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Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Happy New Year

Hope to return in a few days. In the meantime... 


Tuesday, December 29, 2020

A Champion's Waning Years

     Before 1961, the great Soviet patriarch Mikhail Botvinnik (1911-1995) accepted only a handful of invitations to play in non–Communist Europe. But, that was still more tournaments than most of his compatriots because in those days players generally were not allowed to play outside the Warsaw Pact countries.
     Poor, naive Andre Lilienthal (1911-2010) thought he had limited opportunities because of national security concerns; he had an uncle who was an atomic scientist who was head of the atomic committee in the United States. 
     David E. Lilienthal (1899-1981) was an American-born attorney and public administrator, who was the oldest son of Jewish immigrants from Austria-Hungary. His mother came from Szomolany (now Smolenice) in Slovakia, emigrating to America at age 17. His father had served several years in the Hungarian army before emigrating to the United States in 1893. David is best known for his Presidential appointment to head Tennessee Valley Authority and later the Atomic Energy Commission from 1946 to early in 1950. 
     It was because of him that Andre claimed that the Soviet Union stopped letting him out of the USSR to go to tournaments. Despite Andre's claims, the actual family connection, if any, is not known. 
     Jan Timman felt that Botvinnik suffered from the “paralyzing realization of having achieved everything” when he became world champion in 1948 and after he lost the title, “a load had been taken off his shoulders” and he developed “an energetic style which was even better than the way he played just after the war.”
     Botvinnik admitted that in his match with Petrosian that he "played under unusually great pressure and tension.” After losing to Petrosian he had no rematch for which to prepare and so the tension was gone. 
     Although his playing career was winding down after the match with Petrosian, as late as February 1965 he hoped for another shot at the title. He harbored the hope that FIDE might order a rematch before Petrosian played his 1966 challenger. When that didn't happen Botvinnik tried to reach the top through his students and throuhg developing a winning computer chess program. 
     In 1963 the Botvinnik School of Chess had students spread across the country. It wasn't much of a school. Botvinnik met with the kids three or four times a year and gave classes and simultaneous exhibitions with clocks. The school failed after 18 months for lack of support. 
     In 1969 it was revived with face-to- face sessions with students twice a year and in between Botvinnik assigned homework such as analyzing an endgame or opening which was done by correspondence. His star pupil was 10-year-old Garry Kasparov. 
     Kramnik recalled how the school worked. Students would show four of their games, two wins, a draw and a loss and Botvinnik and Kasparov would add their comments. The next two days would be devoted to Kasparov simuls followed by two training games at a slow control. 
     Not everybody was impressed with the school. Alexey Shirov thought Botvinnik was too stubborn and Lev Psakis left in disgrace after a day devoted to training games. The reason? After scoring an easy win with black against "some girl," as white he played a highly speculative piece sacrifice on move 4. Apparently it wasn't appreciated and they stopped inviting him to training sessions. 
     After winning the 1973 World Junior Championship Alexander Beliavsky was invited to Botvinnik’s apartment in Moscow. He described how Botvinnik was using a badly chipped vintage chess set from the 1930s and after dinner they'd go through Beliavsky's games which Botvinnik would soundly criticize. The result was Beliavsky always left in tears believing he didn't understand anything about the game and never would. 
     Botvinnik’s last hurrah final was supposed to be a match with Bobby Fischer in the spring of 1970. The two negotiated through the Dutch organizers. Botvinnik wanted a best of 16 game match, but as usual, Fischer wanted no limit on the number of games; the winner would be the first to score six wins. 
     Of course, that was way too much for an ageing Botvinnik, but at some point he came to believe that he and Fischer had reached a compromise on a best of 18 games. It was then that Botvinnik began training with Boris Spassky. 
     However, Fischer was having none of it and insisted on the first to six wins. As a result the match collapsed because of what Botvinnik called Fischer's maniacal fear of returning to actually play. 
     The Dutch organizers replaced the match with a four-player tournament where they met each other four times. Spassky was first, Donner second and Botvinnik and Larsen tied for third and fourth. Botvinnik only scored +1 -2 =0. 
     After that tournament Botvinnik was through with competition because according to his daughter Olga, “He couldn’t create beautiful games anymore.”
     During his final days Botvinnik stated that he would die at home...all he needed was two to three good months to finish his scientific work. He spent them dictating ideas about his computer chess program. 
     When Botvinnik died he didn’t want any VIPs at his funeral and no chessplayers! He wanted to leave quietly, he said. 
     He was cremated and buried next to his mother and wife at Novodevichy Cemetery, not too far from the graves of Anton Chekhov ( a Russian playwright and short-story writer) and Mikhail Bulgakov (a Russian writer, medical doctor and playwright). 
      Here is one of his last games from a clock simul played in London in 1981 

