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True Sacrifices (Attacking)
Compiled by patzer2

Most books of chess combinations usually feature piece sacrfices that are in reality sham sacrifices or pseudo sacrfices, which lead to a forced advantage or win for the player initiating the attack. However, in strong Master play (such as the games of Tal) one often sees true sacrifices where the player initiating the sacrifice gains a promising attacking initiative, but takes a clear risk to do so as there is no clear winning advantage in sight. The purpose of this collection is to facilitate the enjoyment and study of these true attacking sacrfices.

30. Bxe6!? and 36. Rxd6!?
Gong Qianyun vs Zhao Xue, 2006 
(B53) Sicilian, 47 moves, 1-0

12. Qxf6!?
R Nezhmetdinov vs O Chernikov, 1962 
(B32) Sicilian, 33 moves, 1-0

18...a5!? is a true sacrifice that White declines
Morozevich vs Vitiugov, 2007 
(B48) Sicilian, Taimanov Variation, 71 moves, 0-1

13. Bxh6!? is a demolition of pawn structure combo
Smagin vs N N Monin, 1986 
(D45) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 28 moves, 1-0

13...Rxc3!! catches Shirov by surprise (16. Qg3 = improves)
Shirov vs Anand, 2008 
(B96) Sicilian, Najdorf, 30 moves, 0-1

12. Qxe8+!
Mikhalchishin vs Pavasovic, 1999  
(D45) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 30 moves, 1-0

10. Nd5!? trades Knight for a pawn for attacking development
Hector vs J Carstensen, 2003 
(B96) Sicilian, Najdorf, 75 moves, 1-0

11...Nxd5!? sacs the Queen for two minor pieces and a pawn
Bobotsov vs Tal, 1958 
(E81) King's Indian, Samisch, 30 moves, 0-1

29. Bb1!? allows 29...Ne2+ with an interesting exchange sac
Tiviakov vs K Miton, 2007 
(C72) Ruy Lopez, Modern Steinitz Defense, 5.O-O, 52 moves, 1-0

28. h5!? sacs a queen-side pawn for a King-side attack
V Eingorn vs Zilberman, 1994 
(A41) Queen's Pawn Game (with ...d6), 43 moves, 1-0

15. Rf3!? is a fascinating and difficult attacking sacrifice
Mitkov vs Rublevsky, 2000 
(B43) Sicilian, Kan, 5.Nc3, 25 moves, 1-0

21...Re5!? worked out for Black, but only after 67. Qc5?
Bareev vs V Akopian, 2000 
(E41) Nimzo-Indian, 70 moves, 0-1

14. f5!? sacrifices a piece for a strong but unclear attack
Bologan vs P Schlosser, 2004 
(B84) Sicilian, Scheveningen, 26 moves, 1-0

Karpov vs Ulf Andersson, 1975 
(B44) Sicilian, 79 moves, 0-1

22. d5!? gives winning chances with draw likely vs. best play
A Giri vs F A Cuijpers, 2009 
(D17) Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, 40 moves, 1-0

24. d5!? yields an attack but is weaker than 24. QxQ! +-
Stoltz vs H Steiner, 1952 
(A21) English, 34 moves, 1-0

33. Ng3?! is unsound, but the wins Black missed are instructive
B Lengyel vs N A Adams, 2006 
(C23) Bishop's Opening, 56 moves, 1-0

23...Nxg2!? courageous move (!!) creates decisive complications
Gelfand vs Nakamura, 2010 
(E97) King's Indian, 33 moves, 0-1

27. Rxd5!? wins only after 30...Qxd5?? (better was 27. Bg5!)
G Kuzmin vs Alterman, 1989 
(B76) Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack, 37 moves, 1-0

15. Nd5!? = sacrifices the Knight for a complex attack
Nakamura vs Van Wely, 2010 
(B96) Sicilian, Najdorf, 39 moves, 1-0

11...d4!? sets up 15...Bxc3! =
Tiviakov vs Shirov, 2010 
(B25) Sicilian, Closed, 31 moves, 0-1

21. Nf5!? takes a "strategic risk" as Black misses 27...Kh7! -+
Topalov vs Grischuk, 2010 
(B90) Sicilian, Najdorf, 69 moves, 1-0

27...Rxe3!? or 27...Rxe3!! if you can figure it out
Lilienthal vs Ragozin, 1935 
(E24) Nimzo-Indian, Samisch, 47 moves, 0-1

12. Nd5! sacs a piece to wreck pawn structure & attack
Jobava vs H H Hernandez, 2008 
(B96) Sicilian, Najdorf, 35 moves, 1-0

Y Drozdovskij vs S Grishchenko, 2010 
(D34) Queen's Gambit Declined, Tarrasch, 50 moves, 0-1

12...exd4!? followed by 13...Bxe5!? creates huge complications
K Haznedaroglu vs J Isaev, 2010 
(C69) Ruy Lopez, Exchange, Gligoric Variation, 22 moves, 0-1

10. e6! is a true sacrifice for most human players
Balashov vs R Sabjanov, 1994 
(B25) Sicilian, Closed, 22 moves, 1-0

17. Qh4! takes an essential risk to bust up Black's pawn chain
A H Wohl vs Gipslis, 1996 
(A30) English, Symmetrical, 32 moves, 1-0

22...Rxc5!? was worthy of a brilliancy game collection
Szabo vs G Sigurjonsson, 1968 
(D47) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 40 moves, 0-1

20. Qxb4!
Kramnik vs Ponomariov, 2011 
(E94) King's Indian, Orthodox, 42 moves, 1-0

27...Nc4!? may be refuted by 29. Rxd4 ! but it's worth of study
G Meier vs Kramnik, 2011 
(E15) Queen's Indian, 32 moves, 0-1

36. Rc5!! maybe Tal saw it all, but for mel it's unclear
Tal vs Hjartarson, 1987 
(C97) Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin, 43 moves, 1-0

12. Nd5!? sacs a piece for a complicated Tal-like attack
Chiburdanidze vs Dvoirys, 1980 
(B96) Sicilian, Najdorf, 29 moves, 1-0

17...Nxf2!? is a clever desperado demolition sacrifice
W Schmidt vs Henley, 1983 
(D44) Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, 27 moves, 0-1

24...h6!? creates huge complications
M Mchedlishvili vs R Sangma, 2014 
(E04) Catalan, Open, 5.Nf3, 38 moves, 0-1

L Engel vs D Semcesen, 2015 
(C41) Philidor Defense, 63 moves, 0-1

8. Bxf7+!? leads to equality with perfect computer play
F Montoliu Cervero vs P Lasinskas, 2009 
(C41) Philidor Defense, 19 moves, 1-0

24. Ng5!
S Fedorchuk vs Dorfman, 2015 
(C65) Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense, 40 moves, 1-0

Ivanchuk vs S Shankland, 2017 
(E15) Queen's Indian, 50 moves, 1-0

39 games

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