Daniel King’s Power Play Show: Spassky attacks

by Daniel King
7/10/2020 – In this Power Play Show, grandmaster Daniel King focuses on an exciting attacking game played by tenth world champion Boris Spassky when he was merely 18 years old. He also looks at a mate-in-three problem that even had him confused for a while! | Power Play is on air most Fridays at 17:00 UK (18:00 CEST, 11:00 EST) on playchess.com. All the usual puzzles, games and instruction will be on offer.

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Classical chess at its finest

A fine problem to start. White to play and mate in three moves. I don’t mind admitting that this position had me confused for some time - in spite of its simplicity. That is why I like it a lot: there are some beautiful checkmating ideas that are revealed in the solution. You will need to find the best defences for Black to rule out possible alternatives.


Spassky, the prodigy

Boris SpasskyThe main focus of the show is a wonderful attacking game that was played by Boris Spassky in the Soviet Championship in 1955 when he was just a teenager. Classical chess at its finest.

Spassky was a classical child prodigy and gained nation-wide attention by beating the Soviet Champion Mikhail Botvinnik in a simultaneous exhibition in 1947, at the age of ten. At 16 he played successfully in a strong international tournament in Bucharest, Romania, and at 18 he won the World Junior Chess Championship in Antwerp, Belgium. The GM title was awarded to him that year, which was a record at the time. In 1956 he qualified for the Candidates Tournament for the first time, in Amsterdam, and finished in the middle of the ten-player world-class field. He was just 19 at the time.

This week

Previous shows

You'll find older broadcasts in the Power Play category. To watch these you'll need a ChessBase Premium Account.

Daniel King is the prolific author of the PowerPlay series which numbers 27 volumes to date.  The King's Gambit is the subject of his most recent DVD.

Here’s a teaser:

Power Play 27: The King's Gambit

Glorious sacrifices, unexpected tactics and checkmating attacks. The King's Gambit is one of the oldest and most romantic openings in the game of chess. This DVD contains all you need to know to tackle your opponent.


Daniel King is a regular on playchess.com. Commentating on live events such as the World Championship or analysing themes for his monthly Power Play Show. He also produces a DVD series called Power Play for ChessBase in the Fritztrainer format.


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