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Ljubomir Ljubojevic vs Eugenio Torre
Manila (1975), Manila PHI, rd 9, Oct-??
Pirc Defense: Austrian Attack. Dragon Formation (B09)  ·  1-0



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Given 6 times; par: 79 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Dec-12-08  njchess: I remembered this game from my endgame studies, so I knew the answer already. Great technique by Ljubojevic. Tough loss for Torre.
Dec-12-08  DarthStapler: I got the first move
Premium Chessgames Member
  triangulation: I concentrated of Kf4 as d7+ works out to be a draw according to my calculations

So, 56 Kf4 Re1 (....Rh5, 57 d7+ Kd8 58 Be6 ) 57 d7+ Kd8 58 Rxh7 (preventing Rf1 +) Re7 59 Rh8+ Kxd7 60 Rxb8 Kc6 and white should win.

Time to check

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: The skewer trick after 56.Kf4 Re1 57.d7+ Kd8 58.Rf8+ Kxd7 59.Rxb8
Dec-12-08  patzer2: <zooter: <patzer2:> so, 56.d7+ Kd8 57.Kf4 is second best move?> Well, I suppose that's one way to put it. By itself, 56. d7+?! is a second best but inferior move that risks throwing away the win and giving Black a draw. After 56. d7+?! Kd8, the reply 57. Kf4! is the best move under the circumstances to salvage a White advantage in a position that is then very difficult to win.

P.S. "Second best" isn't always bad (especially in reference to chess moves), but I thought I'd share a few quotes anyway:

Dale Earnhardt -- "Second place is just the first loser."

Vince Lombardi -- "There is no room for second place. There is only one place in my game and that is first place."

Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: Friday (Difficult):

Ljubojevic vs E Torre, 1975 (56.?)

White to play and win.

Material: B for R. The Black Ke8 has 1 legal move. The White Rf7 controls the 7-th rank, squeezing the Black Ke8. The White Pd6 is a candidate for queening. It controls the light squares complementary to Bb3, creating some possibilities for back-rank mates. The White Kg3 requires activation.

Candidates (56.): d7+, Kf4

The following variation does not quite work:

56.d7+ Kd8 57.Rf8+ Kxd7 58.Rxb8 Re3+ forking Bb3 and Kg3

The variation suggests that White should remove his Kg3 from the 3-rd rank to avoid …Re3+. Immediate interpolation of the threat 56.Kf4 is most forcing:

56.Kf4 (threatening 57.Kxe5)

<[Aware that without Ph3, the R+B vs. R endgame is a draw, I focused on the following variation]>

(1) 56…Rh4 57.Kg4 Rh6 58.d7+ Kd8

59.Rf8+ Kxd7 [Kc7 60.Rxb8 Kxb8 61.d8=Q+] 60.Rxb8

White now captures Ph7, advances Ph3, and forces the Black R to sacrifice itself to prevent h8=Q.

If White uncritically uses the idea in Variation (1) after 56…Rc5, however, Black has a trap:

(2) 56…Rc5 57.d7+ Kd8 59.Rf8+ Kxd7 60.Rxb8 Rc3!

< <JG27Pyth> wrote: I think my variation is every bit as good as the text... >

Sorry, <JG27Pyth>, White cannot hold both the Bb3 and Ph3, so Black draws. I would have fallen for the trap, too.

Dec-12-08  patzer2: <RandomVisitor> After 34...Nxe5! 36. dxe5 Rxd1+ 37. Be3, how does Black secure a decisive advantage? From a practical perspective, Rybka's -2.08 assessment looks a bit too optimistic.
Dec-12-08  JG27Pyth: Really liked your analysis today zooter -- one thing to add:

[after 56.Kf4 Rc5]
<The win is problematic for White after the premature 57. d7+ Kd8 58. Rf8+ Kxd7 59. Rxb8 Rc3 60. Bd1 Kc7 61. Rxb5 Rxh3 62. Bg4 Rc3 63. Rh5 >

There are pitfalls for Black if he's inaccurate, but the tablebases give the position from 63.Rh5 in that line as drawn.

Dec-12-08  Patriot: The immediate 56.d7+ Kd8 57.Rf8+ Kxd7 58.Rxb8 Re3+ 59.Kg4 Rxb3 does not work. That's when I noticed 56.Kf4. This is essentially a double-attack, threatening the rook on e5 and also threatening a combination starting with d7+ winning the rook on b8 or promoting the pawn.

I stopped there thinking "this must be the best move" because the rook is forced to move to c5, h5, e1, or e2 and the combination starting with d7+ is unstoppable. Hopefully after 56...Rc5 I would've found 57.Be6 but I'm not so sure. I could've easily fallen into the draw and played 57.d7+.

Dec-12-08  Antonius Blok: Ok: 56.Kf4 to avoid Re3+ but after 56... RC5 can't we play directly :

57.d7+ Kd8 58.Rf8+ Kc7 59.Rxb8 ?

It's a zugzwang!

Dec-12-08  patzer2: <JG27Pyth> Thanks for the table base analysis of 57. d7+ Kd8 58. Rf8+ Kxd7 59. Rxb8 Rc3 60. Bd1 Kc7 61. Rxb5 Rxh3 62. Bg4 Rc3 63. Rh5 indicating that it is a table base draw.

