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Leonid Stein vs Larry Evans
Amsterdam Interzonal (1964), Amsterdam NED, rd 17, Jun-11
Spanish Game: Morphy Defense. Breyer Defense Quiet Variation (C94)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-29-06  Albertan: Stein finished in 5th place in the 1964 Amsterdam Interzonal with 16.5/23 (losing to Bronstein and Portisch).These losses really hurt Stein because at the end of the tournament he was only one -half point out of first place. Four players (all with scores of 17/23 had tied for first! (Smyslov won on a tie-break over Larsen, Spassky and Tal.) Evans finished in 14th place in this Interzonal with 10/23.
Aug-29-06  Albertan: The move 9...Nb8 is credited to Breyer.Gyula Breyer (April 30, 1893 – November 9, 1921) was a Hungarian chess player. He was a leading member of the hypermodern school of chess theory, which favored controlling the center with pieces on the wings. The Breyer Variation was supposedly suggested by Gyula Breyer in an unpublished manuscript in the 1920s, but no such document has been discovered and there are no known game scores in which Breyer employed this line. It is unclear how Breyer's name came to be associated with this variation, but the terminology is well established. The Breyer Variation did not become popular until the 1960s when it was adopted by Spassky and others. By playing ...Nb8 Evans frees the c-pawn and intends to route the knight to d7 where it supports e5.
Aug-29-06  Albertan: In this game Stein plays a less frequently played continuation on move 10.The main variation of the Breyer continues with the move 10.d4.

The move 10...c5 is also rarely played at the top levels of chess.Usually Black plays 10...Nbd7.

Black's fourteen move was designed to open up and win control of the open d-file. It would have been interesting if Stein had played 16.Nd5!? instead of 16.Qe2. If 16.Nd5!? play might continue: 16...Qd6 17.Bg5 Bb7 18.a4 b4 19.Qd3 h6 20.Bh4 g5 21.Bg3 Nh5 22.Bh2 Nf4 23.Bxf4 gxf4

Aug-29-06  Albertan: Another idea on move 18 was to play 18.Ng5!? and White would gain an advantage after:

18. Ng5!? Bd7 19. Nd5 Qd6 20. axb5 axb5 21. Rd1 h6 22. Nf3 g5 23. Be3 g4 24. Nxe7+ Qxe7 25.hxg4 Nxg4 26. Rd5 c4 27. Bc5 Qe8

On move 19 Evans could have played 19...Bf8 instead of 19...h6. If he had this variation is possible: 19...Bf8 20.Qf3 Bg7 21.Nd5 Qd6 22.Be3 h6 23.Be3 h6 24.Nxf6+ Qxf6 25.Qxf6 Bxf6 26.Nf3 Be7 27.Bxh6 f6 28.Red1 Rxd1 29.Bxd1 Bb7

Aug-29-06  Albertan: On move 24 for White another idea is to play 24.f3 after which play might continue: 24...Bd6 25.Qxg5 Qc7 26.Ra7 Rd7 27.Be3 Be7 28.Qg4 Bd6

On move 25 Stein plays the interesting and temporary exchange sacrifice which weaken the dark squares around the Black king.

Aug-29-06  Albertan: It appears the Evans made the mistake which cost him the game on move 29 When he played 29...Qg7? which allowed Stein to play 30.Be3!

On move 29 Evans could have played 29... c4 and after 30.Be8+ Qg7 31. Bxb5 Rd1+ 32. Kh2 Bd5 33. Bd6 Rd2 34. Ba3 f5 equalized the position.

On move 30 Evans could have played the interesting pawn sacrifice 30...Bc6!? After the sacrifice 31.Bxf7+ !? play might continue 31... Kxf7 32. Qc7+ Rd7 33. Qxc6 Kg6 34. Qxb5 Rd1+ 35. Kh2 Qc7+ 36. g3 Qe5 37. Qb3 Qd5 38. Qxd5 Rxd5 with Stein in the driver's seat.

Jan-26-16  jerseybob: <Albertan: Black's fourteen move was designed to open up and win control of the open d-file.> What it actually did was land black in a known Lopez variation with white having the added move Ne3. Since Evans around this time was working on MC0-10, a pretty surprising mistake. Gufeld suggests 14..d4!
Apr-27-22  fokers13: I thought h4-h5-h6 was an interesting idea even though it was definitely not the puzzle move,apparently black can defend with Bc6-e8.
Apr-27-22  Brenin: 31 Bf7+ wins the exchange, e.g. 31 ... Kxf7 32 Qc7+ picks up the Black Q or R (note that the R is captured with check or with the K on g6 blocking Black's Qxg2 mate). If 31 ... Kf8 then 32 Bc5+ leads to similar lines. If 31 ... Kh7 then 32 Qh4+ Qh6 3 Qxh6 mate. If 31 ... Kh8 then 32 Qh4+ Qh7 33 Qxf6+ Qg7 34 Qxe8+ with a similar mate to follow.
Premium Chessgames Member
  raymondhow: I got the important moves, though it took me too long. Then varied from the game with 34.Qd6, which doesn't make much difference.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ajk68: These types of games irk me. There is still a lot of play left in the game to demonstrate the win. If it can be simplified to an opposite bishop endgame, there are generally lots of drawing chances, despite the material difference.

