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Anatoly Karpov vs Lev Polugaevsky
Karpov - Polugaevsky Candidates Quarterfinal (1974), Moscow URS, rd 6, Jan-30
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf. Opocensky Variation Modern Line (B92)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 1 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Mar-02-04  Lawrence: Polu took more than an hour to decide whether or not to take the pawn, 17...Qxc2. Finally took it. Karpov says that he (K.) should have played 21.Rfe1 not 21.Rbe1 and Junior 8 agrees. J8 says that K. should have played 25.Qh5 and K. agrees. They both (and Furman) suggest that 27.Rxf6 would have been stronger than 27.Bf4 and everybody agrees.
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: And I agree with what you said.
Feb-02-05  Hesam7: I think it is a very beautiful game and I hope everyone agrees :)
Feb-03-05  euripides: Even if not the best option, Karpov's rearrangement of his queen and bishop makes a good impression. He reaches a very harmonious position, even if he misses a few wins along the way.
Feb-03-05  Everett: Lawrence, interesting comments. Without any computer help, Karpov sees all the best lines soon after the game is played. Though the game may not be played in the most efficient manner, this still speaks to how strong of a player Karpov is, at this time and later in his career.
Aug-03-05  RookFile: The difference between Polugaevsky taking an hour to play 17... Qxc2 and Fischer is, Fischer would have
had 17.... Qxc2 analyzed in this line
before the game was even played.
Aug-03-05  paul dorion: <rookfile> Yeah , Saint-Bobby would have known the line down to the 237th move!
Aug-03-05  RookFile: No, but he would have known what to
do on the 17th. His opening preparation was so famous that when he won his famous game against Robert
Byrne, he was forced to explain after the game that he didn't have this particular opening worked out to the end of the game:

R Byrne vs Fischer, 1963

Aug-03-05  euripides: ... which explains why Fischer did so well in the opening of the Sicilian when hit by Spassky's preparation in the 4th and 11th games of their match.
Aug-03-05  RookFile: Well, the 4th game is a very good game, Bobby plays right into Spassky's preparation, deliberately, and Timman was very impressed with Bobby's defense in a tough situation.

The 11th game, of course, was the poisoned pawn game, where Spassky was trying a line that hadn't really been played up to that point. Give Spassky full credit for his win.

Oh, but you forgot the 7th game. I wonder why that is? Maybe because Fischer had Spassky fighting for his life right out of the Najdorf Sicilian?

Oh, oops, you forgot the 15th game, another Najdorf Sicilian, where Bobby had a winning position and Boris just held on to draw?

Thanks for the objective analysis!

Aug-03-05  paul dorion: Where was the novelty in this game?
Aug-03-05  RookFile: And oh yes, in both games, Boris was trying a new approach, yet found Bobby making moves faster than he was.

I wonder why that was?

Aug-03-05  euripides: <rook>

The point I was making was about Fischer's preparation, not his over-the-board skill. He was in difficulties from the opening in three of those four games. Spassky had much the better of the opening in the 15th and should probably have won.

Aug-03-05  RookFile: Well, your comments don't really jibe with what an expert like Gligorich wrote in his book on the match:

17.... Nd7! "Fischer knows many positions, but this one especially well. Black protects the squares on the queenside and threatens 18... Nc5"

18....Kb8! "Both players are far sighted...."

21.... Bf6 "A strange position has arisen. Black has placed his minor pieces on the ideal squares for the Najdorf variation, but at the same time, he is a pawn down. Is he lost or has he even chances. It is hard to guess, even for an expert."

Apparently, if Spassky had a chance,
it was with something other than 23. e5 in that game, maybe 23. Rc1 is better. From this point on, Fischer
had a clear superiority.

Aug-03-05  euripides: See Spassky vs Fischer, 1972 .
Aug-04-05  RookFile: <paul dorion> the novelty in this game was 14. a5, instead of 14. Nd4 as Karpov played in the previous
game with Polugaevsky. ( A game which
Karpov made several errors, and Polugaevsky by all rights should have won. )

After 14. a5, Polugaevsky immediately
made an error, 14.... Nfd7, ceding the d5 square to Karpov's knight. In the next game of this match, Polugaevsky played the better 14... Rfe8, but missed an equalizing exchange sac, and Karpov ground him down.

Aug-04-05  sitzkrieg: I have to agree with rookfile. Its clear why euripides was incomplete in his posts.
Aug-04-05  euripides: <sitkrieg> I continued my comments on the link provided in my last post. Don't make that kind of insinuation without checking.
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <Well, the 4th game is a very good game, Bobby plays right into Spassky's preparation, deliberately, and Timman was very impressed with Bobby's defense in a tough situation.>

Since Fischer had white, and got into an inferior position in which he, per Timman, had to mount an impressive defense in a tough situation, presumably his opening preparation had holes. He did not repeat the line.

Games 7 and 11 were both poisoned pawn Sicilians. In the first Fischer refuted an unsound attack (don't know if he had it all prepared beforehand) and should have won, but played the rest of the game rather weakly and drew. Game 11 has been discussed. No one will praise Fischer's preparation there.

Game 15 -- Fischer played ...Be7 because he didn't want to repeat the PP variation, and then sacrificed a pawn for nebulous compensation. I really doubt the sacrifice was part of his preparation. Especially with Black, Fischer preferred to grab pawns, not give them. I think it was a good over the board reaction to strong opening play by Spassky. I don't understand what the quote from Gligoric is supposed to prove <Black has placed his minor pieces on the ideal squares for the Najdorf variation, but at the same time, he is a pawn down. Is he lost or has he even chances. It is hard to guess, even for an expert.> At best, Gligoric says, Fischer has compensation for the pawn; at worst he is lost.

<Fischer knows many positions, but this one especially well.> Gilgoric is not suggesting that Fischer knows this exact position (which had never occurred before); he is pointing out that Fischer is particularly at home in typical Sicilian Najdorf positions like this one.

Look, Fischer's opening preparation was generally excellent. No one would ever deny that. He also made some smart strategic choices in the Spassky match, avoiding the King's Indian and the Grunfeld and playing the Queen's Gambit. But he wasn't Superman, and it's silly to be sure he would have analyzed 17...Qxc2 in the Karpov-Polugaevsky line before the game even started. Polugaevsky, by the way, was legendary for his thorough opening preparation.

Question -- what is Bobby doing on this thread anyway?

Aug-04-05  RookFile: Well, I don't agree with you, keypusher, but you did make a good post. I suggest that if you want answers to this stuff, let's do it in the Spassky vs. Fischer games themselves.
Aug-06-05  sitzkrieg: @ Euripides/ I read it but the fact remains that u were intentionally incomplete in ur post at this page..
Aug-06-05  euripides: <sitz> I simply continued the discussion on the appropriate page.
Aug-06-05  sitzkrieg: Yup and werent complete in ur post at first. When u want to prove a point it is strange to with hold information in ur argumentation..
Aug-06-05  euripides: <sitz> I'm not responding further to this silly attack. Readers who want to know what I think about the 15th Spassky-Fischer game are referred to the game page.
Aug-06-05  sitzkrieg: U were not responding for i never asked u anything i just noted some facts and gave my opinion on them. If u call that an attack i laugh..
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