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Leonid Stein vs David Bronstein
Moscow (1971), Moscow URS, rd 1, Nov-24
English Opening: Symmetrical Variation. General (A30)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-01-03  gilk: Beautiful game by Stein!
Jun-02-03  drukenknight: Actually it is more like a funny mistake created by that odd looking R move to h8.

By move 51 it looks like black will have to blockade the queening squares w/ R/K. Doesnt happen often, but it does happen. SInce whites B is the "wrong color", this may hold. instead Bronstein fools around with the R and then the R cannot get back to block. Because when he finally does move the K back to d8 he cuts off the Rook!

I think 52...Rb8

Premium Chessgames Member
  nasmichael: Equal material, different armies. This is sophisticated for my intermediate palate. I enjoyed seeing it. Thanks, OpenDefence, for recommending it to me.
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <drukenknight>
Long time no see, welcome back!

<I think 52...Rb8>
What if White then just plays to advance pawns and king, something like 52...Rb8 53. b6 Kf5 54. b7 Ke6 55. Bg2 Kd7 56. Bh3+, followed by 57. Kc6 etc.

Apr-08-07  Ulhumbrus: An attractive exchange sacrifice on Stein's part,and I may want to look at this game again.It may be that when Bronstein plays 3..Bg7 he expects Stein to play his QN to c3, instead of which Stein keeps the option of Nd2. The result is that on 6 Nxd4, in the event of 6...cxd4 White has the option of Nd2 and Nf3.
Apr-08-07  ounos: <drunkenknight>, even if B's King was magically placed at d8 in the final position, Black still can't prevent W's Bishop arrival at c8, tying down both K and R. W's King then could simply take Black's rest pawns.

Nice game. I enjoyed Black's stiff resistance in a difficult position, after the shock of 22. Nxc5.

May-09-09  nummerzwei: Today, I had an odd experience related to this game. First of all, I should mention that it was included in Dvoretsky's "School of Chess Excellence 2: Tactical Play". In the German version "Moderne Schachtaktik" (Hombrechtikon,2006) it is to be found on pages 75 to 77.

The title page of that work indicates that it was "durchgesehen von Rudolf Teschner" ("looked over by Rudolf Teschner"). Therefore, I have to assume that it was Teschner who made a comment on black's 22..dxc5 an English translation of which reads as follows:
(Editor's Note: After 22..QxNc5 23 QxNe8 Be5 white, in order to save the bishop, would be forced to play 24.QxBe5, giving up his queen for two minor pieces and two pawns.")(page 76)

As this material constellation has never been considered satisfactory, this leaves the reader with the idea that Stein's combination was refuted and that, accordingly, Dvoretsky's detailed examination of the lines after 22...dxNc5 was superfluous. Indeed, such cases have happened.

Here, however, the problem is somewhat different: The line suggested by Teschner is rubbish! After 22...QxNc5 23.QxNe8 Be5? white simply plays 24.RxBe5 and if 24...RxQe8 25.RxRe8+ Kg7 26.Be3 Qc7 27.BxRa7 QxBa7 28.RxBc8. If 24...dxRe5 25.Qxe5 black is also lost;white is threatening 26.Be3 as well as 26.Qf6 and 27.Be5.Incidentally, even I was able to find this on my own.

In fact, the whole episode is incomprehensible. Bronstein and Stein were undoubtedly two of the finest tacticians in chess history. Dvoretsky is widely considered one of the world's foremost chess analysts, writers and teachers. Keene, whose annotations on this game are mentioned by Dvoretsky, is a very strong player too.

Teschner's claim that 22..QxNc5 followed by 23..Be5 by force led to a material advantage for Black suggests that all of them had been wrong (Keene awarded 22.Nxc5 a double exclamation mark according to Dvoretsky, Dvoretsky himself implied that the position after 26...Rb7 was equal) and had missed the key line. Yet he apparently didn't bother to check his analysis (otherwise he would have realized his mistake quickly) and nobody else did either.

May-09-09  parisattack: <nummerzwei: Today, I had an odd experience related to this game. First of all, I should mention that it was included in Dvoretsky's "School of Chess Excellence 2: Tactical Play". In the German version "Moderne Schachtaktik" (Hombrechtikon,2006) it is to be found on pages 75 to 77.>

Thoughtful, instructive and interesting commentary such as this - one of the reasons I have stayed with CG despite misgivings on other fronts.

This one gets tucked between pages 120-121 in Master of Attack by Keene.


Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: 48...Ra7 or 48...Rd8 could have been more stubborn defence.

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