Posts Tagged ‘Beliavsky’

The Fabulous 10s: Accidental Brilliancies born of blitz

April 9, 2010

9. Nd2 King’s Indian Confuzzlement

Sometimes blitz games create confusion and in the cauldron of confusion bubble forth novelties and “brilliancies.”  Here is a case in point.

IM Aries2 – GM Fier  ICC 5 minute blitz

According to Fier’s finger notes, he is 22 years old, from Brazil, and has a 2581 FIDE rating.  What does one do against a high rating?  Just play directly!

1. Nf3 Nf6 2. d4 g6 3. c4 Bg7 4. Nc3 O-O 5. e4 d6 6. Be2 e5 7. O-O Nc6 8. d5 Ne7 9. Nd2! Somehow the most logical looking move.  I recently made notes to Beliavsky-Nakamura, indicating where white could have played more strongly (Al reached a great game as white then went wrong in the complications).

9…Nd7 Kasparov’s “old” 9…a5 might be better.

10. b4 f5 11…a5 would transpose to a game I won vs GM Peter Biyiasis in Philadelphia 1982 after 12. bxa5 Rxa5 13. a4.  White stands better there.

11. c5 Nf6 11…dxc5 12. bxc5 Nxc5 13. Ba3 offers white great play for the pawn.

12. f3 f4 13. Nc4 g5 14. a4

The course of the game suggests white might be able to do better dispensing with this move and playing 14. Ba3 straightaway.

14…h5 15. Ba3 Ne8 16. Nb5! a6

Pull the trigger!

17. Nxc7! The accidental blitz brilliancy!  This doesn’t regain the piece back right away, but it does set black difficult problems.

Qxc7 18. b5 In blitz, this is almost impossible to solve as black!

18…dxc5 The problem is that a normal defensive move, 18…Rf6, (trying to get white’s dark square bishop off the board), is met by 19. cxd6 Nxd6 20. Nxd6 Rxd6 21. Rc1 Qb8 22. b6! establishing a crushing bind!  A very aesthetic line – white disdains material and keeps his queen bishop.  Feast your eyes on some more moves here: 22…Bf8 23. Qb3 Ng6 24. Rc7! Rd7 25. d6+ Kg7 26. Rfc1! and wins!

19. d6 Nxd6 20. Qxd6 Qxd6 21. Nxd6 b6 22. a5?! Too fancy.  White had “chess memory” of Ginsburg-Christiansen, US Championship 2006, (see position after move 37W) where pawns opposed each other like this with great force for white (also, curiously, Ginsburg-Kriventsov, US Ch. 2006 – after move 23W).  The correct line was the simple mundane 22. Nxc6 Rfxc8 23. bxa6 and white is completely winning.

22…axb5 23. axb6 b4 24. Bc4+ Kh7 25. Bb2 Rb8 26. b7?? Another huge lemon and this one more serious.  The obvious 26. Ra7! won.  The reason being 26…Rxb6 27. Rxe7 Rxd6 28. Bxe5! and wins.

26…Bxb7 27. Ra7 Rfd8? 27…Nc8! would have turned the tables and black would get good winning chances!

28. Rxb7 Rxb7 29. Nxb7 Rd2 30. Rb1 g4 31. Be6 Interesting technical note: the computer points out here 31. fxg4! hxg4 32. Bf1! not giving black ideas against the f3-pawn that happened in the game.

31…gxf3 32. gxf3 c4? Panicky.  32…Ng6 was tougher.

33. Bxc4 Ng6 34. Kf1? 34. Bf7! ended it because 34…Nh4 35. Bxh5 protects f3!  At this point, white didn’t have much time left.

Nh4 35. Be2 Bf8 36. Na5? 36. Bxe5 won but white was just trying not to lose on time.

Ng6 37. Nc4 Rc2 38. Bxe5 Rxc4 39. Bxc4 Nxe5 40. Be2 Bc5 41. Rc1 Bd4 42. Rc7+ Kg6 43. Rb7 Bc3 44. h4 Kf6 45. Bd1 Ng6 46. Rb5 Nxh4 47. Rxh5 Ng6 48. Rb5 White should play 48. Rf5+ then run the king up.

48…Ne5 49. Ke2 Kg5 50. Bb3 Kh4 51. Rb8 Kg3 52. Rg8+ Kh3 53. Be6+ Kh2 54. Rf8 Kg3 55. Rg8+ Kh2 56. Rf8 Kg3 57. Rg8+ {Game drawn by mutual agreement}

A good blitz fight, don’t you think.  And some possible theoretical importance in the Nd2 King’s Indian!

From The Archives of Chess Today

Try this study!  (Golubev,  1984).

White to play and win.

