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Robert Fontaine vs Maxime Vachier-Lagrave
"Lagrave Undertaking" (game of the day Apr-06-2010)
French Championship (2007), Aix-les-Bains FRA, rd 10, Aug-23
Dutch Defense: Leningrad. Matulovic Variation (A89)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: An amazing game!
Oct-28-12  erniecohen: Quite a game. But White really shouldn't have fallen for the b5 Trojan horse; 30. ♕c6, maintaining the threat to take the c7 pawn with check, seems to draw.
Jan-04-13  xeneizexxx: I believe that the black dark square bishop is more important than the rook in the leningrad, at least it confuses your opponent and gives you more winning chances.
Mar-30-13  fisayo123: Still one of my favorite games of the modern era. A true "Immortal".
Jul-23-13  EvilTwin: did you read formation attacks, that's a classic Trojan pawn
Premium Chessgames Member
  Garech: Superb game indeed!


Sep-29-13  Ed Frank: I don't think I've ever seen a rook sac, a queen sac, an attempted knight sac, and an underpromotion leading to a mate in one in the same game. All players should aspire to games of this elegance.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: I have video annotated this "Immortal" game here:

Cheers, K

Oct-28-13  DcGentle: Nice video, <kingscrusher>.

White could have escaped into perpetual check playing <34. Kf1>.

But otherwise a dream of a game. :-)

Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: <DcGentle> If 34 Kf1, then isn't Bh3 checkmate ?!
Oct-29-13  Juninho: <kingscrusher>

not really, because Bg2 prevent it.
But it looks interesting to play Rh2 as 35. Bg2, Rxg2! 36.Qc4 looks a draw for me.

For example:
Rg5 37. d6, Kg7, 38. Qd4, (black couldn't play Kh6 as Qh8#), Kh7 etc. looks enough to hold.

Oct-29-13  DcGentle: <kingscrusher>:

Position before move 34:

click for larger view

White to move.

<Juninho> is right, there is no checkmate because bishop f3 can be interposed on g2.

Here there is a PGN-text for you to copy and paste into your chess GUI:

[Event "Some variants not played"]
[Site "Aix-les-Bains FRA"]
[Date "2007.08.23"]
[Round "10"]
[White "Robert Fontaine"]
[Black "Maxime Vachier-Lagrave"]
[Result "*"]
[ECO "A89"]
[WhiteElo "2567"]
[BlackElo "2595"]
[Annotator "DcGentle"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "7r/p1p2k2/6p1/1Q1P1b2/8/1P3B2/P3PpK1/6b1 w - - 0 34"]

34. Kf1 {<escaping into perpetual check.>} Rh2 {<threatening a mate in 2: 35... Bh3+ 36. Bg2 Bxg2#>} 35. Bg2 Rxg2 {<The rook must not be taken.>} 36. Qb7 {<Other queen moves attacking c7 will also do.>}

(36. Kxg2 Bh3+ {<is a mate in 8:>} 37. Kxh3 f1=Q+ 38. Kg3 Qf2+ 39. Kh3 Qh2+ 40. Kg4 Qg2+ 41. Kf4 g5+ 42. Ke5 Qg3+ 43. Ke4 Qe3+ 44. Kf5 Qf4#)

36... Rg4 37. Qxc7+ Ke8 38. Qb8+ Kd7 39. Qxa7+ Kd6 40. Qb8+ Kxd5 41. Qb5+ {<and the black king has no hideout.>} *


Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: Oh of course bg2 - oops my bad ...
Nov-19-13  Billy Vaughan: <playground player: C'mon, CG--show us a game in which underpromotion doesn't win! In which, in fact, it blows up in the underpromoter's face. Just so we don't get the impression that it always, always works.>

Well, there's this: Mamedyarov vs J Smeets, 2005

Jan-02-14  jaga1131: I think it should be16.gh4 instead of Qg5
Apr-05-15  SpiritedReposte: That's definitely a unique mating combination.

Like playing against a computer you think you got it and it pulls some crazy $#!+ like that. Just wow.

Apr-05-15  SpiritedReposte: Unique mating combination.
Oct-22-15  The Kings Domain: Pretty brilliant game by Vachier-Lagrave. His queen sacrifice turned the table in his favor leading to a good positional attack on white's king.
Jan-30-16  Conrad93: Wow, this reminds of the famous Polish Immortal, except for the fact it's 10x more amazing.
Nov-18-16  Saniyat24: White could have played 22.Be4 instead of Nf5
Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: French Immortal.
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: I must be going senile. Playing it over, I thought I had never seen it (even though the pun sounded familiar). But now I see that I commented on it six years ago. How could I forget such a game?
Jan-29-18  BoardCrusher92: Great game by Maxime!
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: This game proves that MVL is in a class by himself but he's having a hard time making it to the top. It's true that it's much easier to display brilliance when you're not playing one of other top players, but when has Carlsen ever played such an amazing game? It almost outclasses Tal.
May-18-18  Shadow4523: So stubborn this style I don't know whether he is gonna play like this in top level
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