Even if the theoretical position is a win, people make mistakes.

Apr-27-22  mel gibson: I saw that within 10 seconds.

Stockfish 15 says:

31. Bf7+

(31. Bf7+(♗g6-f7+ ♔g8xf7 ♕g3-c7+ ♔f7-g8 ♕c7xd8+ ♕g7-f8 ♕d8-d7 ♕f8-f7 ♕d7-c8+ ♕f7-f8 ♕c8-f5 ♔g8-f7 ♕f5xb5 ♕f8-d8 ♕b5xc4+ ♗a8-d5 ♕c4-d4 ♕d8-d7 c3-c4 ♗d5-e6 ♕d4xd7+ ♗e6xd7 ♔g1-h2 ♔f7-g6 ♔h2-g3 ♔g6-f5 h3-h4 ♗d7-e8 f2-f3 ♗e8-f7 c4-c5 ♗f7-e8 ♗e3-d4 ♔f5-e6 ♔g3-f4 ♔e6-f7 g2-g4 ♔f7-e7 b2-b4 ♗e8-b5 ♔f4-g3 ♔e7-e6 h4-h5 ♗b5-e8 ♔g3-h4 ♗e8-b5 f3-f4 f6-f5 g4-g5) +13.16/40 816)

score for White +13.16 depth 40.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White has a bishop and two pawns for a rook.

The rook is defenseless. This suggests 31.Bf7+:

A) 31... Kxf7 32.Qc7+

A.1) 32... Ke8(6) 33.Qxg7 + - [Q+2P vs r].

A.2) 32... Kf8 33.Qxd8+ Kf7 34.Qxa8 + - [B+2P].

A.3) 32... Kg8 33.Qxd8+ Qf8 34.Qb6 + - [2P] (34... Qg7 35.Qb8+ Qf8 36.Qxb5 Qg7 37.Qe8+ Qf8 38.Qe6+ and 39.Qg4).

A.4) 32... Rd7 33.Qxd7+ Kg8 (33... Kg6 34.Qe8+ or 33... Kf8 34.Qd8+ and 35.Qxa8) 34.Qe8+ Qf8 35.Qxb5 as above.

B) 31... Kf8 32.Bc5+ Kxf7 33.Qc7+ Kg6 34.Qxd8, + - [2P], must be winning. For example, 34... Qb7 35.Qg8+ Kh5 (35... Kh6 36.Be3+ Kh5 36.Qg4#; 35... Qg7 36.Qxa8 + - [B+2P]) 36.g4+ Kh4 (36... Kh6 37.Be3#) 37.Qh8+ Kg5 38.Be3+ Kg6 39.Qg8+ Qg7 40.Qxa8.

C) 31... Kh7 32.Qh4+ Qh6 33.Qxh6#.

D) 31... Kh8 32.Qh4+ Qh7 33.Qxf6+ Qg7 34.Qxd8+ Kh7 35.Qh4+ Qh6 36.Qxh6#.

Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: The cleverest move might consist of 30.Be3, setting the trap into which Black falls. What would White have played after 30...Rc8?
Apr-27-22  saturn2: 31.Bf7 Kxf7 (Kh7 Kh8 32.Qh4 etc or Kf8 32 Bc5+) 32..Qc7 wins the exchange and white has more pawns
Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: <ajk68: These types of games irk me. There is still a lot of play left in the game to demonstrate the win.> I'm with you there. I'm surprised's algorithm can't come up with something clear cut for a Wedesday.
Apr-27-22  Lambda: I spent a while worrying about how strong the black counterattack after 33...Kh7 is before I noticed the bishop is en prise.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sastre: <An Englishman: Good Evening: The cleverest move might consist of 30.Be3, setting the trap into which Black falls. What would White have played after 30...Rc8?>

30...Rc8 31.Bh6 Qxh6 32.Bf5+.

Apr-27-22  TheaN: <31.Bf7+ Kxf7> alternatives fair worse, king to the h-file loses to Qh4+, Kf8 to Bc5+. <32.Qc7+ Kg6> also here alternatives fair worse, moving away from the queen QxQ +-, 32....Kf8 33.Qxd8+ with Qxa8 +-. Only 32....Kg8 is reasonable, as after 33.Qxd8 Qf8 Black's protecting Ba8, and trading queens is probably not winning here. That said, White has the move and the Black queen is displaced. <33.Qxd8 Bc6 34.Bd4 +-> and White has the better piece and pressure on a dark squared weak point.

Having said that, Black survived to an opposite colored bishop ending -2P. At the time of text resignation, 35....Bd5 evaluates at +3.3. This makes me believe White can win another pawn soon, but I'd tried this for a while as Black.

Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: Push mucker Bf7 its ace?
Apr-27-22  AlicesKnight: Found the main game-line. <chrisowen> sums it up well. A 'won game'.
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: Took me a while -- I was trying to make Bh6 work.

<ajk68: These types of games irk me. There is still a lot of play left in the game to demonstrate the win. If it can be simplified to an opposite bishop endgame, there are generally lots of drawing chances, despite the material difference.>

I think it's OK -- there's a clear best move in the position at the diagram that leads to a winning advantage, even if the win is not straightforward. A lot of Jacob Aagaard's puzzles are like that. And it's realistic -- these are the sorts of things we need to be able to see in our own games.

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