The Fabulous 00s: Beliavsky and Gelfand Hopelessly Confused by Nakamura’s King’s Indian

January 9, 2010

The Sharpest King’s Indian

At the World Team today GM Nakamura scored a key victory leading the USA over Israel, 2.5 – 1.5  Last year, Nakamura also confounded GM Beliavsky in the same variation at the “Rising Stars vs Experience” match in Holland.  Let’s see this perplexing King’s Indian.

[Event “Rising Stars vs Experience”]
[Site “Netherlands”]

[Date “2009.??.??”]
[White “Beliavsky, Alexander”]
[Black “Nakamura, Hikaru”]
[Result “0-1”]
[ECO “E97”]

For a certain time, Beliavsky played very strongly in this sharp line.
1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. Nf3 O-O 6. Be2 e5 7. O-O Nc6 8. d5
Ne7 9. Nd2

Starting Point

9…Ne8 Old school logic didn’t like this move; it doesn’t control c5. In Kasparov’s heyday, it was thought black needed  Nf6-d7 and…a7-a5 in some order to hold white up.  We might see a resurgence of ….a5 if white’s resources pointed out in this article hold up.

10. b4 f5 11. c5 Nf6 12. f3 f4 13. Nc4 g5 14. a4 Ng6 15. Ba3 Rf7

Toddlin' down the main line road

Doesn’t it look like white is faster and therefore better?  It looks that way to me.  That means we should be trying very hard to figure out what Beliavsky and Gelfand did wrong, since it’s counter-intuitive!

16. a5(!)

(In today’s Gelfand-Nakamura game, very strange things happened after black blitzed out the refreshingly barbaric pawn storm  16. b5 dxc5 17. Bxc5 h5 18. a5 g4 19. b6 g3 20. Kh1 Bf8 21. d6 axb6 22. Bg1 Nh4!

Black plays to bother the white king and threatens a standard sac.  Gelfand’s response is suprisingly weak for this veteran 2700-plus player playing white.  Do you think part of the reason was that black was playing instantly?  Sometimes that leads the other player to overlook key resources and become rattled.

Puzzle for Boris

23. Re1? (White has to recognize the danger and play the non-standard 23. hxg3! fxg3 24. Be3! after which black’s knight on h4 just blocks.  For example, 24… Bh3 25. Rg1! Bxg2+ 26. Rxg2 Nxg2 27. Kxg2 Bxd6 28. Nxd6 Qxd6 29. Qxd6 cxd6 30. Bc4 and white is on the better side of a draw.  On other black moves, white proceeds in the center and the queenside.  Bg5 is also threatened in some lines and at least, white is not getting mated!

23… Nxg2! Since black was blitzing, it was probably all prep.  Still, it is amazing that despite the oceans of time white consumed, he seems to have missed the tactical detail of the “forever” mate on g2 stopping his intended capture of black pieces.
24. dxc7? Another mistake.  He has to try 24. Kxg2 Rg7 25. dxc7 gxh2+ 26. Kh1 hxg1=Q+ 27. Rxg1 and white appears safe.  Can black improve?

24… Nxe1! Now it’s all over; white has embarrassingly lost.

25. Qxe1  g2+ 26. Kxg2 Rg7+ 27. Kh1 Bh3 28. Bf1 Qd3! Oops.  That g2 mate again.  What a debacle!

29. Nxe5 Bxf1 30. Qxf1 Qxc3 31. Rc1 Qxe5 32. c8=Q Rxc8 33. Rxc8 Qe6 and white gave up, 0-1 Gelfand-Nakamura World Team 2010.

Going back to Big Al Beliavsky, where white has good chances (at this point!),

16… h5 17. b5 dxc5 18. b6! I like Beliavsky’s way of NOT taking on c5 yet with the bishop as in the Gelfand-Nakamura game .

18…g4 19. bxc7 Rxc7 20. Nb5! (20. Qb3 g3 21. Nb5 Nxe4 22. fxe4 (22. h3 Qh4 23. d6 Bxh3 is black’s main idea, and it works!) 22…Qh4 and black crashes through.  Alexander’s move looks highly logical)

20… g3 This is black’s only move.  Still doesn’t it look like black’s position is hanging by a thread?

The obvious threat is Nxe4 and Qh4.  I think white’s next move is not the best.  This is the critical moment that I bet Al wishes he could do over.  Up to now, I find white’s play to be fantastically logical and he’s made inroads on the queenside and the center.  He has to deal with black’s (only) play against his King involving a N/f6 sacrifice and then Q to h4 with an intended mating attack.   This unidimensional idea, though, is hard to stop and explains the appeal of the line from black’s point of view.  Looking at the next diagram, how to finesse it so that black’s attack is stopped (if the attack is stopped, white’s positional trumps should win)?

