Sunday, May 06, 2007

Stairway to Heaven



Polugayevsky-Torre, Moscow 1981. White to play his 18th move.

It's one of my favourite chess positions of all time. And for a Sunday, that's all I want to say.

7 comments:

Tom Chivers said...

1.f4 isn't it, entombing the h8 rook?

ejh said...

Anybody recall the wall poster in the music shop in Wayne's World? "No Stairway To Heaven".

Tom Chivers said...

Now that'd be a good pub quiz question.

Jonathan B said...

That's right Tom

f4 is the move White is about to play - it (and a whole bunch of moves more) had all been prepared in advance by Polu

Tom Chivers said...

In the Burgess, Nunn & Emms book "The Mammoth Book of The World's Greatest Chess Games", 18.f4 is annotated as '!!' But I don't see an obvious alternative for white. The imprisonment concept is clearly implied and instigated by 17.h4!! - genuinely an excellently excellent move - whereas white had instead the materialistic alternative pxb on move 17. But I see no real alternative on move 18, that would justify the double exclamation marks.

Or am I missing something?

Jonathan B said...

Perhaps B&N were just copying Polu's own annotations. He gave himself a "!!" for both 17. h4 and 18. f4.

Maybe he thought the whole concept was worth 4 !s

ejh said...

I usually award my moves a few *#@*s.