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Gyula Sax vs Jaan Ehlvest
"Sax Sacs" (game of the day Jun-20-2014)
Reggio Emilia (1988/89), Reggio Emilia ITA, rd 1, Dec-28
Sicilian Defense: Scheveningen Variation. Keres Attack (B81)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White has a bishop for a rook and a pawn.

Black threatens 20... Qf4+.

White can block the black queen with 20.b4, threatening 21.Qg5:

A) 20... gxf6 21.Rg1+ Kh8 22.Qh6 Rg8 23.Qxf6+ Rg7 24.Qxg7#.

B) 20... Rfd8 21.Bd3 (21.Qg5 Bf5+ and 22... Bg6)

B.1) 21... g6 22.Qh6 and mate in two.

B.2) 21... h6 22.Rg1 Kf8 23.Rxg7 Be6 24.Rg8+ Kxg8 25.Qxh6 and mate soon (25... Rxd3+ 26.cxd3 Qa2+ 27.Ke3, etc.).

B.3) 21... e4 22.Qg5 Kf8 (22... g6 23.Qh6 + -) 23.Qxg7+ Ke8 24.Qg8#.

B.4) 21... gxf6 22.Qxh7+ Kf8 23.Qh6+ Ke7 24.Ra1 traps the queen (24... Qb5 25.Bxb5 and the discovered check cannot capture the white queen).

B.5) 21... Kf8 22.fxg7+ seems to win by either direct mate attack or traps the black queen similarly to in B.4.

C) 20... h6 21.Rg1 Rfd8 22.Rxg7+ and mate next.

D) 20... Bf5 21.Qxf5 Rfd8+ 22.Bd3 with a winning attack. For example, 22... gxf6 23.Rg1+ Kf8 24.Qxf6 e4 25.Rg8+ Kxg8 26.Qg7#.

Jan-30-15  chesssantosh: <pilobolus> Exactly the point I was about to say.

22.Qh6 leads to mate pretty quickly.

Jan-30-15  gofer: Black only has one check up its sleeve, Qf4+, but its a little bit nasty, as it stops Qh6 and could cause all sorts of problems so first we have to deal with that and then we can start the attack properly...

<20 b4! ...>

The poor old queen is stuck on the queens side of the board. The only path back to its king is via a2 and then d5+ or e6, both of which are too slow, give white its one extra move to get the attack rolling...

20 ... gxf6?
21 Rg1+ Kh8
22 Qh6 mating

20 ... g6
21 Qh6 mating

20 ... Qa2
21 Bd3 Bf4 (d4 Qg4 mating)
22 Qxf4 Qe6
23 fxg7 Rd8
24 Qxe6 fxe6
25 Bxe5

So black must give up the bishop to avoid losing...

20 ... Rfd8
21 Bd3 Bf4
22 Qxf4 g6 transposes to the line below...

20 ... Bf4
21 Qxf4 Rfd8+
22 Bd3 g6
23 Qxe5!

White lines up the queen trap with Ra1!


Hmmm, not quite what I expected! I saw the queen trap, but felt it could be avoided by sacrificing the bishop...

Jan-30-15  gofer: On second thoughts 20 ... Qa2 struggles.

20 b4 Qa2
21 Bd3 Bf5
22 Bxf5! Qd4+ (Rd8+ Ke3)
23 Bd3 mating

So that does just leave...

20 b4 Rfd8
21 Bd3 Bf4
22 Qxf4 g6
23 Qxe5 ...

click for larger view

Now, 23 ... Re8 fails to 24 Qxe8! Rxe8 25 Ra1!

Jan-30-15  cocker: <nalinw> has given the answer to 22 Qh6.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson:

click for larger view

White is threatening the keyhole mate in three with Qg5,Qh6 and Qg7 mate.

1.Qg5 Qf4+ Queens Off and no keyhole mate so 1.b4 stops Black from playing Qf4+. And whilst looking for ways for the Black Queen to help her King one notices the Black Queen is suddenly very short of squares.

New threats Bd3 with mate on h7 and Ra1 trapping Queen and 1.Qg5 is still lurking. That is three threats, usually two is all you need. 1.b4 must be right.

Final thought, when Black defends against the mate(s) is the price you are paying for the Black Queen too expensive. (I've got into the habit of checking these minor detals....No.)

So 1.b4 and take from there.

Jan-30-15  morfishine: Wonderful, <20.b4> a perfect compliment to 6.g4

I didn't see it. I went for 20.Rg1 and got lost in my own complications


Jan-30-15  sorokahdeen: That title is the high-point of my day!

Does Sax sac here? Oh yes!

