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Efim Geller vs Dragoljub Velimirovic
Capablanca Memorial 8th (1971), Havana CUB, rd 9, Mar-??
King's Indian Defense: Fianchetto. Yugoslav Variation Advance Line (E66)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Very impressive game. 12...e4 seems to be a decisive mistake (12...gxf5 would have been better) as I don't see any good possibility to run off from main line of Geller's combination. It led into a clearly better ending for white athough material was equal. Geller realized this advantage without difficulties.
May-22-03  bishop: It seems amazing that after Black's 18th move, White, a whole Rook down, should win this game. What about 19...h6?, all I can see is 20.Qxf6+ Qxf6 21.Bxf6 Kxf6 22.Re8 b6 23.Bh3 Bb7 24.Re6+ Kf7 25.Rxd6 Re8 and Black seems to be ok.
May-22-03  mdorothy: What happens after 20. Bxh6?.. Surely the rook wouldn't be moved from the square where white can immediately pin him again, for if he does, 21. Qg7+
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: If 19...h6, then 20.Bxh6! Rook cannot move for Qg7# and if 20...Qh8 (20...Qg8 21.Bg5 Rf5 22.Re7+ Kf8 23.f4 with next 24.Qe1), then after 21.Bg5 Bd7 <Rook is pinned again and other moves of Bishop aren't better - 21...Bf5 (21...Bg4 22.Re4) 22.Qc3 b6 23.Re6! Rxe6 (what else?) 24.dxe6+ Bxe6 (24...Kxe6 25.Qe3+ etc.) 25.Qf3+ Bf5 26.Qd5+ Be6 (or 26...Kg7 27.Bd2 Qg8 28.Qxa8) 27.Qxa8 etc.> 22.Re3 Re8 <22...Rf5 23.Re7+ Kg8 24.Qxh8+ Kxh8 25.Bd2 Nxc4 26.Bc3+ Kg8 27.Rxd7 looks as sufficient too.> 23.Bxf6 Qxf6 24.Rf3 Bf5 25.Qxf6+ Kxf6 26.g4 etc. the same motive would have been realized as in the game, of course, with a pawn as bonus for white. Is not it wonderful?
May-22-03  bishop: Well Honza, I guess Black's lagging behind in development and the terrible position of his Knight made this incredible combination possible. Pretty impressive since Geller had to have seen all this stuff on move 14.
Sep-10-03  Tigran Petrosian: Very interesting game.
Premium Chessgames Member
  jaime gallegos: 19. Re1 20. Re3 21. Rf3 are absolutely outstanding movements !
Oct-23-05  notsodeepthought: The sequence starting with 14 Nd:e4 is striking. Much like the above kibitzers, I can't find anything better for black (nor could Velimirovic).
Nov-11-05  aw1988: We can see a difference in class here; it's amazing Geller never became a world champion. Both Geller and Velimirovic are wonderful tacticians, they calculate all the time, but Geller combines in this game more positional understanding. He would not make a move as reckless as the Yugoslav's ...e4. It goes to show some of the greatest attackers are also the greatest strategists.
Nov-11-05  Koster: Geller seemed to be graet attacker but not such a great defender. He was always dangerous as his score against world champions demonstrates. The sacrifice could be equal parts intuition and calculation, with possibly some home analysis since Geller also played the KID.
Apr-05-06  AdrianP: <Honza> Marin analyses this game in Secrets of Attacking Chess and has some interesting analysis of 19. ...Qh8!? I'll try to post some of it at a later stage, but you might want to have a go at it yourself.

I had a look at 19. ...b5 but this just falls into White's hands - 20. Re6!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: <AdrianP> 19...Qh8!? is really quite interesting but white seems to be still up. 20.Re3 h6 (Or 20...Bg4 21.Qe1! b6 22.h3 ) 21.Bxf6 Qxf6 22.Rf3 Bf5 23.Qxf6+ Kxf6 24.g4 cannot be much different from game's course. Black's main trouble is clearly his bad Knight on a5 and so the ending should be in favour of white. On the other hand, the alternative 20.Qc3 b6 21.Re6 (Now 21.Re3 is weaker for 21...Bg4) seems to be less favourable for white as the ending after 21...Bxe6 22.Bxf6 Qxf6 23.dxe6+ Kxe6 24.Qxf6+ Kxf6 25.Bxa8 Ke5 is clearly better for black due to his active King (Kd4, a6 and b5 will follow). White can try to improve it with 24.Bd5+ Ke7 25.Qe3+ Qe5 26.Qxe5 dxe5 27.Bxa8 but it is only drawish I think.
Jul-26-07  gmgomes: This game deserves to be a game of the day:
White sacs a full rook and achieves a supeior endgame.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <Honza Cervenka: <12...e4> seems to be a decisive mistake <(<12...gxf5> would have been better)>>

Some games after <12... gxf5>:

Smejkal vs F Hoelzl, 1980

Stohl vs A Lanc, 1984

E Vladimirov vs A Kovalev, 1989

Similar games (<13... gxf5>) are:

Smejkal vs Gligoric, 1982
Wojtkiewicz vs Smejkal, 1992

Related game (far similar 14... gxf5):
Stohl vs R Irzhanov, 1994

Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn and Two: Regarding Black's 12th move, Geller stated in "The Application of Chess Theory"; <Velimirovic attempts prematurely to seize the initiative, and runs into a counter-blow. Correct, of course, was the quieter 12..gxf5.>
Nov-14-11  notyetagm: WOW!!!
Nov-14-11  notyetagm: Game Collection: GELLER'S BEST GAMES
Nov-14-11  notyetagm: Game Collection: GELLER'S BEST GAMES

WOW!!! => Geller vs Velimirovic, 1971

Volume 11 - 2nd Place - 51 pts.
from Chess Informant: 640 Best Games - Part 2 by TheAlchemist

Jul-06-15  saturn2: I dont quite get why black defended ...16: Bf6 because all in all this costs him the rook a few moves later. If black plays 16 Qc7 for instance white takes 17: Qxa1 winning all in all a bishop - or is there a mortal attack afterwards with white's Queen, bishop and knight?
Apr-09-18  Toribio3: Good delivery of rook and pawns end game techniques by Geller. You can learn a lesson from his games.
Oct-28-18  Howard: Informant 12 rated this one as the second-best game of Volume 11, but there should probably be an asterisk next to that #2 ranking.

Why ? Because the first-place game actually occurred in 1970, but it didn't make it into the Informant until Volume 11 (first half of 1971).

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