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Vitaly Tseshkovsky vs Walter Browne
Manila Interzonal (1976), Manila PHI, rd 14, Jul-02
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation. English Attack (B90)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-06-08  MichAdams: Chess is 99% tactics.

12.Bf2 was Tseshkovsky's prepared novelty. Robert Byrne had essayed 12.Bf4 against Browne at the 1975 US Championship.

Nov-08-11  Rob Morrison: I've wondered what happens if black plays 19. . . Kf7 instead of 19. . . Qd8. Looks like white would then play 20. Rxf8+ Nxf8 and then:

21. Bc5 Ng6 22. O-O-O and black is hardly out of the woods, though I can't see a clear path to victory for white either.

21. Qf4+ Kg7 22. Bd4+ (or 21. . . Kg6 22. O-O-O or even just take the knight). Okay, this is killing.

Fascinating game.

Oct-18-12  Howard: This was voted as one of the top 10 games for Informant 21 (first half of 1976) and for good reason.

This game was a rather notable case back then of being ambushed in the opening, and the story behind it goes back to the year before when Browne blew Robert Byrne off the board in a 1975 U.S. championship game. The position in that previous game was identical to the one in this game after Browne's very sharp 11...Rh3 !

In the Byrne-Browne game, Byrne played 12.Bf5 and lost quickly. But some believed that 12.Bf2! would have been much better though Browne strongly disagreed, as indicated in an August, 1976 letter he wrote to Chess Life. In fact.....Browne went as far as to say that after 14...Qa5+ (which occurred in the Manila interzonal game), Black had a won game especially because the d8 square was "now vacant for the Black king".

"The upshot of all this" (as Andy Soltis put it in his excellent book on the history of the U.S. chess championship) was that when Browne sat down to play Tseshkovsky in the 1976 interzonal, he had his "12...Rxc3 improvement ready for any occasion" (as Chess Life and Review put it in its October, 1976 article on the event).

But Browne's "won" position after 14...Qa5 turned out to be anything but!! The "Soviet analytical machine" (again, according to Chess Life and Review) had found improvements for the WHITE side, and Browne lost quickly.

Finally....the October, 1976 issue of "Chess Life and "Review" and also Chess Informant 21 give identical game scores for this rather fascinating game. But in the late Larry Evans' column in the November, 1976 issue of that same magazine, he gave the moves of this game (adding that "Browne could have saved himself a full point" if he'd looked further into the opening for this game) too except....he gave Black's 26th move as 26...Qb7 (!).

Does it make a difference ?! After Black's 29...Ke7, White has 30.Qe8 MATE if indeed the Black queen is on b7.

Not that it makes much difference....30.Qc5+ forces resignation regardless of whether the enemy queen is on d7 (as given here or in Informant 21 or in the Oct. 1976 issue of Chess L and R) or on b7.

Enough of all this ! Just play over this game---I've done so myself 2-3 times over the years.

Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: Great report, <Howard>! Thank you for posting it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  master8ch: 27.Bf5+ is stronger. The bishop is untouchable due to the ensuing mate at f8, and 27...Ke7 allows White's Qc5+, picking up both the bishop at f8 and the rook at h6, thereby inducing resignation (presumably) two moves earlier.

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