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Alexey Shirov vs Hao Wang
Russian Team Championship (2009), Dagomys RUS, rd 2, Apr-05
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation. Poisoned Pawn Accepted (B97)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Apr-13-09  notyetagm:
Apr-13-09  notyetagm: < Eyal: In fact, Sjugirov's <22.Bf6> may have been more accurate than Shirov's <22.Qf4>:>


[Event "St Petersburg FINEC GM-A"]
[Site "St Petersburg"]
[Date "2008.01.24"]
[Round "5"]
[White "Sjugirov,Sanan"]
[Black "Brodsky,Michail"]

Apr-13-09  notyetagm: All in one place.

[Event "St Petersburg FINEC GM-A"]
[Site "St Petersburg"]
[Date "2008.01.24"]
[Round "5"]
[White "Sjugirov,Sanan"]
[Black "Brodsky,Michail"]
[Result "1-0"]
[Eco "B97"]
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 Nf6 4.Nc3 cxd4 5.Nxd4 a6 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Qb6 8.Qd2 Qxb2 9.Rb1 Qa3 10.e5 dxe5 11.fxe5 Nfd7 12.Ne4 h6 13.Bh4 Qxa2 14.Rd1 Qd5 15.Qe3 Bc5 16.Nxe6 Bb4+ 17.c3 Qxe6 18.cxb4 0-0 19.Rd6 Qxe5 20.Bc4 Nc6 21.0-0 Qh5 22.Bf6 Nxf6 23.Nxf6+ gxf6 24.Rfxf6 Ne5 25.Rxh6 Nxc4 26.Qe7 1-0


<and in Sjugirov-Brodsky, St Petersburg FINEK 2008 Black resigned. After 26...Qe5 , 27.Rdg6+ wins.>

Jul-20-14  refutor: <<sergeyvicherik> LOL, Wang Hao must have forgotten who was his opponent!!>

always a pleasure when that happens :)

Aug-04-14  Ke2: <Philidor: A beautiful and desicive sac, hidden for the mediocre mind. Shirov is still shining, from time to time.>

Gimme a break. The combination is beautiful and all that, but any strong player examines all checks and captures, especially when it isn't a position with a million things hanging.

Especially with the idea of the Nf6 fork hanging in the air, any say 2000+ would have found this.

The real strength is in the initiative and development, and presumably spotting this sequence on around move 16 - 19.

Oct-05-22  Brenin: 23 Rxh6 Qxh6 (23 ... gxf6 24 Nf6+ wins the Q) 24 Nf6+ Kh8 (24 ... gxf6 25 Qxh6 wins the Q) 25 Bg5 and the Q is trapped, e.g. 25 ... Ng6 26 Qg3 Qxg5 27 Qxg5 gxf6 28 Qh6+Kg8 29 Qxg6+ Kh8 30 Qxf6+ Kh7 31 Rf4 with mate to follow.
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: 23. Rxh6 Qg4 24. Nf6+ gxf6 25. Bxf6 Ng6 26. Rh8+ Nxh8 27. Qh6.
Oct-05-22  Brenin: <al wazir: 23. Rxh6 Qg4 24. Nf6+ gxf6 25. Bxf6> There is more to come: 25 ... Ng6 26 Rxg6+ Qxg6 27 Qh4 with mate in a few moves, e.g. 27 ... Qh7 28 Qg5+ Qg6 29 Qxg6 mate. The pin on the P on f7 is devastating.
Oct-05-22  Brenin: Perhaps Black's best defence is 23 Rxh6 Qxh6 24 Nf6+ Kh8 25 Bg5 Qh7 26 Nxh7 Kxh7 27 Qh4+ Kg8 28 Bf6 gxf6 29 Qxf6 Be6 (not 29 ... Nxc4 30 Qg5+ and 31 Rf4 with mate), but now 30 Qg5+ and 31 Rf6 looks nasty.
Oct-05-22  jrredfield: I saw 23 Rxh6 in a few seconds. The next question was whether Black would capture with the g pawn or with the Q. Capturing with the pawn leads to a mate in 8 for White due due to the Knight fork of the K & Q:

24.♘f6+ ♔h8 25.♘xh5 ♘g4 26.♗xf7 ♔h7 27.♕e4+ ♗f5 28.♕xf5+ ♔h8 29.♗f6+ ♘xf6 30.♕xf6+ ♔h7 31.♕g7+

