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Svetozar Gligoric vs Paul Keres
YUG-URS (1958), Zagreb CRO, rd 3, Jun-25
Nimzo-Indian Defense: Huebner Variation (E41)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Keres played 16...h6 previously in this little match with Gligoric (They played four games with the result 2:2 on the 1st chessboard in the match Yugoslavia - SU). The game ended after few moves as draw (see Gligoric vs Keres, 1958) and Keres was afraid of probable Gligoric's strenghtening of line played before. So he tried to escape that by playing 16...Nh5 but it seems to be not very good idea. Gligoric beat him quickly in great style.
Oct-08-02  drukenknight: 25...Bxg2 appears at first glance to save it, haven't studied it much.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: 25...Bxg2 26. Bxg6 and mate soon to follow
Oct-09-02  drukenknight: simpler is 25...Rxe6 to stop Sneaky's mate threat.

The reason I think 25...Qh6 is wrong is that black has just fallen behind in material, he can't give the tempo back to white AND be down in material. You cant fall behind in two departments and expect to hold the game.

How do we know black is behind in material? At black's 25th he has 4 connected pawns to 3, but there is a passed pawn for white. I'll count the passed pawn as 1 1/2 but you can just say it's something more than 1 pt.

Okay sometimes you can fall behind in BOTH tempo and material if you are able to sack material in order to gain a mating attack, that can happen. Which essentially means you trade material in order to gain position (ie a mating position).

So maybe there is a mate for black in there. We'll have to check for that.

Okay, if there is no mating net for black, then it seems black must regain material in order to keep the balance.

25...gxh5 does get back material (B v 2P) but we said white was up by 1 1/2, so it would be white up by a fraction of material AND having the move if we do that. Doesnt seem correct.

Okay what about Rxe6, seems simplest and it also stops the Bxg6 threat.

Hmmm, 26 Rxe6 Nxe6 and material remains even for the moment.

27 Bxg6 what then?

INteresting, there must be a save in here.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: 25...Rxe6 26.Rxe6 Nxe6 27.Bxg6 with mate soon to follow
Oct-09-02  drukenknight: Wait a second! Lets try this: 25....Qe7
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: 25...Qe7 26.Qg3
Oct-09-02  drukenknight: 26...g5
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: 27.Qe5
Oct-09-02  drukenknight: Good move! Lets try again 25...f4
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: 25...f4 26.Bxg6
Feb-07-06  Resignation Trap: According to Gligoric, 26...f4 was a result of time pressure. "Keres and myself were friends but it was not until the tournament at San Antonio 1972 that he told me that this was the only time he had ever overlooked a mate in one. On the other hand, over the years, this 'mate' was to cost me quite a few defeats in subsequent encounters against my very gentlemanly rival..."
Feb-07-06  Jim Bartle: Gligoric seems to have been a pretty friendly guy in general. He played a candidates' match against Tal in Belgrade one year. There was a France-Yugoslavia World Cup qualifier one day, so they both called a rest day and went to the game together.
Feb-22-06  RookFile: White's two bishops were really two carving knives that totally cut open black's position.
Jan-28-07  morphyvsfischer: This game is a great example of the power of hanging pawns. 8 Na4 should be played. As Honza mentioned, 16...Nh5 is bad because the knight is undefended. The idea was, of course, to bash it into f4 to exchange the light squared bishop or drive it to f1. 16...b5 is not met by 17 c5, but 17 Ba5. 17...exd5 18 Nd4! threatens to eat the h5 knight as well as Nf5-e7+. 19...Qf4 20 Nxf7! (Bxh5 Qxg5 21 Qd4 f6 is unclear, since if 22 Rg3, 22...e5!) ...Qxf7 21 Bxh5, since 22 Qd4 is coming, and 21...gxh5 dies to 22 Rg3+ Kf8 23 Rf3.

21 Qxg7+ does give black drawing chances; 22 g4 does not threaten 23 gxh5 because of 23...Nf5. An improvement for Black is 22...Bxd5 23 cxd5 Rxd5 24 Bf3, when white will win but Black does not make it a miniature. 22...Rd6 23 Rae1 Re8 24 Bxg7 Qxg7 25 Qg3 wins.

Jul-11-07  micartouse: Soltis gives 17. d5 two exclamation marks, but this seems like an exaggeration since pushing the d-pawn and threatening kingside sacs is pretty standard in such a position. At any rate, it is a very nicely executed attack.
Dec-12-22  generror: I'm really not much of a chess player, and I lazily went through the moves, but when i saw 18...g6, I just went "ouch!". IDK, but that's just giving away your dark squares in just in front of your king, and that with the opponent's bishop conveniently look at them, full of interest :)

Really weird for someone like Keres to do such a thing. (Apart from overlooking a mate in 1, of course.)

Premium Chessgames Member
  Williebob: <generror>, 18.. g6 not so weird when you consider alternatives; what else is there? Black's knight on h5 is hanging (confirming <Honza>'s doubts about 16.. Nh5), and White is about to throw the whole house at the kingside.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Believe Soltis published this game in one of his works during the 1970s; the back story of 'fear of an improvement' syndrome is of interest, in the manner of that classic example of the genre Gligoric vs Fischer, 1970.

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