Victor Korchnoi - Anatoly Karpov [D37]

Baguio City/Baguio City, Phillipines (21) 1978


1. c4 Nf6 2. Nc3 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. d4 Be7 5. Bf4 O-O 6. e3 c5 7. dxc5 Bxc5 8. Qc2 Nc6 9. Rd1 Qa5 10. a3 Re8!?

Supporting ...e5 directly while clearing the f8 square for the Bishop's retreat. The book move 10... Be7 does have a better reputation. And to enter into the complications following 10...Re8!? without plenty of analysis under your belt would be a mistake.

 

11. Nd2

White's alternatives are not promising:

a) 11. Be2 e5!? There is really no good safe alternative for Black. 12. cxd5 (12. Bg3 d4!) 12... exf4 13. dxc6 fxe3 14. b4 exf2+ 15. Kf1 Qxa3 16. bxc5 bxc6 Black will have three pawns for the piece, open lines, and threats on the White King. The idea of Ra8-b8-b2 is one way of getting the attack going. 17. Qc1 Qa5! 18. h3 Rb8 19. Rd4? Rb3!-+ 20. Nb1 Rbe3 21. Qd2 Qxd2 22. Nbxd2 (22. Rxd2 Ne4!) 22... Rxe2 0-1 Banas,J-Ac,M/Sala 1987 (22)

 

b) 11. b4? Nxb4! 12. axb4 Bxb4 13. Be5 Ne4 14. Rc1 f6

 

c) 11. Ne5?! d4 12. Nxc6 bxc6 13. exd4 (13. Qa4 Qb6 ) 13... Bxd4! 14. Rxd4?! e5

11... e5?

This move is universally condemned. Timman calls it "consistent but bad" and goes on to speculate that Karpov and his team recognized that it was bad but expected to gain enough from the element of surprise to simply overwhelm Korchoi with the complications that follow. In any event, I seek to show in my analysis that Black has many practical chances here.

 

Beliavsky had analyzed the superior 11... Bf8! but the complications that follow are difficult for both players to fathom:

12. Nb3

(12. Bg5!? dxc4! (12... Qd8?! 13. Nde4!) 13. Bxf6 gxf6 14. Nxc4 Qg5!? (14... Qh5 15. Be2 Qg6) 15. g3 (15. Ne4!?) 15... e5 16. Nd6 Bxd6 17. Rxd6 Bf5 )

 

12... Qd8 13. Bg5

(13. cxd5 exd5 14. Be2 Be6 )

 

13... h6 14. Bxf6 Qxf6 15. cxd5 exd5 16. Nxd5 Qg5 17. Nc7

(17. h4!?)

 

17... Bg4 18. Rd5

(18. Rd2 Nb4! 19. axb4 (19. Qb1?! Bf5!) 19... Rac8 )

 

18... Nb4!! 19. Rxg5[] Nxc2+ 20. Kd2 hxg5 21. Nxa8 Nxa3

(21... Rc8!? )

 

22. Nc7 Bb4+ 23. Kd3 Rd8+ 24. Nd4 Ba5 25. bxa3 Bxc7 26. Be2 Bxe2+?!

(26... Be6 )

 

27. Kxe2 Bb6 28. Rb1 Bxd4 29. exd4 b6

1/2-1/2 Tonkonogy,A-Stoyko,S/New Jersey 1978 (66)

12. Bg5

An interesting idea is 12. Bg3!? protecting f2 12... Nd4 13. Qb1

(13. exd4 exd4+ 14. Ne2 Ne4 (14... b6!?) (14... dxc4!?) 15. b4 (15. cxd5 Bf5 16. Qc4 Nxg3 17. hxg3 d3) 15... Qxa3 16. bxc5 Nxc5)

13... Bf5 14. Bd3 e4 15. Bc2

(Better perhaps is 15. Bf1! Bxa3! 16. exd4

(16. cxd5 Bb4)

(16. Rc1 Bb4 17. exd4 e3 18. Nb3! (18. Qxf5 Bxc3 19. bxc3 (19. Rxc3 exd2+ 20. Kxd2 Ne4+) 19... exd2+ 20. Kxd2 Ne4+->) 18... Bxb1 19. Nxa5 e2 20. Bxe2 Bd3 21. Kd1 Bxe2+ 22. Nxe2 Bxa5=)

