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Mikhail Chigorin vs David Janowski
Hastings (1895), Hastings ENG, rd 20, Aug-31
Vienna Game: Falkbeer Variation (C26)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Apr-09-15  stst: Hit the line but let the Nb1 defense escapes...
Often the difficulty (self-created) is to figure out the best(?, or the player in the defending side) defense while also the best offense for the attacking side...
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: The material is identical.

The white castle looks weak due to the pawn on a3. The slow maneuver b5-b4 is met with Nb1. This suggests the blood-thirsty 13... Bxa3:

A) 14.bxa3 Qxa3+ 15.Kg1 Nb4

A.1) 16.Nb5 Qh2+ (or 16... Ba2+ 17.Ka1 Nxc2#) 17.Kc1 Qa1# (or 17... Qxc2#).

A.2) 16.Be2 Ba2+ 17.Ka1 (17.Nxa2 Qxa2+ and mate next) 17... Bb3+ 18.Kb1 Bxc2#.

A.3) 16.Rc1 Na2 (threatens 17... Nxc3+ and mate next; the maneuver 16... Ba2+ 17.Ka1 (17.Nxa2 Qxa2#) 17... Bd5+ 18.Kb1 Rf6 19.d4 Rb6 20.Bb5 Rxb5 also wins) 17.Re1 Nxc3+ 18.Bxc3 Ba2+ 19.Ka1 Bb3+ 20.Kb1 Qa2+ 21.Kc1 Qxc2#.

B) 14.Nb1 Bxb2+ 15.Kxb2 Qa2+ 16.Kc1 (16.Kc3 Qa1#) 16... Nd4 and mate soon.

C) 14.Ne2 Bxb2+ 15.Kxb2 (15.Kb1 Qa1#) 15... Qa2+ 16.Kc3 (16.Kc1 Qa1#) 16... Qa3#.

D) 14.Bg5 Qxc3 15.bxa3 Nd4 and mate in two.

E) 14.Be1 Bb4 wins a pawn with a much better position.

Apr-09-15  gofer: <13 ... Bxa3>

The bishop is immune...

14 bxa3 Qxa3+
15 Kb1 Nb4
16 any move Ba2+
17 Nxa2 Qxa2+ (Ka1 Nxc2#)
18 Kc1 Qxc2#

But how should white refuse the bishop sacrifice?

14 Na2 Bxb2+
15 Kxb2 Qa2+
16 Kc1 Nd4 mating

So it looks like white must accept the loss of the pawn and simply give his king some luft.

14 Re1 Bb4

14 Be1 Bb4

Black is clearly better, but its hardly a slam-dunk!



<E) 14.Be1 Bb4 wins a pawn with a much better position.>


Apr-09-15  morfishine: <stst> Yes, finding the best moves for both sides using only visualization is difficult.

I had <13...Bxa3> to start, but then 14.Ne4? (threatening 15.Ng5)

14...Bxb2+ 15.Kxb2 Qa2+ 16.Kc3 Qa3#

Hey look, I'm making bad moves just like Chigorin!


Apr-09-15  lost in space: Heck, I thought it is white to move and after a long think I decided to have a look which genius move/line/idea is able to win the white position.

Now I know: none.

Apr-09-15  Ratt Boy: Or 14.♘d5, ♗xb2+ 15.♔xb2, ♕a2+ 16.♔c3 (♔c1, ♕a1#), ♕a3+ 17.♔c4, ♕b4#. (Typing from memory. I believe this is correct.)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: I got 13...Bxa3, but anticipated 14.bxa3 Qxa3+ and perpetual check. If OTB, white played 14.Nb1, I might've considered 14...Bxb2+ 15.Kxb2, and whatever it is to follow.
Apr-09-15  TheaN: Thursday 9 April 2015 <13....?>

Black has pressure on the white queenside castle, a side that's always more vulnerable to sacrifices and breakthroughs than the kingside. With four attacking pieces and only two readily available defenders, black can strike.

<13....Bxa3!> accepting leads to a long series of forced moves that allow black to at least win the piece back. Declining is not as productive.

A) <14.Nb1> seemingly defending against the threats <14....Bxb2+! 15.Kxb2 Qa2+ 16.Kc1 (Kc3 Qa1#) Nd4> wins, Δ Qc2# <17.Na3 Qxa3+ 18.Kb1 Ba2+ 19.Ka1 Nxc2#>.

B) <14.Qe3?!> one possible way to just ignore the position. <14....Bc5! 15.Qf3 Qa1+ 16.Nb1 Ba2 >.

C) <14.bxa3 Qxa3+ 15.Kb1 Nb4> Δ 16....Ba2 17.Nxa2 (Ka1 Nxc2#) Qxa2+ 18.Kc1 Qxc2# <16.Rc1> only move that defends against immediate mate on c2 <16...Ba2+ 17.Ka1 Bd5+ 18.Kb2 Rf6!> Δ Ra6. The knight's committed to a2, if <19.d4 exd4 > the white position collapses.

