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Jose Raul Capablanca vs Rudolf Spielmann
Bad Kissingen (1928), Bad Kissingen GER, rd 6, Aug-17
Slav Defense: Alekhine Variation (D15)  ·  0-1


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Kibitzer's Corner
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Jan-13-06  TTLump: Nice idea by Spielmann! or should I say uncharacteristic mistake by Capa? Gives me deja-vu (all over again), :) because I have been caught like this too many times when responding to an attack on my Queen with a counter-attack on my opponent's Queen.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: <erimiro1: Ludek Pachman in his book "Modern chess tactics", wrote: "Black would have had much the better of it (the rook sac)after the best reply 28.Nb2 d4", but didn't continue. That's a nice demonstration of the old chess books (this one was written in 1970) that for many times don't get into details, and sum things up by general sayings> I agree - the Fritz analysis is good but also Bronstein in his book on the 1953 Candidates Tourney doesn't give any analysis that a master couldn't reasonably be able to see - generalities can also be trap - but my feeling also was that Black was beter.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: <erimiro1: Ludek Pachman in his book "Modern chess tactics", wrote: "Black would have had much the better of it (the rook sac)after the best reply 28.Nb2 d4", but didn't continue..... (this one was written in 1970) that for many times don't get into details, and sum things up by general sayings> I had his other two books on strategy Vols 2 and 3 but could never find his book on tactics and I wanted it. Must look out for it.

I thnk one needs to eventually make some kind of judgement after some analysis - after all the clock is "ticking" in a real game. There are two evils - too much anaylsis - and too many generalisations. Somewhere between is the balance for good play.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: < CZAR: i dont think this game should have been a puzzle because the main error was 28. Ne5 when 28. Nb2 was better which means the brilliant move 26...Rd5 just makes the game worth playing for if the queens are gone, it becomes boring because the end game is the worst, most lifeless and most boring part of chess.> The endgame can be the most fascinating part -it is a part!! You wont get far thinking endings can be avoided or are dull... many of if not most of Tal's games (the brilliant complex middle games are ones "picked out" by book writers) go into end games and its often where he converts his attack into a win. Even Tal was a good endgame player. This by <CZAR> is nonsense - it was a good puzzle for the day.
Jan-13-06 your thing looks scary to me.
Jan-13-06  suenteus po 147: <your thing looks scary to me> If I had a dollar for every time a girl...ah, never mind.
Jan-13-06  LIFE Master AJ: White's Knights got tangled up early. I have noticed that (today) that many GM's play e3 (as White) one move earlier, thus avoiding the problems that Capa experiences here.

Spielmann was a great player, but I am not sure everyone realizes just how good he was. According to Jeff Sonas, (see the page; he was once # 6 in the world. (My own personal calculations had put him as high as #3 or #4, but I have more faith in Sonas's work, as he has really crunched all the numbers.)

I knew that he peaked somewhere in the late 1920's or early 1930's, this was obvious by his results. (Sonas gives us the following info: <"Best Individual Performance: 2791 in Karlsbad, 1929, scoring 14.5/20 (73%) vs. 2645-rated opposition">)

Spielmann's best years also were bad times for international chess, by early 1930's, the depression (that had started in the U.S.) had begun to have a global effect, thus reducing the amount of dollars available for good tournaments. And by the late 1930's, Europe was headed down the road that eventually led to WWII.

Just comparing these two players shows the difference between them, you can still find a wealth of books on Capablanca ... but try finding a really good book on Spielmann. (I have a few, but one is not even in English!)

In the end, the definitive book on this player has not been written. Today, he is (mostly) remembered as a good writer and one of the last major players to embrace gambits. But I am not sure if it is generally appreciated just what a good player he really was.

