Kindred’s Special: Instructive Chess–A Rare Treat By Judit Polgar

Judit writes on Aix-les-Bains that it was 10-years since playing in the European Championship where she placed 3rd.  In a playoff, things went against her so she failed to gain a medal.  She had not furthermore played in any classical tournaments since the Olympiad so such a rest no doubt gave her a ‘rush’ in entering this open 400-player tournament. In recent years her official rating dropped off where getting an invitation to major tournaments has become tougher with the wide range of world talent on the stage these days. That is the facts of life of a professional chessplayer and something one must learn to accept.  In this event, Judit managed to gain 3rd prize and a bronze medal.

I choose the following game for its instructive value and as a somewhat rare treat of Judit’s aggressive, lively and enertaining style for which she is known.  Numerous articles of my writings on chess instruction can be viewed, copied and studied. Here, this game presents a number of themes I have penned in the past.

White: Levan Pantsulaia   vs.  Black:  Judit Polgar     Opening:   English Opening

1. c4  e6  2. Nf3  Nf6  3. g3  d5  4. Qc2  In this particular line, White often meets the Knight chase with Nc2 so the idea of the Queen’s  early development seems suspect.  4. Bg2 looks logical.

4. … c5  5. d4  cxd4  6. Nxd4  e5  This position occurred in the game Takacs and Alekhine at Kecskemet in 1927 which goes to prove that chess variations can feature decades of history!   Here, Takacs chose 7. Nf3 after which Alekhine in his style went for 7…Nc6  8. cxd5  Nxd5  9. a3  Be6  10. Bd2  Be7  11. Nc3  O-O and Alekhine went on to win.  Judit says she had planned to play 7… d4.

7. Nb3  Nc6  8. Bg2  Nb4  9. Qd1  dxc4  10. N/3d2 Bf5 11. Na3 ?! White misses the opportunity to try and complicate things and attain good play by 11. O-O, never mind losing the Exchange whose effort to achieve would give White good fighting play.  Judit’s reaction to castles would be either 11….Qc7 or 11… Rb8 with a fine game for Black.

11. … b5!  12. Bxa8 Again development by 12. O-O is better maybe but Black then has a pawn and solid game by …Rb8 and the initiative. The White squares are now weak and Black discovers a way to prove it!

12. … Qxa8  13. Nf3  Nd3+!!  Lets face it. We don’t always see such sparkling play–and from a Lady no less!  12. …Qc6! Judit also thought about which gives her a great position but also 12. … a6 as pointed out by Kasparov is potent. The result of not castling by White keeps the King exposed in the center and subject to harrassment by Black. This was the thought behind Judit’s tactical play.

14. exd3  Bxd3  15. Nxb5  Bb4+ 16. Nc3  O-O  17. Rg1  Ne4  18. Bd2  Rd8  Black elects to bring into play her remaining Rook and attack force.

19. Rc1  Nxc3  20. bxc3  Ba3 21. Be3  Bxc1  22. Bxc1  Rb8  Eying eventually the b1 square. Note the additional sq/ct the black forces amassed with this one move.

23. Nd2  Qd5 Centralization of the Queen ala Nimsowitsch in Chess Praxis!

24. Qa4  a5  25. Qd1  h6  26. Qf3  Rb1!  This shot across the bow is possible because after 27. Qxd5 Rxc1 mate!

27. Kd1  e4  28. Qf4  Ra1  29. Qb8+  Kh7  30. g4  Qd7  31. Qe5  e3  32. fxe3  Qa4+ 33. Ke1  Rxc1+  34. Kf2 Rxg1 and White Resigns (01).

There are many books written through the decades of chess strategies and it always amazes me the number of times the lack of castling early enough finds the King caught in the center where it is most vulnerable to attack.

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3 Responses to “Kindred’s Special: Instructive Chess–A Rare Treat By Judit Polgar”

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