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Lajos Portisch vs Bent Larsen
"Bent the Wrong Way" (game of the day Apr-11-2008)
San Antonio (1972), San Antonio, TX USA, rd 15, Dec-10
Horwitz Defense: General (A40)  ·  1-0



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sac: 27.Rae1 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Apr-11-08  Petrosianic: No, it's a Bentnoni.
Apr-11-08  Petrosianic: <"They were more cautious than I. In the last round they did not even dare to take up the dice with white and they calmly lay low in their half point lead domain.>

Another factor to be considered is that Petrosian's last-round opponent Suttles needed a draw to become a GM. Who really wants to be the spoilsport that keeps him from getting it?

<Although Fischer, who showed up in the last round as a spectator, referred to them critically for this reason, it is not to say that he is right. If a man leads thoughtout a tournament he does not gamble in the last round with the results of his work up to that point of stake.>

Goodness knows Fischer has made that mistake before. In this game:

Gheorghiu vs Fischer, 1966

Fischer in an inferior (Mednis called it lost already) position, refused a draw around Move 10 that would have given him the Gold Medal, kept playing, got steamrollered, and had to settle for the silver.

The way Mednis reports it, Fischer refused the draw saying "No. There is much play left." Mednis' comment: Something like "Yes, but it's all on White's side."

Apr-11-08  Marmot PFL: Portisch had a big plus score against the Benoni, winning about 60% of the games against a handful of losses.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: It’s a perfect game by white. 27 Rae1 is absolutely magnificent.

After breaking down this contest, the last chance I saw for black to stay level was on move 20, by playing …Bf5 instead of …h6.

click for larger view

If white continues as in the text with 21 Ne6, then 21… Qe7. If 22 Nxf8 then 22…Qxe3+ 23 Kh1 Rxf8.

click for larger view

Now, it’s a real struggle.

Apr-11-08  pferd: <kevin86: A cute addendum: White must be wary of what piece he wins the queen with--it had better be the bishop:

35...Kg6 36 Be4+ and not 36 Ne5+ Kg5 37 Nxd3??? Rf1#>

Good point - except the rook is pinned.

Apr-11-08  Lightboxes: Forget about the queen,
Go for the king.

36.Qe8+,Kf5 (Anything else, check mate)


Apr-12-08  kevin86: oops,in my analysis I had written the incorrect move-here is the correct version:

37...♔g6 38 ♘e5+ ♔h5 39 ♘xd3??? ♖f1# -obviously 38...♔g5 self-pins the rook

Sep-10-13  docbenway: Apr-11-08
Premium Chessgames Member WannaBe: It have always struck/strikes me 'funny'. a game may get a comment, and not another one for a 'looooooong' time... So, the next comment, should come around 2013... =)
You are right that after the comments of 2008 it did take till 2013 exactly for the next comment. Smashing game!
Sep-10-13  parisattack: Larsen plays in romantic style but is outdone by Portisch at his classical best!

Portisch and Gligoric both had fantastic scores against the Benoni.

<docbenway: Apr-11-08
Premium Chessgames Member WannaBe: It have always struck/strikes me 'funny'. a game may get a comment, and not another one for a 'looooooong' time... So, the next comment, should come around 2013... =) You are right that after the comments of 2008 it did take till 2013 exactly for the next comment. Smashing game!>

See you in 2018, Good Lord willing, creek don't rise.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Everett: Portisch may have indeed been a killer vs the Benoni, but there was one time he was hoodwinked by the fox Bronstein, finding himself dead lost by move 19.

Portisch vs Bronstein, 1967

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: The quote from Portisch is cited in Egon Varnusz' collection of Portisch's games, with the ensuing comment by Varnusz.
May-26-19  Granny O Doul: "Fischer was quite taken by the game Portisch played, pointing it out that it showed his rivals the folly of their pusillanimous ways (these were not his exact words)" is how it was put by someone else. Golombek or Barden? I'm not sure.
Apr-01-23  Brenin: I quickly saw 27 Rae1, with the idea of trapping the Black Q, and then realised that after 27 ... Nxe1 28 Rxe1 Qd3 (her only safe square) the e-pawn can cause mayhem. An immediate 29 e7 fails to Rxf7 30 e8=Q+ Rxe8 31 Rxe8+ Rf8, but 29 Qh5 protects the B on f7 and leaves Black with no adequate defence against e7.
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: I went with 29. e7 Rxf7 30. e8=Q+ Rxe8 31. Rxe8+ Kh7. Now I wanted to play 32. Ng5+, continuing with 33. Nxf7, but that allows 33...Qf1#.
Apr-01-23  jrredfield: I spent time looking at attacking the Black Q with one of the rooks. I ruled out 27 Rfe1 with 27 ... Qf2 28 Qxf2 Nxf2+ appearing to head to a draw. So I chose 27 Rae1 Qf4 28 Qxf4 Nxf4. NOw with the Queens gone, White has a deadly attack Kingside with an advanced pawn. I don't see any hope for Black at this point.

