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Janis Klavins vs Mikhail Tal
"The Well Tempered Kliavin" (game of the day Oct-30-2009)
Latvian Championship (1954), Riga URS
Sicilian Defense: Dragon. Levenfish Variation (B71)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Oct-30-09  RandomVisitor: 4 minutes per move:

Janis Kliavin - Mikhail Tal

Latvia ch Latvia ch, 1954

[Rybka 3 ]

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.f4 Nc6 7.Nxc6 bxc6 8.e5 Nd7 9.exd6 exd6 10.Be3 Qe7 last book move

[Rybka 3 : 10...Be7 11.Qd2 0-0 12.0-0-0 d5 13.Be2 Re8 14.Kb1 Bc5 15.Bxc5 Nxc5 16.Bf3 Rb8 17.g4 Qb6 18.b3 Qb4 19.h3 a5 20.Rhe1 Rxe1 21.Qxe1 Bd7 -0.22/23 ]

11.Qd2 -0.12/20 Nf6 0.57/21
[Rybka 3 : 11...Bg7 12.0-0-0 0-0 13.Re1 d5 14.Bd4 Qd6 15.Bxg7 Kxg7 16.Ne4 Qc7 17.Ng3 Nf6 18.f5 Rb8 19.Bd3 c5 20.c3 Kg8 21.Rhf1 Qb6 22.Re7= -0.12/20 ]

12.0-0-0 0.37/19 Bg7 1.63/21
[Rybka 3 : 12...Be6 13.h4 h5 14.g3 d5 15.Re1 Bg7 16.Bd4 0.37/19 ]

13.Qxd6 1.55/20 Qxe3+ 2.17/20
[Rybka 3 : 13...Qxd6 14.Rxd6 0-0 15.Rxc6 Re8 16.Bd4 Ne4 17.Bxg7 Kxg7 18.Bb5 a6 19.Ba4 Bd7 20.Rc7 Bxa4 21.Nxa4 Nf2 22.Rg1 Rad8 23.Nc5 a5 24.Nb3 Rd5 25.g3 Re2 26.h4 Ne4 27.c4 Rd3 1.55/20 ]

14.Kb1 2.08/18 Bd7? 5.23/19
[Rybka 3 : 14...Qb6 15.Bc4 Be6 16.Rhe1 Qb7 17.Bxe6 fxe6 18.Na4 Nd5 19.b3 Qc7 20.Rxe6+ Kf7 21.Rxd5 Rac8 22.Rd3 Qxd6 23.Rexd6 Rhe8 24.c3 Re1+ 25.Kc2 Ra1 26.Kb2 Rh1 27.h3 Rc7 28.Nc5 Bf8 29.Rd7+ Rxd7 2.08/18 ]

15.Bb5? 2.42/19
[Rybka 3 : 15.Bc4 Kd8 5.23/19 ]

15...Qb6? 7.11/15
[Rybka 3 : 15...cxb5 16.Rhe1 Qe6 17.Rxe6+ fxe6 18.g4 Rd8 19.g5 Rf8 20.gxf6 Bxf6 21.Ne4 Be7 22.Qe5 a6 23.Nd6+ Bxd6 24.Qxd6 Rf5 25.a3 Rh5 26.Rd2 Rf5 27.b3 a5 28.Qc7 2.42/19 ]

16.Rhe1+ 7.00/16 Kd8 6.43/14
17.Bxc6 6.26/13 Rb8? #23/12
[Rybka 3 : 17...Qc7 18.Qe7+ 6.26/13 ]

18.Qe7+ #23/13 Kc7 #5/3
19.Rxd7+ #5/3 Kc8 #4/3
20.Bb5? 8.61/17
[Rybka 3 : 20.Nb5 Ra8 #4/3 ]

20...Rb7 8.82/16
21.Rxb7 7.88/15 Qxb7 7.85/13
22.Qxb7+? 3.83/18
[Rybka 3 : 22.Qc5+ Kb8 7.85/13 ]


Oct-30-09  RandomVisitor: 12...Bg7?? was the fatal move and the game is essentially over at this point.
Oct-30-09  zdhqz: what about 19.Nd5+!!
Oct-30-09  TheaN: That Kliavin missed 20.Nb5 is typical: in an attack, you normally want more pieces, forcing moves and no counterplay. This move does all three fair and square. Nice attack anyway.
Oct-30-09  eaglewing: It is always hard to argue after an extensive Rybka-analysis, but I wonder if, apart from the Rybka preferred 14...Qb6, 14...Nd7 could not be a good way to salvage the best from the remaining black position.

I feel, the inherent activation of Bg7 and counterattack, while maybe even clearly lost with best play, could offer the most regarding swindling options. Any immediate strong answer to 14... Nd7?

