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Tigran Vartanovich Petrosian vs Lev Polugaevsky
9th Soviet Team-ch final A (1963), Moscow URS, rd 5, Aug-16
Queen's Gambit Accepted: Janowski-Larsen Variation (D25)  ·  1-0



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find similar games 21 more Petrosian/Polugaevsky games
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Kibitzer's Corner
Mar-10-05  mellow: Very nice ending. Calm like a bomb.
May-20-06  fgh: Nice final shot.
Aug-23-06  notyetagm: I love Petrosian's play. Typically Petrosian castles late in the game but here he does not castle at all!

And the ending is magnificent. Here Black resigns after the thunderbolt 35 ♗xe6+!. It is based on one of my favorite tactical tricks: <a pawn on the 7th rank attacking an enemy knight on the 8th rank has -two- promotion squares to choose from (DOUBLE ATTACK)>.

White promotes his f6-pawn if the White light-squared bishop is taken using the tactical trick I mentioned above: 35 ... fxe6 36 f7 followed by either 37 f8=♕ or 37 fxg8=♕.

And if the White light-squared bishop is not captured, then Black loses all of his kingside pawns after 36 ♗xf7.

Aug-23-06  notyetagm: Anyone know if this game is in Vasiliev's book on Petrosian?
Dec-25-07  notyetagm: White to play: 32 ?

click for larger view

How does White (Petrosian) win from this position in just four(!) more moves? Simple: <PETROSIAN EVALUATES HIS FORCING MOVES LIKE A COMPUTER>.

He analyzes the <FORCED CHECKING SEQUENCE> 32 ♖d1x♖d8+ ♔e8x♖d8 33 ♕f4-b8+ ♕c5-c8 34 ♕b8x♕c8+ ♔d8x♕c8, which is shown below.

click for larger view

What does Petrosian see? He sees that these <FORCING MOVES> have dragged the Black e8-king away from the advanced and -very- dangerous White f6-pawn.

The result of this <FORCING PLAY>? Petrosian now has an instant win with 35 ♗b3xe6+!, as I discussed above.

click for larger view

Note how simple the win was to find by simply looking at -the- most <FORCING> line of play! :-)

I am harping on this idea of <FORCING MOVES> right now because I saw that NEW IN CHESS is going to publish a tactics puzzle book on this idea in March 2008. This book is called <"Forcing Chess Moves"> by the American Master Charles Hertan; details are available at

<Our Price: $ 28.95

Publisher: New In Chess, 2008
Edition: Paperback medium
ISBN: 978-90-5691-243-7
Pages: 360
Language: English

This is a radically different approach, aimed at finding the winning move more consistently. The basis is simple: always analyze the most forcing moves first.

The failure to consider key options is often due to ‘human bias’. In achieving chess mastery, the single most important task is to overcome that human bias (and staleness) by studying forcing sequences first.

This book teaches how to develop an eye for the TYPES of forcing moves you tend to overlook, and how to use ‘COMPUTER EYES’ to improve your tactical vision!

On the Author:
Charles Hertan is an American Master of Chess, and has been teaching chess for 28 years.

- a really new method in finding strong chess moves
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- timeless training instruction, does not outdate
- ideal for club and internet chess players>

Feb-19-09  arsen387: Outstanding final blow by Petrosian. I just wonder why not 27..Qxc1?
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <arsen387>
After 27...Qxc1 28. Rxc1 Rxc1 29. Qe4 looks strong, threatening Qa8+ or Bxe6.
Feb-21-09  arsen387: thanks <beatgiant>, I gave the position after 27.Rc1 to Chessmaster10 and it shows that 27..Qxc1 is the best move for blacks with following continuation 27...Qxc1 28.Rxc1 Rxc1 29.Qf4 (if Qe4, then Nxf6 gives a slight advantage to blacks with a probable draw) Kd7 (not Rhc5 30.Bxe6 fxe6 31.f7+ Kf8 32.fxg8=Q+ Kxg8 33.Qf6 and +1.4 for whites) and whites have only a very slight advantage, about +0.2. According to engine black's 31.Ke8 was a blunder, but already in a difficult position (+1.1). The lines are given at 13ply, so they can be not entirely right.
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <arsen387>
Your engine is right, 27... Qxc1 28. Rxc1 Rxc1 <29. Qe4> is weak because 29...Nxf6 and 30. Qa8+ doesn't do much damage.

But how about 27... Qxc1 28. Rxc1 Rxc1 <29. Qd6> so that 29...Nxf6 30. Bxe6. Black's position looks a bit shaky to me.

Feb-22-09  arsen387: <beatgiant> seems like your line is also a draw, interesting line is 29.Qd6 Nxf6 30.Bxe6 Rc2+ 31.Kf1 (Ke1 then Rxh4) Rxf2 32.Kg1 Rxb2 33.Bh3 Rb1+ 34.Kg2 and blacks can force a perpetual with Rb1+ and Rb2+, as whites can't move their K from that 2 lines in view of N or R forks.

Anyway, in case of perfect play by 2 sides, whites will have only a very slight advantage in view of black's bare K, which of course isn't sufficient for a win. Maybe by playing Rc1 Petrosian saw that he'll have at least a draw, and then capitalized on black's mistakes

Feb-19-11  Bryan14: what about 31.RXg6 - XG6 followed by 32BXe6 ..?what ever was the next black move .. 33.f7 would be a killing move followed by queen checks ..
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sastre: <Bryan14: what about 31.RXg6 - XG6 followed by 32BXe6 ..?what ever was the next black move .. 33.f7 would be a killing move followed by queen checks ..> If 31.Rxg6 fxg6 32.Bxe6 then 32...Qc2+ 33.Kf3 Qc6+ 34.Qe4 Qxe4+ 35.Kxe4 Nxf6+ is good for Black.
Feb-19-11  cunctatorg: A great game between a truly great player and one greatest!! A lovely game, a profound concept, a seemingly perfect conduct of the plan; like music or mathematics!
Jun-23-17  kungfufighter888: white move no.35 is the killer.
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