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Loek van Wely vs Viktor Korchnoi
Tilburg Fontys (1998), Tilburg NED, rd 3, Oct-25
Tarrasch Defense: Swedish Variation, Central Break (D33)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: Korchnoi after 6..c4:

"The so called "Swedish system" of the Tarrasch Defense is a rare guest in modern competition. Black seizes space on the queenside, but his pawn advance is not supported by his pieces. Also the centre is not properly controlled by Black. Last but not least, pawn d5, as per usual in the Tarrasch, remains a vulnerable spot in the Black position."

Interesting that he would play a line that he was so critical of - was he "testing" Van Wely's chess knowledge? 13 Rfc1 had been played in the game Landines-Cranbourne in the 1991 Argentinean Championship; 13 Rfd1 was new.

Korchnoi after 15 Rac1:

"...Why did I actually lose this game? Well, purely for psychological reasons. It is only now, at home, that I am so sensible. During the game, having a certain contemptfor the way my opponent treated the opening, I could not submit to the assessment that White nonetheless had the upper hand."

Korchnoi was critical of his 18..Nxb4?! recommending instead 18..Qf6 19 Ne1..Bxg2 20 Kxg2..Rfd8 21 Nd3 keeping the queens on with just a slight edge for White. 22..Nc6 probably would have been a better defense. In retrospect Korchnoi felt that 24..g5?! created unnecessary weaknesses and felt that he should have just brought his king to the center. Korchnoi had played 28..h5 to try and exchange the h-pawn which would have been a potential weakness after the exchanges that would have occurred after White plays Nc6. 29 g4? (29 Kf3 is better) gave Black a clear road to a draw with 29..hxg 30 hxg..Rc4 and then (1) 31 Nc6..Nxc6 32 bxc..Rxc6 33 Rxa7..Rc2 or (2) 31 Nd3..Nc8 32 Kf3..Rc7 with the threat of 33..Nd6. However, after 29..h4? followed by the ill-advised king maneuver 33..Kc7? and 34..Kb7? Black was in trouble. 40..Kd6 41 e5+..fxe 42 Rxe5 would have easily winning for White.

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