Puzzle for Big Al

21. Nxc7? This allows the threat.  Better, I think, is 21. Qc2!! disallowing black’s intended tricks.  For example, none of black’s standard knight sacs work now. 21… Nxe4? (21… Nxd5? 22. exd5 Qh4 23. h3 Bxh3 24. gxh3 Qxh3 25. Bd3! (Don’t you like how the subtle 21. Qc2!! guards the h2 square laterally, I do!) 25… Nh4 26. Be4 g2 27. Rfe1 and white wins) 22. Qxe4 Qh4 23. hxg3! Exploiting the pin; black cannot organize the standard mate now.  23…Qxg3 24. Nxc7 Nh4 25. Rf2 Bh3 26. Bd3!  and it turns out that white is one that wins by attack on black’s king, a refreshing change (from white’s point of view).  Continuing, 26… Bxg2 27. Qh7+ Kf7 28. Nxe5+ Ke7 29. Bxc5+ Kd8 30. Ne6+ and mates.

In the game, white missed some more tactical details and lost, but I think we should focus on the 21. Qc2! improvement.

For completeness, 21. Qc2! Ne8? also fails.  22. Nxc7 Qh4 23. h3 Bxh3 24. gxh3 Qxh3 25. Bd3! (always this resource to use the white queen in defense!) 25…Nxc7 and now white beats black back with an aesthetic defense: 26. Qg2 Qd7 27. Qh1!! h4 28. Kg2! and wins.  Wow!

And if black moves the rook from c7 admitting the attack is over, it is hopeless: 21. Qc2! Rf7 22. Bxc5 and 22. Ncd6 are both crushing.   21. Qc2! Rd7 22. Bxc5 is similarly winning.

21… Nxe4 22. Ne6 Bxe6 23. dxe6 gxh2+ 24. Kxh2 Qh4+ 25. Kg1
Ng3 26. Bxc5 e4 27. Ra4 Rc8 28. Bxa7 b5 29. Rb4 bxc4 30. Bxc4 Qh1+ 31. Kf2 e3+ 32. Bxe3 fxe3+ 33. Kxe3 Nxf1+ 34. Bxf1 Qg1+ 0-1

Conclusion:  I think white should be able to play accurately and maintain an edge in this extremely sharp variation.  However, he has to be fully awake and as tactically alert as black!

Why So Serious?

It’s good to break up theory with some blitz.

[Event “ICC 5 0”]
[Site “Internet Chess Club”]
[Date “2010.01.10”]
[White “aries2”]
[Black “FredyMatsuura”]
[Result “1-0”]
[ICCResult “Black resigns”]
[WhiteElo “2404”]
[BlackElo “2212”]
[Opening “French: Winawer, Alekhine (Maróczy) gambit”]

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Ne2 Nf6?! 5. e5 Nfd7 6. a3 Be7?! 7. f4 b6?! 8. f5! exf5?! 9. Nxd5 Bb7 10. Nef4 O-O 11. Bc4 c5? 12. e6! Nf6 13. exf7+ Kh8 14. Nxf6 Bxf6 15. Qh5! {Black resigns} 1-0

The Fabulous 00s: Strong Chess on your Phone!

April 2, 2009

On your iPhone more particularly – Glaurung and Shredder!

Glaurung is a very strong and free program available from the iPhone “Apps Store.”  I will post some Glaurung games that I contested on my iPhone 3g – it lets you save the games on the phone as PGN!  What progress in the field of computer chess – a program in excess of 2500 USCF strength running on a slim svelte iPhone – I am very impressed!   It allows “takebacks” so hapless humans can takeback many times…. and still not win.   One of the nice features is that when the human taps on the piece to move, the computer draws blue dots on the screen of all that piece’s legal move destinations.  Then the human just taps on one of the blue dots.  The iPhone relies on human finger tapping, not a Treo-style stylus.

“flyer” on ICC also alerted me to Shredder on the iPhone:  “Shredder for iPhone is available now…it rates your play, has a million-move opening book, and 1,000 exercises…though I’m not sure how strong it is :-)”

And again “flyer”:   flyer (18:28 06-Apr-09 EDT): Cyber Chess Ultimate let’s you play on ICC!:


Here Comes Technology

Oh some chess?  A Snappy Caro-Kann Gamelet

The point of this site (besides robot cartoons) is chess (and nominally, chess history). I like the word ‘gamelet’.  It was used a lot in Reinfeld and Chernev books.  Here’s an ICC blitz gamelet

[Event “ICC blitz”]
[Site “cyberverse”]
[Date “2009.04.14”]
[White “aries2”]
[Black “chessIPO1”]
[Result “1-0”]
[ECO “B18”]

1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4 Bf5 5. Ng3 Bg6 6. h4 h6 7. N1e2!? A great blitz weapon.


