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Alexander Onischuk vs Giovanni Portilho Vescovi
3rd Karpov It (2002), Poikovsky RUS, rd 5, Apr-20
Nimzo-Indian Defense: Normal Variation. Bernstein Defense Except Gligoric System (E53)  ·  1-0



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Given 7 times; par: 24 [what's this?]

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sac: 16.Bxh6 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Apr-26-07  zb2cr: Rats, I went with 23. Qg3+. Oh well.
Apr-26-07  JG27Pyth: Thanks Random Visitor for the Rybka Analysis

2. (6.16): 22.Rxe6 Rg8 23.Nf5+ Kf8 24.Qa3+ Nc5 25.dxc5 Rxg2+ 26.Kf1 Rxf2+ 27.Kxf2 Qf4+ 28.Ke2 Ba6+

Okay. I didn't get the puzzle -- I figured there must be a mate and couldn't find, but it turns out: there isn't a mate! I must appeal to the jury that I _did_ find Black's best line of defense in the so-called puzzle solution line... that is, I found: <22.Rxe6 Rg8> After which the whole business became so murky I gave up on that line.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: I missed this one. I tried 22 ♖g3+ ♔h8 23 ♘xf7+ ♖xf7 24 ♕g6-but there,I think,the attack runs out of steam.
Apr-26-07  MostlyAverageJoe: <YouRang: I think the line I saw, 22. Rg3 was more straightforward. It pretty much forces the king back to h8>

No, it does not. Read my first analysis. Kh8 fails miserably. Ng4 is much better.

Apr-26-07  newton296: what can black do after white's 22)re1 -e3 threatning rg3 ? I saw this simple line and thought white has to be winning.
Apr-26-07  newton296: anyone comment on 22) Re1 -e3 plan
Premium Chessgames Member
  playground player: Pardon me if I'm repeating what someone else has already said: but if we play Rg3+ before Rxe6, then Black plays Ng4, we play Rxg4, and then the Black King moves to f6 and probably escapes checkmate.
Apr-26-07  newton296: playground player ! check line 1 randomvisitor above, appears white escapes mate but I say rg3+ first is more solid OTB move. so count it a solve. there are many plans to win in this kinda position which makes it tricky for me .
Apr-26-07  YouRang: <MostlyAverageJoe: <YouRang: I think the line I saw, 22. Rg3 was more straightforward. It pretty much forces the king back to h8> No, it does not. Read my first analysis. Kh8 fails miserably. Ng4 is much better.>

Hi <MostlyAverageJoe>. Yes, Ng4 may be better, but that would be one of the lines that I referred to in my earlier post when I said: <There may be other lines that stave off mate, but I think black must jettison material to do so.>

Admittedly, I didn't give 22...Ng4 much consideration, but even looking at it now, it looks dead lost for black after 23. Rxg4+. White not only has a material advantage, but all that material is poised to overwhelm black's badly exposed king.

So, if black HAD calculated that 22...Ng4 was better than 22...Kh8, he would just resign on the spot, IMO.

Apr-26-07  tbentley: 22. Ree3?! Qxd6 23. Reg3+ Ng4 24. Rxg4+ Kf6 25. Rxh6+ Ke7 or 24. Rxh6 Rc8 25. Rxg4+ Kf8 isn't nearly as decisive as Rg3+ or Rxe6; Crafty gives white only about a 1.5 pawn advantage.
Premium Chessgames Member
  fm avari viraf: White's most logical move is Rxe6 so if Black grabs it then he gets the g6 square & will be through to his combo. The analysis by Rebka < posted by RandomVisitor > gives us more relevant ideas where White has the advantage.
Apr-26-07  ruzon: Isn't 13. ... Qe8 a blunder? 14. Bxe6 seems to win at least a pawn, and at most a Queen and 2 pawns for Bishop and Rook. Am I missing something?
Apr-26-07  slowcrawl: i dun get why everyone posts with capitalized letters and punctuation. and they repeat what everyone else says like

"26...Qxe3 is a very good move because..." when someone just above posted the same thing. can someone explain please

Apr-26-07  Sasquatch777: To answer the comment from slowcrawl, some of us are proficient in the use of punctuation, capitalization, and spelling, and prefer to write that way. (dun is a red horse)
Apr-26-07  Xiddok: I didn't find all the lines, but I did find Rg3+ and it looked solid from what I saw.

I probably shouldn't say I got this, but I did much better than most Thursdays. Often these require an awareness for certain tactics, and they often go completely over my head, where as it seemed this Thursday's difficulty lies more in the calculations. All of this helped by the fact that there were apparently several good lines.

Apr-26-07  simsan: I'll give myself a little, but not full credit on today's puzzle. My main line was:
22.Rxe6 fxe6 23.Rg3+ Kh8 24.Qg6 with mate to follow on either g7 or h6 with the queen or on f7 with the knight.

I briefly concidered 23.Ng4, but didn't see how it created a flight square for the king.

I considered the crazy black responses
22. .. Be4 23.Rg3 Kh8 24. Qxe4! Nxe4 25.Rxh6#
22. .. Ne4 23.Nf5+ Kg8 24.Rexh6 and concluded it would be mating.

