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Aron Nimzowitsch vs Georg Marco
Gothenburg (1920), Gothenburg SWE, rd 9, Aug-14
Philidor Defense: Hanham Variation (C41)  ·  1-0


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sac: 11.Nxe5 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: In my line C.3) I didn't consider 13.Ba3 because of 13... c5 which loses to the move I actually thought: 14.e5. If now 14... Qxe5 15.Re1 is crushing.

However, I still think that 13.e5 wins. If the queen moves to d7 or d8 14.exf6 seems to give a considerable advantage to white.

Oct-02-08  Antonius Blok: Ok! Let's consider 13.Ba3 followed by Qd7 ?! or Qd8 ?!

Is there any way for white to take advantage or make huge pressure? If there isn't, so how to consider the sacrifice of the Queen by 13... cxd5!

Did Marco thought:"Ok, I will give him my Queen, but I will take two pieces, plus the knight that he sacrified, so this will equilibrate and lighten the pressure on my king" ??

Premium Chessgames Member
  YouRang: I approached this problem by making the following observations:

(1) Our Q controls the open d-file, rendering the black K immobile.

(2) Our LSB has potential to give check at b5, if we can displace the c6 pawn, or even take the weak f7 square should the opportunity arise.

(3) Our DSB carries the double threat of Ba3, or (after we move Nc3) attacking the weak pawn on e5.

(4) Both white knights are in attacking range, the Nc3 can attack the black Q and possibly be sac'ed to displace that c6 pawn (see item 2), while the Nf3 puts pressure on Pe5.

(5) Our rooks are well placed to join an attack by sliding to d1 (or maybe e1).

And that's about as far as I got.

It was a nice list -- 5 things. However, no clarity came to my mind about how to put them together. :-(

Oct-02-08  zb2cr: Hi <Antonius Blok>.

You wrote: "Sorry, i'm totally dumb!
but what happen's if 13... Qd7 ou Qd8 ?"

The obvious is 14. Nxe7. White has regained his piece and still has a menacing setup. 14. Bxe7 may be even stronger, but the complications are too much for my non-computer-aided brain.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: I missed this one;white gives up a few minor pieces to catch a queen.
Oct-02-08  Antonius Blok: <zb2cr> I saw it of course! but for me it was insufficient!

I tought there will be a better move or combination to do, considering the open d-file and the two bishops well taking aim !!

Now I know that I would never tryed this moves if I was in this situation !

IMHO, Nimzowitsch taked advantage considering some non-appropriate moves from Marco!

It's hard to find good moves against adequate moves of your opponent, but when he makes moves that you didn't anticipate (coz you judge them false)... It's too hard <:)

Not gonna build my combinations on less suitable moves of my opponent

Premium Chessgames Member
  DarthStapler: I got the first two moves
Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: I remembered this game - or I thought I did. It still took me a while to figure out why 12.Nd5 (after 11.Nxe5 Qxe5) is better than 12.Nb5. And so on.

I'm not usually a great Fred Reinfeld fan, but he has some useful comments on this game in his book 'Hypermodern Chess: Aron Nimzovich'. He notes that after 11.Nxe5, instead of ...Qxe5, "Relatively best was 11...Ne6, although after 12.f4 black would have no better objective than losing as slowly as possible".

In the main line 11.Nxe5 Qxe5 12.Nd5 Qd6 13.Ba3!, a few people found the alternative 13.e5. Reinfeld says that 13.e5 is best met by ...Qxd5, and "Black, with three minor pieces for the Queen, can keep his head above water for a while". He goes on to contrast this with the game continuation, where - although black still gets three pieces for the queen - white has a much stronger initiative and an extra pawn.

'Mating' the enemy Queen is a regular theme in Nimzowitsch's games - perhaps more common than mating the King.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: <macphearsome: I basically spent 10 minutes staring at the f7 tile and licking my lips without getting anywhere>

Me too! I had a lovely time analysing the likes of 11 Bxf7+ and 11 Nb5 followed by Bxf7+ and Nxe5 followed by Bxb7+ and all manner of combinations thereof ...