Jan-30-15  Nick46: Nice post, <Domdaniel>
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Wow. I was trying to calculate every possible kingside sacrifice, when only a pawn move was needed. :|
Jan-30-15  5hrsolver: Got the two ideas here today after 5 hours of solving. First isolate the black queen with 20.b4 and then trap the queen when there was no direct mating attack. At the same time white has also to be careful to avoid a discovered attack on his queen. Didn't get the exact moves in the game but I'm giving myself 1 point.
Jan-30-15  Cheapo by the Dozen: White is down exchange and pawn. Black has a pawn hanging. Black threatens to force a queen exchange by ... Qg4, and in some lines (e.g. after the appealing 20 Qg5) by ... Qf4+ as well.

Over the board I'd try 20 b4 to wall off Black's queen. The plan is to load up on g7, with a base line of

21 Qg5 g6
22 Qh6

and with Rg1 entering the mix against obvious defensive tries such as ... gf or ... h6

Black can try 20 ... R(either)d8, with the idea of 21/22 ... Bf5+/Bg6. But White can block the discovered check with 21 Bd3, and the mating threat is back on. White can also just retreat with Kc1, since a side benefit of b4 is that the c3 bishop now covers a1.

Over the board as Black I'd try 20 ... Bf5, which definitely slows down White's attack. Accepting the sacrifice seems mandatory. So my main line becomes:

20 b4 Bf5
21 Qxf5 g6
22 Qxe5

White has 2 bishops for the rook. The precarious position of his king is somewhat worrisome, but his attack is actually likely to get through before Black's does.

Jan-30-15  Cheapo by the Dozen: I neglected to mention the additional mating threat from Bd3, because I didn't see it as necessary. And hence I also didn't look ahead to the queen trap. Oh well; I still think I've have gotten this right over the board (not that I've have gotten to this position in the first place).
Premium Chessgames Member
  paulalbert: Very seldom I get Friday, but got this one. I saw that I needed to cut off the black Q from getting to the defense on the king side, so looked at b4 right away, but took me awhile to see that after Bd3 and its threats that swinging the R all the way from h1 to a1 traps the black Q. Very pretty and instructive.
Jan-30-15  TheaN: 30 January 2015 <20.?>

White is down an exchange and pawn for a formidable attack on the black kingside position. Slight discomfort for white is that on any move fueling the atack black can activate his queen via Qf4+, potentially trading queens (after 20.Qg5 Qf4+ or 20.Rg1 g6 21.Qh6 Qf4+) and taking control of h6. In turn, black will turn the attack around with Rad8 (or Rfd8 to give the king some space).

After realizing the queen is such a menace, <20.b4!> Δ Qg5 comes to mind. Point is that the white attack will remain powerful even a move down. Black has three essentially different approaches to avoid mate. <20....gxf6 21.Rg1+ Kh8 22.Qh6 Rh8 23.Qxf6+ Rg7 24.Qxg7# 1-0<>> and <20....h6 21.Rg1 g6 (g5) 22.Rxg5+ hxg5 23.Qxg5+ Kh7 24.Qg7# 1-0<>> are the weakest. <20....Kh8<>> to play Rg8 next, but doesn't help after <21.fxg7+ Kg8 (Kxg7 22.Qg5+ Kh8 23.Qf6+ Kg8 24.Rg1+ Bg4 25.Rxg4# 1-0) 22.gxf8=Q+ Kxf8 23.Qxh7 <>> and black is in trouble.

Best option seems to be to counterattack. Without the queen though, this has much less power than black would have wanted. <20....Rfd8> the f8-Rook is better to give the king more space, as will be shown <21.Bd3!> Δ Qxh7# and preventing Bg4+. <21....Bf5!> if e4 22.Qg5 g6 23.Qh6 e3 24.fxe3 and 25.Qg7#).

Bf5 is stronger than it seems. The point is that black is already an exchange and pawn up and can drop a piece. A difficult endgame yes, but white's position is a mess after trying to force the attack. Nonetheless <22.Qxf5 g6 23.Qxe5 Rab8 24.Qf4 > and white will still prevail due to the mate threats.

Jan-30-15  TheaN: Ah darn, I missed the gxf6 defense and hadn't envisioned the trapping of the queen beforehand. Regardless though, 20.b4 and subsequent variations are white's only try and strong as it is. I would have found the right moves otb as they are obvious, but a shame I didn't see it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: Black could have avoided the queen trap with 21...Bf5.

click for larger view

22 Ra1 is not playable (because of 21...Bxd3) but black is still losing after 22 Qxf5 g6 23 Qg5.

click for larger view

Black can't let 24 Qh6 with a forced mate happen.

One line of play is for black to go with 23...Rxd3+. Now after 24 cxd3 Qa2+ 25 Ke3 Qe6 black is down a piece at the expense of stopping that Qh6 threat.

click for larger view

Jan-30-15  Edeltalent: 20.? White to play

Only Black's queen, which is in an active position where it might harass White's king or swing to g4, prevents White from a straightforward mate with Qg5-h6-g7.

I first tried 20.Rg1 Qf4+ 21.Kd1 Qxf6 22.Bxe5, which looks winning, probably also 21...g6 22.Bxe5 and Qh6 next. Directly 20...g6 is tougher to meet though. 20.Rg1 seems a bit like a wasted move, Rxg6+ will never be an option and Qf4+ is still in the air.