Mikhail Botvinnik - Alan M. Byron

Result: 1-0

Site: 8 board clock simul, London

Date: 1981.04.08

Ruy Lopez

[...] 1.e4 e5 2.♘f3 ♘c6 3.♗b5 a6 4.♗a4 The Exchange Variation is 4.Bxc6. If white delays the exchange one move and plays 5.Bxc6 it's the Bayreuther variation, named after Alekhine vs Bogoljubov, 1934, 16th matchgame played in Bayreuth. If white exchanges at move 6 it's called Deferred Exchange Ruy Lopez Delayed or Steenwijker variation after Euwe vs H Kramer, 1940, played in Steenwijk. 4...♘f6 5.♗xc6 White aims to achieve long term positional pressure by trying to force black into an awkward defense set-up. 5...bxc6 In my database this move gives black better results that the far more popular capture with the d-Pawn. 6.♘c3
6.♘xe5 This allows black a number of ways to equalize. The most straight forward is 6...♕e7 7.d4 d6 8.♘c4 ♕xe4+ 9.♘e3
6...d6 7.d4 exd4 8.♕xd4
8.♘xd4 is only slightly less good. is slightly less promising. 8...♗d7 9.O-O ♗e7 10.♖e1 O-O 11.♕f3 with equality.
8...♗g4 This move seems to rarely work out well for black in the Ruy Lopez.
8...♗e7 9.e5 c5 10.♕d3 dxe5 11.♕xd8+ ♗xd8 12.♘xe5 ♗e7 13.O-O O-O with equality. Benjamin,J (2576)-Goldin,A (2598) /San Diego 2006)
9.e5 c5
9...dxe5 This looks dangerous at first glance, but it's actually black's best. 10.♕xd8+ ♖xd8 11.♘xe5 ♖d6 12.♘xg4 ♘xg4 13.O-O and in reality white will have few prospects of taking advantage of black's broken Q-side Ps.
9...dxe5 10.♕xe5+ ♗e7 11.♗f4 O-O 12.♕xc7 ♕xc7 13.♗xc7 ♗d8 14.♗xd8 ♖e8+ 15.♔f1 ♖axd8 Komodo evaluates this position at 0. 00.
10.♕e3 Forcing black's reply. 10...dxe5 11.♘xe5 ♗e6 Black's 8th move turns out to be a loss time. 12.O-O ♗d6 13.b3 O-O 14.♗b2 ♖e8 15.f4 ♗f5 16.♕f2 g6 Although this move result in a small weakening of the dark squares around the K it hardly seems enough to prove fatal, but Botvinnik will show its defects.
16...c4 The purpose of this nifty little move is to deflect the N from covering g4. 17.h3 Safest.
17.♘xc4 ♘g4 18.♕g3 ♗c5+ 19.♔h1 h5 and black has some counterplay on the K-side.
17...♕e7 18.♔h1 cxb3 19.axb3 with roughly equal chances.
