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David Bronstein vs Mikhail Botvinnik
Botvinnik - Bronstein World Championship Match (1951), Moscow URS, rd 22, May-06
Dutch Defense: Classical Variation (A91)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Mar-31-07  Ulhumbrus: Tartakower called this the most beautiful game of the match. I suggest that after seeing this masterpiece, Tartakower did not miss much by passing away in 1956 before the emergence of Bobby Fischer and the generations following Fischer.
Jun-19-07  talisman: looked at move 32 for white for about 5 min. never once thoght about g4.great move and leads to the win...brings the bishop into play.botvinnik quit the habit of keeping a diary after this.
Jul-16-07  dabearsrock1010: this absolutely needs to be game of the day and very is so beautiful... its the sort of game you watch and believe white was inspired by some great chess god on this day
Premium Chessgames Member
  PhilFeeley: <Gypsy: <The reason Bronstein did not beat Botvinnik was his endgame...> The reason has been revealed by Anthony Saidy in an interview published on Dec. 3. Another in the many, sad, Soviet stories:

Jan-29-08  talisman: <PhilFeeley> thanks for the link phil..."'re gonna carry that weight,carry that weight a long time.".JL.
Mar-23-08  Knight13: <And Bronstein, a real gentleman, honest, noble man, would undoubtedly have refused any tricky arrangements.> Somewhere around there, but Botvinnik tried hard crush Bronstein psychologically.
Sep-28-08  Everett: Best game of the match.
Apr-21-09  euripides: Interesting that Kasparov writes about this game. He deployed the killer P-KN4 two games later in his match with Karpov, when it was too late for his opponent to fight back from the shock:

Karpov vs Kasparov, 1985

Apr-23-09  WhiteRook48: why not 37...Bxg3?!
Apr-24-09  euripides: <whiterook> <37...Bxg3> 38.Qc3+ or Qb2+ and Black will be mated.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Nimzonick: Yeah, I didn't even consider 32.g4 either ... what a move!
Aug-31-10  echever7: <Suzuki50> I'm just sitting here wondering why a 'rematch' can't be considered a "real" match. Can anyone explain to me?

Great play by Bronstein. It's necessary take into account that Botvinnik was very busy at that time writing his Phd Thesis, three years was almost out of serious chess life, and (acording to Weinstein, a Botvinnik's "enemy") he was very upset about his mother's health during the match: she was hospitalized.

Aug-31-10  RandomVisitor: After 32.g4, black might equalize after 32...Qg7! 33.Rxe7 Qxe7.
Sep-01-10  RandomVisitor: After 31...Be8

click for larger view

Rybka 3

<[+0.41] d=25 32.Qd1> Qg7 33.Rxe7 Qxe7 34.Bxe4 dxe4 35.Bc3 Kg8 36.Qf1 Qe6 37.Ra7 Bxe5 38.dxe5 Rd8 39.Bd4 h6 40.Qf4 Rd7 41.Ra1 Kh7 42.Qh4 Bf7 43.Qf6 Qxf6 44.exf6 Kg6

Sep-01-10  RandomVisitor: After 32.g4 Qg7! 33.Rxe7 Qxe7:

click for larger view

<[+0.12] d=22 34.Ra2> Qe6 35.gxf5 Qxf5 36.Bxe4 Qxe4 37.Qd3 Qxd3 38.Nxd3 Bg6 39.Ne5 Rc8 40.Ra6 Bxe5 41.dxe5 Kg7 42.Ra7+ Kh6 43.e6 Bf5 44.e7 Kg6 45.Kf2 Kf7 46.Kf3 Ke8 47.Kf4 Bd7 48.Ke5

Jun-15-11  Everett: <Great play by Bronstein. It's necessary take into account that Botvinnik was very busy at that time writing his Phd Thesis, three years was almost out of serious chess life, and (acording to Weinstein, a Botvinnik's "enemy") he was very upset about his mother's health during the match: she was hospitalized.>

... and Botvinnik had 3 years of studying Bronstein's games and his choice of the best training partners in the world but remained off-balance for nearly the entire match.

His notes of Bronstein's games before the match, kindly provided by <ResignationTrap> are again and again superficial in assessment of Bronstein's play and ability, and this fact was a big part of his struggles in the match. He underestimated Bronstein's improvisation, his <scheming>, his concepts and his fighting spirit.

IMHO Bronstein only drew this match because he was very conflicted, internally, as he proved to be throughout his entire life, indeed to his death, it seems, which is a bit sad. Perhaps he was prescient, somehow "knowing" what happened to Smyslov in '58 and Tal in '61, which was total BS.

I would wish for him some peace with his amazing chess legacy and life, but I sense he didn't feel it.

Jul-23-11  shatranj7: 37.Bg3!! reminds me of Byrne-Fischer 1956 Be6!!
Sep-02-11  DrMAL: Fabulous game, it seemed to get increasingly complex after black played 28...Rab8 (instead of, say, 28...Qh6 to stay focused on the K-side). From the moves that followed 32.g4!! was amazingly clever, provoking 32...fxg4?! an "invisible" mistake. Here, black's best was to ignore it and play probably 32...Qg7 to attack the strong rook on a7, basically forcing a trade.

Bronstein brilliantly showed how 33.Bxe4 dxe4 34.Bh4! wins. To illustrate the complexity behind 32.g4!! I put this on Houdini and it did not compute how 34.Bh4! wins until several hours into it. It took Houdini an hour and over 10 billion positions to compute how 34.Bg3 probably also wins now that's complicated!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: Great game.
Feb-09-14  tranquilsimplicity: The eternal vulnerability of the a2-g8 diagonal in the Dutch defense. Exploited here to maximum effect. #
Jul-23-15  thulium: 38 . . . KxQ followed by?
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <Jul-23-15 thulium: 38 . . . KxQ followed by?> Taking rook on b8.
Premium Chessgames Member
  andrewjsacks: 39. Bxb8
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: <dabearsrock1010: this absolutely needs to be game of the day and very soon>

Yes, and I think <"Dutch Oven"> would be a great pun but I am concerned that would not allow such a title.

Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: Consecutive wins in games 21 and then in this game gave Bronstein the lead in the match for the only time. 6 e3 is an obscure, rarely played line that was used several times in the match. In the 16th game Botvinnik had played 8..Bd6; here he varied with 8..Ne4 which was new. 11 Qd3 was unnecessary; 11 f3 was a more thematic. A better way of taking advantage of the of the awkward placing of the queen on d3 would have been 11..Bd7 12 f3..Nxc3 13 Nxc3..Be8 14 e4..fxe 15 fxe..Bg6. 20..b5!? was very committal; 20..Bd7 was suggested by several as an alternative. 23..Ne4 at once would have been more precise. Botvinnik perhaps should have played 26..Bxf4 but he under estimated White's attacking potential. 32..fxg?! strengthened White's attack; 32..Bxe5 or 32..Rg7 were alternatives.

Beautiful game by Bronstein - probably the best game of the match.

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