Part 11: The Top Ten (20 November 1998)

The last installment - I hope you have enjoyed the series, and that you're just as amazed by my number one as I was when I first saw it.
    The idea of making a collection of Fantastic Moves began with Shirov's 47...Bh3 against Topalov in this year's Linares. It inspired British Chess Magazine to have a poll for the 'Most Amazing Move of All Time' and this in turn, as a lifelong collector of the bizarre and the beautiful in chess, inspired me. The more so as, however laudible their initiative was, BCM's shortlist of 50 Amazing Moves was rather disappointing. It missed too many truly amazing moves - even my number one - and included too many moves that were spectacular, beautiful, famous, and the first that most players would consider. My list of 110 Fantastic Moves (due to reader response, I had to change the title midway) shares only 17 moves with the BCM list of 50 - but 7 with their top 10.
    There are moves of all sorts among my 110: incomprehensible King's moves, sweeping insights, long-term sacrifices, inconspicuous pawn moves, theoretical novelties that no one ever thought of, improbable moves away from the action, and even a few brilliancies. What they all have in common is that some leap of imagination was necessary to find them. All are from serious play, the vast majority from grandmaster practice. Click here to go to number 10. Of course, the earlier installments can also still be viewed. As always, comments are welcome.
    To view the moves you can use the scrollbar, but you can also click from diagram to diagram. You can also download the gamefile.

10.        38.Qxh7+
Bischoff - Nogueiras, Havana 1998
1.c4 c6 2.Nf3 d5 3.e3 Nf6 4.Nc3 e6 5.Qc2 Nbd7 6.b3 Bd6 7.Be2 O-O 8.Bb2 a6 9.d4 e5 10.O-O-O e4 11.Nd2 Re8 12.g4 Nf8 13.Rdg1 Be6 14.h4 b5 15.c5 Bc7 16.g5 N6d7 17.f3 exf3 18.Nxf3 f5 19.Kb1 b4 20.Nd1 Ng6 21.h5 Ne7 22.Bd3 a5 23.Nf2 Nf8 24.Nh3 Qb8 25.Ne5 a4 26.Nf4 axb3 27.axb3 Bxe5 28.dxe5 Bc8 29.e6 Nxe6 30.Nxe6 Bxe6 31.Bxg7 d4 32.Bxd4 Ra3 33.Bc4 Nd5 34.h6 Nc3+ 35.Bxc3 Bxc4 36.Bb2 Bxb3 37.Qxf5 Qa7 38.Qxh7+ Qxh7+ 39.g6 Ba2+ 40.Kc1 and Black resigned

9.        69...Be3
Hindle - Möhring, Tel Aviv 1964
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.c3 d5 5.exd5 Qxd5 6.cxd4 Bg4 7.Be2 O-O-O 8.Nc3 Qd7 9.d5 Bxf3 10.Bxf3 Ne5 11.Be2 Nf6 12.O-O Nxd5 13.Nxd5 Qxd5 14.Qa4 Bc5 15.Qc2 Nc6 16.Bc4 Nd4 17.Qc3 Qd6 18.Be3 f5 19.Rfd1 f4 20.Bxd4 Bxd4 21.Qf3 Rhe8 22.Rac1 Qb6 23.b3 h6 24.h3 g5 25.a4 a5 26.Rd3 Rd6 27.Rdd1 Kb8 28.Re1 Rxe1+ 29.Rxe1 Ka7 30.Re8 Qb4 31.Kh2 Qd2 32.Re2 Qb4 33.Qe4 Qc5 34.Qf3 Qb6 35.Rc2 Qb4 36.Bb5 Bb6 37.Bc4 Qe1 38.Qe2 Qa1 39.Rd2 Qf6 40.Rxd6 Qxd6 41.Kg1 c6 42.Qd3 Qc5 43.Qf3 Qe5 44.Be2 Qd6 45.Kf1 Qc5 46.g4 fxg3ep 47.Qxg3 Qc1+ 48.Kg2 Qd2 49.Qf3 Qd4 50.Bc4 Bc5 51.Qf5 Kb6 52.Qf3 Qe5 53.Qg3 Qd4 54.Qf3 Qe5 55.Qg3 Qe4+ 56.Qf3 Qd4 57.Qf5 Bd6 58.Qd3 Qxd3 59.Bxd3 Kc5 60.Bg6 Kb4 61.Bf7 b5 62.axb5 cxb5 63.Kf3 a4 64.bxa4 bxa4 65.h4 Kc3 66.Kg4 Bf4 67.h5 a3 68.Kf5 Kb2 69.Kg6 Be3 70.Kxh6 g4+ 71.fxe3 g3 72.Kh7 g2 73.h6 g1Q 74.Kh8 a2 75.Bxa2 Kxa2 76.h7 Qg6 77.e4 Qf7 and White resigned

