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Stein Arild Aarland vs Alexey Shirov
Gausdal Troll Masters (1991), Gausdal NOR, rd 3, Jan-??
English Opening: Anglo-Indian Defense. Queen's Knight Variation (A16)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  wwall: Best was 25.Rb3.

If 26.hxg4, then Qf4 (threatening 27...Qh6+ 28.Bh3 Qxg3+ 29.Qh2 Qxh2 mate) 27.Bh3 Qf3+ 28.Qg2 Qxd1.

After 26...g2+, if 27.Kxg2 Qh2+ 28.Kf1 Qg1+ 29.Ke2 Qf2 mate. If 27.Qxg2, then 27...Nf2+ 28.Kg1 Nxd1+ 29.Kf1 Nc3 and 30...Qxd3+.

Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: maybe 25.Qe2

25...Qd4 26.Qe1 Qxa4 27.Ra5 Qd4 28.Qxg3

Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: I don't understand 25...Ng4. What happens after 26. hxg4 ?
May-14-19  goldfarbdj: 26. hxg4 Qf6 threatens Qh4+ mating. The only move to stave off mate is 27. Bf3, but then Qh4+ 28. Kg2 Qh2+ 29. Kf1 Qxc2 wins the queen now and the king a couple of moves later.
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: White should have played 15.gxf4, the typical move in this variation, instead of inviting trouble with 15.bxc5. Having written that, also having trouble seeing the refutation of 26.hxg4. However, 26...Qf6; 27.Bh3,Qf3+; 28.Bg2(Qg2,Qxd1+),Qxg4 looks like a powerful attack.
May-14-19  Skewbrow: I'm not sure about 26. hxg4 either. Surely the threat of bringing the black queen to the h-file is a big part of it. Black also needs to prevent white from bringing in reinforcements. May be 26..Qf4 27.Bh3 (otherwise ..Qh6+) Qf3+ 28. Bg2 (Qg2 Qxd1+) Qxg4. And now the threat of a queen check from the h-file seems to be decisive (to my ignorant eyes).
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: Black has a knight and a pawn for a rook.

White threatens hxg4.

The pawn on g3 blocks the action of the queen and controls squares already dominated by the bishop and the knight. This suggests 26... g2+:

A) 27.Bxg2 Qh2#.

B) 27.Kxg2 Qh2+ 28.Kf1 Qg1+ 29.Ke2 Qf2#.

C) 27.Qxg2 Nf2+ 28.Kg1 Nxd1+ 29.Kf1 Nc3 - + [n+p].

Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: 26...g2+ begins a pretty much forced sequence.

It goes 27.Qxg2 Nf2+ 28 Kg1 (or else lose the queen if 28 Qxf2) 28...Nxd1+ 29 Kf1 (if 29 Kh1 then 29...Nf2+ loses another pawn) 29...Nf2.

click for larger view

BTW.... 29...Nf2 leaves the possibility open for 30...Qf6 seeing 31...Qa1+.

May-14-19  latebishop: Al Wazir: After 26.hxg4 perhaps 26...Qf6 27.Bh3 Qf3+ 28. Bg2 Qxg4 when White seems lost.
May-14-19  drollere: <What happens after 26. hxg4 ?>

depends. Qf4; Bh3, Qf3+; Qg2, Qxd1+; Qf1, Qxa4 is bad. Qf4; Qe2, Qh6+ is fatal. in the game, Qxg2, Nf2+ loses the R and e3 to discovered checks; Kxg2 loses the Q.

May-14-19  drollere: <27.Kxg2 Qh2+ 28.Kf1 Qg1+ 29.Ke2 Qf2#.>

it's true, mate is better than the Q.

May-14-19  saturn2: I saw 26...g2+

27. Qxg2 Nf2+ 28. Kg1 Nxd1+ 29. Kf1 plus piece

27. Kxg2 Qh2+ 28. Kf1 Qxc2 threatening mate on f2

Premium Chessgames Member
  jith1207: Troll Masters?
May-14-19  Cheapo by the Dozen: The obvious move is 26 ... Nf2+, recovering the exchange and perhaps being a pawn up.

But if Black interpolates 26 ... g2+, the only response that doesn't allow mate or lose White's queen is 27 Qxg2. And having g2 blocked means White's king needs to go to g1 on 27 ... Nf2+, which makes 28 ... Nxd1 a discovered check, which creates a tempo Black can use to finish the sequence a piece ahead.

