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Tal at the USSR Clubs Team Championship 1966
Compiled by jessicafischerqueen
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This collection is part of Game Collection: Tal's Tournament and Matches 1949-1973

These are all the games Mikhail Tal played at the <USSR Clubs Team Championship 1966>, dated and in correct round order.1

This year's edition was held in Moscow (24 Sept - 5 Oct) without any preliminary rounds. Latvia was seeded directly into the "A" finals, where Tal would compete on 1st board against the top Soviet grandmasters.2 He remarked that "The end of the year was crowded with events...", and it certainly was.3 Immediately prior to the team championship, Tal won a four game training match against David Bronstein (19-20 Sept), and the championship would be followed by both the <Havana Olympiad 1966> (25 Oct - 20 Nov) and Palma de Mallorca (1966) (27 Nov - 18 Dec).4

Tal opened with a 16 move "grandmaster draw" against Boris Spassky, but pressed hard against Efim Geller and Oleg L Chernikov, without success. He took a 16 move rest against Leonid Stein, and then sparred warily for 29 moves with the ever dangerous Tigran Vartanovich Petrosian, before agreeing to his 5th straight draw. Tal took another short draw against Vasily Smyslov before finally posting a win against the Uzbeki international master Isaak Birbrager. After drawing Anatoly S Lutikov in the next round, Tal faced arch rival Mikhail Botvinnik for only the second time in a tournament game. This would be the last game they ever played together, and it was a sweet one for Tal. He took the white pieces and broke Botvinnik's pet line in the Caro Kan with a positional masterpiece. In the middle game Tal was only up by a pawn, but held a significant advantage.5

Position after 29.Nc4-d6


click for larger view

Tal never lost a game, but his final score of +2 -0 =8 was only good enough to share the 1st board bronze medal with Petrosian, behind Botvinnik and Geller.6 Daugava finished 6th, behind Soviet Army, Trud, Spartak, Burevestnik and Avangard, ahead of Lokomotiv, Moldova and Kalev.7

Notes

1 Rounds and games dated from: Hilary Thomas, "Complete Games of Mikhail Tal 1960-1966" (Arco 1979), pp.142-144; Alexander Khalifman, ed. "Mikhail Tal Games II" (Chess Stars 1995), pp.142-146

2 Olimpbase "5th Soviet Team Chess Cup: Moscow 1966-Basic Information" http://www.olimpbase.org/1966sc/196...

3 Mikhail Tal, "The Life and Games of Mikhail Tal" (Cadogan 1997), p.334

4 Di Felice, "Chess Results 1964-1967," pp.289-290, 322,333

5 Olimpbase "5th Soviet Team Chess Cup: Moscow 1966-Daugava" http://www.olimpbase.org/1966sc/196...

6 Rusbase "Team Championship of USSR- Moscow 1966" [rusbase-1]

7 Olimpbase "5th Soviet Team Chess Cup: Moscow 1966-The Final Group" http://www.olimpbase.org/1966sc/196...

===

More "Tal at the USSR Team Championships":

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Clubs Team Championship 1954

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Republics Team Championship 1955

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Republics Team Championship 1959

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Clubs Team Championship 1961

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Republics Team Championship 1962

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Republics Team Championship 1963

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Clubs Team Championship 1964

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Republics Team Championship 1967

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Clubs Team Championship 1968

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Clubs Team Championship 1971

Game Collection: Tal at the USSR Republics Team Championship 1972

Round 1- Daugava vs Lokomotiv
Tal vs Spassky, 1966
(A13) English, 16 moves, 1/2-1/2

Round 2- Daugava vs. Soviet Army
Geller vs Tal, 1966
(D30) Queen's Gambit Declined, 39 moves, 1/2-1/2

Round 3- Daugava vs Vodnik
Tal vs O Chernikov, 1966 
(E04) Catalan, Open, 5.Nf3, 65 moves, 1/2-1/2

Round 4- Daugava vs Avangard
Stein vs Tal, 1966
(E15) Queen's Indian, 16 moves, 1/2-1/2

Round 6- Daugava vs Spartak
Tal vs Petrosian, 1966 
(B14) Caro-Kann, Panov-Botvinnik Attack, 29 moves, 1/2-1/2

Round 7- Daugava vs Mekhnat
Birbrager vs Tal, 1966 
(A79) Benoni, Classical, 11.f3, 59 moves, 0-1

Round 8- Daugava vs Burevestnik
Tal vs Smyslov, 1966
(C84) Ruy Lopez, Closed, 22 moves, 1/2-1/2

Round 9- Daugava vs Moldova
Lutikov vs Tal, 1966
(C28) Vienna Game, 22 moves, 1/2-1/2

Round 10- Daugava vs Trud
Tal vs Botvinnik, 1966 
(B14) Caro-Kann, Panov-Botvinnik Attack, 45 moves, 1-0

Round 11- Daugava vs Kalev
Keres vs Tal, 1966 
(C49) Four Knights, 17 moves, 1/2-1/2

10 games

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