Sunday, 27 May 2007

Giving it all away

One thing I try and do with this blog is to post something new each day. So far I've been able to do that, and hopefully I will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. Of course to do this I need a collection of interesting things to talk about. Sometimes current events provide me with enough information (Doeberl Cup, SIO, Zonal etc) but sometimes I have to dip into my archives to find the post of the day.
While looking through a back issue of Australian Chess Forum (a magazine I used to edit/publish, email me for prices on back issues!) I came across an article I wrote for the Xmas 1999 issue. The article was titled The Season of Giving and contained two remarkable games. Here I present the second of the two games (keeping the first up my sleeve for another day).
The games is between Grigory Serper and Ioannis Nikolaidis from 1993. The remarkable thing about this game is that Serper sacrifices every piece he has, either by allowing it to be captured for nothing or by exchanging it for a piece of lesser value. (Notes for the game are from the original article)

Serper,G - Nikolaidis,I [E70]
St Petersburg, 1993

1.c4 g6 2.e4 Bg7 3.d4 d6 4.Nc3 Nf6 5.Nge2 Nbd7 6.Ng3 c6 7.Be2 a6 8.Be3 h5 9.f3 b5 10.c5 dxc5 11.dxc5 Qc7 12.0-0 h4 13.Nh1 Nh5 14.Qd2 e5 15.Nf2 Nf8 16.a4 b4 17.Nd5! The first in a stunning sequence of sacrifices. 17...cxd5 18.exd5 f5 19.d6 Qc6 [better is 19...Qa5 20.Nd3 f4 21.Bf2 h3] 20.Bb5! axb5 21.axb5 Qxb5 [21...Qb7 22.c6 Qb8 23.Rxa8 Qxa8 leaves the position balanced between the avalanche of Whites pawns and the extra black pieces] 22.Rxa8 Qc6 23.Rfa1 f4 24.R1a7 [Also good is 24.Nd3 fxe3 25.Qxe3 Kf7 26.R1a7+ Kg8 27.Nxb4 Qb5 28.Rxc8 Qxb4 29.d7+-] 24...Nd7 only move 25.Rxc8+! Qxc8 26.Qd5! fxe3 27.Qe6+ Kf8 28.Rxd7 exf2+ 29.Kf1 [29.Kxf2?? throws it all away 29...Qxc5+ 30.Kf1 Qc1+ 31.Kf2 Qxb2+ 32.Kf1 Qc1+ 33.Kf2 Qd2+ 34.Kf1 Ng3+ 35.hxg3 Qd1+ 36.Kf2 hxg3+ 37.Ke3 (37.Kxg3 Qe1+ 38.Kg4 Qh4#) 37...Bh6+ 38.f4 Bxf4+ 39.Ke4 Qd4+ 40.Kf3 Qe3+ 41.Kg4 Qe2#] 29...Qe8 [Attempting to simplify with 29...Qa6+ 30.Kxf2 Qe2+ 31.Kxe2 Nf4+ 32.Kf1 Nxe6 33.c6 fails due to Whites pawns] 30.Rf7+ Qxf7 31.Qc8+! Qe8 32.d7 Kf7 33.dxe8Q+ Rxe8 34.Qb7+ Re7 35.c6 e4 36.c7 e3 37.Qd5+ [Obviously not 37.c8Q e2+ 38.Kxf2 e1Q#] 37...Kf6 38.Qd6+ Kf7 39.Qxe7+ Kxe7 White has sacrificed all his pieces! 40.c8Q In return White gets a new Queen. 40...Bh6 41.Qc5+ Ke8 42.Qb5+ Kd8 43.Qb6+ Ke7 44.Qxg6 Black only has tricks to play for. 44...e2+ 45.Kxf2 Be3+ 46.Ke1 1-0

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