8.         18.Nc6
Kholmov - Bronstein, Kiev 1964
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nc3 d6 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 a6 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Be7 8.Qf3 Qc7 9.O-O-O Nbd7 10.g4 b5 11.Bxf6 gxf6 12.f5 Ne5 13.Qh3 O-O 14.g5 b4 15.gxf6 Bxf6 16.Rg1+ Kh8 17.Qh6 Qe7 18.Nc6 Nxc6 19.e5 Bg5+ 20.Rxg5 f6 21.exd6 Qf7 22.Rg3 bxc3 23.Bc4 cxb2+ 24.Kb1 Nd8 25.Rdg1 Ra7 26.d7 Rxd7 27.fxe6 Nxe6 28.Bxe6 Rd1+ 29.Rxd1 Bxe6 30.Kxb2 Rb8+ 31.Ka1 Bxa2 32.Rgd3 Qe7 33.Kxa2 Qe6+ 34.Rb3 and Black resigned

7.         26.Bh6
Vladimirov - Epishin, USSR 1987
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e6 6.g4 h6 7.h4 Be7 8.g5 hxg5 9.Bxg5 Nc6 10.Qd2 a6 11.O-O-O Bd7 12.f4 Nxd4 13.Qxd4 Bc6 14.Rg1 Qa5 15.Bh3 Qc5 16.Qd3 b5 17.f5 b4 18.Be3 Qa5 19.Qc4 Bb7 20.fxe6 bxc3 21.Rxg7 d5 22.Qb3 cxb2+ 23.Kb1 Qb5 24.exf7+ Kf8 25.Rdg1 Qxb3 26.Bh6 Ng4 27.Rh7+ Nxh6 28.Rxh8+ Kxf7 29.Rh7+ and Black resigned

6.        14.Rxh4
Anand - Ivanchuk, Las Palmas 1996
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.O-O Bc5 6.Nxe5 Nxe5 7.d4 Nxe4 8.Re1 Be7 9.Rxe4 Ng6 10.c4 O-O 11.Nc3 d6 12.Nd5 Bh4 13.Qh5 c6 14.Rxh4 Qxh4 15.Qxh4 Nxh4 16.Nb6 Rb8 17.Bf4 Nf5 18.d5 Re8 19.Kf1 h6 20.h3 Re4 21.Bh2 cxd5 22.g4 Rxc4 23.Nxc4 dxc4 24.Re1 Be6 25.gxf5 Bxf5 26.Bxd6 Bxh3+ 27.Kg1 Rd8 28.Re8+ Rxe8 29.Bxe8 Be6 30.a4 g5 31.a5 Kg7 32.Ba4 Kg6 33.Bd1 Bd5 34.Bc2+ Kf6 35.Bc7 Ke6 36.Bh7 Bf3 37.Kh2 Kd5 38.Bc2 Be4 39.Bd1 Kd4 40.Be2 Bd3 41.Bb6+ Kd5 42.Bd1 f5 43.Kg3 Ke5 44.Bc5 Kf6 45.Bh5 f4+ 46.Kh2 and Black resigned

