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Thomas Reich vs Alexander Kabatianski
Bundesliga (2008/09), Various GER, rd 8, Dec-13
Queen's Gambit Declined: Exchange Variation (D35)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Aug-04-10  Ferro: Puedo derrotar a las torres
Aug-04-10  Patriot: White is up in material, 2 bishops for a rook, in this otherwise symmetrical position.

My thought process went something like this:


Looking at checks first...

55.Bxg6+ hxg6 56.h6 Kg8 and black wins.

55.hxg6+ is pointless.

Next is the common bishop sacrifice...

55.Ba6 bxa6 56.b7 (rook moves) 57.b8/Q Rxb8 58.Bxb8 and white wins.

There doesn't seem to be anything else worth investigating so 55.Ba6 it is.


<<TheaN> <I'd like to note that the variation 55.Ba6 Rc6!? 56.Bc7! is pretty vital for this puzzle. If you didn't got that, you can't say it's solved. Well, that or 56.Bd4. Otherwise both b-pawns fall, giving White nothing to work with.>>

You make a good point, but 55...Rc6 is not something I would fear in a position like this. With both bishops, there's no way black is going to freely take on b6. On another note, 55.Ba6 is the only direct attempt to win and it cannot be refuted by any forcing move so it's like a free move. I would play it OTB without hesitation. In a sense, I knew 55...Rc6 was not a problem because of the two bishops so I didn't feel it necessary to calculate it. But everyone's approach may be different.

<<C4gambit>: I tried 55.Bxg6 hxg, 56.h6 and try to get it to the 8th rank. I am not sure if this line works, but definitely Ba6 is best. Point to note... when i think i got a move, i should look for a better one.>

The line definitely does not work because of 56...Kg8. You make a good point about looking for a better move. One thing I look for in my opponent's move is a simple way to refute my move. Because if you can find only one move that refutes it, then the move is likely not best and no more time should be spent on it.

Aug-04-10  zanshin: <Check It Out: I initially looked at 55. Bxg6 hxg6 56. h6 but that just fails to 56...Kg8>

<CIO> That's what I looked at too.

<RandomVisitor: looks like 55.hxg6+ is also a solution.>

In my Rybka 4 run, even when 55.hxg6+ was played first, Ba6 was still the key move.

[+6.45] d=23 55.hxg6 hxg6 56.Ba6 bxa6 57.b7 Re8 58.b8Q Rxb8 59.Bxb8 Ke7 60.Ke2 a5 61.Kd3 Kd7 62.Kd4 a4 63.Kc3 a3 64.Kb3 a2 65.Kxa2 Kc6 66.Kb3 Kb7 67.Be5 Kc6 68.Kb4 Kb6 69.Bd4 Kc6 70.Bf6 (0:04:01) 41157kN

[+6.45] d=23 55.Ba6 bxa6 56.b7 Rd8 57.hxg6 hxg6 58.b8Q Rxb8 59.Bxb8 Ke7 60.Ke2 a5 61.Kd3 Kd7 62.Kd4 a4 63.Kc3 a3 64.Kb3 a2 65.Kxa2 Kc6 66.Kb3 Kb7 67.Be5 Kc6 68.Kb4 Kb6 69.Bd4 Kc6 70.Bf6 (0:04:26) 44265kN

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: The bishops and pawn take helpless rook to task.
Premium Chessgames Member
  sleepyirv: White is better with two pawn islands to three, and a slight material advantage of bishops vs. a rook. After looking for a break on the kingside, I thought about getting the b pawn. I was working out how to get the king there until noticing it's impossible! But the light-square bishop can pick it up with Black being unable to defend it with his rook. White will end up a bishop up after the b pawn queens.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: The strtegic value of hxg6+ early in the winning sequence ensures three connected pawns and less ground to cover (no material on the h file).
Aug-04-10  kramputz: <Aug-04-10 Ferro: Puedo derrotar a las torres> .......For "spinach" press #2 ....../
Aug-04-10  zooter: Bxg6 is obvious as hxg6 leads to h6 with a win while rejecting the sac leads to a loss any ways since the king side passed pawns are too much And btw you have to notice that black cannot sneak his rook behind the h pawn through checks
Aug-04-10  zooter: missed it:-)
Premium Chessgames Member
  ZUGZWANG67: W has 2 B's against the BR. Having found out that no play leads to a forced win against the BK, one must turn to the b6/b7-pawns and BR complex on the Q-side. Both bishops control key squares: c2, c3, c4, c7, b2 (crucial!), b5 (so it is!), b8 (!), and a6 (!?). And importantly, W can control b6 as well.

Then the obvious 55.Ba6 comes to mind, when 1...bxa6 56.b7 seals the deal. B has other alternatives on move 55, though they are unsufficient. Thus, 55...Rc2+ 56.Kf3 with no follow up: W controls b2; or 55...Rc6 56.Bc7 Ke7 ( 56...bxa6 3.b7) 57.Bxb7 with tempo, as W will soon control b7 and b8 (even c8(!): 57...Rxc7!? 58.bxc7 and 59.c8Q); 55...Rc1 56.Bxb7 Rb1 57.Bc7, followed by 58.Bc8; 55...Ke7 56.Bxb7 Rc1 57.Bc7 Bc6, blocking the BK again and gaining control of b7; 55...Rc5 56.Bxb7 Rb5 57.Bc8.

