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Boris Spassky vs Mark Taimanov
USSR Championship (1955), Moscow URS, rd 16, Mar-09
Spanish Game: Morphy Defense. Norwegian Variation (C70)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Apr-09-02  refutor: Early Spassky games are always fun to go over, but this game really impressed me. After 14. ...g5 at first glance the threat of Qh5+ lingers, but the combination starting with Nxb5 was stunning. When I played it over again, it was all very logical but I can imagine that it would be terribly difficult to find that over the board :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Doctor Who: The Nxb5 line is amazing. After White claims the prize with Qxf7, the material count is still massively in favor of Black. White wins the queen, but sacrificed a two knights and a rook to get it! But with Black undeveloped, the powerful White Queen plunders the Black camp and gobbles every pawn in site.
Apr-09-02  bishop: I think that Taimanov saw 15.Nxb5! thought that it was okay for him and went ahead and provoked that move.Only later on did he notice that his three pieces would not be able to cope with the enemy queen.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: Exactly! The amateur is obsessed with the attacking power of the queen while the stronger player appreciates that minor pieces can compensate for its absense. But the GM also recognizes when it's proper to once again become obsessed with her power!
Jun-02-09  WhiteRook48: my, my, my
Apr-13-11  LIFE Master AJ: A really fantastic game by Boris Spassky!!!

I thought I had seen this game before ... I had.

Its in the book: "The Best Games of Boris Spassy," (hardback / descriptive notation) by Andrew Soltis. (Game # 6, page # 21. Copyright 1973.) I have gone over every game in that book - many times.

I mailed this book to a USCF officer a number of years ago - and he got Boris to sign it (when he was in the U.S.) and mailed it back to me.

Apr-13-11  LIFE Master AJ: Soltis gives White's last move as 39.QxKB (39.Qxe5) and then Black resigned.
Apr-13-11  LIFE Master AJ: Usually - if you were going to quit - you did it just before the time control. (Move 40) Otherwise, the game would be adjourned and continued another day.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Usually - if you were going to quit - you did it just before the time control. (Move 40) Otherwise, the game would be adjourned and continued another day.>

Karpov's philosophy was rather different-he was noted to have a pathological hatred of resignation in the normal fashion, so would play on through the session, those times he actually lost, which for a long while, weren't very often.

There was another GM who indulged in this, so his name wouldn't have to appear in the next day's sports scores with a nought against his name; J'adoubovic comes to mind, but I'm not sure it was he.

Apr-13-12  Eduardo Bermudez: "The Art of chess involves exploring possibilities bearing game to a position in which the conventional values ​​of the pieces stop rule". M. M. Botvinnik
Feb-19-15  hedgeh0g: 15.Nxb5!! is a bolt from the blue!

Spassky correctly judged that his opponent's discoordinated pieces and weak pawns would be no match for the queen.

May-27-15  ToTheDeath: Great game, a joy to play over.
Mar-20-17  Saniyat24: Rook for a Queen...! Spassky's games have an old worldly beauty that is very uncommon...
May-14-17  edubueno: Lo pasó por encima.
May-12-18  Eisenheim: This should be a gotd. Move 15 could be the puzzle day but too abstract for the win after but definitely an advantage
Aug-10-18  wtpy: Agree this would be good gotd.
Apr-25-20  Fanques Fair: Spassky is the most under-rated world champion ! Even in Kasparov's series he dedicates few space to Boris's carreer , which is strange, since he was a candidate in 56 and beat the tounament winner Smyslov .

Some of his early games are masterpieces, like this one. The combination is not only difficult to see, it´s also counterintuitive, like a flash in a blue sky .

Apr-25-20  ewan14: Is Kasparov's series OMGP ?
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: It is, yes.
Apr-26-20  paulthebox: Great game which I had not seen before. After losing the queen, black has enough material but he must shed some pawns because if 22...♗g7 23. ♕a6 ♗c6 24. ♗g5 ♗e8 (or 24... ♗d7 25. ♕a8+ ♗c8 26. ♕d5+) 25. ♕e6 wins a piece.
May-21-20  Allanur: As usual, King Boris X playing preposterous chess. No need to think about how complex the line might have been, here is the point:

Usually/traditionally/generally players sacrifice queen to capture 2-3 pieces but here King Boris X sacrificed 2 minor pieces and a rook in order to capture the queen. At the end of the trade, the opponent maintained the bishop pair and in contrast to the queen had a horse, bishop and a rook. All of these took place with-in the first 19 moves.

Not to mention that the 38th, final, move of the King was hilariously preposterous.

King Boris X was probably the most talented player among the known ones, not Morphy or Reshevsky

May-21-20  ewan14: Brilliant Boris
May-21-20  ewan14: I am still surprised that in OMGP Kasparov does not feature a game from the 1968 Candidates final with Korchnoi

Surely this was Boris reaching his zenith as the '' universal '' player , tbc v. Petrosian

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