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Erich Eliskases vs Paul Keres
Buenos Aires Olympiad fin-A (1939), Buenos Aires ARG, rd 1, Sep-01
Zukertort Opening: Nimzo-Larsen Variation (A04)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Sep-04-05  paladin at large: In commenting on Keres's sometimes shaky judgment, this is the game Capablanca said Keres blew by going for a win with an unjustified king excursion in a clearly drawn ending.
Sep-04-05  jcmoral: On what move was the draw offered?
Sep-04-05  paladin at large: I am not aware that a draw was offered.
Sep-04-05  WMD: Nazi-hunting in Argentina was always a tricky business.
Jul-14-07  Karpova: <Against Eliskases, also in that tournament, Keres had to choose between accepting a draw in a perfectly balanced rook ending and trying to force matters with a peculiar king excursion. He picked the latter and lost. Why? Because in circumstances where visual foresight is not sufficient, where accurate judgment is necessary, Keres is still not fully developed.>

Jose Raul Capablanca

Aug-07-09  birthtimes: Perhaps Capablanca was referring to Keres 22nd and 23rd move...
Premium Chessgames Member
  Mateo: I am not sure Capablanca was right. Of course, 23...Kd4!? was risky but Black got a strong counterplay. It seems that Black is lost after 34...gxf5? The two connected White pawns were too strong. Maybe 34...b4 was a better attempt.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Mateo: However, Stockfish gives a winning variation for White after 34...b4. It begins this way: 35.Kh3 Rd3+ 36.Kg4 Rd4+ 37.Kg3 (threatens f7) Rd5 38.Kf4. If 38...Rd4+ 39.Ke5! Rxh4 40.f7 Rh8 41.Kf6. Beautiful!
May-02-18  DrGridlock: <Mateo> in your line, isn't 37 ... gxf5 (instead of 37 ... Rd5) completely winning for black?

Erich Eliskases - Paul Keres

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Seems like an odd blunder for Stockfish to make.

Premium Chessgames Member
  WorstPlayerEver: -30... b5 31. cxb5 c4 =

-30. Kg2 Rd6 31. Rxa7 Kd4 32. g5 Kxc4 33. f4 b5 34. f5 Rd4 = #dia1

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-31. g5 b5 32. cxb5 c4 33. Rc7 Kd3 34. Rc6 +- #dia2

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Premium Chessgames Member
  Mateo: <DrGridlock> Sorry for this mistake. The real Stockfish variation was 35.f6 (threatens f7) Rd5 36.Kh3 ! Rd3+ 37.Kg4 Rd4+ 38.Kg3 Rd5 39.Kf4. As you can see I forgot to type 35.f6. Thus, you should read 39...Rd4+ 40.Ke5! Rxh4 41.f7 Rh8 42.Kf6.
May-04-18  DrGridlock: <Mateo> corrected version with the 35 f6 line does give a better computer eval for White, but I'm not sure the line is "winning." Using computers in evaluating endgames can be tricky, because there can arise situations with a material advantage for one side (producing a large computer eval for that side) which simply cannot be converted into a win.

From this position:

Erich Eliskases - Paul Keres

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Play could proceed in this way:

Black checks White's king, which marches up to f6 to support the pawn. Black gets the h-pawn, and then places his rook on the 8th rank to prevent the f-pawn from promoting.

35 ... Rd4
36 Kh3 Rd3+
37 Kg4 Rd4+
38 Kg3 Rd5
39 Kf4 Rd4+
40 Ke5 Rxh4
41 f7 Rh8
42 Kf6

Erich Eliskases - Paul Keres

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Now black puts his rook on b8, simultaneously supporting his b-pawn, and preventing the f-pawn from advancing. Black queens the b-pawn for which black trades his rook. Black now has a rook and pawn against White's two advanced pawns.

42 ... Rb8
43 Kxg6 b3
44 Ra1 Kd3
45 Rg1 b2
46 Kf5 b1Q
47 Rxb1 Rxb1
48 g6 Rg1
49 Kf6 Kf1+
50 Ke7 Re1
51 Kf8

Erich Eliskases - Paul Keres

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Eval here still strongly favors white (over +2). Now black advances his c-pawn while White queens his g-pawn.

51 ... c4
52 g7 c3
53 g8Q c2
54 Qg6+ Kd2

Erich Eliskases - Paul Keres

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Computer evals of this position are interesting. They'll consistently give White's material advantage (queen and pawn versus rook and pawn) an edge (over +2 for white from Komodo), but there is simply no way for White to convert this to a win. Run a computer on this position, and you'll just find White's queen dancing around delivering checks. There's no way to prevent black from advancing and promoting his c-pawn, and trading his rook for White's f-pawn.

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