(16. bxa3 Qxc3 17. Rc1 Qxa3 )

16... e3 17. Nb3 (17. Qxf5 exd2+ 18. Kxd2 Bxb2-+) 17... Qb4 18. Bd3 Bxb2 19. Qxb2 Bxd3 20. Rxd3 exf2+ 21. Kxf2 dxc4 22. Rf3 Ng4+ 23. Kg1 cxb3 24. Nd5 Qc4 25. h3 Re2 26. Qxb3 Qxd4+ 27. Ne3 )

15... Nxc2+ 16. Qxc2 dxc4 17. Nxc4 Qa6 18. Nd6 Bxd6 19. Rxd6 b6 20. Qe2 Bc8 21. Nb5? (21. Qb5 Bb7 ) 21... Bg4! 22. f3? exf3 23. gxf3 Bxf3! 24. Qxf3 Qxb5-+ 25. Rxf6 Qd3 26. Kf2 gxf6 27. Rg1 Kf8 28. Bf4 Rad8 29. Rg4 Re6 30. h4 Qc2+ 31. Kg3 f5 32. Rg5 Qe4 33. h5 Rd2 34. Qf1 Rf6 35. Kh3 Qd5 36. Rg1 Rc6 37. b4 Rcc2 38. Kh4 Qe4 39. Kh3 Ke7 40. Kg3 Rh2

0-1 Eriksson,O-Arfwedson,G/Corr. Sweden 1979 (40)

 

12... Nd4 13. Qb1

13. exd4? exd4+ 14. Ne2 Ng4! xf2 d3 15. Bh4 dxc4

 

13... Bf5 14. Bd3[] e4 15. Bc2?!

All sources agree that the "Steinitzian retreat" (Timman) by 15. Bf1! was "winning" after 15... Ng4 (15... Bxa3!? 16. Bxf6 gxf6 17. cxd5! Bb4 18. exd4 e3 19. Qxf5 Bxc3 20. bxc3 exd2+ 21. Kxd2 +-) 16. cxd5! (16. Nxd5? Ne5!? 17. exd4? e3! 18. Qxf5 Nf3+!! 19. Qxf3 exd2#) 16... b5? (16... Ne5!? 17. exd4 (17. Bc4 Rac8) 17... Nf3+ (17... Bxd4!?) 18. gxf3 exf3+ 19. Nde4 (19. Be3 Bxb1 20. dxc5 Bc2 must offer some practical chances.) 19... Bxe4 (19... Rxe4+!? 20. Qxe4 Bxe4 21. dxc5 ) 20. Qc1 Bc2+ 21. Be3 Bxd1 22. dxc5 Bb3 offers some practical chances for Black.) 17. exd4 e3? 18. Nb3+- 1-0 Cunningham,P-Cooper,J/Wales 1981 (18)

 

15... Nxc2+ 16. Qxc2 Qa6?

Necessary was 16... dxc4! Kholmov 17. Bxf6 gxf6 18. Nxc4

(18. O-O!? Rac8 19. Ndxe4 Qb6 unclear )

(18. b4 cxb3 19. Nxb3 Qxa3 20. Ra1 Qb4 21. Ra4 Qb6 22. Nd5 Qc6!=)

 

18... Qa6 19. Qe2

(19. Nd5?! Rac8 20. Qc3 Be7 )

(Interesting is 19. Qa4!? Qxa4 20. Nxa4 Be7! 21. Nd6! Bg4!? 22. Nxe8 Bxd1 23. Nxf6+ Bxf6 24. Kxd1 )

 

19... Rac8?

(19... Red8! 20. Nd2 Qe6 keeps the two Bishops and the Queens on the board, providing Black more than sufficient play for his kingside weakness.)

