Chess: When winning isn't everything

AT A tournament in Monaco, a team of veterans led by Spassky and Smyslov were narrowly defeated, 37-35, by the best female players in the world, writes William Hartston.

Despite being significantly lower rated than their opponents, the women calculated more precisely and fought harder. Too often the men's promising positions faded into draws, while the women potted their points.

Boris Spassky infuriated his team captain on at least one occasion by agreeing a draw in a clearly better position, although in the following game the point was shared only after all ideas had been exhausted.

Playing an opening - the Tarrasch Defence to the Queen's Gambit - that had brought him success in the 1969 world championship match, Spassky introduced a beautiful idea with 18 . . . Be6] The point was revealed in a queen sacrifice on the following move. If White takes the queen, after 20. Bxd5 Bxe3+ 21. Kg2 Bxd5+ Black has all the winning chances.

As the game went, Black won a pawn, but 22. Rd6 posed an awkward threat of a back-rank mate. Spassky's solution was too cautious. Exchanging his white-squared bishop for a knight, he left f7 difficult to defend. The pawn fell, material equality was re- established and the draw became inevitable. But Boris will be happy to have played a nice queen sacrifice and an entertaining game. Winning is not so important at his age.

White: Joseliani

Black: Spassky

1 d4 d5 16 Nc5 Re5

2 c4 e6 17 e4 dxe3

3 Nc3 c5 18 fxe3 Be6

4 cxd5 exd5 19 Nxb7 Qxd5

5 Nf3 Nc6 20 Rxc6 Bxe3

6 g3 Nf6 21 Kh1 Qxa2

7 Bg2 Be7 22 Rd6 Re8

8 0-0 0-0 23 Rd8 Bc8

9 dxc5 Bxc5 24 Rxe8 Rxe8

10 Bg5 d4 25 Bd5 Bxb7

11 Bxf6 Qxf6 26 Bxb7 Kh8

12 Nd5 Qd8 27 Qd7 Qe6

13 Nd2 a6 28 Rxf7 Qxd7

14 Rc1 Ba7 29 Rxd7

15 Ne4 Re8 Draw agreed

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Life and Style
Steve Shaw shows Kate how to get wet behind the ears and how to align her neck
healthSteven Shaw - the 'Buddha of Breaststroke' - applies Alexander Technique to the watery sport
Arts and Entertainment
The sight of a bucking bronco in the shape of a pink penis was too much for Hollywood actor and gay rights supporter Martin Sheen, prompting him to boycott a scene in the TV series Grace and Frankie
tv
Sport
footballShirt then goes on sale on Gumtree
Voices
Terry Sue-Patt as Benny in the BBC children’s soap ‘Grange Hill’
voicesGrace Dent on Grange Hill and Terry Sue-Patt
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Arts and Entertainment
Performers drink tea at the Glastonbury festival in 2010
music
Arts and Entertainment
Twin Peaks stars Joan Chen, Michael Ontkean, Kyle Maclachlan and Piper Laurie
tvName confirmed for third series
Sport
Cameron Jerome
footballCanaries beat Boro to gain promotion to the Premier League
Arts and Entertainment
art
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine