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Mikhail Tal vs Lev Polugaevsky
USSR Championship (1959), Tbilisi URS, rd 3, Jan-13
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation (B94)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Nov-23-04  familyguy: what beautiful calculating by tal with the classic sac on e6
Dec-19-05  Eatman: I am a huge fan (and actually countryman) of Tal, but I doubt Tal saw all of this to the very end here, it was probably a rather intuitive sacrifice as many of Tal's (of his own admission) were.
Apr-09-06  nolanryan: According to Crafty, Tal missed a great sac opportunity: 12. Nf5.
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: 12.Nf5 looks like a very good move. The idea is to take the bishop on e7 with the Nf5 or the rook e1 and then play Nd5+ winning the queen on a5.

This is not one of Polugaevsky's best Sicilians.

Nov-12-06  JohnNash: I also agree with nolanryan and off ramp

12. Nf5 exf5
13. exf5 Bxf5
14. Bxf6 gxf6
15. Nd5 (attacking the Qc7 abd Be7)....Qb8
16.Rxe7+ Kd8

White's pieces are now active, there is material balance, and now white has not much of worries.

Hey, I kinda like that Crafty thing, is it something you can shared through Rapidshare??

Mar-04-09  M.D. Wilson: What I find amazing is the fact that Tal's two wins against Polugaevsky in this database were 20 years apart (1959-1979). Incidently, these two years (1959 and 1979) were both memorable for Tal.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Fusilli: Wouldn't 29...Bxf1 get black out of the mating net? If 30.Nf5+ Kh5 31.Ng7+ = (31.h4? Rg8 and black wins.) If 30.Nxe8 Rxe8 (30...Bxg2? 31.Nd6 wins) 31.Kxf1 and playing that endgame is better for black than the risk of a mating net. Am I missing something?
Jul-09-10  Catfriend: <Fusili> You're correct, 29..Bxf1 does get Black from the mating net. However, the endgame's nasty to defend, and I imagine Polugaevsky underestimated White's threats enough to hope to extricate himself out of this.
Sep-18-10  talisman: <M.D.Wilson> you are correct sir.
Jun-17-11  lost in space: one of the seldom wins of Tal vs. Polugajewski. There is only one more win from 1979; all the rest are 8 losses and a lot of draws. Sigh
Premium Chessgames Member
  zydeco: <lost in space> Thanks. This was a surprise to me. I certainly think of Tal as a much greater player than Polugaevsky. It's surprising to see that Polugayevsky owned Tal. It's interesting that there were a few players whom Tal was helpless against throughout his career. Definitely Korchnoi and Polugayevsky. Does anybody else make that list? Maybe Keres qualifies - +3 against Tal.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Retireborn: <zydeco> There are a few other players (Lutikov, Nezhmetdinov, Nunn, and especially Seirawan) who had good records against Tal.
Oct-19-16  Pulo y Gata:
Nov-01-16  Howard: Keep in mind that Tal's track record starting in the mid-1960's was rather inconsistent due to health problems.

Granted, he did rise to #2 in the FIDE rankings on the January 1, 1980 list, but then his rating went down by over 100 points in 1980! Granted, his mother and brother both died that year, so that would have been a contributing factor I suspect.

Nov-01-16  Pulo y Gata: Torre's first win over Tal was in 1973. Granted that Torre did not reach as high as WCC but he was a formidable opponent to Champions and non-champions alike.Granted that Torre took care of his health to even post a formidable record with the most Olympiad appearances, even winning a medal in the 2016 edition, but one can hardly fault him for that...
Nov-01-16  raju17: 33....Rg6 was better
Feb-09-19  RKnight: <JohnNash> It's been a while since your post, but you missed a total crush for White in your line: 12. Nf5 exf5 13. exf5 Bxf5 14. Rxe7+ (if 14...KxR, 15. Nd5+ wins the Q), Kd8 15. Qxd6+ Ncd7 16. Rxd7+ Bxd7 17. Qxd7#.
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