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Robert Huebner vs Alexandru Sorin Segal
WchT U26 fin-A 16th (1969), Dresden, rd 6, Aug-01
Russian Game: Modern Attack. Center Attack (C43)  ·  0-1



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Given 6 times; par: 104 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Apr-15-12  gofer: White has obviously been munching pawns, but has neglected to develop his bits. So the two pawn advantage can quickly disappear in a whithering attack on his under-protected king. The problem for white is that is he doesn't follow the forced sequence he is going to go a whole piece down and that isn't going to get him very far, when his Ra1 is still boxed-in.

<17 ... Nxd3>
<18 cxd3 Rxc1>
<19 Rxc1 Nd4!!>

The whole point of exchange. Black threatens Qxf2+ mating and Ne2+ winning the rook. There is only defense to both threats.

<20 Rf1 Nc2!>

Black switches tack and goes for the boxed-in rook because the other rook is defending Pf2 against the mating threat, so cannot come to the aid of Ra1! So black can take Ra1 without fear of being taken back!! Now the continuation for white is not clear to me.

21 Nc3 Nxa1 22 Ne4 Qxb2 23 Qxa7 Nc2 24 a4 Nd4!

The a-pawn is going no where, but black is threatening to marshal the rook and king into a very tight corner. So perhaps white will try a simple pawn march!

21 b4 Qxa1

<21 Qxa7 Nxa1>
<23 b4 Nc2>
<24 b5 Nd4!>
<25 a4 Ne2+>
<26 Kh1 Qh5!>

Time to check...


I looked at Ng3, but discarded it. I wonder if my line holds water?!

Premium Chessgames Member
  paulalbert: Had the right ideas, but totally missed the right move order and focused too much on Ne3 instead of Ng3. To get Sunday right requires much more calculating vision and precision than I'll ever have.
Apr-15-12  cyclon: < rilkefan: I'm looking (with a board, sadly) at 17...Nxd3 18.cxd3 Ng3 19.Be3 Nxf1 20.Kxf1 > and here Black plays simply 20. -Qxb2 winning the Rook whether White exchanges Queen or not having an easily winning game.
Premium Chessgames Member
  scormus: I know I should'nt have have questioned the level of difficulty yesterday.

I searched in vain for a win with 17 ... Nd3 18 cxd3 Rxc1 19 Rxc1 and thought ... Nd4 seemed the best bet. I'm still not sure if that is good enough or what W's best move is, maybe 20 Nc3. B can win back the exchange but is there something better? If there is I cannot find it.

Well done <Segal> for finding this combination and well done to those who got the 18 ... Ng3 line today

Apr-15-12  Patriot: Black is down 2 pawns.

White threatens 18.Qxb4.

17...Nxd3 18.cxd3 Rxc1 19.Rxc1

Here I thought about 19...Qxb2 20.Qxb2 Bxb2, but 21.Nd2 puts a damper on trying to win anything significant. 19...Nd6 looks interesting and 20.Qxa7 Qxb2 21.Nd2 Qb4 22.Nb3 Bxa1 23.Rxa1. But I think 19...Nd4 is best, with a serious double-threat of 20...Qxf2+ and mate next or 20...Ne2+ winning a piece.

19...Nd4 20.Rf1 Nc2

Apr-15-12  Patriot: In my second line, I had a retained image error thinking there was a pawn on c2 and that 21.Nd2 was safe (simply 21...Qxd2). But 21.Nc3 is.

I didn't consider after 19...Nd4 20.Nc3! Qxf2+ 21.Kh1 etc., which Houdini says is about +1.00. But I did consider the main line, 18...Ng3 19.hxg3 and tossed it out for whatever reason.

