expression (i.e., man on fire).

Yet to call this game "Man on Wire" - although great for a POTD pun - doesn't have as much of a universal appeal (i.e., a phrase that is easily translated to another language without losing it's inherent/archetypal meaning), nor as much of an artistic seriousness about it as "The Tightrope Game."

All this being said, I'm glad that "The Tightrope Game" struck a chord with you.


Premium Chessgames Member
  scormus: What a remarkable game! Deserves a rearkable pun.
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: Game Collection: Best Games of 2010
May-28-12  HeadCrunch: very qquuiieett ggaammee iinnddeeeedd
Jun-01-12  LoveThatJoker: This is the first time <CG> has selected my submission for GOTD with title/pun.

I am happy as this game is truly magnificent - a modern masterpiece.


Jun-01-12  HeMateMe: Hey, just like the 2012 Anand/Gelfand match--thrill a minute!
Jun-01-12  DanielBryant: What a remarkable game, and I definitely think the tightrope analogy is apt.
Jun-01-12  Shams: I'm bumping <Luzhin>'s great post of Jan 8 2010 since it's the only one post to mention a critical point:

<luzhin><The strange thing is that 15...Rh7 was solely designed to deter Gashimov's threat of g5 -- but in fact 16.g5!! was still the move to play, since after 16...hxg5 17.Nxe6! it's anyone's game. Indeed, if Grischuk were rash enough then to try 17...Qd7 then 18.Qxh7! Nxh7 19.Bh5+ and mate next! By the way, 39...Rac8 had the awesome threat of Rc1 mate.>

Grischuk thought for the better part of an hour before 15...Rh7?!.

Jun-01-12  ossipossi: 1972 Wchamp, Spasskij dared to play the poisoned pawn variation and win....
Jun-01-12  LoveThatJoker: <DanielBryant> I'm glad you like the tightrope analogy, man! Thanks for saying so! :)


Jun-01-12  piltdown man: I'll never be a grandmaster. Sigh!
Jun-01-12  weisyschwarz: Grischuk shows great nerve, and Gashimov was unaware that his opponent was using his king as an attack piece.
Jun-01-12  Major Dude: very very cool game :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <LoveThatJoker> Congrats on the pun! What a crazy game! Very interesting (and seemingly strong) suggestion by <Luzhin>. I'd be fascinated to see what the engines say about this game. It's way beyond my pay grade.
Premium Chessgames Member
  sevenseaman: When a K goes walky walky like that there is always trouble, for him or the other guy.

For a long time I couldn't decide who was winning. #39...Rac8 is the move that hangs Gashimov upside down. It ought to rank as one of the better games of Grischuk.

Well chosen for a GOTD.

Jun-01-12  LoveThatJoker: <FSR> Thank you!!

There is magnificent engine analysis on this game here by <Albertan> with the most up-to-date version of Rybka at the time:


Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Black marches all the way to b1-and his side wins! Black must have found an antidote to the "poisoned pawn".
Jun-01-12  anjyplayer: Great game at the highest level, should be in the CHESS HALL OF FAME by Irving Chernev.
Premium Chessgames Member
  eternaloptimist: <LTJ> congrats on your pun getting selected for GOTD!! It's a great game & great courage was shown by last year's runner-up in the world cup knockout tournament to determine a challenger for anand!! This game reminded me of short's king march game even though they are very different.: Short vs Timman, 1991
Jun-06-12  LoveThatJoker: <eternaloptimist> Thanks, man! You are right in bringing up Short vs Timman, 1991 as a classic example of an inspiring and winning King-walk!

There is another one which is also reminiscent of The Tightrope Game: R T Cardoso vs Petrosian, 1975


Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: Well I'll be...its a typical Najdorf.
Jun-13-14  siamesedream: Grischuk called this as his best game (during Norway Chess 2014).
Oct-20-14  fisayo123: Really? He once said a draw he had with Svidler in 2007 was his favourite game.
Aug-09-15  SpiritedReposte: This is about as complicated as it gets. The kind of game you just don't know what the true evaluation is move to move.
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