Friday 9 January 2009

Anticipating Anand

The story behind Anand's 6 move loss to Alonso Zapata in 1988 is reasonably well known. (The one where Anand repeated an idea from Miles v Christensen 1987 that he saw in an Informater, not realising that Christensen's 5 move was a blunder, or knowing that as Miles and Christensen had agreed to a draw prior to the game, Miles couldn't play the refutation).

Zapata,A (2480) - Anand,V (2555) [C42]
Biel-B Biel (9), 1988

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.Nc3 Bf5?? 6.Qe2 1-0

What is less well known is that Joe Rush from Papua New Guinea had played 5. ... Bf5 5 years earlier, during the 1982 Luzern Olympiad. Unfortunately for him his opponent found the right move, although Rush decided to fight on for another dozen moves.

Saleh,M - Rush,J [C42]
Luzern ol (Men) Luzern (12), 1982

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.Nc3 Bf5 6.Qe2 d5 7.d3 Be7 8.dxe4 dxe4 9.Nxe4 0-0 10.Ng3 Bg6 11.Be3 Qd5 12.Qd2 Qe6 13.Bd3 f5 14.0-0 Nc6 15.Rfe1 Qf6 16.Bg5 Qxb2 17.Bxe7 Nxe7 18.Rab1 Qxa2 19.Qb4 1-0

BTW If anyone who reads this is in contact with Joe Rush, could you please put him in touch with me.

(Thanks for this titbit goes to the Streatham & Brixton Chess Club Blog, where you can read the whole story here)


Anonymous said...

Anand always denied that he was following the Miles game - he said that the blunder was his own stupidity.

Stephen E. Jones said...

I played Joe Rush in Perth in the 1960s and I remember him as a strong tactician, who won the WA State Chess Championship in 1962 & 63, so I find it surprising he fell into this Petroff trap.

But then Anand is not exactly a poor tactician, yet he also, amongst others, also fell into it!

White's Qe2 is an early threat in the Petroff and black must be ready to answer it with Qe7, which Rush and Anand could have done here, except for white's Nd5.

Shaun, if you still want to get in contact with Joe Rush, he has a website: Joe's Information which has an email address. But I haven't tried it myself.

Stephen E. Jones