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LCB, Issue #041 --, Blitz with Pins and Discovered Checks
October 01, 2018

Blitz with Pins and Discovered Checks

Lapoc Chess Board, Issue #041 -- GOTM #10

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Alekhine and Verlinsky face off in Odessa. The serve up this classic exactly a century ago. White gambits material very early on, indicating he is ready for a fight.

Black does not shirk from the challenge and a memorable contest soon gets underway. One of the greatest tactical minds comes up against a highly respected master of that era.

Quick development leads to pressure against the famously weak f7 square. Parries against this attack allow space and activity advantages for the aggressor and he can transfer his attentions to d6. The enemy strikes back with counterplay as the game is decided by an inspired, resoureful bolt from the blue.

Blitz with Pins and Discovered Attacks

Alekhine, Alexander - Verlinsky, Boris [C43]

GotM #10 - Odessa, 1918
[Connaughton, Ken]

1.e4 e5 2.d4 exd4 3.c3

Gambits a pawn for a lead in development.




(4.Bc4 is an invitation to the Danish Gambit which could continue with 4...cxb2 5.Bxb2 giving White a powerful attack for the two pawns.)

4...Nc6 5.Bc4 d6 6.Nf3 Nf6 7.Qb3

Threatening f7 and tying down Black's light square Bishop to the defense of b7.

7...Qd7 8.Ng5

Building up on the weak point.

8...Ne5 9.Bb5 c6 10.f4

Allowing the exchange in a way that opens up lines of attack.

10...cxb5 11.fxe5 dxe5 12.Be3 Bd6 13.Nxb5

The d6- Bishop becomes the new focus of attack. The previous assault on f7 has resulted in a space advantage and much superior pieces for White. The lead in development also contributes to a strong initiative for the first player.


Game position after 13...0-0

Black decides to get his King safe and then hopes to untangle and activate his passive pieces.


White's pressure is relentless. The pin on the Queen will force the Knight into a bad square.Now connecting the Rooks will seem a long way away.

14...Ne8 15.0-0 Qe7

Game position after 15...Qe7

Black gets out of the pin.


Preparing a new pin for the long suffering Black Queen.

16...Nxd6 17.Qa3

And the new pin is set. Black can't find a way to avoid losing material.


loses just a pawn for now but allows the collapse of Black's position as the the remaining moves show. White gives a master class in how to convert tactical advantages into the full point.

(17...b6 was perhaps Black's least worst option. That giving up the Knight is so unpalatable, probably explains the text move. Play could continue with 18.Rxd6 f6 19.Nf3 Bb7 20.Nd2 Rad8 21.Rd3 Qxa3 22.Rxa3; 17...Nf5 was another way: 18.exf5 Qxa3 19.bxa3 b6)

18.Nxf7 Bg4 19.Rxd6

And one way or another Black loses the piece.

19...Re8 20.Bg5

White' pieces are now working in glorious harmony as the attack is ratcheted up.

20...Qc7 21.Qb3

Game position after 21.Qb3

Now a deadly discovered attack is threatened. As Black's problems continue to grow he tries to solve them with a counter-attack.

21...Be2 22.Nxe5+ Kh8 23.Rc1

The threatened fork defends the d6-Rook.


Again Black chooses a clever looking threat to hold his position together. Now the Queen is the one actually threatening the c1-Rook which cannot leave the home rank. Suddenly White has to solve several problems, a hanging d6-Rook, a loose Knight on e5 and of course the aforementioned problems on the home rank. Only one move fits the bill covering everything but how easy is it to see it over the board in a top level tournament?


Game position after 24.Qd1!!

Shores up the home rank renewing the threat on the Black Queen, defends d6, removing any need to expose e5. White can keep his material advantage and Black's threats come to nothing.

(24.Rxc7 Rf1#; 24.Ng6+ also wins: 24...hxg6 25.Qh3+ Kg8 26.Qe6+ Qf7 27.Qxf7+ Rxf7 but it is not as clear cut.)


He plays on for a couple of more moves but the writing is on the wall.

25.Qxe2 Qxe5 26.Rd5

Game position after 26.Rd5

Black resigns.


Alekhine - Verlinsky (Odessa, 1918)

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