DrGridlock: Bronstein comments on this game twice, in “200 Open Games” (in 1973) and in “The Sorcerer’s Apprenticer” (in 1995). His comments indicate that his views on this game progressed, and also give us an interesting insight into Bronstein’s approach to chess.
In 1973, Bronstein entitles his comments “The Art of Improvisation” and writes,
People come to the sanctuary of Chess Art with a sole aim: to delight in the beauty of combination. … In order, however, to create an individual combination, one has to work extrememly hard and it is essential to study the work of one’s colleagues and masterpieces of players of years gone by. … Once I was lucky; I created my own pearl, and now I want to boast about it to you. … From the educational point of view moves 29-40 can be divided into three independent parts
The Trap (moves 29 to 34)
The combination (moves 35 and 36)
The forced continuation (moves 36 to 42 (forced mate had the game continued).
By 1995, Bronstein’s views on this game seem to have changed. He writes,
“What is a combination in the game of chess? There are many opinions and nobody has a uniform answer. Sometimes I think that a combination consists of a – not too long – series of moves with material sacrifices which contain a high element of risk.”
Contrast this with Botvinnik’s definition of a combination (from “100 Selected Games” in 1951):
“Then what is a combination? A combination is a forced variation with a sacrifice.”
Botvinnik had extended Romanovsky’s earlier definition of a combination:
“A combination is a variation in the course of which both sides make forced moves and which ends with an objective advantage for the active side,”
To include the inclusion of a “sacrifice.”
Bronstein extendes Botvinnik’s definition to include “a high element of risk.”
Bronstein elaborates on his extension,
“But if there is a risk why is such a string of moves considered to be forced? Because it only “appears” to be forced, but in reality a combination contains many possibilities which are almost impossible to see while playing a tense game and which are, during subsequent analysis in a more relaxed atmosphere, still difficult to find.”
Bronstein elaborates on how this applies to this game,
“We should be modest and not, as some super computers of super humans, think that we are able to see everything. When I played 30 Rc1 I expected to win with a brilliant combination: 30 … Ne4, 31 Rdc2 Rxd4, 32 Rc7 Qd5, etc. However, while Gligoric was thinking, I suddenly realised my mistake. After 32 … Nc5, 33 Qxd4 Qxc7 34 b4 Nb3 35 axb3 Qxc1+, 36 Bxc1 Re1#, using the boomerang the brilliant combination comes from the black side. That is why I played 31 h3 to make a shelter for my King on h2 and proposed a draw. But Gligoric also did not see everything!”
Between 1973 and 1995, Bronstein seemed to realize that “the trap” need not ensare his opponent.