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Alekhine-Euwe 1937 Euwe vs Alekhine 1937
The Netherlands

Alexander Alekhine challenged Max Euwe to a rematch, and Euwe agreed to the challenge and the conditions. From October to December in 1937 the match was conducted, again in the Netherlands. If Alekhine had made the mistake of underestimating Euwe in 1935, he certainly did not underestimate him this time. Euwe won the first game with the white pieces, but in the end Alekhine's resolve (perhaps fueled by the 1935 defeat) proved to be too much for the Dutch Champion. After 25 games, with a score of +10 -4 =11, Alekhine gained the title for the second time.

After the match, Euwe wrote of his opponent with great admiration:

Alekhine's perfect technique and combinative talent are so well known that it is unnecessary to talk about them. His conduct of the endgame was shining. Even so, I admire most how he finished the adjourned games. I had to analyze them, too, so I know them well. When I think of how my opponent created ingenious ideas and how he finished them in unexpected ways, I have only the greatest admiration for Alekhine's playing style.[1]
This was Alekhine's final title match. He held the title of World Chess Champion until his death in 1946.

click on a game number to replay game 1234567891011121314151617181920
Alekhine01½½0111½1½½01½½0½½½
Euwe10½½1000½0½½10½½1½½½

click on a game number to replay game 2122232425
Alekhine11½11
Euwe00½00

FINAL SCORE:  Alekhine 15½;  Euwe 9½
Reference: game collection WCC Index [Euwe-Alekhine 1937]

NOTABLE GAMES   [what is this?]
    · Game #6     Alekhine vs Euwe, 1937     1-0
    · Game #22     Alekhine vs Euwe, 1937     1-0
    · Game #2     Alekhine vs Euwe, 1937     1-0

FOOTNOTES

  1. World Chess Championship Index by Mark Weeks

 page 1 of 1; games 1-25 of 25  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Euwe vs Alekhine 1-0501937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD17 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
2. Alekhine vs Euwe 1-0411937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD17 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
3. Euwe vs Alekhine ½-½601937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD46 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
4. Alekhine vs Euwe ½-½271937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD17 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
5. Euwe vs Alekhine 1-0411937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD28 Queen's Gambit Accepted, Classical
6. Alekhine vs Euwe 1-0231937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD10 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
7. Euwe vs Alekhine 0-1341937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD18 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Dutch
8. Alekhine vs Euwe 1-0261937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchE34 Nimzo-Indian, Classical, Noa Variation
9. Euwe vs Alekhine ½-½411937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD19 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Dutch
10. Alekhine vs Euwe 1-0401937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchE34 Nimzo-Indian, Classical, Noa Variation
11. Euwe vs Alekhine ½-½301937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD17 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
12. Alekhine vs Euwe ½-½261937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchE34 Nimzo-Indian, Classical, Noa Variation
13. Euwe vs Alekhine 1-0681937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD18 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Dutch
14. Alekhine vs Euwe 1-0521937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchE00 Queen's Pawn Game
15. Euwe vs Alekhine ½-½621937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD19 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Dutch
16. Alekhine vs Euwe ½-½651937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchE02 Catalan, Open, 5.Qa4
17. Euwe vs Alekhine 1-0411937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD19 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Dutch
18. Alekhine vs Euwe ½-½511937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD41 Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch
19. Euwe vs Alekhine ½-½491937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchE21 Nimzo-Indian, Three Knights
20. Alekhine vs Euwe ½-½411937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchE34 Nimzo-Indian, Classical, Noa Variation
21. Euwe vs Alekhine 0-1321937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchE16 Queen's Indian
22. Alekhine vs Euwe 1-0621937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchA09 Reti Opening
23. Euwe vs Alekhine ½-½501937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchE17 Queen's Indian
24. Alekhine vs Euwe 1-0411937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchD40 Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch
25. Euwe vs Alekhine 0-1431937Euwe - Alekhine World Championship RematchE46 Nimzo-Indian
 page 1 of 1; games 1-25 of 25  PGN Download
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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 5 OF 5 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jan-09-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  Lambda: <The guy never won a match straight up.>

Except in 1958 and 1961. (Unless you mean "the first time he played a match against that player" somehow, though I've never heard "straight up" being used to describe that.)

And in 1948, where he had a positive score against every other competitor in the tournament, which is kind of like winning four minimatches. Chess was quite lucky Botvinnik was so incredibly strong in the 1940s, and was able to win that tournament so convincingly that nobody could seriously doubt his status as world champion.

