R A D I O     M A T C H     R E V I E W E D


 The games of the U.S.A.- U.S.S.R Radio Match are re-
published with annotations b y the American players.
The second part of this series will appear next month.


                   by Samuel Reshevsky

                                                                                 CHESS REVIEW NOVEMBER 1945

White’s pieces now come into action too rapidly. However, if 23….P-B4; 24 B-B3, P-Q5; 25 QR-K1, Q-B3 ( or 25…Q-Q3); 26 B-R5 

24 B-B4             P-B4
25 B—K6ch     K-R1
26 BxQP          R-Q1
27 QR-Q1        P-B5

  The counter-chance. The two Bishops have already become very threatening.

28  BxKtP        P-B6 

  I overestimated the strength of this move 28…Q-B3 and if 29 KR-K1, Q-R3ch; 30 K-Kt1, P-B6 gave better chances than in the text.

29 B-K5            ….. 

  White’s Bishops are now magnificently posted. At this point I had expected to play 29….Q-K7; 30 KR-K1, P-B7! – or QR-K1, Q-Q7 followed by 31…P-B7. The flaw is BxP!, RxB?; 31 QR-K1!

29….                P-Kt5
30 B-QKt3!      R-Q7

  What else is there? If the Black Rook surrenders the Q file, then 31 R –Q7 is decisive.

31 P-B4          P-KR4

  The king needs fresh air.

32 R-QKt1    R-KB7?!

  An attempt at a “ swindle.” If 32… Q-R6; 33 KR-Q1 and with Black’s Queen fenced in, White wins as he pleases.

33 KR-K1            …… 

  If 33 RxQ, RxRch; 34 K-R2, PxR; 35 BxP, RxP and with Rook and two pawns for two Bishops, Black has a likely draw.

  But 33 KR-Q1! Was even more forcible than the text. 

33…….               Q-Q7 

  Further opposition on the seventh rank would not do: 33 …. R-K7; 34 KR-Q1! And wins. 

34 QR-Q1          Q-Kt7 

  White now wins by force; at last the two terrible Bishops are unleashed.

  However, if 34….R-K7; 35  R-KKt1, Q-K6; 36 R-Q8ch and wins 

35 R-Q8ch              K-R2
36 B-Kt8ch           K-Kt3  

  I had enough seconds left to “appreciate” the beauty of  36….K-R3; 37  R-Q6ch, P-Kt3;  38 R-Q7, P-Kt4; 39 R-Q6 mate! What Bishops! 

37 R-Q6ch           K-B4
38 B-K6ch         K-Kt3
39 B-Q5ch           K-R2
40 B-K4ch         K-Kt1 

  If 40…P-Kt3; 41 R-Q8 forces mate. 

41 B-Kt6        Resigns

For if 41….K-B1; 42 R-Q7, R-Q7; 43 B-Q6ch, RxB; 44 R-K8 mate.

Samuel Reshevsky            Vassily Smyslov

 Resevsky did not realize that during the first game he was playing against all the best analysts in the soviet union. The variation has been the subject of considerable discussion among Soviet players; the first 24 moves are all “book” having appeared in their entirety in the May issue of “Chess in the USSR.” The variation adopted in the second game has also the benefit of considerable study in Soviet chess circles. – Ed.


V. Smyslov          S. Reshevsky

White                        Black 

1 P-K4                           P-K4
2 Kt-KB3               Kt-QB3
3 B-Kt5                   P- QR3
4 B-R4                       Kt-B3
 5 O-O                          KtxP

  As a rule, I prefer the quieter continuation  5….B-K2. But on this occasion I was naturally interested in a more lively line of play. 

6 P-Q4                  P-QKt4
7 B-Kt3                     P-Q4
8 PxP                        B-K3
9 P-B3                    B-QB4

   Here again I made the same kind of choice as at move 5:  9…..B-K2 is the more solid but less adventurous move.

10 QKt-Q2                O-O
11 B-B2                      ……

  On 11 Q-K2 Black can simply play 11…KtxKt; 12 BxKt, B-KKt5 with a good game – or else 11…B-B4 ( and if 12 B-B2?, KtxQBP).  

11……                     P-B4

  Here I had an opportunity to play the Dilworth Variation ( 11… KtxKBP; 12 RxKt,P-B3). I declined for two reasons: (a) Smyslov had had a chance to play against this variation when Botvinnik tried it against him in the Moscow Championship of 1943 – a game, by the way, which Smyslov won;  (b) the variation itself does not seem quite good enough, and its present popularity will doubtless prove ephemeral.

