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Evgeny Bareev vs Gennadij Timoscenko
Novosibirsk tt (1986)
Nimzo-Indian Defense: Reshevsky Variation (E46)  ·  1-0



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sac: 31.Bxg7 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
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May-15-07  Fourpointo: <dzechiel: Can't white improve with 35 Qxg7#?>

Oops. You're right.

May-15-07  micartouse: I missed the key move that holds it all together: 31. Bxg7 Bxg7 32. f6 Qf8 33. Re8! It's sad because I've seen this motif before here at CG and solved it. So it means I forget simple tactics. :(
May-15-07  Ashram64: the puzzle is really simple concept except there are so many layers of distractions that could be confusing. Saw the attack right away, but need to workout all the details make sure it's not a paper tiger move.
May-15-07  TrueBlue: Rxe8 also works. Thanks!
May-15-07  Kleve: Lovely puzzle. The line I was going with was so full of holes I won't even post it! Embarrassing... I got the basic concepts (back rank, pin the bishop) but failed utterly in the tactical execution.

Can't wait for Sunday!

May-15-07  newton296: pretty puzzle! can be won with rxe8...qxe8 Bxg7 Bxg7 ...f6! threatning mate at g7. but the dark squares as bareev shows are already weak enough thx to the bank rank mates so white doesnt need to soften up f6 with a r trade first! as I wrongly thought! I mised that black can't play 32)...qxf6 to defend the mate at g7 due to white's mate after rxe8. lately i'm glad to find a win only to be disappointed to see the game and find a prettier one !
May-15-07  newton296: guess you cant have it all!
May-15-07  alshatranji: Rxe8 doesn't work. After 31..Qxe8, 32.Bxg7 Bxg7, 33.f6 Qf1.
May-15-07  alshatranji: Sorry I mean 33.f6 Qf8
May-15-07  kevin86: A very unusual puzzle. If it had been Sunday,I would have expected an attack along the queen file-but since it is Tuesday,I looked for something easier.

The key is the black queen.She must guard the rook and the f6 square. When white's pawn makes a beachhead at f6-the queen cannot abandon the rook to capture. She tries a spite check,but after it,black is faced with two mates-one can be stopped,but not both.

May-15-07  kevin86: Note the final position: with a few changes,black could have a smothered mate.If white's queen were forward two squares an a pawn added at g2-you have a Philador's Legacy. Move the queen forward one square and black can win the queen OR mate in the same manner as above.
May-15-07  MostlyAverageJoe: <mkrk17: I see Bxg7 Bxg7, f6 Qxf6, Rxe8 # Can someone tell me whats wrong with this.. ?>

The very second move, Bxg7 accepting the bishop sacrifice, is a big blunder by the black. The solution should not rely on the opponent allowing a forced mate by the very first responding move.

I wish CG would let add large font/boldface to comment, but I'll just have to yell - my apologies about it, particualrly to PositionalTactician :-)


31.Bxg7+ Bxg7


It is just a part of the solution. The proper defense by black starts with: 31. ... f6.

<Marco65: <MostlyAverageJoe> <with the interesting fork if 33.Qxh4> I can't see any of your posted line with that...>

This occurs in the line in response to a proposal to start the puzzle one move earlier. If the puzzle was to start with the postion after 29 moves, then the game move, 30.exd6 is still good, but complicated by this line:

30. ... Rxe1+ 31. Rxe1 Nxe1 32. dxc7 Qh4

Now, if white took the queen: 33.Qxh4, you'd get this position:

click for larger view

and black can fork the king and queen with 33 ... Nf3. After the queen is take, both sides are left with a knight and two bishops. White still wins, though, since black must concentrate on the passed pawns and will have to lose material.

Up to 33.Qxh3 (surprisingly, this is not the best move, but only a deeper analysis reveals that the queen sac should be declined) he above is about the strongest play by both sides, and way more complex than Tue puzzle should be (which was the entire point I was trying to make in response to the suggestion to start the puzzle ealier).

May-15-07  newton296: Alshanti , yes qf8 stops the mate but white follows ...Qf8 with Bxd7... Bxd7 winning the exhcange and then rd2 followed by rg2 and black soon loses the g7 bishop also! white is up 4.5 pawns and wins easy! just not as easy !
May-15-07  YouRang: Got it, but it took a minute. There are a couple of key tactical points that one must put together:

1. The mate threat at g7 by queen, supported by bishop or pawn (after f6) -- prevented by only the bishop at f8, but might be defended with ...g6.

2. The black rook on e8 is under attack -- guarded only by the queen.

So, first we play 31. Bxg7!, which dislodges the black bishop from the back rank and takes away the ...g6 defense. This also threatens mate (32. Bf6#), so black must take the bishop (swapping rooks 31...Rxe1+ 32. Rxe1 doesn't really help).