May-14-19  clement41: After 26 hg, black threatens to bring his queen to te h file but with a twofold idea: either ...Qf6 or ...Qf4 will win because after 27 Bh3 stopping the Queen coming to the h file with check, black then resorts to his second threat, ...Qf3+ Qg2 (Bg2 Qxg4 -+) Qxd1+. While 26... Qe7 or Qd8, aiming at h4, are insufficient in view of 27 Bh3 and it is white who is winning
May-14-19  Damenlaeuferbauer: Of course after long pondering my old friend Alexey, the second Latvian wizard in the history of chess after the immortal WC Michail Tal, who was pretty young, but already really strong in 1991, found the winning interference move combination 26.-,g2+! 27.Qxg2 (27.Bxg2,Qh2#; 27.Kxg2,Qh2+ 28.Kf1,Qg1+ 29.Ke2,Qf2#),Nf2+ 28.Kg1,Nxd1+ 29.Kf1,Nc3 -+ with a whole minor piece ahead. My favourite game of him is R. Ponomariov - A. Shirov, Wijk aan Zee 2003, D 44.
May-14-19  zb2cr: 26. ... g2+ forces 27. Qxg2. There follows 27. ... Nf2+; 28. Kg1, Nxd1+; 29. Kf1, Nf2 and suddenly Black's up by a Knight with good attacking prospects.
May-14-19  mel gibson: I saw that or 26...Nf2+.
The computer says it takes a long time to win -
there is no quick mate.
Stockfish 10 says:


(26. .. g2+ (g3-g2+ ♕c2xg2 ♘g4-f2+ ♕g2xf2 ♗e3xf2 ♖d1-f1 ♗f2-d4 ♗f3-g2 ♕d6-g3 ♖f1-f3 ♕g3-e1+ ♖f3-f1 ♕e1-e3 ♖b5-b1 ♕e3xd3 ♖b1-d1 ♕d3-c2 ♖d1-b1 ♖f8-a8 ♖b1-c1 ♕c2xa4 ♗g2-f3 ♖a8-b8 ♖c1-b1 ♖b8xb1 ♖f1xb1 ♕a4-a3 ♖b1-f1 ♕a3-e3 ♔h1-g2 ♕e3-d2+ ♔g2-h1 ♗d4-e5 ♗f3-g2 ♕d2-e3 ♖f1-f3 ♕e3-e1+ ♖f3-f1 ♕e1-g3 ♔h1-g1 ♕g3-h2+ ♔g1-f2 ♗e5-g3+ ♔f2-e3 ♕h2xg2 ♖f1-c1 ♗g3-f4+ ♔e3xf4) +15.06/39 139)

score for Black +15.06 depth 39.

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <26...g2+!>, and that's it.
May-14-19  DrGridlock: A little bit involved for a Tuesday.
Black is down the exchange for a pawn, but can win back the exchange with Nxf2 followed by Nxd1. This just doesn't seem enough.

We can get the queen involved along the b8-h2 diagonal if we move the g-pawn out of the way, and this comes with a tempo, since g2 is check and threatens mate with Qh2. White's Bxg2 and Kg1 are not any good, so Qxg2 is best. After this, Black can now use the Nf2+ / Nxd1 knight jaunt and instead of winning back the exchange he wins white's rook (going up a knight).

There's usually more (mate or winning a queen) in a Tuesday puzzle, and it usually doesn't involve working through three options to get there ... but this is it!

May-14-19  Momentum Man: You can solve this puzzle by using the technique of imagining the best way to improve your position one step at a time.

Obviously the biggest improvement for black would be to have the queen on h2. Can he get there? Yes, but for that darn pawn...

Letís lose it!

May-14-19  Momentum Man: @goldfarb

After 26.hxf4, I think...Qf4 might work too

Premium Chessgames Member
  swclark25: 26...g2+ 27. Kxg2 Qh2+ 28. Kf1 Qh1+ 29. Ke2 Qh2+ 30. Ke1 Qxc2 wins White Queen

Missteps by White will give mate earlier.

Premium Chessgames Member
  swclark25: I see <agb2002>'s better move at 28...Qg1+ gives mate sooner. Better than winning the Queen :-)
May-14-19  schachfuchs: After 25...Ng4 Black's position is already lost. The least bad continuation is 26.Rf1 Nf2+ 27.Rxf2 gxf2 28.Qe2 -+ -5.8

26.hxg4 Qf4 27.Bh3 (Qe2 or anything else 27...Qh6+; 27.Rxc5 Qxg4 28.Bf1 Bxc5 -+ -9.7) Qf3+ 28.Qg2 Qxd1+ -+ -8.7 is worse.

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