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Eugene Znosko-Borovsky vs Jakob Adolf Seitz
"Dream of Me Two Knight" (game of the day Jul-15-2011)
Nice (1931), Nice FRA, rd 7, Mar-17
Formation: King's Indian Attack (A07)  ·  0-1



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find similar games 2 more Znosko-Borovsky/J A Seitz games
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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  piltdown man: Sporting of ZB to allow the mate.
Jul-15-11  JohnBoy: notable only for the mate
Premium Chessgames Member
  profK: Just love it !!! Every beginner should learn the point that the stalemates are avoided if he/she has a move !!!
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Welcome to the TWO KNIGHT show!!

The winner needs to chase the king to the corner and trap him there (with one knight). Then he needs to release the pawn and mate with the other knight.

In the confines of the fifty move rule or anvancement of the pawn,a win may be impossible in many cases.

Jul-15-11  horseboat: The ol' Troitzky position rears its ugly head, eh? The pawn can be blockaded easily and only allowed to move when it helps Black by preventing stalemate. As long as the pawn is blockaded on or before before the line a4-b3-c4-d4-e4-f4-g3-h4, Black can convert for a win without a draw by fifty-move rule. Well done by Seitz to recognize this.
Jul-15-11  DrMAL: "Nice" to see a two-knights mate, just sayin LOL.
Jul-15-11  goodevans: <kevin86: It almost looked like white gave up the bishop because he thought that two knights couldn't win vs a pawn.>

62 ♗xf5+ was the big mistake.

If white keeps the ♗ (for now) then how is black to make progress? If black takes white's last ♙ then white can give up his ♗ for the black ♙ and a draw. What plan would black have that doesn't involve taking the ♙?

Jul-15-11  lemaire90: In the last moments of the game, it was a good decision by Black to not take the last pawn to avoid any stalemates !
Jul-15-11  goodevans: Let me answer my own question.

After <62 Be8 Nxf4> black would have a plan. It goes like this ...

1. Use the ♘s to ensure that white can only defend the ♙s advance from behind (from black's perspective), e.g. from c6 or b5 rather than, say, b2.

2. Use the ♘s to block the ♗s defence of the advance square. White cannot swap ♗ for ♘, he can only swap ♗ for ♙ to get a draw.

I don't think this plan will work, but at least it's a plan!

Jul-15-11  nolanryan: i think i finally got a friday pun. it is because she has two knights at the end.
Premium Chessgames Member
  fm avari viraf: Didactic end game technique with those galloping Knights!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: I'll chime in that it was very cool to see the precise (enough) mate with two knights against king and pawn.
Jul-16-11  goodevans: The position after <62 Be8 Nxf4> has been troubling me, so I plugged it into Crafty EGT and gave it a go ...

Playing white, I went down a couple of blind alleys and got mated before finding a line that drew.

It's a tough challenge, but I'm now convinced that after 62 Be8 white can hold the draw.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Peligroso Patzer: FWIW, I just checked this ending with a tablebase and discovered the following.

If the position arising when material was first reduced to K + P vs. K vs. 2N (after <62. … Nxf5>), as follows:

click for larger view

… which is a win (for Black, of course) in 32 (with White on move, as in the game) is altered by sliding the White pawn to the h-file (still on the 4th rank), it becomes a win in 89 (for Black); and if the pawn is hypothetically placed on a4, it becomes a theoretical draw (if White starts with a4-a5; all other choices lose in 91).

Among other things, this highlights the point that 2N vs. P is not always winnable, even with the P only as far advanced as the 4th rank).

Jun-08-12  reisanibal: reply to mrbiggs' tidbit:

Not necessarily accurate play. Black makes some moves that postpones the checkgame and then white makes some moves that shortens. Checkmate seems to ensue nearly in time but that's because of inaccuracies by both sides.

May-11-14  kereru: Znosko-Borovsky probably thought the position was drawn after Bxf5+. Apparently this is the first game on record where someone actually won the N+N vs P ending.
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: <cormier>

Znosko-Borovsky would be a clear piece up after 26. ♖xd7. At least Seitz gets a pawn for the piece with 25...♘xc2.

Jul-22-19  doash: How is the White King forced into the corner if he heads towards the a8-d5 quadrant of the board? Giddins says there is a win but he doesn't show it and I don't see how it's done.
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <doash> Feed a position with no more than six pieces (including the kings) into the Nalimov tablebases and they'll tell you the result with best play and the winning/drawing moves:
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <doash> An f-pawn on the fourth rank blockaded by a knight (as here) is a win for the side with the two knights, as Troitsky showed.
Premium Chessgames Member
  OBIT: There are seven piece tablebases now. It turns out that, while 62. Bxf5 loses, so does every other move by White in this position. In fact, Black has a winning position after 57...Nxb4 (when the game reduces to seven pieces) and never loses his winning advantage for the rest of the game
Premium Chessgames Member
  OBIT: I would add that this game, having been played in 1931, probably went through at least two adjournments, giving Seitz a couple of nights to study the intricacies of this endgame. Now that chess engines have made adjournments a thing of the past, today's player would have to figure out the endgame in one session, most likely without much time on his clock.
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: Well-played ending by Seitz - stronger players than him have only drawn with N+N v P.
Feb-14-22  Marcelo Bruno: The endgame was included in Orfeu Gilberto D'Agostini's "Xadrez Básico" (Basic Chess). This endgame is a true masterpiece.
Jan-15-23  generror: The endgame is truly an arcane dance of kings and knights!
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