Friday, November 28, 2008

How good is your copying?

Remember How Good Is Your Chess? "Enjoy a fine game and the notes", was the phrase.

So here's a fine game with some interesting notes. There are questions, too - but only at the end of the game. Each set of notes is numbered, to assist you with answering those questions when you get to them.

Rudolf Spielmann - Aron Nimzowitsch, Stockholm 1920

1.e4 Nc6 2.d4 d5
(1.) The pure, Nimzowitschian interpretation of this defence which normally leads to intricate pawn-chain play.
(2.) One might have expected the more fluid 3.Nc3 from Spielmann.
(3.) An even more provocative method of handling this provocative defence is 3...f6.
(4.) Better is 4.Nf3!?. The plan chosen by White diverts too many pieces from the protection of his centre (d4) and could have have boomeranged seriously had Black played correctly on move 7.
4...e6 5.Ng3 Bg6 6.h4 h5 7.Be2 Be7
(5.) Inviting remarkable complications. Instead of this flank defence to White's pressure against his h-pawn it was possible to obtain a fine position by means of a central counter-attack, as suggested later by Nimzowitsch: thus 7...Nb4! 8.Na3 c5 9.c3 Nc6 10.Nxh5 Bxh5 11.Bxh5 cxd4 12.cxd4 Bb4+ 13.Kf1 Bxa3 14.bxa3 g6 15.Be2 Rxh4 16.Rxh4 Qxh4 threatening mate and the d-pawn.
8.Bxh5 Bxh5 9.Nxh5 g6 10.Nf4 Rxh4 11.Rxh4 Bxh4 12.Qd3 Nge7!!
(6.) Surely Black must now lose material?

(7.) 13...Bg5 would lose to the old trap 14.Nxe6, so the text is forced. The remarkable move, then, was Black's 12th which prepared this combination. White could decline Black's 'passive' sacrifice with 14.c3, allowing ...Bg5 at last, but why should he? Is it obvious that Black obtains anything concrete for his sacrificed piece?
14.gxh4 Nfxd4
(8.) The compensation to date amounts to one pawn, but more is to come, since the foundations of White's pawn centre have been destroyed. The threats at the moment (positively crude in comparison with the enchanting variations based on the power of his centralised knight pair which Nimzowitsch soon conjures up) are 15...Nb4 16.Qxd4 Nxc2+ and 15...Nxe5 16.Qxe5 Nf3+.
15.Na3 Qxh4
(9.) Rejecting the possibility of entering an endgame where he would possess three pawns for a piece. This possibility arises after 15...Nxe5 16.Qh3 Ndf3+ 17.Kf1 Qxh4. In this case it would certainly be Black who would be justified in playing for a win. However, Nimzowitsch had observed a variation of shattering beauty.
16.Qh3 Qg5 17.Be3? Qg1+ 18.Qf1
(10.) Or 18.Qd2 Qxa1 19.Qh8+ Kd7 20.Qxa8 Qxb2! winning.
18...Nf3+ 19.Ke2 Nfd4+ 20.Kd2 Ncd4+
(11.) No draw.
(12.) The losing error. It was essential to eliminate one of the knights with the capture 22.Bxd4. Admittedly the continuation 22...Nxd4+ 23.Kd3 Qg5 24.Kxd4 Qxf4+ 25.Kd3 c5 is unpleasant for White, but it was obligatory to continue thus if White wanted to resist.
22...Qg5 23.Qh3 Qxe5 24.Rf1 O-O-O

(13.) Now that Black has completed his development White is helpless. This position should be preserved for the benefit of posterity.
25.b3 b5 26.Nxb5 Qe4+ 27.Kc3 Qxc2+ 28.Kb4 c5+ 0-1

Did you enjoy that? I bet Nimzowitsch did. Now, the questions.

The notes have been numbered (1) to (13). Your task is to identify the origin of each set of notes.

Do they come from:

(a) Aron Nimzowitsch, Master of Planning? (Keene, Batsford, 1991.)

or ;

(b) A Complete Defence for Black? (Keene and Jacobs, Batsford, 1996.)

(Note that the earlier of these books used descriptive notation: it has been translated into algebraic.)

(Ray Keene index)


Will said...


ejh said...


Anonymous said...

Almost both?



ejh said...

Among the tiny differences:

(7) "old trap" in the Nimzowitsch book, but just "trap" in the Keene/Jacobs effort.

(8) "The compensation to date" is "So far the compensation" in the earlier book, which also numbers the two variations (i) and (ii).

(9) "This possibility arises after" does not appear in Nimzowitsch.

(13) In Nimzowitsch, "benefit of posterity" is "benefit of posterity with a" and there folows the symbol for a diagram.