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Joel Lautier vs Peter Leko
Ubeda (1997), Ubeda ESP, rd 5, Feb-??
Sicilian Defense: Scheveningen. Fianchetto Variation (B80)  ·  1-0

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Nov-09-14  plumbst: Insane. White is down a Bishop for a pawn. White's Rook is under attack.

White is on the cusp of breaking through to Black's King, but he needs more forces, so..

27.Nd5!

Attacking the undefended Knight which is tied to guarding the Bishop.

27...Nxd5.
(27...Bxh3 28.Nxe7+ Kf8 29.Qxf7#; 27...Ng6 28.Qh7+ Kf8 29.Rxf5; 27...Be6 28.Nxe7+ Kf8 29.Nc6)

28.Rxf5 Qb7
(28...Nxe3 29.Qxf7#)

29.Qh7+ Kf8

30.g6 Rd7
(30...Nxe3 31.Rxf7+ is an easy win; 30...Nf6 31.Bh6)

31.Bh6 f6
(31...Ne6 32.Qh8+ Ke7 33.Rxf7#; 31...Bxh6 32.Qxh6+ Ke7 [32...Ke8 33.g7] 33.gxf7 is too much)

32.Bxg7+ Rxg7
33.Qh8+ Rg8
34.Rxf6+ Nxf6 (34...Ke7 35.Rh7+)
35.Qxf6+ Ke8
36.Re3+ Ne4 (36..Kd7 37.Re7+)
37.Qe6+ Kf8 (37...Ke7 38.Qxg8+ Qg5+ 40.Rg3 and White will escape the checks) 38.Rf3+ Kg7
39.Rf7+ Qxf7
40.Qxf7+ Kh6
41.Qf4+ Ng5
42.h4
White wins.

Nov-09-14  plumbst: Whoops, In 30...Nf6 31.Bh6? hangs the Queen. But 31.Rxf6! transposes to the game.

However Black actually has the option of 30...f6!? which after 31.Bxc5 dxc5 32.c4 wins the piece back (31...Nb4 32.Rxf6+) but looks unclear.

So, not really sure if my move-order was better; Black has more ways to mess up but has the option of the line described above.

Nov-09-14  M.Hassan: "Insane"
White to play 27.?
White has a pawn for a Bishop

27.Nd5
A) 27........Nxd5
28.Rxf5 Nxe3
29.Qf7#

B) 27.........Bg6
28.Nxe7+ Kf8
29.Nxg6+ Kg8 pinned pawn can not take Knight
30.Qh7#
<29...Ke8 30.Ne5 B/dxe5 31.Qxf7#>

C) 27.........Qb7
28.Nf6+ Bxf6
29.gxf6 Ng6
30.Qh7+ Kf8
31.Qg7+ Ke8
32.Rxf5 Qe4
33.Qg8+ Nf8
34.Qxf8+ Kxf8
35.Rh8#

Nov-09-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: I think that you saw everything through 42.Re7!! you may legitimately claim credit for this one. Needless to say, I cannot. Never would have seen this one over the board.
Nov-09-14  alshatranji: I don't know about the greatest game ever. But this is certainly a very impressive game. Nd5 and the few successive moves are not very hard to find, but the beauty of Lautier's attack lies in cool (almost mysterious) moves like f5 and Bg6, not to mention the endgame. I mean it's difficult for me to foresee 45.Qf4 after (the possible) 44...Qxe7, let alone plan for this in advance with Bg3. Then there was the surprising finale: the ferocious attack is resolved in the endgame. It is hard for none other than the seasoned master to settle to concluding a brilliant attack with an ending where you're the exchange down, and the win is not that obvious. I guess this is what separates him from the amateur.
Nov-09-14  gofer: I could play the simple 27 Rxf5+ Nxf5 28 Qh7+ Kf8 29 Qxf5 which wins makes some progress in clawing a piece back, but not much! What I really want to play Rxf5 and then Qxf7#, but Ne7 is not playing ball. So is this Sunday POTD a simple case of remove the defender???

