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Peter Svidler vs Francisco Vallejo Pons
"Pawned by Pons" (game of the day Oct-28-2009)
13th Amber Rapid (2004) (rapid), Monte Carlo MNC, rd 4, Mar-23
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation (B90)  ·  0-1



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Given 19 times; par: 24 [what's this?]

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sac: 25...Rfb8 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: I saw 25...Rfb8 but it did me no good. Had to peek.

Do not forget 26 Qc3?!, below, as a defense.

click for larger view

Black to play and win. (There are at least two ways to proceed).

Feb-06-16  transpose: What a finish by Pons! Spectacular.
Feb-06-16  King.Arthur.Brazil: Well, I find 25... Rfb8! 26.Qxc5, but I didn't imagine the answer 27. d6 that protects a8 square, but Rxe7, don't know if this will cause much difference; but for this reason I played 26. Ne4 instead of Nc4. This move blocks other answers like 27.Rxe7 or 27.d7 because the WQ is double attacked and 27.Qc4 or Qc6 will not stop the final winning combination (eg. Rxa3+ 28. b2xa3 b2+, 29. Ka2 b1=Q#). In that case, white would play 27.Qxe7 Qxe7 28.d6 Rxa3+ 29. b2xa3 b2+ 30. Ka2 Nc3#. Anyway, 27. Qxc4 is answered by the same. (Rxa3+, ... b1=Q#). So WQ must protect a3 pawn. But black finished verywell using the same combinantion again: 30...Qa4+ (31. Na3 Qxa3+ 32.bxa3 b2+ 33.Ka2 b1=Q#!) Nice!
Feb-06-16  King.Arthur.Brazil: I guess our JIM is without providence, this time (lgs). You said that 26.Qc3?! as defense. I have my doubts too: 26.. Rxa3+ 27.b2xa3 b2+ 28. Qxa2 Rxa2 29.Kxb2 Na4+ 30.Kb3 (30.Ka1 or Ka2, Qb7 ends)Qb7+ 31.Kxa4 Sd7+ 32.Ka5 Sd8# (32.Nb5 Qb5#). White is lost.
Feb-06-16  PJs Studio: I won't be getting my hopes up next time I face Svidler.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Probably a most prudent approach.

Nice attacking game by Vallejo.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: <King.ArthurBrazil> <I guess our JIM is without providence, this time (lgs). You said that 26.Qc3?! as defense. I have my doubts too: 26.. Rxa3+ 27.b2xa3 b2+ 28. Qxa2 Rxa2 29.Kxb2 Na4+ 30.Kb3 (30.Ka1 or Ka2, Qb7 ends)Qb7+ 31.Kxa4 Sd7+ 32.Ka5 Sd8# (32.Nb5 Qb5#). White is lost.>

Here is the position after after 29 Kxb2 in your above line.

click for larger view

White has exchanged his queen for 2 rooks and a pawn. If 29...Na4+ 30 Ka1 Qb7 ( as you say) white has 31 Ncb3 as a defense, making it a tougher path for black.

click for larger view

Try 29...Qb7+, seeing 30 Ncb3 Nd3+, winning a piece.

click for larger view

The other way to go for black after 26 Qc3 is 26...Nc4, seeing 27.. Nxa3

Feb-07-16  King.Arthur.Brazil: Yes, JIM. In the line 30.Kxb2 Na4+ if white play 31.Ka1/a2, the answer must be 31...Qc7, as white dispose no "c" column. The Nb3 will not help because of Qc3+ ..., Qc2#. (In such case, maybe is best 30. Ka2 then Ka1). 32.Sd2 Nc5... its not the sane. When I think about Ka1/2 I saw the other wins but didn't see Nb3, for sure. Good.
Feb-14-16  Bobby Spassky: This appears to be ground hog day.
Feb-14-16  jith1207: I have solved the insane puzzle for the first time by having the insane memory of recollection from few days ago.

I actually visited Punxsutawney, PA for the Groundhog Day 4 years ago. From then onwards, I have learned to be not surprised if things keep repeating itself. I understand it's a small glitch in the world of The Matrix.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Happy Valentines Day!