 

20. Nd6! Qxe2+ 21. Kxe2 Bg4+ 22. Ke1 Red8

(or 22... Bxd1 23. Nxe8 )

 

23. Nxc8 Bxd1 24. Nxd1 Rxc8 25. Kd2 f5 26. Nc3 Bd6 27. g3

the locked pawns favor the Knight and Black's doubled f-pawns are a long-term problem

 

27... Kf8 28. Rc1 Be5 29. Rc2 Kg7 30. Nb1 Rd8+ 31. Ke2 Kf6 32. Nd2 Ke6 33. f3 exf3+ 34. Nxf3 Bf6 35. Ne1 Rd6 36. Nd3 Rb6 37. b4 Be7 38. Nf4+ Kd7 39. Nd5 Ra6 40. Rc7+ Kd6 41. Rxe7 Kxd5 42. Rxf7 b5?! (42... Rxa3!) 43. Rxf5+ Kc4 44. Rc5+ Kb3 45. Rxb5 Rxa3 46. Kf3 Ra2 47. h4 Rh2 48. Rb7 a6 49. b5 axb5 50. Rxb5+ Kc4 51. Rh5

1-0 Tatai-Olp/Lucca tt 1978 (51)

 

17. Bxf6

17. cxd5 Nd7 and White has difficulty getting his king to safety.

 

17... Qxf6 18. Nb3

18. Nxd5 Qg5 19. O-O (19. g3!?) 19... Bd6! 20. Kh1 Re6->

 

18... Bd6

18... Bf8!? 19. Rxd5 Qg6

 

19. Rxd5 Re5?

Necessary was 19... Be5 20. Nd4 Bxd4 21. Rxd4 Qg5 22. g3 (or 22. O-O!? Bh3!? 23. f4 exf3 24. Rxf3 unclear ) (or 22. Kf1 Rad8 unclear ) 22... Rad8 23. Ne2 Rxd4 24. Nxd4 Bh3 25. Qa4 Rc8 and the game is still up for grabs. From here on out, Black is probably lost.

 

20. Nd4 Rc8 21. Rxe5

Better 21. f4! exf3? 22. Nxf5 fxg2 23. Rg1+-

 

21... Qxe5 22. Nxf5

Better perhaps 22. f4! Qf6 23. Nxe4 Bxe4 24. Qxe4 Qe7 25. Qxe7 Bxe7 26. Kd2 Rxc4 27. Kd3 Rc8 28. e4 h5 29. b4 g6 30. e5 Kh7 31. Rd1 b6 32. Rd2 a5 33. Rc2 Rxc2 34. Nxc2 axb4 35. Nxb4 Bc5 36. Kc4 Kg7 37. a4 Bg1 38. h4 Bf2 39. Kb5 Bxh4 40. Kxb6 Bf2+ 41. Kc6 h4 42. a5 g5 43. fxg5 1-0 Massimini Gerbino,M-Van Bommel,T/IECG email 2002 (43)

 

22... Qxf5 23. O-O

23. Nxe4 b5 24. O-O Rxc4 25. Qd2 Bc7 26. Ng3 Qe6 27. Qd3 g6 with compensation.

 

The remainder of the game demonstrates excellent technique by Korchnoi against the most challenging defense possible.

 

23... Rxc4 24. Rd1 Qe5 25. g3 a6 26. Qb3 b5 27. a4 Rb4 28. Qd5 Qxd5 29. Rxd5 Bf8 30. axb5 a5 31. Rd8 Rxb2 32. Ra8 f5 33. Rxa5 Bb4 34. Ra8+ Kf7 35. Na4 Rb1+ 36. Kg2 Bd6 37. Ra7+ Kf6 38. b6 Bb8 39. Ra8 Be5 40. Nc5 Bd6 41. b7 Ke7 42. Rg8 Be5 43. f4 exf3+ 44. Kxf3 Kf7 45. Rc8 Ke7 46. h3 h5? 47. Rg8+- Kf7 48. Rd8 g5 49. g4 hxg4+ 50. hxg4 Ke7 51. Rg8 fxg4+ 52. Kxg4 Kf7 53. Rc8 Bd6 54. e4 Rg1+ 55. Kf5 g4 56. e5 Rf1+ 57. Ke4 Re1+ 58. Kd5 Rd1+ 59. Nd3 Rxd3+ 60. Kc4 1-0 [Michael Goeller]

Game in PGN