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Traian Stanciu vs Andrzej Maciejewski
Bucharest (1974), Bucharest ROU
Alekhine Defense: Saemisch Attack (B02)  ·  1-0



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Aug-29-15  dfcx: got the first move but missed the second, went for 23. Bxe6+, there goes my five day streak and chance to get my first six days in a row.

My failed line:

22.Rxf7 Kxf7 (Qxf7? 23.Bxe6 wins) 23.Bxe6+? Qxe6 24. Rf1+, expecting ...Ke7 and play Bg5+ next

But after
24... Qf5! the game is even.

Aug-29-15  diagonalley: ... i too went for the simple 23.R-KB1+ ... and i still think there's a strong continuation
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: Me too.
Aug-29-15  patzer2: For today's Saturday puzzle, I got the initial demolition 22.Rxf7+!, but after 22...Kxf7 missed the strongest follow-up with 23. Bg5! .

Black's last best chance at holding the game level or better might be the improvement 12...Na5! = (-0.12 @ 22 depth, Deep Fritz 14).

Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: The text 23 Bg5 is a really nice move.

If 23...Rh8, then 24 Qf3+ wins black's queen.

click for larger view

If 23...Qxg5, then 24 Qxe6+ is a forced mate.

click for larger view

Good puzzle.

Aug-29-15  Abdel Irada: I looked at this too quickly, assumed too much, and would apparently have let Black escape, because I too missed 23. Bg5! (the star move) and went with 23. Rf1+. But at least it seems I'm in good company.

Afterward, I asked myself why I didn't consider 23. Bg5!, and the answer seems to be partially because 23. Rf1+ is so thematic a move in such circumstances as to be almost reflexive, and partly because I didn't take time to look at what would happen if Black grabbed the bishop.

In retrospect, this daring sac makes perfect sense, and I hope that if I ever somehow find myself in a similar position I will remember it. But will I? It's not so easy under tournament conditions, with time pressure and other considerations, and the resulting position is more than loose: It's a tightrope walk across the Grand Canyon during an 8.3 earthquake.

Stanciu is to be commended for his courage as much as his brilliancy.

Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: Saw the first move, but thought the second move would be 23.Qh7. Sigh.
Aug-29-15  morfishine: Count me in the <22.Rxf7> 22...Kxf7 <23.Rf1+> crowd:


Aug-29-15  Cheapo by the Dozen: Like most other folks I thought the second move was Rf1+, with Black only having one playable response (... Ke8).
Aug-29-15  Braidwood: Me too. And it seems to me that 23. Rf1+, Ke8, 24. Qh7 should be winning too.
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White has the bishop pair for a bishop and a knight.

Black threatens 22... Nxd4.

The white pieces look ready to attack the black king using the light squares and f-file. This suggests 22.Rxf7:

A) 22... Kxf7 23.Rf1+

A.1) 23... Ke8 24.Qg4

A.1.a) 24... Rb8 25.Qxg6+

A.1.a.i) 25... Kd8 26.Bg5 and the black queen and bishop look lost (26... Bf8 27.Rxf8+, etc.).

A.1.a.ii) 25... Qf7 26.Rxf7 Rxf7 27.Bxe6 Nd8 28.Bxf7+ Nxf7 29.Qxg7 + - [Q+B+3P vs R+B].

A.1.b) 24... Rc7 25.Qxg6+

A.1.b.i) 25... Kd7 26.Rf7

A.1.b.i.1) 26... Qxf7 27.Qxf7+ Kc8 28.Qxe6+ Kb8 29.c3 + - [Q+B+3P vs 2R+N].

A.1.b.i.2) 26... Kc8 27.Rxe7 Rxe7 (27... Nxe7 28.Qxg7) 28.Bxe6+ Kb8 29.c3 + - [Q+B+3P vs 2R+N].

A.1.b.i.3) 26... Nxd4 27.Rxe7+ Kxe7 28.Qxg7+ Ke8 29.Qxc7 is a massacre.

A.1.b.ii) 25... Qf7 26.Rxf7 Rxf7 27.Bxe6 Rd7 28.Bxd7+ Kxd7 29.Qxf7+, etc.

A.1.c) 24... Rd5 25.Qxg6+ Kd7 26.Rf7 Bf8 27.Bxd5 exd5 28.Rxe7+ + - [Q+2P vs R+N].

A.1.d) 24... Nxd4 25.Qxg6+ Qf7 26.Rxf7 Rxf7 (26... Ne2+ 27.Kf7 Rxf7+ 28.Kxe2) 27.Bxd4 Rxd4 28.Bxe6 Rd1+ 29.Kh2 Bxe5+ 30.Kg4 Rdf1 31.Bxf7+ Rxf7 32.Qe6+ Re7 33.Qg8+ Kd7 34.Qa8 + - [Q+2P vs R+B].

A.1.e) 24... g5 25.Qh5+ Qf7 26.Rxf7 Rxf7 27.Bxe6 is similar to previous lines.