Apr-09-15  Lambda: 13... Bxa3 is the obvious move. On most replies, we've certainly at least won a pawn, maybe we have more, but we're certainly happy. Moving the Nc3 with a discovered attack isn't going to get any material back, we can either take the knight with our queen or play Bb4, maybe we have better, but we're certainly happy. So we only need to calculate variations for 14. bxa3.

14... Qxa3+ 15. Kb1 Nb4 and now the only defence against the mate threats around a2 and c2 is 16. Rc1. But we have 16... Na2 and there's certainly no way white's going to both avoid mate and not fall behind on material. So we have calculated enough to know the move is correct, and we can make it, and see what the white reply is.

Apr-09-15  patzer2: Here's my look at today's Thursday puzzle game with the Opening Explorer and Deep Fritz 14:

<1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nf6 3. d3 ?!>

This is seldom played as it gives up the initiative and allows Black to equalize too easily.

The most popular move here is 3. Nf3 = as in Wei Yi vs Ju Wenjun, 2015.

The second most popular choice is 3. Bc4 = as in Caruana vs Anand, 2015.

<3... d5 4. exd5> Fritz indicates this is best, but an interesting alternative is the more frequently played 4. f4 !? as in Lu Shanglei vs Ni Hua, 2012

<4... Nxd5 5. Qe2?!> Blocking the Bishop's development can't be good. Better here is 5. Bd2 = as in J Ingvason vs J Hardarson, 2012.

<5... Nc6 6. Bd2 Be7 7. O-O-O O-O 8. Qf3 Be6 9. Nge2 f5 10. Qh3 Qd6 11. Nxd5 Qxd5 12. Nc3 Qa5 13. a3?!>

This loses immediately. Putting up more resistance is 13. Kb1 Rad8 14. Qe3 Bb4 15. f4 Bxc3 16. Bxc3 Qxa2+ 17. Kc1 e4! 18. Qc5 a5 19. Qa3 Qd5 20. Be2 Nd4 21. Rhe1 c5 22. Bf1 Qc6 23. b3 b5 24. Qb2 a4 25. bxa4 bxa4 26. dxe4 fxe4 .

<13... Bxa3!!> This solves today's Thursday puzzle.

<14. Nb1> If 14. bxa3, Black mates after 14...Qxa3+ 15. Kb1 Nb4! 16. Rc1 Ba2+ 17. Ka1 Bb3+ 18. Kb1 Rf6! 19. d4 Ba2+ 20. Ka1 Bc4+ 21. Kb1 Nd3 22. cxd3 Rb6+ 23. Kc2 Qb3#.

<14... Bxb2+ 15. Kxb2 Qa2+ 16. Kc1 Nd4 0-1>

White resigns in the face of an unstoppable mate threat (e.g. 17. Qxh7+ Kxh7 18. Na3 Qxa3+ 19. Kb1 Qa2+ 20. Kc1 Qc2#).

Apr-09-15  TheaN: There are some interesting sidebranches in this puzzle: the main lines after accepting or 14.Nb1 are correct, yet there are more interesting variations if white declines.

Of course his position is bad, but even after my 14.Qe3?! Bc5?! (Bxb2+ ) 15.Qe1!? white is 'better' off than in the main lines. 14.Re1 opens up a whole new dimension to the puzzle, the center, because black is forced to block off e2 with Nd4, or abuse e2 by forcing the king there and play Nd4+ with f4+.

In terms of solving, I'd say at least the 16.Rc1! defense and 14.Nb1 are mandatory: if one fails to spot the Rf6 lift or the double sacrifice on b2 respectively, white is still worse but not immediately lost.

Apr-09-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: Black's position is a model of good development, with space advantage and fluid central control. White has lost time in the opening - the d3 pawn hampers mobility and the undeveloped bishop is unable to defend the castled position. initially I thought that black might be able to trap the white queen, but why bother - the queen is offside anyway. Instead, black can go after the king with

13... Bxa3! and now

A) 14.bxa3 Qxa3+ 15.Kb1 Nb4 16.Rc1 (otherwise 16... Ba2+ 17.Ka1 Bg3+ 18.Kg1 Bf2#) Ba2+ 17.Ka1 (Nxa2 Qxa2#) Bd5+ 18.Kb1 Rf6 19.e4 Rb6 and the threat of Nd3+ is unstoppable.

B) 14.Nd5 Qxd5 15.bxa3 Qa2 winning a 2nd pawn with ongoing attack.

C) 14.Ne4! Bb4 15.Bxb4 Qxb4 (Nxb4? 16.Ng5) 16.Ng5 Qf4+ 17.Qe3 Qxe3+ 18.fxe3 Bd7 and black is a pawn up with a better position. There must be better, but I don't see it right now.

Time for review ...

Apr-09-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: Now I see the easy win after 14.Ne4? 14... Bxb2+ forces mate. Better luck tomorrow...
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <patzer2>

<<3... d5 4. exd5> Fritz indicates this is best, but an interesting alternative is the more frequently played 4. f4 !? as in Lu Shanglei vs Ni Hua, 2012>

Steinitz played this line repeatedly at London 1899, with disastrous results. (Well, it did get Lasker a brilliancy prize.)

