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LCB, Issue #063 --, Get the KO with the Intermezzo
September 01, 2020

Get the KO with the Intermezzo

Lapoc Chess Board, Issue #063 -- GOTM #33

learn and play online chess
The Intermezzo is a truly deadly weapon in chess. Many games feature forced sequences of sometimes a few and sometimes many moves where both players have only one playable move.

If during such a sequence, one or the other can land a tempo winning tactical shot, it can be enough to win the game. Chess history is decorated with many such examples and the games of the masters have some of the most stunning.

Their remarkable insight into chess positions often uncovers opportunities that remain elusive to the masses below.

A particularly vivid example can be seen in the game between Bobby Fischer and Samuel Schweber in Buenos Aires in 1970.

KO with the Intermezzo

Fischer, Bobby - Schweber, Samuel [C19]

GotM #33 - Buenos Aires, 1970
[Connaughton, Ken]


Fischer rarely strayed from 1.e4 (best by test)


French Defense

2.d4 d5 3.Nc3

Paulsen Variation


Winawer Variation


Advance Variation

4...c5 5.a3 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Qc7 7.Nf3 Nc6 8.Be2 Bd7 9.0-0 Nge7

Game position after 9...Nge7

Typical set-up for this opening.


White wants to activate his dark square Bishop to good effect.


Black likes c4, a good place for his Knight.

11.Re1 cxd4 12.cxd4 Nc4

Achieving the outpost on the now open c-file.

13.Bd3 h6 14.Nd2

Game position after 14.Nd2

White wants to eliminate the troublesome Black Knight.

14...Nxd2 15.Bxd2 Nc6 16.Qg4

A familiar sortie in this opening.

16...g6 17.Re3

Rook lift further signals White's intention to invade the Kingside.


Game position after 17...0-0-0

Black responds by sweeping his King away to the Queenside.

18.Rg3 Kb8

Black wants to get his King still further from the center.


Is White playing waiting moves?


If Black can get his Kingside rolling forward, not only will he take away White's activity but the White King will soon be in peril.


Forced but now Black's center is mobile.


(20...g5 was another idea.)


Nxd4 Black has a great Knight and his prospects look good.

(21...e4?? would be disastrous: 22.Bf4 Qxf4 23.Rxf4 exd3 24.f7 Ka8 25.Qxg6 dxc2 26.Qxc2+-)

22.Re3 e4

Black has won the battle for space and White must find an inferior square for his embattled Bishop.

(22...Nc6 looks a lot less fun for Black but poses more problems for White than the text move, 23.Bxg6 Rhf8 24.Rxe5 Rxf6 25.Re3 Rdf8 26.Qxc7+ Kxc7 27.Rg3 h5 28.Bxh5 Rxf2 29.Bh6 R8f6+-)


Game position after 23.Rxe4!!

White exposes the one little flaw of 22...e4. The Rook can't be taken or the Queen will fall and the pawn advance has left the Knight hanging.


Black must exchange Queens but given the Black Queen's complete lack of an exit strategy, White has time to profit with the in between move.


Saving his Rook, claiming the Knight and the Black Queen still has no escape.


This does help Black win the exchange but in a few moves when the melee is over, White has the best of the entire fraca:

(24...Qxd3 is another way to simplify but Black still has major problems 25.Rxd3 Bf5 26.Bf4+ Ka8 27.Rc3 g5 28.Be5 Rhf8+-)

25.Rxg4 Bxg4 26.Bxg6 Rhg8 27.Bh7 Rh8 28.Bd3 Rde8 29.f7 Re7

(29...Ref8 Only gets the Black Rooks in big trouble with the White Bishops. 30.Bg6 Kc7 31.Bc3 Be6 32.f4 Bd7 33.Re1 Bxa4 34.Bxh8 Rxh8 35.Re8 Rxe8 36.fxe8Q Bxe8 37.Bxe8+-)

30.f8Q+ Rxf8 31.Bb4

Game position after 31.Bb4

And the advanced pawn has helped White win back the exchange with advantage.

31...Rff7 32.Bxe7 Rxe7

White's Kingside majority, skilfully marshalled will now win the game for White.

33.f3 Bd7 34.a5 Kc7 35.Kf2 Rf7 36.Ke3 Kd6 37.g3 Kc5 38.f4 Bg4 39.Rb1 Re7+ 40.Kd2 b6 41.axb6 axb6 42.h3 Bd7

Game position after 42...Bd7

(Black didn't take with 42...Bxh3 because of 43.Rh1 Bg4 44.Rxh6+-)

43.g4 d4 44.f5 Re3 45.f6 Rf3 46.Rf1

When the Rooks go the end will be nigh.

46...Rxf1 47.Bxf1 Be6

Game position after 47...Be6

Black resigns, there is no way to stem the tide on the Kingside.


Fischer - Schweber, Buenos Aires, 1970)

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