He was less strong in the 1950s, when he was the "first amongst equals" champion, proving approximately equal to his closest competitors. Unfortunately for him, his best decade coincided with WWII and its aftermath.

Jan-09-18  GT3RS: <Petrosianic>

I see you’ve ignored most of my points and gone off track spewing unnecessary drivel. Absolute last post as I can’t stand your stupidity.

<Fischer lost a short match to Euwe in 1956, and your argument showed a lack of understanding about the passage of time (In arguing that Euwe didn't deserve to be champion in 1935 because he lost a match to Bogo in 1928). But in the more extreme case of Fischer and Euwe, even you can see the time factor, can't you?>

Where did I explicitly state that Euwe didn’t deserve to be champion just because he lost to Bogo in 1928? You couldn’t be this stupid or are you?

Fischer didn’t lose a “short match” to Euwe. He lost a “game”. They played two more games later (draw and a win for Fischer). It’s fine though. I’ll give you a pass here.

And unlike Euwe, Fischer demolished 3 GMs in a “match” to get to Spassky. He then won the “match” decisively.

<You've forgotten your own argument. You said the challenger had no business challenging at all if he didn't qualify for the title match. You didn't say that was a special rule that applied only to one person. I wouldn't call that stupid of you, but it was very careless.>

I haven’t forgotten anything, but you sure have found a way to go off track with my comments. Again- Where the F did I explicitly state that he needed to qualify for the title match?

I said Euwe barely beat a drunk Alekhine and that idea was confirmed when he got destroyed in the return match. Since Euwe’s WC match wasn’t decisive against a drunk Alekhine, his achievements (records, opponents etc) were mentioned as an additional criteria to compare him to other champions. Overall you can make a case that Euwe is arguably the weakest champion.

In alternate scenario IF:

1. Euwe beat Alekhine decisively in the first match.

2. Euwe didn't lose by a significant margin in the 2nd match.

3. Euwe retained the title.

If he had done any 1 of the above it would be a different story.

<Um, that's precisely what an excuse is. "So and so lost but it doesn't really count because asn't just one bad event that Alekhine had. I see that you've given a little thought to this part, but don't have a grasp of how the same players can have different results with each other. Out of curiosity, do you feel Botvinnik was drunk in 1957, or that Smyslov was drunk in 1958? (Or both!)>

It’s well known that Alekhine was an alcohol addict. He was found drunk in a field prior to his World CH match in 1935. He quit drinking, got serious and demolished Euwe in the return match. Confirmed.

Tournament play and match play are different. Geller (a great GM) has equal and + score against many WC, but he was terrible in match play which is why he never became the WC.

<Nope. When you advance to the C Player's Guide, you'll find that pretty much everyone was gung ho on the tournament idea at the time, as it allowed more people to challenge for the title. . And the idea that Bo afraid of a guy in his late 40's, 10 years his senior,earlier, is just nutty. Mind Reading arguments are the last refuge of the scoundrel.>

Haha. Clearly you ignored my post. That’s ok. I’ll re quote myself for the final time:

After Alekhine died the mantle of WC should have been passed to Euwe (many believed, following the historical tradition) and Euwe should have met the #2 in a match for the title. However, at that time Botvinnik did not have a good record against Euwe and did NOT want to face him in a match. Euwe-Botvinik score pre-war games was +2=3.

It was difficult for me to play against him: I found it hard to understand his play,' Botvinnik admitted. He would skilfully change the situation on the board, and would make kind of "long" moves (I would overlook them). At the first opportunity he would begin a swift offensive, he calculated variations accurately and he had made a deep study of the endgame.

Even Kasparov stated it in his book. You clearly don’t know anything about chess history. Especially about Botvinik's influence / Soviet cheating. Stop it breh.

<Perfectly. You're saying my statement is wrong in ways you can't explain. And that is the point of this whole exercise. You can't explain yourself properly because you don't really know the facts very well, did little research, haven't given much thought to the issue, double down on mistakes when called on them, to the point of forgetting your own arguments, use a lot of bluster to deflect from your errors, and you seem to be motivated primarily by some juvenile need to trash talk players much better than yourself.>

Not gonna take the bait. Sorry. :)

Do keep up the bad work.

Jan-09-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: <I've never heard "straight up" being used to describe that.)>

I took it as meaning "never defeated a challenger", although you're right, it's a weird way to phrase it, basically throwing out two strong match wins as irrelevant, and I might be giving him too much credit.

