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Zbigniew Doda vs Lajos Portisch
Hoogovens (1969), Wijk aan Zee NED, rd 14, Jan-30
King's Indian Defense: Normal. King's Knight Variation (E60)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Jun-22-07  Aas: I found the line used in the game, but also noticed that following Dzechiel's line probably would be better for black (as my fritz 8 later comfirmed). After 38...Rc3+ 39. Kd2 Rd3+! 40. Ke1 (Kc1/2 and white will loose his Queen) Then black plays 40... f6 and stops all mate threats against himself. No pieces has been exchanged, but blacks pieces are now very active while whites king completely exposed.

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(Position after 40... f6)

Jun-22-07  PositionalTactician: Aristachos, that is why I believe Rh3 first is correct. Then White will have no time for active plans.
Jun-22-07  Draw Odds: I noticed that 38...Rc3+ was a possible move. That's about all I noticed.
Jun-22-07  tarek1: <Aas>
the problem in the position is
41.Rxg8, then 41...Qxg8 is forced, then White plays 42.Qc2 and I'm not sure who has an attack actually. If 41...Kxg8, White plays 42.Rxg5+! Kg8 43.Rg7 threatening Rxe7. Once again, who has the attack ?
Jun-22-07  RandomVisitor: Black missed an earlier win with the solid 36...d5! play might continue 37.Rgh1 Ng2+ 38.Kd3 dxe4+ 39.Kxe4 f6
Jun-22-07  Aas: <tarek1>
If we follow your last line 41.Rxg8 Kxg8 42.Rxg5+ Kf8 43 Rg7 Then black attacks back with 43... Re3+

Now white king can either move away from the back rank which is met by Re2+ and white queen will fall, or he can move to f1 where black will play 44...Rxf3+ and 45...Qxe4 and then ruin whites attack. Last option is to play 44. Kd1 then black plays 44...Rxf3 Now if white plays its "threat" 45. Rxe7 then black plays 45... Rf1+ 46... Rf2+ and can now take the white queen, when white takes the black queen then the knight can retake and black is a rook up (white can't move his king in position to take the black rook because once he reaches the c-file black can play the zwichenzug Qc8+ (moving his queen away from danger) and then take the white queen with his rook).

So i would say black has the attack

Jun-22-07  rogl: <PositionalTactician> feel free to grab the g5 pawn. I will then pick up your rook with Qf6+.
Jun-22-07  gnixon: What about 38..Qe5 or 38..Qf6, closing the diagonal and threatening ..Rc3+?
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Holy Phil Rizzuto!! I answered a Friday puzzle! Something must be done about white's deadly mate threat in two by 39 ♖xg8+ and destructive attack at g7. The check 38...♖c3+ blocks the long diagonal and the defense of h8. The rook is immune under the penalty of 39...♘d5+ forking king and queen. White's attack is destroyed and black's pawn advantage will capture the flag at the end-so white struck his colors.
Jun-22-07  blair45: Chess is one long regret. -- Stephen Leacock
Jun-22-07  willyfly: Yes, I agree <PositionalTactician> specially since I missed 41 ♘d4 which spoils the line I gave.
Jun-22-07  YouRang: That's funny. I did see the white's threat (Qg7+), and I also saw 38...Rc3+ (with rook defended by knight fork: 39. Qxc3? Nd5+, note pinned Pe4).

But I don't feel like I can give myself full credit, because I didn't see 38...Rc3+ as being much better than simply 38...f6. In fact, I just saw 38...Rc3+ as a zwischenzug to improve position before making the necessary defensive move.

I settled on 38...Rc3+ 39. Kd2 Rd3+ 40. Ke1 and then 40...f6. And yet, I didn't see how to win at this point, so I figured that I missed it!

Jun-22-07  newton296: wasn't this easy for a friday? I just looked at tactics here and it leads you to the correct move. Black is up a pawn and white's rook at h8 is hanging but white threatens mate at g7 . hmm !? Rc3! blocks the mate and checks king so white looses the rook . 1 mover!
Jun-22-07  belka: Just to note, white's threatening a mate in 2 (Rg8), not just Qg7.
Jun-22-07  belka: Aas: from your position after 40...f6, 41. Rxg5 is possible. If 41...fxg5 42. Rxg8 with 43. Qg7# coming.

Black can try 41... Rxh8 but it gets messy. I think you need to be a computer to play this recklessly.

Jun-22-07  tritoch23: tritoch23: Glad I got this one

38...Rc3+ 39. Kd2 Rxh8 40. Kxc3 (40. Qxc3? Qa2+ 41. Kd1 [41. Kc1 Ne2+] Qb1+ 42. Kd2 [42. Qc1 Qxc1 followed by 43...Ne2+] Rh2+ 43. Ke3 Qxg1#)

and here I agree with <rogl> with 40...Rh3 where 41. Rg3 is forced. For example 41. Rxg5?? Qf6+ picks up the rook and 41. Rf1? Qxe4 wins.

After 41...Rh1 every black piece is good and every white piece is bad.

Jun-22-07  Crowaholic: Let's see. We have to give check or interfere on the a1-h8 diagonal since White is threatening mate in two different ways. Let's look at checking moves first.

38. ..Rc3+ looks quite evil. 39. Qxc3 is punished by Nd5+. What other options does White have? Basically approaching the rook and moving away from it, right?

39. Kd4?? Qc4# - nuff said (or Qe5# if you like to be fancy) 39. Ke2 Nd3+ - ditto

39. Kd2 Rd3+ 40. Kc2 (or Kc1) Qc4+ 41. Kb1 Rb3 42. Ne3 Rxb2+ and the extra tempo by the check allows Black's queen to escape (and actually win the knight!).

