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Miguel Najdorf vs Laszlo Szabo
Saltsj÷baden Interzonal (1948), Stockholm SWE, rd 12, Aug-02
Queen's Indian Defense: Classical Variation (E17)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
Feb-05-07  themadhair: Would you have taken a draw by move 45? This ending was described as 'An object lesson in timing' by the book The Right Way to Play Chess (first edition). And it is. The whole concept black uses is most instructive, namely to ensure that he obtains a passed e-pawn and not an f-pawn which draws. When I get that book back I'll post its analysis.
Premium Chessgames Member
  zydeco: Szabo has some interesting things to say about this game.

7....c5 takes advantage of the queen's absence from the d-file; otherwise 8.d5!

16.Rab1 is a mistake allowing 16....Nd4 17.Nxd4 cxd4 18.Rxd4 Bxg2 19.Kxg2 Qb7+ 20.Kg1 Qxb3 but both players missed the idea.

23.Bxe5 is a mistaken combination relying on 26.Nb4 but Najdorf didn't calculate far enough.

36.Qa6 is also a mistake, swapping the important e4 pawn for a weak pawn at d6. 36.h4 is much better.

40....Kf8 is inaccurate; black should have played ....g5 immediately: once white gets in h4 it's basically a theoretical draw.

You get the feeling, playing over this game, that Najdorf played impulsively and settled on the first interesting-looking combination he saw; he played 23.Bxe5 because he saw the aesthetically-appealing Nb4: he played 36.Qa6 because he saw as far as 39.Bf1 and the fact that black doesn't have .....Ba6.

Szabo seems very proud of how subtly he played: 11....a6 to prevent an attack on d6 via b5; and 17....h6 to avoid the idea of Ng5 and Nd5 when the f6 knight is overloaded; and the winning move, 56....Rb2, which is a feint against the h3 pawn in order to divert the white king to the h-file and prepare the advance of the e-pawn.

Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: 12..Nb4 provoked 14 a3 after which White's b-pawn could be attacked on the open b-file. 19 e4?! seems positionally suspect. 28 Qd3 looks like a wasted move; perhaps 28 Bf1. Black avoided 48 Kg6..f5+!.
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