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Viktor Korchnoi vs Tigran V Petrosian
Moscow (1971), Moscow URS, rd 1, Nov-24
Semi-Slav Defense: General (D43)  ·  0-1

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Mar-25-03  ughaibu: Korchnoi has been a fairly popular player, I've never really understood why, his play seems artificial to me. Petrosian on the other hand has been a fairly unpopular player yet his style produced many attractive games.
Sep-18-10
Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: Korchnoi-Petrosian


click for larger view

beautiful 30...c3!

Analysis by Rybka 2.2n2 mp 32-bit:

1. (-11.06): 31.Rxc3 Bc4+ 32.Rxc4 Nxc4

Apr-10-11  Tigranny: How is Tigran underrated ughaibu?
Aug-30-11  ughaibu: I said unpopular, not underrated.
Aug-30-11  drnooo: you have to admit their record against each other is pretty astonishing for all practical purposes, even

even though K says he had to throw his match with P

Aug-30-11  Lt.Surena: drnoo says'even though K says he had to throw his match with P'

Now U R purely shooting from the hip !

Aug-30-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Lt.Surena: drnoo says'even though K says he had to throw his match with P' Now U R purely shooting from the hip !>

In what way?

Korchnoi has acknowledged that he indeed threw this result in return for future considerations.

It's unfortunate, really-Korchnoi vs Fischer would have made a thrilling go at it!

Aug-30-11  Petrosianic: Where did he acknowledge it? It wasn't in Chess Is My LIfe, and it wasn't in the two big interviews he gave to Chess Life & Review after his defection. The only source I've heard for it is Karpov, who a) wasn't there, and b) isn't the best source for examining wrongdoings by Korchnoi. The evidence of the games, particularly Game 10, doesn't really bear it out.
Aug-30-11  ewan14: I also thought it was Karpov who was the source
Aug-30-11  Petrosianic: I definitely heard Karpov say it in his own book (also called Chess is My Life). But he didn't say where he got the story from. I've never heard Korchnoi say it at all. He may have done, but I'd like to hear it in his own words before evaluating it.

The evidence of the games doesn't bear it out, as I say. The one he lost was a game that Keene put in Petrosian's Top 10. The next game is exactly what you'd expect from someone who wasn't throwing a match. He goes all out to win with White, throws the kitchen sink at Petrosian, the defense holds, the attack backfires, he's about to adjourn in a lost position, but instead says "I could resign here, or agree a draw", and Petrosian takes the draw, rather than accept the resignation that he was apparently offering. I'd like to hear that in Korchnoi's words. Was he trying to throw Game 10? If so, why didn't he just resign in the lost position, instead of that arm-twisting draw offer? And what moves were deliberately less than best in Game 9?

Going just by the games, I'd be more inclined to think that Korchnoi threw his 1974 match with Karpov. It was incredibly hard fought, the games were averaging almost 50 moves each. Then Korchnoi wins Game 21 to pull within a point, and bammo, the bottom drops out, and the last three games are drawn quickly, with very little fight in them. I'd like to hear his version of that. He does disuss that match in "Chess Is My Life", but he doesn't answer these questions.

Aug-30-11  Petrosianic: One mistake in previous. Karpov actually said it in <Karpov on Karpov>, not <Chess Is My Life>
Aug-30-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Petrosianic> When you mentioned <Chess is My Life>, that seemed odd-while I haven't seen that book in years, I most likely wouldn't have forgotten an assertion of that sort, and I agree-Karpov as a source for things Korchnoi is hardly what one might term impartial.

Never read the other Karpov book.

As to my source, I read it elsewhere on this site, though I don't recall on which page.

Very often, I wish I had access to all my books-relying on memory can be a tricky business indeed.

Jan-24-12  Everett: <Petrosianic> <Going just by the games, I'd be more inclined to think that Korchnoi threw his 1974 match with Karpov. It was incredibly hard fought, the games were averaging almost 50 moves each. Then Korchnoi wins Game 21 to pull within a point, and bammo, the bottom drops out, and the last three games are drawn quickly, with very little fight in them. I'd like to hear his version of that. He does disuss that match in "Chess Is My Life", but he doesn't answer these questions.>

It is funny that you say this. Here's some other information to support the possibility: According to Bronstein's posthumous book Secret Notes, Bronstein started helping Korchnoi again just before game 19, and was responsible for the sharp opening in game 20 and the analysis of the opening possibilities that helped Korchnoi miniature Karpov in game 21.

After this game, Bronstein recalls meeting Korchnoi with some fresh analysis to use in the match. Korchnoi ignored the material and simply wanted to walk with Bronstein, and did not request any further analysis or help for the duration of the match.

Now Bronstein did not mention the possibility that Korchnoi came to some agreement behind closed doors to no longer pressure Karpov, but Bronstein's account gives some credence to it, doesn't it?

Unfortunately, possiblities like this tarnish chess generally and Karpov's legacy in particular. I really enjoy his chess, as it shows something unique and special implicit in its style, but it is hard to ignore some of the "help" he received at various points up until '84.

Jun-06-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  bharat123: While trying the "Guess the Move" I tried 30..Bxg2(Threatening Bf3+)32.Qxd2 Bf3+ 33.Ke3 Qe7+ 34.Kd4 Bxd1 35.Rxd1 Qd7+ 36. Kxc4 Rxd1 Winning the rook. I was given full credit.
Dec-28-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Can someone clarify that this game is from the tournament of 1971 and not the match?
Dec-28-13  ughaibu: It is.
Dec-28-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Petrosian vs Korchnoi, 1971 was the only decisive game of the candidates match that year: the link beneath the players' names above takes one direct to the tournament page.
Dec-28-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: It was this comment that puzzled me:
<Aug-30-11 perfidious: <Lt.Surena: drnoo says'even though K says he had to throw his match with P' Now U R purely shooting from the hip !> In what way?

Korchnoi has acknowledged that he indeed threw this result in return for future considerations.>

It was the words <this result>...

Dec-28-13  Petrosianic: I've never seen him acknowledge it. He didn't say that in "Chess Is My Life", written after he defected. The evidence of Game 10 strongly that he was playing to win.
May-09-18  Petrosianic: <ughaibu>: <Korchnoi has been a fairly popular player, I've never really understood why, his play seems artificial to me. Petrosian on the other hand has been a fairly unpopular player yet his style produced many attractive games.>

Many attractive games, yes. But he also produced a lot of non-games, in the form of too many GM draws. Since he always played the board rather than the man, he didn't think "I can beat this guy", he thought "this position is equal". Especially with Black.

Also, his play is hard to understand. While Fischer and Capablanca were great players that players of ANY skill level can learn from, you really have to be over 2000 to appreciate Petrosian. Or 1800, at least.

I remember when I was rated about 1400, looking at this game, and being absolutely unable to make heads or tails of what was going on for most of it.

Petrosian vs Spassky, 1960

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