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Korchnoi-Spassky Candidates 1977: French Winawer Part 1

  • NM GreenLaser
  • | Jul 30, 2011
  • | 3899 views
  • | 11 comments

The final match of the Candidates in 1977 was between Viktor Korchnoi and former World Champion Boris Spassky. Korchnoi won 10.5-7.5. Two-thirds of Korchnoi’s three point lead came from the French Defense, which he used in two-thirds of his games as Black. This accounted for one-third of the entire match. The French Defense was used six times. All six games displayed the Winawer Variation. Korchnoi won three, lost one, and drew two games. Readers have sometimes requested more coverage of the French Defense and in particular mentioned this match.

I have chosen to show the games from this match in which the French Defense was used in two parts. In Part 1 are the two games with 7.Qg4 cxd4 (C18). Game two of the match continues 8.Qxg7 and is the main game. Korchnoi won that game. Within that game is game twelve, won by Spassky, which continues 8.cxd4. Many of the possible alternatives are not shown since they are beyond the scope of one article. The two games are shown with annotations and game references. The Winawer is complex and is a challenge not only to the analytical ability of those facing it, but also to many in the stylistic sense. In Part 2, Spassky did not play 7.Qg4, but used Nf3 or a4 (C19) instead. This more positional approach led to two wins and two draws for Korchnoi.


Comments


  • 3 years ago

    NM TheIndianAttacker

    wow-very well played by korchnoi, besides my friend also crushes me whenever i venture into his poisened pawnTongue out

  • 3 years ago

    ChrisWainscott

    Wow.  This game is following me!  I've decided to learn the French and just two days ago I was reading the Winawer Chapter in Byron Jacob's Starting Out: The French.  This game is Game Two in that book.

    Excellent game by Korchnoi.

  • 3 years ago

    NM GreenLaser

    hondaguy, thanks for answering the question posed by cookie3.

  • 3 years ago

    NM GreenLaser

    wbport, after ...b6, Rxd5 is possible, but Black can exchange queens. Be4 avoids exchanges and tries to attack. White missed 37 (and 38) Rd8 winning.

  • 3 years ago

    cookie3

    Ooops!  sorry, and thanks!  Guess i was looking through the game too quickly; makes a whole lot more sense when viewed correctly!Foot in mouth  Thanks for correction!

  • 3 years ago

    TheProdigalKnight

    Cookie3, It's not Spassky than is down two pawns but Korchnoi.  Korchnoi's attack with Queen and Rook is worth more than two pawns; it's decisive.  White has to give away big material to avoid being checkmated quickly.  Thus White resigns.

  • 3 years ago

    wbport

  • 3 years ago

    Bronir

    I like playing french defense, so this one got me interested. It's a very good article, thanks for the info! :D

  • 3 years ago

    cookie3

    I do not understand why the main game ended as it did.  It seems that Spassky could have at least recovered one of the two pawns he was down almost immediately.  Could you please explain why it ended so?  Was there time trouble?  Thanks for another great article, they are always interesting and educational!

  • 3 years ago

    NimzoRoy

    Thanks for posting this fascinating game...too bad none of the chickens I play wanna go into this line as Black, personally I like it from both sides!

  • 3 years ago

    Norb68

    Nice.

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