17.♖ae1 c4 18.h3 Botvinnik doesn't take the bait. 18...cxb3 19.cxb3 h5 20.♔h1 So far Byron has battled his great opponent on a pretty even footing, but with his next move he goes astray. He should have covered his dark squares with 20...Bf8 20...♕c8 The idea here is not to sacrifice ...Bh3 because after ...Qxh3+ white can interpose his Q, but rather to play ...Qb7 which does threaten ...Bxh3. 21.♕h4
21.♕d4 threatening a discovered attack on the N was even more potent. 21...♗xe5
21...♖e6 might be a good practical choice as it introduces complications that may have challenged Botvinnik in a clock simul. 22.♘c6 ♖xe1 23.♖xe1 ♗xh3 24.♘e7+ ♗xe7 25.♖xe7 ♗xg2+ 26.♔xg2 ♕g4+
22.fxe5 with the advantage.
21...♖e6 22.♘f3
22.♘c6 was better. If 22...♗c5 23.♘a4 ♘d5 24.♘xc5 ♖xc6 and after 25. Qf2 and Qd4 white stands quite well.
22...♗e7 23.♘g5 ♘h7 After this black is lost.
23...♖xe1 would have left him with a decent game. 24.♖xe1 ♕d7 25.♕f2 ♖e8 with equality.
24.♘d5 ♗d8
24...♕d7 25.♘xe7+ ♕xe7 26.♖xe6 fxe6 27.♖c1 was better as in this position white has a decisive strategic advantage, but at least black can has reason to play on.
25.♕g3 ♕d7
25...c6 26.♕c3 Emphasizing black's datk square weakness. 26...f6 27.♘xe6
27.♘e3!27...♘xg5 28.fxg5 ♗e4 29.♘c4 with a winning position.
27...cxd5 28.♘xd8 ♕xd8 29.♕c6 ♖c8 30.♕xa6 wins for white
26.♘xe6 ♗xe6
26...♕xd5 hardly improves anything 27.♖e5 ♕d2 28.♕f3 ♕xb2 29.♕xa8 ♗xe6 30.♕xd8+ etc
27.♘e3 (27.f5 was equally good. 27...♗xd5 28.fxg6 winning outright.) 27...h4 28.♕f3 ♖b8 29.f5 gxf5 30.♘xf5 ♘g5 (30...♗xf5 31.♕xf5 ♕xf5 32.♖e8+ ♘f8 33.♖xf5 is winning for white.) 31.♕c3 Missing a forced mate, noit that it matters.
31.♕h5 f6 32.♕g6+ ♔h8 33.♗xf6+ ♗xf6 34.♕xf6+ ♔g8 35.♕xg5+ ♔f8 36.♖xe6 ♕xe6 37.♘d6+ ♕f6 38.♕xf6+ ♔g8 39.♕g6+ ♔h8 40.♘f7#
31...f6+⁠−32.♘xh4 ♗d5 33.♖f5
33.♖xf6 was equally good. 33...♗xf6 34.♕xf6 ♘e4 35.♕g6+ ♔f8 36.♗a3+ c5 37.♖xe4 ♖c8 38.♕f6+ ♔g8 39.♖e7 ♗xg2+ 40.♘xg2 ♕xe7 41.♕xe7 ♖d8 42.♕xd8+ ♔f7 43.♘f4 a5 44.♗xc5 ♔g7 45.♕f8+ ♔h7 46.♕f7+ ♔h8 47.♘g6#
33...♗e7 34.♖xg5+ fxg5
34...♔f7 doesn't save the game. 35.♘f5 ♗e6 36.♖g7+ ♔e8 37.♖xe7+ ♕xe7 38.♘xe7 ♖b6 39.♘d5 a5 40.♘xb6 a4 41.♖xe6+ ♔f8 42.♕xf6+ ♔g8 43.♕g7#
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Monday, December 28, 2020

Real or Fake?

     Some days you get the bear; some days the bear gets you. Recently the bear got me. The morning of the 24th I received a call informing me that my brother had peacefully passed away at his home at the age of 91. 
     By 10pm we had a foot of snow and while clearing the driveway the snowblower quit. Luckily I have a good neighbor who let me use his at 11 o'clock at night! Christmas morning saw an additional six inches. 
     Early Sunday morning saw an ice dam on the roof at the back of our house...the GFI switch on the heater cables in the gutter and roof had tripped. Then it was off to buy a new snowblower. Upon arrival home after setting it in the driveway I pulled the car into the garage and forgot to put the lift gate down resulting in breaking out the glass in the liftgate. After getting that mess cleaned up it was time to get the snowblower up and running and test it. 50 feet down the driveway the engine blew! 
     After loading it up to return to Home Depot my wife informed me we had no water. Fortunately it wasn't a frozen water pipe, but a broken water main a few streets away. And, that is why I am happy the past few days are behind us.  
The bear got me!

     Before the Christmas holiday I played over a few games from one of the oldest books in the remnants of my chess library, The Golden Treasury of Chess by Al Horowitz and the editors of Chess Review. 
     The Golden Treasury of Chess has a controversial history. It seems that the book has been published in many editions and that the man behind the original book was actually Francis J. Wellmuth. Chess historian Edward Winter discusses the topic on his site HERE.
     One of the games that caught my eye was a casual game played in Boston in 1892 between the eccentric US Master Franklin K. Young and the mysterious "L. Dore." Young occupies a unique niche in the chess world because of his serious effort to reduce chess to a mathematically exact system formulated on the principles of military science. He received some recognition around the late 1800’s and early 1900’s from world champion Emanuel Lasker, who referred to one of his books as "replete with logic and common sense." Today Young's work is treated with ridicule and scorn.  
     L. Dore was probably a member of the "Mandarins of the Yellow Button" in Boston. The Yellow Button was a pin worn in the hats of Chinese imperial officials to indicate high rank in the civil service. The Bostonians were a group of players in the late 19th century that included John F. Barry, C. F. Burille, F. H. Harlow, Dr. Edward M. Harris, C. F. Howard, Major Otho E. Michaelis, General William Paine, Dr. H. Richardson, C. W. Snow, Henry N. Stone, Franklin K. Young and Preston Ware. The group was the foundation of what would become the Deschapelles Chess Club in Boston. 
     The exact same game was played between Henry Atkins and Herbert L. Jacobs in London in 1915. Edward Winter discussed this controversy in post number 7096 HERE
     British player, author and columnist Leonard Barden, posting in an English chess forum, suggested that the Atkins v. Jacobs game is almost certainly fictitious and possibly so is the Young vs. Dore game. 
     Young played the Danish Gambit, an opening in which white sacrifices a Pawn or two for the sake of rapid development and the hope of getting an attack. However, with care black can accept one or both Pawns safely or simply decline the gambit and get good chances. 
     The Danish was popular with old masters like Alekhine, Blackburne and Mieses, but as good defensive lines were discovered for black in the 1920s it disappeared. Marshall used to play it, too, especially in simultaneous exhibitions. He wrote that his opponents eventually got booked up on it so he had to quit playing it. 
     In the game white's attack was hardly sound and black missed several wins, but it's fun to play over.

