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Ilia Smirin vs Mikhail Ulybin
Borzhomi U20 (1988), Apr-??
French Defense: Winawer. Poisoned Pawn Variation General (C18)  ·  0-1

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Oct-03-15  Everett: 42... For the win!

Black needs improved access to the long diagonal and avoid mate in the process..,

Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: Unbelievable move by Black. Felt like it would have worked as a Sunday puzzle.
Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: 42...Ra7 was as much a defensive move as an attacking one, because white was threatening 43. Qxg7#. It was either that or 42...Bf3+ 43. Bxf3 Qxf3+ 44. Qxf3 Rxf3, which leads to a dubious endgame.
Mar-05-21  mel gibson: Didn't see it.

Stockfish 13 agrees with the text:

42... Ra7

(42. .. Ra7 (♖a6-a7 ♕b7-b8+
♔g8-h7 ♕b8-g3 ♕e3xg3 ♖g1xg3 e6xd5 ♖g3-g5 ♗h5-d1 h2-h3 ♖a7-f7 ♔h1-g1 ♖f2-f1+ ♔g1-h2 ♗d1-f3 ♔h2-g3 ♖f7-f6 ♖b2-b5 ♗f3-e4 h4-h5 ♖f1-f3+ ♔g3-h4 ♖f3xc3 ♖b5-b1 ♖c3xc2 ♖g5-g4 ♖c2-d2 ♖b1-g1 ♖f6-f7 ♖g4-g6 ♗e4-f5 ♖g6-c6 ♖d2xd4+ ♖g1-g4 ♗f5-d7 ♖g4xd4 ♗d7xc6 ♔h4-g5 ♖f7-f2 ♖d4-d1 c4-c3 h3-h4 c3-c2) +9.63/35 85)

score for Black +9.63 depth 35

Mar-05-21  Honey Blend: I might have played the simple 42. ... g6 knowing full well that 43. ♕xa6? ♗f3+ leads to mate. On 43. ♗g2 ♖xg2!? lays some traps for White to fall on, ♕ or ♖ captures are mistakes, after 44. ♔xg2 ♕d2+ more traps ahead: 45. ♔h1? ♕f2 and 45. ♔f1?? ♕e2#, and 45. ♔h3 (or ♔g3) ♕xc3+ might as well end up in a perpetual, or White can settle for 46. ♖g3 ♕xb2 47. ♕xa6 ♕xd4 and the isolated pawns in the Queenside will become liabilities.
Mar-05-21  Walter Glattke: Uh, getting draw with 42.-Rxh2+ 43.Kxh2 Qf4+ reaching perpetual, 42.-Bf3+ 43.Bxf3 Qxf3+ 44.Qxf3 Rxf3 45.Rg3! even +- 42.- Ra7 threatens mate over f3: (42.-exd5? 43.Qxg7#) 43. Rxg7+ Kf8 44.Qxa7!? Bf3+ 45.Bxf3 Qxf3+ 46.Kg1 Rf1# so 44.Qb8+ Kh7 45.Qg3 exd5 wins or 45.Rg3 Rf1+ wins option: 42.- Ra7 43.Bxe6+ Qxe6 44.Rxb6 not easy then
Mar-05-21  Brenin: I missed the clever defence 42 ... Ra7 of g7, and would probably have played the prosaic g6. White's 42 Bxd5 was very tempting, but he needed to shore up his own K's defence with 42 Rbb1 or 42 Qb8+ Kh7 43 Qg3.
Mar-05-21  saturn2: 42....Ra7 spang into the eye first. Black wants to check on the long diagonal and deflects one of its two defenders.
Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  malt: Went for 42...Ra7 43.Qb8+

(43.Q:a7 Bf3+ 44.B:f3 Q:f3+ leads to mate )

43...Kh7 44.Qg3 Q:g3 45.R:g3 ed5

Mar-05-21  Granny O Doul: At 45 I went for ...Qe2+ 46. Kh3 Rf2 47. Rg5 (or 47. Bg2 Rxg2 48. Rxg2 Qf3+) ...exd5.
Mar-05-21  goodevans: I got this surprisingly quickly.

