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Teimour Radjabov vs Sergey Karjakin
Tata Steel Group A (2012), Wijk aan Zee NED, rd 6, Jan-20
Queen's Indian Defense: Fianchetto. Nimzowitsch Variation (E15)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: <gofer> I really enjoyed your analysis, very nice!
Mar-09-12  supergeckoh: I didn't get this puzzle. I was looking at 60.♖xd3 which I think also wins. But of course the line played in the game was better.
Mar-09-12  Quentinc: A fascinating miss. Because it's a puzzle, I "knew" the answer was b6 and b7, and that the key would involve a fork on c2 preventing the Black rook from stopping the pawn on the b file. And, STILL, I couldn't get it! I even tried starting with Rc4+.
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White has a knight and a pawn for a bishop.

Black threatens 60... Kxc3.

The advanced pawn suggests 60.b6:

A) 60... Kxc3 61.bxa7 + -.

B) 60... Rxa4 61.b7 Rb4 62.Rc4+ Bxc4 63.Nc2+ Kc5 64.Nxb4 and 65.b8=Q.

C) 60... Ra5 61.b7 + -.

D) 60... Ra6 61.b7 Rb6 62.Rc7 f5 63.a5 Rb2 64.Kg2 with the threat Rd5+, Nd5 and Nb6.

E) 60... Ra8 61.Rc7 f5 (61... Rxa4 62.b7 as in B) 62.Ra7 Rb8 63.a5 Kc5 64.a6 Kb6 65.Ra8 Kc7 66.a7 Rxb7 67.Rc8+, etc.

F) 60... Rb7 61.Rc6 followed by a5 and Rc7, looks similar to E.

Mar-09-12  galdur: I doubt that Karjakin missed Rc4. After b6 he has a totally lost game (which was lost anyway a few moves earlier) and he fell on his sword with Rxa4 so to speak.
Premium Chessgames Member
  gawain: 62 Rc4+ is marvelous. I did not see it.

I'm glad some people have looked at what happens after 60 ...Rb7. This troubled me.

Mar-09-12  gofer: <Once: <Oxspawn> I'm intrigued by your handle.>

<Once>: I think <Oxspawn> made a reference at some point to swimming at Oxford Uni. Maybe he is making reference to being the offspring of that university. Like <Oxbridge> is the combo of both Uni's...

Mar-09-12  M.Hassan: <sevenseaman:"I've played his games and seen many a brilliancy. He should be among the top few" (Referring to Rajabov)>

He is.
In the latest Newsletter, dated March, 2012 of my chess club named Scarborough Community of Toronto Chess news and Views, Rajabov is ranked 5th as far as FIDE rating is concerned after Carlson, Aronian, Kramnik and Anand

Mar-09-12  parmetd: I didn't get to do the problem because I remember watching it live from earlier this year...
Mar-09-12  James Bowman: Lol very nice very nice. I saw 60.b6 almost immediately but the tactical exchange resulting in the fork causing the loss of rook needed to stop the queening pawn was very clever. Bravo Radjabov bravo!
Mar-09-12  tlukechess: This line is amazing. If the rook gets forked, the knight will end up on b4. Black cannot stop promotion once the knight reaches this square as it preventing blacks light-squared bishop from moving to a6 or d5 to attack the passed pawn.
Mar-09-12  efvaatn: I didn't see Rc4!!!!!
Mar-09-12  ajax333221: this is the best puzzle I have seen in a while!

my definition of 'best' = interesting/fun/puzzling/and other hidden factors I don't want to share because no one cares

Mar-09-12  Everett: Long live endgame tactics!
Mar-10-12  sevenseaman: < ajax333221: this is the best puzzle I have seen in a while!

my definition of 'best' = interesting/fun/puzzling/and other hidden factors I don't want to share because no one cares>.

You'll be surprised some of us may do.

Mar-10-12  dufferps: After black's blunder, 60. ... Rxa4, the win for white was quite straightforward. The hardest part of the continuation (for me) was working the proper Queen and King mating sequence without letting black get a stalemate -- rather standard procedure, but poor player that I am, I would probably do better to promote another pawn and use two queens (still having care to avoid stalemate)

But the real challenge, one that I could not solve, was finding if white could force a win if black played 60. ... Rb7. Is there any authoritative answer to that? I have seen some kibitzes about it, and I have tried a few lines with it, but have seen no convincing decisive win moves for either player.

