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Mikhail Tal vs Duncan Suttles
"Duncan Go Nuts" (game of the day Aug-13-2008)
Sukhumi (1972), Sukhumi URS, rd 7, Aug-24
Modern Defense: King Pawn Fianchetto (B06)  ·  1-0



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Given 35 times; par: 65 [what's this?]

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sac: 27.Bxa5 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Be still, my beating heart. For a minute I thought I had solved a Saturday, but then realised that I had seen it before.

I thought it looked familiar!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: Wow! I blogged about this game over 7 years ago.

Anyway, there is a kind of interesting winning line to work through if black plays 30...f6 to avoid 31 Qg5.

click for larger view

Sep-12-15  th3doctor: Wow Jim, there are some nice lines after 30...f6. For example 30...f6 31. exf6 Kf7 32. Rd8 Nb6 33. Ne5+ Qxe5 34. Rxf8+ Kxf8 35. Qd8+ is mating. Also after 31. exf6 Qf7 32. Qd8 black has no way to prevent Ne5 from winning. On 31... Ra6 there is 32. Qh6 Qf7 33. Ng5 mating
Sep-12-15  Helios727: What would happen if black played 34... Qc7 ?
Premium Chessgames Member
  gawain: Too deep for me. Like darthstapler, I saw the start of the combination right up to 29...Qc7 but not the follow up. I thought that after 30 Re8 Black would be able to play ...Qd7 and survive. I guess that he would end up a pawn down, which would not be viable at this level.
Sep-13-15  The Kings Domain: Good pun. :-)

Got the right move, though my calculations afterward certainly didn't harmonize with the actual game (heh).

Typical Tal sacrifice, intuitive more than deeply planned out and always interesting.

Sep-13-15  morfishine: Another lame play on word. Not that it isn't clever, which it is; but the play on word "Duncan go nuts" would be much more effective if used in a Suttles victory [ie: Suttles went nuts on his opponent]...Uh, ahem, hello, Suttles actually lost this game....
Sep-13-15  Dr. Overlord: <morphinist> Yes. Not a very Suttle pun..
Apr-15-17  morfishine: Other variations to the Modern defense are the 'Monkey's Bum' where White aggressively tries for an early win with 1.e4 g6 2.Bc4 Bg7 <3.Qf3>

...and the more seriously received 'Monkey's Bum deferred' defined by 1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 3.Nc3 c6 4.Bc4 d6 and now <5.Qf3>

IM Povah was exploring these odd move sequences and showed it to his friend expert-rated Kenneth Coates.

Coates replied "If that works, then I'm a monkey's bum!"

It worked and the name stuck



Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <morf>, there was an article on the <Monkey's Bum> published in the British Chess Magazine--believe it was in 1978.
Apr-16-17  morfishine: <perfidious> Thanks, I like looking into oddball variations so I can spring something over at ChessCube

This one looks really interesting


Feb-02-18  ColdSong: Same to say as chrisowen about 27.Ba5!!.
Jul-14-19  agb2002: Recycled.
Jul-14-19  agb2002: In the final position 41.Nf6+ Kg7 42.Qe8, threatening 43.Nd7, ends up winning a lot more material.
Jul-14-19  SpamIAm: <Helios727>, sorry that you had to wait almost four years for a reply, but after 34...Qf7 white would reply 35.Nxe6 winning the store. 35...fxe6 results in 36.Qxf8#, while 35...Qxd8 36.Nxd8 is much like the game, except that white has won an additional pawn. 35...Ra6 or any other queen move such as 35...Qa5/b6/c6 is met by 36.Rxf8#.
Jul-14-19  mel gibson: I didn't see that.
Stockfish 10 did & says:

27. Bxa5

(27. Bxa5 (♗e1xa5 ♘a4xb2 ♕e2xb2 ♕c6-a4 ♖d1-d8+ ♖a8xd8 ♗a5xd8 ♕a4-d1+ ♔g1-h2 ♕d1xd8 ♕b2xb7 ♕d8-a5 ♕b7-b8+ ♗g7-f8 ♕b8-b3 ♕a5-c7 a3-a4 ♗f8-e7 g2-g3 ♔g8-f8 ♕b3-b5 ♗e7-d8 ♔h2-g2 ♔f8-g7 ♕b5-a6 g6-g5 ♕a6-a8 h7-h5 ♘f3-d2 h5-h4 g3-g4 ♔g7-h7 ♘d2-f3 ♔h7-g6 ♕a8-a6 ♔g6-g7 ♔g2-h2 ♕c7-b8 ♕a6-b5 ♕b8-a8 ♔h2-g2 ♕a8-a7 ♕b5-c6 ♕a7-a5 ♕c6-d7 ♕a5-a8 ♕d7-e8 ♕a8-a5 ♕e8-c6 ♔g7-g6 ♕c6-b5 ♕a5-c7 ♔g2-f1 ♔g6-g7 ♔f1-e2 ♔g7-f8 a4-a5 ♕c7xa5 ♕b5xa5) +2.14/43 121)

score for White +2.14 depth 43.

