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Baskaran Adhiban vs Dmitry Andreikin
Tata Steel Masters (2017), Wijk aan Zee NED, rd 8, Jan-22
Formation: King's Indian Attack (A07)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 4 OF 4 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jul-28-18  ChessHigherCat: By George, I think I've got it:

21. Nxf5 Nxf5 22. Rxf5 Bxf5 23. Rxf5 gxf5 24. Nf6+ Qxf6 25. Qxf6

Leading to this:

click for larger view

Jul-28-18  ChessHigherCat: I saw 23...Qd4+ 24. Rf2 but I didn't think it was worth mentioning because it just loses a piece.
Jul-28-18  Cheapo by the Dozen: Honestly, after finding the answer quickly I didn't bother checking it, because this is labeled as a puzzle after all. :)

The main point was that Black could only recapture twice on f5 without leaving himself open to a fatal Nf6. The second point was that if White captures in the order R/R/N, the N will wind up creating its own mate threats. That was all easy. What I didn't check carefully was how the material came out if Black tried ... Rxe4.

Jul-28-18  jith1207: Yeah, an easy puzzle. Because it's a recent game and recent early week puzzle. But still a good one for those who have not played the whole game. I think the Rook retreating back to block the check was key and then the final pawn promotion tactics. Such a beautiful game and ending.
Jul-28-18  diagonalley: i was blinded by the temptation to start the exchange with the knight on KR4... DOH!
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: I think the point of today's Saturday puzzle solution, employing the double Rook sham sacrifice 21. Rxf5!! Nxf5 22. Rxf5! +- (+3.49 @ 30 ply, Stockfish 8), is White wins two minor pieces with the first Rook "sacrifice" 21. Rxf5!! because after 22. Rxf5! the second "sacrificed" Rook is poison.

If 22...gxf5, White wins the Black Queen after 22...gxf5 23. Nf6+ Qxf6 24. Qxf6 +- (+8.10 @ 32 ply, Stockfish 8).

If 22...Bxf5, White wins the Black Queen after 22...Bxf5 23. Nxf5 gxf5 24. Nf6+ Qxf6 25. Qxf6 +- (+7.46 @ 33 ply, Stockfish 8).

So, after 21. Rxf5!! Nxf5 22. Rxf5! +-, Black has nothing better than conceding the loss of two pieces for the Rook with 22...Qd4+ 23. Rf2 f5 +- (+3.49 @ 30 ply, Stockfish 8).

In the follow-up, after the best play moves 22...Qd4+ 23. Rf2 f5 +-, White wins slowly but surely after 24. Ng5 Qg7 25. Qxg7+ Kxg7 26. Bc6 +- (+2.79 @ 29 ply, Stockfish 8).

However, instead of 24. Ng5 +-, the computer indicates White can secure a stronger winning advantage with 24. Nxg6! hxg6 25. Qxg6+ Qg7 26. Nf6+ Rxf6 27. Qxe8+ Kh7 28. Re2 Bf7 29. Qe5 +- (+3.74 @ 31 ply, Stockfish 8).

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: A very pretty puzzle – if the 2nd exchange sacrifice is accepted, the knights collaborate with the queen to mate. What happens after 23... f5 raises an interesting question about these puzzles though.

The exchange sacrifices in themselves are more a Wednesday or Thursday puzzle, so what do I need to see to solve it as a Saturday? Funnily enough, not White’s actual move 24. ♘g5 which isn’t as strong as 24. ♘xg6 according to Stockfish.

That’s above my paygrade, even for a Saturday, so I’m looking for a less demanding standard to award myself full points. But the only alternative seems to be an assessment that even though I’m an exchange down, I’ve got the initiative and there are plenty of tactical possibilities – I’ll play the rook sacrifice and I’m pretty sure I can win the game.

But that feels like a cop out.

Don’t get me wrong – I think are leaving us to answer the “standards” question ourselves, and that’s fine by me. And I enjoyed the puzzle a lot anyway. That unexpected freeing of the 6th rank around the castled king to protect the f6 square as a landing for the ♘ is fun enough for me!