... except the game continuation, of course.

<kirchhoff: Could someone post a computer analysis of this problem. I'm not convinced that Black defended properly>

Fritz's favourite line after five minute's thinking time 11. Nxe5 Be6 12. Nd3 Bxc4 13. bxc4 Ne6 14. e5 Nd7 15. Ne4 O-O

click for larger view

I haven't a clue what's going on here, but Fritz reckons it is 1.5.

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Thursday + Nimzowitsch makes it immediately an insane level for me.

I exclude <blockade> firstly. So maybe it's an <overprotection> move or it' with <zugzwang>?

Arrgh, I'm so confused about it....

Should I think about <prophylaxis>?

... but finally I got it:

<11.♖a2 !!!

the birth of the "mysterical rook move".


Time to check...

Premium Chessgames Member
  beenthere240: The trick is seeing that after 11... Qxe5 12 Nd5! is possible because 12...Qxb2 is followed by mate. And if black plays anything else on move 11, it's just a pawn for nothing.
Premium Chessgames Member
  beenthere240: <whiteshark> After 11. Ra2, the win is slower and black can hold on until move 40 or so.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <beenthere240> Yes, you are right!!, I think.

But what is 'time' if you have a 'system' to prove? :D

Oct-02-08  ruzon: I actually saw 11. Nxe5 Qxe5 12. Nb5 Qxb2 13. Nc7+. I didn't see the other +, though, and of course everyone knows that + + + = #.

I saw no continuation after 11...Qb8. It's very instructive.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kirchhoff: Thanks to <JG27Pyth:>, <MostlyAverageJoe:>, <Once:>, and <Antonius Blok:>. I feel better about the time I put in trying to solve this.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Marco had some bad experience with the Philidor before: Alekhine vs G Marco, 1912
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheaN: 3/4

Critical positions ingame, but I missed it: reviewed Nxe5 only for a few moments, Nb5 longer. Neither seemed to work... >_>

Oct-02-08  zooter: I started at it for quite a while.

11.Nxe4 Qxe4 12.Nb5 Qb8 and black seems to have covered the mate threat. So how does white proceed?

Time to check

Oct-02-08  zooter: I started at it for quite a while.

11.Nxe4 Qxe4 12.Nb5 Qb8 and black seems to have covered the mate threat. So how does white proceed?

Oct-02-08  zooter: damn you and damn me..for some reason I thought that 12.Nb5 was good and 12.Nd5 was just bad as the knight is lost, but then again look at this:

11.Nxe4 Qxe4 12.Nd5 exd5 13.Bb5+ Bd7 14.Bxd7+ Nxd7 15.Bxd5 Nxd5

Is black really lost in this position? He has to give up at least 3 minor pieces to trap the queen in every variation. Correct me if i'm wrong

Oct-02-08  VooDooMoves: <zooter> Why not 11. Nxe5 Qxe5 12. Nd5 cxd5 13. Bb5+ Bd7 15. Bxe5 as the bishop is protected with pawn. Now black only has 2 pieces for the queen
Oct-02-08  TheBish: Yes! I solved this all the way to move 30. Ha! Seriously though, I did analyze the game line (among others) to 13. Ba3 as winning, and stopped there. Nice use of the discovered attack, and combining tactical themes (such as the Nc7 mate threat as well as the queen trap line).
Oct-02-08  sataranj: not my cup of tea
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: For the Thursday Oct 2, 2008 puzzle solution, White plays the surprise decoy sham sacrifice 11. Nxe5!, which sets up a winning discovered attack after 11...Qxe5 12. Nd5! .

If 12...Qxb2?? or 12...Qe6??, then it's 13. Nc7#.
If 12...Qb8, then 13. Nxe7 Kxe7 14. Ba3+ Ke8 15. Bd6 Bg4 16. f3 Qd8 17. fxg4 is winning.

Oct-24-08  Nietzowitsch: Atypic, but he jumped at the opportunity.
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