Franklin K. Young - L Dore

Result: 1-0

Site: Casual game, Boston

Date: 1892.11.08

C21: Danish Gambit

[...] 1.e4 e5 2.d4 exd4 3.c3 My database has 715 games and the results are about evenly divided between white and black wins with only about a quarter of them drawn. Among the more recent (1977 to 2018) games with both players rated over 2400 black has scored +13 -0 =5, not a good record for white! Some of the more recognizable names who have ventured the gambit are Rubinetti, De Firmian, Tisdall, and Nakamura (twice). 3...dxc3 If black wants to decline the gambit he should play 4...d5. Either way he scores well
3...d5 4.exd5 ♕xd5 5.cxd4 This looks pretty equal so it's hard to account for black's success. 5...♘c6 6.♘f3 ♗g4 7.♗e2 ♗b4+ 8.♘c3 Herzog,A (2455)-Flear,G (2455)/Graz 1984...the game is even.
4.♗c4 ♘f6 5.♘f3 While this develops a piece, it's not white's best choice.
5.e5 This is not so good either. 5...d5 6.exf6 dxc4 7.♕xd8+ ♔xd8 8.♘xc3 gxf6 9.♗f4 Porobija,A (2002)-Bosiocic,M (2563)/Split 2013. Black is in no danger and went on to win thanks to his two extra Ps.
5.♘xc3 This is the best move. 5...d5 6.♘xd5 ♘xd5 7.exd5 ♗b4+ 8.♗d2 ♗xd2+ 9.♕xd2 O-O This position is fairly even, In Tisdall,J (2420)-Olafsson,H (2515)/Vestmannaeyjum 1985 white eventually lost in a long ending.
5...♘xe4 Not really bad, but taking the b-Pawn assured him of a slight advantage.
5...cxb2 6.♗xb2 ♗b4+ 7.♘bd2 Now black could have had a slight advantage with either 7...O-O or 7...d5. However in Blackburne,J-MacLeod,N/New York 1889 both sides continued in imprecise fashion and black eventually won.
6.O-O ♘d6 Horrible defense...black blocks his own B and prevents the advance of his own d-Pawn.
6...cxb2 turns out to be a bit too risky as after 7.♗xb2 ♗e7 8.♖e1 ♘c5 9.♕d4 white has the initiative. 9...d5 (9...♘e6 loses to 10.♗xe6 dxe6 11.♕xg7) 10.♕xc5 dxc4 11.♕g5 Here, too, white stands much better.
6...♘f6 is reasonable as after 7.♖e1+ ♗e7 8.♘xc3 O-O black is quite safe.
7.♘xc3 White is much too optimistic! (7.♗b3 ♗e7 8.♘xc3 O-O 9.♘d5 leaves him with a very promising position.) 7...♘xc4 8.♖e1+ This is interesting. The ever optimistic Stockfish thinks black's advantage is about 1-3/4 Ps while Komodo thinks the game is nearly even. 8...♗e7 9.♘d5 ♘c6 10.♗g5 f6 Forced, but even so black's extra material outweighs the weakening of his K's position. 11.♖c1 This is simply horrible!
11.♗f4 d6 12.♘xe7 ♘xe7 13.♕a4+ c6 14.♕xc4 d5 leaves black two Ps down, but it was the best he had.
11...b5 This results in black forfeiting most of his advantage after white retreats his B to f4.
11...fxg5 12.♖xc4 O-O leaves black with a solid position and a winning material advantage.
12.♖xc4 Unsound!
12.♗f4 d6 13.♘d4 ♘6e5 14.♘xb5 c6 15.♘bc7+ ♔f8 16.♘xa8 cxd5 17.♕xd5 In this messy situation the chances have to be adjudged as being equal.
12...fxg5 For the record, this would lose after 13.♖ce4 d6
13...O-O 14.♘xe7+ ♘xe7 15.♖xe7 ♗b7 16.♘xg5 with a decisive attack. For example... 16...d6 17.♕h5 and mate is unavoidable.
14.♘xe7 ♘xe7 15.♕d5 ♖b8 16.♕xg5 and wins.
13.♘xf6+ With this move white can at least get a little play. 13...gxf6 14.♗xf6 ♖g8 and black should survive with minimal difficulty.
13...fxg5 This is about the only move that loses as it allows a fatal check on h5.
13...♔f8 getting out of the Rs line of fire was better. Castling is also good. After 14.♘xe7 ♘xe7 15.♕f3 ♗b7 Distracting the Q! 16.♕xb7 d5 and black is winning rather easily.
14.♕h5+ and wins. 14...g6 15.♘f6+ ♗xf6 16.♘xg6+ Any other move is to white's advantage. 16...♕e7 17.♖xe7+ Not necessary, but it does no harm. 17.Nxe7 was even better though. (17.♘xe7+ ♔f8 18.♘d5 etc.) 17...♗xe7 18.♘e5+
18.♘xh8+ was a move quicker. 18...♔d8 19.♘f7+ ♔e8 20.♘d6+ ♔d8 21.♕e8#
18...♔d8 19.♘f7+ ♔e8 20.♘d6+ ♔d8 21.♕e8+ ♖xe8 22.♘f7#
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Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Monday, December 21, 2020

Hastings Christmas Congress 50 Years Ago

     Because we're approaching the Christmas holiday I thought we would step back in time 50 years and take a look at the Hastings Christmas Congress of 1970/71. 
     Hastings is a seaside town on the south coast of England that is 53 miles south east of London. The town gives its name to the Battle of Hastings, which took place 8 miles to the northwest in 1066. Today, Hastings is a fishing port with the UK's largest beach-based fishing fleet and has an estimated population of over 92,000. 
     In Hastings, the summers are comfortable, the winters are long and cold and it is windy and partly cloudy year round. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from 38 degrees F to 69 degrees F. When it comes to cloud cover, the clearest part of the year begins around the end of March and lasts for a little over six months, ending in early October. On average December 29 is the cloudiest day of the year. Christmas is not a good time to visit. 
     An interesting weather fact is that Point Roberts, Washington in the United States which lies 4,784 miles away on the southernmost tip of the Tsawwassen peninsula, south of Vancouver, British Columbia is the most distant foreign place with temperatures most similar to Hastings. As seen in the photo from the Telegraph, it snowed during the 1970 Hastings tournament. 

