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Matthias Wahls vs Saevar Bjarnason
"Back Against the Wahls" (game of the day Aug-10-2015)
Malmo (1985), Malmo, Sweden, rd 6
Spanish Game: Exchange. Bronstein Variation (C69)  ·  1-0



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sac: 18.Ra8+ PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  TheTamale: Wow, beautiful win by the April 5 2012 POTD.
Mar-22-13  Eduardo Bermudez: I enjoy this game every time that I see it !
Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: This game is credited as Wahls-Bjarnason (Malmo 1985) in Graham Burgess's book, The Mammoth Book of Chess.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: This game is also in Tidskrift för Schack, Jan. 1986, p. 17. Black is IM Saevar Bjarnason.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: <This game is also in Tidskrift för Schack, Jan. 1986, p. 17>

Some has Gary Lane as Black here. Lane did play in the Malmö tournament, so there's a tiny chance that the magazine got it wrong.

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Gary Lane himself stated:

"Finally, Simon Bartlett from England sparked an amusing debate on <my most famous game that I never played.>

This is the Ruy Lopez Exchange brilliancy Wahls-Lane, Malmo 1985/6 where White wins in a puzzle-book fashion. The fact that it was Icelandic IM Saevar Bjarnason playing Black never seems to get a mention.

I asked readers for any more sightings of the game and I am delighted and honoured to report that René Olthof from The Netherlands left a comment. He is of course the supervisor of the NIC Yearbook Series:

"The game <Matthias Wahls – Saevar Bjarnason, Malmö 1985/86> (7) can also – with a diagram! – wrongly be found in NIC Yearbook 4, page 194 with Gary Lane being black."" last page

Aug-09-15  zanzibar: A critical position in the game for Black -

After 15.axb5:

click for larger view

White has systematically expanded on the Q-side, almost putting the entire Exchange Variation on trial.

The position is quite sharp, ie Black really has only one viable continuation.

Aug-09-15  zanzibar: The combo at the end well deserves a diagram:

After 17...cxb5?

click for larger view

Aren't double checks great?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: < Apr-05-12 Penguincw: Very few people could've seen two piece sacrifices. >

Hey, I see I've been here before (it always feels good to have kibitzed on a POTD/GOTD before it's actually POTD/GOTD).

And well, could many have seen that double piece sacrifice? :) Might make a nice Puzzle in the future.

Aug-10-15  Steve.Patzer: I failed to take my meds at the proper time, so I was wondering what happens after 20....Kxa7 21. Nxc6++ Kb8 or even Ka6. Also what happens after 21....Ka8 22. Ra1+
Premium Chessgames Member
  DAbrahams: Here's a hint: 21...Kb8 is not possible.
Aug-10-15  Steve.Patzer: OK, I was thinking the moves were Nxb5++ not Nc6, now my mind is clearing up.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Sometimes chess looks like an easy game. The combinations seem obvious, the strategy is simple ... I get the sense that I might have been able to play a game like that.

This is not one of those games. This is one of those spectacular sobering moments when you realise that you almost certainly would not have seen it OTB.

Quite quite beautiful. If I was wearing a hat I would take it off. In fact, the combination is so stunning that I am almost tempted to put a hat on simply so that I could take it off.

Aug-10-15  sleepyirv: Great game! But wouldn't <Black Against the Wahls> been the better pun?
Aug-10-15  Yuri Stremel: Brutal checkmate!
Aug-10-15  Eusebius: Never seen something like that...beautiful
Aug-10-15  orior1: I can't believe how a human can spot this combination. it's unreal!
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: The knight and bishop double-check...and the rook mates.
Aug-10-15  poachedeggs: White pushes 14. b5...

Why doesn't black take with his doubled pawn instead of the a pawn?

Aug-10-15  BOSTER: I guess that it's not easy to find IM who'd not sac the bishop in the pos black to play13.... After 13...Bxh3 if 14. gxh3 Qxh3 black has an attack. Another I can't explain why white played 11.h3.
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: Ahh, the double-heavy piece sac. One of my favorites :)
Aug-10-15  catlover: This was a really fun GOTD. Good choice, Chessgames!
Aug-11-15  Sihlous: I've seen similar themes but this is something special. Great choice.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Retireborn: This game reminds me somewhat of-

Mecking vs Korchnoi, 1974

where Mecking also uses the plan Rb1, b4, a4 to open the a-file. As <Karpova> points out there, Mecking had borrowed the idea from Capablanca.

It would be interesting to know if Wahls knew those games.

Dec-21-17  Zibbit: Fantastic finish!

Here is my YouTube quick analysis of this game:

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