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Oleg Neikirch vs Mikhail Botvinnik
Leipzig ol (Men) fin-A (1960), Leipzig GDR, rd 1, Oct-28
Sicilian Defense: Fischer-Sozin Attack. Leonhardt Variation (B88)  ·  0-1

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Dec-04-04  kostich in time: A neat win by Botvinnik in a Sicilian..it made Euwes "game of the month " column in Chess Review.
Dec-11-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: "The final position is interesting because although all the white and black pieces are situated on the edge of the board, Black's pieces are so far-ranging that there is no defence. From the point of view of composition the artistic influence would be stronger if Black's bishop were on a8." - Botvinnik
Nov-23-19
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: 20.Ra5 was a mistake allowing very elegant finish based on exploitation of position of the Rook and weak back rank. 20.Ra1 would have been better.
May-16-20
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: 11..dxe 12 fxe..Nd7 13 Rxf7 would be a disaster for Black. 12 Rf3 was a new move; 12 Be3 had been played previously.

Uhlmann after 17 Rd3:
"With his last move White occupied the open d-file. But this is only a partial success; since there are no entry squares available yet. White's main problem lies in the passivity of the c1 bishop; in the forseeable future there is no way for it to participate effectively in the game. As far as the pawn structure is concerned, it should be noted that the endgame will be unfavorable for White, since the doubled pawns on the b-file can be easily blocked. His exposed king's position bodes ill for White. The white king has no escape square, and if Black succeeds in posting his bishop on b7 dangers will quickly appear on the long diagonal a8-h1.

Now Black must make some consolidating moves, to counter White's pressure on the open d-file. Then he could perhaps make use of his pawn majority on the kingside. Whatever happens, his trump card will be his bishop, which will combine with his queen to set up threats on the light squares."

The intention of 18 Ra4 was to protect his first rank with Re4 and Re1 but he never completed the maneuver; 19 Re4 would have been more consistent. An example of the weakness of White's back rank would have been 23 Rxa7..Qc6! 24 Rd2..Qxg2+ 25 Rxg2..Rxd1#.

Botvinnik's play in this game reminded me a bit of Capablanca.

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