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Peter Leko vs Etienne Bacrot
Dortmund Sparkassen (2009), Dortmund GER, rd 5, Jul-06
Queen's Indian Defense: Fianchetto. Nimzowitsch Variation (E15)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 1 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jul-06-09  NakoSonorense: Awesome!
Premium Chessgames Member
  JonathanJ: what's so awesome about this game? a stupid blunder under time-trouble followed by what some people would call a rook sacrifice. that's all there is. nothing awesome at all in this game.
Jul-06-09  Knight13: And you all throw rotten tomatoes at me when I kibitz first (like I care if I'm first or not) with one or two words.

While everyone else gets away with it. Jealousy, jealousy, jealousy.

And, no, why would I start going after Nako with a knife?

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: You can always bet/count on a Bacrot time-trouble blunder
Jul-06-09  acirce: ..Bg7 was a blunder, but it's a very natural move. Ironically, it hurts Black more than it helps in regards to facing Nf6+, because ..Kg7 isn't possible.

The threat after gxf6 is of course 39.Qxf8+! and on 38..Re8 there is 39.Qe7! Rxe7 40.fxe7

click for larger view

40..Qa1+ 41.Kg2 (not 41.Kh2?? Qe5+ 42.f4 Qxe3 43.Rd8+ Kg7 44.e8=Q Qf2+).

Jul-06-09  WhiteRook48: Hey! Bad comedian!
(throws tomatoes)
Jul-06-09  acirce: 36..Qxb4 holds, but is close to losing after 37.Nf6+ Kg7 38.Qh2: 38..Rh8?? 39.Qxh8! But 38..Bxf6 39.Qh6+ Kg8 40.gxf6 Qg4+ 41.Kf1 Qc4+ is a perpetual. This was pointed out by somebody posting at Mig's blog.

36..Kg7 works too but doesn't look like a very natural move, to me at least.

Jul-06-09  tarek1: I didn't like 32...Bxa1
Black could force simplifications into a drawn endgame with something like 32...Qxa1+ 33.Kh2 Be5 34.Nxe5 Qxe5 35.Qxe5 Rxe5 36.Rxd7 Rxg5 37.Rxa7
Jul-06-09  Chlipchlop: Strange to see Leko sacrificing. And attacking too... xD And a well deserved win at the end. :)
Jul-07-09  Whitehat1963: Monday puzzle after 38...Rc8.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Time is the best teacher.
Jul-07-09  ajile: I don't like the move 5..Bb7. Even though it's the most popular in the CG database. Just leave the bishop on a6 pressuring the c4 pawn and raking down the a6-f1 diagonal. If White plays an early cxd5 then Black also has the nice move Bxf1 slowing White's Rh1 deployment.

I like an alternate move like the simple 5..c6 as in Zhang Ziyang vs A Wahono, 2009

5..c6 is much more in the spirit of this opening and prepares ..d5.

Jul-07-09  Chuckles: GM Spraggett has some nice annotations of this game on his blog:

Jul-11-09  chillowack: <JonathanJ: what's so awesome about this game? a stupid blunder under time-trouble followed by what some people would call a rook sacrifice. that's all there is.> So you're saying all you saw were the last few moves of the game, is that it? You didn't see all the creative maneuvering Leko did to *create* that final sequence? There's some very strong chess being played here, very instructive stuff, if you have the eyes to see it.
Jul-11-09  kurtrichards: Bacrot's queen was paralyzed in a4.
Jul-11-09  percyblakeney: <GM Spraggett has some nice annotations of this game on his blog>

Very nice annotations indeed, interesting to read.

Jul-30-09  David2009: Very early for me - insomnia on a hot summer night. Thursday's puzzle Leko vs Bacrot, 2009 White to play 37? Medium
37 Nf6+ leaps out like a sore thumb. 37...Bxf6 is forced, 38 gxf6 threatens 39 Qxf8+ and 40 Rd8 mate. I cannot see a defense for Black, e.g. 39...Re8 40 Qe7 is the same combination. Black's Queen is badly misplaced and has no time to re-enter the game with ...Qa1+ followed by ...Qa2 because of the mate. Time to check.
I missed 39...Rc8 but 40 Rxf7 is not difficult to find.
Jul-30-09  dzechiel: White to move (37?). Material even. "Medium."

This took me a few minutes, but I think I have the solution. What troubled me about this was black's potential move ...Qa1+, covering f6, g7 and h8. This tended to eliminate lines where the white queen penetrated on the h-file. I also wanted to take advantage of the misplaced black queen. Over there on the a-file, hidden behind pawns, it will be difficult for the queen to help except through the above mentioned check.

After a while, I started looking at ways to give up the queen (such as 37 Qxg6), and I then saw the potential for back rank mates IF I could get the pawn to f6. I started to reorder moves and finally came up with

37 Nf6+ Bxf6

Black can't simply move the king with 37...Kh8 because of 38 Qh2+.

38 gxf6

OK, the first step is complete. And we now threaten 39 Qxf8+ Kxf8 40 Rd8#. Black can give the check

38...Qa1+ 39 Kg2

Best to live on the light squares and avoid further checks from the black queen. But the mate threat still looms. It looks like the rook must move.


If the rook moves to a8, b8 or c8, then 40 Rxf7 and black is in a world of hurt.

40 Qe7

Dual threats here; 41 Qxe8+, winning a rook with mate to follow, and just plain 41 Qxf7+ with mate to follow.

40...Rxe7 41 fxe7

Threatening to get a new queen.

41...Qe5 42 Rd8+ Kg7 43 e8=Q

and white is a rook up.

I sure hope this is the solution. Time to check.

Jul-30-09  zooter: 37.Nf6+ Bxf6 (as 37...Kh8 Qh2+ mates quickly) 38.gxf6 and the slow death of queen moving up to h6 and mating doesn't seem stoppable

Time to check

Jul-30-09  zooter: Missed the much simpler threat of 39.Qxf8+ but got the idea right
Jul-30-09  Sacsacmate: Can't take any I remember this game from very recently concluded tournament...I think Bacrot was done in by time-trouble...still threat of Qxf8..was nice little nuance... black queen has simply deserted her king...
Jul-30-09  blacksburg: i heard there were tomatoes here.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Open Defence: you say to-mate-o I say to-mah-to
Jul-30-09  gofer: The first thing I noticed was that white "owns" f6.
The second thing I noticed was that black's queen cannot help defend its back rank because the retreat squares of a6 and a5 are guarded, so to defend it first has to go up the board. The natural ways to do this are a) Qa1+ Kg2 Qc3 or b) Qc2 both of which lose a move to get back to the back rank...

37 Nf6+ Bxf6 (Kh8 Qh2+ mating)
38 gxf6 ...

leading to the immediate threat of 39 Qxf8+ Kxf8 40 Rd8#. But, black's queen cannot get back in time to defend and so black's rook must deal with this all on their own!

38 ... Ra8/Rc8 39 Rxf7 mating

38 ... Re8 39 Qe7! Rxe7 (forced) 40 fxe7 Qxb4 41 e8=Q+ Kg7/Kh7 42 Qxf7+ Kh6 43 Rd4 winning

38 ... Re8 39 Qe7! Rxe7 40 fxe7 Qa1+ 41 Kg2 Qe5 42 Rd8+ Kg7 43 e8=Q Qg5+ 44 Kf1 and the checks are over and now black must defend Qh8# and not swap off queens into a losing end game... not possible me thinks...

Game over... Time to check!

Jul-30-09  Roemer: <percyblakeney> How do I get to GM Spraggett's blog?
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