     Looking at the crosstable the first impression is that the tournament had a high percentage of draws which it did, but with few exceptions they were hard fought and exciting draws. According to Robert Byrne many of the draws kept "spectators on the edge of their chairs" and material was "being sacrificed back and forth, for positional reasons as well as for attack" and "the onlookers had great difficulty comprehending the games, not knowing a great part of the time who was winning." Byrne also mentioned that on a couple of occasions he was congratulated when he was desperately fighting just to stay in the game!
     Lajos Portisch, the eventual winner, began with a series of draws and it looked like he was going to finish in the middle of the pack, but late rally enabled him to finish first. The Czech representative Vastimil Hort had to win in the last round to tie with Portisch, but he took too many chances against England's Peter Markland and ended up losng badly. East Germany's GM Wolfgang Uhlmann also blew his chance at tying for first by losing to England's Robert Wade. 
     The Yugoslav IM Zvonimir Mestrovic led with three straight wins, but then started playing recklessly and began losing. But, before his decline he won the brilliancy prize for his game against Byrne. In the game (given below) Byrne lost his Queen at move 17 on a simple hallucination when he thought saw a forced mate! Still, Byrne managed to put stiff resistance for another 17 moves. 
     Many time Hastings winner Svetozar Gligoric of Yugoslavia found himself in bad positions on several occasions, but somehow managed to escape. He also had some luck. In his game against Hort who was playing white in a K-Indian, Hort carefully planned a little trap to snare Gligoric's Queen. But, when the position was reached and the snare of the Queen was at hand, Hort forgot about the trap he had set and soon agreed to a draw! 
     Robert Byrne (April 20, 1928 – April 12, 2013) learned to play chess at the age of eight, was awarded the IM title in 1952 and the GM title in 1964. The 1972 US Championship was an Interzonal qualifying tournament and Byrne after tying for first place with Samuel Reshevsky and Lubomir Kavalek, won the three man play off to advance to the Leningrad Interzonal 1973. Leningrad was probably the highlight of his career as he finished only one point behind tournament winners Viktor Korchnoi and Anatoly Karpov. He lost his 1974 quarter final candidates match against Boris Spassky.

