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Khosro Harandi vs Yuri S Balashov
Rio de Janeiro Interzonal (1979), Rio de Janeiro BRA, rd 6, Sep-29
Sicilian Defense: Richter-Rauzer. Classical Variation (B64)  ·  0-1

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 1 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Feb-26-05  yoozum: Wow, I totally missed this puzzle. I guess that's what makes it a good Sunday puzzle. The only Sunday puzzle I solved correctly was the one from two weeks ago, without a board, to boot!
Feb-26-05  notsodeepthought: 20 ... c4! wins because if the bishop moves (e.g., 21 B:c4), then 21 ... Q:c3+ and white can resign.
Feb-26-05  Milo: Yah, I thought it'd be 20...Qxc3 but couldn't find anything after the king hid behind the bishop.
Feb-26-05  aw1988: <yoozum> This is a Saturday puzzle.
Feb-26-05  minimaxing: 20... c4 wins a bishop.

Kept thinking it would be a queen sac, but the king could escape to safety via d2. So I figured the bishop needed to be moved... and voila, c4 jumps out. After 21. QxQ exQ, white cannot save the two minor pieces.

Feb-26-05  pastpawn: <notsodeepthought> Hmm... 21 Be2 is stronger than 21 Bxc4, though because the White King has c4 as a flight square. 21 Be2 Qxc3+ 22 Kxc3 exf4+ 23 Kxc4 Ba6+ 24 Nb5 (24 Kc5 Be7+ 25 Kc6 Rbc8#) and now I think Rxb5 wins.
Feb-26-05  notsodeepthought: <pastpawn> 24 Nb5 cannot be played - you ate the knight in question at move 21 ....
Feb-26-05  murraygd13: Where does the Nb5 come from? The knight was taken by the queen in move 21.

20...c4, 21. Be2 Qxc3+ 22 Kxc3 exf4+ 23 Kxc4 Ba6+ 24 Kc5 Be7+ 25 Kc6 Rbc8#

Feb-26-05  pastpawn: <notsodeepthought> You're right: That'll teach me not to have a board out while posting! To spell it out fully, White's lovely choices after 22 ... exf4+ are:

23 Kxc4, leading to mate in the line I gave. (Or via 23 ... Be6+ 24 Kc5 Be7+ 25 Kc6 Rdc8#, which is a little prettier, IMHO).

23 e5 Bxe5+ 24 Kxc4 Be6+ 25 Kc5 Rdc8#

23 Qd4 Bxd4+ 24 Kd2 (24 Kxc4 Ba6# is too pretty) Bf2+ 25 Kc1 fxg3

Feb-26-05  patzer2: For today's puzzle solution, Black's 20...c4! uses a clever combination of a deflection and a pair of pins to force the win.

Of course it's a winning double attack leaving Black up a piece after 21. Qxd4 exd4 . The pin comes into play as the capture of the pawn on c4 leads to even more miserable possibilities for Black.

Feb-26-05  murraygd13: After 20..c4 21. Qxd4 exd4 22. Nd5 cxd3 23. Nxf6+ gxf6 24. cxd3. White can gain some back by forcing Black to double the pawns but still a lost position with Chessmaster giving Black a 1.5 pawn advantage.
Feb-26-05  arenafootball9: ..c4 is a key move but I think Rxb3 might be the best first move. I saw.. axb3, Qb4 then..fxe5, Bxe5,..Qe1? (what else) then Be6 making bunkbed bishops...cant see another move for Black-Then c4 seems unstoppable. This was my initial thought and I think it forces more lively play with a more logical finish. Maybe not though...I have no ego here and it would be great to hear a better analysis:)
Feb-26-05  murraygd13: White would block in the black e pawn by moving the f pawn from f4 to f5. In your variation. White wouldn't do fxe5 allowing Bxe5
Feb-26-05  Pantagruel: I got the first 20 moves of this puzzle right but I missed 40 ... axb3. Does that count?
Feb-26-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: The combination reminds me of the deeds of a pickpocket;it seems that nothing was happening and suddenly-white had two pieces under fire and lost one of them!
Feb-26-05  yoozum: <<yoozum> This is a Saturday puzzle>

Lol, good point. It seems I have some other issues besides not being able to solve this puzzle.

Feb-26-05  twitter: i, for one, think this is an amazing combination. i find the resulting mate after 21. Bxc4 (or anywhere else) to be extremely pleasing. i personally didn't get this one. i went for ..Qxc3 but got hung up after the king went behind the bishop. very, very pretty!
Feb-26-05  Hektor: I am impressed by how well black created weaknesses in white's pawn structure then exploited them with the double bishop. I so focused on looking at possibilities around 20. ...Qxc3 that I failed to give 20. ...c4! appropriate attention. That's probably why Balashov's name is in here and not mine! Very nice puzzle.
Feb-26-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: A good, practical pattern: A nifty way to stop such an Q-exchange (or other piece exchange) sometimes. Of course, here White has to give up his piece because if 21.Be2 Qxc3+ 22.Kxc3 then exf4+ 23.Kxc4 Be6+ 24.Kc5 Be7+ 25.Kc6 Rdc8#.
Feb-26-05  maxundmoritz: It's a very interesting game. Move 30.a3 was a mistake and 30...Bd5 with the double attack on b3 seems to be the best answer, because 31.exd5 Rxb3+ and White has no good defenses. Other options don't look any better for White.
Feb-26-05  Happypuppet: 20... c4!... In my opinion, the move isn't truly difficult to see. I suppose it's a Saturday puzzle to be deceptive: I was calculating all sorts of sacrifices (a wild one can be expected on a weekend) and simply couldn't find one that worked. =P
Feb-26-05  minimaxing: <Happypuppet> The reason c4 is so effective is because of the threat of the queen sac. The bishop is pinned by the threat of mate. If 21. Bxc4, then black has a forced mate after 21... QxN. Likewise, if 21. Be2, mate is once again forced by 21... QxN. While these variations weren't played in the game, you needed to calculate them to play c4, so I think this is an appropriate Saturday puzzle.
Feb-26-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: <minimaxing> I agree with you. I think it is a fairly tough move to find (though not so hard to compute). The c4 being it a pawn move, it is naturally harder to see. It does not transparently open a line for a piece like, say, exf4 does. And there also is such a sense of urgency in the position, because of the pending Q-exchange, that, at a superficial glance, c4 just looks wimpy.
Feb-26-05  CFC rating: I've been doing these puzles everyday for a week and this is the only one I didn't get...
Feb-27-05  JL2: nowhere near
to be honest i looked at pawn c5-c4 for 5 seconds before moving on
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