Members · Prefs · Laboratory · Collections · Openings · Endgames · Sacrifices · History · Search Kibitzing · Kibitzer's Café · Chessforums · Tournament Index · Players · Kibitzing
Andre Lilienthal vs Rashid Nezhmetdinov
"Nice-mate-dinov" (game of the day Sep-29-2011)
URS-ch sf (1951), Baku URS, rd 17, Jun-??
Old Indian Defense: Two Knights Variation (A54)  ·  0-1



Click Here to play Guess-the-Move
Given 21 times; par: 44 [what's this?]

Get this game explained with Decode Chess
explore this opening
find similar games 2 more Lilienthal/R Nezhmetdinov games
sac: 19...axb6 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

TIP: If you find a mistake in the database, use the correction form. There is a link at the bottom that reads "Spot an error? Please suggest your correction..." Avoid posting corrections in the kibitzing area.

PGN Viewer:  What is this?
For help with this chess viewer, please see the Olga Chess Viewer Quickstart Guide.


Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 4 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Premium Chessgames Member
  kamalakanta: Regarding 17.Bxb7 h5, which, by the way, could not have happened, because he actually moved 18...b5, the quote in Pishkin's book is as follows:

" 17.h3...After a long think, Lilienthal believed his opponent and refused to take the b7 pawn. Let's examine what his decision means-was it a fatal hesitation or prudence? Observe:

A. 17.Bxb7 Re8! [Nezh gives the following variation in his analysis: 17...h5 but this is hardly correct: 18.Bxa8 Qxa8 19.f3 Bh3 20.Rf2 d3 21.e4 Nxf3+ 22.Qxf3 Bxa1 23.Nb3 Be5 24.Qxd3. The attack wasn't a success; the move 17...h5 derives no benefit for black] 18.Bxa8 [18.f3 does not strengthen the position: 18...Bh3 19.Bxa8 Qxa8! 20.Rf2 d3 21.Ra2 Bh6! 22.f4 Ng4 23.exd3 Nxf2 24.Rxf2 Bxg7 25.Nb3 Re3! with the most dangerous threat of Qe8]"

after some more variation, Pishkin writes: "So, we can conclude that Lilienthal made the wrong decision by not taking on b7. It would have been better to play 17.Nxb7 with equal chances. Now, the initiative is in Black's hands."

Until proven otherwise, I assume Pishkin's score is correct, and if I understood correctly, it agrees with Nezhs' book. Maybe Jessica can confirm this.


Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <kamalakanta> Thanks for the Pishkin score and quotes. Reading his analysis of the game makes it sounds like he is working from Nezhmetdinov's own analysis, so he probably does have an accurate score. Here's what we have so far:

1) The score given on this page appears to be analysis, either by Nezhmetdinov or based on his work.

2) We have three other versions of the game:

a) An alternate score given by

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 d6 3.Nc3 e5 4.Nf3 Nbd7 5.g3 g6 6.Bg2 Bg7 7.O-O O-O 8.b3 exd4 9.Nxd4 Nc5 10.b4 Ne6 11.Nb3 Nd7 12.Bb2 Ne5 13.Na5 Nd4 14.a3 c5 15.Na4 Bg4 16.Bxd4 cxd4 17.h3 Be6 18.c5 b5 19.cxb6 axb6 20.Bxa8 Qxa8 21.Nxb6 Qa6 22.Na4 d3 23.exd3 Bxh3 24.Rc1 Qa8 25.f3 Ng4 26.Nc4 Bd4+ 27.Kh1 Qd5 28.Rc2 Bxf1 0-1

b) Another 28-move version given by Pishkin, possibly based on Nezhmetdinov's own version:

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 d6 3.Nc3 e5 4.Nf3 Nbd7 5.g3 exd4 6.Nxd4 g6 7.Bg2 Bg7 8.0-0 0-0 9.b3 Nc5 10. b4 Ne6 11.Nb3 Nd7 12. Bb2 Ne5 13.Na5 Nd4 14. Na4 c5 15.a3 Bg4 16.Bxd4 cxd4 17.h3 Be6 18.c5 b5 19.cxb6 axb6 20.Bxa8 Qxa8 21.Nxb6 Qa6 22.Na4 Bxh3 23.Rc1 d3 24.exd3 Qa8 25.f3 Ng4 26.Nc4 Bd4+ 27.Kh1 Qd5 28.Rc2 Bxf1 0-1

c) A version found by <Chessdreamer> and <Albertfan> in various online databases:

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 d6 3.Nc3 e5 4.Nf3 Nbd7 5.g3 exd4 6.Nxd4 g6 7.Bg2 Bg7 8.0-0 0-0 9.b3 Nc5 10.b4 Ne6 11.Nb3 Nd7 12.Bb2 Ne5 13.Na5 Nd4 14.Na4 c5 15.a3 Bg4 16.Bxd4 cxd4 17.h3 Be6 18.c5 b5 19.cxb6 axb6 20.Bxa8 Qxa8 21.Nxb6 Qa6 22.Na4 Bxh3 23.Rc1 d3 24.exd3 Qa8 25.f3 Ng4 0-1

The differences among these are three transpositions and the length of the game. First, did White resign after move 25 or move 28? Here's the position after 25...Ng4:

click for larger view

Over-the-board, I don't know if this is resignable. There are a lot of possibilities for White, and Black's advantage is not at all obvious. By contrast, the position after move 28 is definitely lost.

For the transpositions, the alternate score differs from all the others. On sheer numbers the "others" are probably correct, but let's take a brief look anyway. I'll give the alternate score move order first.

1) after <5.g3>:

click for larger view

5...g6 6.Bg2 Bg7 7.O-O O-O 8.b3 exd4 9.Nxd4 <vs.> 5...exd4 6.Nxd4 g6 7.Bg2 Bg7 8.0-0 0-0 9.b3

2) after <13...Nd4>

click for larger view

14.a3 c5 15.Na4 <vs.> 14.Na4 c5 15.a3.

3) after <22.Na4>

click for larger view

22...d3 23.exd3 Bxh3 24.Rc1 <vs.> 22...Bxh3 23.Rc1 d3 24.exd3

None of these transpositions really seem to matter much. I think that 5...exd4 is probably more likely than 5...g6, simply because I've found that actual games tend to have unusual rather than "standard" move-orders in an attempt to transpose favorably. It would take some close analysis to find differences between the other two lines.

In situations like this where worlds collide, the most reputable sources are generally the earliest, or in most cases the players themselves. The Pishkin version, 28 moves with the move order likely used and possibly based on Nezhmetdinov's own work seems the best choice, but to be sure I think we still need to double check the score given by Nezhmetdinov himself.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kamalakanta: <Phony Benoni>, thanks for your hard work.

I will visit this page in the next few days, to see if there are any developments.

with gratitude,


Premium Chessgames Member
  jessicafischerqueen: Here is the score from <Nezhmetdinov's> autobiography- identical to that given in Pishkin, posted above by <Kamalakanta>:

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 d6 3.Nc3 e5 4.Nf3 Nbd7 5.g3 exd4 6.Nxd4 g6 7.Bg2 Bg7 8.0-0 0-0 9.b3 Nc5 10. b4 Ne6 11.Nb3 Nd7 12. Bb2 Ne5 13.Na5 Nd4 14. Na4 c5 15.a3 Bg4 16.Bxd4 cxd4 17.h3 Be6 18.c5 b5 19.cxb6 axb6 20.Bxa8 Qxa8 21.Nxb6 Qa6 22.Na4 Bxh3 23.Rc1 d3 24.exd3 Qa8 25.f3 Ng4 26.Nc4 Bd4+ 27.Kh1 Qd5 28.Rc2 Bxf1 White Resigns. 0-1

I think that <Rashid Nehzmetdinov> should be credited with being most likely to have the correct score for this game- since he freaking played it, and annotated it himself in his own autobiography.

<Nezhmetdinov's Best Games of Chess> Rashid Nezhmetdinov
Translated by Dale Brandreth
Caissa Editions, 2000
pp. 45-46

Premium Chessgames Member
  jessicafischerqueen: I'd like to add that ANY GAME SCORE between Grandmasters that ends in checkmate should AUTOMATICALLY be viewed with great suspicion.

For obvious reasons.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kamalakanta: Thanks, Jessica, for confirming that Pishkin and Nezh's books agree!

This shows a critical aspect of game- collection books: the author must be a thorough researcher, specially with older games....

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <JFQ> Thanks for providing that information. I have submitted a correction slip.
Premium Chessgames Member Thanks to some chess fans shining light on this game, we've determined that the score that we used to have was in fact analysis by Nezhmetdinov and not the actual game. You can see that analysis now by clicking on the "alternate score" link under the game diagram.