I did NOT consider any of the possible rook moves along the 8th rank that black may opt for as a response to 22.Rxe6 (didn't see the strength of them), and - as in important consequence - did NOT see that the immediate 22. Rg3+ was in fact stronger than the move played in the game..

Thus .. half credit.

Apr-26-07  openningspecialist: < ruzon: Isn't 13. ... Qe8 a blunder? 14. Bxe6 seems to win at least a pawn, and at most a Queen and 2 pawns for Bishop and Rook. Am I missing something? > it is in fact the best move. The best continueation after Qe8 was played until h6 which is losing easily. Qd8 was actually better! Bxe6 losing i think. Do you have a combination after Rxc3 bxc3 Bxf3?. This is looking really bad for white. Your Bishop is pinned to you rook and I have a peice in hand unless gxf3? Kh8 and im happy to play down a pawn in this position.. in fact i wouldnt mind 2 pawns assuming it doesn't affect the activity of my peices.

Some openning-middlegame analysis by openningspecialist: 9. b6 was the first bad move by black giving white an advantage. 9. ... Nc6 was better. But black played 10. Bg5 instead of 10. Qb3 or a3 which is much better. 10. ... Bb7 is the right move but then 11. Re1 was imperfect. 11. Qe2 was better. After Re1 it is completely level. 11. ... Nbd7 was good. 12. Rc1... maybe Qb3 slightly better. 12. ... Rc8 good move but 13. Qb3 was strong. Bxc3, bad move white has control now. Fully developed and in an aggresive position. Black has to play almost perfectly to get the draw if he's lucky after Rxc3.

Apr-26-07  openningspecialist: If instead of bxc3 above Bxf7+ Qxf7 and b or Q x c3 looking bad after Bd5 threat or just Qxa2. you only have a pawn for your lost piece or above up a pawn for a hopeless position.
Apr-26-07  MostlyAverageJoe: <juan31: What about Re1e3><newton296: anyone comment on 22) Re1-e3 plan>

It leads nowhere. HIARCS 11.1 analysis gives it +0.33 (17-ply), with these possible first moves:

22... Qxd6 23. Reg3 Ng4 24. Rxh6 Rg8 25. Rxg4 Kf8 26. Rxg8 Kxg8 27. Rh3 Kf8

<tbentley> How deep did you analyze Re3 with Crafty so that 22.Re3 evaluated it at +1.5 pawns?

<YouRang> OK, I understand your reasoning. I could even strengthen your comment that black would just resign on the spot; he could've done it after 19.Qg3+ (the +5 advantage shown in that position is plenty for master-level players to win handily).

I re-run the comparison of the moves we disagreed about, and here are the results with initial moves:

HIARCS 16-ply analysis after 22.Rg3 Kh8: (+12.03) 23. Rxe6 Qxd6 24. Rxd6 Rg8 25. Rxg8

HIARCS 16-ply analysis after 22.Rg3 Ng4: (+11.19) 23. Rxg4 Kf6 24. Nxf7 Kxf7 25. Qg6

Therefore, I withdraw my earlier comment. It seems that after either move, the black is trounced about equally. Ng4 also is much more complicated to analyze.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: I found this combination (Rxe6!) but overlooked the defence of Ng4. But once I saw that I found Qh7.

Otherwise I found the winning methods.

This was hard as there seemed to be so many possiblities. So after looking at Rxe6 as one of my first moves, I looked at about 5 other possibilities, then I spotted the Rxe6 idea.

Very interesting attack by White.

Apr-27-07  tbentley: <MostlyAverageJoe>I must have set up the position wrong; now it gives black a 0.02 advantage at 14 ply.
Jan-24-15  sharpnova: @MostlyAverageJoe

What are you talking about?

Are you saying Bxh6 is established theory? It was a brilliant sacrifice that put Onischuk on my radar.

Incidentally it's also a move that was very hard for engines to find until recently.

I don't know what database you're using that lists that move as standard opening theory but... I do know one thing: it doesn't exist and you're simply wrong.

Jan-24-15  sharpnova: <MostlyAverageJoe>

15..h6 was the mistake. It was not part of opening theory and isn't in any database other than being listed for the two games in which it was played, mistakenly. Once by Vescovi, who was punished by Oniscuk's brilliant, correct, and winning reply. And once by Ramesh who deserved a draw since his opponent, Zvjaginsev failed to find the correct response.

Feb-23-15  MostlyAverageJoe: <sharpnova ... what database you're using>

Which part of <the one that came with HIARCS> you did not understand?

Congratulations. You found a bug in ancient software.

Or maybe I made a mistake.


Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: 9..b6 is the main line of the Karpov variation. In game 10 of the 2000 Championship match Kasparov played 13..Be7 and lost quickly; Vescovi chose the more popular 13..Bxc3. Normally Black plays 14..h6 first and then ..Qe8; by playing 14..Qe8?! first and then 15..h6? he allowed the decisive 16 Bxh6!. 17..Ng4 18 Qg3..Ndf6 19 Rxh6..Kg7 20 Rxf6..Kxf6 21 Qh4+ would also have won for White.
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