Robert Byrne - Zvonimir Mestrovic

Result: 0-1

Site: Hastings

Date: 1970.12.30

Sicilian: Richter-Rauzer Attack

[...] 1.e4 c5 2.♘f3 ♘c6 3.d4 cxd4 4.♘xd4 ♘f6 5.♘c3 d6 6.♗g5 The Richter-Rauzer Attack used to be very popular during the 20th Century. It is named after Ukrainian Vsevolod Rauzer and the German Kurt Richter. There is an overwhelming amount of theoretical material on it. 6...♗d7 7.♕d2 ♖c8 8.O-O-O ♘xd4 9.♕xd4 ♕a5 10.f4 h6 This is actually a mistake!
10...♖xc3 It's been known for a number of years now that this exchange sacrifice gives black an overwhelming winning percentage. 11.bxc3 e5 12.♕b4 ♕xb4 13.cxb4 ♘xe4 14.♗h4 g5 15.fxg5 ♗e7 16.♗e1 ♗xg5+ 0-1 Van der Sterren, P (2460)-Kristiansen,J (2445)/Plovdiv 1983 and black went on to win.
11.♗h4 g5 12.♗e1 This is far too passive a move to play aganst black's aggressive setup.
12.e5 Fights for the initiative. 12...gxh4 13.exf6 e6 14.♗e2 ♖g8 15.♗f3 ♗c6 16.♖he1 ♗xf3 17.gxf3 with a sharp position where both sides have chances. Socko,B (2641) -Dreev,A (2633)/ Lugo 2007
12.fxg5 is possible. After 12...hxg5 13.♗f2 b6 14.e5 An interesting P sacrifice. 14...dxe5 15.♕e3 ♗h6 16.♔b1 ♗e6 But here black is doing quite well.
12...♗g7 There were better ways to keep up the pressure
12...gxf4 Black has a very slight advantage after this. 13.♘d5 ♕xa2 14.♘xf6+ exf6 15.♗c3
15.♕xf6 ♖g8 16.♗c3 ♖g6 17.♕h8 ♔e7 18.♕d4 and black is winning. Preethi,R (2115) -Danilyuk, O (2075)/ Tashkent 2007
15...♖g8 16.♕d5 ♕xd5 17.exd5 ♗e7 and a draw was agrees. Dely,P-Pietrusiak,B/Polanica Zdroj 1965
13.g3 Byrne's play is uncharacteristically passive. (13.e5 ♘h5 14.g3 gxf4 15.gxf4 ♗c6 16.♘b5 with a double edged position.) 13...♗c6 14.♗h3 O-O Mestrovic is not interested in playing it safe by moving his R away from the B. 15.♗xc8 ♘xe4 16.♘xe4 ♕xa2
16...♗xd4 17.♗xa5 ♗e3+ 18.♗d2 ♗xe4 19.♗xb7 ♗xd2+ 20.♖xd2 ♗xb7 (20...♗xh1 21.♗xh1 is winning for white.) 21.♖e1 with a winning position.
17.♕xg7+ 17.Qb4 kept the chances even, but somehow Byrne thought he saw a forced mate. 17...♔xg7 18.♗c3+ ♔g6
18...♔h7 19.♗f5+ ♔g8 20.fxg5 ♗xe4 21.♗xe4 and while there is no mate white has enough compensation for the Q that he can boast of what should be a winning advantage...Stockfish won 7 Shootouts from this position.
19.♗xb7 was somewhat better. 19...♗xb7 20.♖he1 but here, too, black is better.
19...exd6 20.♖xd6+ f6 White's B is unfefended plus his R is threatened by ...Qa8+ so he has to lose something. 21.♖e1 ♖xc8 22.♖xf6+ ♔h5 An odd square but the K fonds a safe haven here. 23.h3 ♖e8
23...♕a1+ 24.♔d2 ♖d8+ 25.♔e2 ♕a4 and there's no way to meet ...Qxc2 26.♖c1 ♕e4+ mates in 3.
24.g4+ ♔h4 25.♖xh6+ ♔g3 26.♖xe8 ♗xe8 27.fxg5 I might appear that white has succeeded in at least equalizing, but Mestrovic has everything under control. Looking at this position, I wonder how many non-masters would fail to win as white? 27...♕a1+ 28.♔d2 ♕g1 29.♖e6 ♗f7 30.♖f6 ♗d5 31.g6 How big a threat is this P?! 31...♕g2+ 32.♔d3 ♕xh3 33.g7 ♕xg4 34.♗d4 The P is no threat at all, but of course it can't be taken. 34...b5 (34...♕xg7 35.♗e5+ ♔g4 36.♖f4+ ♔g5 37.♗xg7 ♔xf4 draw.) 35.b4
35.g8=♕ ♗xg8 36.♗e5+ ♔h3 37.♔e3 (37.♖f8 ♗h7+ 38.♔e3 ♕e4+) 37...♕g5+ 38.♔e4 ♕d2 wins another P.
35...♕d1+ 36.♔c3 ♕a1+ Black actually mates a couple of moves quicker with 36...Qe1+, but realizing he was quite lost Byrne resigned here. A very nice finish by Mestrovic.
36...♕a1+ 37.♔d3 ♕d1+ 38.♔c3 ♕e1+ 39.♔b2 ♕xb4+ 40.♔c1 ♕xd4 41.♖f5 ♗c4 42.g8=♕+ ♗xg8 43.♖xb5 ♗c4 44.♖b7 ♕c3 45.♔b1 ♕a3 46.♖b3+ ♗xb3 47.cxb3 ♕xb3+ 48.♔a1 ♕c3+ 49.♔b1 a5 50.♔a2 a4 51.♔b1 a3 52.♔a2 ♕b2#
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