7…e6 8. Nf4 Bh7 9. Bc4 Nf6 10. Qe2 Nd5 11. c3


 11…Be7? A weak move that gives white the g7 point to attack.  An interesting try is 11… Qd6!? that wound up as a draw in two example database games.

On the other hand, 11… Nxf4?! 12. Bxf4 Bd6 13. Qg4 Bxf4 14. Qxg7 Ke7 15. Nh5! is bad for black and white duly won, 1-0 Rubinetti,J-Benko,F/Buenos Aires 1965.

12. Ngh5! O-O?! Another misstep.  Correct is the cold-blooded 12… Rg8! and now, for example, 13. O-O!? Bxh4! 14. Re1 Be7 15. Qe5 Kf8 16. Nxe6+ fxe6 17. Nf4 Bf5 18. Nxe6+ Bxe6 19. Qxe6 Qd7 20. Qe4 Na6 21. Qf3+ and now the computer indicates a fantastic defense resource: 21…Bf6! 22. Bxh6 Rh8 23. Bd2 Kg8! and black holds.

13. Qg4 I did not consider (but should have) the tricky 13. Bxd5!? exd5! (13… cxd5? 14. Nxg7! Kxg7 15. Qe5+ f6 (15… Kg8 16. Nh5 f6 17. Qg3+ forces resignation) 16. Nxe6+ Kh8 17. Qg3 Rg8 18. Nxd8 Rxg3 19. fxg3 Bxd8 20. Bxh6 with a big ending edge) 14. Qe5 f6! (14… Bf6? 15. Nxf6+ Qxf6 16. Qxf6 gxf6 17. Rh3 is horrible for black) 15. Qe3 Qe8 and black holds on; hard-to-see defense!

13… Bf6 14. Nxg7! A standard, but aesthetic, blow.  With colors reversed, Beliavsky once landed this tactic against ex-WC Karpov on the g2 square in a stodgy QGD and won as black! I recommend that the readers consult the excellent book “Uncompromising Chess” by Beliavsky to improve their game.

14…Bxg7 15. Nh5 Bg6 16. Nxg7 Kxg7 17. h5 Nf6


Position after 17…Nf6.  An interesting moment. 

18. Bxh6+?! I didn’t consider the very strong 18. Qg3! Ne4 (18… Rh8 19. hxg6 fxg6 20. Bf4 Nbd7 21. Bd3 Qe8 22. O-O-O and white wins) 19. Qe5+ Qf6 20. Bxh6+ Kxh6 21. hxg6+ Kg7 22. Rh7+ Kg8 23. Qxe4 Qxg6 24. Qxg6+ fxg6 25. Rxb7 and it’s all over.  The text allows black a surprising way to wriggle out to near-equality.

18… Kxh6 19. hxg6+ Kg7 20. Qg5!  White can go wrong with the unsound 20. Rh7+??  Nxh7 21. gxh7+ Kh8! and white can resign.


Position after 20. Qg5! —  Decision time.

20… fxg6? 20… Rh8!! is a great defense. 21. gxf7+ Kxf7 22. O-O-O Na6 (just getting stuff out) 23.
Qe5 Nd5! (23… Qd7? 24. Rxh8 Rxh8 25. g4 with a big initiative) 24. Bxa6 bxa6 25. c4 Nb6 26. Rde1
Qf6 27. Qc7+ Qe7 28. Qxc6 Rac8 29. Qf3+ Qf6 30. Qxf6+ Kxf6 31. c5 Nd5 32. Kd2 and white can pretend to have a small edge here.

21. Rh6 Now white wins.

21…Qe8 22. Bd3 Nh7 23. Rxg6+ Kh8 24. Qh6 For some reason the stronger check, 24. Qe5+!, did not come to my mind.  After 24… Rf6 25. Rh6 white wins.  When I played this move, I had in mind the nice game continuation, but it’s not forced.

24… Qf7 25. Rf6! 1-0 A pleasing end to a pleasing gamelet.  Black is caught in a cross pin and resigns.


Final position after 25. Rf6!

What’s on the Horizon

We all know Ilya Nyzhnyk (up and coming 12 year old prodigy who needs a vowel).  Who’s after him?  Here are some more youthful Russian prodigies.


Actually as an ethnic quiz identify the NON-Russian in the above photo.

And To Conclude – Some Reader Queries

Some readers were asking, “is it true sushi is served sometimes with real gold leaf?”  Yes it is. For example, on Avenue A in New York City, “Le Miou”.


That’s real gold leaf!  Nutritious?  Dunno, probably not.

Others were asking, “What’s the best looking motorcycle cruiser?”  I would vote for the Victory 8-ball.


Victory 8-ball.  Best Looking?