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Ruslan Ponomariov vs Michael Adams
Linares (2002), Linares ESP, rd 9, Mar-04
Spanish Game: Marshall Attack. Modern Main Line (C89)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: On 16. Bxg5 I believe Black indended ...Qf5
Apr-03-03  refutor: from move 16 to 24 why couldn't black take the exchange? i'm obviously overlooking some tactical me out mr. crafty ;)
Apr-03-03  crafty: 17. ... ♘xe4 18. ♘xe4 ♗e7 19. ♗xg5 ♗xg5 20. ♘xg5 ♕f5 21. h4   (eval 1.12; depth 14 ply; 250M nodes)
Aug-25-03  patzer2: In this game, Ruslan Ponomariov gets into a theoretical battle in the Marshall attack in the Ruy Lopez with it's chief proponent Michael Adams. Unfortunately for Michael, who plays the Marshall the most and should be the best prepared, he comes up a bit short against Ruslan's interesting novelty 16. Qe2!?

With 15. Re4., Ponomariov enters a well analyzed counter attack line. And Adams answers with the sharpest theoretical reply in 15...g5! Now Ruslan's 16. Qe2!? appears to be a novelty here, as 16. Qf1 or Qf3!? (but not 16. Nd2? Bf5!) were previously the most usual ways of proceeding to neutralize the black attack.

And unfortunately for Michael he could not find his way through the maze of tactics and home analysis Ruslan had prepared for him. Perhaps as <Refutor> suggests, black needs to take the exchange between moves 17 and 23, even though white gets the initiative, an attack and a stronger central pawn structure as compensation.

In any event, those expecting to face the Marshall attack in the Ruy Lopez, from either side should study this game. Thanks Michael and Ruslan for adding to the theory of this exciting opening and for an exciting fighting struggle!!

May-09-04  Toobs: Damn!!! Nice reply Patzer2
Oct-11-05  rjsolcruz: ponomariov's novelty meant that he came to the game prepared for it is well known the the bloody good englishman is an adherent of the marshall attack. and going back to memory lane, the marshall was introduced in the early 1900 (!) by the american champion frank marshall against the 3rd world champion from cuba; jose raul capablanca. sad to say, the debut of the variation was a disaster for marshall but a blessing for the whole chess world.
Nov-21-06  babakova: <the debut of the variation was a disaster for marshall but a blessing for the whole chess world.> Funny, I was thinking it has almost killed the ruy lopez... I am obviously exaggerating-- but not much.
Apr-19-08  positionalgenius: Nice game,with these two waging a war in the marshall attack.
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: 16 Qe2 (initially played by Petrosian in a loss to Averbakh in 1947) is not played as often as 16 Qf1 or 16 Qf3. 16..Nf6?! worked out poorly; several rounds later Anand played 16..f5 against Ponomariov and drew quickly. 18..Nxe4 had been played in Sax's win over Atalik at BLED 2000 (game not included in the database); 18..c5 was new. It should be mentioned that Atalik in his analysis had mentioned 17 Bxg5 as a possibility but Ponomariov pointed out that 17..Bg4 would have been an immediate refutation. Ponomariov was critical of 19..c4? recommending instead 19..cxd 20 cxd..Rac8 21 Re1..Bb4 22 Ne4..Nxe4 23 Nxe4..Bxe4 24 fxe..Qg4 25 e5 with White's pawn center compensating for the material deficit. After 23..Bb4? 24 Re5! Black was already lost; at some point he probably should have taken the exchange and hoped for the best. Even better would have been 26 d5..Rc2 (26..Qd7 27 Rae1) 27 Qd4 immediately deciding the game.

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