<Chess was quite lucky Botvinnik was so incredibly strong in the 1940s, and was able to win that tournament so convincingly that nobody could seriously doubt his status as world champion.>

Botvinnik was super-strong in the 40's, but only First Among Equals in the 50's, as you say. We seem to have established that GT3RS has no grasp of time, and so seems to have chopped the facts to make Botvinnik look <weaker> by virtue of holding the title longer, which is hilariously counter-intuitive. It makes you wonder how different history would be if Alekhine had survived to play that last match. The entire Candidates system that we knew might never have existed.

<Unfortunately for him, his best decade coincided with WWII and its aftermath.>

That may possibly have shaved several years off Capablanca's reign as well. Or who knows? Without WWI, Lasker might have played Capa earlier and beat him.

Jan-09-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  Stonehenge: A minor detail: Fischer, Capablanca and Alekhine were professional chess players when they became world champion. Euwe wasn't.
Jan-09-18  beatgiant: Out of curiosity, and at the risk of going slightly off-topic, what exactly were those two Fischer-Euwe games in 1957? An exhibition match?
Jan-09-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <It’s well known that Alekhine was an alcohol addict. He was found drunk in a field prior to his World CH match in 1935. He quit drinking, got serious and demolished Euwe in the return match. Confirmed.>

No, it's not. There are claims that his drinking was out of control, unsubtantiated stories like the one you mention above, and counterclaims that alcohol wasn't such a problem for him. Nobody seems to know for sure.

<After Alekhine died the mantle of WC should have been passed to Euwe (many believed, following the historical tradition) and Euwe should have met the #2 in a match for the title. However, at that time Botvinnik did not have a good record against Euwe and did NOT want to face him in a match. Euwe-Botvinik score pre-war games was +2=3.>

I'm sure Petrosianic knows way more about the 1948 championship than you do, since he's written a lot about it, citing contemporaneous sources, which you have not done. Since no one had ever died while holding the title, there was no "historical tradition" either way concerning Euwe's status.

I don't remember how much thought was given to a Botvinnik-Euwe match, but I suspect not much. Given Euwe's performance in the 1948 match-tournament, there's no reason to suppose he was of world championship caliber at the time.

Jan-09-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: <beatgiant> <What exactly were those two Fischer-Euwe games in 1957? An exhibition match?>

Yeah, basically an exhibition. Euwe was in town and Fischer was a promising young prodigy, so someone got them together. Euwe won the first game and gave a draw in a superior position in the second one.

It was funny. The first game was published and annotated, but not the second. You'd think it would be huge news that this 13 year old prodigy had drawn a game with an ex-world champion, but the moves were never published, in either Chess Life or Chess Review, only the result, and the game was considered lost for years. It turned up a couple of years ago, and it's not that bad. Fischer isn't blatantly crushed or busted, or anything, but I guess they didn't want people analyzing it and concluding that he should have lost.

Jan-09-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: <I don't remember how much thought was given to a Botvinnik-Euwe match, but I suspect not much.>

Not much, although the idea was floated of naming him as interim World Champion until an actual event could be held. I believe that he may even have been named World Champion for about a half hour or so before they reversed it. (Not positive about that, however).

Jan-09-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: http://www.chesshistory.com/winter/...

Winter's article on the road to the match-tournament. As far as the subject under discussion is concerned, Znosko-Borovsky wrote an article arguing that Euwe should be restored to the title and he should then play a match with Botvinnik, but FIDE seems to have never seriously considered the idea.

Jan-09-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: There's a certain logic (and precedent) for giving Euwe the title. Not so much for giving Botvinnik the title <shot>. Yes, he had an arrangement with Alekhine to play a title match, but that was between Botvinnik and Alekhine, not Botvinnik and FIDE. There were lots of other credible challengers, and simply handing the title shot to one of them because that's what Alekhine did doesn't make much sense. (Especially considering how badly out of favor Alekhine was at the time over his wartime activities).
Jan-09-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: I wonder how long Salo Flohr remained FIDE's "Official Challenger"? They must have rescinded it at some point, unless they just forgot about it.
Jan-10-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  Lambda: <That may possibly have shaved several years off Capablanca's reign as well. Or who knows? Without WWI, Lasker might have played Capa earlier and beat him.>

Yes. Without WWI, Capablanca might have had five odd years more as champion, or alternatively, might never have become champion (since you can easily imagine Lasker going into semi-retirement for several years after winning a match). I have absolutely no idea who would have won a match taking place in around 1916, but I really wish it had happened.

