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Tigran Vartanovich Petrosian vs Bent Larsen
Nimzowitsch Memorial (1960), Copenhagen DEN, Aug-??
Old Indian Defense: Tartakower-Indian (A54)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Petrosian's 25. Nf6+!! is given as the
solution to number 1774 in Chess Informant's 1980 Encyclopedia of Chess Openings. It is classified under the theme "Demolition of Pawn Structure."
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: If 25...Bxf6, then 26. gxf6 Ne7 [26...Rxd3 27. Qg5 Kf8 (27...g6 28. Qh6 ) 28. Qxg7+ Ke8 29. Qg8+ Kd7 30. Qxf7+ Kd8 31. Qg8+ Kd7 32. e6+ Kd6 33. Ne4#] 27. Ne4!? Ng6 28. Rh3 Rd1+ 29. Kf2 Rd2+ 30. Ke1 Re2 31. Kf1 gxf6 32. Nxf6+ 33. Qxe2 h5 34. Rxh5 is Fritz 8's winning line (+7.22 @ 15 depth & 1254kN/s).

Notice the strength of Petrosian's followup with the quiet but strong 26. Rh3! Black's position with shattered kingside pawn structure and a piece majority cluttered and undeveloped on the Queenside is a mess.

If 26...Rd1+, then 27. Nxd1 Kf8 28. Qxh7 wins big.

Petrosian uses a second strong quiet move in 28. g6!! to continue the attack, even though the simple but less effective 28. gxf6! also seems to win. Note that 28...fxg6 is answered with 29. Qxg6+! (the simple 29. e6! also wins here) 29...Kd7 30. Qf5+ Ke8 31. Qe6 Rd1+ 32. Nxd1 Kf8 33. Rh8+ Kg7 34. Qg8#

Perhaps a stronger winning move than the 29. g7!? played by Petrosian would have been 29. exf6! One pretty possibility here is 29. exf6! Nd6 30. Re3+ Kd7 31. Qh3+ Nf5 32. Qxf5+ Kd6 33. Ne4#.

If 30...fxe5, then 31. Ne4! Rd1+ 32. Kg2 Qe7 33. Qg4 f5 34. Qxd1 fxe4 35. Rh8+ Kf7 36. Qh5+ Ke6 37. f5+ Kd6 38. Rxc8 is winning.

With 31. Ne4! Petrosian brings in a third not-so-quiet but strong move to continue the dismantling of the Black King position.

In the final position, after 34...Kc7 White wins by trapping and winning the Black Queen via 35. Re8! Rd2+ 36. Ke3 Rd7 37. Rxe7 Rxe7 38. h4 and marching the passed pawn to the promotion square.

Jul-29-04  uponthehill: I think that Larsen is the one who gave us more spectacular defeats than any other player (I have some in my mind, e.q. Larsen-Spassky 1970) :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: Tigran certainly ate his wheaties the morning of this game!
Mar-09-07  ughaibu: Did AJ have access to Bent's cheerios?
Nov-14-07  arsen387: Incredible combination by Petrosian. Slow moves which step by step grow up to an unstoppable attack.
Jul-05-08  Ulhumbrus: 25 Nf6+! displaces the g7 pawn so that after Rh3, Black lacks the move ..h6 as a defence, there neing no pawn on g7 to defend a pawn on h6.

28 g6 attacks the f7 pawn which obstructs the a2-g8 diagonal. If Black remives this obstruction from the a2-g8 diagonal by 28...fxg6, on 29 Qg8+ Kd7 the Q is able to make use of the a2- g8 diagonal to support a pawn on e6 and so to play 30 e5-e6 mate.

Jun-03-13  Absentee: This is one of the games that reminded me of Spassky's comment about Petrosian being first of all a great tactician. Splendid.
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: 34...Kc7 does not help Black escape because now either 35.Re8 or Rf8 is decisive.
Jan-05-16  cunctatorg: Petrosian's tactical abilities are becoming pretty obvious since 25. Nf6!! Until then Petrosian's strategical abilities were ... glooming since Black (so much for being Bent Larsen!...) had been completely outplayed... Brrrhhhh...
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: Larsen's 8..Bh5?! was illogical losing a tempo as White wanted to exchange light squared bishops anyway. The game transposed into a bad form of the Philidors Defense for Black. 13..Nxe4 14 N2xe4..f5 15 Qf3..fxe 16 Nxe4 would just have accelerated White's initiative. 15..Nc5?! allowed White a kingside majority and 19..Nb6?! took the knight too far away from the kingside. 25 Nf6+ is certainly powerful but 25 Rh3 would also have won routinely. 25..Bxf6 26 gxf..Rxd3 (26..gxf 27 Qh6) 27 Qg5..Kf8 28 fxg+..Kg8 29 Ne4 would have been a pretty line.

A nice game by Petrosian but Larsen was unrecognizable.

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