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Vladimir Sokolov vs Rusnikov
"The Check's In the Mail" (game of the day Jul-18-2010)
corr (1966) (correspondence), URS
Italian Game: Scotch Gambit. Nakhmanson Gambit (C56)  ·  1-0



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Given 19 times; par: 19 [what's this?]

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Oct-29-09  The Chess Express: I guess black could have tried <12...b1=Q>

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A quick Fritz line gives

13. Re1xb1 h7-h6
14. Bg5xe7 Nc6xe7
15. Qd5-h5+ Ke8-f8
16. Re4-f4+ Ne7-f5
17. Rf4xf5+ Bc8xf5
18. Qh5xf5+ Qd8-f6
19. Qf5xf6+ g7xf6
20. Rb1xb7 Rh8-h7

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I think black should win this.

Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: The position after 19...h6 is in a book of combinations created by Miles and Teschner lo these many years ago. It's nice to see the whole game.
Jul-18-10  Bridgeburner: <The Chess Express>

That's a strange line by Fritz. <13. Rxb1 h6> should be drawn as after <14. Bxe7 Nxe7>, either <15. Rbe1> or <15. Nh4> enable a perpetual check by White. <15. Qh5+> is defensible but <16. Rf5+> is a fatal mistake.

<13...Kf8> is another try by Black but this too should be drawn after <14. Rbe1 Bf6 15. Rf4 Ne7 16. Rxf6+ gxf6 17. Bh6+ Ke8 18. Qh5+ Kd7 19. Qh3+ Ke8 (<<19...Kc6 and White mates in 8>>, while <<19...f5>> is risky) 20. Qh5+>.

Premium Chessgames Member
  scormus: Amazing, if flawed game. Unbelievable finish. At 19 W to play W has 3 pieces en pris and B threatens b1=Q+. One of those positions someone used to set up at a fairground and challenge people to say who was winning.

I stopped playing through and decided to find the win - make it an ersatz Sunday puzzle. I couldn't. Nearest I came was when I noticed it would be # in 1 if B's b-pawn wasn't there.

It seems strange that B didnt play 19 ... Rf6 and fight on. OTB the Arab # might be missed, but in a correspondance game .... unless it was rapid play correspondance ;-)

BTW I'd vote brilliancy prize for the pin?

Premium Chessgames Member
  scormus: I mean ... for the pun ..... I think :-\
Jul-18-10  zanshin: I wonder why Black chose to sac his Queen with <17...Qxe7>

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Jul-18-10  tivrfoa: I think 18. ... Kg6 would be better, but I think black didn't expect 19. Qg5!
Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: And black certainly didn't expect 20.Rxb7+ given that white's queen was en prise.
Jul-18-10  David2009: <scormus: Amazing, if flawed game. Unbelievable finish.> I agree

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<[snip] It seems strange that B didnt play 19 ... Rf6 and fight on> Perhaps he wanted to save the postage fearing 20...Rf6 21.Qxg7 Bxb7 22.Qxf6+ Kc8 23.Qe6+ Kc7 24.Qf7+! Kc8 25.Qb3 cxd4 26.Qxb2 Kc7 27.Qxd4 Re8 28.f4

Crafty link to the diagram position (White to play): I lost first time round playing 24. Qb3 instead of Qf7+. Try it yourselves and see what happens!

Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Underneath u wonder if black knights couldnt king clandestine additional resource 16..Nf5 infaust Kc7? The Scotch gambit makes headweigh (sic) after queen whisk rook it vindicates pace off. Is there a single grain of sounness for white's play? Signed sealed delivered leggy sac out on a limb. Caned Rus, still Piano, Fried Attack I stick with.
Jul-18-10  randomsac: Exciting game and a cool pun.
Jul-18-10  apexin: Wow, this is a great game.
Somehow i havent seen it before, maybe because its correspondce game..
Jul-19-10  Zkid: 20...Rf6 fails quickly to 21. Nc6+ Ke8 22. Re7+ Kf8 23. Qxg7#. 19... Rf6 looks trickier, but after 20. Re1 cxd4 21. Qxg7 (21... Re6 22. Rb1), or Qb5 to take care of the b2 pawn white should be winning, although I see nothing immediate. Black's king is stuck in the center and he'll be lucky to only lose his two extra pawns while trying to develop his pieces.
Jul-19-10  kevin86: With an Arabian mate to follow if the queen is taken...
Oct-27-10  sevenseaman: Or an Arabianesque mate, with R as good as a corner.
Dec-31-10  sneaky pete: As <zanshin> hints, 17... Qxe7 was a mistake. Pálkövi claims that 17... Kb8! refutes the attack (18... Qxe7 is threatened), giving the continuation 18.Qxg7 cxd4 "and black is a clear piece up". However, after 17... Kb8 18.Nc6+ bxc6 19.Qxg7 ..

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it's not clear if or how black's extra piece will be of any use.

Nov-06-11  KingsGambit73: Indeed there is a flaw in Fritz analysis, but as we know by now Fritz is pretty weak computer.

Computer gives instantly.

13. Rxb1 h6
14. Bxe7 Nxe7
15. Nh4! with big advantage for white.

Jul-11-12  zev22407: What is wrong with 8...K-f6?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: This game is so good it's on here twice!

V Sokolov vs Rusnikov, 1966

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A classic position. Every White piece is hanging. Even the White King is threatened with mate.

The finish in the final position after 20. Rxb7+

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is 20...hxg5 21.Nc6+ Ke8 22.Re7 mate.

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This game appears in Estrin's blue book on The Two Knights but not in the Batsford update of the same book.

(maybe the page fell out of the update and landed here.)


Mar-16-15  Immortal Gambit: Can someone explain how 3 descendants of the Sokolov family all played Rushnikov or Rusnikov in almost the exact same game? Or maybe only one of these was truly played:

Vladimir Sokolov vs Rusnikov
Ewgeni Sokolov vs Rushnikov
Sokolov vs Rushnikov

Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: Ended up here by playing through the Scotch Gambit and trying to figure out why 6..dxc3 is a bad idea. It's obvious once you see White's attack.
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: So who is Nakhmanson, the inventor of the 6.Nc3 gambit? Could not find him in the database.

Incidentally, 6...Nxc3 seems to refute as in W Heidenfeld vs Myagmarsuren, 1966

Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: Here's a White win after 6...Nxc3 and a mention of Nakhmanson:

R Lahaye vs R Hendriks, 2000

I haven't found anything about who Nakhmanson is. Chess365 doesn't have any games either.

Jul-17-17  ColeTrane: We like whites sixth move
Mar-29-22  Mathematicar: In my opinion, 19... Qg5 is not easy to find compared with the final 19... Rxb7.
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