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Viktor Korchnoi vs Henrique Mecking
Korchnoi - Mecking Candidates Quarterfinal (1974), Augusta, GA USA, rd 13, Feb-13
Benoni Defense: Classical Variation. Czerniak Defense Tal Line (A77)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: Doesn't 40.Qh6 mate immediately. What am I missing?
Premium Chessgames Member
  technical draw: I dont' think you're missing a thing, but Korchnoi certainly did.
Nov-25-03  Spitecheck: Zeitnot
Premium Chessgames Member
  technical draw: Time trouble or not, he's still Korchnoi.
Nov-25-03  Spitecheck: I think Korchnois perpetual (habitual) time trouble cost him the world championship (acquiring). Fair enough he might be slower than Karpov and his mates. But there is such a thing as sensible management of the clock. There's not point playing near perfect moves for 30 odd moves then when you're flag's on a precipice play an absolute sham of move that costs the game. Atleast in this game the small blunder only mean't he had to wait longer to have a vodka after the game finished.


Nov-25-03  tud: Let's not be sure he did not have a vodka before the game. In Bucharest tournament in the 60s he played drunk from round 1 to round 15, having a hat on his face to mask his eyes (the scent was however there). He did 13.5 out of 15. Probably the most interesting character in chess after Bobby.
Nov-25-03  Resignation Trap: This turned out to be the last game in the match. Mecking's move 19...Ned3? was a crucial error. Instead 19...Nf3+! was the right continuation.
May-01-04  vonKrolock: the Korchnoi i meet personally in 1979 was a tee or coffee drinker but a chain-smoker (once he smoke all his available cigarettes in a session, plus one that i offered him in the entrance-hall, while commenting something about the game whith him...
Feb-27-05  vonKrolock: Look also at Gligoric vs Book, 1948 and <capanegra>'s Game Collection "When masters overlook mate"
Dec-27-05  syracrophy: In the move 40. I suggest the simple and winning's a hard move to see, is it?
Dec-27-05  HannibalSchlecter: I once read an interview with Korchnoi and he was asked what his secret was to being so unusally strong for his age, and he replied something like "I do have a secret but I'm not going to tell you." It's a pity because if he does have such a secret it would benefit many many people, not just chess players.
Jul-04-06  gmgomes: Korchnoi about this game....

In this altogether nervy match, the 13th game proved to be the most tense and nervy of all. Mecking, as black, played for a win. It may have been possible but I did not manage to punish such a treatment of the opening. He gained the advantage, and the storm clouds began gathering over the white position. A critical point was reached, where Mecking had several tempting continuations. Among them was one which, after a forced variation, led to a position with an extra pawn for him. I don't know what Mecking saw at the board - after the game we weren't up to discussing it - but possibly, after a series of unsuccessful attempts in the match to realize the advantage of an extra pawn, he had ceased to believe in his technique, and decides that he must take me 'alive'. After lengthy consideration (during which time I had to sit with a neutral expression on my face, as if my position was not in fact hopeless) of all the possible continuations Mecking chose to try to increase the pressure. This proved inappropriate and I succeeded in equalizing and since my opponent persisted in playing for a win, I seized the initiative, and won with a mating attack. Only one hour earlier, the result of the match had been unclear, and suddenly it was all over. Both Mecking and I were dissatisfied with the result of the match, and we were both justified in being upset. Throughout the match Mecking had outplayed me; the reasons for his defeat were lack of experience against strong opposition, and inadequate technique. To me, on the other hand, it was clear that, with the standard of play that I had just demonstrated, I wouldn't go far."

Does anyone knows when Mecking could have got the extra pawn?

Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Kortschnoi was upset when Mecking arrived for the game wearing a 'CafĂ© do Brasil' T-shirt. He said he thought about wearing a 'Drink Vodka Mockva' T-shirt in retaliation.
Aug-30-06  Albertan: <gmgomes: Does anyone knows when Mecking could have got the extra pawn?>

As Resignation Trap pointed out above the move 19...Nf3+! was better than 19...Ned3? because Black wins a pawn after:

19... Nf3+! 20. Nxf3 gxf3 21. g3 Bxb2 22. Qxb2 Qxf5 (White cannot play 23.gxf4?? because of 23...Qxg4+ 24.Kh1 (24.Kf1 Qg2#) 24...Qg2#).

In this game Korchnoi missed a forced checkmate starting on move 38 with 38.Qg5+ the game would have ended after ..

38. Qg5+ Kh7 (38... Kh8 39. Qh6+ Kg8 40. Ne7#) 39. Qh6+ Kg8 40. Ne7#)

Dec-07-08  WhiteRook48: 4 checks in a row!
May-20-09  WhiteRook48: maybe Korchnoi wanted a better finish
Sep-24-20  chessperson2222222: Here's another one where Korchnoi missed a mate in 1- he missed Qe1# on move 51. Interestingly, he covers this game in one of his books and doesn't even acknowledge this.

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