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Victor Mikhalevski vs Zurab Azmaiparashvili
11th ECC final (1995), Ljubljana SLO, rd 1, Nov-30
Modern Defense: Queen Pawn Fianchetto (A40)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jul-08-07  Guguni: wonderful pawn storm. Although Black could avoid it by not retreating with the bishop at move 27 I think. Simple fe could decrease the pawn pressure.
Sep-23-12  The Last Straw: Also 34...♖xc7? was a mistake. This strengthened the d5 pawn and allowed the pawns all to work together.
Sep-11-20  stacase: Hmmm, take the Bishop or one of the two Pawns? I chose to take e6. Three passed Pawns down the center of the board are probably worth more than the Bishop.
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: Should have been 26. White to Play. 26.f5 sets an excellent trap. Black should have played 27...fxe6, presenting a dilemma. Yes White should probably play the rational 28.Nxd2, but in my playing days 28.Ne5?! threatening 29.Rf7, 30.Rbf3, and either trying to attack the King or force through the d6 pawn would have tempted me.

Playing through the game offered a bit of amusement and bemusement. Usually when White launches such a central pawn storm, the Queens still remain on the board. 13...b5 doesn't look good; perhaps 13...e6 improves?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: For those interested, I do have a small collection of games with three (or more!) connected pawns on the seventh rank:

Game Collection: Pretty Maids All in a Ro: 3 Connected Ps on 7th

It hadn't been updated for a while, so I'm woring on hat right now.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Gregor Samsa Mendel: Although <The Last Straw> hasn't posted here in over four years, I'll just mention that all the alternatives to 34..Rxc7 are even worse.
Sep-11-20  Walter Glattke: Black thinks for 27.Nxc2 with equal material, I think for 27.d7 Rd8 28.Ne5 Be3+ 29.Rxe3 Nxe3 30.Rc1 Rxd7 31.Nxd7 exf5 32.Nxb6 Rxb2 33.d5 Rd2 34.Rc5 b4 good for black then C) 27.fxe6 fxe6 28.Ne5 Be3+ 29.Kg2 Ra7 30.d7 Rd8 no good continuation get this game explained, hah, hah, they played 27.fxe6 Bh6 but not the only option, that.
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White is one bishop down.

Black threatens Bb4, gxf5 and Rd8.

The advanced d-pawn suggests 27.fxe6:

A) 27... Bb4 28.d7 Rd8 29.Rxb4 fxe6 (28... Nxb4 29.e7 wins) 30.Rxb5 Rxd7 31.Ng5 with attack against the black pawns but probably not enough to win.

B) 27... Be3+ 28.Rxe3 looks similar to A.

C) 27... fxe6 28.Nxd2 Rd8 29.Ne4 with some edge.

I haven't found any forced winning path but I'd play 27.fxe6.

Sep-11-20  hdcc: To the victor go the spoils.
Sep-11-20  Brenin: After 28 ... Nxe7 29 dxe7 Ra7 30 Re1 Re8 31 Rxb5 Rxe7 32 Rxe7 Rxe7 33 Rxb6 Re2 Black is a P down, but has drawing chances.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Predrag3141: From the puzzle position 27 fxe6 was a necessary and obvious zwischenzug.

Black had ample opportunity to give the piece back with approximate equality until he stopped watching e7 with 30 ... Nf6. The puzzle could not be what to do then, because either of the two main alternatives -- 31 Ne5 or 31 Rxb6 -- is fine.

Black's best response was probably to forego the piece from the beginning with a clever zwischenzug of his own: 27 fxe6 Bb4 28 Rxb4 fxe6. White's rook is attacked, giving him no time to defend the pawn on d6 with Nd2-e4 or Ng5-e4.

Sep-11-20  mel gibson: I saw the first move in under 2 seconds -
go for a pawn storm to get a Queen.
However Stockfish 12 agrees
with the first move but calls it close to a draw.

27. fxe6

(27. fxe6 (f5xe6 ♗d2-b4 ♖b3xb4 f7xe6 ♖b4xb5 ♖c8-d8 ♖f1-c1 ♖d8xd6 ♖b5-b3 ♖a2-a7 ♔g1-f2 h7-h6 ♔f2-e2 g6-g5 ♖c1-c8+ ♔g8-g7 ♔e2-d3 ♖d6-d7 ♘f3-e5 ♖d7-c7 ♖c8-e8 ♖c7-e7 ♖e8xe7+ ♖a7xe7 ♘e5-c4 ♖e7-c7 ♖b3-b5 ♖c7-f7 ♔d3-e2 ♖f7-c7 ♘c4-e3 ♘d5xe3 ♔e2xe3 ♖c7-c2 ♖b5xb6 ♔g7-f7 ♖b6-b7+ ♔f7-f6 ♖b7-b8 ♖c2-g2 ♔e3-f3 ♖g2-d2 b2-b4 ♖d2-d3+ ♔f3-f2 ♖d3xd4 ♔f2-e3 ♔f6-e5) +0.15/40 312)

score for White +0.15 depth 40

Sep-11-20  Cellist: I struggled to decide between 27. fxe6 and d7. I slightly preferred 27. d7, to be followed by 27 ... Rd8; 28. fxe6 fxe6 [28. ... Bh6, 29. exf7+ with discovered check in case of 29. Kxf7]; 29. Ne5, with the plan to double the rooks on the f file, but none of the variations works out. Black gets a clear advantage.
Sep-11-20  saturn2: Instead of recapturing the piece by 27 Nxd2 play fxe6 was worth a try.
Sep-11-20  TheaN: White can obtain an initiative with <27.fxe6> but it's unlikely enough for the win. I'm a bit sloppy with the sac accept 27....Bh6 (as played) as I thought 28.exf7+?! had to be played but this gives Black chances after 28....Kxf7 29.Ne5+ Ke6 ⩱. After 28.d7! it's at least a draw.

What I don't see addressed in many posts is the point 27....Be3+, which seems to win a crucial tempo, but here 28.Rxe3! is good as 28....Nxe3? 29.d7 ⩲ and the central pawns evolve into battering rams, costing Black a rook, so material levels with White initiative.

Black dropped the ball definitely with 31....Nd7, but with 30....Nf6 he foregoes the most important defensive option, which it giving the knight back for the passed pawns. Whereas 31....Nd5 might hold, the pressure is on. Nice finish by White, but not won from the puzzle position.

Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Free give no?
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Victor meld rue Zurab no?
Premium Chessgames Member
  drollere: saving the bishop from capture (which only produces material equality) to allow linked, far advanced passed pawns (which will require a piece sacrifice to stop) is just a blunder.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Predrag3141: <drollere: saving the bishop from capture ... is just a blunder>

Letting the passed pawns stay on the board was the blunder. After 27 ... Bh6 and an eventual ... Nxe7, White gobbles up the b-pawns, netting a pawn, but Black's much better minor piece is almost full compensation.

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