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Saturday, August 6, 2011

Mikhail Tal and his Sacrifices Part 2.

Pin It Tal's success as a sacrificer resulted from both his personality and his mental faculties. he loved a fight. He had great intuition, a rich imagination and a love of beauty. He was able to calculate at great speed and visualize future positions with remarkable clarity. He had an uncanny judgement of the effects of strange material imbalances. he had a great sense of humour, one effect of which was to help him to see paradoxical ideas.
A short section on the greatest sacrificer of all time can scarcely do full justice to all o fhis characteristics, but we can hope to see some of them in action and allow ourselves to be inspired by them.

Tal sacrificed with many possible ends in mind. The favourite combination of his merely resulted in a favourable endgame.

13 c5 dxc5 14 dxe5 Qxe5 Qa4 + c6 16 0-0 Ng6 17 Nc4 Qe6 18 e5! b5

Black has been allowed to attack a bishop, knight and queen simultaneously...

19 exf6!!

and Tal declines to save his queen.

The calm 9 9...0-0! is the critical test of Tal's idea.

20 fxg7!

He even allows Black to save his own queen if he wishes, but 20...Qd5 21 Bxg6 Rg8 22 Rfe1+ Kd7 23 Re7 Kc8 24 Bf5+! Qxf5 25 Nd6+ wins for white.

And we shall see later in the book, the pawn's dash from the fourth to the seventh rank in consecutive moves - with heavy material sacrifices on the way was to become a Tal trademark.

20 ...Rg8 21 Bf5!!

With his h4 Bishop still en prise, Tal puts both of his other minor pieces at his opponent's disposal.


In fact, it is only the h4-bshop that can be captured, as 21 ...Qxf5 is met by 22 Nd6+ regaining all but a pawn and keeping White on the attack. White on the attack, While 21....21 ...Qxc4 loses beautifully in its won variation. 22 Rfe1+ Qe6 23 Rxe6 fxe6 24Bxg6+ Kd7 25 Rd1+ Kc7 26 Bg3+ Kb6 27 Rb1+ Ka6 28 Bd3+ Ka5 29 Bc7#

22 Bxe6 Ba6 23 Nd6+ Ke7 chess game.

Tal has still two pieces en prise, but he knows what he is doing.

24 Bc4! Rxg7 25 g3 Kxd6 26 Bxa6

The has cleared. What has Tal achieved with his grandiose combination? A better ending, and not necessarily a winning one, either. Black is still a pawn ahead, but White has the better minor piece and far better pawns.


A typical problem for the defender, who over-relaxes once the barrage is over. 26 ...Rb8, and if 27 Rab1 then 27...Rb6!, would give in good chances of saving the game. Now tal takes control of the b-file and eventually wins the ending.

It is typical of the man that he was willing to undertake such mundane duties after firing the big guns, and also typical that he would play such endgames so much better than his shell shocked opponents.

27 Rab1 f6 28 Rfd1+ Ke7 29 Re1 + Kd6 30 Kf2 c4 31 g4 Ne7 32 Rb7 Rag8 33 Bxc4 Nd5 34 Bxd5 cxd5 35 Rb4 Rc8 38 Rxa8 Rxc3 37 Ra6+ Kc5 38 Rxf6 h5 39 h3 hxg4 40 hxg4 Rh7 41 g5 Rh5 Rc2+ 43 Kg3 Kc4 44Ree5 d4 45 g6 Rh1 46 Rc5+ Kd3 47 Rxc2 Kxc2 48 Kf4 Rg1 49 Rg5 1-0

Mikhail Tal and His sacrifices Part 1

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