Clearly black can't allow 43.Qxg7# but he CAN allow 43.Rxg7+ since the K is perfectly safe on f8 as long as 44.Qe7# is covered. Once you realise that then 42...Ra7 becomes obvious (at least it did for me).

Mar-05-21  Granny O Doul: The nice thing about White's rook on b2 is that it isn't a knight. And a noteworthy exchange sac in the opening though I suppose it was theory.
Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  Breunor: Also got this pretty fast. At first I thought 42 ... exd5 looked good until I saw 43 Qxg7 checkmate! But clearly white canítí play Qxa7 or Qxa6. So I saw 42 ..... Ra7.

I first looked at 43 Qc6 but then 43 .... exd5 simply wins. I didnít see all of the following moves after 43 Qb8 ch but it looked like black could avoid the perpetual and then overwhelm especially with control of the a8Ėh1 diagonal.

Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Lab ok ivory Ra7 flung ace method key lab rails bar bait with mad gas feuds quo quick conky puzzle pivot its tow again helms clung bap i vasts daisy joy key i qb8 gab aorta job a hatchet wrack Bxd5 gives acrid mad buccaneer wet key o totadd cat hubbub flick hatchet Ra7 buff!
Mar-05-21  Everett: < Everett: 42... For the win! Black needs improved access to the long diagonal and avoid mate in the process..,>

Roughly 6 years later, a worthy game is noticed!

Patience, my friends. There are gems and truths to be uncovered, all in good time.

Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Rub off rubbish vip bd5 may list qb8 drawish no?
Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: Black is one pawn down.

White threatens Qxg7#, Rxg7+, Qxa6, etc.

Black has Bf3+, Rxh2+, Ra7, Bg4 and Bg6.

The obvious 42... Bf3+ 43.Bxf3 (43.Rg2 Rf1#) 43... Qxf3+ 44.Qxf3 Rxf3 45.Rg3 leads to an inferior endgame.

-----

The rook sacrifice on h2 only seems to achieve a draw, 42... Rxh2+ 43.Kxh2 Qf2+:

A) 44.Rg2 Qxh4+ 45.Kg1 Qe1+, perpetual.

B) 44.Bg2 Qf4+ 45.Kh1 (45.Kh3 Bg4#) 45... Qxh4+ 46.Bh3 Qxh3#.

C) 44.Kh1 Qxh4+ 45.Kg2 Qg4+ 46.Kf2 (46.Kf1 Qe2#; 46.Kh1 Qh3#; 46.Kh2 Qh4+ 47.Kg2 Qg4+ repeats moves) 46... Qe2+ 47.Kg3 Qg4+, perpetual.

D) 44.Kh3 Qf5+

D.1) 45.Kh2 Qf2+ repeats moves.

D.2) 45.Kg2(3) Qg4+ as in C.

D.3) 45.Rg4 Bxg4+ 46.Kg2 (46.Kh2 Qf2+ 47.Kh1 exd5 wins; 46.Kg3 exd5 47.Qxa6? Qf3+ 48.Kh2 Qf2+ 49.Kh1 Bf3#) 46... Qxd5+ 47.Qxd5 exd5 wins a piece.

-----

The decoy move looks far stronger, 42... Ra7:

A) 43.Qxa7 Bf3+ 44.Bxf3 Qxf3+ 45.Rg2 Rf1#.

B) 43.Rxg7+ Kf8 (43... Kh8 44.Rh7+ Kg8 45.Rg7+ repeats moves) 44.Qb8+ Kxg7 45.Qxa7+ Rf7 46.Qa8 Rf1+ 47.Kg2 Rg1#.

C) 43.Qc8+ Kh7 44.Qxe6 Bf3+ and mate in two.

-----

An interesting resource is 42... Bg6 (42... Bg4 43.Qb8+ Kh7 44.Qg3 Qxg3 45.Rxg3 exd5 46.Rxg4):

A) 43.Rxg6 Rf1+ and mate next.

