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Garry Kasparov vs Mephisto (Computer)
Blindfold simul, 10b (1985) (blindfold), Hamburg FRG, Jun-07
Spanish Game: Closed Variations. Chigorin Defense (C97)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Dec-15-16  SufferingBruin: It's crash the rook into the defense week here at CG.

Rxg7 starts the ball rolling.

Dec-15-16  jrredfield: Since it was a Mephisto computer chess product, I figure that the programmer was Richard Lang, a very brilliant chess programmer in the 1980's. The hardware in those days just was too slow to compete with the top human players. But Lang's programs won quite a few computer chess tournaments. Kasparov eventually became a supporter of computer chess.
Dec-15-16  agb2002: White has a bishop and a pawn for two knights.

Black threatens N(Q)xd5.

The first idea that comes to mind is 30.Rxg7+:

A) 30... Kxg7 31.Bh6+ Kh8 (31... Kg8 32.Qg5+ Kh8 3.Qg7#) 32.Bg7+

A.1) 32... Kxg7 33.Qg5+ (33.Rg1+ Ng4 34.Rxg4+ Bg5 35.Qxg5+ Rg7 and Black seems to hold and is a rook up)

A.1.a) 33... Kf8 34.Qh6+ Kg8 (34... Ke8 35.Bg6+ Kd8 36.Qh8+ and mate in two) 35.Rg1+ Ng4 36.Qh7+ Kf8 37.Qf7(h8#).

a.1.b) 33... Kh8 34.Qh6+ Kg8 (34... Nh7 35.Qxh7#) 35.Rg1+ as above.

A.2) 32... Kg8 33.Qh6 and mate next.

B) 30... Kf8 31.Bh6

B.1) 31... Ke8 32.Qg5

B.1.a) 32... Nh7(xd5) 33.Rxe7+ Kd8 (33... Rxe7 34.Qg8+ Nf8 35.Qxf8#) 34.Rd7+ Ke8 35.Bg6# or Qe7#.

B.1.b) 32... Qxd5 33.Rg8+ Nxg8 (33... Bf8 34.Rxf8+ Ke7 35.Qxf6#) 34.Qxg8+ Bf8 35.Qxf8#.

B.1.c) 32... Kd8 33.Rg8+ Ne8 (else mate in two) 34.Rxe8+ Kxe8 35.Qg8+ Bf8 36.Qxf8#.

B.1.d) 32... Bf8 33.Bg6+ wins.

B.2) 31... Ng8 32.Rg4+ Nxh6 (32... Ke8 33.Rxg8+ Bf8 34.Rxf8+ Ke7 35.Qg5#) 33.Qxh6+ Ke8 34.Rg8+ Bf8 35.Qxf8#.

B.3) 31... Bd8 32.Rxc7+ wins.

B.4) 31... Ne8 32.Rf7+ Kg8 33.Rg1+ and mate soon.

C) 30... Kh8 31.Rhg1

C.1) 31... Bf8 32.R7g6

C.1.a) 32... Qxd5 33.Qxd5 Nxd5 34.Rg8#.

C.1.b) 32... Rf7 33.exf7 Qxf7 34.Bh6 + - [R+B+P vs 2N].

C.2) 31... Rg8 32.Bh6

C.2.a) 32... Rxg7 33.Bxg7+ Kg8 34.Bxf6+ wins.

C.2.b) 32... Bf8 33.Rxg8+ Nxg8 34.Bxf8 wins.

Dec-15-16  gofer: I made a hash of this... ...I got the first three moves...

<30 Rxg7+ Kxg7 31 Bh6+ Kh8 32 Bg7+! Kxg7>

click for larger view

But then I missed the beautiful finish by the queen and LSB, instead I moved the rook into the action... ...which wins but much much slower...!!!

<33 Rg1+ ...>

Have a go yourself. The only problem being that <Crafty> doesn't accept the rook sacrifice, so you have to think on move two...

Dec-15-16  mel gibson: That was easy - should have been a Monday puzzle.

DR4 64 bit says -

30 Rxg7+ mate in 8.

Dec-15-16  whiteshark: That's an accurate move order.
Dec-15-16  morfishine: Plop, Plop, Fizz, Fizz, oh what a relief it is...


Dec-15-16  thegoodanarchist: This made me think of the fact that fewer than 15 years later, Kasparov would lose to a chess engine in a match.

Now I wonder if Deep Blue would have beaten Karpov in 1999? Karpov's style seems more "anti-computer" than Kasparov's style.

Dec-15-16  Cheapo by the Dozen: After 31 ... Kh8, I was looking at 32 Rg1. That's messier, because I was assuming that 32 ... Bf8 fails to a bishop exchange, but it's not clear that Black HAS to recapture the bishop.
Dec-15-16  YetAnotherAmateur: In this position, the key is not giving black the tempo to play Bf8. As long as black can't play that move, its pieces are almost entirely stuck on the wrong side of the board.

Hence, the forcing move 30. Rxg7 has to be the start. <agb2002> solved this much more thoroughly than I did, but the principle is certainly clear.