However -
it's a clever trick because if Black takes the Bishop with 27...Rxa5 then:

28. Rd8+

(28. Rd8+ (♖d1-d8+ ♗g7-f8 ♕e2-d2
♕c6-c7 ♖d8-e8 ♔g8-g7 ♕d2-f4 ♕c7-e7 ♖e8xe7 ♗f8xe7 ♕f4-d2 b7-b6 b2-b3 ♔g7-f8 b3xa4 ♖a5xa4 ♕d2-d3 ♖a4-a8 ♕d3-b3 ♗e7-d8 ♘f3-d2 ♗d8-c7 ♘d2-e4 ♗c7xe5 ♕b3xb6 ♖a8-c8 ♘e4xc5 ♗e5-a1 ♘c5-d7+ ♔f8-e8 ♕b6-b5 ♖c8-d8 ♘d7-f6+ ♔e8-f8 ♘f6xh7+ ♔f8-g8 ♘h7-g5 ♗a1-f6 ♘g5-e4 ♗f6-e7 a3-a4 f7-f5 ♘e4-c5 ♖d8-d1+ ♔g1-h2 ♔g8-f7 ♕b5-b3 ♖d1-e1 ♘c5-d3 ♖e1-e2 ♔h2-g3 ♔f7-g7 ♕b3-c3+ ♔g7-f8) +8.66/36 84)

score for White +8.66 depth 36.

Jul-14-19  whiteshark: <41.Nf6+ Kg7 42.Qe8 Rd3 43.Nd7> will win the exchange

click for larger view

and then there's not much wood left to play meaningfully with.

Jul-14-19  Rama: I saw the line but missed the double attack after Qd2.
Jul-14-19  thegoodanarchist: < OhioChessFan: <wooden> it's a play on "Dunkin' Donuts".>

I actually like the pun

Jul-14-19  TheaN: I actually saw the starting move in a heartbeat without having seen this Tal game, and concluded <27.Bxa5 Rxa5 28.Rd8+ Bf8 29.Qd2 +-> must be problematic. No, I didn't calculate the whole thing and OTB I probably wouldn't have played it, but in a puzzle it's not that hard. The problem in the starting position is that there isn't really an alternative for a combination.
Jul-14-19  patzer2: Must have remembered this Sunday (27. ?) puzzle from four years ago, since I managed to correctly guess the first four moves 27. Bxa7!! Rxa7 28. Rd8+ Bf8 29. Qd2 Qc7 30. Re8 Kg7.

However, I didn't remember 31. Qg5! +- (a+4.74 @ 34 ply, Stockfish 10) and instead went for the weaker but still winning 31. Nh2 +- (+2.71 @ 32 ply, Stockfish 10):

<31.Nh2 h5 32.g4 h4 33.g5 Qxe5 34.Qxa5 Qxg5+ 35.Kh1 Bd6 36.Qd8 Qf4 37.Rg8+ Kh7 38.Rh8+ Kg7 39.Qg8+ Kf6 40.Ng4+ Kg5 41.Rh7 Qf3+ 42.Kg1 Qxh3 43.Qd8+ Kxg4 44.Qxd6 Qf3 45.Qe7 g5 46.Qxf7 Qxf7 47.Rxf7 Nxb2 48.Rxb7 Na4 49.Rb5 Kf4 50.Ra5 Nc3 51.Rxc5 (+5.89 @ 41 ply, Stockfish 10)>

P.S.: So where did Black go wrong? The computer indicates 27...Rxa5, which allows 28. Rd8+ Bf8 29. Qd2 +- (+8.43 @ 31 ply, Stockfish 10), was the decisive mistake.

Instead, Black could have put up more resistance by conceding the loss of a pawn with 27...Nxb2 28.Qxb2 Qa4 29.Rd8+ Rxd8 30.Bxd8 Qd1+ 31.Kh2 Qxd8 32.Qxb7 ± to +- (+1.95 @ 49 ply, Stockfish 10).

However, who can blame Suttles for deciding to go down fighting with 27...Rxa5 rather than suffering in a pawn down endgame against Tal? The practical chances of surviving with a draw against Tal after 27...Nxb2 28. Qxb2 ± were probably slim to none.

For an earlier improvement, I'd scrap 7...Bg4 which allows 8. Qe2 ± (+1.03 @ 33 ply, Stockfish 10) and instead play 7...Nbd7 = (0.00 @ 34 ply, Stockfish 10) as in Black's win in D Mastrovasilis vs L Vajda, 2008.

Jul-14-19  I Like Fish: Tal is the best
Premium Chessgames Member
  Breunor: No matter how many chess games I ply through, I can never take Tal for granted. His genius is so inspiring!
Jul-15-19  patzer2: Correction: I managed to correctly guess the first four moves <27. Bxa5!! Rxa5> 28. Rd8+ Bf8 29. Qd2 Qc7 30. Re8 Kg7.
Oct-31-20  GilGandel: <SpamIAm>, better yet is 35. Rxf8+, Kxf8; 36. Nxe6+ when White not only picks up the Queen but has a mating attack with the Queen and Knight.
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