<27 Nd5 ...>

~~~

<An Englishman: Good Evening: I think that you saw everything through 42.Re7!! you may legitimately claim credit for this one. Needless to say, I cannot. Never would have seen this one over the board.>

Ditto. <42 Re7> was really rather nice and I didn't get even half way to that point in the game...

Nov-09-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: At first glance, <27.Rxf5> must be examined. After 27...Nxf5 28.Qh7+ Kf8 29.Qxf5 White has recovered the piece but is still down an exchange and with the tempo spent, Black now has 29...Qc8


click for larger view

After Queen moves, Black has 30...Qe6 working towards balancing the position

The only other try I see for White is undermining the defender with <27.Nd5> Black is forced the accept 27...Nxd5 (not 27...Bxh3?? 28.Qxf7+ Kh8 29.Qh5+ Kg8 30.Nxe7#) and after 28.Rxf5 White's attack is extremely dangerous if not overwhelming


click for larger view

Black can hold onto the piece and protect <f7> with 28...Qb7 at which point White has either 29.Qh7+ or 29.g6; Its hard for me to tell visually which one is best

*****
PM: Of course, 29.g6!! Wish I'd settled on that

*****

Nov-09-14  mistreaver: Sunday. White to play. Insane. 27.?
White is a piece down, but he has all his pieces pointing at the black king and probably only a final breakthrough is needed. The move one automatically wants to make is:
27 Rxf5
in order to remove the attack from the h3 rook and also remove the defender of the h7 square. 27 ... Nxf5
28 g6
I kinda like this move, attacking the knights, creating a potential Bh6 threat. 28 ... fxg6
29 Qxg6
white is material down, but he seems to have very strong attack after say 29 ... Rf8
30 Nd5
I don't know. I don't see anything forced after, but i am sure that Rxf5 and g6 are the moves. I wonder where the insane one is. Time to check and see. ---
Hmmm, in my line black can play 28... Nxe3 and apparently he is winning. I saw Nd5 but thought maybe that black can take the rook. I totally forgote that f7 is hanging and that black doesn't have particular choice.
Nov-09-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Really? Leko had a decisive game? Maybe I'm still dreaming...

Anyway, I thought 27.Rxf5 Nxf5 28.Qh7+ Kf8 29.Qxf5 was winning. I wouldn't say it's losing, but it's kinda hard to win games being down the exchange for a pawn.

Nov-09-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: As I mentioned, the problem with <27.Rxf5> is after 27...Nxf5 28.Qh7+ Kf8 29.Qxf5 Black now has <29...Qc8>

Therefore, 27.Nd5 is best

*****

Nov-09-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: In complete hindsight it appears that either 39...Qh7 or 39...Qf6, below, prevents the text combination 40 Ne5+ Kb7 41 Rg7+ from occurring.


click for larger view

Don't know if if holds for black, though.

Nov-09-14  Nerwal: Judging from his annotations Lautier was not entirely satisfied with his play in this game although he won with an attractive attack. He felt he had something better at move 22 and that the game continuation was too messy given that Black's forces were badly placed. Indeed 22. b4!?, 22. ♘e2 (considered best by Lautier) or even 22. f5 may be better. The direct rook sacrifice 21. ♖xh5 is also interesting.
Nov-09-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White has a pawn for a bishop.

Black threatens 27... Bxh3.

