KindredSpirit’s Kaleidoscope: USSR vs USA 1964 Chess Olympiad

THE  1964 PRELIMINARY ROUND FOR THESE TWO TEAMS SAW THE SOVIET UNION SCORING 23.5 OUT OF 24-GAMES WHERE SPAIN MANAGED TO TIE ONE GAME IN THE GROUP 1 DIVISION;  THE UNITED STATES IN GROUP 4 FINISHED FIRST WITH 21 POINTS.  THE TWO MET IN BATTLE, BOTH MANAGING TO FIELD THEIR TOP TEAM MATCH PLAYERS FOR THE FINALS.

White:  Petrosyan       vs.   Black:  Reshevsky   Opening:  King’s Indian Defense

1.  P-Q4   N-KB3 /  2.  P-QB4  P-KN3 /   3. N-QB3  B-N2 /  4. P-K4  P-Q3  /  5.  P-B3  O-O  /  6. B-K3  P-B3  /  7. B-Q3  P-K4  /  8. P-Q5  PxP /

9.  BPxP  N-R3 / 10. KN-K2  B-Q2 /  11. O-O

Petrosyan has steered the game into a quiet variation rejecting 7. Q-Q2 and 8. O-O-O which is more dynamic in nature.

11. …  N-QB4 /  12. B-QB2

With this move he sidesteps a possible plan of 12. BxN  PxB.  While pawns are doubled and White has a passed pawn at Q5,  both players likely viewed the pro and con to be in Black’s favor due to White having traded his good Bishop and is left with the bad Bishop.  Besides, the Knight can retreat to K1 aiming for Q3 which is the ideal square for the defending Knight.  Black can then concentrate on the Q-side for active play.

12. … P-QR4/  13. P-QR3  Q-N3?

I think this move has to be questioned  and I would prefer here, 13…P-QN4 >(N-R3) with the Q-side pawn activity that builds on square count.  The “Tiger” cannot be treated to such indifference because he will surely sink his claws into poor judgment planning.  This shows the somewhat amateur nature of the whole American team who cannot be faulted due to not meeting the strongest players on a fairly regular basis.

14. K-R1  KR-B1 /  15. R-N1  Q-R3 / 16. P-QR4  Q-N3 / 17. N-B1  Q-Q1 / 18. B-Q3  N-K1

So the Queen has toured the Q-side with little effect other than having the KR transferred to the Q-side.  The loss of tempi gives White considerably more pull than before the wasted Queen sortie by Black where the Knight maneuver was a solidly laid planned action moving into Q3.  Here, Black had the option of grabbing the Bishop and improving the eventual scope of his K-Bishop.  Now, the World Champion makes use of my theory by…..

19. B-QN5  BxB /  20. NxB

Here the importance of planning strategy comes into sharp focus.  Black has lost use of his valuable QB in the exchange and likely Reshevsky realizes he is being outplayed by the World Champion. This can prove disheartening not only to the player but also the other team members.

20. … N-B2/  21. N-R3  N/2-R3  / 22. N-Q3  B-B3  /  23. NxN  NxN

Black is left with the “bad bishop” so recapturing with the Pawn would be a significant error. He cannot block the passed QP easily by N-Q3 anytime soon.  Because he failed to get in P-QN4 as I noted earlier, his Q-side majority is thus crippled by this lagging behind of the QNP.

24. N-N5  R-R3 / 25. R-R1  B-N4 / 26. B-N1!

White avoids exchanging Black’s bad Bishop and somewhat freeing up the troubles of the defense.

26. … Q-Q2 / 27. R-R3

White’s Rook now takes up the 3rd rank where it can swing to the other side or keep pressure on the Q-side.

27. … R/3-R1 / 28. R-QB3  P-N3  29. Q-B2  R-B1  30. R-N1  P-B4  31.  PxP   RxP /  32. R-B4  R/4-B1 / 33. N-B3  QR-B1  /  34. R-K1  Q-QN2 / 35. P-R3  Q-Q2 /  36. N-K4  B-K2 / 37. R-QB1  R-R1  / 38. K-R2  Q-N2  /  39. Q-Q1  Q-Q2 / 40. B-K3  R-R2 / 41. B-R6  R-K1 / 42. R/1-B3  R-N1  / 43. Q-B2  R-K1 / 44. B-K3  K-N2  / 45. P-QN4!

This sharp strike with square count thoughts to me is what White played patiently to achieve. Big things do not always come in small packages.  His pieces take on considerable power and pressure puts stress on the Black defense.

45. … PxP /  46. RxP   B-Q1 /  47. R/3-B4  P-R4   ADJOURNMENT

48. R-N5  R-B1  /  49. B-B1  R-R3 /  50. Q-Q2  R-N1  /  51. P-B4!

This is a typical German “Koenigsangriff.”–the start of a winning attack.

51. … NxN  / 52. RxN   B-B3 /  53. PxP   BxP ch  /

Simply delightful. Black’s freed Bishop now overtakes square count w/9-b/11.

54.  Rx B!!

The bad Bishop no longer could be bad and White might  say, “He go away.”

54. …  PxR  /  55. P-Q6

“The lust of a passed Pawn to expand.” — Aron Nimzowitsch in My System.

55…. R-R4  / 56.  RxNP   RxP /  57. Q-Q5  Centralization of the Queen is another mobile axiom power to the Queen!

57. … R-R2  /  58. QxPch   K-R2  /  59. Q-KN5  R-KB1  /  60. Q-R6ch  K-N1 / 61. QxPch   Q-KN2  /62. QxP  Q-Q5  /  63. Q-N6ch  R-KN2  / 64. Q-K6ch  K-R2 /  65. Q-R6ch  K-N1 /  66. Q-K6ch  K-R2 /  67. B-K3  Q-KR5 /  68. Q-K5  R-K1 /  69. Q-B5ch  K-N1 /  70. B-B2  Q-QB5  / 71. R-N2  Q-B3 / 72.B-B5  R-KB2  / 73. Q-N4ch  R-KN2  74. Q-B4ch  Resigns.

At the time this event took place, players were using English Descriptive Notation.  It is good to become familiar with other forms of notation.  The algebraic notation came into being after years of debate, especially among editors and problem designers.  It saved on time, expense for hard type,  and space.  It was a big deal for Americans who liked and preferred the capital letters.  Just about everyone used English Descriptive or descriptive in their own national language.  Several copies of books sent to me from my Russian opponents while editor were in Russian script.

Note the spelling of Petrosyan.  Various listings spell it Petrosian.  The same with the name Tal which early writings show his name as Tahl.

 

 

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