5.        21.Qg7
Ivanchuk - Shirov, Wijk aan Zee 1996
1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 e6 5.Bg5 dxc4 6.e4 b5 7.e5 h6 8.Bh4 g5 9.Nxg5 hxg5 10.Bxg5 Nbd7 11.exf6 Bb7 12.g3 c5 13.d5 Qb6 14.Bg2 O-O-O 15.O-O b4 16.Na4 Qb5 17.a3 exd5 18.axb4 cxb4 19.Be3 Nc5 20.Qg4+ Rd7 21.Qg7 Bxg7 22.fxg7 Rg8 23.Nxc5 d4 24.Bxb7+ Rxb7 25.Nxb7 Qb6 26.Bxd4 Qxd4 27.Rfd1 Qxb2 28.Nd6+ Kb8 29.Rdb1 Qxg7 30.Rxb4+ Kc7 31.Ra6 Rb8 32.Rxa7+ Kxd6 33.Rxb8 Qg4 34.Rd8+ Kc6 35.Ra1 and Black resigned

4.        48...Rxb3+
Brzozka - Bronstein, Miskolc 1963
1.c4 f5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.g3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.O-O O-O 6.d4 d6 7.Nc3 c6 8.Qc2 Kh8 9.b3 Na6 10.Bb2 Nc7 11.Rad1 Bd7 12.e3 Qe8 13.Rfe1 Rd8 14.Rd2 Nh5 15.d5 Qf7 16.dxc6 bxc6 17.Ne2 c5 18.Nf4 Nf6 19.Ng5 Qg8 20.Bc3 Rde8 21.Ba5 Ne6 22.Ngxe6 Bxe6 23.Nxe6 Qxe6 24.Qd3 Ne4 25.Qd5 Qxd5 26.Rxd5 Bc3 27.Bxc3+ Nxc3 28.Rd2 Ne4 29.Rb2 a5 30.f3 Nf6 31.Kf2 Rb8 32.Ke2 Rb6 33.Kd3 e5 34.f4 e4+ 35.Kc3 Kg7 36.Bf1 h5 37.h4 Rfb8 38.Be2 a4 39.Reb1 a3 40.Rd2 Kf7 41.Rbd1 Ke7 42.Rd5 Ne8 43.R1d2 Nc7 44.Bd1 Na6 45.Bc2 Nb4 46.Bb1 Ra6 47.Rd1 Nxd5+ 48.Rxd5 Rxb3+ 49.Kxb3 Rb6+ 50.Kc2 Rb2+ 51.Kc1 Re2 52.Rd1 Rxe3 53.Rg1 Rc3+ 54.Kd2 Rxc4 55.Bc2 d5 56.Rb1 d4 57.Bd1 Rc3 58.Rb3 e3+ 59.Ke2 Rc1 60.Rxa3 c4 61.Ra7+ Kd6 62.Ba4 Rh1 63.Rd7+ Kc5 64.Rc7+ Kb4 65.a3+ Kc3 66.Bb5 Rh2+ 67.Kf1 d3 68.Rxc4+ Kb2 69.Kg1 e2 70.Kxh2 e1Q and White resigned

3.         23...Qg3
Levitzky - Marshall, Breslau 1912
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 c5 4.Nf3 Nc6 5.exd5 exd5 6.Be2 Nf6 7.O-O Be7 8.Bg5 O-O 9.dxc5 Be6 10.Nd4 Bxc5 11.Nxe6 fxe6 12.Bg4 Qd6 13.Bh3 Rae8 14.Qd2 Bb4 15.Bxf6 Rxf6 16.Rad1 Qc5 17.Qe2 Bxc3 18.bxc3 Qxc3 19.Rxd5 Nd4 20.Qh5 Ref8 21.Re5 Rh6 22.Qg5 Rxh3 23.Rc5 Qg3 and White resigned

