Rubber Match of the World S&P championship,

 February 22,2010. 

 Annotated by Victor Niederhoffer

The match between Bullstein and Bearivitch stood tied at 15 games each. After pulling away in the first part of the match, Bullstein fell behind 15 to 9 but with an amazing comeback so typical of him when apparently in the cellar, he pulled 6 winning rabbits out of the hat in a row to tie the score. However, in the game of Friday, Feb 19, time pressures almost overtook him, and after technical analysis showed a clear win with just one hour to go on the clock, he lost 5 pawns in a row and was left with two passed pawns against two castles. He almost allowed Bearavitch to pull out a draw when he attempted to sacrifice his two castles for the pawns. Apparently Bull didn't know whether to play for the win or just to go home quietly and settle for the draw.

1. 1106 to 1108

Bull starts with a traditional but risky opening advancing two squares up the middle. As Lasker says, "The squares in the center are the most important. And the first one to control these squares is usually the winner". As is well known, whoever wins the starting jump ball in basketball wins 58% of the Elo rated games in master play, and the same is true for markets. Moves of this nature are often vulnerable, however to a swarming attack when not supported by the junior officers, and Bear slipped through the broken lines in the rear bringing out his heavy ammunition right at the start. Contrast this with the approach favored by Bronstein and many prudent market players where their first order of business is to move their chips to the safety of the corner protecting it from loss with their junior officers

                                                                                                1….. 1108 to 1104.

Bear moves rite into the breach, apparently going for the k squares at 1100 but Bull had anticipated this, having done some cross practice at squash in the morning on the capital courts. The black squares at k 1100 have and will be the locus of many a battle between these two giants .

2.1104 to 1106.

Bull was content to hold his fire, staying the course until he can bring up the reserves to fire at the enemy's officers later in the day. He allowed much time to elapse on the clock until 1 pm hoping that he could gain sustenance from the well known fact that Vitch is vulnerable during cold days and with oil breaking the round at 80, he knew he held the initiatives. 

                                                                                                2. 1106 to 1107    

3.1107 to 1106

                                                                                               3. 1106 to 1107

As is so often the case these quiet moves mark the calm before the storm as both players jockey for position in the end game, and gather their forces and marshall their troops. Let us not forget however, as the players never do that the spectators must see fireworks at the end or else they will not pay to see or play in the next game themselves.

4. 1107 to 1110

Bull presses the advantage from the strength in oil and waits for the reinforcements and fluidity that the acquisitions in the oil and equipment field, ( einforcements that he was alerted to before the start of the game by his seconds and trainers) will provide. …..

                                                                                               4. 1110 to 1105

Throwing all his forces into the game, in a do or die attack on Bull's vulnerable remaining chips, Vitch moves to a pawn ahead in a theoretically drawish end game. Technical analysis or no after six losses in a row, he is no mood for to go down for a seventh time in succession when he has any ammunition left.

5. 1105 to 1107

With just 15 minutes to go on the time clock. Bull comes back to eke out a win at 1107 after distracting Vitch with some double entendres about "once being enough " and no fears of tightening in the near future.

"I was so distracted by all that sexy talk, that I forgot to cover my vulnerable spots at the end " Vitch told a certain reporter after the game.

While one can fear remorse for Vitch's seventh loss in a row, it would be wrong to count him out as urged on by his supporters in the media, who always crave a red win, he is double dangerous when recovering from a hair's breadth loss.

Alan Millhone comments:

I see the peaks on the chart as controlling squares 14 and 19. Difficult to do on a regular basis.


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