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Evgeny Bareev vs Alexander Grischuk
European Club Cup (2006), Fuegen AUT, rd 5, Oct-12
Nimzo-Indian Defense: Three Knights Variation (E21)  ·  0-1



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sac: 25...Nxg3+ PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
Oct-18-06  positionalgenius: 25...Nxg3+! A great sac.Is it sound? Don't know but this is one of 2006's best games.
Oct-18-06  ahatchu: Looks like Bareev loses two pawns and a rook for 2 nights without a clear alternative. With the 1-point piece advantage, the advancing b-pawn and the vulnerable position of Bareev's King, the sac seems very sound. I'd like to hear suggestions on any way Bareev could have avoided losing material within 4 moves after the sac.
Nov-14-14  plumbst: Difficult. Black is up a pawn.

The only possibility I see is

26.Qxg3 Ne2
27.Qe3 (27.Rxc8 Nxg3+) Nxc1
28.Rxc1 Rxc1+
29.Qxc1 Rxf2

White looks lost here; Black is threatening Rxg2 and Rd2 and the passed b pawn will cost White a Bishop.

Nov-14-14  diagonalley: too hard for me :-(
Nov-14-14  greenfield67: Yes. What <plumbst> said. But I didn't attempt to calculate beyond move 29, and I didn't expect the end to come so quickly.
Nov-14-14  M.Hassan: "Difficult"
Black to play 25...?
Black is a pawn up and has 2 Knights for White's Bishop pair

A discovered attack on White's Queen gains material:

26.Qxg3 Ne2
27.Qe3 Nxc1
28.Rxc1 Rxc1
29.Qxc1 Rxf2
This is as far as I can see. Black now has a Rook+3 pawns for 2 Bishops and black seems better. Time to check

All right

Nov-14-14  gofer: Well the first move is obvious, as it is 100% forcing.

<25 ... Nxg3+>
<26 Qxg3 Ne2>
<27 Qe3 Nxc1>

Assuming that white doesn't want black to be an exchange up and have a passed pawn on the rampage, we probably get...

<28 Rxc1 Rxc1>
<29 Qxc1 ...>

At which point white has kept its advantage of 2B v R, but its looking like a pretty flimsy advantage after the next move!

<29 ... Rxf2>

click for larger view

Suddenly, white's defences look pretty shakey. What can white do? Black threatens all sorts of horrible scenarios the least of which is

30 ... Rxg2 31 Kxg2 Qd5+ 32 Kg1 Qxe5 leading to a three pawn advantage!

But the queen cannot leave the 1st rank due to Qd1+ mating, so we probably get...

30 Bd4 Re2 31 Qb1 Qd2 32 Bg3 b3 33 Bf3 Qc2 (Qxb3 Qc1+ mating) 34 Qxc2 Rxc2 35 Be4 Rc1+ 36 Kg2 b2


30 Bb7 b3 31 Qc8 Qxc8 32 Bxc8 Kf7 33 Ba3 b2 (Kg1 Rd2 gaining tempo) 35 Bxb2 Rxb2


Didn't consider 30 Ba1, but I don't see that is makes no never mind...

Nov-14-14  morfishine: Sacrifice a piece for an exposed attack, fork, liquidate, invade the second rank

I was able to see thru move 29 starting with <25...Nxg3+> 26.Qxg3 Ne2 27.Qe3 Nxc1 28.Rxc1 Rxc1+ 29.Qxc1 and getting to this point <29...Rxf2>

click for larger view

Under normal circumstances, 2-Bishops can hold off a rook; but things are not so normal with Black enjoying a 3-pawn advantage. The more I looked, the more it seemed White is lost here; its just hard to find a decent plan; White's options are limited due to such positional aspects as his weak back rank and Black's passed b-pawn

For example, from here I had 30.Bg3 Rd2 31.Bf3 b3 planning 32...Rc2

click for larger view


Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: Black has two knights and a pawn for the bishop pair.

White threatens Qxb4.

The fork 25... Ne2 is met with 26.Rxc8. This suggests 25... Nxg3+ 26.Qxg3 (26.f(h)xg3 Rxf4 - + [Q+N+2P vs R+2B]) 26... Ne2 27.Qe3 (27.Rxc8 Nxg3+ 28.hxg3 Qxc8 - + [Q+N+2P vs 2B]) 27... Nxc1 28.Rxc1 Rxc1 29.Qxc1 Rxf2 and Black has a rook and three pawns for the bishop pair and threatens 30... Rxg2 31.Kxg2 Qd5+ and 30... b3 followed by 31... b2 32.Bxb2 Rxb2 33.Qxb2 Qd1+ 34.Bf1 Qxf1# or 31... Rc2 with the idea ... Qd2:

A) 30.Qh6 Qd1+ 31.Bf1 Qxf1#.

B) 30.Qe1 Qd2

B.1) 31.Qg1 Rxg2 32.Qxg2 Qe1+ 33.Qg1 Qxe5 - + [3P].

B.2) 31.Qxd2 Rxd2 32.Kg1 (32.Be4 Re2 wins a bishop) 32... b3 33.Kf1 b2 34.Be4 b1=Q+ 35.Bxb1 Rd1+ - + [R+2P vs B].

C) 30.Be4 Re2 31.Qb1 (31.Qc4 Qd1+ 32.Qf1 Qxf1#) 31... Qd2 32.Bg3 b3 looks winning.

Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Missed this Friday combination. After visualizing <25...Nxg3+ 26. Qxg3 Ne2>, I also saw 27. Rxc8 (diagram below)

click for larger view

and immediately thought I was forced to play 27...Qxc8??, allowing 28. Qe3 .

What I missed seeing three moves ahead in the diagramed position above was the zwischenzug (a.k.a. in-between move) 27...Nxg3+! 28. hxg3 Qxc8 .

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: I the first few moves, but it ended far more abruptly than I was expecting.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Why not 25...Ne3? (presses on e8 square) Okay, 26.Rxc8 Qxc8 27.Qxb4 and white is better.
Nov-14-14  morfishine: <patzer2> That's unusual 4U
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: White could have prolonged the match by playing something like 30 Bh3, below, threatening 31 Bxe6+.

click for larger view

Now if 30...Qd5+, then 31 Kg1 saves black's bishop.

click for larger view

Nov-14-14  dfcx: 25...? black to move, up a pawn.

There are two pins on the c & f files.

26.Qxg3 Ne2
Now white has to choose a defence.
A. 27.Rxc8 Nxg3+ 28.hxg3 Qxc8
B. 27.Qe3 Nxc1 28. Rxc1 Rxc1 29. Qxc1 Rxf2 and black has R+4P vs 2B. I think black should win from here.

Premium Chessgames Member
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Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: If white moves the queen over to the king side, black will pin her.
Nov-14-14  abuzic: 25...♘xg3+ 26.♕xg3 ♘e2 27.<♕d3>

1) <27...♕xd3> 29.♖xc8+ 28.♖f8 29.♖c7

1a) 29...b3? 30.Rg7+ Kh8 31.Rxg6+ Rf6 32.Bxf6#

1b) 29...♖e8 30.f4 b3 31.♖g7+ ♔f8
<31...Kh8 32.Rxg6#>

32.♖xh7 white forces draw by perpetual

click for larger view

1c) 29...♖d8 30.♙f4 ♙h4 31.♖g7+ ♔f8
<31...Kh8 32.Rd7+ Kg8 33.Rxd3 Rxd3 34.Be4 white wins>

click for larger view

32.♖h7 ♖d5 33.♖a1 ♕d1+
<33...Ra5 34.Rh8+ Ke7 35.Rh7+ Kf8

<(35...Ke8? 36.Bc6+ Kf8 37.Rxa5 now white has the upper hand)>

click for larger view

36.Rh8+ perpetual draw>

click for larger view

34.♖xd1 ♖xd1+ 35.♗f1 ♖xf1+ 36.♔g2 ♖c1 37.♔f3; white 2Ps down but can hold this position

click for larger view


Nov-14-14  abuzic: Cont...
25...♘xg3+ 26.♕xg3 ♘e2 27.<♕d3>

2) <27...♘xc1> 28.♕xd8+ ♖xd8 29.♖xc1 ♖xf2 30.♗h3 ♔f7 31.♗g3; and white 2Ps down and R+2Bs for 2Rs, can he hold the position

click for larger view

The original line 25...Nxg3+ 26.Qxg3 Ne2 27.<Qe3> Nxc1 28.Rxc1 Rxc1 29.Qxc1 Rxf2 <30.Ba1> loses to 30...b3 31.Qe1 b2 32.Bxb2 Rxb2

<better was 30.Bh3 Kf7 31.Bg2, white 3Ps down and Q+2Bs for Q+R, can black win this endgame? ...>

click for larger view

Nov-14-14  TheBish: Bareev vs Grischuk, 2006

Black to play (25...?) "Difficult", Black is up a pawn.

This is a good puzzle. After looking at moves like 25...g5 and 25...Ne2 (which leads to nothing after 26. Rxc8) and 25...Ra8 and about ready to give up, I decided to look again to see if I missed a forced move that might lead to something. Especially in tactics exercises, you can't overlook any forced moves! And these include checks!

25...Nxg3+!! 26. Qxg3

Clearly forced, as the queen was attacked as well as the king.


Now the point becomes clear. White has no time for 27. Rxc8?? Nxg3+ and 28...Qxc8. The tempo means everything! With the double attack on the c1 rook as well as the queen, the next move is forced.

27. Qe3 Nxc1 28. Rc1 Rxc1 29. Qxc1 Rxf2

Now the threat is 30...Rxg2 31. Kxg2 Qd5+, simplifying to a Q+P endgame where Black is three pawns up. White's queen can't defend the Bg2 since 30. Qc6?? Qd1+ mates and 30. Qg1? Rxg2! 31. Qxg2 (or 31. Kxg2 Qd5+) 31...Qd1+ 32. Qg1 Qd5+ 33. Qg2 Qxe5 effectively carries out the threat.

30. Bg3

Or 30. Bb2?? Rxb2! 31. Qxb1 Qd1+ and mates. Also if 30. Ba1 b3! and the threat of ...b2 leads to a won game.

30...Rd2! 31. Bf3

The only move that guards against 31...Rd1+.

31...Qd3! and suddenly White is lost, as the bishop can't be defended without allowing either 32...Rd1+, 32...Qd5+ or 32...Qf1+, e.g. 32. Qc8+ Kg7 33. Qb7+ Kh6 34. Bg2 Qb1+, or 32. Bg4 Qd5+ 33. Kg1 Qg2#.

Nov-15-14  Cheapo by the Dozen: I of course saw the first couple of moves, but thought White could defend with something like Qg4. What I missed was the power of the ... Qd1+ back rank check threat.

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