Share this story
Close X
Switch to Desktop Site

Another Soviet 'emigr'e player starts making a mark in US play

While world champion Gary Kasparov and former world titlist Anatoly Karpov are slugging it out in London (Kasparov leads their 24-game rematch 4-3), longtime Soviet dissident Boris Gulko has just concluded play in the US Open, his first tournament on United States soil. The 39-year-old grandmaster has finally been allowed to emigrate along with his wife, Anna Akhsharumova, one of the world's finest women chess players. Gulko played well, especially considering the distractions of coming to a strange country. He won 7 games, drew 4, and lost only 1 for a 9-3 score, good for a tie for eighth place (Larry Christiansen was the clear winner at 10-2, with six players sharing runner-up honors at 9-2). Ironically, Gulko's only loss was to US champion Lev Alburt, a fellow Soviet 'emigr'e and one of the couple's strongest supporters during its emigration ordeal.

Though the Gulkos exited via the Israeli conduit, they will probably eventually settle in the US, where both will be welcome additions to our chess world.

About these ads

Boris's sharp attacking play and overall technique are demonstrated in the following outstanding game played last year in Frunze, Soviet Union, against women's world champion Maya Chiburdanidze. The fighting game featuring spine-tingling complications does credit to the loser as well as the winner. Queen's Gambit Declined Gulko Chiburdanidze 1. P-Q4 N-KB3 2. P-QB4 P-K3 3. N-QB3 P-Q4 4. PxP PxP 5. B-N5 B-K2 6. P-K3 O-O 7. B-Q3 QN-Q2 8. KN-K2 (a) P-QN3 9. N-N3 P-N3 10. P-KR4 P-B4 11. Q-B2 (b) R-K1 12. O-O-O P-B5 13. B-K2 P-QR3 14. B-B3 B-N2 15. P-R5 N-K5 16. PxP RPxP (c) 17. BxN PxB 18. B-B4 R-QB1 19. N/NxP N-B1 20. P-KN4 P-KN4 (d) 21. B-K5 P-B3 22. P-B4! BxN 23. NxB PxB 24. QPxP (e) Q-Q6 (f) 25. Q-R2 QxP ch 26. R-Q2 P-B6 (g) 27. Q-R8 ch K-B2 28. P-K6 ch KxP 29. Q-N8 mate

A. Leading to a more exciting game than the prosaic alternative 8. N-B3, which usually presages a minority attack on the Q-side with 9. O-O, then P-QN4 and P-QN5.

B. Safety first. Premature is 11. P-R5, BPxP; 12. KPxP, NxP, when Black wins a pawn and can beat back the attack.

C. White wins after 16. . . . NxB; 17 PxBP ch, KxP; 18. RxP ch, NxR; 19. QxN ch, K-K3; 20. Q-B5 ch, K-Q3; 21. Q-B4 ch, K-B3 ((or 21. . . . K-K3; 22. B-N4 mate)); 22. BxP mate, or 16. . . . BxB; 17. PxBPch, KxP; 18. RxP ch, K-N1; N/BxN, PxN; QxPch, KxR; Q-B7ch, K-R1; R-R1ch, B-R5; 23. N-B5 wins.

D. Else White scores with 21. P-N5 and 22. B-K5.

E. White's only fall from grace in an otherwise beautifully conducted attack. It is likely he overlooked Black's surprising reply or he would have concluded with 24. BPxKP, followed by 25. Q-R2 and 26. QR-KB1, leaving Black with no viable defense.

F. A beautiful resource which might well have saved the game. Now 25. RxQ, PxR recaptures the queen.

About these ads

G. The possible complications are enormous, but it seems that Black could salvage a draw in the amazing variation 26. . . . QxP; 27. Q-R8 ch, K-B2; 28. P-K6 ch, NxP; 29. R-R7 ch, K-N3; 30. R-R6 ch, K-B2; 31. Q-R7 ch, N-N2 ((31 . . . K-B1; 32. R-N6 wins)); 32 Q-N6 ch, K-N1; 33. R-R7, B-B1; 34. NxP, QxR ch!; 35. KxQ, R/B-Q1 ch; 36. K-B3, R-K6 ch; 37. K-B2 (not (not 37. KxP, P-N4 mate)); 37. . . . R-K7 ch with perpetual check.