A.1.f) 24... Qf7 25.Rxf7 followed by 26.Bxe6 looks similar to the above lines.

A.2) 23... Kg8 24.Bxe6+ Qf7 25.Bxe6 Nxd4 26.Bxd4 wins decisive material.

A.3 23... Bf6 24.Rxf6+ wins decisive material.

B) 22... Qxf7 23.Bxe6 looks similar to the above lines

C) 22... Qe8 23.Rxd7 followed by 24.Bxe6+ wins decisive material.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: My maneuver Rf1+ & Qg4 seems to be advantageous but nowhere near as strong as Bg5.

Bloody automatisms...

Aug-29-15  wooden nickel: In the position a move earlier before the queen retreat (21... Qe7?)

click for larger view

Black must have been contemplating 21... Nxd4 22.Bxd4 Rxd4 23.c3

click for larger view

forcing 23...Qxb3 and leading to unclear play.

<Abdel Irada: I looked at this too quickly, assumed too much, and would apparently have let Black escape, because I too missed 23. Bg5! (the star move) and went with 23. Rf1+. But at least it seems I'm in good company.> Exactly!

Aug-29-15  whiteshark: Uh... herd instinct, great minds think, ..not.
Aug-29-15  patzer2: < agb2002> <C) 22... Qe8 23.Rxd7 followed by 24.Bxe6+ wins decisive material.> Surely you mean 22...Qe8 23. Rf1+ followed by 24. Bxe6+ wins decisive material.

One possibility is 23... Qe8 24. Rf1+ Kg8 25. Bxe6+ Rf7 (25... Qxe6 26. Qxe6+ Kh8 27. Rf3 ) 26. Bxf7+ Qxf7 27. Rxf7 Kxf7 28. Bxd8 Nxd8 29. Qd7+ Kg8 30. Qxd8+ (mate-in-eight to follow, Deep Fritz 14 @ 22 depth)

Premium Chessgames Member
  Zhbugnoimt: Count me in the Rf1+ group.
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: <patzer2: < agb2002> <C) 22... Qe8 23.Rxd7 followed by 24.Bxe6+ wins decisive material.> Surely you mean 22...Qe8 23. Rf1+ followed by 24. Bxe6+ wins decisive material.>

I simply considered a third possibility: if the black queen retreats then Black loses too much material.

Premium Chessgames Member
  catlover: <Whiteshark> Moooo...count me in, too.
Aug-29-15  kevin86: The circus of sacrifices takes apart black's position like a bomb.
Premium Chessgames Member
  pawn to QB4: Got it, but only by reasoning that if 23 Rf1+ works (couldn't see how it did), it's not a Saturday puzzle, it's a simple rook sac. Wouldn't get it in a serious game, I suspect.
Aug-29-15  BOSTER: < A.I. :It's not so easy under tournament conditions>.

But in the real game we have one advantage, we know the move before POTD , and if we ask what was the reason, may be we can find how to lure the black queen.

Aug-29-15  reticulate: It's pretty easy to see that e6 is the key square, and so undermining it with 22. Rxf7 is relatively straightforward as well. But what to do after 23...Kxf7? I looked hard to 23. Qh7, but could not figure out a response to 23....Rh8. Then 23. Rf1, which does seem to lead to a long-term advantage for White, but no simple win that I could find. I even considered the simple 23. d5, which I still think is sort of interesting. But It never crossed my mind to play 23. Bg5, which is an utterly fantastic move once you really examine the implications. That's the sort of move which explains why I am not a GM.
Aug-29-15  saturn2: I got as far as 23 Rf1 Ke8
24 Bxe6 R7somewhere, 25 Qg4 and only 26 Bg5 then.
Aug-29-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: White has an active bishop pair for N+B, with a nice pawn wedge at e5, a semi-open f-file to work with, and an f7 target weakened by absence of a light-squared bishop. The breakthrough 22.Rxf7 is begging to be played immediately, because the other white pieces are already in strong attacking positions.

22.Rxf7!! Kxf7 (Qxf7? 23.Bxe6 with major material gain) 23.Rf1+!

I was tempted by an immediate 23.Bxe6+ Ke8 (Qxe6? 24.Rf1+ Ke7 25.Bg5+), but black gets counter-play after 24.Qg4? Nxe5!

23... Ke8 (Kg8 24.Bxe6+ wins queen) 24.Qg4!

The threats of Qxg6+ (primary) and Bxe6 look to be decisive. Best defense I can find might be 24... Nxd4 25.Qxg6+ Qf7 26.Rxf7 Rxf7 27.Bxd4 Rxd4 28.Bxe6 Rd1+! 29.Kh2 Bxe5+ 30.Kh3 Rf1 31.Bxf7 Rxf7 with drawing chances for black.

All I have time for - time for review,,,

Aug-29-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: A lot of good solvers missed 23.Bg5! Too many good attacking motifs to see a nice interpolation.
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