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Wolfgang Unzicker vs Borislav Ivkov
Second Piatigorsky Cup (1966), Santa Monica, CA USA, rd 9, Jul-31
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf. Opocensky Variation Traditional Line (B92)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Dec-30-14  zydeco: Ivkov's notes to this game are pretty funny.

On move 18, he writes: "The threat of 19.Rxd6 could be averted in three ways. They are 18....Rc6, 18...Bxf5, and 18....g6. The first move, though I do not know exactly why, I declined immediately, and the second one I did not like after quick consideration, for the simple reason that I was not compelled to give up the bishop-pair, especially not the guardian of the square d5. Then, by elimination, I came to the conclusion that the only good reply was 18....g6. And then an absurd and sudden idea put into disorder all the logic of my consideration, and I began to wonder why the immediate 18....g6. The pawn is pinned and does not threaten anything. Better first 18....Kh8 and then 19....g6! For just a second I forgot that in this position it is white who is threatening. All this on one move!"

And then on move 19: "Besides the loss of the pawn, the position of the knight is less secure. A vital point in the mechanism of black's position is missing. Therefore, if it was not much too early to resign, if the instinct of self-preservation was not so strong, and in addition if the rules did not forbid it, I would have thrown the pieces to the most distant corner of the playing room. Actually, I recalled the story about Alekhine who, after a lost game, threw his king far away. Though I am far from Alekhine's genius, I could understand him at that moment."

On move 25: "Now again came time trouble because after the 18th move I allowed the clock to go along, thinking about chess in general, its laws and injustices, asking for the best chances in the unpleasant position. Now I want just a little more time."

Ivkov managed to get close to a drawing position and then, in time trouble, threw it away with 68....Kf7 (better ....Kh6) and 69....Ng6 (better 69....Rb4).

Ivkov on move 69: "A typical example of a change in the order of moves. In my mind I had already played the intended 69.....Rb4. With the text move, the game is lost immediately. After the 'crime' on move 18, black succeeded in delaying the 'punishment' for almost ten hours, only to reverse his moves at the end and come to a lost position. Can you tell then that a chess game reminds us so much of daily life?"

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