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Ravi Gopal Hegde vs Semon Palatnik
Koyenco GM tournament (1988)  ·  Queen's Indian Defense: Kasparov-Petrosian Variation (E17)  ·  1-0
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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  SuperPatzer77: Hey, <JimfromProvidence>! You must have made a typo - the dark-colored b8-a2 diagonal. It should be the b8-h2 diagonal.

Don't worry about the typo you've made, <JimfromProvidence>.

<JimfromProvidence> You're absolutely right that Black cannot force the White Rook off of the 7th rank so, Black has to give up his own bishop for the White a-pawn.


Feb-25-10  msmith5: This one took me a long time, but here's what I'm thinking.

Black must play to draw.

He can't take the pawn, Bxa7 is met by Rxa7+ and mate to follow shortly K+R vs K.

Black's king is stalemated, so white cannot take the black bishop unless he does so with check.

If the bishop moves off the a1-h8 diagonal, white wins with Rh8, which is either mate immediately or mate after a useless bishop interposition.

So, black's choices are limited to bishop moves along the a1-h8 diagonal.

To complicate things, white threatens Rg7 followed by Rg8 with mate to follow, Re7 followed by Re8 with mate to follow, and Rc7 followed by Rc8 with mate to follow. These are all decisive since c8, e8, g8 are all white squares. The only move to prevent all three of these moves is Bg7.

If white takes the bishop, it's statemate. All other attempts to get the rook on the back rank take three moves (down the h-file, over to a new file, and then to the back rank), whereas it only takes two moves for black to grab the a-pawn, after which time he will have a useful interposition with his bishop on b8.

For example, some variations:
... Bg7!
Rh4 Bd4!
Rxd4 stalemate

... Bg7!
Rh4 Bd4!
Rg4 Bxa7
Rg8+ Bb8 with a drawn endgame R vs B
(same for Re4 or Rf4)

... Bg7!
Rh3 Bd4
Rh7 with draw by repetition to follow
Same for Rhx for x=1,2,3,5,6

... Bg7
Rh3 Bd4 and Bxa7 for any move other than Rh7.

I think this will draw in all variations; but I've never gotten a Thursday puzzle before, so it wouldn't surprise me if I missed something.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: <SuperPatzer77> You are right. I meant the b8-h2 diagonal. Thanks for catching that.

I also failed to mention the source of the winning moves I posted for white to win on move 58, which are the Nalimov table bases.

Feb-25-10  Samagonka: so where's the solution?
Feb-25-10  Samagonka: Oh and sorry to hear about Zechiel's eye problem. Wishing him a quick recovery. I have so much esteem for his analytic skills that his are always the first posts I read on CG before I move on to the others.
Premium Chessgames Member
  lost in space: Haven't got it. Stupid me
Feb-25-10  wals: White stumbled on move 55.Kb5
One alternative move was

55. (#16) Rf8 Ka7 56. Kb5 Bd6 57. Rf7+ Kb8 58. Kb6 Ka8 59. Ra7+ Kb8 60. Rd7 Bc5+ 61. Kxc5 Kc8 62. Rb7 Kd8 63. a7 Ke8 64. a8=Q# 1-0

Courtesy of Rybka 3 1-cpu : 3071mb hash: depth 20:

Feb-25-10  njchess: I suspect Black missed the drawing aspects of the position and resigned due to time constraints (it is move 59 which means he is likely near time control), and the general hopelessness of the position. Or, he simply failed to meet time control.

Regardless, after move 25 Black finds himself in a complex endgame with a bishop and a rook pawn versus a rook with all other things being equal. Although Black manages to gain another pawn, they are too spread out to be effective. His bishop is tied up blocking White's advancing pawn leaving his knight to fend off White's rook. By move 42, he is caught in a zugzwang. The best he could do at this point would be to draw. Tough to do if you are facing time control.

Feb-25-10  sfm: A stalemated king is a very powerful defensive resource when you only have one piece left. White forgot it, but to his luck, Black did too.
Feb-25-10  sfm: <chrisowen: Does Bg7 hedge against any risk? The diplomacy is winning a stalemate if rook swaps bishop. The other option is defence with Kc6 i.e. 60.Kb5 Bd4 Kc6 Bxa7 Rh8+ Bb8.

The enclosure it will diminish, rubbing off black's fortress yet he should hold hitherto

Fantastic! The spoon-salesman from Fawlty Towers "The Hotel Inspectors" is still alive and playing chess!

Premium Chessgames Member
  pittpanther: I want to echo the sentiments for David's rapid recovery. I enjoy reading his posts!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eisenheim: <dzechiel> - get well soon! stop looking at the computer!!!! especially if your playing white for BOB3.
Feb-25-10  MaczynskiPratten: <dzechiel>, may I add my best wishes for a rapid recovery as well.
Feb-25-10  BraveUlysses: This is a very intriguing puzzle.

It is so interesting how the black B can block the white R from any move along the 7th rank other than the stalemating Rxg7 (any of which would free him to force mate on the 8th rank), and then Bd4 threatens to win the P, forcing the R to defend on h7 again, and potentially back and forth, but a stalemate or drawn game can only ensue.

Other tries end in drawn K+R vs K+B endings: 59...Bg7! 60. Kb5 Bd4 wins the P. or 60.Kb6 Bd4+ 61.Kc7 Bxa7 62.Kc8 Bd4 63.Rh4 Bd7 and again the R and B are dancing in phase to a draw.

This puzzle also makes me think perhaps we should play to the end more often- I would normally resign quickly if I found myself with a B versus R+P, time notwithstanding.

Feb-26-10  turbo231: I love this puzzle even though i failed to solve it. I got the first move right i was trying for a stalemate or a draw but didn't know how to go about it. Semon had a draw but for some reason he lost.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <dzechiel> Sorry to hear about your injury. Keeping you in prayer for a full recovery soon.