B) 43.Bxe6+ Qxe6 44.Qxa6 Qe4+ and mate next.

C) 43.Qc8+ Kh7 (43... Rf8 44.Qxe6+) and White is defenseless against the double threat Be4+ and exd5.

D) 43.Qb8+ Kh7 44.Qe5 (44.Qg3 Be4+ 45.Bxe4 Qxe4+ wins decisive material) 44... Qxe5 45.dxe5 exd5 wins a piece.

E) 43.Bg2 Rxg2

E.1) 44.Rxg2 Qe1+ 45.Rg1 Be4+ wins decisive material.

E.2) 44.Qxg2 Be4 wins decisive material.

E.3) 44.Kxg2 Be4+ wins decisive material.

E.4) 44.Qc8+ Kh7 45.Kxg2 (45.Rxg2 Qe1+ 46.Rg1 Be4#) 45... Be4+ 46.Kf1 Ra8 is winning.

-----

I'd play 42... Ra7 since it looks simpler.

Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: I overlooked the game line, so not that simple.
Mar-05-21  20MovesAhead: 42... Rf7 =
Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: Not as flashy or effective as 42...Ra7, but maybe 42... Bg6!? gets the job done as well.


click for larger view

It blocks the mate threat and makes 43...exd5 a danger for white.

Notice that the bishop is untouchable as 43 Rxg6?? leads to mate in two.

It's worth playing out. Two possible responses for white are 43 Bc6 and 43 Rbb1.

One can also compare 42...Bg6 to 42...g6.

Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: <agb2002> got to my line as I was proofing my post.
Mar-05-21  Cellist: I saw 42 ... Ra7 but expected White to answer 43. Qc6, but that just loses the Bishop and does not prevent mate later. I thought Qb8+ was a pointless check because it weakens the white long diagonal, but it holds longer than Qc6.
Mar-05-21  RandomVisitor: 37...Bh5 and 39...Bh5 were likely earlier winning moves, and a big miss was 36...hxg3!


click for larger view

Stockfish_21022619_x64_modern:

<40/68 03:00 -9.57 36...hxg3 37.Rxb7 gxh2+> 38.Kh1 Qg3 39.Qe7 Bxa4 40.Qc7 Qxc7 41.Rxc7 Bxc2 42.Rb2 Bd3 43.Kxh2 a4 44.Bh3 Rg5 45.Rcb7 Bf5 46.Bf1 a3

Mar-05-21  RandomVisitor: The only thing wrong with 42...Bg6 is that 42...Ra7 is a better move:


click for larger view

Stockfish_21022619_x64_modern:

<47/71 2:54:16 -16.18 42...Ra7 43.Qb8+ Kh7 44.Qg3> Qxg3 45.Rxg3 exd5 46.Rg5 Bd1 47.Kg1 Raf7 48.Rb1 Rf1+ 49.Kg2 R7f2+ 50.Kh3 Rxc2 51.Rg3 Bg4+ 52.Kxg4 Rxb1

<47/79 2:54:16 -9.04 42...Bg6 43.Rbb1 exd5> 44.Rxg6 Qe4+ 45.Kg1 Qxg6+ 46.Kxf2 Qxc2+ 47.Ke3 Qxc3+ 48.Kf4 Qxd4+ 49.Kg3 Qe3+ 50.Kg2 Qe4+ 51.Kf2 Qxh4+ 52.Kf1 Qh3+

47/32 2:54:16 0.00 42...Rf7 43.Qc8+ Kh7 44.Bg2 Rf2 45.Rbb1 Bf3 46.Qxc4 Rxc2 47.Qxa6 Qe4 48.Qf1 Rxg2 49.Rxg2 Bxg2+ 50.Qxg2 Qxb1+ 51.Qg1 Qe4+ 52.Qg2 Qe1+

Mar-05-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: White went astray with 30.Ne3 and 31.f5. Of course, 31...Nxf5 was not an option for 32.Nxd5! but after simple 31...Qd8 white has suddenly no good move and Pf5 is doomed due to pin with uncovered Bishop on f3. 30.Ne5 was correct.

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