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Tigran Vartanovich Petrosian vs Pal Benko
Bled-Zagreb-Belgrade Candidates (1959), Bled, Zagreb & Belgrade YUG, rd 20, Oct-11
Nimzo-Indian Defense: Leningrad Variation (E30)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Mar-29-03  Fulkrum: Nasty little poison bishop. Petrosian uses it like a can opener for black's position.
Mar-31-03  uglybird: 26...dxc5 loses to 27.d6+ Qxd6 28.Rxb7+ Kc6 29.Qb3 and Black is helpless.
Aug-20-07  Whitehat1963: Interesting look at the Opening of the Day.
Oct-31-10  Rick360: 26. Bxc5! Big Petrosian fan here.
Oct-31-10  ounos: Truly amazing opening. Petrosian seems to make a point of going into the slowest play he can, making the opponent feel safe, safe enough to play 25. ...Rbf8, and then an instantaneous, cobra-like attack. Pretty.
Oct-31-10  ounos: Wow, and I hadn't seen the continuation. 27. Be3, black thinks "ok, at least the worst is over, I lost a pawn, but it's stable, now I need to attack to gain compensation - lets send the knight to do some damage!" and then the cobra attacks again. Ouch.
Oct-31-10  arsen387: Beautiful tactics, indeed
Oct-31-10  Jim Bartle: As Ounus said: Looks like Petrosian lulled Benko to sleep for 25 moves with all those tiny, seemingly harmless moves. Then boom!
Aug-26-11  qqdos: An interesting example of Petrosian adopting Spassky's trade-mark Leningrad-Nimzo opening. The first time they met (in 1952) Benko beat Petrosian with a Nimzo-Indian but didn't manage a single victory thereafter. This is a great game and I very much like <Fulkrum's> description of the Bishop sac. <ounos> and <cobra simile> the animal image of Petrosian that I remember is of a dozing crocodile with one eye half-open biding his time, waiting for the moment to strike!
Oct-31-16  cunctatorg: Imho GM Pal Benko played a great strategic game but the great strategist Petrosian convincingly outplayed him!!

Benko's 16... Kd8 and 17... Kc7 (an innovation back then or what?!?) was a bold decision, revealing a profound understanding of the position only to be countered by Petrosian's understandable decision not to castle but to play 19. Kd2; the final position finds Petrosian's king safe at ... a1 (!!) watching the siege of the artificial shelter of Benko's king... Personally I can't understand the position after Petrosian's 5. d5 which in fact permits to close the center for good and calls for attacks against the flanks where Petrosian possesses already the semi-open b- file... What's the assessment for Benko's 5... Bxc3 then?!?

Imho ... this is CHESS HISTORY gentlemen ... or ladies and gentlemen!!

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