2.        47...Bh3
Topalov - Shirov, Linares 1998
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Bb5+ c6 8.Ba4 O-O 9.Ne2 Nd7 10.O-O e5 11.f3 Qe7 12.Be3 Rd8 13.Qc2 Nb6 14.Bb3 Be6 15.Rad1 Nc4 16.Bc1 b5 17.f4 exd4 18.Nxd4 Bg4 19.Rde1 Qc5 20.Kh1 a5 21.h3 Bd7 22.a4 bxa4 23.Ba2 Be8 24.e5 Nb6 25.f5 Nd5 26.Bd2 Nb4 27.Qxa4 Nxa2 28.Qxa2 Bxe5 29.fxg6 hxg6 30.Bg5 Rd5 31.Re3 Qd6 32.Qe2 Bd7 33.c4 Bxd4 34.cxd5 Bxe3 35.Qxe3 Re8 36.Qc3 Qxd5 37.Bh6 Re5 38.Rf3 Qc5 39.Qa1 Bf5 40.Re3 f6 41.Rxe5 Qxe5 42.Qa2+ Qd5 43.Qxd5+ cxd5 44.Bd2 a4 45.Bc3 Kf7 46.h4 Ke6 47.Kg1 Bh3 48.gxh3 Kf5 49.Kf2 Ke4 50.Bxf6 d4 51.Be7 Kd3 52.Bc5 Kc4 53.Be7 Kb3 and White resigned

1:         16...Nc6
Averbakh - Spassky, Leningrad 1956
1.c4 Nf6 2.Nc3 g6 3.e4 d6 4.d4 Bg7 5.Be2 O-O 6.Bg5 c5 7.d5 Qa5 8.Bd2 a6 9.a4 e5 10.g4 Ne8 11.h4 f5 12.h5 f4 13.g5 Qd8 14.Bg4 Nc7 15.Bxc8 Qxc8 16.Nf3 Nc6 (About his #1 greatest move, Spassky wrote to me: I have played 16...Nc6 because I did not see any other practical resources because my position was so passive. I was very surprised that Yuri Averbakh was thinking about 1 hour (!!) (55 min.) I considered that after 17.dxc6 bxc6 18.h6! Bh8 White would have two pieces up and they could manage the win very easy. Mark Taimanov: "I would rather resign the game than to make such a move...") 17.dxc6 bxc6 18.Nh4 Qe8 19.hxg6 hxg6 20.Qg4 Rb8 21.Nd1 Ne6 22.Ra3 Nd4 23.Rah3 Qf7 24.Bc3 Rfe8 25.R3h2 Qxc4 26.Nxg6 Re6 27.Bxd4 Rxg6 28.Qf5 Qe6 29.Qxe6+ Rxe6 30.Bc3 d5 31.f3 Rb3 32.Rh3 c4 33.Kd2 Rg6 34.Rg1 d4 35.Ba5 Bf8 36.Rg4 Rd6 37.Kc2 Rd7 38.g6 Rdb7 39.Be1 c5 40.Rgh4 Bg7 41.Ba5 c3 42.bxc3 Ra3 43.cxd4 exd4 44.Rxf4 Ra2+ 45.Kd3 Rb1 46.Rh1 Rxa4 47.Kc2 Rb5 48.e5 d3+ 49.Kxd3 Rxf4 50.Bc3 Rxf3+ 51.Ke4 Rg3 52.Kf4 Rxg6 53.Ne3 Rb8 54.Nf5 Rf8 55.Rh5 Re8 56.Ke4 Rg1 57.Rh3 Bf8 58.Kd5 Rd1+ 59.Ke4 Rc1 60.Kd5 Rd1+ 61.Ke4 Rd7 62.Nh6+ Bxh6 63.Rxh6 Rh7 64.Rg6+ Kf7 65.Rf6+ Ke7 66.Rc6 Kd7 67.Rxc5 Rh6 68.Kd5 Rb6 69.Ba5 Rb5 70.Rxb5 axb5 71.e6+ Rxe6 72.Kc5 Re5+ 73.Kb6 draw

Earlier installments:
110-101 | 100-91 | 90-81 | 80-71 | 70-61 | 60-51 | 50-41 | 40-31 | 30-21 | 20-11

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