Looking back on the recent moves, I didn't see any obvious blunders by Black. White simply built a better position during much of the game and capitalized on it with 27 Rae1.

Apr-01-23  mel gibson: I thought it was one of the Rooks to e1.
Of course the f2 square had to be guarded so it was the Rook on a1 that had to be moved.

Stockfish 15 says:

27. Rae1

(27. Rae1 (Ra1-e1 Qe3-f4 Qh4xf4 Nd3xf4 Nf3-h4 Nf4xe6 Nh4-g6+ Kh8-h7 Re1xe6 Rf8-d8 Re6-e7 Ra8-a6 Ng6-f4 Ra6-d6 Nf4-e6 Rd6-d7 Re7xd7 Rd8xd7 Ne6xc5 Rd7-c7 Nc5xa4 d5-d4 Bf7-e6 h6-h5 Be6-f5+ Kh7-h6 Bf5-d3 Rc7-c6 ) +7.61/47 407)

score for White +7.61 depth 47.

Premium Chessgames Member
  scormus: Continuing the week's theme of W exploiting B's compromised K position. e7 is the obvious key, but needs preparation by focussing some forces on e8. So the natural route is 27 Rae1 Nxe1 28 Rxe1, with Qh5 to follow.

An interesting alternative to try could be 27 Qa5 immediately, intending Nf2+ 28 Rxf2 Qxf2 29 e7 Rxf7 30 Qxf7 Qe3 31 Re1. However, B's moves are not forced. I'll check later with SF

Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Gobby its jackal nut z its doot v quip its hems v its whiff for u x Rae1 fluff axiom jet cc gg fletch acrid mid axiom jah its a fog pig bad o u job Rae1 bet :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  scormus: OK SF confirms two things. the 27 Qa5 line is even better than the text, and ... Nf2+ would not be forced. 27 ... a3 would have been B's best try, conceding a clear but not overwhelming advantage to W.

It might have been tempting for W to dangle the carrot of quick reward to B, though I don't imagine Larsen would have fallen for it. The text is positively winning, while 27 Qa5 a3 would leave W with more work to do.

Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: I saw creche a farm a x Rae1 :)
Apr-01-23  agb2002: Black threatens Nxb2.

The first idea that comes to mind is 27.Rae1 to push the e-pawn:

A) 27... Nxe1 28.Rxe1 Qd3 29.Qh5 (protects the bishop and prepares Nh4 and e7)

A.1) 29... c4 30.e7 Rxf7 31.Qxf7 wins decisive material.

A.2) 29... Rxf7 30.Qxf7 Rf8 31.Ne5 Rxf7 (due to Nxd3 and Ng6+; 31... Bxe5 32.Qxf8+ wins) 32.Nxf7+ Kg8 33.e7 Kxf7 34.e8=Q+ Kg6 35.Re6+ Kg5 (35... Kf5 36.Qg6+ Kf4 37.Qxd3 wins) 36.Qe7+

A.2.a) 36... Kf5 37.Qf7+ wins the bishop with check.

A.2.b) 36... Kf4 37.Qf7+ Qf5 38.g3+ (37.Qxg7 Qb1+ 38.Re1 Qxe1#) 38... Kg4(5) 39.Qxg7+ wins decisive material.

A.2.c) 36... Kh5 37.Qf7+ Kh4 38.g3+ Kg4(5) (38... Kh3 39.Qh5#) 39.Qxg7+ wins decisive material.

B) 27... Qf4 28.Qxf4 Nxf4 29.Nh4 Nd3 30.Ng6+ Kh7 31.Nxf8+ wins an exchange at least.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: I thought about 27 Qh5 directly instead of the text 27 Rae1. I missed blacks's response 27...a3!, below, pinning white's b pawn.

click for larger view

So that help explains moving the rook to e1 first.

Apr-01-23  whiteshark: <<perfidious>: The quote from Portisch is cited in Egon Varnusz' collection of Portisch's games, with the ensuing comment by Varnusz.> That's right. And the bumpy translation is on my account. ;)
Apr-07-23  Retired Patzer: Didn't realize Fischer attended the last round of San Antonio 1972. Nice to learn that he was complimentary of Portisch's win two years after he lambasted Portisch for letting a win slip vs. Korchnoi in the USSR vs The Rest of the World match. Also curious if Larsen was still present at the board when he approached, and if this was their first meeting since the 1971 Candidates.

And also wonder whether he encountered Karpov, or did they not meet until negotiating terms for the 1975 World Championship.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <whiteshark....And the bumpy translation is on my account. ;)>

But is it really? That passage was written thus in Varnusz' work.

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