Apr-15-12  James D Flynn: I first looked at 17…..Nxd3 18.cxd3 Rxc1 19.Rxc1 Qxb2 but 20.Qxb2 Bxb2 21.Nc3 holds. I then looked at 18……Nd4 threatening both Nc2 and Ne2+ but again Nc3 holds. I finally found 18....Rxc1 19.Rxc1 Ng3 which wins: A.20.fxg3 Qf2+ 21.Kh1 Qf1+ 22.Rxf1 Rxf1#
B.20.hxg3 Qxf2+ 21.Kh1 Qxg3 and White has no defense to the threat of Be4 followed by mate on h2 if instead 21.Kh2 Be4 and White has no defense to the threat of Qxg3+ followed by mate on h2. C. 20.Qf3 Qxb2 and both rooks and the Q are attacked. D. 20.f3(or f4) Ne2+ 21.Kh1 Nxc1 and Black is a piece up.

Now for the game.

Apr-15-12  James D Flynn: In the game after 22.Qe7 Be4 is a much quicker win: 23.Qxf8+ Kxf8 24.Rc8+ Kg7 25.Rc7+ Kh3 and White threatens mate on both h2 and e1, there is no answer.
Apr-15-12  mikmik777: March 15, 2012

Black to play: 17. ...?
Huebner vs A S Segal

White is ahead in material (2 pawns) but his queenside is literally undeveloped. Also, Black's influence over the ‘c’ and ‘f’ files is pretty noticeable. If only Black can pry open these files, it’s doomsday for Black. My move then is…

17. ...Nxd3 [Opening the c-file]

18.cxd3 Ng3 [Opening the f-file] (19.Bg5 Ne2+ 20.Kh1 Qxg5)

19.hxg3 Rxc1 (19.fxg3 Qxf1#)

20.Qxa7 [Guarding the f2 pawn]

20. …Rxf1+

21.Kxf1 Qxb2

White's rook on a1 is just lost.

Time to check.

I absolutely forgot that the h-pawn took a knight on move 19. Now the back rank mate wouldn’t work. Insane endgame!

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: Black has a bishop and a knight for the bishop pair and two pawns.

White threatens Qxa7.

The semi-open f-file suggests 17... Nxd3 18.cxd3 Rxc1 19.Rxc1 Ng3, with the double threat Qxf2+ and Ne2+:

A) 20.Qf3 Qxf3 21.gxf3 Ne2+ 22.Kf1 Nxc1 - + [B vs 2P].

B) 20.f3 Qd4#.

C) 20.fxg3 Qf2+ 21.Kh1 Qf1+ 22.Rxf1 Rxf1#.

D) 20.hxg3 Qxf2+

D.1) 21.Kh1 Qe3 22.Rc4 (22.Qc6 Qh6+ 23.Kg1 Bd4#) 22... Rf1+ 23.Kh2 Qg1+ 24.Kh3 Qh1+ 25.Kg4 Qh5#.

D.2) 21.Kh2 Bd4 with a mate attack (22.Qf3 Rxf3).

E) 20.Rf1 Nxf1 with the double threat Qxf2+ and Qxb2.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: I missed the possibility 22.Qxg7+ Kxg7 23.Nc3 Qxd3 in my line D.1 but the ending looks lost for White anyway.
Apr-15-12  sevenseaman: Are we always on the look out for a tactical shot. If you think yes, you may have to check again.

Here we have a position (I do not know the opening) where every piece is still on the board.

click for larger view

Black to play.

How many of us can claim to see a tactical possibility. In a matter of mere 4 moves he goes a piece up.

Can you see how? (It could be enough to win you the game).

Take your time; I spent 20 minutes staring at it before I saw the light and the end of the tunnel. (But then I am naturally a bit slow)

Apr-15-12  Limpin Kt: <sevenseaman> Er, is it 1...Nf3 2.Bf3 Bb2 3.Rb2 Qf6 fork?
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: I considered the line Segal played, but not his quiet follow-up 21...Qxg3!
Apr-15-12  dragon player: Quite a messy position, but it's sunday, so that's logical. I've got only one plan:

18.cxd3 Rxc1
19.Rxc1 Ne3

Now the threat is Qxf2+.