Normally this change would be straightforward; even if a few people played Guess-the-Move on a game we don't like to wipe out everybody's scores just because a few moves transposed. But in this case the real game is so very different (and shorter) than the previous score, it would not make to sense to preserve those old scores. So a few dozen people who played GTM on this one will have their scores wiped out and the par will be reset at zero. Sorry about that, and thanks to those who helped fix the record on this one.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <> Thanks for responding so quickly.
Oct-24-11  sevenseaman: White was certainly smarter than me. After the seemingly harmless <29. Qxf1>, it took me some time to see the two move mate via the 'h' file.
Aug-31-13 Nice pun. Reminds me of John Sterling's finest.
Aug-31-13  PinnedPiece: Interesting chess sleuthing going on in the kibitzing above. The title of this game was given to a completely different score, by the way.


Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: I got the first two moves, but in the wrong order.

White should have played 26. Nc6.

Aug-31-13  stacase: I missed 23...Ng4
Aug-31-13  Patriot: I also missed the 25...Ng4 line so I didn't see a clear win.
Aug-31-13  M.Hassan: "Very Difficult"
Black to play 23...?
Black has the Bishop pair for a Rook and a Knight.

threatening mate on g2
24.f3 Ng4
<if 25.fxg4 Qg2#>
25.Nb6 Ne3
26.Nxa8 Nxd1
27.Rfxd1 Rxd8
Nothing is gained by Black and have missed taking the Rook on f1 either.Something must be wrong which means the solution is not correct.

23.......d3 would have made things easier which did not occur to me.

Aug-31-13  actinia: I disagree with the solution. I feel 23. ... Qa8 is more accurate. In the given line, white has various defenses, such as throwing in Qe2 at some point. In the Qa8 line I don't see a defense after f3, d3, and a black knight taking on f3
Aug-31-13  actinia: this could make the slightest of differences. it is always better to play a move that has to be played. at some point, Qa8 has to be played by black. the black pawn move d3 in some lines need not be played, for example, if white allows Qg2 mate. it's slight, but it might make the difference
Aug-31-13  RandomVisitor: After 13...Nd4 white is at a kind of high-water-mark - his game eventually falls apart. Here is how he might have turned tables:

click for larger view


[+0.40] d=23 14.Nd5 Ndc6 15.Nxc6 bxc6 16.Ne3 Rb8 17.Qd2 Re8 18.Rab1 Bd7 19.f4 Ng4 20.Nxg4 Bxg4 21.e4 Bxb2 22.Rxb2 Be6 23.Rc2 c5 24.b5 Bc8 25.Qc3 a6 26.a4 Bb7 27.Re1 (0:31:32) 360285kN

[+0.39] d=22 14.Rb1 Ndc6 15.Nxc6 bxc6 16.Na4 Bf5 17.Rc1 Bd7 18.h3 Rb8 19.f4 Rxb4 20.Bc3 Rxc4 21.fxe5 c5 22.Nb2 Rxc3 23.Rxc3 Bxe5 24.Rb3 Be6 25.Rb7 Bxg3 26.Qd3 Qh4 27.Qe4 Qg5 28.Qf3 Rc8 29.Nd3 (0:28:40) 316924kN

Aug-31-13  RandomVisitor: White might also try the messy 15.Nxb7:

[+0.91] d=20 15.Nxb7 Nef3+ 16.Bxf3 Nxf3+ 17.exf3 Bxb7 18.Bxg7 Kxg7 19.bxc5 dxc5 20.Qb3 Qc7

Aug-31-13  actinia: <RandomVistor> Can you run an analysis around move 23? it's a good foray into human intuition vs machine
Aug-31-13  morfishine: Oh no, not Nezhmetdinov again

Candidates: 23...Qa8 & 23...d3

I was unable to force anything decisive. For example, I thought 23...d3 <24.e4> allows White to hold the balance

About the only positive aspect of this puzzle (for me) is I was able to "see" how a timely Ng4 by Black was possible. Unfortunately, I couldn't arrive at the concrete move-order that wins :(


Aug-31-13  bubuli55: For some reason I got the first 4 moves of the continuation easily. Yesterday I flagged on the first move. So now I'm feeling good. And then I deviated with

27... Bxf1 28. Qxf1 Nf2+ 29. Kg2 Qxa4

which puts Black a piece up. I think Black can easily win with that.