I see <cg>, trying to give some "love", as this puzzle looks vaguely familiar. Too tired to try solving it, but what do you know, it was just from last week!

Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: I actually remembered this position from the previous time, a whole week ago. Amazing!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Huh?

First CG gives us a puzzle that isn't a puzzle. Now they give us one from a few days ago. Which I can just about remember.

What gives, CG? Are you feeling okay?

Feb-14-16  stst: Remember this... a repeated POD... but also remember not quite conclusive...

will deal with it tomorrow!!

Off the head goes two quickies:

(A) .... Rfb8 -- more direct

(B) ..... Ra4 -- trying to trap the Q?

Feb-14-16  Nick46: <Bobby Spassky: This appears to be ground hog day.> Given another six weeks I'll be able to solve it.
Feb-14-16  agb2002: Too recent.
Feb-14-16  ndg2: I began with Nc4, which points into the right direction (rook sac on a3 and then b2 check) but omitted the preparation Rb8.
Feb-14-16  morfishine: Svidler fell off the roof again


Feb-14-16  john barleycorn: < morfishine: Svidler fell off the roof again *****>

pun of the year. my vote.

Feb-14-16  patzer2: <Once> I think you read my mind. Other than your pithy comment, my only thought was that is checking out the short term memory of our senior members and giving a pop-quiz on the material covered just last week for all our other regulars.

I passed the test on both counts, quickly remembering the double knight sacrifice offer wins after 25...Rfb8! 26. Qxc5 Nc4! .

P.S.: My six-year-old grandson (soon to be seven this month) had a pretty good tournament, competing mostly against talented middle-school and high school players in a central Texas tournament. He scored two wins and two losses. Suprisingly, he did much better in skittles games on the side where he won five out of six against the older high school players wanting to play the youngest player. One good thing that came out of the tournament for him was that he finally realized he can't make all his moves at blitz speed against good players. By the second round he slowed down and started to take time to more deeply calculate his moves in difficult positions.

Feb-14-16  znsprdx: znsprdx: good thing I thought it was white to least it was still challenging - because Black is simply crushing anyway

but by the time I got to my second coffee and flipped board- 26...Nc4!! is quite elegant indeed

Feb-14-16  mel gibson: <Jimfromprovidence: I saw 25...Rfb8 but it did me no good. Had to peek.

Do not forget 26 Qc3?!, below, as a defense.>

That doesn't work.

I didn't see the correct solution for black - 25... Rfb8.

Feb-14-16  stst: Back to resume the REPEATED POD..

Still the more obvious crunch:
26.Qc3 Rxa3+
27.bxa3 (forced, else Na2 is redundant after Rxa2#) Na4 (the theme, chase both K & Q, 28.Nxb3 ==> NxQ, Q lost, of course Qxb3 will exchange down, also Q lost, and Q wandering on rank 3 ==> b2+ and mate after b1=Q) 28.Qd2 N6c4 (keep chasing Q!)
29.Qf2 (not e2, to avoid a possible Nac3+ fork later) Now b2+ and the Q is lost if Qxb2 (Black keeps the R)
else if
30.Ka2 b1=Q#

26.Qd2 Rxa3 (quite similar)
27.bxa3 N6c4 (keep chasing Q)
28.Nxb3 ==> Q lost, or
28.any Q move ==> b2+ and Nxb2 ==> Q lost in exchange of N only.

The other lines should not be more efficient...

now recall the memory...

Feb-14-16  stst: Yeah, Svid went for QxN, I did thought of that earlier, but forgot... Should gave that analysis as well....

The net effect is still just Q exchanged for N, nothing really superior... after the N's are gone, the Black Q becomes much freer to go places (for a W, of course!)!

Apr-04-16  The Kings Domain: Impressive combinative attack by Pons, and more so considering it's a rapid. Reminiscent of Morphy and Alekhine, had he been playing as consistently as this he could have been facing Carlsen in November.
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