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Alexander Morozevich vs Konstantin Rufovich Sakaev
"A Rose is a Rose is Moroze" (game of the day Mar-19-2009)
Russian Championship Superfinal (2007), Moscow RUS, rd 5, Dec-23
Slav Defense: General (D10)  ·  1-0



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find similar games 2 more Morozevich/Sakaev games
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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Dec-23-07  Akavall: Morozevich could've won on move 51

click for larger view

with 51. Rg3!!

White is threatening to play Nxh5 and if black plays gxh5, black is lost after Nf7!

If 51...h4 52. Rh3 Bh7 53. Nf7+ Kg8 54. Nh6+ Rh8 55. Rxh4

click for larger view

and black doesn't have any defense against 56. Nf7+ followed by 57. Nxg6, after which black is lost.

Dec-23-07  clocked: How often do you see the b2 pawn defended by the rook on h2 in the opening?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: Some typically unconventional chess by Moro... it seems that Sakaev missed <44...Nfxd4>, where Black is holding after 45.Kg2 Qxb4! 46.Nxg6+ Kg7 47.Qf2 Nf5 48.Nf4 Ncd4.

Another missed opportunity by Black was <47...Rg7> 48.e6 Rd6, where 49.Nxd5 Qd8 doesn't work for White. This idea is no longer good a move later: 48...Rg7 49.Nxd5 Rd6 50.Nf6 Qe7 51.Nxh5! gxh5 52.Rxh5+ Bh7 53.d5 Kg8 54.Nxh7 Rxh7 55.Qg3+ Rg7 (55...Kh8 56. Rxh7+ Kxh7 57.Rc1) 56.Qh2 Rxe6 57.dxe6 Qxe6 58.Rh8+ Kf7 59.Qh5+ Q/Rg6 60.Rxf5+.

In the final position:

click for larger view

Black resigns because his position is utterly hopeless after 59...Rg7 (the only way to avoid an immediate mate) 60.Nxg7 Kxg7 61.Qe5+ Kg8 (61... Kh6 62.Qf6 Bg8 63.Rg3 [with the threat of Qh8+ and mate] 63...Bh7 64.Ne6 and mate on g7 or g5) 62.Qf6 and Black has no adequate defence against Re6-d6-d8.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: Overall, it seems that Sakaev played too passively. It's interesting to compare this game with another one - not included in database - which it followed until 9...e6, and which contained some similar ideas, but where Black played more actively and gained (more than) sufficient counterplay:

Gustafsson J. (2611) - Mastrovasilis D. (2568)
Aghia Pelagia GRE, 2004

10.Bd3 Be7 11.Nge2 Rc8 12.Kf2 Na5 13.h4 b5 14.b3 Ba3 15.Rc2 Nc6 16.Nb1 Be7 17.a3 O-O 18.h5 Ne8 19.Qg1 f6 20.Qg3

click for larger view

20...e5! 21.dxe5 fxe5 22.Bxe5 Nxe5 (stronger was 22...Bh4!) 23.Qxe5 Rxc2 24.Bxc2 Bxg4 25.Nf4 Nf6 26.h6 Bd6 27.Bxh7+ Kxh7 28.hxg7+ Kxg7 29.Qg5+ Kf7 30.Qg6+ Ke7 31.fxg4 Qc8! 32.g5? (allowing the next move with a crucial gain of tempo for Black) Ne4+ 33.Kf3 Kd8! (now Black has defended successfully against White's threats, whereas White is helpless against Qc2) 34.Qg7 Qc2 35.Rf1 Rxf4+! 36.exf4 Qd3+ 0-1

Dec-24-07  Ulhumbrus: Instead of 14...Be8, 14...Na5 prepares both ...Nc4 and ...Bd6 attacking the weakened black squares on White's King side.
Dec-25-07  Alphastar: Damn great game :)
Dec-25-07  sanyas: This is a modern masterpiece.
Aug-18-08  notyetagm: <sanyas: This is a modern masterpiece.>


This game may win Moro his first Chess Informant Best Game prize when they make the next announcement.

Aug-18-08  notyetagm: Position after 40 b3-b4

click for larger view

Now _THAT_ is what I call a <SPACE ADVANTAGE>.

Aug-18-08  notyetagm: This is really a @#$%ing stupendous game by Morozevich.
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: Beautiful! Morozevich really channeled the spirit of Alekhine in this one.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Great game, but today's surprisingly erudite pun eluded me.

I thought first of Shakespeare. "What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet" (or something like that) from Romeo and Juliet.

Then we have the musical Singin' in the Rain and a marvellous song with the line "Moses supposes his toses are roses". I seem to recall that the chorus includes the phrase "a rose is a rose", but not alas the full threefold repetition that we need to solve today's puzzle.

In the end, I gave in and looked up the answer on Wikipedia:

The sentence "Rose is a rose is a rose is a rose." was written by Gertrude Stein as part of the 1913 poem Sacred Emily, which appeared in the 1922 book Geography and Plays. In that poem, the first "Rose" is the name of a person. Stein later used variations on the sentence in other writings, and "A rose is a rose is a rose" is probably her most famous quote, often interpreted as meaning "things are what they are," a statement of the law of identity, "A is A". In Stein's view, the sentence expresses the fact that simply using the name of a thing already invokes the imagery and emotions associated with it. As the quote diffused through her own writing, and the culture at large, Stein once remarked "Now listen! Iím no fool. I know that in daily life we donít go around saying 'is a Ö is a Ö is a Ö' Yes, Iím no fool; but I think that in that line the rose is red for the first time in English poetry for a hundred years."

Mar-19-09  LimSJ: wow! this closed game looks like a boa constrictor's moves: slow and deadly for sure. Black's QBishop was constricted by its pawns. white's knights had a field day after the beautiful breakthrough 43. f5 to the Kingside attack (and at same time as a effective pawn blocks). too bad Black never got action along the C-file.
Mar-19-09  Samagonka: I was'nt that much impressed by white's openning but I really like the way he finished his game.

Mar-19-09  hedgeh0g: Only GMs are allowed to play like this...
Premium Chessgames Member
  playground player: *Sigh* When I try an attack like that, I run out of men.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: This game reminds me of the Ali-Foreman fight in Zaire (now the Congo-again). Foreman cut off Ali,pushed him to the ropes and pummelled him until he exhaused himself and was easily knocked out by the "greatest".-oops,bad example-lol

Seriously,white dominated space and pushed his opponent beyond the limit,and crushed him.

Mar-19-09  Pawnage: <playground player> Same here... It looked to me like an attack doomed to fail, until the end.
Mar-19-09  Absentee: The puns are getting abysmal.
Mar-19-09  wolfmaster: <Absentee> Are getting? They've been abysmally abysmal for a year. A jackal could pick better puns. The chessgames users have some very nice ones, it's a pity they're not put in on the game.
Mar-19-09  WhiteRook48: this is a stupid pun
Mar-19-09  Absentee: <Are getting? They've been abysmally abysmal for a year.>

You have a point. "Fruit Lupi" was probably the worst. Reminded me of Liberace. Well, at least Lupi is dead and can't sue CG. Today's game is awesome, though.

Mar-19-09  hellopolgar: moro sometimes can demolish 2500~2700 players just like that. it must be so frustrating to play against moro, games like that probably give his opponents cancer.

the only way out is to hope that moro presses so hard that he blunders.

Dec-25-09  notyetagm: Finished 3rd in the voting for 2007 Game Of The Year at

Apr-22-10  hellopolgar: wow, moro slowly constricted a 2670 GM to was a slow and painful one...
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