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Jaan Ehlvest vs Garry Kasparov
Reykjavik World Cup (1988), Reykjavik ISL, rd 16, Oct-22
English Opening: King's English. Four Knights Variation Quiet Line (A28)  ·  0-1



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Given 28 times; par: 31 [what's this?]

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sac: 16...Nd4 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-22-07  IMDONE4: Ehlvest got crushed so fast he didn't know what happened to him... Wow... Kasparov wins in 25 moves as black in impressive style.
Aug-22-07  euripides: Interesting how effective Black's Bf5 is in this reversed Sicilian structure, when Bf4 is so rare for White in the Sicilian.
Nov-05-08  KingG: <euripides> I think it's pretty rare in the Sicilian for Black to have his Queen on c7 without having first played ...a6. And this is the detail that makes Bf5(Bf4) effective here. Also of course, if the bishop isn't on c3, then Bf5 would just run into e5.
Aug-23-10  sevenseaman: Perhaps being an Indian, I have always resented the way Kasparov haughtily got up and slammed the door after making a winning move during a World Championship against Anand. I still think that was brusque and reprehensible for a great chess player in the extreme.

.. 25. N e7+ took me a while to absorb as the last decisive move here.

Without even knowing what periods of inactivity may have marked the actual game, one feels a great sense of timing and a tempo in the style with which Garry executes each of his moves. As an exponent of the game K gets my total respect.

Form wise this perhaps was the peak period of Gazza's career!

Nov-23-10  brutalattack: Great games by kasparov....! Give white a disaster...
Oct-27-11  DrMAL: In this Olympiad crush white chose 4.e3 over more popular (and IMO better) 4.g3 and after 5.d3 position looks like hybrid between very quiet English line and somewhat sharper Nimzo. But after 6.d3 (poor compared with main move 6.Nd5 IMO) as position clears, on move 10 black seems to have advantage with more space and active pieces placement. This is potentially good game already to show N better than B, seven pawns remain for each side and W bishops are passive. 10...Qd6 resulted in loss but Kasparov stuck with 10...Bf5 that also had great results.

Apparently, 11.Rd1 was new move in this uncommon position (Opening Explorer) it seems difficult to imagine Ehlvest dreaming ambitiously here. Kasparov had many good options 11...a5 simply prevents b4. 12...Qe7 gets Q on better file and 13...a4 further ties up white's Q-side. After 15...Red8 defending N Kasparov's position was very solid and white really does not have anything other than draw, perhaps it should have been offered.

But Ehlvest played on with 16.Nd2 seemingly innocuous move to free B on e2 and maybe maneuver N to e4 or c4. But Kasparov noticed how sac 16.Nd4! gets advantage, after 17...Nf4! 18.Bf3 is basically forced and then after 18.Rxd4! either 19.Qc3 (best) or 19.Qc1 was mandatory with 19...Bxd3 coming (computer shows 19...Rad8 as maybe even better after 19.Qc3 this was not in my notes from analysis after game). 19.Qb5? loses to 19...c6! white Q has nowhere to go and 20.Bxc6 gives back piece with slaughter that was played, especially with 21...Qd8! best and winning move. After 22.Nf3 (best) Kasparov can win in several ways but chose 22...Rd6! strongest (23.Qc4 e4!). Ehlvest must have been in shock at genius of 17...Nf4! and each move that followed.

Oct-27-11  SimonWebbsTiger: @<DrMal>

the game is in Informator ref.46/28

Kasparov had intended 11. e4 Nf4 here.

White's moves at 14 and 15 both get "?!" and 16 a fat "?". GK suggested 14. Rc1, 15. Rfe1 and 16. d4 as better options.

On move 19, he suggests 19. Qc3 and gives both 19...Bd3 and 19...Rad8! (Garry's exclam).

Incidentally, it was not at the Olympiad (held in Thessaloniki, Greece) but Reykjavik. It was a category XV (2618) tourney with 18 players - those were the days! - where Kasparov finished first with 11/17 (+6=10-1), 0.5 point ahead of Beliavsky in 2nd spot.

Oct-27-11  DrMAL: Thanx <SWT> in a sense I am glad I do not have Informators it makes for more good kibitzing between us, and can help anyone reading our posts. My apology about tournament I must have been in twilight zone yes it was third Grandmasters Association World Cup that year, Kasparov was invited to all three of course but he did not play in first one, I believe Karpov won.

