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Garry Kasparov vs Boris Spassky
Interpolis 5th (1981), Tilburg NED, rd 5, Oct-07
King's Indian Defense: Averbakh. Benoni Defense Advance Variation (E75)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Oct-29-05  ughaibu: 33.g4 looks like the turning point to me.
Nov-02-05  tarry knight: ughaibu: was that a left turning point or a right turning point.
Nov-02-05  ughaibu: Central.
Nov-02-05  tarry knight: In that case you have no case just because you are case is certainly central for you being a case.
Nov-02-05  ughaibu: You're getting there, a couple more weeks and your english'll be as bad as Lamonts.
Nov-09-05  TripledPawns: There has been some interesting stuff posted about Fischer recently, like his challenging Topalov, or playing Fischer Random Chess with Karpov, and even playing Garry Kasparov a match for $10 million! is the link.

Nov-09-05  who: <Everett: Karpov was the only one to challenge him in tournaments and matches alike, coming up extremely short each time.> I assume you mean just short.
Feb-19-06  MorphyMatt: A very interesting final position!
Feb-19-06  Everett: <who> Coming up "short" can be by a bunch or a little. Perhaps "just short" would be better than "extremely short" in typical situations. I wished to add a different emphasis on the hackneyed phrase, indicating an even closer competition between the two players.

Since you got the "gist," I have no qualms leaving my post as is. Poetic license, if you will.

Apr-19-06  ButIdothattoo: Well, this was certainly a time-pressure conclusion. I see no reason not to play 34 Rxe4 over 34 h4?!
Premium Chessgames Member
  pawn to QB4: Possibly the mighty Gazza didn't fancy 34...Rxd5, e.g. 35. Bxd5 Qxd5 36. f3 Qd1 + with lots of counterplay.
Jul-05-06  Confuse: its too bad age is always a factor. player a wasn't in his prime... player b was still too young... etc. it just makes me sad. ; _ ;
Aug-27-06  positionalgenius: One of Spassky's finest.Games like this are why I like him.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eggman: <<its too bad age is always a factor. player a wasn't in his prime... player b was still too young... etc. it just makes me sad.>>

Actually it's pretty amazing that players 26 years apart in age could even meet. That certainly doesn't happen in sports! All the more tragic that Fischer and Karpov (just eight years difference) never met. And now I am sad :(

Sep-23-10  Whitehat1963: Great ending!
Oct-26-11  serenpidity.ejd: Tsk!tsk!tsk! Kasparov was aggressive and therefore fell into an 'opening trap.' He underestimated Spassky. The Benoni was an opening Spassky had much familiarity with because this was the favorite of Fischer during his career and whom he challenged for the World Championship and lost. Spassky must have studied the opening very extensively. Lesson learned. Bravo! An outstanding performance by the former challenger.
Aug-07-12  sicilianhugefun: Fantastic play by Spassky! Often times Boris is on a slightly worse position within a very tensioned game, and often times when the smoke gets all cleared, it is he who emerges triumphantly.
Dec-03-12  Conrad93: Spassky was only 44 in this game. It's not that old.
Dec-03-12  Conrad93: What's really sad is that Fischer left chess just when he was becoming the greatest player in history.
Feb-13-13  JIRKA KADLEC: 47.Ra5? (47.Rb2!! Rxa7 48.Kf5 Bh6 49.d6!=)
Feb-13-13  RookFile: This game is a good one to look at whenever somebody brings up Spassky's rating in his later days. It's ridiculous to do so because the man had already been champion of the world and had nothing more to prove. Spassky for years played a lot of draws, which hurt his numerical chess rating. None of this reflected his true strength, and when he made up his mind to play, he could still knock off anybody in any given game.
Feb-13-13  DWINS: Spassky was getting totally smashed in this game, but the decisive blow would have resulted in such a sharp position that absolute accuracy in calculation would be required and Kasparov was not up to it on this day.

Garry could have played the devastating
35.d6! e3
36.f3!! Kh7

The f3-pawn cannot be taken because of mate in 7: 36...Qxf3 37.Qf7+ Kh8 38.Qxf6+ Kh7 39.Qe7+ Kh8 40.Qxd8+ Kg7 41.Qg8+ Kf6 42.Qf7+ Ke5 43.Qe6#

37.Bd3+ Kg8
38.Nc7 Bg7

Again the f3-pawn is immune from capture: 38...Qxf3 39.Qg6+ Bg7 40.Qh7+ Kf7 41.Bc4+ Bd5 42.Qf5+ Kg8 43.Bxd5+ Qxd5 44.Qxd5+ Kh7 45.d7 Bd4 46.a8=Q Rxa8 47.Nxa8 e2+ 48.Kh1 Bf6 49.Qf7+ Bg7 50.d8=Q h5 51.Qdg8+ Kh6 52.Qgxg7#

39.Qg6 Qb4 and Houdini announces a long forced mate starting with 40.Re2

If Kasparov would have made even one slip up in the above lines then it would have been him on the wrong side of a mate. Therefore it's not surprising that he opted for 35.Nc3 which, although it loses the lion share of his advantage, still leaves him with a winning position. His fatal mistake came later.

All this is terribly complicated and I'm not sure how many humans would have seen all the ramifications of 35.d6! over the board.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: The line provided by <DWINS> is counterintuitive; few players-probably only the greatest, after concrete calculation, or very weak ones-would consider the idea d6, as it opens the long diagonal which White has gone to great pains to keep obstructed.
Nov-09-15  DarthStapler: This proves that Kasparov < Spassky < Fischer


Mar-20-16  Hunter16: Man.Spassky was a scary player in his prime.He too beat Fischer many times,despite having a worse head to head record and his overall record against Kasparov is 2-2.Respect.
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