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Viktor Korchnoi vs Anatoly Karpov
"This Old Man Plays d4" (game of the day Sep-24-2010)
Karpov - Korchnoi Candidates Final (1974), Moscow URS, rd 21, Nov-11
Queen's Indian Defense: Anti-Queen's Indian System (E17)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Peligroso Patzer: <pastpawn: If I remember right, this is the game where Korchnoi had to ask the arbiter if 18. 0-0 would be legal with the king's rook under attack.>

<mcgee: Pastpawn, you are correct. Korchnoi admitted that he had never encountered this scenario in all the years he had been playing chess; presumably this legal finesse had bypassed him when he learnt the rules of chess, and as such he was unsure at the age of 43 whether castling with the rook under attack was legal. *** Korchnoi checked with arbiter O' Kelly and all was well.>

It is interesting that <Alberic O'Kelly de Galway > was the arbiter for this game. Some 40 years previously, O'Kelly lost a 13-move miniature in a game involving another situation in which there could be confusion on the part of some players with regard to the legality of castling. In the O'Kelly game from 1934, it was the b1 square that was under attack, and the decisive stoke for White was 13. 0-0-0+ (giving check and also attacking a Black Rook on b2):

Feuer vs O'Kelly, 1934

Apr-11-07  Marmot PFL: I didn't think he would even be allowed to ask the arbiter. I mean what next, should the TD show him how the horsey moves? This is GM chess, not a junior high school event.

I learned to play by age 8 or 9, but it wasn't until I read a book on chess (by I.A Horowitz) which I found in the family bookshelves that I knew about the en passant rule, Q side castling or underpromotion. The book was a game collection that didn't explain these things, but it had so many diagrams that I could figure them out from the position and the notation (which in those days was descriptive). So I am astounded that a strong GM wouldn't know a simple rule. Maybe it was just Korchnoi's way of adding insult to Karpov's injury, which I wouldn't put past him.

Apr-11-07  Marmot PFL: <LIFE Master AJ> Very nice job. Enough diagrams that I didn't need to use a board. Qd2 was probably prepared although Korchnoi finds strong moves OTB as well.

<I produced my card proving that I was a certified Club TD> Good thinking not to show them your Life Master certificate. They might take you into the backroom and break your thumbs..."We got no use for chess hustlers around here boy."

Apr-15-07  mcgee: >>9. ... Nc6?!(9. ... g6 10. Qd1 d6 11. cxd5 Na6 12. 0-0 Nd7=<<

see the earlier comments about Hartston and Keene visiting Korchnoi during the match and suggesting 9..g6 10.cxd5 followed by an all-out attack with h2-h4

Apr-15-07  mcgee: >>Very nice job. Enough diagrams that I didn't need to use a board. Qd2 was probably prepared although Korchnoi finds strong moves OTB as well.<<

'A move, the true value of which was recognised by many venerable commentators, including the former World Champpion Botvinnik, who even expressed the suggestion that I had prepared it at home. But I could not have anticipated all of Karpov's dubious moves!'

(Korchnoi on 11 Qd2)

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: I was just wondering:would it had been the job of the referee to tell a player that a certain move was illegal-or even to answer a direct query on whether a move IS illegal?

In this case,castling was legal-put the bishop at b4 or h3 instead of e5 and it would have been illegal.

Dec-18-07  Riverbeast: Maybe he asked if O-O was a legal move because he couldn't believe his eyes, he was waxing karpov so bad....

Or knowing Korchnoi, maybe he asked the question just to annoy "you didn't see O-O" ?

Dec-18-07  micartouse: <LMAJ: I have played in many bars and stuff across the country. In such environs, all the rules of chess are NOT clearly known, take a pawn "EN PASSANT," and you are liable to have your arm broken for being a cheater. (It got so bad that for many years I took toting a rulebook around in my car just for such instances.)>

This is annoying when people don't know the rule, but whenever I play around I just pretend the rule doesn't exist - I hate being accused of making up rules as I go along. Usually against such players, you can afford this kind of handicap easily though.

As for this game, I think Korchnoi knew the rule and he was messing with Karpov.

Dec-18-07  zooter: another one for the rules: I've had players say that when my pawn reaches the 8th rank, it can only be promoted to a piece based on the square (eg. a square means rook, b square means knight and so on)...

off course, i never argue as these people are too weak to beat me anyways; interestingly i wonder what happens in these rules if the e pawn gets promoted? Double king play??

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: There was another promotion nuance I heard of before:take this position

click for larger view

White to play and mate in one-

He moves the pawn to b8 and promotes to a BLACK knight.

It's of course illegal,but just something to think about.

Dec-19-07  talisman: sure would like to see these games on the WC pages 1975.better than no games.karpov's 9th move is the problem here.11th move is bad too.maybe 11.Re8 is better.
Dec-22-08  WhiteRook48: Strange that Karpov would make this kind of blunder

Dec-23-08  WhiteRook48: ...Qxg5?? is a bad novelty. How could a GM and world champion not see that an h6-queen defends a g5-bishop?
Jan-13-09  WhiteRook48: how could KARPOV blunder his queen? Or was the game blitz?
Feb-01-09  WhiteRook48: or maybe Korchnoi had a threat that forced Karpov to give up his Q
Apr-01-09  onesax: WhiteRook: supposing Karpov moved his threatened queen instead (or even played Re7), Korchnoi has 17. Bf6 with mate on g7 or h8 to follow.
Sep-24-10  Peter Nemenyi: <WhiteRook48: Strange that Karpov would make this kind of blunder>

Yes, it is; but Karpov, a very slight man physically, tended to wear down and lose his accuracy late in long, tough matches. It happened here, in his 1978 match with Korchnoi, and in his first match with Kasparov.

Sep-24-10  franksp: Slightly similar combination Timman vs Karpov Montreal 1979, which Karpov won.
Sep-24-10  morphy2010: This was a game that determined who challenged Fischer in 1975 i believe.
Sep-24-10  ughaibu: You should see a doctor, seriously.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: That can happen to anybody.
Sep-24-10  manakin: <...Qxg5?? is a bad novelty. How could a GM and world champion not see that an h6-queen defends a g5-bishop?> <WhiteRook48: Strange that Karpov would make this kind of blunder>

<Yes, it is; but Karpov, a very slight man physically, tended to wear down and lose his accuracy late in long, tough matches.>

What are you guys talking about? trading the queen for the bishop is the only way to prevent Bf6, followed by Qg7#.

Sep-24-10  manakin: Hmm. seems like black does have some other options as well, Ng4 or nf3... but neither seems much better: 16...Ng4 17.Qxg6+ Kh8 18.Qh5+ followed by 19.Qxf7+ kh8 20.Bxd8, or 16...Nf3+ 17.Bxf3 Bxf3 18.Bxd8.
Sep-24-10  manakin: And of course, on 16...Re7 comes 17.Bf6 Qf8 18.Qh8#.
Sep-24-10  sfm: 12.-,Rb8?? Oops, quite an oversight for a Karpov, but we know already that this happens to absolutely everyone. Is there anything better than
12.-,BxN 13.QxB,QxQ 14.BxQ,Kg7 ?
But white still looks a lot happier, so something must have gone wrong already.
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