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Efim Geller vs Mikhail Tal
USSR Championship (1976), Moscow URS, rd 16, Dec-21
Sicilian Defense: Scheveningen. Classical Variation (B84)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jul-08-05  farrooj: 19.Rf2 "A move dictated by the soul of a chess artist" - Tal

I didn't get the move, what is the purpose of it?

Mar-22-06  pallab1234: No purpose, GM commentries are there to put others down...
Mar-22-06  HannibalSchlecter: 19 Rf2 I can take a guess in that it stops black from pinning the other rook if BxB RxB, and then Qc5 is slightly annoying, but now that he plays 19 Rf2, if BxB RxB, now that rook is free to swing over to the kingside for attack.
Aug-14-06  ughaibu: This is the correct score, Geller vs Tal, 1976 is incorrect.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheAlchemist: Comments from Chessmaster:


Some drawn games are endowed with enough fantasy and unheard melodies to please those who value not only results but beauty. Here, Geller's unexpected 19th move, although inferior, caused his opponent to note it was dictated "by the soul of a chess artist."


"I expected 19. Nxd7 Qxd7 20. Bxc5 Qc6 regaining the piece. But after considerable thought Geller made another move, dictated, as soon becomes clear, by the soul of a chess artist. I must confess that this came as a surprise. At first I examined a continuation which seemed satisfactory: 19...Bxd4 20. Rxd4 Nxe5 21. Rh4 Rfd8 (not 21...Ng6 or Qc5 22. Qxh6!! leads to mate) and here, to my horror, I noticed 22. Qg5!! White would force immediate capitulation. Of course, to be co-author of such a work of art would have been honorable, but I nevertheless declined. It would have been a terribly crushing defeat" -- Tal. Yet in his notes, Geller pointed out that simply 19. Kh1! is stronger.


It is here that White's 19th move becomes important! With his king on h1 23. Bd3!! would now be decisive.


But not 23...Nxe5? 24. Rh3 forces mate. Or 23...Bxd3 24. Bxd3. Draw agreed. White must take the perpetual check by 24. Rg3 Bg6 25. Qxg6 Kh8 26. Qh6, etc. But 24. Rxd4? Bg6 25. Rh4 is parried by Qxe5.

Apr-25-08  ughaibu: Does anyone know where Tal's comment was published?
Jan-05-09  WhiteRook48: I don't get why this is a draw.
May-23-10  Xeroxx: Rg3 Bg6 RxB fxg Qxg kh8 Qh6 kg8 Qg6 etc etc...
Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: <ughaibu> The Application of Chess Theory by Geller
Mar-14-20  NimzoWitch: The game is featured in the 2019 movie "The Coldest Game"

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