Regarding Garry's comments, I am very surprised to read 11.e4 Nf4?! that would be a mistake (12.exf5! gives white clear advantage) 11...Nxc3 is only good reply. I do not like 14.Be1 either, it preserves B but blocks in R of course. I would have played 14.Rfe1 first (with Rc1 likely soon), if 14...Nxc3 then 15.Qxc3 is fine for white. Maybe I should have marked as mistake I did not carefully look into what I thought was OK option 15.Nd2 to start free-up of position this does indeed have clear penalty (15...Nf4! 16.Ne4 Nxe2+ 17.Qxe2 f5! -/=).

15.Qc4 on the other hand seems fine, did he offer alternatives that he thought significantly better? I think 15.Rc1 is certainly better but cannot find any real consequence here. Already commented on 16.Nd2 Kasparov's tactical genius was stunning!

Oct-28-11  SimonWebbsTiger: @<DrMal>

interestingly, 11. e4 Nf4 doesn't appear to have been tested in high level chess. ECO A makes reference to a correspondence game from 1985. 11...Nxc3 12. bxc3= in case the line is unsound/refuted by the computer. You are indeed correct about Ehlvest's 11. Rd1 being a novelty at the time.

Kasparov's analysis runs:
<11. e4 Nf4 12. ef5 Nd4 13. Bd4 ed4 14. Ng1 Qd5 15. O-0-0 (only move) Qa2 16. Bf3 Qa1 17. Qb1 Qa5 18. g3 Nd5 with compensation>

Oct-28-11  DrMAL: <SWT> It is interesting line with 14...Qd5! instead of expected 14...Nxg2+ but 15.0-0-0 is not only response (equal) there is weird 15.Qd2 that computer gives white some edge, I will let it compute overnight before looking at lines, position is complicated. Either way, 11.e4 Nf4 is quite Kasparovian indeed.
Oct-28-11  siimens: SeanGGodley on youtube:
Oct-28-11  DrMAL: <siimens> Very good video, covers most lines. My only comment is, while pawn structure is obviously reversed Sicilian, pieces position is not typical, making analogy inaccurate.
Oct-29-11  DrMAL: Complicated positions take computer much more time, it took my Core i5 2500K system (4 threads) only four hours to reach depth 31/79 but then very long time to next level, nearly all computation was for 15.Qd2 (trillion positions) here it is.

Houdini_20_x64: 32/87 30:24:23 1,217,373,822,067

+0.30 15.Qd2 Nxg2+ 16.Kf1 Nh4 17.Qg5 Nxf5 18.Qf4 Re6 19.Bf3 Qb5 20.Rd1 Rf6 21.Qxc7 g5

0.00 15.0-0-0 Qxa2 16.Bf3 Qa1+ 17.Qb1 Qa5 18.Qc2 Qa1+

In Kasparov line, repetition is avoided by relying on white to go 18.g3?! instead of 18.Qc2 (or other move such as 18.Be4 to continue repetition) this is faulty logic, 18.g3?! gives black advantage via 18...Re5! 19.Rd2 Re1+ 20.Rd1 Qc5+ 21.Kd2 Re5 22.Rf1 Qb4+ 23.Kd1 Rae8 24.Be4 Nd5 but in Kasparov line with 18...Nd5?! instead, simply 19.Be4 gives white clear advantage, loss of B for P is not fully compensated.

Playing out more complicated 15.Qd2 line white has choices on move 22, black sac is not fully compensated there either. While Kasparov's 11.e4 Nf4 idea is interesting, it can be refuted this is difference between chess today and back then, we have very powerful engines to greatly help clarify.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: 19.Qc3! Bxd3 (19...Rad8!? 20.g3 Nh3+ 21.Kg2 Bxd3 22.Kxh3 Bxf1+ 23.Nxf1 Rxd1 24.Bxd1 Rxd1 25.Kg2) 20.g3 Nd5 21.Bxd5 Rxd5 22.Rc1 c6 23.Nc4 Rd4 24.Ne3 is far from lost for white.
Aug-15-18  whiteshark: The game has been annotated by "Raymond Keene" here:
Premium Chessgames Member
  saffuna: "Garry Kasparov's Fighting Chess" gives 25. Bc3? Ne2+ as the final moves.

Ehlest's play was awfully passive/defensive as white.

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