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Viktor Korchnoi vs Lajos Portisch
Reykjavik (1987), Reykjavik ISL, rd 4, Feb-22
Sicilian Defense: Scheveningen. Classical Variation (B84)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jul-12-03  patzer2: With 43. Rxg7 Korchnoi utilizes a rook sacrifice and the "pin" of the bishop on f8 to force the black king into a 5-move mating combination.

Notice the subtle 45. Qe6+ which forces 45...Kh7, allowing Korchnoi to complete the mating web with 46. Qf7+ Bg7 47. Qxg7#. Nicely done.

Jul-12-03  patzer2: The decisive move for Korchnoi in this game was 33. Nf6+, gaining the exchange. If black had played 33...Kf7, then 34. Qg6+ Ke7 35. Ng8+ Kd7 36. Qf7+ Be7 37. Rxg7 would have won for white.
Jul-12-03  KnightBlade: I have two complaints about this problem. First of all, it is very easy; even a self-proclaimed patzer solved it (or so one is led believe from his kibitzes). Almost all of these problem positions can be solved by relatively mundane sacrifices, involving the capture of a piece and usually a check and or a threat of checkmate. I would appreciate it if, from time to time, there was a difficult problem that I had to think about. I saw 43. Rxg7+ within a matter of seconds, simply because there was only one real alternative. This brings me to my second complaint. Perhaps I may be wrong here, and if I am then I apoligize for my error, but it seems to me that 43. Bd4! is equally effective, if less spectacular. I see no way for Black to avoid checkmate, which is now threatened by 44. Rxg7+ Kh8 45. Qxf8#. 43...Kh7 is obviously met by 44. Qxf8 and 45. Qxg7#. In fact, 43. Bd4! would actually mate faster than Korchnoi's move if Black didn't have 2 spite checks, i.e; 43...Qe2+ 44. Kxe2 Bf3+. Even with the pointless prolonging, it is still at the most a mate in 5, the same as 43. Rxg7+. Problems should only have ONE solution, unless otherwise stated.
Jul-12-03  euripides: 43 Bd4 Qxf4+
Jul-12-03  KnightBlade: LOL yeah I thought something was wrong there... its pretty obvious too i cant believe i didnt notice that...but about my first complaint they really need to make problems more diverse than fischer's "sac, sac, and mate" theory. I would suggest that anyone read "How to Become a Deadly Chess Tactician" by David Lemoir. The book talks a lot about so-called "silent sacrifices", which are more difficult to find and consequently more difficult for your opponent to foresee. A silent sacrifice is any sacrifice which is not accompanied by a check or a capture. There are many motifs that are familiar to silent sacrifices, such as substitution, decoy, deflection, diversion, unpinning, unguarding, and shunning.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: KnightBlade: you want harder problems, but you also want problems without multiple solutions. That's a tough order to fill. As the problems increase in complexity you usually have an attacking-type scenario where multiple avenues of attack are viable.
Jul-14-03  drukenknight: well maybe you can have your cake and eat it too. I think the reason there are multiple solutions here is that clearly Portisch has alread messed up bad before all this happens.

A more challenging idea is to figure out where Portisch messed up so bad that the game is lost. very superficially, but why doesnt black simply 35...Qa1+? if you're going to move the Q why not to there?

I notice the final mating theme of diagonal attackers, but I cannot help but see similar diagonal motiff in this move. Coincidence?

Jul-14-03  KnightBlade: Sneaky, there are PLENY of examples of difficult problems with only one solution. There might be multiple lines and variations to consdier, and often the solution is only to get a better endgame with winning chances, or even to salvage a draw out of an inferior position, as opposed to these problems where White's (or Black's) only goal is either to checkmate or to win a uge amount of material. But most problems have ons solution, or, to be more accurate, one solution that is claerly superior to all the alternatives, i.e; maybe you'll see a problem with White to move, and he has one continuation that will give him a little advantage, and one continuation that will land a knock out blow and assure him the win.

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