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John Alan Grefe vs Walter Shawn Browne
"Good Grefe, Walter Browne" (game of the day May-22-2009)
US Championship (1973), El Paso, TX USA, rd 7, Sep-17
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf. Browne Variation (B98)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Apr-08-05  bronx27: Very nice how Grefe uses "Momentum" to gain time against Browne.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Moe Mentum=stooge inertia.(the force of heads being banged together)

For some reason,white's pieces seem to be moving faster than black's.

Apr-08-05  Ezzy: John A Grefe played the tournament of his life in this USA Championship. He was the lowest rated player at Elo 2200, and yet he finished joint first with Lubomir Kavalek on 9.5/12. Amazing!!!!
Apr-08-05  pazzed paun: In the months before the tournament Grefe worked a construction job by day and studied the Sicilian at night. At that time he had a very narrow repotoire. It would great to see him start writing about chess again!
Apr-08-05  Ezzy: Here's a short interview with Grefe after he became USA Champion
Apr-10-05  iron maiden: Was 8...h6 really necessary? It seems only to drive the white bishop to a better square.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: White's demolition of pawn structure combination, starting with 17. Nxf7!, sets up a winning Queen sacrifice and queening combination.
Premium Chessgames Member
  fm avari viraf: My hearty Congratulations to Grefe for winning the US Title as well as for this marvellous game! The same year , I won my Gujarat State Chess Title & in all five consecutive Gujarat State Chess Titles.
Oct-14-08  jerseybob: In answer to iron maiden, 8..h6 is the preface to what became known as the Browne Variation. It would spring into its full glory if white played a move like 11.Bd3, whereupon g5 12.fg,Ne5 leads to exciting play with black controlling the g4 square with his knights. But Grefe's 11.Be2! halts that idea in its tracks because white now controls g4. The key to successfully playing the Browne Variation is waiting till white plays Bd3. In their 1974 U.S. Championship game, also in this database, Browne held back on h6 until white had played Bd3. Grefe had another idea in that game, one which prevented the Browneian g5, but Browne, at the very height of his powers, still won.
May-22-09  mindmaster: Vow...a really simple game with an amazing Queen sac.....
May-22-09  gustavoarsilva: John Grefe has written a very good book, "Progressing through Chess". I hope this book is still in print.
May-22-09  randomsac: Nice job breaking through the kingside. Things were getting very ugly for black, as he will soon lose his queen after 21 ...Kxe7
22 Rf7+skewering the queen

he could also suffer the mate in one if he refuses the pawn.

May-22-09  WhiteRook48: how funny
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: The pieces really fly in this game-ending in the loser getting the Melbourne Method (death by surgery in two hours).
Premium Chessgames Member
  DarthStapler: Pun has been used before though
May-22-09  lzromeu: so close, so far. I think that great black mistake was in 17...bxc3. I see 2 or 3 better moves. bxc3 should wait. And another example of castle importancy
May-22-09  thegoldenband: <jerseybob: 8..h6 is the preface to what became known as the Browne Variation. It would spring into its full glory if white played a move like 11.Bd3, whereupon g5 12.fg,Ne5 leads to exciting play with black controlling the g4 square with his knights. But Grefe's 11.Be2! halts that idea in its tracks because white now controls g4.>

Indeed, when I looked at the position around move 11 (before looking at your notes), I thought "Boy, ...Rb8 doesn't look that relevant; what Black needs is to play ...g5 and fight for control of g4 and e5. If he can't play that, or some sort of central break with ...d5 or ...e5, he's in trouble."

May-22-09  waustad: <Darth> that's the point, these are the pun winners from the past.
May-22-09  Octal: What about 15 gxf6!? Rxg3 16 fxe7:
<A> 16 ... Rxg2 17 Ndb5! axb5 18 Nxb5 Qa5 (18 ... Qd7 19 Nxd6+ Qxd6 20 Rxd6 Rxe2 21 Rd8#) 19 e8=Q+ <B> 16 ... Rg8 (stopping 19 e8=Q+) 17 Ndb5! axb5 18 Nxb5 Qa5 19 Nxd6+ Kd7 20 Nxf7+: <B1> 20 ... Ke8 21 Rd8+ <B2> 20 ... Kc6 21 Rd6+ Kc5 22 Bf2+ Kb4 23 c3+ Ka4 24 Rd4+ <B3> 20 ... Kc7 21 Nxe5, and Black seems forced, due to the threats of 22 Bg3, 22 Rd8, 22 Rf8, and 22 Rf7 to play 21 ... Qxe5 22 Bg3 Rxg3 23 e8=Q which is bad. <C> 21 Rxc3 bxc3 22 Kb1 seems better for White. And if this variation is troublesome to white, maybe he can sidestep it by playing 16 Nbd5!? instead of 16 fxe7 immediately, attempting to reach a position from <A> or <B> by an inversion of moves.
May-22-09  Octal: After coming up with that idea above on my own, I feel "plagiarized" when something similar happened in the actual game...
May-23-09  AnalyzeThis: Were you even born in 1973?
May-23-09  Octal: I'd like to add something else to line <C>: <C> 21 Rxc3 bxc3 22 Kb1 seems better for White. If 22 ... Bd7, for example, White can play 23 Bh5 Ba4 24 Bg3!: <C1> 24 ... Kxe7 25 Bxe5 dxe5 26 Rxf7+ When a discovered check will win the queen. <C2> 24 ... Nc4 25 Bxf7+ Kxe7 26 Bh4+: <C2a> 26 ... Kf8 27 Bf7+ Kf8? (27 ... Kd7 28 Be6+ is <C2b>) Ne6#. <C2b> 26 ... Kd7 27 Bxe6+: C2b1> 27 ... Kc7 28 Rf7+ Kb6 29 Bxc4 Qxc4 25 Bf2
<C2b2> 27 ... Ke8 28 Bxc4 (28 Bf7+ is an immediate draw) 28 ... Qc4 29 Rf6 with some threats, although I don't know if they are decisive. In practical play White definitely has his chances, but so does Black.
Mar-10-11  I play the Fred: A much more fitting, and therefore better, use of this pun.
Mar-10-11  sevenseaman: Strong endgame play. Browne must have felt more and more helpless with many arrows piercing his flesh, crunching his bone.

21. Nxd6+, the very last nail in the coffin.

Feb-27-19  SBC:

The title, "Good Grefe, Walter Browne" was usurped from Grefe's and Waterman's "Best of Lone Pine" book (p.119) where it's the title of the 1976 chapter.

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