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Vladas Mikenas vs Alexander Alekhine
Buenos Aires Olympiad Final-A (1939), Buenos Aires ARG, rd 4, Sep-05
Horwitz Defense: General (A40)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
May-08-05  Calli: Mikenas could have tried 23.Nxf5! exf5 24.Bxc5 Qxc5 25.e6! with the threat of Qe5+ picking up the rook at g7

May-28-05  Hidden Skillz: how about rejecting exf5 and seizing the g file with both rooks at some point.. and with the h pawn rollin down too?
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: Good find, <Calli>!

<Hidden Skills>
<how about rejecting exf5 and seizing the g file with both rooks at some point>

Can you give more specifics? I wasn't able to find a good way to decline, because on 23. Nxf5 R anywhere 24. Bxc5 Qxc5 25. Nd6 and White gets a strong knight post, and I don't see any real attack for Black.

I also considered 23. Nxf5 Bb5 24. Bxc5 Qxc5 25. Qe3 Qxe3 26. Nxe3, and again White gets a strong knight post (Ne3-c2-d4) and I don't see Black's attack.

Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Morning: Mikenas missed another chance; 3.e4! transposes into the Tarrasch French, which Alekhine himself used to great effect (see his win over Capablanca, AVRO 1938). My experience was that it's always fun to use my opponents' weapons against them.
May-29-05  Hidden Skillz: <beatqiant> ye i didnt use a comp to double check.. i just thought it might be possible.. lookin at ur line its hopeless for black..
May-29-05  Hidden Skillz: but looking at this right now.. black can stop the check with.. f6.. 23.Nxf5 exf5 24.Bxc5 Qxc5 25.e6 f6! 26.exd7 Rgxd7.. but white has an advantage cos of better pawns..
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: An interesting ending.

It seems Alekhine didn't like 35...Rxb3 36. Rd7, for example 36...Rxb2+ 37. Kf3 a5 38. Rxf7 Rb6 39. Rxf5. That looks risky, but I haven't found a clear win for White then after 39...Rb6.

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: Black's queenside counterplay saved the day.

Is there anything better than the game plan with 37. g4? For example, what about moving the king toward the queenside first as in 37. Ke3 Rh2 38. Rd2 Rh3 39. Rg2 Kc6 40. Kd4? The idea is to prepare first for the breakthrough by limiting the queenside counterplay.

Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: <Calli: Mikenas could have tried 23.Nxf5! exf5 24.Bxc5 Qxc5 25.e6! with the threat of Qe5+ picking up the rook at g7 >

That's amazing. Well spotted, Calli.

I know we are all taught that Loose Pieces Drop off, <LPDO>, and in this position

click for larger view

...the rook at g7 is indeed loose. But both players must've thought, "It's loose but there is no way through to it - so let's just carry on..."

But I think a modern-day GM would've striven might and main to find a way to GET AT that rook on g7, and would have found

click for larger view


Then there might follow 23...exf5 24. Bxc5 Qxc5

click for larger view

25. e6! Bxe6 and now 26.Qe5+! .

Sep-13-21  tbontb: A tricky ending requiring accurate defence by Alekhine as Black. He first rejects 35....Rxb3 36.Rd7 Rxb2+ 37.Ke3 a5 38.Rxf7 a4 39.Rxf5 a3 40.e6 a2 41.Ra5 Kc7 as too dangerous. Later, he considers his 49....Kxb3 the best defence but overlooks the simple 49....Rxf7+ producing an immediate tablebase draw.

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