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Aron Nimzowitsch vs Jose Raul Capablanca
"The Other Immortal Zugzwang" (game of the day Feb-01-09)
New York (1927)  ·  Caro-Kann Defense: Advance Variation (B12)  ·  0-1
To move:
Last move:

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Given 70 times; par: 90 [what's this?]

Annotations by Raymond Keene.      [405 more games annotated by Keene]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 7 OF 7 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Feb-03-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <JediKush> Couldn't black play 46....Rc2 47. Qxc2 Qxf3 threatening ...Qg4#, as in Calli's line?
Feb-03-09  JediKush: or kh3 now that i look at it more.
Feb-03-09  paladin at large: <JediKush> How about 46. Kh3 Rc3 and if 47. Rxc3 bxc3 and the white queen cannot stop the pawn, else Black's queen will mate via f3, or if 47. Kg3 h4+ leads to the loss of the white rook.
Feb-03-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <paladinatlarge> <Jedi> I checked with Shredder. Strongest after 46. Kh3 is 46....Rc2 47. Qg3 h4. But 46....Rc3 47. Rg3 h4 (there it is again) is quite good enough.
Feb-03-09  mgm329: 46. Kh3 Rc2 47. Qg3 h4
Feb-04-09  paladin at large: <keypusher> Thanks! It really is hard to defend in your own kitchen.
Feb-04-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  Peligroso Patzer: The original immortal zugzwang:

Samisch vs Nimzowitsch, 1923

Feb-23-09  WhiteRook48: two fascinating Zugzwangs
Sep-15-09  Wayne Proudlove: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SWNs...
May-19-10  thickhead: <keypusher: <paladinatlarge> <Jedi> I checked with Shredder. Strongest after 46. Kh3 is 46....Rc2 47. Qg3 h4. But 46....Rc3 47. Rg3 h4 (there it is again) is quite good enough. > the second option 46....Rc3 47.Rg3 h4 on first look I thought is not correct due to 48.Kxh4 but on second thought 48.... Qd1 solves it.
May-19-10  thickhead: Actually White was in zwugzwang on move 45.White had to close the position by 46.b3 which suits white well since his weakness of b pawn in case of exchange of pieces is of no consequence now. Alternative 45.Rb3 turns out badly after 45....Qe4. 46.Rxb4 Rd3+ 47.Kh4 Rf3.Also 45...Re3 disallowing Black Q access to e4 is not possible because of disruption of Q support to d pawn.I have not gone through all 6 pages of kibitzing. If mine is a repetetion of somebody's comment I am sorry.
Jul-08-10  igiene: "One might suppose from this game that Capablanca had carefully read My System and then used all the theories contained therein against their inventor!" One might also suppose that Nimzo intentionally played passively to let Capa show the correctness of Nimzo's theories. If you consider the love for paradox , typical of great Nimzovitch, it's possible.
Oct-16-10
Premium Chessgames Member
  sevenseaman: Whatever White does, Black will eat into his position like a termite.
Jan-10-11  Salaskan: Nimzo defended too passively; if he pressured with 32.Qh4 Re4 33.Rf2 Kg6 34.Rh3 Rh8 he would've drawn easily because black can't make any progress.

After move 45, if white passes black can also simply play Qd1-Rxb3 and queening.

Feb-06-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: This game has been video annotated here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ms7R...

Feb-06-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  Fusilli: <Salaskan: Nimzo defended too passively; if he pressured with 32.Qh4 Re4 33.Rf2 Kg6 34.Rh3 Rh8 he would've drawn easily because black can't make any progress.>

That leads to this position:


click for larger view

Statically speaking, it looks like Black is slightly better. White's rook and queen are being stopped by just a rook, which suggests Black should have a shot at doing something on the queenside, but it is not clear what. White will keep the h-rook on the third rank, and that appears sufficient to stop everything, especially if Black plays ...a4, which fixes the position. In any event, you are right that Nimzo's chance was with making sure Capa would always have to keep that rook on h8 or only one tempo away from h8.

Must have been nerve-racking to be on the defensive side of a slow positional game against Capablanca!

Aug-31-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  notyetagm: Nimzowitsch vs Capablanca, 1927

<<<<notyetagm:>>> This game is just the most beautiful positional squeeze. Special Prize for the Best Played Game indeed. I also love Capa's crushing of Alekhine with the 2 knight outposts on b3/d3 and his First Brilliancy Prize Game miniature victory over Spielmann from the same New York 1927 Tournament. Still can't believe he lost 6-3 to Alekhine just a few months later.>

My very first kibitz on <CG.COM>, on March 15, 2004.

Aug-31-13  JoergWalter: <notyetagm> see how good Nimzowitsch's system is? When Capablanca applied it the inventor was helpless...
Aug-31-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  notyetagm: Nimzowitsch vs Capablanca, 1927

<JoergWalter: <notyetagm> see how good Nimzowitsch's system is? When Capablanca applied it the inventor was helpless...>

LOL

Aug-31-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  parisattack: <Fusilli ...Must have been nerve-racking to be on the defensive side of a slow positional game against Capablanca!>

Nimzo almost always looked helpless against Alekhine and Capablanca. Sure they were superior, but not *that* much more - so think there must have been some sort of psychological block.

As a big fan of Nimzo its tough even to play over some of those games for me.

Aug-31-13
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: <paris> ditto. Reminds me a bit of playing over Kasparov vs the computers.
Jan-07-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  john barleycorn: <kbob> Alekhine comments from the tournament book: (my translation)

<10.a3! [...]

The surprise attack
10.b4 would produce anything good:

10.... Qxb4!
11.Nb5 Na6
12.Ba3 Qa5
13.Bxc5 Nxc5
14.Nd6+ Kd7!
15.Qg3 Rhg8
16.Nxf7 Nf5 etc.
with advantage for black.>

Jan-07-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  john barleycorn: I think Nimzowitsch "learned" his respect for Capablanca early:

<During the course of the tournament many incidents of more or less interest took place. Niemzowitch, who considered himself very superior to me and others in the tournament, became very arrogant during the course of one of his lightning games against Bernstein, saying, because of a remark that I made, that I should not interfere in their game, as they were reputed masters and I had yet to become one. The outcome of his discourteous remark was a series of quick games for a side bet, which I won with ridiculous ease, and ended by his retracting the statement he had previously made.>

from: My Chess Career by Capablanca

Feb-13-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  kbob: <john barleycorn> Thanks, though I appear to have withdrawn my original comment. And Kasparov in PredecessorsI prefers to refute 10. b4 with 10. ...Bxb5 11. Rb1 Qa5
Apr-12-14  Conrad93: What's wrong with 18. f5!?
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