Oct-30-09  redwhitechess: haha.. nice pun. loves the game also, althought i never happy see a black side of sicilian lost in 20 moves.
Oct-30-09  Autoreparaturwerkbau: <zdhqz: what about 19.Nd5+!!> How does it work?
Oct-30-09  dTal: Dont get too excited folks, Tal was just going on 18 in 1954 when this was played I believe. The greatest Chess talent in history was a late bloomer, and was just learning his craft at this point..
Oct-30-09  YoungEd: 15. ♗b5 is a beautiful move! It's not that complicated, but it still impresses (all the more because I didn't see it at first).
Oct-30-09  Chessmensch: According to the bio, this is the only game Kliavin ever won. Further to the well-tempered clavier messages, clavecin is the French word for harpsichord. That's closest to Kliavin and is likely what the pun author had in mind.
Oct-30-09  petrie911: <sfm: <As a compromise, keyboards are tuned just a bit off, so that all twelve keys sound pretty good. Hence, "well-tempered"> Actually tuned so the quotient of the frequency between any two subsequent half-notes has a ratio equal to the 12th root of 2 - but Bach would never have known. :-)>

No, what you're describing is equal temperament, where all keys sound the same. In well temperament, each key still has its own character, but all keys are usable. In the standard temperament before that, only about 15 of the 24 keys were usable.

On chess-related matters, did Black resign at the end here simply because he's about to go into the endgame 3 pawns down, or does White have a more pressing threat I'm not seeing?

Oct-30-09  chillowack: <Chessmensch: clavecin is the French word for harpsichord. That's closest to Kliavin and is likely what the pun author had in mind.> As has already been pointed out, there's a famous music book by Bach called "The Well-Tempered Clavier." Clearly that's what the punster had in mind, and I don't know that there's any need to go digging through French dictionaries for any other explanation!

Tal had been playing chess for some 6 years by the time this game occurred, but he was not yet a master. It was in this very year, 1954, that he played a match against a master (I believe his name was Saigin), which Tal won, and thereby earned the Master title. (See *Complete Games of Mikhail Tal 1936-1959* by Hilary Thomas.)

Oct-30-09  SugarRaySam: 22...Kxb7 23.Re7+ grabbing another pawn
Oct-30-09  akapovsky: chillowack I'am the pun author and yeah I did'nt have clavencin in mind,I was thinking about the title to the peices by bach.Yep I came up with this pun and presented it at the pun contest.Weird did'nt bother giving me the credit.
Oct-30-09  RandomVisitor: After 12.0-0-0 black is already struggling:

click for larger view

Top 2 moves:

[+0.59] d=25 12...Be6 13.Bd3 Bg7 14.Rhe1 d5 15.f5 gxf5 16.Bxf5 Rb8 17.Bd4 0-0 18.Qg5 h6 19.Bxf6 Qxf6 20.Qxf6 Bxf6 21.Bxe6 fxe6 22.Rxe6

[+0.81] d=22 12...Rb8 13.Re1 Be6 14.Bd3 Bg7 15.f5 gxf5 16.Bxf5 Bxf5 17.Bxa7 Ne4 18.Rxe4 Bxe4 19.Bxb8 Qf6 20.Ba7 c5 21.Kb1 0-0 22.Rd1 Ra8 23.Bb6 Qg6 24.Nxe4 Qxe4 25.Qd3 Qxg2 26.Qxd6 Bxb2 27.Rd2 Qf3 05:45:44 1201898kN, tb=2

Oct-30-09  Shams: <petrie911> thank you for educating me.
Oct-30-09  chillowack: I wonder if Black would have had a better chance with 15...cb? Black gives up the queen, but in return gets a rook and two bishops, which is more than enough material compensation.

True, it still looks grim for Black after 16.Re1 Qe1 17.Re1+ Kd8 18.Qe7+ (18.Nb5 Ne8 19.Re8 Re8 and Black holds) Kc7 19.Rd1 Rhd8 20.Nb5+, but maybe he could survive?

Oct-30-09  WhiteRook48: ouch with Tal falling
Oct-30-09  DarthStapler: Boo! I hate it when Tal loses!
Oct-30-09  AuN1: mm..poor tal got schooled. must be why he wasn't too keen on the dragon.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Upset! Tal lost.

White sure swept away the Q-side pieces.

Jul-24-14  Xeroxx: great game
Nov-29-14  tranquilsimplicity: <AuN1> I agree. This game in my view may have put Tal completely off from playing the Dragon. Tal does not seem to have employed the Dragon again in his career.#
Nov-29-14  tranquilsimplicity: Just looked through again and found one more Sicilian Dragon by Tal in which he beats Bronstein. Bronstein v Tal (1982).#
Jun-06-20  carpovius: Kliavin looks strange. How does it spell? Should not be Klavin?
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