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Viktor Korchnoi vs Robert Huebner
Korchnoi - Huebner Candidates Final (1980/81), Merano ITA, rd 10, Jan-07
Queen's Indian Defense: Kasparov Variation (E12)  ·  (no result)



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Kibitzer's Corner
May-31-07  benderules: why did Huebner resign this match?
May-31-07  nescio: <benderules: why did Huebner resign this match?>

Apr-11-08  Wone Jone: <benderrules> Maybe, he was yella?
Dec-30-13  Petrosianic: Same reason he resigned his match with Petrosian, though only a point down. His nerves broke.

In this case, Huebner was was a point up, was on the brink of winning again to go two up, but blundered and lost instead. He was so upset that he lost the next one too, and just said the heck with it with two more games unfinished. One of them was a dead draw and the other was this game, which Korchnoi clamed he would have won, but I have serious doubts. (I have gone over this game with Fritz, and don't see any clear wins).

According to Chess Life, both of the unfinished games were going to be adjudicated with an expected result of 1and they expected result of 1½ for Korchnoi. In the end, it looks like it never happened, and Chess Life, in typical fashion, never bothered to follow up on the story. Heck of a way to pick a world championship challenger.

Since Hubner failed to show up for the two resumptions, by rights he should have forfeited both games, but apparently didn't.

Dec-30-13  Petrosianic: This is why I didn't feel too sorry for Huebner when he lost his 1983 Candidates Quarterfinal to Smyslov on a roulette wheel spin. Didn't want him getting to the end again and depriving us of another real result.
Dec-30-13  Howard: To elaborate a bit more, Hubner complained about the local media being "hostile" to him, plus he didn't like the playing conditions either. Regarding playing conditions, that's one of the reasons he resigned his Candidates match against Petrosian in 1971.

It was indeed a shame that Korchnoi couldn't have won the match in a more legitimate way---it could have given him more confidence when he played Karpov in 1981 for the world title. By an interesting coincidence, the (second) Karpov--Korchnoi match took place in Merano, Italy....just like the Korchnoi-Hubner match did !

Hubner's fourth and last time in the Candidates was in 1991 when he lost to Timman. At least Hubner didn't resign that match !

Dec-30-13  Petrosianic: All chess players have excuses for poor results. It's almost obligatory. But for one guy to resign two Candidates Matches prematurely, while only trailing by one point each time, is an embarrassing legacy. Especially when one of them is a Candidates Final.

Imagine if he'd gotten past Korchnoi, and then done this in a championship match against Karpov. That's all the game would have needed, right in between the 1975 debacle and the 1984 one.

Dec-30-13  Petrosianic: Getting back to the original question, what would have been the result of this game if adjudicated? Korchnoi thought he deserved a win, and Chess Life thought that was likely. I still think that by rights, Huebner forfeited both games. In the end no adjudication was done. But if one had been done, I don't see awarding White a win in this game. He's better, yes, but not that much better.
Jun-17-14  RookFile: White is clearly better in the final position. He can play this position "forever", waiting for black to make a mistake. Is it lost for black? No, I don't think so.

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