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Wolfgang Uhlmann vs Vasily Smyslov
Hastings (1972/73), Hastings ENG, rd 7, Jan-03
English Opening: King's English. Four Knights Variation Fianchetto Lines (A29)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Nov-23-15  bam68: What's wrong with Black playing 29...Qd5? It averts the mate threat by pinning the white queen and forces a queen trade with 30.Qxd5 cxd5.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: <bam68: What's wrong with Black playing 29...Qd5? It averts the mate threat by pinning the white queen and forces a queen trade with 30.Qxd5 cxd5.> The only problem with 29...Qd5 is that it doesn't save black from defeat. More or less forced continuation 30.Qxd5+ cxd5 31.e6 Nxd4 32.e7 Ne6 33.Re1 Nc7 34.Bf4 is absolutely hopeless for black.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Oxspawn: Yes, very easy. But getting your rooks and queen to play so nicely together is not very easy.
Nov-23-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: Tripled majors on a completely open file is generally a pleasant scenario for an attacker. Alekhine's gun reversed? Black's threat of Nxf3 should encourage white to force mate-in-3 starting with 30.Qf8+
Nov-23-15  dfcx: mate in 3, more than the average Monday's.

Black's game went downhill after 20.hxg5, destroying his own pawn structure, 20...Bxh5 followed by hxg5 would be better. Then he had a last chance to save game with 29.Qd5 forcing trading of queens.

Nov-23-15  mikrohaus: I would play 9...e3 with complications, because I'm not happy with Smyslov's position in a few moves at all after 9...ef.

After running 9...e3 through an engine [Fruit 2.1, because my other engines don't show up now after "upgrading" to W10], Black seems okay -- a little worse with best White moves, but okay, according to Fruit analysis.

My analysis: Black has to get compensation for the 2 bishops and 9...e3 is the only way to essentially force doubled-isolated c-pawns and clumsier White bishops than results after 9...ef. [French Defense/Nimzo-Indian players will know White will generally end up, at best, +0.5 from their experience in these types of positions if Black stays calm.] I equate Black as half-a-pawn down before 9...e3 anyway; so, why not complicate things?

Maybe somebody will analyze this try by Black w/ a better engine.

Nov-23-15  Chess Dad: Even on Monday, I normally expect at least a little bit of subtlety.

But not today. Today it is 100% brute force.

So although a mate-in-3 is perhaps a little longer than a typical Monday problem, as mentioned above, it is a rather obvious mate-in-3.

Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: Too easy, even for a Monday, IMO.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Mate on back row...and around the corner. Note how coy the previous king advance was!
Nov-23-15  Marmot PFL: The point of 29 Kg2 seems clear. Hard to believe that Smyslov would overlook that.
Nov-23-15  PivotalAnorak: mikrohaus on 9...e3: Kasparov vs Karpov, 1987
Nov-23-15  ASchultz: I remember seeing Uhlmann on the wrong side of a lot of great games. While I know he was a strong grandmaster, it's good to see him get a win with a cool PotD-worthy combination!
Nov-23-15  saturn2: I also think something went wrong in the opening for black and I dont like 11...Nd5 because it helps white to establish the pawnstructure c3,d4,e5.

Vaguely I am reminded of the Botvinnik-Capablance game where also white had a strong pawn center and finally attacked on the king side, whilst black was invanely trying some tricks with queen and knight on the queen side.

Nov-23-15  goodevans: <Honza Cervenka: ... 31.Bxe3 can be a slight improvement of this line for white.>

Bishops can take backwards as well? :o)

Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: <goodevans: <Honza Cervenka: ... 31.Bxe3 can be a slight improvement of this line for white.>

Bishops can take backwards as well? :o)>

Unfortunately, yes. Tricky bastards...:-)

Nov-23-15  mikrohaus: <PivotalAnorak>Thanks. Now I have to spend hours looking through opening materials to see how book compares to my initial thoughts. I didn't know 9...e3 was a known line, from a WCC no less.

I don't play the English and play a different system against it. However, it will be interesting to see how good players approach 9...e3 with White. Fruit 2.1 gives as best, but White never achieves better than +0.65 in any logical Black line.

Nov-23-15  TheFocus: Great Queen sacrifice!

Did this Smyslov guy ever accomplish much in chess?

Nov-23-15  mikrohaus: <TheFocus> Smyslov was WCC for about a year. He was also one of Kasparov's last hurdles before he finally won the WCC, although Smyslov (age 62) was past his prime at the time.

When you see the phrase "first among equals", supposedly uttered by Botvinnik referring to himself and other WCC contenders of the time, Smyslov was one of the equals.

Look in the database and you will find lots of great games by Smyslov. A good one is Smyslov-Botvinnik, 1954 WCC, Game 9.

He was especially good in the 1950s to early 1960s. He could probably take apart any lesser GM when he was 70 years old.

Nov-23-15  TheFocus: <mikrohaus> Oh! That Smyslov.
Nov-23-15  zb2cr: Definitely very easy. 30. Qxf8+, Rxf8; 31. Rxf8+, Kh7; 32. Rh1#.
Nov-23-15  mikrohaus: <TheFocus> Sorry, I missed your sarcasm earlier, but you might have been a noob to this particular master. Many are.
Nov-23-15  TheFocus: <mikrohaus> I think Smyslov was one of the greatest in history.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: I agree, he played against and equalled or won against another of the greatest, Botvinnik. Let's face it, Botters was champ on and off for a long time. He was disciplined yet played some beautiful games. In his 50s he drew with Fischer. Now Smyslov played both some great attacking and combinative games as well as wonderful "positional" games and endings. He is up there. It is significant that Fischer got on quite well with him. They were both quite big men also, when Smyslov was young he was reminiscent* (in appearance) to Fischer, and his style was also. His weak games, well we all play those, especially as he got older.

* reminiscent? (right word here, resembled? as in: "I resemble that remark.") But hats off to Uhlmann for this nice game!

Jan-07-16  PhilFeeley: Apparently, Uhlmann had an earlier queen sac that never happened:

From this position:

click for larger view

white could have played 22. Qa4! If black takes, then 23. Bxd5+ Kh8 (or g7) 24. Rf3 and mate cannot be stopped.

Jul-28-20  N.O.F. NAJDORF: I don't think Smyslov was in the right frame of mind at this tournament. It was only Category 9 and yet he drew three of his first five games in 18 moves. Two were with Stean and Hartston. He needed to play ... h6 one move earlier.
Smyslov does seem to have underestimated danger in the opening, as he did against Bronstein at Teeside. I don't think Fischer would have made similar mistakes. The fatal doubled pawns on g7 and g6 remind me of

Yates vs Reti, 1924

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