Got the initial move 59...Bg7 =, but wasn't sure about the followup. However, <TheBish> and <johnlspouge> have provided excellent, concise explanations of the drawing technique.

Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: <sfm: The spoons-salesman..> Ok the owner's one Basil Fawlty isnt he. It leads way in handling such a crazy pig, and tongue and cheek good for a laugh. Basil always mufs it, xcellent comedy. Fancy a game of chess table tennis? time.
Sep-04-10  LIFE Master AJ: <<SamAtoms1980> . . . . Oh my . . . . he resigned! Well, it's good to know that not a single one of us is going to do worse.>

Maybe Black lost on time?

Sep-04-10  LIFE Master AJ: First of all, I remember this position, I think it stemmed from a study of R. Fine's, "Basic Chess Endings." (A massive book, I have the updated version.)

I was not 100% convinced that Black could draw, however, just a few minutes with Fritz 12 erased any doubts:

***** ***** ***** ***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****

59.Ka6 Bg7! 60.Rh3,
White must play something here ...

(Or 60.Rxg7, Stalemate.)

60...Bd4; 61.Rd3 Bxa7; 62.Rd8+ Bb8; 63.Rd7,

(Or 63.Kb6, Stalemate.)

63...Be5; 64.Rd8+ Bb8; 65.Kb5 Ka7; 66.Rd7+ Ka8; 67.Kb6 Be5; 68.Rd8+ Bb8; 69.Kc6 Ka7; 70.Rd7+ Ka8!▢ (best); Black must play this.

(But not: </= 70...Ka6?; 71.Rd5! Ba7; 72.Rd1 Ka5; 73.Ra1+ Kb4; 74.RxB/a7, " " and White is winning.)

71.Kd5, "=" Draw.

***** ***** ***** ***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****

Another point is that this is all a <<"TABLE-BASE">> endgame, i.e., the computer does not have to stop and think. (Endings with five pieces or less have been analyzed out by super-computers and saved in a file called a "tablebase." This is nothing more than every possible position/move/reply has already been PRE-ANALYZED by the computer.)

If you don't believe me, take out your favorite engine/program.

Set up an endgame that I have a position named after me. ("THE GOLDSBY POSITION," - its in several Russian endgame books - King-plus-Queen vs. King-plus-Rook.) Try setting up 10 or 20 different positions. Your computer (and program) if properly configured, will NEVER stop to think, but will automatically spit out the best move.

Oct-19-12  vinidivici: Poor Palatnik.
59...Bg7!!!!!!!!!! DRAW
Premium Chessgames Member
  wwall: The diagram of this final position appeared in Chess Informant #45 (1988), in the endgame section, #5, page 382. It is given as Hegde (2315) - Palatnik (2490). The solution for #5 says: 1:0?? [1...Bg7 2.Rh4 Bd4! =] by R. Hernandez.

Edward Winter covers this in his Chess Notes 1740 and Chess Explorations (p. 23). Winter says that Rene Olthof writes that this games was Hedge (sic)-Palatnik, "...which is a neat addition to C.N. 1658. In fact, it is an exact mirror image of the annotation given to Gusev v Zhukhovitsky, Alma Ata, 1958."

The position was White: Ka1, Be4, Black: Kb3, Rh2, Pa2.

click for larger view

The difference is the Black King is on b3 instead of a3. White played 70.Bg2?? Ka3! 71.Bf1 Rc2, winning, instead of 70.Bd5+! Ka3 (now a mirror image of the game) 71.Bg2 Rh5 72.Bd5.

A similar study appeared in La Strategie, 1923, by Mouterde. White: Ka1, Bb7, Ph7. Black: Ka3, Rb8, Pa2.

click for larger view

White to play draws after 1.h8=Q Rxh8 2.Bd5 Rh2 3.Bg2 drawn.

Nov-26-12  vinidivici: <The diagram of this final position appeared in Chess Informant #45 (1988), in the endgame section, #5, page 382. It is given as Hegde (2315) - Palatnik (2490). The solution for #5 says: 1:0?? [1...Bg7 2.Rh4 Bd4! =] by R. Hernandez. Edward Winter covers this in his Chess Notes 1740 and Chess Explorations (p. 23). Winter says that Rene Olthof writes that this games was Hedge (sic)-Palatnik, "...which is a neat addition to C.N. 1658. In fact, it is an exact mirror image of the annotation given to Gusev v Zhukhovitsky, Alma Ata, 1958."> WOW.

If you got the proper study from the basic, once you reach the intermediate level, its in the curriculum. I forget whats the guidebook i used to learn this position.

The only thing a master or GM made a mistake like the game above is the pressure of the game, by no means he hasnt get the position before in their studies.

Nov-26-12  SimonWebbsTiger: <vinidivici>

or stress and tiredness. Legendary Lajos Portisch resigned a similar R+RP v. B endgame a couple of years ago.

Lajos was tired because it was the third round of Politiken Cup, ie. the double round Saturday and his blood sugar was bad. Portisch has diabetes.

Nov-27-12  vinidivici: <Simon>

You kind of know a lot about chess and the players.

Good conversation though. Hope you can reveal the condition of Karpov, he becomes fatter and fatter.

Huffff, the day still young. But i think this is my final post of the day. Got to do something.

Nov-27-12  SimonWebbsTiger: <vinidivici>

I was playing in the tournament. I bought Portisch a glass of wine in the hotel bar after the round as a consolation. Very nice man with a wealth of anecdotes.

As for knowing a lot about chess....Well, I am constantly amazed at how little I know or understand about the game even though I started taking chess seriously after the British U-18 Championship back in 1988!

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