 12 Kt-Kt3                B-Kt3
13 KKt-Q4            KtxKt
14  KtxKt                …….

14……               BxKt

 Played with the following sacrifice in mind. The logical move is 14..Q-Q2 and then if 15 B-Kt3, Black defends comfortably with 15 …P-B3 ; or if 15 P-B3, Kt-B4; 16 P-QKt4, Kt-Kt2 and Black should be able to react strongly  with ….P-QB4 or ….P-QR4.

14…Q-K2 also looks plausible. If then 15 B—Kt3, BxKt  (both 15…P-B3 and…. either R-Q1 are impossible);  16 PxB, P-B5; 17 P-B3, Kt-Kt6!  This was the course adopted in a famous game Fleissig-Mackenzie, Vienna, 1882, in which the sacrifice was played or the first time.  In a later game with the same line (Bogolyubov- Euwe, Match, 1941 White declined the offer temporarily with 18 R-K1, but Black maintained a good attacking position with 18 …Q-R5.

Another possibility after  14 …. Q-K2 is 15 P-B3 , Kt-Kt4; 16 BxKt, QxB; 17 K-R1, Q-K2; 18 B-Kt3, BxKt;  19 PxB, QR-B1 followed by ….20…P-B4 with a satisfactory game.

  14….Q-K1 is still another move which deserves consideration. 

15 PxB                P-B5
16 P-B3        Kt-Kt6?!

  A brainstorm! The move certainly looks promising! Had I known at the time that Smyslov made his first fifteen moves in one minute, indicating a thorough familiarity with the variation, I would have been more discreet.

17 PxKt!          PxP

  Now 18….QR-5 is threatened , with a lasting attack during  the course of which Black chases the White King to the Queen-side picks up several Pawns and obtains dangerous passed Pawns on the KKt and KR files.

18 Q-Q3!                …… 

  Note that in the Fleissig-Mackenzie game referred to previously, White’s KB was on QKt3 after the sacrifice of Black’s Knight. Hence White did not have the resource in the text. White threatens QxPch with a devastating attack, and if 18….Q-R5; 19 QxPch, QxQ; 20 BxQch, KxB; 21 B-Q2 followed by B-K1 and BxP. White would be a pawn up, and while the Bishops of opposite colors would give drawing chances, such a position is nothing to look forward to.

  Or if 18…P-Kt3; 19 Q-K3!, Q-R5; 20 Q-R6 and Black’s attack is over. 

18…..                  B-B4
19 QxB !              RxQ
20 BxR               Q-R5
21 B-R3              …….

  The only defense , but adequate. 

21…..               QxPch 

  With only a Queen for a Rook and two Bishops, Black must try to pick up as many Pawns as possible. His one chance is to get his resulting passed Pawns in motion before White’s Bishops get to work. 

22 K-R1            QxKP
23 B-Q2               QxP 

                                                      Game 1 in viewer                                                                     Game 2 in viewer                

The authoritative notes to the USA-USSR Radio Match games in this series were prepared exclusively for CHESS REVIEW by members of the United States team. 





S. Reshevsky           V. Smyslov     

White                Black       

1 P-Q4             P-Q4    
2 P-QB            P-QB3
3 Kt-KB3         Kt-B3   
4 Kt- B3           PxP       
5 P-K3             ……..   

The fashionable move 5 P-QR4 has been mulled over so much that I like to play the text occasionally  to get off the beaten track.

5……           P-QKt4
6 P-QR4          P-Kt5
7 Kt-R2            P-K3
8 BxP              B-K2

Even at this early stage, we have clearly outlined for us the chief problems which will face each player . for White, the question is how to get the rather misplaced QKt into active play;  for Black, how is his problem child, the QB, to get a good diagonal? The advantage of Black’s QBP, opening the long diagonal, is of prime importance.

   9 O-O                O-O
10 Q-K2              B-K
        11   R-Q1            P-QR4t2

He rules out the possibility of P-R5, artificially isolating the Black QKtP.

12 B-Q2             ……

The plan of development initiated with this move is rather slow, and in any event it requires considerable reflection to appraise the resulting possibilities. Meanwhile the clock ticks away!

  It may well be that the more natural 12 P-K4 followed by B-KKt5 is the  more promising  continuation. Nevertheless, I still consider the text line quite feasible.

12 . . . .              QK-Q2
13 Kt-B1          Q-Kt3  
14 Kt-Kt3           …….  