20.Qf3 Qxb2
21.Qxe3 Bd4

which looks nice. But there are other defences:

20.f3 Qd4

threathening a smothered mate.

Time to check, I'm not interessed in looking for more defences.


I'm a little bit right. Lets say quarter of a point.


Apr-15-12  dzechiel: Black to move (17...?). White is up two pawns. "Insane."

This sure looks like it should start

17...Nxd3 18 cxd3 Rxc1 19 Rxc1

and now I don't know whether I should move the remaining knight off of f6 or play 19...Qxb2.

I wish I had more time today. Time to check.

Premium Chessgames Member
  WinKing: The first move seemed to present itself. Take black's most distant piece & capture one of white's only active pieces. The rest is not so easy.

18.cxd3 Ng3! <(19.fxd3 Qxf1# ; the rook on 'f1' can't move or ...Qxf2# ; if 19.Qf3 Qxf3 20.gxf3 Ne2+ 21.Kg2 Nxc1 looks to be winning)>

19.hxg3 Rxc1
20.Rxc1 Qxf2+
21.Kh1 Qxg3 <(threatening mate starting with ...Qh4+)>

22.Qe4 Be5 <(threatens mate on 'h2' so white has to play 23.Qxe5 Qxe5 & black should be winning)>

click for larger view

I don't know...let's look.

Premium Chessgames Member
  WinKing: Rats! I missed white's best defense 22.Qe7. This would have prevented 22...Qh5+ & 22...Be5 both. If 22...Be5 23.Qxe6+ Kg7 24.Qh3 & it is white who is winning. Well I'd give myself .25 of a point for at least finding the right idea. Failing to find a follow up that is winning is a major deduction..
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: 21...Qe3! (mentioned by many) looks like a clear improvement to the text.

click for larger view

The additional threats it poses compared to the text move are two-fold; 22...Qh6+, then 23...Bd4# is the first threat and 22...Qxc1+ is the second.

White can't protect himself against these threats so he must give up the queen with 22 Qxg7+. After 22... Kxg7 here is the position.

click for larger view

Black again has two threats, 23...Qxc1+, or 23...Qxg3, followed by 24...Rf2.

White has to play 23 Nc3, after white will pick up the d pawn and g3 pawns.

Apr-15-12  sevenseaman: <Limpin Kt> You hit the nail on its head. Good, no one else has bothered with it. I thought it was very instructive. (A penny for my thoughts, hun)!
Apr-18-12  LoveThatJoker: Sunday, April 15th, 2012

For the purposes of playing for a direct win, this seemed like the best try

17...Nxd3 18. cxd3 Nd6 19. Qxa7 [19. Qf3 Rxc1 20. Rxc1 (20. Qxf6? Rxf1+ 21. Kxf1 Bxf6 and Black emerges a piece up) 20...Qxb2 and Black will emerge at least a piece up] 19...Rxc1 20. Rxc1 Qxb2 but 21. Nc3! seems to actually leave White slightly better as 21...Bxc3 22. Rab1 and although Black looks to have an attack, White's defenses seem firm enough.

Therefore, I'm going with the equalizing 17...Nxd3 18. cxd3 Rxc1 19. Rxc1 Qxb2 20. Qxb2 Bxb2 21. Nd2 Bxa1 22. Rxa1 Rd8 with an equal-ish position (although Black still has the e6 weakness, yet it is better than being two pawns down as per the start of the puzzle!)


Apr-10-17  Marcelo Bruno: Beautiful game by Segal!
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Black's eighteenth move is straight out of the <'where the hell did <that> come from?> section in works on combination.

Nice work also by <Jim> as so often on pointing out an improvement on the winner's play, elegant though the quiet move actually played was.

Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: Soarin' seagull, what a combination!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Messiah: 'The Secret Is Not To Check, But To Mate.'
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