Dec-15-16  Autoreparaturwerkbau: @<Jim Bartle (Mar-10-09): So Kasparov sacrificed three pieces, yet still mated without ever moving his king rook.>

Actually Kasparov's king rook made no less than 3 moves before it settled to final <h1>-square once again.

Premium Chessgames Member
  saffuna: Oops. You are correct. Castled, too.
Dec-15-16  YouRang: Thursday 30.?

click for larger view

A typical puzzle position: The opposing king's defense is a bit thin as most of his pieces have wandered off to the other side of the board. Meanwhile, our side has a number of pieces aimed directly at the opposing king. A sure sign that a sacrifice is in order!

We may as well try starting with the most forcing: <30.Rxg7+ Kxg7> (true, black doesn't have to recapture, but if not then I've gained a huge pawn and can look forward to a pleasant attack).

click for larger view

Now what? The most attractive choices are Bh6+ and Rg1+, and of these I favor <31.Bh6+> mainly because (1) it helps bring my queen into the attack, (2) by cutting off f8, I reduce black's options to g8 or h8 -- and g8 looks awful -- so <31...Kh8> it is.

click for larger view

Again I have choices. I went with <32.Rg1> with the idea of Bg7 and Qh6, and at this point, I'm satisfied that I have a winning attack underway.


I see that Kasparov opted for <32.Bg7+>, which wins a bit faster. I was intent on not letting the king run to the queenside, but Kasparov noticed that the queenside offered no shelter from a simple back-rank mate. That Kasparov was pretty good.

In my 32.Rg1 line, it may continue with a curious "windmill" effect with my LSB: 32...Rg8 33.Bg7+ Rxg8 34.Qh6+ Rh7 35.Bxh7 (threat Qg7#) Bd8 36.Bf5+ Nh7 37.Bxh7 Rg7 (not 37...Rxh7? 38.Qf8#) 38.Bf5+ Kg8 39.Qh7+! (thanks to pin on Rg7) 40.Qh8+ Ke7 (40...Rg8? 41.Qxg8+ Ke7 42.Qf7#) 41.Rxg7+ Kf6 42.Qf8+ Qf7 43.Qxf7#

click for larger view

Dec-15-16  Jacob Sasportas: How nice to see this game here! Back in 1985, Kasparov played blindsimul against Mephisto and against nine humans. There was one draw and nine games won by Gary - and one of the losing Hamburg chess players was me...
Dec-15-16  morfishine: 2 well known
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: <Jacob> how did you get into the simul? Did Kaspy talk to any of the participants afterward?
Dec-15-16  ChessHigherCat: In black's final position, it looks like Mephisto composed an anagram of its name: "sh** poem" (the censureship function won't let me post the actual no-no word but savvy readers and anagramists can figure it out)
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: I doubt that ends up as a Christmas Hunt Clue.
Dec-15-16  izimbra: I wonder what portion of this game was prep...<24...Qb6> - the 2nd time Mephisto moves to the Q to b6, is a losing move, and the machine doesn't see why because the tactics are over it's horizon and the positional heuristics don't include <all W pieces pointed at the Kingside...maybe moving forces to the Qs with no specific tactic isn't a good idea>. After <24...Qb6> W has a variety of different paths that lead to a win - Bxh6, g5, etc.

In the Deep Blue match, Kasparov went on record with his frustration that the engine didn't play the same moves as it did in practice, which he claimed was cheating, though the match rules didn't specify no adjustments or no randomness.

Personally, I like these <GM shows us positional traps games> at least as much as real games. They provide a lot of insight, even if a GM can play them blindfolded.

Premium Chessgames Member
  doubledrooks: 30.Rxg7+ is my choice For example, 30..Kxg7 31.Bh6+ Kh8 32.Bg7+ Kxg7 33.Qg5+ Kf8 34.Qh6+, as in the game.
Dec-15-16  thegoodanarchist: <ChessHigherCat: In black's final position, it looks like Mephisto composed an anagram of its name: "sh** poem" (the censureship function won't let me post the actual no-no word but savvy readers and anagramists can figure it out)>

Best post of December so far!! Hilarious!

Dec-15-16  RookFile: The quiet move 30. c4 is also a won position for white, but 30. Rxg7+ is stronger and more direct.
Dec-16-16  Jacob Sasportas: <OhioChessFan> I was a mediocre player even in 1985 when I was 33 years old. But the blindsimul was arranged by a Hamburg newspaper where I worked as a journalist. Kasparov talked to us after the event - less exhausted than most of us. To the one player who reached a draw against him - Hamburg's female youth champion - he showed how she missed a certain win in the endgame. And the rest of us hardly understood his reasoning...
Dec-17-16  SimplicityRichard: Wow! And this was done blindfold!! Amazing skill. I could not see that combination with "my eyes open" or OTB. I knew the Rook sacrifice was key simply because I am solving a puzzle. Impressive!#
Mar-03-20  Chesgambit: Typical Kasparov game
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