Chess

Click to follow
The Independent Culture
A FEW months ago, the British Chess Magazine (BCM - their shop is at 69, Masbro Road London W14 0LS 0171-603-2877) ran a competition to find the "most amazing move of all time".

This was inspired by Alexei Shirov's fantastic 47... Bh3!! in Linares in March.

Alexei Shirov (Black to play)

Veselin Topalov (White)

Shirov's problem was how to get his king into play before Topalov could erect a blockade on the black squares, and his elegant and surprising sacrifice achieved this.

47... Bh3!! 48 gxh3 Kf5 49 Kf2 Ke4 50 Bxf6 d4 51 Be7 Kd3 52 Bc5 Kc4 53 Be7 Kb3 0-1

The BCM selected a short list of 50 moves which was submitted to a panel of 10 experts, including myself, and Shirov duly won, though there were many other fine contenders.

Taking his cue from this, the Dutchman Tim Krabbe, author of two books in Dutch on Chess Curiosities (translated into English with that title by Allen and Unwin in 1985, though sadly now long out of print) has compiled his own list. which he is publishing weekly on his home page on the Internet - http://www.xs4all.nl/timkr/chess/ chess.html - 10 at a time.

Originally, Krabbe intended to have a round 100, but following suggestions from readers he's already increased it to 110. The latest instalment, from 40 to 31, came out last Friday, 30 October. This is his number 50 - so that you can see what delights should be in store as he reaches "lift- off".

Fritz Baumbach (Black)

Adrian Hollis (White to play)

This is from the Potter Memorial Correspondence tournament in about 1976, which Hollis won. White has to move the rook and if 26 Rf1 Ba8 27 Ne4 c5 28 Rxf2 Qe1+ 29 Rf1 Qe2 gets counterplay, though 30 Kg1 probably wins.

The point of Hollis's amazing move is that on the more natural square, b1, it would get hit after 27... Qh7.

26 Ra1!! Qh5 27 g4 Qh7 28 f7 Bg3 29 h3 c5 30 Nxb7 Qxg7 31 Rf1 Qf8 32 Nxc5 1-0

jspeelman@compuserve.com

Comments