Shirov vs Polgar: Stomping The Sicilian Defense – Tilburg 1996 – My Best Games – Vol 4

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Shirov opens with 1. e4 and Judit Polgar responds with the Sicilian Defense, apparently aiming for the Najdorf Variation with 5. …a6. With 6. Be2, it seems that Shirov is intending a quieter, more positional line with the Opocensky Variation. However, Polgar plays 6. …e6 – moving away from the Najdorf and towards the Scheveningen Variation. Play continues normally until Shirov lashes out on the kingside with 10. g4!? – playing for a rapid pawn storm on the kingside before black is able to complete development and achieve counterplay in the center. With 12. g5, white pushes black’s knight back – and with 13. Nxe6!?! Shirov forces the game into extreme complications, sacrificing a knight to seize a dangerous initiative against black’s king. Shirov’s blatant disregard for material is on full display in this brilliant attacking game as he continues with another dazzling piece sacrifice on 16. Nd5!! – forcing open more lines to attack black’s exposed king and exploit black’s lack of development and coordination. Judit Polgar attempts to defend actively, however the storm of aggression that Shirov created early in the opening transforms into a devastating middlegame attack – leading to Polgar’s resignation in a hopeless position after 30. Qf1+

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