Jan-13-06  morpstau: I think Spielmann might have played Lasker for the World Championship and tied him. But Lasker retained the Title because he was the Defending Champ. Is this correct Lifemaster?
Jan-13-06  Koster: Possibly you are thinking of Schlecter. That match is still discussed today, with some people saying that the rules required Schlecter to win by two points to get the title, and others who say it wasn't a title match at all.
Jan-13-06  morpstau: Yes thats him Karl Schlecter. He was a grest attacking player and i believe he had a winning position and he blew it and a draw resulted. Taht was indeed for the W.C. title. Thanks, Koster.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: A rare position where each player in turn ends an attack on his queen by interposing a piece! Black turns out better as he picks up a piece in the manoever.
Jan-14-06  CZAR: <Richard Taylor> Yes Tal is good at everything, even at end games, but i dont think he enjoyed it. Afterall, you cant keep sacrificing material and play for an end game! Tactical fireworks is what chess is all about-- not a lifeless end game!

Actualy, i'v thought about this puzzle for an hour or less and i could not see anything (such as a good combination or gain in material), so i simply checked the game and saw nothing amazing. 28. Ne5 was the blunder, 28. Nb2 was inferior but still it doesnt gain Black anything. Saving the Knight gives Capablanca the later option to sacrifice it or use it to checkmate, definitely, 28. Nb2 is better than 28. Ne5??

Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: <CZAR> Tal like all great masters loved all aspects of Chess - maybe he liked attacks and complications in the middle game but he knew also that end games can also be very complex and tricky and beautiful - endgames can be tactically as subtle as the middle game. You can sacrifice material and play for th end game it is precisely such calculations and evaluations of end games that 'fuel' many attacks - Tal and other "attacking players play many games where no sacrifices were made - or where the game was say even draw but the were complex tactics and strategical "exchanges" taking place. If you study Tal's games he is always playing moves that are logical (he almost never played any gambits -not that they are illogical as such) - nothing is really irrational he just knew when to complicate ( he wouldnt always see his way clear in such complications - like Topalov Fischer and Kasparov he knew when to move into an endgame) but he did so when he was developed or had a slight edge or things were unclear. No: he loved endgames, openings -everything.

That Capablanca didn't see Nb2 is typical of what happens when defender is under pressure (se Tal -many many masters' games - and others) - Lasker also was aware of the psycholgical factors - but Capablanca knew he would lose time by that move and probably lose the ending as did Spielmann.

Jan-16-06  CZAR: Beautiful end games are very rare. The only exciting part is when a player sacrifices material and still prevails in the end because he has dangerous passed pawns just like in the Svidler-Topalov, San Luis 2005, and game 6 of the 1960 World Championship match. However, one should never agree to exchanging queens if the position is equal for both sides for it would lead to a lifeless end game.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Spielman's 26...Rd5! is an excellent example of using a double attack to force a positional advantage. After 26...Rd5! 27. Rxd5 exd5 28. Ne5?, Capablanca made it easy for Black to win the pinned piece.

However, after 28. Nb2 d4! Spielman would still have been able to secure a clear and strong advantage, against which even the great Capablanca might not have been able to avoid a forced loss.

Oct-20-06  RookFile: It's amazing that Spielmann was able to beat Capablanca not once, but twice, and put up a lifetime even record against him.
Aug-31-07  Emma: morpstau: Yes thats him Karl Schlecter. He was a grest attacking player. Are you sure Morpstau? Schlecter was know as one of the most drawish players of all time.
Mar-28-08  Whitehat1963: What happens if 30. f4?
Mar-28-08  dabearsrock1010: <whitehat> 30...Bxd3 and the pin is exploited
Apr-20-09  Sem: So the root of all evil is 26. Rd1, allowing the pin? Would a stupid-looking move like Qb1 or Qa2 have been better?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: Yes, 26.Qb1 e5 27.Rd1 Qe7 is better, but Black's two bishops look dangerous in any endgame.
Sep-05-09  slomarko: seems that Capablanca got unbelievable problems playing against players who were good in tactics. not only he got toasted by AA but also Spielmann gave him lessons.
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: Spielmann's only victory in the 1928 Bad Kissingen tournament.
Sep-13-11  drnooo: if you look at the record a little more closely it resembles that of Alekhines against Capa neither could get near him till 27 on into the 30s its that simple by then Capa just did not quite have what he used to perhaps even up to now the finest chess cogitator in the history of the 20th century and perhaps even further back to Morphy
Feb-26-17  edubueno: 13 dxc5 es un error grosero, a partir de entonces la partida se vuele cada vez más favorable a las negras. 13 Ce2! suena mucho más racional
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