So, it appears 57. d7+? may indeed be a weak move that throws away the win.

Dec-12-08  Bobsterman3000: Maybe black would be better off declining the exchange and keeping his ds bishop...

Dec-12-08  Woody Wood Pusher: Missed Rc3! Nice defense.
Dec-12-08  patzer2: Oops! Need to make a correction. <RandomVisitor> After <34...Nxe5! 36. dxe5 Rxd1+ Rc8> 37. Be3, how does Black secure a decisive advantage? From a practical perspective, Rybka's -2.08 assessment looks a bit too optimistic.
Dec-12-08  JG27Pyth: @<Patzer2> sorry Patzer, I gave zooter credit for your analysis, I meant to say I liked your analysis (not that I didn't like yours too, zooter ;)

Yeah, if we credit the GMs with playing tablebase accuracy the premature d7 does indeed throw the win away! The follow up question here is, how difficult is the technique for holding R + B vs R to a draw? I know that Q vs. R is a theoretical win for the Q, but it's a pretty tricky technique for the Q to win if the guy with the rook knows what he's doing. So, is R + B vs R an easy draw?

I'm realizing there's a bunch of fundamental endgame knowledge I'm deficient in (*and I was so proud of myself for learning how to mate with N+B, too)

... what's the theory on N + R vs R. I imagine there's quite a bit to know about all the different unbalanced endgames... time for a crash course in the Chessgames endgame explorer.

@JohnLSpouge< <JG27Pyth> wrote: I think my variation is every bit as good as the text... >

<Sorry, <JG27Pyth>, White cannot hold both the Bb3 and Ph3, so Black draws. I would have fallen for the trap, too.>

Yes indeed, the sad reality of this has sunk in. I knew it was all too easy for Friday... but I never learn and quite reliably I just get all excited that I've found something the GMs missed. Only to be disappointed, yet again... LOL.

Dec-12-08  YouRang: I actually got this, pretty much.

Of course the move that first leaps into view is 56.d7+. It's check, it's forcing, it's dangerous, what more could you want?

We then have 56...Kd8 (forced) 57.Rf8+ Kxd7 58.Rxb8 and we win a rook. Too simple for a Friday, though. Looking around for black's reply, I noticed the fairly obvious: ...Re3+ forking K+B and it looks like a draw.

What we need then -- before we play d7+ -- is a move that evades that rook fork, and yet doesn't give black time to defend against the d7+ threat. One doesn't have to look hard to find 56.Kf4!, which does exactly that. With one move, we move the king off the bishop's rank and attack a rook -- how resourceful!

Unfortunately for black, he has no place to move his rook where it helps him against the d7+ threat. He can't defend his b8 rook since that Pb5 is in the way, nor can he attack the d-pawn since the bishop hits d5.

What I failed to notice until afterwards is that black can try 56...Rh5!?, which disrupts the 57.d7+ plan a bit.

For example: 57.d7+ Kd8 58.Rf8+? Kxd7 59.Rxb8 Rxa3!, and with no pawns, the white K+R+B cannot force a win against black's K+R+2P. White would need to play 58.Kg4! -- a move that is very similar to 56.Kf4, in that in one move, we remove one threat (...Rxh3) while creating a counter-threat (Kxh5).

Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: Hi, <JG27Pyth>. The Cochrane Defense ( achieves the draw in R+B vs. R.

As a mnemonic aid (to other Trekkies), the Cochrane Defense might be an early precursor of the Cochrane Deceleration Maneuever (

Dec-12-08  Dark Nero: Why not 56. d7+ Kd8 57. Rf8+ ?
If 57... Rxf7 then black loses a rook and if 57... Kc7 then 58. Rxb8 Kxb8 59. d8=Q+
Dec-12-08  ontocaustic: because 57...Kxd7 then after Rxb8 Re3+ and it's a draw
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: Everytime I see the same Torre, I think of the famous "Windmill" game, where the rook sweeps up every piece on the seventh rank.
Dec-12-08  zanshin: <HeMateMe> You mean this game?

Carlos Torre vs Lasker, 1925

Yes, nice game, different Torre ;-)

Dec-12-08  zb2cr: Hi <patzer2>,

One more quote for you:

"There are no ribbons awarded for second place in combat. The <expletive> who comes in second is buried." -- Gen. George S. Patton

Dec-12-08  TheBish: I didn't find this too hard (assuming my answer is right). I have 56. Kf4! (not 56. d7+ Kd8 57. Rf8+ Kxd7 58. Rxb8 Re3+ 59. Kg4 Rxb3, drawing) Rh5 57. Kg4! (again, 57. d7+ Kd8 58. Rf8+ Kxd7 59. Rxb8 Rxh3 draws) Rc5 (or other rook move) 58. d7+ Kd8 59. Rf8+ Kxd7 60. Rxb8 and wins, since White's h-pawn now wins in the end.
Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: "Ljubojevic seems to declare that the pieces simply are not worth what we are taught they are."

- GM Jonathan Tisdall (referring to this game from his book Improve Your Chess Now)

Jun-18-18  Omnipotent00001: 63. Kg5 is mate in 25.
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