Steinitz vs Lasker, 1899

Steinitz vs Pillsbury, 1899

Steinitz vs J Mason, 1899

Apr-09-15  dfcx: 13...Bxa3 and white can't take the bishop.
14.bxa3? Qxa3+ 15.Kb1 Nb5 16.Rc1 (forced) Ba2+ 17.Ka1 Bc4+ 18.Kb1 Rf6 and white will be mated in a few moves.

white is down a pawn with weakened defense after losing the pawn, without any good moves.

Apr-09-15  TheTamale: White's opening play is horrendous.
Apr-09-15  Castleinthesky: I was looking at a queen or bishop sacrifice but missed Qa5 to set up the bishop, nice puzzle.
Apr-09-15  Chess Dad: I didn't see the end from the beginning, but I saw enough to see that 13... Bxa3 was a good move.

I expected 14. bxa3 in response.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: The bishop gobbles up the defensive pawns and leaves the king open for a mate threat.
Apr-09-15  M.Hassan: "Medium"
Black to play 13...? and sides are equal.

<if 14.Nb1 Bxb2+ 15.Kxb2 Qa2+ 16.Kc1 Nd4 and mate next move>

A check on b4 can mate Black and that can be achieved by a Rook lift from d8 to d4 and then b4:

16.Re1 Rd4
Black does not want to capture the Rook. If 17...fxe4 18.Qxe3+ Kh8 19.Qb3 and by Black Queen reaching to help her King, White's attack will go to history.

18.Rxd4 Ba2+
19.Nxa2 Qxa2+
20.Kc1 Qxc2#

I worked hard to make the attack work without Rook lift but it does not work:

If 15.........Nd5 (instead of 15...Rd8
16.Rc1 Ba2+
17.Ka1 Bf7+ disc.+
18.Kb1 Na2
19.Nb5 Qa4
20.d4 providing way for Queen to reach the battleground and Black can no longer mate but can weaken White
21.Qa3 Qxa3
22.Nxa3 Na2

Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Match e6 or donkey up a3 ride desserts land.

Erm at ave head as boot ie padre e6 good plus forsooth can win two pawns namely have sake at a3 and i b2 anvil ide lay vest down spark e6 up ride at lion am a3 it was I don't know how light can hold as king's at back flap engage spark b1 onus have invert able flurry it boot camp again as a3 hide rig us hair sniff at girder old i a5 to backs up again have stipulate at hire hiatus ah i change over hog effect enough eg hope ever gosh ebbs a5 ogle among head constant pressure on lights defence aint though at cake walk cave cover move off order e6 few at have spark an flurry it uffer tile grave under v is have fluff e6 an a3 first old catch am leaf off book lyre a5 rap sap lap flip am script baps inter.

Glide at bag sag peg be aged it honour ave hope give get bet eat ate above your gallery peanuts for MC at chip an mind jangle old lion as have glib an spar etc thy roi dip envision as land forseeable etc at thyne e6 if ive this rig aha she cried e6 manage king's a pave fold brevity ramble give spark kind wind jowls jive over kind dink dink gazelle like sprung from afar rides and slides tack watch aloof e6 jig as match on have rig lips an glesson learnt weave spark up vet ash am cigar proof e6 street car agog slave move go ok bush.

Whacker mitigate ala show ive toboat mind jangle over ie a3 herds have for kick off i ebber am cad flight an dig i delve free deems at flurry it nip around ive bottle too et tu brute am mecurial bind as hive spark flurry it bottom's up erm again cutoff point i do often eg liege nt gotcha.

Apr-09-15  scormus: does it "count" if you get the main continuation, 14 bxa3 etc but do not consider 14 Nb1? IMO opinion a dreadful move.

My engine looked at no fewer than 8 different W replies in the first minute of calculating, none of them the move played (which it gave leading to # in 7).

Apr-09-15  Chess Dad: Does it "count?"

Nobody's keeping score, so that's an individual decision.

I'm a major patzer. I'm happy if I can see the next move and then reply as I see each opposing move and get to the right finish. So I counted today as a win, even with 14. Nb1.

But to each his own...

Oct-26-16  clbaltha: Im a Chigorin's fan. I had the privilege to see some amazing games of his, including Hastings'95. I can't believe that so fantastic player, almost a world champion, could be so pathetic, sometimes. See Pollock 0 x Chigorin 1, same tournament , and you'll understand what I'm wanting to say. The very only explanation of this: He must be much drunk, that day. What a pity, because if he had won this game against Janowski, he had been this tournament winner, crowning such so huge true talent.
Oct-28-20  MordimerChess: Not sure what just happened here... was he drunk? Celebrated too early? No idea...

But seems like Chigorin didn't know what Janowski is able to do. It was probably their first game and in the next couple of years, Mikhail lost 15 games to Dawid and won only 5...

My video analysis:


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