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Alexander Kotov vs Vasily Smyslov
Budapest Candidates (1950), Budapest HUN, rd 16, May-11
Nimzo-Indian Defense: Classical. Zurich Variation (E33)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Kotov arms the kingside and looses his bearings. An element is the white horse gnashing the queen thus i'm a supporter of Rf2+. The knight heralds off the rook and shields the king..Kxf2 Rxb2+ Qe2. The motto is ride the crest of a wave and Smyslov's invicta with 1/0/.5 it was against Kotov in 1950's Candidates. Ship over board the majesty..Rxe2 Kxe2 Qg2+ with Vasily in the helm it pulls off a masterstroke considering at move 38 what he had.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: I took the pipe on this one-my Rb2?? falls victim to the mate in two at h7.


Mar-30-10  turbo231:

< johnlspouge >

Thank you for that info and also for helping me with my game. You're a very good person. I think < once > also helped me with my game. And others, thank you all!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: As <Random Visitor> indicated back in 2007, 31 Nh6! wins for white (and makes for a good puzzle position).

click for larger view

For example, if 31...Rg7 (to protect against f5), then 32 Qc2 (threatening Bxh7), wins.

click for larger view

If 31 Rxg3, then 32 Rxg3 (threatening mate next move) 32...Ng6 33 f5 wins.

click for larger view

Mar-30-10  VincentL: In this "easy" position, white is a rook down, but is threatening mate, and can also capture the black queen.

The move I see is 42....Rf2+ The only legal response is 43. Kxf2

Then 43.....Rb2+.

If 43. Kf3 Qg2 mate
If 43. Ke1 Qg1 mate
If 43. Kf1 Qg1+ 44. Ke1 Qg1 mate

The only way white can prolong the game is with 43. Qe2. But after 43....Rxe2 44. Kxe2 black has a material advantage of Q + P for R.

Time to check.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Breunor: Can anyone help on this - why does Smyslov play 13 Bb6, which looks like it blocks in the bishop, instead of Bc7, putting it on the long diagonal? Is he trying to prevent e4 (maybe f3 then e4)?

Thanks for any help.

Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: < <Breunor> wrote: Can anyone help on this - why does Smyslov play 13 Bb6, which looks like it blocks in the bishop, instead of Bc7, putting it on the long diagonal? >

The move caught my eye, too, and Smyslov was insistent about the B on b6. Toga, however, had a clear preference (+0.3 P or so) for 13.Bc7 over 13.Bb6.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: <Breunor: Can anyone help on this - why does Smyslov play 13 Bb6?>

It's an interesting question. Fritzie certainly prefers 13...Bc7. After a few minutes chewing on it, 13...Bc7 is slightly ahead with = 0.25, with 13...Bb6 in second place as 0.53. The problem with 13...Bb6 for the engine is that a subsequent white Na4 either allows the bishop to be exchanged or prompts black to play Bc7 anyway.

I guess it comes down to personal preferences. Fritz, being a mostly cold-hearted materialist, probably rates bishops slightly more than knights and doesn't want to double pawns. Smyslov probably wanted to inhibit white from playing the pawn break e4 as you have suggested. My guess is that he wouldn't have minded if his b pawns were doubled, as that would give him an open a file and make it risky for white to castle on either wing.

Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: Maybe he wanted to keep the option
of queenside O-O-O.
(because kingside was broken pawns)

After Rc1 white may have tactics
with Nb5.

Probably wanted to keep him guessing.

Mar-30-10  Patriot: 13...Bb6; That's a strange move since the bishop hits a wall of pawns. I used to play similar moves and my coach told me it's a positional mistake. That is, of course, unless there is a tactical reason. I wondered if he was considering ...c5 or ...Bxd4 at some point.
Premium Chessgames Member
  eternaloptimist: This puzzle took me ~7 or so minutes to figure out, a good bit longer than the avg. easy puzzle takes me to solve. Although, once I saw 42...♖f2+!, it was easy to see the following moves. It's a good deflection sac that gets the ♔ on its 2nd rank so it can be checked by the other ♖ & the ♕ can deliver the fatal blow.
Mar-30-10  fyad reject: stared at this for ten minutes looking for some mate with Qg3 or Rg3, then considered possible good-looking preparatory moves like Bxf4 or Rb2 but couldnt find anything

looking at all possible checks, i eventually found the "solution" but gave up in despair because it seemed like it just trades two rooks for a queen after 44. ... Rxe2 45. Kxe2 and i couldnt find a mating continuation

i saw that we are already up a ton of material and making disadvantageous trades can be good when it clears the board but i felt like there had to be something better. guess i was wrong

