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Nigel Short vs Alexander Morozevich
Reggio Emilia (2010), Reggio Emilia ITA, rd 2, Dec-29
French Defense: Steinitz Variation (C11)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  rogge: Moro's (live) rating is below 2700, for the first time since July 2003.
Dec-30-10  adbat: ...9.Qe7 not new Morozevich, and the game was played in Spielmann-Alapin, Munich 1909.After continued 10.Nf3/f6, 11.Qh4/g6 12.ef6/Nf6 13.Bd2/e5 14.fe5/Ne5 15.0-0-0/Nd3 16.cd3/Be3 17.Rhe1/Bd2 18.Rd2/Qd6 19.Rde2/Bd7 20.Qd4/b6 21.Re5/Rac8 22.Kb1/Qc6 23.Rd5/Nd5 24.Nd5/Qc2 25.Ka2/Rce8 26.Ne7/Re7 27.Re7/Rf7 28.Qd5 1-0
Dec-30-10  capanegra: <adbat> Thanks for sharing this game with us, which is not in the database!

Interestingly, both games, separated in time by more than 100 years, reached almost identical positions before after 16.cxd3:

Spielmann-Alapin (1909)

click for larger view

Short-Morozevich (2010)

click for larger view

From there, Alapin played the unimaginative 16...Be3? and lost completely the initiative, while Moro started a bayonet attack with 16b5!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <Interestingly, both games [Spielmann-Alapin 1909; Short-Morozevich 2010] separated in time by more than 100 years, reached almost identical positions after 16.cxd3. From there, Alapin played the unimaginative 16...Be3? and lost completely the initiative, while Moro started a bayonet attack with 16b5!>

Interesting indeed! It should also be noted that Morozevich's 11...h6 is clearly better than Alapin's 11...g6, which is much more weakening, and would provide White with some immediate K-side countrerplay if Black tries to attack similarly on the Q-side - in the 1909 position, 16...b5 17.Rhe1 Qb7 wouldn't work because of 18.Bh6, winning at least the exchange (the rook has to stay on the f-file to defend Nf6, and 18...Rf7 is met by 19.Ne5).

Dec-31-10  Sacsacmate: Crazy stuff from the 2 uncompromising romanticists....pity Moro could not pull it off....
Jan-03-11  ounos: I love what Moro did with his rooks. Good old creative play
Jan-05-11  Everyone: Short analyzing his game against Morozevich:
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eyal: <Short analyzing his game against Morozevich>

"9Qe7! - Why the hell didn't <I> play it myself with Black? Because this is a very simple plan to break the centre [with f6]"

A couple of other interesting comments Short feels Moro played a bit too simplistically with 18Bxe3, and that he could have gotten a better game than he did with the subtle <20.h3> (instead of Rde1) the point is that Black wouldnt be able to put a knight or bishop on g4 as in the game, or in such a line as 20.Qd4 b4 21.axb4 axb4 22.Ne2, and now White would be ok were it not for 22Ng4. After 20.h3 b4 21.axb4 axb4 22.Ne2, followed by Kd2 and Qd4, he thinks the king is not in immediate danger and that he has quite a good control over the dark squares. Engine analysis confirms that this is better for White than the game continuation, even though Black should still have an advantage.

About 36.Rb8! he says that its not easy to see because the rook goes the other way from what appears to be the centre of action on the board, and also that it involves a "switch" between the rook and queen in terms of their placement on the 8th rank a couple of moves earlier.

Sep-30-14  SpiritedReposte: 36. Rb8!! The kind of move that you look twice at and still can't believe it.
Jun-11-15  Cheapo by the Dozen: My first serious idea is 36 Rb8, to harass the overloaded Black queen. If Black undefends the f5 rook, Qxf5+ is mate in two. And if he averts the Rxb5 and Qxf5 threats, then it's hard to also stop Nxd3.
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White is one pawn down.

Black threatens 36... Nf4+, 36... Nxe1+, 36... Nxb2+, etc.

The black queen protects all the black pieces and the square e8. This suggests 36.Rb8:

A) 36... Qxb8 37.Qxf5+ g5 (37... Kh4 38.Qg4#) 38.Qh3+ (better than taking the knight) 38... Kg6 39.Re6+ followed by 40.Qf5+ or 40.Qxh6+ with mate soon.

B) 36... Nf4+ 37.Rxb5 Nxe6 38.Rxf5+ wins a rook.

C) 36... Qa5 (or Qc5) 37.Nxd3 + - [N vs P].

D) 36... Qd5 37.Qxd5 Rxd5 38.Nxd3 + - [N vs P].

E) 36... Nxe1 37.Rxb5 Rxb5 38.Qg4#.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: I forgot to add

F) 36... Qe5 37.Rxe5 Ra1+ 38.Ke2 (38.Kg2 Nf4+ 39.Kg3 Rg1#) 38... Rxe5+ 39.Qxe5 Nxe5 40.Rb5 Rb1 41.Rxe5+ Kg6 42.Nd3 + -, with a knight for one pawn instead of two as in the text.

Jun-11-15  gofer: I am glad this one is quite easy. Lots to do today! But not as much to do as poor old black's queen!

Black's queen is protecting against 37 Qxf5+
Black's queen is protecting against 37 Nxd3

So lets give it something to do, like move off b5 which is the only square where it can do both!!!

<36 Rb8! ...>

Black can't grab the bull by the horns!

36 ... Qxb8
37 Qxf5+ g5 (Kh4 Qg4#)
38 Qh3+ Kg6
39 Re6+ mating

and defending the rook is problematic in some ways!

