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Anatoly Karpov vs Boris Spassky
Karpov - Spassky Candidates Semifinal (1974), Leningrad URS, rd 3, Apr-17
King's Indian Defense: Orthodox Variation. General (E91)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Sastre: <55...Nf6 56.d7 Bxa5 57.Re8 Nxd7 58.Re4+ Kxf5 59.Re7+ Kf4 60.Rxd7 b6 61.Ra7> wins.
Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: if 55...Nf6 even 56 d7 wins, but Karpov probably would play the more accurate 56 Re6 first, tying up Black completely.

There is no preventing d7 and Re8, as White has Re4+ if the knight moves, picking up a piece with discovery next move.

Nov-29-10  BarcelonaFirenze: Spassky said that, in his opinion, Fischer would have beaten Karpov had he played in 1975...
Jan-04-11  M.D. Wilson: Spassky also said that Karpov would have won the rematch in 1978.
Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: If one is interested in opinions,
lets see what Botvinnik said about the Larsen match:

"It is hard to say how their match will end, but it is clear that such an easy victory as in Vancouver (against Taimanov) will not be given to Fischer. I think Larsen has unpleasant surprises in store for him, all the more since having dealt with Taimanov thus (a 6-0 victory), Fischer will want to do just the same to Larsen and this is impossible." -- Mikhail Botvinnik

Funny thing, I bet Botvinnik thought
he had a "winning" prediction, after
all it had never been done before.
(well, except for Fischer in the previous match)

Ahhhh opinons, 100% accurate.
(I wonder how many predicted Fischer would go 6-0, 6-0? (heh, heh) My guess would be none.

Amazing how many unplayed games Fischer has lost.

Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: Perhaps a little jealousy on the part of Botvinnik?
Jan-21-11  M.D. Wilson: No one gave Alekhine a chance in 1927 either, and look what happened there.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: I'm sure Alekhine-Euwe World Championship Match (1935) also made the chessbookies go wild.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Everett: <tamar: Karpov turned into a large spider in these type positions, laying elaborate traps.>

Nicely said. I like it.

Another indication of Karpov's style was shown with his 30.Bxg5. Even if the piece sac was unsound, Karpov feels his position is strong enough to deal with the pseudo-active N on d4.

That is what made Karpov so great. He offered his opponents only semblances of activity and the initiative.

Premium Chessgames Member
  harrylime: Karpov had his limitations.Kasparov exploited these but so would've Fischer..
Premium Chessgames Member
  harrylime: And for the 1000th time, the Spassky Karpov played in the 70's was NOT the same 60's model.
Mar-03-15  falso contacto: then I started playing 1.d4.
Mar-03-15  offramp: <Sneaky: I'm sure Alekhine-Euwe World Championship Match (1935) also made the chessbookies go wild.>

In 1935 in England the bookmakers spoke about little else.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Everett: <Aug-22-12 harrylime: And for the 1000th time, the Spassky Karpov played in the 70's was NOT the same 60's model.>

That's right, both Fischer and Karpov did not play the 64-69 Spassky. Keres, Geller, Tal, Korchnoi and Larsen did, and each were beaten. Most of Spassky's match victories weren't even close, '68 in particular.

Apr-09-16  ewan14: Boris Spassky's best years were 1961 ( 2nd 1961 ussr champiobship ) to 1969

He had to qualify for the 1963 championship
and then after it win the ridiculous tournament of

Apr-09-16  Howard: It was seven players, not six (don't know why it was an odd number, though).

Spassky finished clear first with a +2 score, despite the fact that he started out with -2 after four rounds!

Apr-09-16  Atking: 25...f6 Black should hold this position
Premium Chessgames Member
  Everett: <ewan> Spassky didn't need to win it, just top 3. USSR Zonal (1964) But yes, it was a ridiculous field, almost as tough as the US championship, haha.
Apr-10-16  Howard: True---the top three players advanced, so taking first place wasn't really essential...

...but you gotta hand it to Spassky! He could have hardly gotten off to a worse start in the first four rounds, but he nevertheless finished clear first.

Normally though, a final score of +2 would not have sufficed for clear first in a 12-game event, but that was the case here.

Apr-10-16  ewan14: Kholmov was robbed of his rightful interzonal place because of Smyslov

per Korchnoi

Premium Chessgames Member
  Everett: <...but you gotta hand it to Spassky! He could have hardly gotten off to a worse start in the first four rounds, but he nevertheless finished clear first.>

No, clear first did not matter to the others who made <top 3>. So I don't <hand it to Spassky>. It didn't matter.

Apr-27-16  Howard: Maybe first place in that event didn't count much more than third....but I still say Spassky deserved tremendous credit for making such a tremendous comeback.

I will concede one point though....Spassky's final score of 7/12 would normally have not been good enough for clear first. But this exceptionally strong event was one where no one was really able to rack up a substantial plus-score, but Spassky's point-total just happened to be better than everyone else's, so he somewhat "accidentally" ended up in clear first.

Sep-20-17  edubueno: Esta partida de BS es menos entendible que la nĂºmero 2.
Premium Chessgames Member
  gezafan: So what is black's compensation after 30.exf5? When black plays an eventual ...e4 Ra3 seems to guard against all threats. Ra3 protects the knight and removes the rook from the a1 h8 diagonal.

Was Spassky just trying to mix it up?

Oct-22-20  lentil: Amusing final position. B has no defense against 56 Re4+ Kxf5 then a discovered check to win either the N or B.
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