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Rudolf Spielmann vs Aron Nimzowitsch
Barmen Meisterturnier B (1905), Barmen GER, rd 2, Aug-15
Vienna Game: Anderssen Defense (C25)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
Jul-20-06  zb2cr: Spielmann looks more hypermodern than Nimzo here. I wonder if Nimzo was really hoping for the crude 24. b3??, Qa3! when he sacrificed the Bishop.

Also, would 24. ... cxb2+; 25. Kb1, Bd5 etc. have worked? Spielmann wouldn't then have had the counterattack down the h-file available.

Sep-08-09  mhelshou: What the hell is this game? Nimzowitsch is throwing pieces right and left
Sep-08-09  Udit Narayan: Maybe he accidentally had one too many...good thing he didn't fall asleep at the board.
Dec-22-09  jerseybob: Well guys, the answer is, in 1905 Nimzo was not yet the Hypermodern he later became. Neither was Richard Reti.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <24...cxb2+ 25.Kb1 Bd5 26.exd5 Rxd5> would indeed make things interesting, reaching this position:

click for larger view

And now White can play 27.Nxf6 Ra5 (27...Rxh1 28.Nxd5) 28.Rxh8+ Kb7 29.Qe4+ c6

click for larger view

And now a couple of computer moves: 30.Rb8+ Kxb8 31.Qxe5+ Rxe5 32.Nd7+ and 33.Nxe5, ending Black's attack while keeping rook and two knights for the queen.

That's the pretty line. From the first diagram, the simplest move for White is probably <27.c4!>, opening up the second rank for defense. Now if 27...Ra5 28.Qxb2, and 28...Rb5 is not available. And after 27...dxc3 28.Nxf6 Rxh1 29.Rxh1 Ra5 30.Rh8+ Kb7 31.Qe4+! trades queens.

Note the unusual effect of 27.c4; by placing a pawn on the 4th rank, White is eventually able to open the rank for defensive purposes.

Dec-26-15  PawnSac: < mhelshou: What the hell is this game? Nimzowitsch is throwing pieces right and left >

< jerseybob: Well guys, the answer is, in 1905 Nimzo was not yet the Hypermodern he later became. Neither was Richard Reti. >

At this time he was 19 yrs old, and not yet developed to his full powers. That would come almost a decade later. It must be remembered that 110 years ago the chess world was not filled with books, trainers, computer progs, the huge database of games, and so forth. The learning curve was much slower.

In all fairness, one's strategical ideas and positional assessment could only be honed when tested in actual play against the strongest opponents, AND this game was not without some interesting tactical basis. Against a lesser player Nimzo may have won it in swashbuckling style. And lastly... After the first sac (the Bg5) he was committed to following it thru. In for a penny, in for a pound, as they say. Regardless of the outcome, i can tell you that if i faced the same bishop sac i would have a long think, sitting on my hands, before playing a hasty hxg5.

After the game no doubt the young Nimzo thought "well humph.. that didn't work" and realized his idea was a bit too ambitious; but haven't we all done the same in games? If you haven't, then you have not pushed the limits on your attacking skills. So my attitude is.. hey, this is just one game, a loss, in a collection of very fine games in the career of a fine player who has taught us all something about good chess play.

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Featured in the Following Game Collection [what is this?]
Round 2 (Tuesday, August 15)
from Barmen Meisterturnier B 1905 by Phony Benoni

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