KindredSpirit’s Kaleidoscope: 1964 Chess Olympiad, USSR vs. USA cont’d (the end)

One of the fundamentals of sound chess play is the subject of CASTLING.  There are so many examples of  HOW  NOT  TO  PLAY  CHESS  where the very basic law given by authors of many articles in books, magazines, and lectures emphasize its importance: to connect Rooks, King safety by getting the King to flee the central files from the range of enemy units especially in the opening stage.  The word itself describes its purpose being that of King safety behind castle walls.  Even so, as the following battle illustrates, even those who attained the coveted Grandmaster title have been guilty of playing too loose in hopes of strategic or tactical inroads aimed at the enemy position.  Look at castling as doing nothing to an enemy position but simply strengthening one’s home base.

White:  GM Arthur B. Bisguier     vs.   Black:   GM  L. Stein      Opening:  Sicilian Defense

1. P-QB4   P-KN3  /  2.  P-K4   P-QB4  /  3.  N-KB3   B-N2  /  4.  P-Q4   P x P /   5. N x P  N-QB3  /  6. B-K3   N-B3  /  7.  N-QB3   N-KN5 /  8. Q x N  N x N 9. Q-Q1  P-K4 /  10. N-N5  O-O/

Black secures the Monarch to the safety of the King’s corner where it is most easily defended.  It has become a Sicilian by transposition where White now sets up the Marozy Bind where GM Stein skillful handling of the opening has avoided playing P-Q3.  This became known as the Accelerated Dragon Variation so that on the usual 11. B-K2, Black can strike the center by the sharp 11. …P-Q4!

This opening idea came about in a game from the 1956 Alekhine Memorial Tournament between Smyslov and Botvinnik.  Most commentators since have given an edge to White from that played….10. B-Q3  P-Q3   11. O-O   O-O  12. R-B1  B-K3  13. P-QN3   P-QR3  14. B-N1  R-N1!, a plan I adopted myself winning a nice game 0-1.  Obviously, Stein held a different view on the pro and con of it since he was prepared to play the sharp Dragon. Taking the Knight now would be a mistake.  Do you see why? If you conclude that 11. B x N   P x B  12. N x QP  is worth giving Black a very active position via …Q-N3, you are in the process of learning how to play chess!  The play remains complex and unclear.

11. Q-Q2  Q-R5  /  12. B-Q3   P-Q4  /  13. B-N5   Q-N3  /  14.  P-B3   Q-Q2   /  15. N x N   P x BP!

Black grabs this pawn that shows you a good example for the term ZWISCHENZUG.

16. B x P  P x N

So far Bisguier has played smartly but goes astray of a good plan.  The position is at the crucial moment where White needs to play  B-Q3 to bolster the Kingside pawns while restraining the passed Q-pawn, and to O-O in hopes of a secure King defense. White shows poor judgment.

17. B-Q5?  Q-N4 / 18.  P-QR4?!

In two moves White has ruined his position.  It reminds me of the gathering storm clouds of a raging storm front.

18.  … Q-R3

Black’s key to control is to blunt White  ever castling.

19.  Q-N4

White would like to  remedy his error in judgment with B-QB4  but Black now stops this.

19. … B-K3  20.  B x B   P x B  /  21. R-QB1  P-R3  / 22. B-Q2   KR-B1  23. K-B2  Q-Q6!

With a threat to win a piece by 24…B-B1  25. Q-R5  P-N3, Stein has outplayed his adversary and  seems already to have a triumph at hand.  However, as many chess games go, it sometimes requires a long haul to achieve the final coup de grace.

24.  R x R ch  R x R  /  25.  R-QB1   R x R   /  26. B x R   Q-B7ch /  27. Q-Q2   Q x RP  /  28. Q-Q3   P-KR4  /  29. PQN3  Q-B3 /  30. B-Q2  P-K4 / 31. P-KN4   P-QN4  / 32. P x P  P x P  / 33. K-K2   P-R3 /   34. P-B4  P x P /  35. B x P  Q-K3 /  36. P-R3  P-R4 /  37. P-K5  B x P  /  38. Q-K4  P-Q6ch  39. K-B2  Q-N3ch  /  40. K-B3   B x B  /  41.  Q-K8ch  K-N2  /  42.  Q-K7ch  K-R3  / 43. Q-B8ch  K-N3   /  44. Q-K8ch  K-N4  /  45. P-R4ch  K x P / 46. Q-K7ch  K-R6  / 47. Q-Q7ch  K-R7  White Resigns. (0-1).

For the USSR, chess was politics and had become a way to educate the masses of Peoples, many who could talk but lacked skills for writing and keeping busy.  One such system was to provide chess instruction and this was a major way for the communist system to shine as a growing challenge  in agriculture, science, math, literature and music among the arts to boost Soviet society as superior to those in the West.

Up until the entry by the Soviets into the Chess Olympiads, little was known of the caliber of players, let alone how many really existed both in strength and numbers.  The visitors like Lasker, Alekhine, Capablanca, Marshall, Reti and others from outside the Soviet Union spoke well of the attention given chess by the Soviet Sport officials. The United States had been supreme leaders in World team events and a handful of Americans had toured Europe being invited to play in tournaments, rare as they were in those days.  The quality of play was spoken as high level and some in America sought more recognition and to develop both our membership base (USCF) which really just began in the early 1950s and pockets of school clubs and many city chess clubs that might meet once a week or once a month.  The emergence of Bobby Fischer’s talent and dedication to a dream of bringing home to America the World Chess Championship was a shot in the arm and awakening with some political support.

Chess literature was huge in the Soviet Union with great talents fine tuning ways to teach children from an early age.  It was a national drive to prove their system equal or superior to other nations grouped as the West.  With the outbreak of World War II, there is little evidence that the top players had to curtail their chess activities and many had contributed toward finally pushing the Nazis back to Germany.  Many talented players had lost their lives during the war years while others used their skills building its war machine.  Everyone worked to win and get revenge.  As they discovered from experience the values of teaching chess to children, the Soviets proved to be years ahead of the West in all sport and arts training procedures.

In 1964  Bobby Fischer was still honing his skills as were many new talents who emerged from the many city clubs across America.  It was obvious that our pride was shattered by this total wipeout.  Our great talent had aged or gone on to other life adventures.  Our organization skills had to be developed, tournaments established with a calendar  to avoid local or area scheduling conflicts.  This push to build a strong American presence in the world arena though continued on an amateur approach until many former players who emigrated from the USSR, some settling in America, had made personal contributions toward our own development as a chess power.

In Women chess the efforts of Susan Polgar to establish a chess school for girls has proved a big lift in developing a part of social feminine interest for chess and the number talented women players continues to increase with their support for the game.


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