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Vasyl Ivanchuk vs Gata Kamsky
"A Million Ways to Die in the Sicilian" (game of the day Jun-16-2014)
Melody Amber Blind 3rd (1994) (blindfold), Monte Carlo MNC, rd 9, Apr-??
Sicilian Defense: Dragon Variation. Yugoslav Attack (B78)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Mar-12-08  cionics: Whitehat1963: After 22. Rd3, can't black still play Rxb3+?
Jul-24-08  FizzyY: farrooj, there's a variation in which Black sacs a queen for two bishops and is supposed to win.
Jul-24-08  FizzyY: and it's not like some 4 move forced mate.
Oct-10-08  Whitehat1963: It's desperate, but what happens if 27. Nxd7+? Can white find his way to a perpetual check?

Is this still one of the most difficult games in the Guess-the-Move database? Does anyone know which games are in the top 10 these days? Can someone list them?


Dec-22-08  FizzyY: Nxe7+ you mean? The knights on d5.
Nov-03-09  ahmadov: A great game! I got "outstanding" in the Guess the Move...
Apr-25-11  Whitehat1963: What's best play after 31. Rf1? I'm guessing 31...Bg2 and 32. Rg3. Is this correct? There must be something better on both sides, but I don't see it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: <Whitehat1963: What's best play after 31...Rf1?> 32. Rxh7, and if 32...Bxf1, then 33. Rh8+ Kg7 34. Qh6#.
Jun-16-14  master of defence: <al wazir>, After 31.Rf1, it's Black turn, not White's, besides ...Bxf1 is impossible due to Black's bishop being still on d5.

But i'm also unsure about how to proceed to achieve the win as Black there after 31.Rf1.

Jun-16-14  patfoley: after 31Rf1, Be4, 32 Rc1 Bxc2ch 33RxR, RxR 34 QxR QxR and black is several pawns up.
Jun-16-14  Rookiepawn:

click for larger view

18. e5 dxe5
19. Ne2 Rc7
20. Ng3 ...

click for larger view

Wouldn't this line be better for White? The Black P blocks both rank 5 and the long diagonal, so even counting on a check in c3 Black seems worse.

And if Black takes 18...Qxe5 I think the WK can safely venture to take the BR on c3...


Jun-16-14  patfoley: My first thought after 18e5 is just Rb3ch followed by Qxe5 with 3 pawns for the exchange. But things are complicated.
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: <master of defence: After 31.Rf1, it's Black turn>.

Sorry. I meant to write 31. Rf1 Bg2 32. Rxh7, etc.

Jun-16-14  vanderyacht: <But i'm also unsure about how to proceed to achieve the win as Black there after 31.Rf1.>

...Bg2 winning a rook

Jun-16-14  landogriffin: Great game; was looking at this in a book recently, but forget which one it was now...anybody got any ideas?!

Also, just a reminder to everybody: this was played 'blindfold'!!

Premium Chessgames Member
  sleepyirv: Of course, in the Yugoslav there's no way NOT to die.
Jun-16-14  john barleycorn: This line with the once spectacular Ne5-Nd3-Nxb2 manoeuvre by black was theory up to move 20 at least. Probably Ivanchuk's 22.Rd5 marks the point where his troubles began.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: White's game is lost, he has the exchange for FOUR pawns- including three connectors on the king-side.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ajk68: Again what's wrong with 22.g5, ?
22...Nh5 23. Nxh5 gxh5 24. g6!!

I think Black has to exchange the rook for the bishop to survive. This gets white back to equality or maybe a slight plus.

Jun-16-14  john barleycorn: <ajk68: Again what's wrong with 22.g5, ? 22...Nh5 23. Nxh5 gxh5 24. g6!! >

24....Qg7 and then ? I don't see more than a draw for white.

Premium Chessgames Member
  PawnSac: < vanderyacht: <But i'm also unsure about how to proceed to achieve the win as Black there after 31.Rf1.>

...Bg2 winning a rook >

Bg2 doesn't win a rook...

31. Rf1 Bg2 32. Rxh7 Bxf1 33. Rh8+ Kg7 34. Qh6#

and white also has 31. Rf1 Bg2 32. Rg3!

Jun-16-14  Rookiepawn: <john barleycorn: <ajk68: Again what's wrong with 22.g5, ? 22...Nh5 23. Nxh5 gxh5 24. g6!! > 24....Qg7 and then ? I don't see more than a draw for white.>

Well... a modest one, but an improvement anyway.

Jun-16-14  Rookiepawn:

click for larger view

What if 22. Nxg6. ? That would prevent 23 ... Rxb3+ 24. axb3 Rc8 because of the check in e7; and White's g5 would become nastier for Black.

Though not clear to me, I like the colourful position:

click for larger view

Black can continue 23 ... Rxb3+ 24. axb3 fxg6 but then 25. g5 ...

...and no more h5 for the BN. The initiative would be lost for Black.

Jun-16-14  Rookiepawn: Oh no, my mistake: still damn h5 for the BN and the WQ is trapped...

Still I like the BN bold seppuku... Damn I need a board...

Jun-17-14  john barleycorn: <Rookiepawn>

Here is a game in the main line with 18.g4

Mecking vs S Joksic, 1971

In this line after 18.g4 Nf6 19.g5? is a mistake according to an analysis by Despotovic:

19.g5 Nh5 20.Rxh5 Rxb3 21.ab3 gh5 22.f4 Rc8 23.f5 Qc3 24.Kb1 Qe3

Ivanchuk deviates with 18.Ne2 from the above game.

The programmatic continuation with 22.g5 can take this route:

22.g5 Nh5 23.Nxh5 gh5 24.Rxh5 Qg7 25.Rdh1 Qxh6 26.Txh6 Rxg5 27.Rxh7 Rf8 28.Rh8 Kg7 appears to be a perpetual.

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