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Samuel Reshevsky vs Rafael Vaganian
"Vagan poetry" (game of the day Aug-14-2021)
Skopje (1976), Skopje YUG, rd 5, Mar-??
French Defense: Tarrasch. Pawn Center Variation (C05)  ·  0-1



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Given 50 times; par: 33 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Apr-21-19  malt: First went for 15...Nd:e5 16.de5 N:e5
White could play 17.Ned4

Looked at 16...B:e5+ 17.Nf4 Bd6
(17.N:e5 Qf2# )
Did not seen the brilliant sac's
Beautiful game !

Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: I've seen this several times but I still forgot most of it. I knew it arose from the French Tarrasch and that Reshevsky took the centre pawn.

I think that 12 Be3 was better.

I play the Tarrasch French as White and once I played f4 otherwise I prefer the main line with 5 Bd3 c5 6 c3 Nc6 7 Ne2...

5 f4 is o.k. and also I think Kf2 is also o.k. but White has to avoid the kind of thing that happened here as Black is always trying to break the centre open...

Premium Chessgames Member
  Breunor: Stockfish gives 8 Be3 a score of 0.37 and Ke2 0.04. So it isn't considered best (at least by this computer) but it isn't fatal.

As others have said, an error was missing 14 h3 putting the white king to safety, at a score of 0.35. Re1 is scored at -.15.

The computer views the decisive mistake was the obvious looking 15 fxe5 which scores to -2.5, while dxe5 is -.5.

The difference appears to be that with dxe5, after the exchanges on e5 (Ndxe5 Nxe5 Bxe5) white isn't in check and the king can still escape with h3!

Apr-21-19  feldheim: A magnificent game...very hard to follow. Having grown up in the Reshevsky era, it seemed that he was out of his solid 1. d4 comfort zone. In the old days, playing Sammy was like boxing with an opponent with a 6" reach advantage.
Apr-21-19  RookFile: <Bobby's old nemesis gets creamed here. This is why Bobby avoided the new generation (Karpov, Kasparov, Vaganian, Beliyavesky, etc) like a plague.>

Fischer did a lot of things, but chances are he didn't base his decision on whether to play on how a past his prime former competitor did.

Premium Chessgames Member
  drollere: how does 18. gxf3, Qf2+, Kg5 fail? it looks fearsome but it seems the K can slither back to d2 or f2 ...
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <drollere>
On 18. gxf3 Qf2+ 19. Kg5 <h6+>, the king can't slither back toward d2 (20. Kf4 g5#), or toward f2 (20. Kh5 Qxf3+ and mate next).
Apr-21-19  mel gibson: I didn't know what to do.
Stockfish 10 is agreeing with the first text move.

It gives a small advantage to Black equivalent of a minor piece.

15.... Ndxe5

(15. .. Ndxe5 (♘d7xe5 ♘e2-f4 ♘e5xd3 ♕d1xd3 ♘c6-b4 ♕d3-b3 g7-g5 ♘f4xd5 ♕b6-d6+ ♖e1-e5 ♗f6xe5+ d4xe5 ♕d6xd5 ♕b3xb4 g5-g4 ♘f3-e1 ♕d5xe5+ ♗c1-f4 ♕e5-f5 ♗f4-e3 h7-h5 ♕b4-c5 b7-b6 ♕c5xf5 ♗c8xf5 ♖a1-d1 ♖a8-e8 ♗e3-d4 ♖e8-d8 ♖d1-d2 ♔g8-f7 ♗d4-c3 ♖d8xd2 ♗c3xd2 ♖f8-e8 ♔g3-f2 h5-h4 ♗d2-c3 ♔f7-g6 a2-a3 ♗f5-e4 ♗c3-d2 ♖e8-f8+ ♔f2-g1 ♔g6-f5 ♗d2-b4 ♖f8-g8 ♔g1-f1 g4-g3 h2xg3 h4xg3 a3-a4 ♖g8-h8 a4-a5 b6xa5 ♗b4xa5 ♖h8-h6) +3.29/39 172)

score for Black +3.29 depth 39.

Apr-21-19  sfm: <mel gibson
Stockfish 10 is agreeing with the first text move. It gives a small advantage to Black equivalent of a minor piece.>

Well, but you know, for some of us very strong players, such small advantages are usually juuust enough to engineer it into a win.

Nice analysis!

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: If anyone wants to give me ±3.00 or so to start, have to say that, even after all these years away from the game, I might have a shot.

Signed, life 1200 player

Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: I played it through and still have no idea what was going on.
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: Terrific game! seeing 17...RxN and the threat of 18...Q-f2+, leading to forced mate was the hard part.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eggman: Only in chess could you have a famous match-up between combatants born about 40 years apart. This would be like Rocky Marciano fighting Lennox Lewis.
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: I think the pun is based on the famous "worst poetry in the Universe" by Douglas Adams.

You see if I don't!

Aug-14-21  AlicesKnight: Reshevsky mopped up by a man who knows where his towel is?
Aug-14-21  goodevans: And that's why I don't stick my king in front of my pawns in the opening.

I thought White might be able to find refuge with <22.Rxf5 Qxf5 23.Qxd5+ Be6 24.Qf3 Qxe5 25.Bf4>.

click for larger view

But, no, <25...g5+!> and if <26.Bxg5> then <26...Qxh2+>.

Aug-14-21  CivilDisobedience: pun from "pagan poetry" by: Bjork
Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: This game had me "??!-ing" all the way.
Aug-14-21  goodevans: My first thought was <Vogon poetry> but <Pagan Poetry> looks equally plausible.

I like quite a lot of Bjork and that's probably my favourite track. Not sure about the video though: (spoiler alert - self mutilation and nudity).

Aug-14-21  rilkefan: I'm a Douglas Adams fan too.
Aug-14-21  goodevans: <rilkefan> Me too, particularly the Dirk Gently books.

Last year I finally got around to reading 'The Salmon of Doubt', his final, unfinished novel. Mixed feelings about that one.

Aug-14-21  Ironmanth: WTH?!! Craziness from Super Sammy. And against such a strong opponent. A head-scratcher, this one. Y'all stay safe out there today!
Aug-14-21  daveinsatiable: Great game, albeit way over my head.
Very nice pun too. (I'm pretty sure the poster wasn't thinking of Björk.)

And thanks for the link <goodevens> – listened to that album a lot back in 2003 (and 2004 and 2005), but had never seen the video.

Aug-14-21  RookFile: Reshevsky would have been better after 14. h3. So his play was not crazy. Full credit to Vaganian for resourceful tactics when he got the chance!
Aug-14-21  Brenin: "Vogon poetry is, of course, the third worst in the universe." For the full quotation (and the two even worse) see
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