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Think Like a Grandmaster by Alexander Kotov - Diagram 1 (Fritz Analysis)

How did you get on?

I guess the first thing to deal with was the issue that had bothered me all those years ago. In the game line after 26.Bc3 and after 28...h4 I think I was justified in being puzzled by White's resignation. Although I did not see it back then or more recently you can see that the 29.Rg4 line in the game viewer below is not so clear. What I am more pleased about is that I did find the better 28...Bxe5 all by my lonesome and saw it from the original position up to 31...Rd8! Another power of the chess machine these days is that one can trace games in ChessBase just by entering the position and searching the database. Out it popped and bizarrely Black did play 28...Bxe5 in real life and....drew! He missed 31...Rd8. Why Kotov gave 28...h4 instead I will never know!

Now lets get to the 26.Ng4 variation. Well it turns out that it fails to 26...Qxd4 27.Nxh6+ Kf8! Its quite odd that Kotov finds this move after 26...Qh4 27.Nxh6+ Kf8 but not in his other main line.

So none of the candidate sacrificial moves work! However, Fritz unfurls a fourth sacrificial candidate: 26.Nxf7! and that really does the business!

So what is the real point of the story?

Even a world class grandmaster like Alexander Kotov could not find all of the tactical niceties in the early 1970's that a £40 computer program can find in a few minutes today....So dont beat yourself up when you find that the machine finds tactical holes in your games! Being human is ok!

Paul Shepherd 21 January 2013

Game viewer by ChessTempo