Jul-28-18  Walter Glattke: Instead of only 2 pieces for a rook white could win the quality with 21.Nxf5 Nxf5 22.Qf4 threatening g4: parry with 22.-Re7 23.g4 Nd4 (others knight lose or Ng7 Qh6) 24.Qh6 f6 25.Rxf6 Rxf6 26.Nxf6+ Kh8 27.Nxh7 Rxh7 28.Rf8+ Bg8 29.Qxh7+ (queen sac heehee) Kxh7 30.Rxd8 if correct, would be better. Parry 2: 22-Kg7 23.g4 Nh6 24.Qe5+ f6 25.Nxf6 Qd4!? 26.Nh5++ Kg8 27.Qxd4 cxd4 28.Nf6+ R+P for N
Jul-28-18  malt: 21.R:f5 N:f5 22.R:f5

(22.N:f5 B:f5 23.Ng5 Qd4+ 24.Kh2 Qg7 )
(22.N:f5 B:f5 23.R:f5 R:e4 )

22...Qd4+ 23.Rf2 f5
(23...Qg7 24.Nf6+ Kh8 25.Q:g7+ K:g7 26.N:e8+ )

24.Ng5 Qg7

Jul-28-18  trnbg: Why not 21.Nxf5 (instead of Rxf5) Nxf5 22.Rxf5 Bxf5 23.Rxf5 Qd4+ 24.Rf2 ? So White also gets two minor pieces for a rook, right?
Jul-28-18  GlennOliver: It was possible to intuit that the double sacrifice 21 Rf5 and 22 Rf5 might open up Black's defensive position and yield an advantage to White.

But I'm sure that even Adhiban's brilliance hadn't analysed that through to the eventual endgame 25 moves later.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: Black threatens Nxh6.

White can attack the black king with 21.Rxf5:

A) 21... gxf5 22.Nf6+ Qxf6 (22... Kh8 23.Qxh7#) 23.Qxf6 + - [Q vs r].

B) 21... Bxf5 22.Ng5 (22.Nxf5 Nxf5 23.Rxf5 Rxe4 24.Bxe4 gxf5 -24.Qd4+ 25.Rf2 wins a piece- 25.Bxf5 Qd4+ 26.Kg2 Qg7 with Black advantage) wins decisive material since after 22... Nf3+ 23.Nhxf3 Black doesn't have the resource Qd4+ Qg7.

C) 21... Nxf5 22.Rxf5

C.1) 22... gxf5 23.Nf6+ as in A.

C.2) 22... Bxf5 23.Ng5 as above.

C.3) 22... Qd4+ 23.Rf2 wins some material.

C.4) 22... f6 23.Rxc5 + - [2N+P vs r]. For example, 23... Qd4+ 24.Kh2 f5 25.Ng5 Re7 26.Nxe6 Rxe6 27.Rc7 Rf7 28.Rc8+ and mate in three.

D) 22... Ne2+ 23.Kh2 gxf5 (23... Bxf5 24.Ng4 as above) 24.Nf6+ as avove.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Pretty but a bit too obvious for Saturday.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: 24.Nxg6 was even more crushing.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <Walter Glatke> Our Stockfish 9 analysis of move 21...? indicates 21. Nxf5 = (+0.04 @ 22 ply) is only good for equality.
Jul-28-18  saturn2: < 21 Nxf5 Nxf5 22. Rxf5 Bxf5 23. Rxf5 gxf5 24. Nf6+ Qxf6 25. Qxf6>

<I saw 23...Qd4+ 24. Rf2>

I think the refiutation is rather 23..RxNe4.

Jul-28-18  5hrsolver: < trnbg: Why not 21.Nxf5 (instead of Rxf5) Nxf5 22.Rxf5 Bxf5 23.Rxf5 Qd4+ 24.Rf2 ? So White also gets two minor pieces for a rook, right? >

I think instead of 23..Qd4+ Black can respond with 23..Rxe4 24.Bxe4 gxf5 25.Bxf5 Qd4+ 26.Kg2 Qg7

That's why the double rook sacrifice is necessary.

