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Mikhail Tal vs Bent Larsen
Tal - Larsen Candidates Semifinal (1965), Bled YUG, rd 2, Jul-24
Spanish Game: Berlin Defense. Closed Wolf Variation (C66)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-29-05  calman543: Why didn't black play 35. ... Ng6 ?
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: <calman543> 35 ... Ng6 36. Qe6+ gets Queens off and White wins anyway. The text was desperation, hoping for some perpetual check, but notice 37 ... Qg3+ 38. Rg2 Qxf3 39. Qd5+ or 38 ... Qxh4 39. Qd5+ Kh8 40. Qf7! wins.
Oct-14-05  Averageguy:, why does 27...e2 have a check symbol?
Oct-19-05  Poisonpawns: Excellent play from Tal against the black knight on the c5 square.This one misplaced piece is all Tal needed to control the flow of the game by threatening to trap it (moves 23-29)and forcing concessions from black to cost him the game.
Feb-20-09  Dredge Rivers: The Berlin is an interesting choice for Larsen. It doesn't seem to suit his agressive style.
Nov-05-13  Poulsen: Badly played by Larsen. Already by move 15 - moving the knight to a square with no future - it's clear that black has huge problems with his cramped position.

Larsen generally opted for dynamic play - as did his opponent off course.

Jul-03-18  edubueno: Jugando 15...Axc3!; 16 Dxc3 - Tc8 la posición se iguala, como demostró Lasker vs Capablanca en Nueva York 1924
Jul-04-18  Poulsen: <edubueno> I find it unlikely, that Larsen did not know about Lasker vs Capablanca, 1924. Generally he had great knowledge about the games of the old masters - even the less spectacular ones. Perhaps he wanted to improve Capablanca's play by not trading the darksquared bishop - not fully realizing that in doing so his pieces would be struggling to find suitable squares from where they would be able to exert sufficient influence on the board.

A key move towards the win for Tal was 18.a5! - a move Capablanca could prevent, since whites knight was gone.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Troller: In his comments on the game back in 1965 Larsen wrote after 14..Re8: <In a couple of games between Lasker and Capablanca in similar positions they traded on c3. The black position is solid and it cannot be proven that the bishop is stronger than the knight. I choose another plan which also leads to equal play. I think it can be stated as fact that the space advantage enjoyed by White does not matter much when a couple of minor pieces have been traded.>

He criticized 21..Rae8 (..Nf6=) and 22..f5 as being too opmtimistic, wanting to play for a win. But only 25..e3 sealed Black's fate completely, according to Larsen. 25..Re5! 26.b4 exf3 and Black has active play, he claims.

Indeed the game is equal at move 21, but the 25..Re5 line is at the edge of being lost anyway. Of course, ..e3? is worse and leads to a rather clear win.

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