Komodo Dragon searching to a depth of 42 sees this continuation:

White +8.86: 23.♖xh6 ♕xh6 24.♘f6+ ♔h8 25.♗g5 ♕h7 26.♘xh7 ♔xh7 27.♕h4+ ♔g8 28.♗f6 gxf6 29.♕xf6 ♗e6 30.♕g5+ ♔h7 31.♖f6 ♘g6 32.♗xe6 ♘ce5 33.♗f5 ♔g7 34.h4 ♖h8 35.♖d6 ♖af8 36.♗xg6 ♘xg6 37.h5 ♖xh5 38.♕xh5 ♖e8 39.♕g5 ♖e1+ 40.♔h2 ♖f1 41.♖xg6+ fxg6 42.♕e5+ ♔f7 43.♕c7+ ♔f6 44.♕b6+ ♔g5 45.♕xb7 ♖f5 46.♕e7+ ♔h5 47.♕e4 ♔g5 48.♕e3+ ♔g4 49.♕g3+ ♔h5

Clearly there is a long road to mate, but Black saw the hopelessness of the position then and there.

Oct-05-22  mel gibson: I got this one wrong today.
I thought 23. Nf6+ but that is about even according to SF.

Stockfish 15 says:

23. Rxh6

(23. Rxh6 (♖d6xh6 ♕h5xh6 ♘e4-f6+ ♔g8-h8 ♗h4-g5 ♕h6-h7 ♘f6xh7 ♔h8xh7 ♕f4-h4+ ♔h7-g8 ♗g5-f6 g7xf6 ♕h4xf6 ♗c8-e6 ♕f6-g5+ ♘e5-g6 ♗c4xe6 ♘c6-e5 ♗e6-b3 ♖a8-c8 h2-h4 ♖c8-c3 ♗b3-d5 ♖c3-d3 ♗d5-e4 ♖d3-d6 h4-h5 ♔g8-g7 h5xg6 ♘e5xg6 ♕g5-g3 ♖f8-d8 ♕g3-c3+ ♔g7-g8 ♗e4-c2 ♖d6-c6 ♕c3-f3 ♖d8-f8 ♗c2-b3 ♘g6-h8 ♕f3-d5 ♔g8-g7 ♕d5-d4+ ♔g7-g8 ♕d4-d7 ♖c6-g6 ♕d7xb7 ♖g6-g3 ♖f1-f3 ♖g3xf3 ♕b7xf3 ♖f8-e8 ♕f3-f6 ♖e8-a8 ♕f6-b6 ♔g8-g7 ♕b6-b7 ♖a8-e8 ♕b7xa6 ♘h8-g6 b4-b5 ♖e8-e1+ ♔g1-f2 ♖e1-e4 ♕a6-a1+ f7-f6) +9.99/41 495)

score for White +9.99 depth 41.

Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: <Brenin: 23. Rxh6 Qg4 24. Nf6+ gxf6 25. Bxf6. There is more to come: 25 ... Ng6 26 Rxg6+ Qxg6 27 Qh4 with mate in a few moves, e.g. 27 ... Qh7 28 Qg5+ Qg6 29 Qxg6 mate.>

25. Rh8+ Kxh8 26. Qh6+ Kg8 27. Bxf6 is better. White mates on either g7 or h8.

Oct-05-22  mayankk06: This one was tough. Black is utterly helpless after 23 Rxh6 Qxh6 24 Nf6+ Kh8 25 Bg5 when it will either lose its Queen or leave the h file and get mated shortly.

The main themes here are
a) Nf6+ fork if 23 ... gxh6
b) 24 Nf6+ being immune to recpature by either the g pawn or the Queen after 23... Qxh6 c) Black running out of flight squares for both its Queen or King once White gets both Nf6 and Bg5 in place

Black could have fought a bit more after the exchange of Queen for Rook and Knight. But the demoralization after missing such a tactical manoeuvre is overwhelming.

Oct-05-22  saturn2: I did not solve it because I missed the queen trapping by Bg5
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: I wrought quandary muffle Rxh6 abridge livers it is ie arrived odd ace me Rxh6 efface
Oct-05-22  TheaN: This took me way too long, after spotting the first move almost instantly. To me, it was a bit vague throughout. Mainly after <23.Rxh6 Qxh6 24.Nf6+ Kh8>.

