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Dmitry Jakovenko vs Boris Gelfand
FIDE Grand Prix Khanty-Mansiysk (2015), Khanty-Mansiysk RUS, rd 9, May-24
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation. Adams Attack (B90)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 1 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
May-24-15  Jim Bartle: I guess Gelfand saw his king couldn't move and held on in the hope he could sacrifice all his pieces.
May-24-15  310metaltrader: If any one ever says you should resign, this is why. You play until the other guy wins. That's the chicago way.
May-24-15  SirRuthless: Shocking result!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Nice stalemate trap by Gelfand. Jakovenko was under time pressure, so had to make a move quickly. One way to avoid the trap was 49.Kg3, and white should eventually escape the checks.

So glad these events happened. :)

Khanty-Mansiysk rd 9: Jakovenko-Gelfand : Draw [cash in ticket] 100 YOU WIN! COLLECT 150 1:2 1.50 150 May-24-15

May-24-15  latvalatvian: This kind of thing happens all the time in chess. If I were Jakovenko, I'd just yawn and keeping playing chess games like it never happened. He might need a beer or two, but no worries.
May-24-15  latvalatvian: I am not claiming that Gelfand shouldn't bother jumping for joy. The lethargic reaction should only occur with his opponent. Gelfand shouldn't jump up and down too much unless he's used to it, but I don't think he is.
May-24-15  DrAttitude: awesome stalemate! dj never saw it coming. never ever give up!!! bg (boris gelfand) gets today's bobby fischer award for the "never give up award". bg also had winning chances if his opponent had lost on time! outstanding fight!
May-24-15  ajile: 49.hxg4?? was the big mistake. Instead either 49.Ke3 or 49.Kg3 avoid the sacs that follow. The point is you want to give Black moves so there is no stalemate threat. Taking on g4 eliminates Black's last pawn and makes it much easier for Black to find the stalemate line.

click for larger view

Analysis by Rybka 3 32-bit :

1. (6.47): 49.Ke3

2. (5.08): 49.Kg3 Qf3+ 50.Kh4 Qf2+ 51.Kxg4 Qg1+ 52.Kf3 Qf1+ 53.Ke4 Qd3+ 54.Ke5

May-24-15  goodevans: <48...g4> is just one of the best swindles I've ever seen!

In the act of disposing of his last pawn black also creates a mating threat. There are a couple of ways out but white is short of time so can he be sure to escape?

Black isn't just "randomly" throwing away material (a sure sign your opponent has something up his sleeve). <48...g4> is a natural-looking move that poses two problems at once. I'm not at all surprised Jakovenko fell into the trap.

Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: <ge: Black isn't just "randomly" throwing away material (a sure sign your opponent has something up his sleeve). >

I disagree completely. Your opponent is giving up his last Pawn, you have 5 Pawns left, and you don't even sense there may be stalemate issues on board? I think people are going way too easy on DJ here.

May-24-15  Prugno: This is the kind of finish that makes me want to agree with Nigel Short on changing the stalemate rule.

A spectacular swindle by Gelfand, for sure, but by no means a fair result.

May-24-15  SirRuthless: I don't see how it's not fair. Chess is a fight. Jakovenko couldn't win against one of the best fighters of chess in the modern era of the game.
May-24-15  Calar: It is a fair result. If one side fails to notice drawing combination from the other side (be it stalemate, 3fold repetition or perpetual), then it didn't deserve to win.
May-25-15  pinoy king: It's pathetic how if Carlsen played the same game as black, people would praise him like a God and claim that only he could find this resource.
May-25-15  Moszkowski012273: White missed the much better 26.Bxd6....
May-26-15  MindCtrol9: Excellent resource to save the game by Gelfand.When you are winning a game is when you have to be more careful, and when you are against the wall you have to fight to save your life.The move <48...g4> was a good one.I think some people must take some time and read a little more about Gelfand and his accomplishments.
May-27-15  visayanbraindoctor: <Jim Bartle: I guess Gelfand saw his king couldn't move and held on in the hope he could sacrifice all his pieces.>

48... g4!

that's right. When Jakovenko blundered by taking the pawn, Gelfand only had two pieces left to get rid of. Fortunately for him, they were Queen and Knight, a traditionally very powerful attacking duo. The rules on their possible movements gives them the ability to coordinate well. It turns out that the only way to stop their coordinated checks is by eating them.

This game looks as though it belongs to the realm of chess fantasy. An immortal stalemate game.

Sep-23-16  Olsonist: Pretty easy for a Thursday. You're down 5 pawns. You're king is already stalemated. What else are you gonna do?
Sep-23-16  WDenayer: I don't understand anything. What happens after 51.Bxd5 ?
Sep-23-16  patzer2: Seeing today's Friday puzzle position (?), it was easy to guess the solution was figuring out how to force a stalemate.

I looked at 50...Qe2+? and saw 51. Kxf4?? Qe3+ 52. Qxe3 = was a stalemate.

However, after struggling with it, I finally realized there's no way to force a stalemate after 50...Qe2+? 51. Kd4. Indeed, Black is busted after 50...Qe2? 51. Kd4 (+6.51 @ 20 depth, Deep Fritz 15).

I missed the puzzle solution and subsequent forced stalemate with 50...Nd5+! (0.00 @ 51 depth, Stockfish 7), in large part because I didn't even consider it.

A few moves earlier, Black got away with a swindle because of 48...g4 49. hxg4? Qg2+ =.

Instead, 49. Kg3 gxh3 49. Qf7 (+250 @ 38 depth, Komodo 9.2) wins big for White.

Sep-23-16  lost in space: Gelfand’s immortal stalemate game
Sep-23-16  NBZ: Tricky: Black must go for stalemate. Qe2 was extremely tempting, because of Kxf4 Qe3+ drawing straight away. But after Kd4! it is hard to find a good knight check. Ne6? of course loses to Qxe6. Qd3+ Kc5 Qe3+ Kc6 and the white king escapes.

Somewhat reluctantly I switched to Nd5+ Kd4 Qf2+. At first this seemed bad because it looks like after Kxd5 the king blocks the bishop and breaks the stalemate. But that's only temporary because after Qd4+ Kxd4 reestablishes the stalemate. The king can't run away after Qf2+: if Kc4 Nb6+ picks up the queen. Kd3 Qe3 kc2 qe2+ is a perpetual. Ke5 Qxb2+ Ke4? Nf6+.

Sep-23-16  mqhelisi: i struggled coz i couldnt find a closed ended continuation to

51. Kd3 i got spinning in the whirlwind of possible combinations but this line i saw it though

Sep-23-16  YouRang: Friday 50...?

click for larger view

This *has* to be a drawing tactic. I stared at it a good while before I noticed that white's queen and bishop has my (black) king immobilized. So:

- The objective must then be stalemate.

- My first move needs to be check, or else white can avoid stalemate.

I tried a few checks, but the only promising try is <50...Nd5+>, because 51.Bxd5 maintains the stalemate (I just have to force white to take my queen to escape checks, which shouldn't be hard).

I'm guessing <51.Kd4>, hoping to capture the knight with the king, which breaks the stalemate. Again, it took me while to realize that I can let the king have the knight! I just have to keep checking the king such that neither the bishop or queen can break free. So <51...Qxg4+!>

click for larger view

Now, if <52.Kxd5> then <52...Qd4+ 53.Ke6> trying to block the bishop <53...Qe5+ 54.Kf7 Qf6+ 55.Ke8 Qf8+!>

click for larger view

The stalemate is forced.


Of course, white shouldn't take the knight, but try to escape with <51.Kd3>. Again I stared at it for a while. Stalemate tactics force you to think opposite of normal chess. My biggest problem is that I have to get rid of both my knight and queen, and black doesn't want them!

I'm thinking that in this case, it's more about perpetual check than stalemate. So, assuming that white won't take my knight, I'll have to use it to keep white in check. So, <52...Qf3+>

click for larger view

Can the king escape checks? Not with 53.Kc4? Nb6+ forking K+Q

But without the escape at c4, I'm pretty sure I can prevent the king from getting away.

- If 53.Kd4, then ...Qe3+, preventing escape to c5.

- If 53.Kc2, then ...Qe2+, forcing the king to the first rank, where I can keep him locked up.

- If 53.Kd2, then ...Qe3+, forcing to first rank (or c2), again locking up the king.

Great twisty puzzle!

Sep-23-16  diagonalley: hmmmm... clearly stalemate is the only chance of salvation... but seeing how to force it is PDH
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