Mikhail Tal's Audacious Queen Sacrifice - Tal vs. Hecht, 1962
Where does Tal vs. Hecht rank in your list of great queen sacrifices?

Mikhail Tal's Audacious Queen Sacrifice - Tal vs. Hecht, 1962

NM SamCopeland

For many, Mikhail Tal's most memorable queen sacrifice is his offering against Hans-Joachim Hecht from the 1962 Olympiad where the recent world chess champion held down fourth board for the Soviet team.

With exf6!!, Mikhail Tal pitted his minor pieces (all of which were soon hanging!) against Hecht's centralized royalty.

The game is instructive not just for the beautiful queen sacrifice, but also for the endgame that ensues. Despite being a pawn down, the chances are all with Tal thanks to his vastly superior pawn structure. Black's pawns soon start to fall and Tal converts this dramatic game.


  • When situations change, change plans ...c6?
  • When the opponent is uncastled, strive to catch the king in the center.
  • Don't fear a pawn down endgame when your opponent's structure is shattered.

My notes are below. Note that Hecht *might* have saved this endgame with superior play.

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