21.Rxf5 Nxf5 22.Rxf5 Bxf5 23.Nxf5 (now there is no check on d4)gxf5 24.Nf6+ Qxf6 25.Qxf6

Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: A good pun for this game would be

"Baskaran Robbin' "

Premium Chessgames Member
  PawnSac: < Cheapo by the Dozen: Honestly, after finding the answer quickly I didn't bother checking it, because this is labeled as a puzzle after all. :) >

yea, a puzzle that has a solution longer than the first half of the game up to that point! lol

by the time i played it out to the end i could hear Paul singing.. "the long and winding road"

Premium Chessgames Member
  PawnSac: < thegoodanarchist: A good pun for this game would be "Baskaran Robbin' " > Submit it!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Breunor: It took me a long time with the computer to figure out why you need to take with the took as opposed to the knight on h4. I thought that is what the puzzle so hard. (Missed it)
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: < PawnSac: < thegoodanarchist: A good pun for this game would be "Baskaran Robbin' " > Submit it!>

Already did!

Jul-28-18  NBZ: Interestingly, 40. Nc2 was the subject of an earlier puzzle not long ago.
Premium Chessgames Member
  PawnSac: < SATURDAY PUZZLE white to move 21. ? >

< 21. Rxf5 Nxf5 >

only move, AND also clears d4 for the Q.
if ..gxf?? Nf6 or Ng5 wins the Q,
if ..Bxf5? Ng5 wins the Q.

< 22. Rxf5 Qd4+ >

again, the only move. if ..Bxf5? Nxf5 and white has the d4 square covered and threatens mate forcing ..gxf5 when both Nf6+ or the stronger Ng5! wins the Q. Ng5 gives white the choice of which square he would like to occupy with the Q.

< 23. Rf2 f5 >

almost forced to prevent Nf6+. If instead 23...Qg7 24.Nf6+ Kh8 Qxg7 Kxg7 Nxe8 and white remains up a clear piece.


click for larger view

In this position white chose 24.Ng5?! As correctly pointed out..

< Honza Cervenka: 24.Nxg6 was even more crushing. >

The stronger move is...

< 24. Nxg6 hxg6 >

if ..fxe4?? Rxf8+ Rx Qxf8#

< 25. Qxg6+ Qg7
26. Nf6+ Rxf6
27. Qxe8+ Kh7 >

..Qf8? when down 2 pawns would make no sense.
In such cases black should trade PAWNS not pieces!

click for larger view

28. Re2 Bf7 29. Qe5 Bxa2 30. Kh2 Rf7 31. Qxc5 Qxb2 32. Re5


Why did white choose this move? Did he not see Nxg6 ? First of all, the analysis done here is far easier than what Baskaran had to do over the board. I have no time pressure (neither does the reader). I can assess each position one step at a time and RECORD my thoughts, then move on to the next position. In the end, solutions at mere master level analysis WITH NO TIME LIMIT can be far more accurate than what has to be done OTB. For this very reason, we should not be so quick to criticize a GM (or ANY player for that matter) for choices (even mistakes) in anything other than correspondence games. The simple truth is that about 97% of ALL PLAYERS make worse choices on average during games UNDER THE SAME CONDITIONS. So then..

Why did white choose Ng5?! ?

Looking again at the KEY POSITION above...

If white is not absolutely certain about the outcome OTB, then he has to make a practical decision. In this case, if we interviewed Baskeran I think we would find that he thought since Ng5 kept more pieces on the board, it would give him better prospects in the event he did not assess the position accurately. Compare the two positions:

click for larger view

click for larger view

I think white's choice under such conditions is reasonable and justified.

Jul-28-18  Mayankk: That f5 is the main target point and that the Knight threaten mate were the two obvious points. The less obvious idea was that Queen can zigzag it’s way to prevent mate from a Ng5 mate threat on h7, by using the d4 square emptied by its knight.

So you need to delay the Nf5 capture and go with your two Rooks first. Since if knight is the last one to capture, Black has to lose its Queen to avoid mate after gxf5 and Nf6+. Note that the Nf5 knight successfully stops usage of d4 square while still threatening mate on g7.

I of course didn’t get this idea but nevertheless it’s an awesome game. And what an ending, befitting another puzzle on its own.

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