A first idea was 27.g6 and if 27... Bxh3 then 28.Qh7+ Kf8 29.Rxf7+ Ke8 30.Rxg7 with the double threat Rxe7+ and Qxh3 looks good for White but it seems to fail miserably to 27... Bxg6.

A second idea is 27.Nd5 attacking the defenseless knight which is the only defender of the bishop on f5:

A) 27... Bxh3 28.Nxe7+ Kf8 29.Qxf7#.

B) 27... Nxd5 28.Rxf5 (threatens 29.Qxf7# and 29.Rxd5) 28... Qb7 29.g6

B.1) 29... Nxe3 30.Qh7+ (30.Rxf7 Qg2#) 30... Kf8 31.Rxf7+ Qxf7 (31... Ke8 32.Qg8+ Bf8 33.Qxf8#) 32.gxf7 (threatens Rxe3 and Qg8+ Ke7 Qxg7) 32... Bd4 33.c3 and Black seems to lose decisive material.

B.2) 29... f6 30.Rxd5 and White has an extra pawn and an overwhelming position with ideas like 31.Bxc5 b(d)xc5 32.Qh7+ Kf8 33.Qh8+ Bxh8 34.Rxh8+ Ke(g)7 35.Rh7+ and 36.Rxb7, etc.

B.3) 29... Nf6 30.Rxf6 Bxf6 31.Qh7+ Kf8 32.Bh6+ Ke8 (32... Ke7 33.Qxf7#) 33.Qg8+ Kd7 34.Qxf7+ Be7 (34... Kc8 35.Qxf6 and White seems to have more than enough compensation for the exchange) 35.Re3 Re8 (35... Ne4 36.Qf5+) 36.Bg5 Ne4 37.Qf5+ Kc7 38.Rxe4 Bxg5 39.Qf7+ Re7 (39... Kc6 40.Rc4#; 39... Kb8 40.Rxe8+ Ka7 41.Rxa8+ Kxa8 42.Qxb7+ Kxb7 43.g7 wins) 40.Rxe7+ Bxe7 41.Qxe7+ Kb8 42.Qxd6 and White has three pawns for the exchange.

C) 27... Qb7 28.Nxe7+ Qxe7 29.Rxf5 Bxb2 30.Qh7+ Kf8 31.Rhf3 looks winning for White.

Nov-09-14  TheBish: Lautier vs Leko, 1997

White to play (27.?) "Insane", White is down a piece for a pawn.

Already down a piece, no good is 27. Rxf5? Nxf5 28. Qh7+ Kf8 29. Qxf5, leaving White down the exchange for a pawn. But White can win the piece back and more:

27. Nd5!! Nxd5

Losing fast is 27...Bxh3?? 28. Nxe7+ Kf8 29. Qxf7#, and 27...Bg6? 28. Nxe7+ Kf8 29. Nxg6+.

28. Rxf5 Qb7

Otherwise White wins the piece back; the only move that guards against the mate threat and also protects the knight.

29. g6!

Renewing the threat on the knight, but more importantly, threatening 30. Rxf7 and 30. Qh7+ Kf8 31. Rxf7+, winning the queen.

29...Nf6

If 29...Nxe3 30. Qh7+ Kf8 31. Rxf7+ Qxf7 32. gxf7, winning, or 29...Rd7 30. Rxd5, regaining the piece with an extra pawn on g6 and a strong attack.

30. Rxf6! Bxf6 31. Qh7+ Kf8 32. Bh6+ Ke8 33. Qg8+ Kd7 34. Qxf7+ Be7

Or 34...Kc8 35. Qxf6 and White is slightly better with two connected passed pawns for the exchange and Black's badly placed king.

35. Re3 Re8 36. b4!

(Unclear is 36. Bg5 Ne4 37. Qf5+ Kc7 38. Rxe4 Bxg5 39. Qf7+ Re7 40. Rxe7+ Bxe7 41. Qxe7+ Kc6 42. Qf6 Qd7 43. Qc3+ Kb7 44. Qf3+ d5 45. h4, but it seems Black is surviving)


click for larger view

and White wins a piece back with a pressing attack -- 36...Ne4 37. Qf5+ or 36...Nxa4 37. Bg5 b5 (37...Kd8 38. Bxe7+ Rxe7 39. Qf8+) 38. Bxe7 Kc6 39. Re6! and White has a clear advantage.

Nov-09-14  tatarch: 42.Re7 is a helluva move. Good future puzzle.
Nov-09-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: Yes, Re7 is a great move.
Nov-09-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: Black missed a possible game-saving 39...Qf6 and white missed a spectacular finishing move, 46 Ne5!

At first it looks like that 46 Ne5 does not make sense as, for example, 46...Kc8 below, appears to hold for black.


click for larger view

But after 47 Rxd7 Rxd7 48 Nxd7 Kxd7 white wins a rook after 49 Qf7+, forcing the king to the back rank.


click for larger view

Chess is a beautiful game.

Nov-10-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: I solved this (except I didn't analyse it. I was also to move 60! But I had the main moves as played.

