Malcolm Pein on…Remembering Dvoretsky
The Mark Dvoretsky Memorial took place in Moscow last month to celebrate the life of the legendary Russian trainer.
Mark Dvoretsky (1947-2016) was at one time known as the strongest IM in the world. In 1974 he was good enough to tie for fifth in the super-strong USSR Championship before winning the B tournament at Wijk aan Zee the next year. Remarkably, such results neither led to Dvoretsky becoming a grandmaster nor continuing as a professional player.
Instead, Dvoretsky quickly established himself as one of the leading Soviet chess trainers and, by the end of communism, was widely regarded as the world’s premier chess trainer. His most famous pupil was Artur Yusupov, who won the world junior championship, then thrice reached the semifinal stage of the Candidates, attributing much of his success to Dvoretsky with whom he would later write a number of acclaimed books.
A two-day rapid event attracted 10 of the great man’s pupils. Boris Grachev edged out Ernesto Inarkiev on tie-break after the two finished on 6.5/9.
Played in Dvoretsky’s Honor
B. Grachev – M. Kobalia
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 c6 4.e3 a6 5.Nbd2 Bf5 6.Nh4!? Be6 (6…Be4 7.f3 Bg6 is solid enough for Black) 7.Be2 g6 8.0-0 Bg7 9.b3 0-0 10.Bb2 Ne4 11.Nhf3 (Dvoretsky would have approved. White improves his worst-placed piece and enjoys a pleasant edge. Black now switches to a Stonewall formation, but still fails to obtain any real counterplay) 11…f5 12.Rc1 Kh8 13.Ne5 Nd7 14.Nd3!
Further fine positional play from the Dvoretsky school. Exchanges would help to free Black’s position, whereas now White’s knights are bound for f4 and f3. 14…a5 15.a4 Qb6?! (15…Nxd2 16.Qxd2 Bf7 or 15…g5!? was a better try) 16.Nf4 Bg8 17.cxd5 cxd5 18.Bb5! (White occupies the hole Black has created) 18…Nb8 19.Ba3 Nd6?! 20.Rc5! Ne4? 21.Nxe4! (Simple chess, opening lines to favour White’s more active pieces) 21…dxe4 22.Bc4 Nc6 23.Bxg8 Rxg8 24.Ne6 Bf6 25.Rb5 Qa7 26.d5 Nd8 Black has been totally outplayed, but what coup de grâce quickly forced his resignation?
Test Your Strength
Highlight the space below this line to reveal the answer.
27.Bxe7! Nxe6 (27…Bxe7? 28.Qa1+ mates) 28.Bxf6+ Ng7 29.d6 1-0