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Paul Keres vs Max Euwe
Zandvoort (1936), Zandvoort NED, rd 2, Jul-19
French Defense: Advance Variation. Nimzowitsch System (C02)  ·  0-1


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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: Euwe keeps offering the a pawn. I don't see why it is poison.

26 Bxa5 b6 27 Bc3

if 27...Rh5 28 h3
Rg5 Kh1 and White is a pawn to the good
with equal or preferable chances.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: <Tamar> The f2 pawn is hanging after Kh1. Or could Euwe (a wild man sometimes) actually go in for 26.Bxa5 b6 27.Bc3 Rh5 28.h3 Rg5 29.Kh1 f3?! 30.Rxh4 fxg2+ 31.Qxg2 Rxg2 32.Kxg2 Nxh4+
Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: Euwe a wild man?

"Mr Keres, take the a pawn and step onto 'Max Euwe's Wild Ride'"

<26.Bxa5 b6 27.Bc3 Rh5 28.h3 Rg5 29.Kh1 f3?! 30.Rxh4 fxg2+ 31.Qxg2 Rxg2 32.Kxg2 Nxh4+>

Fearless Shredder says Keres would have survived though with 33 Kf1 at the end.

The other possibility is using the d pawn as a distraction and using the tactics in a different order.

26 Bxa5 b6 27 Bc3

27...d2 28 Rd1 Rh5 29 h3 Qg3 or even the audacious 29...Qg5

This looks awful complex though, is it possible Euwe could have planned an answer like this?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: <Euwe a wild man?> See the Keres-Euwe match in 1940. Maybe not wild, but very aggressive.

Well, I don't see anything in these tactical lines, but in the original line 26.Bxa5 b6 27.Bc3 Rh5 28.h3 Rg5 29.Kh1 Qxf2 30.Nd4 Qxf1+ 31.Rxf1 d2 is nicer for Black.

Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: <Calli> Yes, I see your point about the f pawn hanging after Kh1, but I felt the endgame was better for White if Queens came off. I'll have to look at it again.

<See the Keres-Euwe match in 1940.>

My stereotypes about players sometimes get in the way of my actually seeing how they played. Lifelong I have seen Euwe as a weak champion, based mainly on the falloff in his skills and the 1948 poor showing.

I expected Keres to wildly attack in this game, and Euwe to calmly defend. Instead Euwe embarks on an ambitious long tactical sequence running both the d pawn and f pawn into Keres position around move 20 Great stuff.

Shredder is finding a win in the d2 line now that I've given it time to think. It is a VERY complex line combining BOTH Qg3 and Qg5 and so is very unlikely to have been foreseen by either participant.

Still running but the line so far:

26 Bxa5 b6 27 Bc3 d2 28 Rd1 Rh5 29 h3 Qg3 30 Bd4 Qg5! 31 Rxd2 Rxh3 32 Rd3 Rh4 33 Nd6 Qh4 34 Rh3 Rxh3 35 gxh3 Bxd6 36 exd6 Rxd6 and Black's attack is very strong 3.00

Feb-05-06  HolyKnight: Can someone explain the the 11. Nb8 move black made. He ends up taking the knight off the c6 square, goes to b8 than to a6 than to b4 than back to c6.

I don't see why black instead of this trys to put more pressure on whites king pawn. Or just simply develops more.

Apr-10-06  DeepBlade: Nimzovich's comments on the game: ''White's main error was he neglected the overprotection of the great blockader on e5, and went for the tempting Queenside dominance''

(well that aint Nimzo's comments, but mine)

Premium Chessgames Member
  Gregor Samsa Mendel: <DeepBlade>--By 1936, Nimzo probably didn't have much to say regarding anything. He had been dead for two years.
Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: They said of Max Euwe, that he was "a genius of law and order."
Jun-12-06  dakgootje: "He is logic personified, a genius of law and order. One would hardly call him an attacking player, yet he strides confidently into some extraordinarily complex variations." - Hans Kmoch
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: I realize that this is a very late response to <HolyKnight's> question, but Black played 11...Nb8 as the start of a plan to relocate the Knight to--believe it or not--e4! The intended route was Nb8-a6-c5-e4, a powerful relocation that forced first Nb3, a weak square for the Knight, and then a4 to prevent ...a5-a4, weakening b4. Since White blocked Black from carrying out his plan, Euwe simply switched gears and took advantage of the weaknesses Keres created on his own dark squares. Notice that only did b4 become weak, but so did c5 and d4.

All because of 11...Nb8. Chess can become quite paradoxical in its logic.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn and Two: <An Englishman> You are correct about Euwe's intended destination for his errant Knight.

In his notes to this game, Euwe states, <Intending to bring this Knight to e4 via d7 and c5. Black need not fear the loss of time incurred, as the position is blocked.>

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