Jan-10-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: < Lambda: <That may possibly have shaved several years off Capablanca's reign as well. Or who knows? Without WWI, Lasker might have played Capa earlier and beat him.> Yes. Without WWI, Capablanca might have had five odd years more as champion, or alternatively, might never have become champion (since you can easily imagine Lasker going into semi-retirement for several years after winning a match). I have absolutely no idea who would have won a match taking place in around 1916, but I really wish it had happened.>

Me too, especially if it occurred as a corollary of World War I not taking place. Now that's a two-fer!

Jan-10-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  WorstPlayerEver: They don't make history like that no more ;)
Jan-11-18  Howard: As far as any allegations of Flohr being an "official challenger" for the WC, his dead-last finish at AVRO probably torpedoed that notion for good.
Jan-11-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: FIDE, not Flohr, was the official challenger for the WC, but Alekhine's victory in 1937 match torpedoed that notion for good, well, 9 years.
Jan-11-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: No, Flohr was still "Official Challenger" after AVRO. Not sure for how long, though. You're confusing who FIDE considered the Official Challenger with who Alekhine considered.
Jan-15-18  GT3RS: <keypusher>

<I'm sure Petrosianic knows way more about the 1948 championship than you do, since he's written a lot about it, citing contemporaneous sources, which you have not done. >

Oh snap. I see citing obvious stuff (on internet) makes you more credible. Sorry breh. Still learning.

<Since no one had ever died while holding the title, there was no "historical tradition" either way concerning Euwe's status.>

After Alekhine's death, many were of the quite reasonable opinion that, following "historical tradition", Euwe, as the only living ex-champion, should be proclaimed champion; then a challenger should be identified (the Americans suggested Reshevsky) and a match held between them. Makes perfect sense to me.

FIDE, which for the first time had the opportunity to take charge of the world championship, even managed to take this decision at its congress in The Hague (1947).

But Euwe remained world champion for only two hours, until the Soviet delegation appeared in the hall, led by grandmaster Ragozin, "Botvinnik's close friend" and trainer, soon to become FIDE VicePresident. And that's how they suggested the five cycle tournament.

~ From Kasparov's book (my great predecessors)

And as I have said earlier match play and tournament play are different.

Of course it doesn't matter now does it. Everyone who knows a thing about chess history knows Botvinnik/ Euwe etc are arguably the weakest champions and will always be beneath the other greats.

Jan-15-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <GT3RS....I see you’ve ignored most of my points and gone off track spewing unnecessary drivel....>

The drivel here emanates from you.

<....Absolute last post as I can’t stand your stupidity.>

On top of your utter inability to argue your case in any sort of cogent fashion, you have proven yourself a liar.

Jan-16-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: <GT3RS: ...Everyone who knows a thing about chess history knows Botvinnik/ Euwe etc are arguably the weakest champions ...>

<Arguably> is the important word. It's an opinion.

BTW, who are the <etc>?

Jan-16-18  Retireborn: <Offramp> etc = Karpov and Anand, judging by his earlier list.
Jan-16-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  PhilFeeley: Botvinnik a weak champion? That's why they named a chess school tradition after him, right?

As for "everyone", well, not me.

Jan-16-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: So <GT3RS> is saying, "It is possible to argue that Botvinnik, Euwe, Anand & Karpov were among the weakest of the 16 World Chess Champions".

It is a bit of a bland statement.

Jan-16-18  Howard: Karpov?! One of "the weakest of the 16 WC"s" ?!

If that's not totally ludicrous, then I dunno what is!

Jan-16-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <GT3RS>

<Oh snap. I see citing obvious stuff (on internet) makes you more credible. Sorry breh. Still learning.

<Since no one had ever died while holding the title, there was no "historical tradition" either way concerning Euwe's status.>

After Alekhine's death, many were of the quite reasonable opinion that, following "historical tradition", Euwe, as the only living ex-champion, should be proclaimed champion; then a challenger should be identified (the Americans suggested Reshevsky) and a match held between them. Makes perfect sense to me.

FIDE, which for the first time had the opportunity to take charge of the world championship, even managed to take this decision at its congress in The Hague (1947).

But Euwe remained world champion for only two hours, until the Soviet delegation appeared in the hall, led by grandmaster Ragozin, "Botvinnik's close friend" and trainer, soon to become FIDE VicePresident. And that's how they suggested the five cycle tournament.>

If you’re genuinely curious about what happened back then, you should read the Winter link I posted.

If you want no one to take you seriously, cite OMGP as a reliable historical source.

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