Premium Chessgames Member
  eternaloptimist: <fyad reject> Yes, examining all the checks is how I figured this puzzle out. I try to ALWAYS examine ALL checks & captures on every move (where applicable). A chess player who used to play in tournaments told me that a long time ago, & it has stuck w/ me ever since. Does anybody know which chess book 1st mentioned that?
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: agb2002: <turbo231: < agb2002: (CG) The games Kotov vs Smyslov, 1953 and Kotov vs Smyslov, 1953 are the same.> I'm confused what are you trying to say? >

The same game appeared twice in the database (#1084362 and #1084365). CG has deleted the game #1084365 and my original post, that one you refer to.

Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: < <agb2002> wrote: [snip] The same game appeared twice in the database (#1084362 and #1084365). CG has deleted the game #1084365 and my original post, that one you refer to. >

Hi, <agb2002>. I posted about your original post. <CG> deleted my reply also.

Let's see how many times we can refer to your original post, before they give up ;>)

Mar-30-10  micartouse: This took a a little less than a minute for me. The key was to realize the following points:

-Black has to find something forcing or will lose.
-When three heavy pieces are gunning for the enemy king, one is often sacrificed either as a clearance or guard removal. Here, the queen is in back, suggesting that its superior checking power is being blocked by the friendly rook.

With this in mind, I looked at the possible rook sacs and noticed that ...Rf2+ is the key.

Mar-30-10  Patriot: <fyad reject> It sounds like you did pretty good!
Mar-30-10  ruzon: <TheaN: <45....Qg2† 46.Kd3> 46.Ke1 (46.Kd1 Qf1† 47.Kd2 Qf2† winning the Rook) 46....Qg1† winning the Bishop.>

Even better is 46...Ba5+ Kd1 47. Qd2#.

Mar-30-10  remolino: ...Rf2+
Mar-30-10  Cushion: Rf2+ appears to force mate nicely.
Mar-30-10  lippizan: <kevin86: I took the pipe on this one-my Rb2?? falls victim to the mate in two at h7.


Same here. Didn't realize that the Bishop is eyeing at h7.

OUCH, too.

Mar-30-10  MaxxLange: a very good puzzle. Smyslov week is going to be so great!
Mar-30-10  Skylark: After Qe2 blocking the check, I further analysed that Rx Kx Qg2 and Ba5 leads to mate in pretty much every variation... am I wrong?
Mar-30-10  turbo231: I beat RYBKA, CHESSMASTER, DRAGON 46,ENGINE CLASSIC2,GNU,ANMON560,CRAFTY, then I played Fruit2.3.1 and was mated in the first game had to resign the second game!
Then I played fruit against GNU, fruit mated GNU with white. I played Fruit vs Rybka of coarse I gave Rybka black, after about 70 more moves it ended in a draw.

What Kotov and all the chess engines except Fruit did wrong was interpose with their Queen. Fruit interposed with his bishop at b1b2, black took the bishop and checked the King. White moved to the first rank e1 because black's rook was on c2 he couldn't do anything. White had a bishop at h2 guarding g1 so black couldn't use his Queen. all he could do was g7 white rh4-g4 Qg7-f8 rg4-g8+ Qf8xg8
ne7xg8 bc7-a5+
kd3-d1 rc2-d2+
kd1-c1 kh8xg8
The end game was as follows black had a rook, bishop and knight. White had a Queen and a dark square bishop. These computers are amazing. I don't know why Rybka didn't see the line or chessmaster and the others, but Fruit saw it. So no one solved this puzzle except Fruit 2.3.1

Mar-30-10  turbo231: I made a mistake I meant to say the bishop interposed at c3 not c2.
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