40. Ke1 remains. This looks more difficult - after Rxf3 White just counters with 40. Rxg8+ Kxg8 41. Qg7#. Nd3+ is not possible because our rook's on that square.

What about 40. ..Re3+?

41. Nxe3 Nd3+ is out of question for White.

And if the king goes to the 2nd rank it's Re2+ forking or skewering the queen, winning some material and resolving the mate threat at least. Upon 41. Kd1, the very least we have is ..Qb3+ 42. Qxb3 Rxb3 43. Rxg8+ Kxg8, resolving the mate threat and threatening to skewer the white backrank rook. OTOH, after 44. Rxg5+ Kf8 (..Ng6? 45. Nxe7+), and 45. Nh6 is countered with e6, but the position looks a bit too equal for my taste.

Or maybe this is the point of the puzzle?? Draw if you can't win?

Anyway, one white option is still missing after 39. Kd2 Rd3+ 40. Ke1 Re3+: 41. Kf1 and Black plays ..Re1+! and it's the royal fork one way or the other.

What could I've missed. Assuming that Rc3+ is the first move, and it looks strong enough to be so, how does Black actually win? I stare at the board and find no better check than Re3+ with equality, so maybe after 40. Ke1, I missed an interference instead? 40. ..Qf6 41. Rxg8+ Kxg8 42. Qxf6 exf6 seems drawish, though, while 40. ..Qe5 41. Rxg5 looks dangerous. 40. ..f6, maybe? 41. Rxg8+ Kxg8 seems to be forced, now what? The mate is cancelled, the g pawn is safe, the pawn structure is nice, too, Black is a pawn up and has some threats. This looks better than everything else so far. But it's still a far cry from being an easy win, if it's a theoretical win at all. I don't think I will find anything better than this, though, so let's check the solution.

Jun-22-07  Aas: <belka: Aas: from your position after 40...f6, 41. Rxg5 is possible. If 41...fxg5 42. Rxg8 with 43. Qg7# coming. Black can try 41... Rxh8 but it gets messy. I think you need to be a computer to play this recklessly.>

I don't think 41... Rxh8 seems messy at all. Black threatens to skewer whites king and queen with his rook on the 1st or 2nd rank (42... Rh1+ 43. Kf2 Rh2+ and then 44... Rxb2). Since white queen can't move away from the 1st or 2nd rank without beeing en prise whites only sensible move is retreating his rook and protect the king with 42.Rg1 After that white has no attack and is a rook lighter...

Jun-22-07  MiCrooks: Hey RealBrob, the threat is not Qg7+ but Rxg8+ Kxg8 Qg7++. Because of this your move has to be a check which limits the possibilities greatly. It looks like f6 might hold, so you would have that as a potential fallback in a game. But looking at checks you see Nd5+ due to the pin, but it doesn't lead anywhere, but you see that Rc3+ is possible (due to the fork at d5) and that DOES lead somewhere.

Thought it was kind of easy for a Friday as you didn't have to work much out and you were forced to find a check.

Jun-22-07  MiCrooks: Belka - I find nothing at all messy about g6 Rxg6 Rxh8 - +. White is crushed in that line.

Also, the win seems pretty easy to me after Kxc3. Rh3 then what does White do to defend? If he plays Rg3 then Black can favorably trade into a Knight endgame 4 pawns to 3. An easy win for a GM.

Jun-22-07  Crowaholic: Hmmm, I considered 39. ..Rxh8 40. Kxc3 but didn't like it enough to analyze it in detail. And upon checking the position with the Spike engine, I realize I missed the fact that in the line I settled on, the f6 pawn is now overloaded allowing 42. Rxg5+ (41. Rxg5?? Rxh8). On the other hand, after 42. ..Kf8, Spike still thinks that White has no hope (-5.5 at depth 16), whereas after the line given in the game and 40. Kxc3, the difference is only about -2. So, if Spike is correct, it seems Black's counterthreats (mainly withdrawing the rook and forking K and Q) are strong enough to easily make up for the lost pawn.

The main line that Spike gives after 42. ..Kf8 sheds some light on how the evaluation was obtained: 43. Nh6 Rxf3! 44. Rg8+ Qxg8 45. Nxg8 Nd3+ 46. Ke2 Nxb2 47. Kxf3 Kxg8 and Black is a pawn and a knight up in the endgame! Whoa!

Jun-22-07  Crowaholic: Sorry, the -2 for the line played in the game was at a lower depth (owed to the greater complexity of the position, it seems) making for an unfair comparison. At depth 16, Spike gives -4.4, not so bad after all. Both lines seem to be clear wins for Black.
Jun-22-07  benjinathan: I really appreciate the "thinking out loud" posts which have magically found their way into the daily puzzle. Thank you: <Gilmoy>, <dzechiel> <willyfly> and <realbrob> et al. I espescially like them when they contain hilarious stuff like this:

<Can Black win by force? Envision the N fork. If Ahnold cannot lug the deadfall above Predator, then Ahnold must lure Predator under the deadfall. To do this, he offers some bait (namely, himself): [B] 38..Rc3+ untouchable (39.Qxc3 Nd4+) (39.Kd4 Qe5#) (39.Kf2 Nd3+) 39.Kd2[], and:>

I think there is a market for a puzzle book written in that format...get on it. I guarantee at least one sale.

Jun-22-07  THE pawn: I didn't know what to do after 40.Kxc3.
Jun-23-07  patzer2: Black messes up
White's attacking plan and turns the tables with the obstruction sacrifice offer 38...Rc3+!!, threatening a winning Knight Fork if accepted and a decisive counter attack if declined.
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