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Mikhail Botvinnik vs David Bronstein
Training Match Tournament (1952), URS
Queen's Gambit Declined: General (D30)  ·  1-0



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Given 10 times; par: 72 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Feb-01-04  Benjamin Lau: Is there anything wrong with 8. g4 instead of Bd3?
Feb-01-04  Catfriend: I didn't get you this time... g4 is already played on the 7th move...
Feb-01-04  Benjamin Lau: g5 I meant, oops. That Bronstein himself plays the weakening g5 (black tends to have more problems than white when he/she plays this) right after Botvinnik gives him the chance suggests to me that such a move is positionally undesirable for black, yet I fail to see why Botvinnik did not play g5 earlier instead of Bd3. Perhaps he really didn't expect Bronstein to play g5 in anticipation.
Feb-01-04  Catfriend: such pawns as the white g5 in your variation tend to be over-extended and weak later, though here mybe h4 would support g5. Yet, the nice f5-square for ♘g8 may be a compensation for the pressure g5 causes. And Botvinnik wants Bronstein to play g5 as black, so it's a provocation!
Feb-01-04  Benjamin Lau: I agree with your post although I think that an early g5 tends more often than not to be okay, although maybe I'm thinking too much in King's Indian mode. ;-) Did Bronstein really have to play the provocative ...g5!? though. Hmm, I think maybe ...h6 could have sufficed, that's what people usually do in the Keres Attack Scheveningen for example.
Feb-01-04  Catfriend: g5 as in King's Indian ideas is good with a more closed center, so I wouldn't play it, at least. And yes, h6 seems to be O.K., without too much weakness on the K-side. And still as I said f5 and g6 are a weakness...

8.g5 ♘e7 9.h4 ♘g6 10.♗g3 ♗e7 looks O.K for black

Feb-01-04  ughaibu: I dont like black's 16th, shouldn't he castle long at that point?
Feb-01-04  Catfriend: Bronstein tarried too much with the castling, that's right
Feb-01-04  Benjamin Lau: Catfriend, g5 is actually much more common in open games than you would expect. White almost always plays it in the Keres when black doesn't play ...h6. There is a similar line in the Najdorf I think for this. Don't forget the Semi-Slav Shabalov-Shirov gambit either, white often plays g5 if black doesn't do anything. Other than that, I think you're perfectly right that g5 should be delayed, it should be played only after Bronstein plays the knight to f6 (that's actually how it is in the opening examples that I mentioned earlier- it's not how closed or open the game is that matters, it matters if the knight is on f6 yet, which I neglected!), so that Botvinnik can gain a tempo kicking it instead of having Bronstein reorganize appropriately with ...Ne7 after white's premature g5. The more I look at it, the more I don't like Bronstein's ...g5. I agree with ughaibu that Bronstein should also have castled earlier. Bronstein has a painful position after white's 22. e5.
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: The heading to this game says 'Training'. Training for what?
Jan-18-05  sneaky pete: <offramp> If I'm not mistaken, there was a training/selection tournament for the Helsinki 1952 Olympiad. World Champion Botvinnik was finally left out of the Olympiad team because ... he wasn't good enough at the time, according to his fellow grandmasters. I remember reading somewhere that Botvinnik wasn't to pleased with this verdict. The Soviet team in Helsinki consisted of Keres, Smyslov, Bronstein, Geller, Boleslavsky and Kotov. Maybe the story is different, they wouldn't let him play on board one, so he refused to play at all.
Sep-29-13  Ulhumbrus: 7 g4? disturbs the king side without necessity and gives Black the advantage. However it may take theory - meaning masterly experience- a long time, perhaps decades, to find the right answer for Black.

Instead of 8...g5 8...Nb6 makes way for ...Bd6

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