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Feb 18 15

Viktor Korchnoi vs Gata Kamsky and Judit Polgar.

In honor of the legend Viktor Korchnoi, who is playing this week in Zurich, let’s look back at a few of his blindfold games from 1994. Here he grinds down a young Judit Polgar in a queen’s indian gone right for white. Polgar actually achieved the advantage after 21 .. g4, with her king side attack coming faster, but gave up the advantage after the inaccuracy on move 26. Taking with the h pawn would have left more dynamic tension around the white king. White’s queen side domination eventually was decisive, and Polgar resigned.

So, after that nice victory, let’s look at a less flattering game from his fairly poor performance that year. Here Korchnoi makes a horrible blindfold blunder playing against another legend, Gata Kamsky, and hangs his queen on move 20. Yes, even the player known as “the strongest player to never be World Champion” can hang his queen, so we definitely shouldn’t feel so bad if/when we do the same!