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Yifan Hou vs Yangyi Yu
Chinese Championship (2013), Xinghua CHN, rd 2, Apr-17
Sicilian Defense: Richter-Rauzer Variation. General (B60)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Apr-26-14  diagonalley: yesterday's puzzle began with an exchange sac... so i really should have looked at 20.RxN .. but didn't, instead only going for the prosaic 20.BxN followed by 21.N-Q5 with some pressure :-(
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: This is one of those "I say potato, you say potarto" sort of puzzles.

Some folk will happily analyse variations - needing to be sure. Others will switch off their targeting computers and use the force, Luke.

The Jedi way goes a bit like this ... "I'll exchange twice on f6, sink my knight into d5, then chuck my queen onto h5, threatening all sorts of nastiness on f6, f7, h7 and g7. That will mess up his kingside pawn shelter and give me an attack."

And messed up kingside pawns plus an attack is usually worth the exchange.

Does it matter whether we start with 20. Bxf6 or 20. Rxf6? Fritzie actually marginally prefers 20. Bxf6 after a few minutes of Teutonic pipe sucking, with +1.87 over +1.43 for 20. Bxf6. But in human mode I went for 20. Rxf6 simply because it felt more puzzly.

Apr-26-14  morfishine: I've seen this one:

<20.Rxf6> and Black has a hard time scrambling around trying to defend: 20...Bxf6 21.Nd5 Qd8 22.Bxf6 gxf6 23.Qh5


Apr-26-14  Balmo: Yifan's rooklift on move 12 reminds me of one Geller employed against Kogan where he won with an impressive and complex attack (although with a little help from Black). Geller apparently said of the rooklift "Typical romanticism! Black's position has no weaknesses and the White attack should not succeed." Fast forward to this game played probably 60 years later. After 12 Re3 it's hard to believe that Black will have any trouble defending his position. Black, it's worth noting, is an excellent young player. But after Rxf6! it seems that somehow White's attacking resources are too many. Nh5 discovered check at the end was a nice finish, White will take the rook on a8 with check.
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: "Hou Yu Doin'?"
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: After 3 hours and 45 minutes of uninterrupted analysis, Fritzie is saying that 20. Bxf6 is worth +1.71 and 20. Rxf6 a rather less impressive +1.03.


I've now fast forwarded to the position after 23...Rg8 and will leave that to soak for a few hours.

Apr-26-14  john barleycorn: Hou beat Yu? Hou! Uuh!
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: I went for Bxf6 immediately. Of course, in a puzzle position, I sort of knew the game would continue with the exchange sac.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: Two hours and twenty minutes later on the position after 23...Rg8, and Fritzie is giving 24. Qxf7 +0.88 and 24. Rxg8+ +1.07.

Not looking very convincing.

After 24. Qxf7, Fritzie recommends 24...Rxg3 (+0.88) and not the game continuation of 24...Qf8 (+2.5).

So now I've set him to look at the position after 24...Rxg3.

Apr-26-14  kevin86: I guessed the first move...not bad, eh!
Apr-26-14  vajeer: I went with 24.Rxg8
24...Kxg8 leads to a quick mate after 25. Qh6

25. Nxf6 Qg7
26. Qxe5 looks promising.

Apr-26-14  eaglewing: I think
24. ... Rxg3
25. hg Bg4
26. Nxf6 Ra7
27. Qxa7 Qxf6
might go for a counterattack with continual checks.
Apr-26-14  Patriot: Material is even.

A few candidates come to mind: Rxf6 and Bxf6.


20...Bxf6 21.Bxf6 gxf6 22.Nd5 Qd8 23.Qh5 Rg8 seems defendable.

20...Bxf6 21.Nd5 Qa7+ 22.Be3 doesn't seem right.


20...Bxf6 21.Nd5 Qa7+ followed by 22...Bd8

One more look at 20.Rxf6:

20...Bxf6 21.Bxf6 gxf6 22.Nd5 Qd8 23.Qh5 Rg8 24.Rxg8+ Qxg8 25.Nxf6 Qg7 26.Qxe5 Bb7 27.Qe7 looks dominating.

20...Bxf6 21.Bxf6 gxf6 22.Nd5 Qd8 23.Qh5 Rg8 24.Rxg8+ Kxg8 25.Qh6 is deadly.

I'll go with 20.Rxf6.

Apr-26-14  patzer2: I guessed 20. Rxf6 was the answer to this Saturday puzzle, but OTB I would have gone with 20. Bxf6 .

Though not a forced result the position arrived at 10 moves later after 30. Qxe5!, with an unstoppable discovered check in the offing, makes for an entertaining and pleasing finale.

