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Nigel Short vs Richard J Miles
"Give an Inch and He'll Take a Miles" (game of the day Dec-14-2006)
London (1976)
Pirc Defense: Kholmov System (B07)  ·  1-0



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Given 52 times; par: 33 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Dec-14-06  Chicago Chess Man: Could someone tell me why black doesn't try to castle queenside in this game? It seems that putting his king on f7 is suicidal. Short just posts his knights beautifully and begins to ravage the undefended kingside.
Dec-14-06  tatarch: Black might be up a couple pawns when white castles, but look at the huge advantage white has in space and development. I'm no computer but it looks to be worth at least a few pawns to me...

I think it's also criticial to look at this game from a psychological perspective. If you're Anthony Miles, you just watched some kid half your age give up his queen early in the game, but he doesn't give up--he keeps making threatening moves with his minor pieces and pawns, until finally you just can't stop him.

I personally am a huge fan of playing with 3 minors over the queen, so this game strikes a chord for me. Especially in blitz games, the player with the queen always seems to assume that he's got the game won, and before long he's got his pieces pinned and his queen under fire and mating threats on his king, etc. This game is instructive on that point.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Peligroso Patzer: <Champ Supernova: <familyguy> Well this variation of the Pirc is pretty well known. The chapter "Three for the Lady" in Weeramantry's [book] features a game using this line ***.>

It appears that the referenced game by Weeramantry is not currently in the database. Here are the moves of that game as given in Chapter 8 of Best Lessons of a Chess Coach:

S. Weeramantry vs. M. Schlagenhauf (Harrisburg, PA, 1977) 1. e4 d6 2. d4 Nf6 3. Nc3 g6 4. Bc4 Bg7 5. Qe2 Nc6 6. e5 Nxd4 7. exf6 Nxe2 8 fxg7 Rg8 9. Ngxe2 Rxg7 10. Bh6 Rg8 11. 0-0-0 c6 12. Rhe1 Qc7 13. Nd4 Bf5 14. Ndb5! cxb5 15. Nxb5 Qb6 16. Nxd6+ Kd8 17. Nxf5+ Kc7 18. Rxe7+ Kc6 19. Rd6+ 1-0

[If 19. Kc5, then 20. Re5+ and: (A) 20. Kxc4 21. b3+ Kb4 22. Kb2 Qc5 23. Bd2+ Kb5 24. Nd4# or (B) 20. Kb4 21. Bd2+ Ka4 22. Bb3+ Qxb3 23. axb3# - analysis by Weeramantry.]

Dec-14-06  Rocafella: What is more remarkable, is the fact that Short is only 11 years old...
Dec-14-06  Defiler: >chrisowen> <To me 11.0-0-0 gets treated with impunity. 6.e5 should see white get crippled it's only fair to say.>

If black plays 6.e5 I think 7.f4 becomes a very strong move.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Could this be Short's version of Bobby Fischer's Game of the Century?

White gives up his queen but receives three pieces and an attack that is on Miles like a duck on a Junebug.I would almost can it a "nonsac".

Dec-14-06  Rocafella: <kevin86> This is what I refer to as 'sac'ing your opponents pieces =P
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: <defiler> sorry but that doesn't seem to be legal - black can play 6..Nfd7 for example but not 6..e5~
Dec-14-06  Dres1: In this position the pieces are better than the queen.. black should play 6...Nd7, and gets a fine game.. Bc4 is not so scary against the Pirc.. i used to play the Pirc till i wised up and switched to the Sicilian
Dec-14-06  Rocafella: Must mean de not e6
Dec-14-06  LPeristy: Wow, Miles was absolutely destroyed in this game!
Dec-15-06  Defiler: <chrisowen>: <<defiler> sorry but that doesn't seem to be legal - black can play 6..Nfd7 for example but not 6..e5~>

I meant 11...e5

I misread your post.

Feb-25-07  IMDONE4: well, most of the time 3 pieces>queen, especially when there are alot of pawns on the board. the only times where 3 piece<queen is when the pieces r poorly coordinated, spread out, vulnerable to being taken, or the absence of the two bishops (2 bishops and a knight are much, much, much better than 2 knights and a bishop)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: Incredible game by Short!
Mar-26-07  timhortons: miles should have choose another defense, you dont use pirc on guy like nigel short....
Premium Chessgames Member
  Nigel Short: I recognise the game as mine, but it certainly wasn't against Tony Miles. Looks like yet another bogus attribution at
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eric Schiller: The opening of this game is very popular and was the subject of a lot of theory. There are tons of games, at least 100 with the main line. So it was surely not improvisation. I haven't found the correct reference, but it should be in Pirc literature from ca. 1980. The game through move 14 was repeated just a few years ago.

What is impressive for Nigel is not the queen sac, already analyzed, but his carrying out of the final assault. The real work was in the middlegame.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Jonathan Sarfati: Not just has falsely attributed the loser. I came here to check out what Andy Soltis bizarrely called it "the first Short-Miles game (London 1984)" ("Rethinking the Chess Pieces", p. 136).
Aug-05-07  Tomlinsky: I can't find any record of either Short or Miles having played this game.
Aug-08-07  sneaky pete: Black is Richard Miles (who may be the same as R Miles).

Nigel: "This is one of my favourite games, played in the Greater Manchester qualifying section of the British Championship. Winning it virtually made sure of my going through to the zonal tournament."

Nov-26-07  DaveyL: Black never even moved his queen or queen's rook. What a disaster. Great queen sac by the young Nigel.
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: Through 11.0-0-0, I played this line twice in tournament games, winning crushingly each time. As Dres1 said, rather than taking the queen, 6...Nd7! is the move; 6...Ng4!? 7.e6 Nxd4 8.Qxg4 Nxc2+ is also playable. Nonetheless, the last I heard, taking the queen is also playable if Black plays 11...Be6! 12.Bex6 fxe6.
Mar-04-08  RandomVisitor: White might try to improve with 9.Bxe2.
Apr-20-09  WhiteRook48: 7 exf6!!!
Feb-01-10  pskogli: I did a guess the move on this game, scored par with blitz timelimit. Why is good GM games so easy to follow?
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