I took 48 minutes on this move, with the result that time pressure plagued me right up to the fortieth move. The move may seem quite obvious, and yet the choice between 14 KKt3 and 14 Kt-Q3 is a puzzling one. At Q3 the Knight has effective pressure on the important center square K5, but White’s pieces are crowded and each other’s way. At Kt3 the Knight is still not too well posted.

14……               P-B4



Once Black has played this move, he has overcome the difficulties of the opening. 

15 B-K1               KR-Q1
16 B-Kt5                …......

  Leading to a new , complicated phase, White makes room for his QKt at QB4, where it will finally be well posted. 

16 . . . .                 B-Q4
17 QKt-Q2       Q-Kt2
18 Kt-B4          Kt-Kt3

Immediately disputing the Knight’s new position.

19 QKt-K5          Kt-K5
20 PxP             KtxQBP

White went into this exchange in order to give his pieces more room in the center. But Black also benefits by the removal of the Pawns.

21 Kt-Q4        KR-QB1
22 P-B3            ……….

  The embarrassing weakness of his QRP prevents White from getting his QR into play.

      22 ……               Kt-Kt6    
23 KtxKt             BxKt
  24 R-Q3              ……..

Unavoidable, for after 24 R-Q2, both White rooks would be awkwardly situated.

24 . . . .                  B-B7
25 R-Q2               P-Kt6

  This wedge in White’s position is very irritating; but White philosophically hopes that the advanced KtP will become weak later on.

26 B-B2               B-Kt5

27 R-Q4             Kt-Q4

White’s position is sturdier than it looks. Thus if 27…B-B6; 28 PxB, P-Kt7; 29 R(1)-Q1 !, P-Kt8(Q); 30 RxQ, BxR; 31 P-K4, RxP; 32 Q-Kt2, Q-B2; 33 Kt-B6, RxKt; 34 BxR , QxB; 35 QxB and Black cannot even try to win a pawn with 35….KtxP? because of 36 Q-Q1 doubly attacking the Knight and threatening R-Q8ch at the same time. 

28 Kt-Q3           P-K4

  Black finally goes for the exchange, but White has resources. 

 29 KtxP                    B-B6
30 Kt-B4                  BxR

  31 PxB                    Q-B2

Now that Black has won the exchange, his position proved very diificult. White has a useful passed Pawn and two very strong Bishops. His Knight is also agile, controlling important squares. Black’s pieces, on the other hand, seem to have come to a standstill; and his Queen-side Pawns are weak.

32 B-Kt3               Q-R2
  33 Q-K5                Kt-Kt5
 34 Kt-Q6               R-B1   
  35 Q-K3                QR-Q1
36 Q-B3                Q-K2   
 37 R-K1                Q-Kt4   

 38 Q-K3                Q-Kt3

  Black’s refusal to exchange Queens is an admission that White’s endgame prospects are very favorable


39 Kt-K4??              ……. 

This move, played with only a few seconds left on the clock, ruins my position. Correct was 39 Kt-Kt7! Leaving Black with an untenable game.

39……                   BxKt

Exchanging his useless Bishop for the powerful Knight. Worse yet, white cannot retake with the Pawn because of 40….Kt-B7. 

40 QxB                   Kt-B7 

Wins the QP. Smyslov plays very strongly from this point on. 

41 QxQ                  RPxQ
42 R-QB1              KtxP   
43 B-B7                 R-Q4  
44 B-QB4             R-B1!

Nicely played (if 15 BxR, Kt-K7ch). 

45 B-R6                  R-K1  
46 K-B1                  Kt-B7

   47 K-Kt1                 R-K8ch

48 RxR                     KtxR  
49 K-B2                   Kt-B7

Another way was 49 ... KtxKtP; 50 KxKt,  R-Q7ch followed by …. RxKtP, when the advanced QKtP will cost White one of  his Bishops. 

50 K-K2                R-QB4
51 B-Kt3              Kt_Kt5
52 B-Q3                P-Kt4   
53 B-K4                R-B5    
54 B-K1                K_B1  
55 B-B3                 P-B3   
56 P-Kt4               K-K2   
57 K-Q2               K-Q3   

With the arrival of Black's King, the ending takes a decisive turn.

58 K-K2                Kt-Q4
59 BxRP                  RxP
60 B-K1                 R-R7
61 K-Q3                  RxP
62 K-B4                 R-K7
63 B-Kt3ch           Kt-B5

64 KxP                   RxB

The simplest. White has managed to stop the terrible QKtP, but his King is now too  far  from the king-side.  

65 PxR             K-K4
66 P-R4             KxP
67 PxP               PxP
68 K-B4           K-B6
69 B-K1            KxP
70 K-Q4           K-B6
71 K-K5           P-Kt5