Apr-26-14  Patriot: Close. I missed 21.Bxf6? Qb6+ and 22.Qxf6. And an earlier line (which should have been re-examined) actually is winning according to Houdini: <20...Bxf6 21.Nd5 Qa7+ 22.Be3 Qd7 23.Nxf6>. It takes more calculation to see it though.
Apr-26-14  patzer2: <eaglewing: I think 24. ... Rxg3>

After 24...Rxg3! (diagram below)

click for larger view

Fritz 12 indicates 20. Rxf6!? fizzles down to a small edge after 24...Rxg3!, when it becomes a tough nut for White to crack.

One possibility is 24... Rxg3! 25. hxg3 Qg8 26. Qxf6+ Qg7 27. Qd8+ Qg8 28. Qe7 Qxg3 29. Qe8+ Kg7 30. Qd8 h5 31. Qf6+ Kh7 32. Qf7+ Kh6 33. Qf8+ Qg7 34. Qd6+ Qg6 35. Qxe5 Bg4 (+.90 @ 20/45 depth) with an unbalanced and difficult position for both sides.

Apr-26-14  ProdigiousPoker: Not sure what Yu was thinking with 28. Bg4. Sets himself up immediately for the knight fork and yet another piece down. Might have been better off with 28. Be6. Thoughts?
Apr-26-14  Patriot: <ProdigiousPoker> 28.Be6 Qf6+ wins the bishop.
Apr-26-14  PJs Studio: I could not believe black didn't play 24...Rxg3! and I couldn't find anything crushing for white after it. 1.Removes one very important & powerful attacker and 2. Allows black to defend f6 with less a lot less effort. Whites moves all made perfect sense however.

Thanks for the analysis Patzer, Patriot and Once. You guys never fail me ;)

Apr-26-14  BOSTER: <P.Poker: Not sure what Yu was thinking with 28.Bg4>. " Might have been better to ask her out from the beginning if I was not so shy".
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White has a bishop and a knight for the bishop pair.

White must take into account the possibility of an intermediate check along the a7-g1 diagonal.

The obvious moves are 20.Bxf6 and 20.Rxf6, eliminating the best defender of the black king and freeing d5 for a knight.

In the case of 20.Bxf6:

A) 20... Bxf6 21.Txf6

A.1) 21... gxf6 22.Qh5

A.1.a) 22... Rg8 23.Rxg8+ Kxg8 24.Nd5 Qa7+ 25.d4 Be6 (25... exd4 26.Qh6 followed by Nxf6+, winning) 26.Nxf6+ Kf8 27.Qxe5 with attack and two pawns for the exchange looks favourable for White.

A.1.b) 22... Qb6+ 23.d4 Be6 (23... exd4 24.Nd5 Qd6 25.Qh6 Rg8 26.Rxg8+ Kxg8 27.Nxf6+ wins) 24.Qh6 Bg4 (24... Rg8 25.Qxf6+ Rg7 26.Qxg7#) 25.Rxg4 Rg8 26.Rh4 Rg7 27.Nd5 followed by Nxf6 with the threat Qxh7+ and mate next.

A.1.c) 22... Qa7+ 23.d4 looks similar to A.1.b.

A.2) 21... Qa7+ 22.Rf2 wins a piece.

B) 20... gxf6 21.Nd5

B.1) 21... Qa7+ 22.d4

B.1.a) 22... Be6 23.Nxe7 Qxe7 24.d5 seems to favour White but not immediately decisive.

B.1.b) 22... exd4 23.Qh5 d3+ 24.Kh1 Rg8 25.Rxg8+ Kxg8 26.Qh6 also looks good for White.

B.2) 21... Qd6 22.Qh5 Be6 (22... Rg8 23.Qxf7 looks good) 23.Qh6 Rg8 24.Nxf6 Bxf6 25.Qxf6+ Rg7 26.Qxg7#.

C) 20... Qa7+ 21.d4 seems to transpose to previous lines.

In the case of 20.Rxf6 the lines seem to transpose to those from 20.Bxf6 or to be analogous.

Apr-26-14  solver43: For better or worse :

20 Bxf6 Bxf6
21 Nd5 Qd8
22 Rxf6 gf
23 Qh5 Rg8
24 Qh6 Rxg3
25 hg Qg8
26 Nxf6 Qg7
It looked promising until 26...Qg7
Too many defensive resources for black

Apr-26-14  Bruce Graham: Some of the banter regarding names reminds me of the old baseball skit: 'Who's on first base?'
Apr-26-14  Conrad93: <I could not believe black didn't play 24...Rxg3! and I couldn't find anything crushing for white after it. 1.Removes one very important & powerful attacker and 2. Allows black to defend f6 with less a lot less effort. Whites moves all made perfect sense however. Thanks for the analysis Patzer, Patriot and Once. You guys never fail me ;)>

Black is in zugzwang.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <Hou Dares, Wins>
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