Mar-10-12  dufferps: <doubledrooks> wrote: I reached a won position against Crafty after the following:

60. b6 Rb7 61. Rc6 Be2 62. a5 Rd7 63. Nc2+ Ke5 64. Nb4 e3 65. fe Bf3 66. Rc1 Rd2+ 67. Kg1 Kf6 68. a6 Rg2+ 69. Kf1 Rb2 70. Rc4 Be2+ 71. Ke1 Bxc4 72. a7 Rb1+ 73. Kd2 Ra1 74. b7 Rxa7 75. b8=Q ---------------
Perhaps this answers my call for an authoritative answer to how either player could have forced a win after 60. ... Rb7. However, Crafty played far more aggressively than I would have in this situation, and it did fall apart. I was thinking that black would respond 61. ... Ba6, and after 62. a5, the outcome of the game would depend on movement of the Kings and the king-side pawns.

I just can't convince myslef that white could force a win.

Mar-10-12  David2009: <morfishine: <gofer> I really enjoyed your analysis, very nice!>

click for larger view

I agree - <doubledrooks> and <gofer> have produced real masterclasses in the "strategic tactical" win starting 60.b6 Rb7! 61.Rc6 (link Radjabov vs Karjakin, 2012) and in the "strategic first principles" win starting 60.b6 Rb7 61.Rb3 (link Radjabov vs Karjakin, 2012.

The alternative plan of sacrificing the passed Pawns to activate the White King and win on the King side fails (as per my own post Radjabov vs Karjakin, 2012) even though the line successfully swindles the EGT.

<dufferps: I just can't convince myslef that white could force a win.> The <gofer> method does seem extremely logical.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: A neat finish! Black must either allow the pawn to be queened or lost the rook in a fork...THEN the pawn WILL queen.
Mar-10-12  5hrsolver: Could not find the solution to this problem yesterday. Got back to it today and found the solution. Took me more than 5 hrs. lol!!

It is an unusual forking and promotion situation. That's what made it so hard. A beautiful puzzle!!

Mar-10-12  doubledrooks: <dufferps> wrote: <I just can't convince myslef that white could force a win>, referring to the position after 60. b6 Rb7 61. Rc6 Ba6.

I'm liking 62. Nc2+ Ke5 63. Nb4 Be2 and pushing the a pawn. This seems faster than the way I suggested yesterday (62. a5), which also seems to win (62...Bd3 63. Nc2+ Bxc2 64. Rxc2).

Mar-10-12  zakkzheng: yes,b-six rb-seven is best based on computer,but still loses.Here's how

sixty Rb-seven,sixty-one rc-six,sixty two,a-five,Rb-eight,sixty three,Rc-seven ke-six,nc-four e-three,nxe-three,Ba-six,Ra-seven Bd-three,f-three f-six,ng-two,g-five, Rg7,and that is based on best play by both sides

Jan-04-13  Everett: It will be a real pleasure to play through Radjabovs eventual "best games" collection. This ending must be one of his finest.

The final move has elements of promotion, two deflections (rook off of the b-file or bishop off influencing c2) and two kinds of forks (rook and knight both), which makes the position a worthy addition to many chess tutor's repertoires.

Premium Chessgames Member
  fredthebear: Sorry to spoil the party, but my tactical eye says 58...Bxb5 robs the pin and seems to hold for Black. Black must bust up the connected passers!

There is no computer analysis of 58...Bxb5 shown yet by bloggers. What's the verdict?

Jun-17-17  Muttley101: <fredthebear: Sorry to spoil the party, but my tactical eye says 58...Bxb5 robs the pin and seems to hold for Black. Black must bust up the connected passers!

There is no computer analysis of 58...Bxb5 shown yet by bloggers. What's the verdict?>

Can you explain your thinking a bit more with some moves, because 58 ... Bxb5 looks like it loses to the simple 59. axb5 to me. Tell me what I'm missing?

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