But this is a Saturday puzzle. I should have known better. For me that 27... Qd5 is the very difficult move. Maybe if I had looked harder :)

Aug-31-13  DWINS: <actinia>, I let Stockfish 3 search to a depth of 28 and it has 23...d3 (-3.27) and 23...Qa8 (-3.11) as basically equal. I guess it's just a matter of taste.
Aug-31-13  mistreaver: Saturday. Black to play. Very Difficult. 23?
Boy, a Nezhmetdinov puzzle. White is an exchange up.Black queen should swing over to the kingside somehow. I thought the right first move is obvious:
23 ... Qa8
24 f3 (forced)
But then i decided to change the move order a bit:
23.... d3
and now:
24 exd3 Qa8
25 f3 Ng4
26 Rc4 and i can't see a way for black to continue
So maybe Qa8 is correct move
23 .... Qa8
24 f3
If black could magically put his pawn on d3, Knight on g4 and Bishop on d4 it would be nice but alas. 24... Ng4
25 Nb6 or smth
and i can't see a way for black to move further.
Time to see and learn something from the great master of a ttack. -----------------
Hmmm, i missed that if 26 Rc4 then 26 ... Ne3 wins.
I got the scheme right, but concrete move order was hard.
Jump to page #    (enter # from 1 to 4)
search thread:   
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 4 ·  Later Kibitzing>

NOTE: Create an account today to post replies and access other powerful features which are available only to registered users. Becoming a member is free, anonymous, and takes less than 1 minute! If you already have a username, then simply login login under your username now to join the discussion.

Please observe our posting guidelines:

  1. No obscene, racist, sexist, or profane language.
  2. No spamming, advertising, duplicate, or gibberish posts.
  3. No vitriolic or systematic personal attacks against other members.
  4. Nothing in violation of United States law.
  5. No cyberstalking or malicious posting of negative or private information (doxing/doxxing) of members.
  6. No trolling.
  7. The use of "sock puppet" accounts to circumvent disciplinary action taken by moderators, create a false impression of consensus or support, or stage conversations, is prohibited.

Please try to maintain a semblance of civility at all times.

Blow the Whistle

See something that violates our rules? Blow the whistle and inform a moderator.

NOTE: Please keep all discussion on-topic. This forum is for this specific game only. To discuss chess or this site in general, visit the Kibitzer's Café.

Messages posted by Chessgames members do not necessarily represent the views of, its employees, or sponsors.
All moderator actions taken are ultimately at the sole discretion of the administration.

This game is type: CLASSICAL. Please report incorrect or missing information by submitting a correction slip to help us improve the quality of our content.

<This page contains Editor Notes. Click here to read them.>

Featured in the Following Game Collections[what is this?]
H file attack
from Hitokiri Battousai's favorite games by Hitokiri Battousai
queen sac-followed by king chase to mate.
from Gorney Park by kevin86
Best Chess Games of All Time
by Timothy Glenn Forney
Old Indian Defense: 2 Knights Var (A54) 0-1 A timely Ng4
from Perky Old Mod Benkoni by fredthebear
Nezhmetdinov's best games of chess
by Bidibulle
98_A53-A55_OLD Indian Defense (aka Altindisch)
by whiteshark
23...? (Saturday, August 31)
from POTD Indian (Not King's, queen ,Bogo or Nimzo) 3 by takchess
ultrattacker's favorite games
by ultrattacker
Awesome mate
from DrChopper's favorite games of all times by DrChopper
23...? (Saturday, August 31)
from Puzzle of the Day 2013 by Phony Benoni
Great Games
by tedster
Best Chess Games of All Time
by 3sun3moon
Check mate II
by popski
This guy is great. Look for more of his games.
from GAM's favorite games by GAM
A beautiful attack!
from MJCB likes those games 20th century by MJCB
Every piece was put to work!
from Englishplus' favorite games by englishplus
0ZeR0's Favorite Games Volume 4
by 0ZeR0
from 53a_Middlegames: Positional Exchange Sacrifices by Del ToRo
Old Indian Defense: Two Knight Variation
from MKD's Favourite Games by MKD
Brazen: A classic Q sac, then a N sac followed by a pawn mate
from "Knot Two Night, Sweet Pea" She tells Freddybear by fredthebear
plus 96 more collections (not shown)

Home | About | Login | Logout | F.A.Q. | Profile | Preferences | Premium Membership | Kibitzer's Café | Biographer's Bistro | New Kibitzing | Chessforums | Tournament Index | Player Directory | Notable Games | World Chess Championships | Opening Explorer | Guess the Move | Game Collections | ChessBookie Game | Chessgames Challenge | Store | Privacy Notice | Contact Us

Copyright 2001-2021, Chessgames Services LLC