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Alisa Galliamova vs Valentina Gunina
Russian Championship Superfinal (Women) (2014), Kazan RUS, rd 9, Dec-07
Slav Defense: General (D10)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Dec-07-14  The17thPawn: <Paavoh> Thanks for turning me on to this game! Gunina was indefatigable and expertly maintained the tension instead of allowing white to trade down and simplify the position.
Dec-07-14  greed and death: Poor Galliamova didn't manage to get her Queen's Rook activated until move 46, while black (despite being down a knight for a rook) managed to dominate the game with <much> better piece activity.

A very interesting and instructive game.

Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: Geez, what a bloodbath!
Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: There will be gall, and there will be a gun.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: "<Gunina “does a Caruana”> After two rounds of the Women’s Russian Championship Superfinal in Kazan, Valentina Gunina was on 0/2 and you would have given long odds on her defending the title she won in 2013. After that, though, she never looked back, and a winning streak of six games in a row set her up for a last-round battle against hugely experienced local hero Alisa Galliamova. In the event of a draw the players would face a rapid play-off on the same day, but they made sure that wasn’t required."

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: "Gunina played Black and went for a somewhat dubious pawn sacrifice with <12…f6>, since, as she said after the game, she didn’t want to give her opponent the quiet positional game in which she’d feel most at home.

That calculated gamble resulted in her opponent spending a lot of time on her following moves, which would eventually prove crucial, but first Valentina would have to endure what seemed to be a knockout blow - <32.Nd6>...

Gunina admitted she’d completely missed this simple fork, which seemed to have won Alisa the Russian Championship. Only two moves later, though, Galliamova took the fateful decision to play <34.Qb1?> for the second time in the game...

Gunina almost instantly seized her chance with <34...Bxh2!> The problem now is that White can’t take the bishop due to Qg3+ then Rd2 and mate to follow. Either 34.Qe1 or 34.Qe2 would have eliminated that threat.

Alisa was now worse and simply looked lost, but objectively she had excellent chances of survival... if she could find a vital trick...

Here she played <39.Nxf6> and after <39…Qh6+> the position was lost. Instead <39.Bxf6+<>>! seems to hold, with the saving idea of <39…Kg8 40.Bg5!!> The clock was ticking, though, and Alisa could spare no longer than the 26 seconds she took for this championship-changing decision."


Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Hmm. White has a piece hanging but so does black. An eye for eye? Oh wait, the black queen has to guard the rook.

I got the first move right 34...Bxh2+, but that's it.

I have to say though, that was a long solution. I'm not sure if black saw it the entire way, or knew that she was winning somewhere along the lines.

Dec-12-15  kubbybulin: The calculation of the queen winning line is probably superengine territory. Does this week have eight days? If so I missed saturday and sunday.
Dec-12-15  kubbybulin: I could see that she most likely saw through 45...Qb2 and evaluated that as winning. If she solved the "black to move wins the queen in 21" puzzle then she could've given Fischer knight odds (for those of you familiar with Fischer's famous boast concerning women players).
Dec-12-15  morfishine: <34...Bxh2+> is the only move, Good Luck calculating 20 more moves
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: Black is one rook down.

White threatens 35.Rxf4.

The obvious move is 34... Bxh2+:

A) 35.Kxh2 Qg3+ 36.Kh1 (36.Kg1 Re2 and mate soon) 36... Re2 37.Rf2 (37.Rg1 Qh4#) 37... Qh4+ (37... Rxf2 38.Qg1 Rxb2 wins a pawn but the c-pawn can be a problem) 38.Kg1 Qxf2+ and mate next.

B) 35.Kf2 Qg3+ 36.Ke2 Qe3#.

C) 35.Kh1

C.1) 35... Qh6 36.Rxf6 looks bad.

C.2) 35... Qh5 36.Rf5 (36.Qxd3 Bg3+ 37.Kg1 Qh2#; 36.g3(4) Bg3+ 37.Kg2 Qh2#) 36... Qxf5 37.Kxh2 Qf4+, unclear.

C.3) 35... Bg3

C.3.a) 36.Rxf6 gxf6 37.Bxf6+ (37.Nxf6 d4 looks good for Black) 37... Kg8, with the threat 38... Qh5+ 39.Kg1 Re3, seems to favor Black.

C.3.b) 36.Rf3 Qh5+ 37.Kg1 Qh2+ 38.Kf1 Rxf3+ and mate in three.

C.3.c) 36.Rf5 Qh6+ 37.Kg1 Qh2+ 38.Kf1 Re3 wins.

Dec-12-15  stacase: It boiled down to 34... Bxh2+ as the best bet, but after that the solution reminded me of a non-linear chaotic climate model.
Dec-12-15  diagonalley: by move 30, black appeared to have got herself into a pickle - but she fought on desperately and imaginatively and it came good in the end... but IMHO the continuation is far too protracted to commend itself as a puzzle
Dec-12-15  Sularus: I don't want a migraine so I'll settle for Bxh2+ and consider this solved. :)
Dec-12-15  offramp: Queen takes knight pawn bishop x rook pawn, Q-R5 CHECK to RookRookRookheck! QUEEN takes knight checkmates.
Dec-12-15  caracas1970: what happened if white played 34.Qe2, will it hold better for white?
Dec-12-15  caracas1970: it will return the material gain, but I think it will hold better, after 34Qe2, black will play rook 34...Rd2 and take the bishop, white might play 35.Qf3 and hold the attack, after white retrieved the Knight in e8
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Black spends a great deal of time getting her queen into the opponent's gut. Then she sends the enemy king packing with little or no response from white...except to run. Check Jeremiah 52 in the bible for a similar tale.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: As the game note indicated, white is much better with 39 Bxf6+. Black has to play 39...Kg8.

So if white follows with 40 Bg5 below (to prevent 40...Qh6+) there does not appear to be a a way forward for black.

click for larger view

If black takes the bishop he loses the rook, for example.

Dec-12-15  LuckyChucky: "Non-linear" and "chaotic" - that's either redundant or oxymoronic
Dec-12-15  King.Arthur.Brazil: When the text said: hard, you know that a tricky sacrifice will come ... the lonely one is Bxh2+! And white is in a crushing demolishing water fall... nothing to stop it. Bon voyage...
Dec-12-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: Black is down a rook, but white's king has no immediate defenders other than the two-pawn shield. White's knight is undefended, but so is black's bishop. This points to a very logical and forcing continuation.

34... Bxh2+! forces checkmate in a few moves:

A. 35.Kxh2 Qg3+ 36.Kg1 Rd2 37.Rf2 Qxf2+ 38.Kh1/h2 Qxg2#

A.1 36.Kh1 Rd2 37.Rf2 Qh4+ (A simple interpolation that initially evaded me. After 37... Rxf2 38.Qg1, white is still alive) 38.Kg1 Qxf2+ 39.Kh1/h2 Qxg2#

B. 35.Kf2 Qg3+ 36.Ke2 Qe3#

C. 35.Kh1 (best) Qh6! (Qh5? 36.Nxf6) 36.Rf3 Bg3+ 37.Kg1 Qh2+ 38.Kf1 Rxf3+ 39.Ke2 (gxf3 Qf2#) Qxg2+ 40.Kd1/e1 Rf1#

C.1 36.Rf2 Bg3+ 37.Kg1 Qh2+ 38.Kf1 Re3 wins (Qh1# follows)

C.2 36.Bc1 Qa4 37.Rf3 (37.Re1 Qe1+ forces mate) Bg3+ 38.Kg1 Qh2+ 39.Kf1 Rxf3+ 40.gxf3 Qf2#.

C.3 36.(other) Bg3+ 37.Kg1 Qh2#

Time for review....

Dec-13-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: Ouch - the simple 36.Rxf6 (agb2002) demolishes my c line.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: For yesterday's Saturday Dec 12, 2015 solution 34...Bxh2+! is the only move that doesn't lose for Black.

Accepting the sacrifice results in mate-in-five after 34...Bxh2+ 35. Kxh2? Qg3+ 36. Kg1 Rd2 37. Qe4 dxe4 38. Rf2 Rxf2 39. a4 Qxg2#.

After declining the sacrifice with 35. Kh1, White is far from lost.

In the game continuation, White missed an opportunity to hold on and make a fight of it with 39. Bxf6+ when Fritz indicates play might continue 39...Kg8 40. Bg5 Qe5 41. Qf1 Ng6 42. Nf6+ Kh8 43. Rb1 Qxg5 44. Qxd3 Qh4+ 45. Kg1 Bf2+ 46. Kf1 Qxf6 47. Qf3 Qxf3 48. gxf3 Bxc5 49. b4 Be3 (-0.57 @ 26 depth, Deep Fritz 14). Here White's position in a difficult endgame looks to me to be about level, as the computer assessment of a slight Black advantage seems overly optimistic.

After 34. Qb1 Bxh2+ 35. Kh1, Fritz gives the alternative line 35... Qh5 36. Rf5 Qxf5 37. Kxh2 Qf4+ 38. Kh1 Qh4+ 39. Kg1 Rd2 40. Qf5 Rxb2 41. Rf1 Qg3 42. Qf3 Qe5 = (-0.16 @ 23 depth, Deep Fritz 14).

Dec-16-15  kubbybulin: I love it. Average chessplayer misses a knight fork and drops the exchange: 50% resign time, 40% plays it out and loses anyway, 10% holds the draw. Gunina: sacs on h2 and wins. Was this the tournament she dropped the first two games? Somebody name me an athlete who has more heart. Rapid time control and up, she has an even score with Yifan with two blacks and one white. Valentina is chess' rising star.
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