Also interesting was the possibility of a Q and R sac on h8 and then a B check on d4 but I couldn't get it to work in me noggin so to speak. But also lines where Black refused to take the knight were interesting. I went for Nf6+ and a strong attack. Fascinating attack by Lautier. Very complex.

Nov-11-14  Moszkowski012273: 21.gxh6... actually is pretty crushing not sure why it wasn't played.
Nov-13-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: The recent (27. ?) Sunday Nov 9th puzzle is incredibly difficult, especially since there's only a clear "best" move but not a sure "winning" move available to "solve" it.

The two strongest alternatives are 27. Nd5! and 27. Rxf5. Running them both through the computer, Fritz 12 initially prefers 27. Rxf5. However, as the program search increases to 21 depth, 27. Nd5! emerges as clearly stronger than 27. Rxf5. Yet Fritz shows neither 27. Nd5! (+1.20 @ 23/54 depth) nor 27. Rxf5 (+0.53 @ 23/54 depth) to be clearly decisive.

What's amazing about the play of both strong human players in this game is that for the first 11 moves of the combination (i.e. moves 27 through 37), both of these super GMs choose the moves analyzed best by the computer at 21 plus depth.

White is the first to deviate from deep computer analysis with 37. Bf4 (+0.31 @ 20 depth), which evaluates as a second best alternative to the Fritz choice of 37. g7 to (+1.40 @ 20 depth).

Black however makes it easier for White by playing 39...Qe6?! (+2.13 @ 20/43 depth). Instead, 39...Qf6! (+0.40 @ 20/43 depth) puts up far more resistance and leaves the outcome in doubt.

Nov-13-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <Moszkowski012273: 21.gxh6... actually is pretty crushing not sure why it wasn't played.> I agree. Fritz 12 indicates 21. gxh6! is a clear win after suggested best play of 21. gxh6! Kh8 22. f5! Ne5 23. Qg3 exf5 24. exf5 Rg8 25. h7! Rg7 26. Bh6! (+4.86 @ 20 depth).
Nov-13-14  Nerwal: <21.gxh6... actually is pretty crushing not sure why it wasn't played.>

In Scheveninguens and Velimirovic attacks gxh6 Kh7 generally slows down White's attack, that's why players familiar with those openings are reluctant to make this move even when this may be good. Lautier just gave 21. gxh6 ♔h7 22. ♘c4 ♖g8 with counterplay.

Nov-13-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <Nerwal> Thanks!

Took another look at 21. gxh6 Kh7, and the initial Fritz 12 evaluations above +3.0 slowly decline in most lines to under +2.0 or +1.0.

White may have a win after 21. gxh6 Kh7 with 22. Nc4, 22. f5, 22.Rg3 or 22. b5. However, if the task of winning the position is difficult for the computer at over 20 depth, I can see why Lautier avoided 21. gxh6!?.

Maybe 21. gxh6!? wins with perfect play, but perfect play isn't so easy to find with the clock ticking over the board.

Nov-13-14  Moszkowski012273: 21.gxh6,Kh7 22.b4!... (and black is busted)
Nov-13-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <Moszkowski012273: 21.gxh6,Kh7 22.b4!... (and black is busted)> Fritz 12 supports your assessment, giving 21.gxh6,Kh7 22.b4! 22. b5! as winning.

Fritz 12's analysis goes 22.b4! Nxb4 23.f5 Rf8 24.Rg3 Kh8 25.e5 Nc6 26.fxg6 (26. f6! may be even stronger) 26...fxg6 27.Rxf8+ Qxf8 28.Qxg6 Rb8 29.Bxc6 Bxc6 30.Nc4 d5 31.Nd6 Be8 32.Qg4 (+3.23 @ 21/50 depth).

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