24....gxf6 25.Qxh6 +- obviously, 24....Qxf6?! might not be super trivial but the Black king side splits open after 25.Bxf6 gxf6 26.Qxf6 +-, where the threat of Qg5+ with Rf4 is killing.

After Kh8, White will have to see that <25.Bg5! +-> determines the game, given that after Qg6 26.Qh4+ is game, and otherwise the queen is trapped. Qh7 is best but White's calling all the shots.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Caissalove: More like an 'insane' puzzle I would have thought.
Oct-05-22  JohnBoy: Here is what got me stuck: 23.Rxh6 Qxh6 24.Nf6+ Qxf6 25.Bxf6 gf6 & how does white win this? Black can break the pin on f7 w -Be6 almost certainly at the cost of another pawn, but has a lot of material to confuse the white efforts.
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Doh Bg5 forehead.
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Muscle it in the fog :)
Oct-05-22  King.Arthur.Brazil: The King don't agree it is 'easy', since he spent much time to find 3. ♘f6+ gxf6 24. ♖xf6 ♘xc4 25. ♖xh6 ♕d5 26. ♗f6 with check-mate next, which is only delayed a little by Black's ♕ sacrifice. Am I right? NO!

Maybe the line is: 23...♕xh6 24. ♘f6+ (gxf6 ♕xh6) ♔h8 25. ♗g5 ♕g6 26. ♕h4+ win. Then, 25. ... ♘g6 26. ♕g3 ♕xg5 27. ♕xg5 gxf6 28. ♕xf6+ ♔h7 29. ♗xf7 and Black resigns.

Oct-05-22  King.Arthur.Brazil: Maybe, Black can survive, with the line: 23...♕xh6 24. ♘f6+ ♔h8 25. ♗g5 ♘g6 26. ♕g3 ♘ce5 27. ♗xh6 gxh6 28. ♕e3 ♔g7 although it is hard to see it, when on the board. Game drawn by perpetual check 29. ♘h5+ ♔h7 30. ♘f6+ ♔g7...?
Oct-05-22  alshatranji: It's not only the objective difficulty of the puzzle. But the "easy" mindset is hard to shake, pressing for quick, simple solutions.
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White has the bishop pair for a bishop, a knight and two pawns.

Black threatens Nxc4 and Qg4.

White can take advantage of the position of the black queen with 23.Rxh6:

A) 23... Qxh6 26.Nf6+

A.1) 26... Kh8 27.Bg5

A.1.a) 27... Qg6 28.Qh4+ Qh6 29.Bxh6 Ng6 (29... gxh6 30.Qxh6#; 29... gxf6 30.Bg5+ Kg8 31.Bxf6 Ng6 32.Qh6 and 33.Qg7#) 30.Bxg7+ Kxg7 31.Qh7#.

A.1.b) 27... Ng6 28.Qg3 (28.Qd6 Rd8) 28... Qxg5 29.Qxg5 gxf6 30.Qxf6+ Kh7 (30... Kg8 31.Qxg6+ Kh8 32.Rxf7 Rxf7 33.Bxf7 wins) 31.Bxf7 is winning.

A.1.c) 27... Qxg5 28.Qxg5 gxf6 29.Rxf6 Ng6 30.Qh6+ Kg8 31.Rxg6#.

A.2) 26... gxf6 27.Qxh6 Nxc4 28.Bxf6 and mate next.

A.3) 26... Qxf6 28.Bxf6 gxf6 (28... Nxc4 29.Qg5 g6 30.Qh6 and mate next; 28... Ng6 29.Qg5 gxf6 30.Qxg6+ as above) 29.Qg3+

A.3.a) 29... Bg4 30.Be2 f5 31.h3 looks winning.

A.3.b) 29... Ng6 30.Qxg6+ wins.

A.3.c) 29... Kh7 30.Rxf6 Ng6 (30... Nxc4 31.Qh4+ Kg8(7) 32.Qg5+ Kh7(8) 33.Rh6#) 31.Bxf7 wins.

B) 23... Ng6 24.Bxf7+ Rxf7 25.Qxf7#.

C) 23... Qg4 24.Nf6+ gxf6 25.Bxf6 Ng6 26.Rh8+ Nxh8 27.Qh6 Ng6 28.Qg7#.

Oct-06-22  Tiggler: I tried Nf6 first. After gxf6. Rxf6 white has too much piled up on f7 for black to defend. Not so good as the game line, but it works.
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