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Lubomir Ftacnik vs Francisco Vallejo Pons
"Ftacnik Voyage" (game of the day Apr-19-2020)
Bundesliga (2007/08), GER, rd 6, Dec-09
English Opening: King's English Variation. General (A20)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 4 OF 4 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Nov-08-11  JohnAnthony: If Bd5 first then Rg6...
Nov-08-11  alphee: Very nice indeed, both the queen sac and pieces synch. Facing this kind of situation I always have the same question: was it really planned several moves ahead or did it just happen thougth wise play based on good strategy and some pattern recognition?
Nov-08-11  King Death: This is easy but nice. White should play 43.Qg8+ and seal the deal.
Nov-08-11  goodevans: <tatarch: 42...Be7 loses quickly, but black is toasted after any move there, no? Anyone see any defense to 41.Qg5 ...>

The only alternative worth considering is 42 ... Qd8, but that loses instantly to Bd5.

Nov-08-11  Patriot: <jackalope> You are too modest! Good job on the puzzles!

By the way, I was never sure if "jackalopes" existed but now I know! :-)

Nov-08-11  egs: <anthro: Could someone explain the reasoning behind 22 ...Bh3?>

I have been thinking about that too.

My guess is black thought the knight could not be stopped on its way to D4 and a bishop on H3 made that knight more powerful. Since the recapture will be with the buried A8 rook and the plan is to just plug the D-file with the knight anyway, so why not?

Seems like a pretty weak reason though so hopefully there is something more profound I am missing.

White's reply makes sense though. Trade a bad bishop for a good one. The exchange sacrifice is not going anywhere and is not super compelling anyway so maybe something minor can become something bigger... And I guess it did.

Nov-08-11  GrandUnified: I played Ftacnik in a simul a couple months ago in South Carolina. He gave a 2 hour lecture beforehand on selected GM games with mad tactics (moscow variation, etc.) He is awesome - my favorite GM (after Nakamura, Polgar)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Diademas: The adictive chesspuzle of CG has clamed yet another victim. After a perfect score last week I stumbled on a monday. Today I am the hero. Wham,bam. A queen sac. Than the heroes double check and I am number one! No Carlsen, Fischer or Kasparov has anything on me when I get the chance to teach the GMs a lesson early in the week. I wish all days were mondays or tuesdays.
Nov-08-11  BOSTER: The coincidence.

In the morning was that

click for larger view

white to play.

But in the evening is this-<POTD>.

Nov-08-11  TomOhio: Kind of a help-mate. Black's moves 40 and 42 made it all possible.
Nov-08-11  Sacrificial King: Played Ftacnik a year ago in a simul...the guy can play, great finish here.
Nov-08-11  stst: another Q-sac:
43.Qg8+ KxQ
44.Bd5 dis&dbl+ Kf8
all forced.
Nov-08-11  stst: < verymuchanewbie: I went for 43.Bd5, but can now see that Qg8 is much better. I was thinking that Bd5 is still good, but does it loose to 43...Rg6 ? Any help would be appreciated.>

** For "easy" ones, usually it's forced, seldom let loose!!

<<In fact, those "difficult" ones got difficult because of the variations in between - solvers have to get every move as tight (optimal) as possible. Allowing "looseness" would usually deviate from the "solution" - though frequently, the game players got it loose themselves!! >>

Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: If I ever got to play a move like 43.Qg8+ I would retire afterwards. :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Nightsurfer: This game here <L Ftacnik vs F Vallejo-Pons, Germany 2007> is a striking argument for the good advice that novices should listen to: It makes sense to learn combinations because sometimes there will be a lucky moment when you get the chance to realize a replay of that very combination.

It is obvious that Lubomir Ftacnik knew the prototype of the final phase of this game here <L Ftacnik vs F Vallejo-Pons, Germany 2007> , namely Reti vs Tartakower, 1910 , and therefore he was able to find the knock-out punch with regard to this game here <L Ftacnik vs F Vallejo-Pons, Germany 2007> .

One more parallel case is the game
M Amini vs R Gralla, 2010 that has been played three years after <L Ftacnik vs F Vallejo-Pons, Germany 2007> in Hamburg, Germany in 2010: The leader of the Black team in M Amini vs R Gralla, 2010 did not know this game here <L Ftacnik vs F Vallejo-Pons, Germany 2007>, but he knew the famous case of Reti vs Tartakower, 1910 , therefore he was able to realize a replay of the final phases of both the game Reti vs Tartakower, 1910 (because he knew that very game Reti vs Tartakower, 1910 ) and of this game here <L Ftacnik vs Vallejo-Pons, Germany 2007> (though he did not know this very game here) in M Amini vs R Gralla, 2010 , thus making one more point for the reward that one might get if one studies the books!

Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: "Ftacnik Voyage"
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <Nightsurfer> Let's not forget Maczuski vs Kolisch, 1863, Dutch vs J N Sugden, 1964, and <ahem> K Thompson vs F Rhine, 1992.
Apr-19-20  goodevans: <Nov-08-11 goodevans: <tatarch: 42...Be7 loses quickly, but black is toasted after any move there, no? Anyone see any defense to 41.Qg5 ...> The only alternative worth considering is 42 ... Qd8, but that loses instantly to Bd5.>

I guess back then I didn't think <42...Rf8> was worth considering. I wonder why? Maybe I thought the obvious <43.Bd5> was an instant win but <43...Qxg1+ 44.Qxg1 cxd5> gives near material equality.

On the other hand <45.Qb6> would then assert white's complete superiority. I imagine Vallejo Pons, unlike my earlier self, considered all this before rejecting this line.

Premium Chessgames Member
  catlover: I know this question was floated about nine years ago, but what would have been so bad about Ftacnik taking the offered rook with 23. Bg5xRe8?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: ***

I had a similar mate back in 1979. Queen sac and mate with Rook and Bishop.

click for larger view

I'm Black and played 20...Ba4 and 0-1.

Hi catlover,

Good question.

click for larger view

Black offered the exchange and White did not take it right away.

Here I'm thinking Black is happy to see that DSB come off the board as it is a defender of the d4 square and the a8 Rook gets into the game.

A few moves after White has taken the Rook we get this position.

click for larger view

That d4 Knight is worth a Rook. White no doubt saw this position coming and perhaps was not too sure if he could handle the d4 Knight after taking on d8 right away.

The White plan then is be prepared to give back the exchange swapping that Knight for a Rook and hopefully get an opposite coloured Bishop attack going. (A touch of the Reinfeld's notes in hindsight there.)

But that required aggression from Black.

Black made a few double-edged moves on the kingside when perhaps sitting on the position with that d4 Knight was the way to go.

The bland score never tells the full story, it is sheet music without the musicians and sometimes we hear the wrong tune (or in some cases go completely tone deaf) so me and my three chords now speculate.

This was a league match there could be other boards to consider. Black, a team player, may have needed a win for the team so had to mix it.

A non-team player adopts the attitude 'sod the team, save the grade.'


Premium Chessgames Member
  catlover: Thanks, Geoff! With your explanation, I think I hear the tune now.
Apr-19-20  RandomVisitor: After 22...Bh3

click for larger view


<48/75 07:51 +0.32 23.Bf1 Bg4 24.h3 Be6 25.Bxd8 Rxd8> 26.d4 Rxd4 27.Red1 Rxd1 28.Qxd1 b5 29.Rxc6 bxa4 30.Qd8 Ne8 31.Qxe8 Bd7 32.Ra6 Qxa6 33.Qxd7 Qd6 34.Qxa4 Qb6 35.Qc2 Bc5 36.Kg2 Bd4 37.b3 Kg7 38.Bc4 Qc5 39.Qa2 Qe7 40.b4 axb4 41.axb4 Qxb4 42.Bxf7 Qb2 43.Qxb2 Bxb2 44.Ba2 g5 45.Bd5 Bd4 46.Kf1 Bb6 47.Ke2 h6 48.f3 Bd4 49.Kd3

47/63 07:51 0.00 23.Bxd8 Rxd8 24.d4 Ne6 25.dxe5 b5 26.Nc3 Qxf2+ 27.Kxf2 Bc5+ 28.Kf3 Ng5+ 29.Kf4 Ne6+

Apr-19-20  RandomVisitor: After 21...Nc7

click for larger view


<48/73 03:06 +1.04 22.Be3 Qb8 23.d4 b5 24.Qxc6> bxa4 25.Qxc7 Qxc7 26.Rxc7 exd4 27.Bg5 Rd7 28.Rec1 Rxc7 29.Rxc7 Rb8 30.Bc1 Be6 31.Kf1 d3 32.Bxd3 Bg7 33.Bc4 Bxb2 34.Bxe6 fxe6 35.Bxb2 Rxb2 36.Kg2 h6 37.h4 Kf8 38.Kf3 Rb3+ 39.Kf4 Rb2 40.Ra7 Rxf2+ 41.Ke5 Rf3

Apr-20-20  Ironmanth: comments on the pun today?! Rare, no? :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: <Iron> I couldn't remember if I submitted it, ended up here, and yours is the only comment. I think I'd prefer criticism to being ignored....
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