I think this is it. Time to check.



Premium Chessgames Member
  ZUGZWANG67: < TheaN: < I'd like to note that the variation 55.Ba6 Rc6!? 56.Bc7! is pretty vital for this puzzle. If you didn't got that, you can't say it's solved. >>

I agree with you. One had to see that the pawn could be defended and also, that a barrier could have been settled against the BK in some lines with a move like Bc8 (after Bxb7). For example in case of ...Ke7-d7.

There's also a point worth thinking about when entering an endgame with such imbalance in material as, say, 2 Rs vs a Q, or a R vs 2 minors. That point is that the side with the minority in term of chessmen can't trade (pieces), as opposed to the side with the majority.

Aug-04-10  turbo231: I missed monday and tuesday but i got todays puzzle i don't know why°°°
Aug-04-10  njchess: 55. Ba6 is the quickest way to a win for White since the bishop on a6 is immune from capture (e.g. 55. Ba6 Rc6 56. Bc7 bxa6 57. b7 and Black's rook cannot prevent promotion). There are probably other ways to win since White has the bishop pair, but Ba6 is a killer move. I suspect Black resigned on the spot. Time to check.
Aug-04-10  wals: 17...Rfc8. +1.16,reflecting the difference between Black's Rook and White's Bishop & Knight.

The status quo is more or less maintained until move 41,then a blunder by Black.

41...Ra2. +3.97. Better, Rd1 +1.65.

42.g4. +2.50 was not White's best move, even if adequate. Be5+, Bg7, both +3.97, or Bc3, +3.23
were better.

Not to be outdone however, Black prefering dishonour before death, played,

42...Rh2. +4.39. Ra3, Ra5, Ra8,
all +2.52 could have been played.

White joined the party and made its blunder,
43.Kg3.+2.72 Better, Be5+, +4.39.
Continuing to play silly buggers, White played,
44.Be2.+2.05. Better, Be5+, +2.72.

Black, determined to give the game away, fell on it's sword with, 54...Rc8. +5.12.

White played
55.Ba6. +5.09. ( hxg6+ was as good) and accepted Black's triumphant loss.

courtesy of Rybka 3 1-cpu.

Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: I spent a full minute mesmerized by g6 and then managed to look at the Queen side.
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: <JohnBoy>: Thanks. Your answers aren't very different from mine.
Aug-04-10  Schach and Awe: I felt starting a pawn roll, beginning with e4, ultimately allowing the Light Squared Bishop to reach e4 and attack the indefensible pawn at b7 was a feasible approach.

I have to admit I completely missed Ba6, which accomplishes essentially the same thing, but with a pretty sac.

Premium Chessgames Member
  LIFE Master AJ: I did it a litle differently.

55.hxg6+, hxg6; 56.Bc7! to be followed by Ba6. (Black is helpless, NO COUNTERPLAY!!!)

Premium Chessgames Member
  LIFE Master AJ: I also looked at 55.hxg6+, hxg6; then 56.Ba6.
Premium Chessgames Member
  LIFE Master AJ: In a way, this one was too easy. With 2 Bishops for a Rook, White is sure to win. Maybe his exact method of implementation does not matter.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: For yesterday's Wednesday puzzle solution, the sham sacrifice of the Bishop with 55. Ba6! makes for a winning passed pawn combination.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: <LIFE Master AJ: I did it a litle differently. 55.hxg6+, hxg6; 56.Bc7! to be followed by Ba6.>

I considered this line. I was put off it because black can slow white down by playing 56... Ra8 to prevent Ba6.

Now white has to find another way of targetting the pawn on b7 - eg through pushing the e4 pawn and then putting his LSB on the long diagonal. Black has also given himself the option of rook checks along the a file, or of making mischief with the pawn sac g5 to double and isolate white's f and g pawns.

White probably still wins after Bc7. As you say, black has no counterplay. But I don't think it is as clean a kill as the immediate Ba6, with or without hg thrown in first.

Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: Looking at this again, I think most any move wins for White here. 55. e4 is clearly winning. As easy as it is to say "Ba7 leads to Queening the Pawn", I don't think this resultant position 6 moves later is a quick knockout: 55. Ba7 bxa7 56. b7 Rg8 57. b8Q Rxb8 58. Bxb8 Kg7 59. hxg6 hxg6 60. Bc7 Kf6 I guess 55. Ba7 does lead to the most obvious win, but if Black made you play it out, it probably isn't the quickest path to mate.

click for larger view

Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: As one example, 55. e4 Rc6 56. hxg6+ hxg6 57. Bc7 and Black can make some pointless moves with his Rook, but I bet it's a quicker path to mate than my last post.

click for larger view

Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: I see that <scormus> and <benveniste> also noticed that the mundane e4 is good enough.
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