36 ... Qd5
37 Qxd5 Rxd5
38 Nxd3

36 ... Qa5
37 Nxd3 Rxf3+
38 Nf2 Rf5 (Rxf2+ 39 Kxf2 )
39 Qd2+

But there is another that is quite tricky!!!

<36 ... Qc5>
<37 Nxd3 Rxf3+>

Now retreating the knight seems to be a mistake!!!

38 Nf2 Rxf2+!! 39 Kxf2 d3+

<38 Kg1!! ...>

White walks away to h1 and quiet victory...

<38 ... Qg5+>
<39 Kh1 ...>


I missed Qe5! was really tricky, but lost quickly. What do our silicon friends say as to black's best response? Is <36 ... Qc5> any good?

Jun-11-15  morfishine: At first I was deceived by pattern recognition thinking this was a Short brilliancy game featuring the stunning rook sacrifice <Rxh6+>

Once I realized this was not that game, I quickly focused on <36.Rb8>. The idea is simple: The Black Queen is overloaded communicating with both the Rook and Knight

As usual, my continuation is not as strong as what was played: 36...Nxe1+ 37.Rxb5 Rxb5 and White wins after <37.Qe8+>


Premium Chessgames Member
  jith1207: Good lesson and too good puzzle for me. I tried to see who is overloaded and who could be made weaker by White's move., but I never realized the Rb8 move. I still need to go over to understand what happened.
Jun-11-15  wooden nickel: Nice game from Short but also hats and wigs off to Black almost having a winning position, the typical "puzzle solver type of move" 38.Rxh6+ just doesn't work, forcing 38.Rb8, actually only a "normal" move after which Black still comes up with nice ideas!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Okay, I got black's first move (Qb5-e5), but I thought 36.Re5 was the answer, but missed 36...Nxe5 (hoping for 36...Qxe5). :|
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: patzer2: For today's Thursday puzzle White wins with <36. Rb1!>.

The Rook is poison as it's capture leads to mate after 36... Qxb8 37. Qxf5+ g5 38. Qf7+ Kh4 when play might continue 39. Nxd3 Qb5 (39... Ra7 40. Re4+ g4 41. Qf6+ Kh5 42. fxg4#) 40. Re4+ g4 41. Rxg4+ Kh3 42. Qh5+ Qxh5 43. Nf2+ Kxh2 44. Rg2#.

Black's decisive mistake was <33...Nxd3?>, allowing White to pull off a swindle with <34. Rh8+ Kg6 35. Qe6+!> (+2.33 @ 21 depth, Deep Fritz 14).

Instead, Black could have held the advantage with 33...Ra2! (-1.31 @ 25 depth, Deep Fritz 14).

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: The pawns look strong, but the knight and rook can stop them!
Jun-11-15  BOSTER: <Eyal: From 0-1>.

This is the pos. black to play 27...,where he could win the game by force.

click for larger view

27...Bxf3+ 28.gxf3 Nf4+ 29.K f1 (0rKd2) Qg6 30.Ne3 Qxd3+ 31.Kf2 Qd2+ 32.Kf1 Qxe1+ 33.Kxe1 Nd3+ 34.Kd2 Nxe5 35.Rxe5 Rxf3.

if 29.Kd2 Qg6 30.Nf2 Qg2 31.Qe3 d4 32.Qe5 Qxf2+.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Longview: Like <Morfishine> I looked at the Rxh6+ and thought for a moment that I had it. Nope. I did not recognize the overloaded Queen. Cool to put her in the pickle where it is not just a simple rook trade after 34. Rb8 Qxb8 because 35. Qxf5 comes with check and the d3 Knight falls as well.

<Patzer2> points out the flaw in Black's planning begins at 33...Nd3 which as you go through the game looked ok, picking off an apparent weak and blocking pawn, guarding the Knight attacker with the Queen even being able to maintain coverage on the Rf5 if white considered a trade of Knights. Instead it appears that the harder to find, Ra2, attacks a weaker pawn and keeps black from decimation that follows the R8 challenge to the overloaded Black Queen.

What really defines overload anyway? The lack of ability to follow up with the protection offered by the covering piece, thus loosing?

Cool guys, great explanations.

Jun-11-15  Jack Kerouac: Check it out, Chess World.
Spider Man plays chess in his secrete identity.
Coming to a theater near you.....
Jun-11-15  dumbgai: I like <BOSTER>'s position. One of black's kings is close to being checkmated, but he can afford to lose it since he's 2 kings ahead.
Jun-11-15  BOSTER: < dumbgai: 2 kings ahead>. White king on e2 was very angry, this is why his appearance changed his colour.
Jun-11-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: Black is up a pawn, with an advanced pawn on b3, and threatens 36...Nf4+ winning the white queen. On the other hand, the black king is also unfortunately exposed. Initially, I was looking at 36.Rxh6+(??), thinking white might have a forced mate with 37.Qe8+, overlooking that e8 is covered. Then I realized black's big problem in the position is that Qb5 is overloaded. Therefore,

36.Rb8!! leaves a difficult choice for defense:

A. 36... Qxb8? 37.Qxf5+ Kh4 38.Qg4#

B. 36... Nf5+ 37.Rxb5 Nxe6 38.Rxf5+ Kg6 39.Rb5 nets a rook and b3 falls.

C. 36... Nxe1 37.Rxb5 Rxb5 38.Qg4#

D. 36...Qa5! 37.Nxd3 Rxf3+ 38.Kg2 Rf5 (Rxd3 39.Re5+) 39.Nf4+! (Qxf5+ leads to a better but close endgame with N for a pawn) Kg4 (Kg5 40.Qg6+ Kxf4 41.Qg3#) 40.h3+ Kxf4 41.Re4+ Kg5 42.Rg4+ Kh5 43.Qg6#

Time for review....

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