april 30 2019

In the post-Easter course, we had pleasure to meet Antoni again who joined the usual participants.

The day's game was very time-consuming, and for good reason, since it was Tal - Keller, so the fairy part was seriously shortened.

Below is the animated report

Master's word


"You are going to give him a crane as a mistress? -- No doubt, or an actress -- I want her to be romantic and disinterested -- Then she will be a crane" (E. Popesco & L. Jouvet in "Education de prince", 1938).

"The barbarian is the one who does not remember".

De maistre 1                      

"May your hands always be busy, May your feet always be swift, May you have a strong foundation When the winds of changes shift. May your heart always be joyful, May your song always be sung, May you stay forever young".

"When one hears these so-called republicans speak of liberty and virtue, one believes to see a faded courtesan, playing the airs of a virgin with a carmine modesty" (J. de Maistre). 

"You will reap what you sow" (L. Reed).

"All the great things I have done in my life I have done by disobeying" (Marshal Leclerc).


A tribute to Hervé Forneri, alias Dick Rivers, who is also leaving us. I had the pleasure of listening to him and his "Chats sauvages", at... 150 metres from my present home, in the summer of 1961. I don't know if his girlfriend was "bitchy", or even "almost as bitchy as him", but I think he was right to advise her (at least to pretend) to be "more serious". https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oGXHUeSzRDY It was on this that I played, in a café where we smoked and listened to the music box, my first competitive games (by teams) well before my first tournament. To God Hervé.

The day's game being literally monstrous, we had to drastically limit the endgame section, just correcting the exercises.

GipslisThe "Viking" Aivars Gipslis, a compatriot of the hero of the day and almost the same age, starts the endgame with one pawn less. Later he will play for the win! The way in which a single pawn on the "a" file nullifies the pawns on the kingside is reminiscent of some games of Kortchnoi.


A promotion to Bishop to counter a stalemate threat coming after... mate threats, and leading itself to mate. A ballet of rooks enriched with a nice idea... not foreseen by the author.

As homework for the next time, a king placement, a stalemate rescue and a rook domination.

The insane game is led by the one who would become, the following year, the 8th world champion and the youngest of them all: the magician of Riga, whose style remains, 60 years later, the most appreciated by all the players.

On a sub-forum, people argue about the spelling: is it Tahl or Tal? The second is the usual one. But Camil Seneca (1903-1977), a famous problemist and columnist, founder of the journal Thèmes/64, chose the former, no doubt to express that it was not a simple "l" (in Cyrillic Таль). More accurate (but inelegant) might have been "Talh". In any case, the only correct one is Tāls, as demonstrated in Riga's Vērmanes Park!

Jurmala riga 25

This phenomenal game is even more exciting after sifting through the analysis engines. In spite of its faults (white on the 18th, 19th & 22nd moves, black on the 16th, 18th, 23rd & 28th) it contains remarkable intuitions, including from Black's player, "simple" Swiss IM. How many criticized moves at the time, which turn out to be excellent! And how many new tracks... in cinemascope, like the French invention of the same name!Tal keller

Among the numerous dishevelled analyses, which took us a record time, let us point out the study included in the 15th Black move, with the pretty point Qd4!! followed by Qd1!!, while the immediate Qd1? goes as far as losing. Another skirmish, in the analysis of 17...Rg5, about the "mosquito bite": your master builder had naturally seen 21 exf7? Rxg3+! followed by mate, moreover a theme of this game, but had forgotten it. And he remained unmoved when his listeners proposed exf7! But in 18 Qe8+, 23 Qe3?! variation, we all overestimated the same move 25...Rxg3+?!

Very few fairytales, which is understandable. An amusement on a toric chessboard not having convinced the (numerous) listeners, we send them back to the masterpiece of the genre (serie helpmate in quadruplet) already fifty years old. http://lecoursdumaitre.e-monsite.com/pages/cours/cat-2007/6-mars-2007.html

Training. In 2#: blockade, cycle, sacrifice, generous key, then a Danish festival of 5 problems, the most amazing being the most recent. A French work on a well-known theme, an Albionesque surprise and a performance where something (what is it?) happens 8 times.

The first 3#, also French, was proposed at the 2017 European Championship in... Riga. This is followed by a German riddle and a combination of two themes by the Russian giant. An easy 19th century 4#, by a German author with a French surname. An amusing exercise from Nice. Then, in 5 moves, a beautiful use of space.

Two 3# helpmates, one with a twin, the other (Alsatian) as an entry test to our brotherhood. Finally, in selfmate, a nice Macedonian cycle.

Have a good time. See you in a few weeks.  Deus vos custodiat.

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