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Paul Keres vs Alexander Alekhine
AVRO (1938), The Netherlands, rd 12, Nov-24
Caro-Kann Defense: Panov Attack. Modern Defense Carlsbad Line (B13)  ·  1/2-1/2

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-28-04
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Chessgames.com, last move of this game was not 62...Rf4, but 62...Rc5. Of course, 62...Rf4?? would be a terrible mistake for 63.Rf7 (threatening 64.b6) 63...Rb4 64.Rxf5

47.Nc6 Rxa2+ 48.Kg3 would have been probably better.

Jul-14-04  Calli: <Honza> Thanks. Look at the position after 41.Rd5 This must be a win for White, no? In fact, why not 42.Nxa7 Ra8 43.Nb5 (if 43...Rxa2? 44.c6 Rc2 45.c7 etc)
Jul-15-04
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <In fact, why not 42.Nxa7 Ra8 43.Nb5> Black can then reply 43...d2 44. Rxd2 Bxb5.
Jul-15-04  Calli: On 42.Nxa7 Ra8 43.Nb5 d2 44.Nc3 should win. Maybe Nc3 is what Keres missed?
Jul-16-04
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <On 42.Nxa7 Ra8 43.Nb5 d2 44.Nc3 should win. Maybe Nc3 is what Keres missed?>

It looks like you're right that Black has no draw after 42. Nxa7.

But since Keres had a clear advantage and his opponent was a super calculator like Alekhine, maybe he just wanted to avoid any potential complications and neutralize the Black pawn with his 42. Kf2.

It looks to me like White could still win easily with 43. h3. Both Black's a-pawn and d-pawn would be vulnerable.

Jul-01-05  troll007: <Calli: On 42.Nxa7 Ra8 43.Nb5 d2 44.Nc3 should win. Maybe Nc3 is what Keres missed?> You right, Keres writted later, that 42.Nxa7 Ra8 43.Nb5 was one of easiest way to win. Even later in party Keres can win. His 52.Rc4 was wrong, he must play 52.Rd4! Rc2 53.b5 Rc5 54.Rb4 Kd8 55.b6 Kc8 56.b7+ Kb8 57.Rb6 and Black has no defence against Ra6, Ra8 and Rc8
Nov-19-12  LUCHO RODRI: Keres ganaba si en vez de 52.Rc4?? hubiera hecho 52. Rd4! porque aislaba sus peones avanzados del rey enemigo!
Jan-01-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: The tournament book gives 47 Nb5..Rxa2+ 48 Kg3..Bf5 49 Rd4 as being an improvement over Keres 47 Rd4?!.

Smyslov gives the winning line as 52 Rd4..Rc2 53 b5..Rc5 54 Rb4..Kd8 55 b6..Kc8 56 b7+..Kb8 57 Rb6..f5 58 Ra6.

Jan-30-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  harrylime: <Calli: On 42.Nxa7 Ra8 43.Nb5 d2 44.Nc3 should win. Maybe Nc3 is what Keres missed?>

Black gets play with Ra2 ect .. but agree this must be winning for Keres !

How did Keres not win this game ??

At move 42 virtually ANY knight move wins ..

42.Na7 has to win !
42.Nd8 cuts off the black king and rook whilst Keres can focus on queening his c pawn ect.. 42 Ne7+ taking the Knight to f5 and e3 ect
42.Nd4 just attacking the black bishop...

I can only assume it was Alekhines' aura that meddled with Keres' comfort zone over the board here.

Jun-23-19
Premium Chessgames Member
  g15713: In their masterpiece, Comprehensive Chess Endings Volume 5 Rook Endings by Yuri Averbakh (Author) and Nikolai Kopayev (Author) and Kenneth P. Neat (translator) 1987, the following diagram 722 on page 276 was analyzed.


click for larger view

After 51. c6 Ke7 was played, it led to the following diagram:


click for larger view

<"We will now consider White's best continuation:">

52 Rd4! (FinalGen has this as the only move to win) 52...Rc2

(52...Rb2 is met by 3 Kd3 Rb1 4 Kc2 Ra1 5 c7 Ra8 6 b5)

53 b5 Rc5 54 Rb4! <"The best move!"> (54 Rd7+ also wins)

54...Kd8 55 b6 Kc8 56 b7+ Kb8 57 Rb6 f5 58 Ra6 <"and wins.">

Chess user <troll007> in an above post basically had the same analysis...

By cutting off Black's king from White's passed pawn(s) was the key to winning and is of great importance in many types of rook endings.

For a comparable game related to both sides have connected passed pawns see: Aronian vs Kramnik, 2018

Apr-11-22  Olavi: This game is famous for Keres' behaviour during adjournment. Some friends had arrived from Estonia and wanted to spend the evening with Keres. He obliged, didn't analyze... well he should have won even so, but can you imagine Botvinnik doing something like that?!?

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