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Walter Shawn Browne vs Vivek Rao
"How Now, Browne-Rao?" (game of the day May-01-2017)
88th US Open (1987), Portland, OR USA, rd 7, Aug-09
Gruenfeld Defense: Exchange. Spassky Variation (D87)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: Maybe I'm missing something but it looks to me like black made too many unnecessary concessions. For example, he should have played 17...Re8 18. Bb5 Bd7 and so what, why give the exchange? Also 28... Rf6 seems a lot more prudent that Rh3. It's true that would allow 29. Rc8 but white can reply Nd8 and get rid of the annoying bishop and the attack on g8 at the same time. White's own K is too exposed to allow wasting too much time setting up an attack.
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: White rabbits.
May-01-17  tonim: I used to play this variation with black pieces and I dont like 16...b6. I think 16...a6 is much better because white cant win exchange back with Bh6 + Bb5, bishop can go to f7 instead of d7 preventing both e5 and any king side attack, and black plan is simple b5, Rc8, Nc4 with active play.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Ironmanth: Nice game by Walter, and great to see one by Vivek Rao, though a loss. Sorry as always that Walter is gone; the man was entertaining! Thanks for this one, chessgames!
May-01-17  sachman19: why simply gave rook for bishop
Premium Chessgames Member
  catlover: <ChessHigherCat> The alternate lines you suggest do look better than what was played.

In the game black seemed worse off after 25 e5. So maybe another try might be 23...e6 or even 23...e5 to dislodge the knight and head off a future pawn push by Browne to e5.

May-01-17  Granny O Doul: 39. Qf6 looks game-ending, but I guess Browne was short of time.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: <catlover>. Hola Caro amigo gatófilo! 23. e5 looks interesting but it's very complex. What does the Monolithic Fishstick say?
Premium Chessgames Member
  catlover: <ChessHigherCat> Well, let's pull out the old fish-smelling silicon monolith and see what it says. If Rao would have played 23...e5, the program rates the position as + (0.44*) Depth 32/46, 24 Nc6 (1/35 1551 kN/s. I confess I don't understand most of that notation, but do gather that it gives Browne a slight edge. Once Browne played e5 in the game, his edge jumped to over 1.00.

A possible continuation of 23...e5 might be 24. Nc6 Nxc6 25. Bxc6 Rf7 26. Rc1 Rc7. The position according to Stockfish stays about the same, although I confess I don't like black's prospects of dealing with that passed d-pawn in the later endgame.

Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: <catlover> It looks like your idea is good then, with the benevolent approval of Big Brother Fishstick. I don't understand that what all that goobledy-gook means either. I suspect it's like the little stars they used to put instead the P in Playboy Magazine to show how many times Hef did it with the centerfold.

Anyway, sorry I didn't give a personal analysis but I know I could never beat Walter Browne with black so I hesitate to give advice :-)

Premium Chessgames Member
  catlover: No problem, <CHC>. Your thoughts, with or without analysis, are always welcome.

<Blunderclap> 24...exd6 is not possible in the alternate line contemplated. Were you looked at 24 d5xe6 en passant as an alternative to 24 Nc6?

Premium Chessgames Member
  ajk68: Black showed "first fear" around move 17. He must have been intimidated.
May-02-17  TheBish: Browne missed a quicker win with 36. Qf6. No doubt he was in time pressure, and couldn't be sure he wasn't allowing a perpetual check, but the checks run out, after which White is mating or winning big material, like queen for rook.
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