Better looks the cold-blooded 20.b4, calmly cutting the queen off. 20...gxf6 21.Rg1+ Kh8 22.Qh6 mates, 20...Rfd8 21.Bd3 (to avoid the idea 21.Qg5 Bf5+ 22.Bd3 Bg6) Kf8 (21...Bf5 22.Qxf5 g6 23.Qg5 is hopeless) 22.fxg7+ Ke7 23.Qxe5+ Be6 24.Qc5+, and Black will get killed on the black squares.

No time today to double-check the calculation or look for better defensive resources, so bear with me if the analysis is sloppy.

Jan-30-15  BOSTER: The <puzzle move> b4 is hidden from us like a sexy ass in MicroBikini.

<haydn20: A computer finds this move, but does it realize how pretty it is>.

<Domdaniel: no computer has ever appreciated the prettiness of anything>.

In the field of AI the 65y.old Iconic Turing Test was beaten by computer.

Jan-30-15  Castleinthesky: Missed the move, which is a brilliant example of interference. Black's queen is taken entirely out of the game.
Jan-30-15  Moszkowski012273: Black is actually winning after 18...Qa4
Jan-30-15  Moszkowski012273: Which in turn makes 16.Rxd7... unsound.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Longview: In our given position (after 19...Qa4) there seem to be several candidate moves for White to calculate all putting pressure on the cornered Black King: Qxe5, Qg5, Rg1, Be3, fxg7 Black's last move suggests that he is considering 20....Qg4(or Bg4) threatening our Queen and blocking access to g7(or plugging up the g-file for the rook). Since I have been studying blocking moves, the odd b4 comes to me...ordinarily it would not. This would prohibit black from being a disrupter with the queen though I suspect she can be handled. It just might not leave us well equipped for an easy knock out that we all like.

I cannot seem to get any further than this but the more I look at it. b4 basically makes the Black Queen useless, she cannot get to a5 or a6 so it is like +9!

Shazam!! That was the move. Wow! I got it (pardon as I struggle to get over patting myself on the back real stoutly....get ready for a blunder next). The R-a1 was a surprise. Forced loss of the Queen I guess necessitated by the lack of a closed box on the King. I would have thought 22Q-h6 with 23.Rg1 was the way it was going to go down.

Now (post computer analysis) I see where my miscue is (remember I warned you about blunders) Rfd8 was a set up for a discovered pin...which I just discovered allowing Bf5 and Bg6 obfuscating my Rg1 to worthless and putting Black back at parity.

Jan-30-15  ChessMan94: <Penguincw> You are not alone. :)
Jan-30-15  patzer2: As <Sally Simpson> observes, in our Friday puzzle position (20. ?) White has a mate threat prepared, but the Pawn on f5 and the Queen on a4 are interfering with this plan.

I saw the threat 20. Qg5? g6! 21. Qh6 Qf4+! 22. Qxf4 exf4 , but failed miserably in trying to thwart this plan with my choice of 20. Bxe5?? (diagram below):

click for larger view

Here Black turns the tables and wins with 20...Qb4+! 21. Ke3 Rae8 22. f4 Qe1+ 23. Kf3 Qd1+ 24. Be2 Qxh1+ 25. Kf2 Qh2+ 26. Ke1 gxf6 27. Bd3 Rxe5+ 28. fxe5 Qxe5+ 29. Qxe5 fxe5 .

Instead of sending the Chaplain (i.e. Bishop) to do a foot-soldiers job of obstructing the Queen with the feeble attempt 20. Bxe5??, I should have moved a foot soldier out to obstruct the Queen with 20. b4!!

Playing it out with Fritz:

<20. b4 !! Rfd8>

20... Bf5 21. Qxf5 Rfd8+ 22. Bd3 g6 23. Qg5 Rxd3+ 24. cxd3 Qa2+ 25. Ke3 Qe6 26. Qxe5 ;

20... gxf6 21. Rg1+ Kh8 22. Bd3 f5 23. Qh6 Rg8 24. Qf6+ Rg7 25. Qxg7#

<21. Bd3 gxf6>

21... g6 22. Qh6

<22. Ra1>

Not 22. Qh5? Bf5! 23. Rg1+ Bg6 24. h5 a5 25. hxg6 fxg6 26. Rxg6+ hxg6 27. Qxg6+ Kf8 28. Qxf6+ Ke8 29. Qe6+ =.

<22... Qb5 23. Qxh7+>

Not 23. Bxb5?? Bg4+ 24. Ke3 (24. Bd3 Bxh5 ) 24... Bxh5 .

<23... Kf8 24. Qh6+ Ke7 25. Bxb5 cxb5 26. Qe3> 1-0

Black resigns in lieu of 26...Be6+ 27. Ke2 Bc4+ 28. Ke1 .

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