After 31...Bxb7, then 32...f6! threatening mate (33. Qxg7#), and black's only defense seems to be 32...Qxf6, but this leaves Re8 unguarded, allowing the back-rank mate.

I didn't actually consider 32...Qb6+. I should have looked at it, but it turns out to be only a meaningless delay. I also didn't consider 31...f6, which admittedly allows black a slower death.

May-15-07  MostlyAverageJoe: <alshatranji: Rxe8 doesn't work. After 31..Qxe8, 32.Bxg7 Bxg7, 33.f6 Qf8>

Yes it does work. The analysis of your line has been done in my first post. 34. Bxd7 Bxd7 35. Rd2, with the g7 bishop to die soon thereafter.

May-15-07  newton296: rxe8 first is not as good but i'm sticking to my guns that it leaves white winning after rxe8...qxe8 Bxg7...Bxg7 f6... Qf8 Bxd7...Bxd7 Rd2 followed by Rg2 and the pinned bishop at g7 is toast!
May-15-07  alshatranji: All right guys I see your point. White gets a winning position. But rxe8 is much slower.
May-15-07  Justawoodpusher: Got the the first move and after checking a while I thought I would have found all possible defenses. Wrong again!

I missed the 31...f6 as pointed out by <MostlyAverageJoe>!

This happens to me too often not only in puzzles but also in real games.

Premium Chessgames Member
  playground player: Glad I wasn't the only one to go for Rxe8 -although now that I've seen the solution, my original inclination to go for Bxg7 looks like a better choice for an easier win.
May-15-07  Marmot PFL: Nice combination using the g file, back row and long diagonal. A little trickier than the usual Tuesday as white has other moves to look at besides Bxg7. Looked first at f6, then liked Rxe8 before noticing Qf8 but switching the move order rules that out.
May-15-07  patzer2: One amusing possibility is <31. Bxg7 Bxg7 32. f6> 32...Rxe1 33. Rxe1 Qf1 34. Re8! with a decisive double pin.
May-15-07  psmith: My solution was the prosaic 31. Rxe8 Qxe8 32. Bxg7 which also wins. (As I see others have also noted.)
Premium Chessgames Member
  fm avari viraf: Chess sans tactics would be four Ds- Dull, Drab, Dreary & Dry, it's only tactics that make Chess so lively & thrilling. Here, Bareev lands a tactical blow 31.Bxg7 to exploit the Back Rank weakness in an absolutely delightful combination.
May-17-07  Counterpoint: <MostlyAverageJoe:>


32.Bxf6 Rg7 33.Bxg7 Bxg7 34.Rxe8+ Qxe8 35.f6! Qf8 (or Qg6) 36.Bxc8 and black is in a lot of trouble...

May-17-07  MostlyAverageJoe: <Counterpoint: <MostlyAverageJoe:> 31...f6!?

32.Bxf6 Rg7 33.Bxg7 Bxg7 34.Rxe8+ Qxe8 35.f6! Qf8 (or Qg6) 36.Bxc8 and black is in a lot of trouble...>

Of course he is. But 31 ... Bxg7? results in a forced mate in 7 (see my very first kibitz to this game, line ending in 38. Qxg7#).

In your line, black it still quite far away from getting mated.

Anyhow, my entire point is that the game included a bad response to the first move by white, and that the best black response requires much more analysis than one would expect to do on Tuesday.

BTW, CG said <it's very easy to win that position as White regardless of Black's defense>. So, I looked deeper into the 31...f6 line.

32.Bxf6 is the only strong move in the line above, but Rxe8 merits some attention before discarding it.

33.Bxg7 not so obvious. Exchanging queens after 33.Bxd8 needs to be analyzed. 33.Qxg7needs to be analyzed. Only the first one is really strong.

At move 34, I agree with CG - most any reasonable continuation wins. Two best ones are 34.f6 and 34.Rxe8+. Assume Rxe8.

At move 35, again I agree with CG. 35.f5 is best. Other good ones: Rd2, Rxd3, d7. Now black is obviously losing.

Now, let's look at the other defenses after 31.Bxg7:

31 ... Rxe1 32.Rxe1 - OK, this one is definitely bad for the black (but needs similar analysis as above after 32 ... f6).

31 ... Qh4 - desperate. Obviously loses.

31 ... Nxf4 - ditto. Loses queen after discovered check.

Finally, the forced mate line as played in the game after 31 ... Bxg7.

32. f6 is best and rather obvious (Rxe8 also wins).

33. Kh1 is best (mate in 6). Kg2 and Kf1 also win. No other reasonable moves. The rest is easy.

So, there are a couple places where reasonably-looking moves need to be analyzed deeper. About 7 branches, 2-3 moves deep at the branch point, requiring further 2-3 move analysis.

Kinda overdone for Tuesday, I still think, but won't argue with those who disagree.

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