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Salomon Flohr vs Jose Raul Capablanca
Nottingham (1936), Nottingham ENG, rd 3, Aug-12
Queen's Gambit Declined: Tartakower Defense. Exchange Variation (D59)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: Chessmetrics ranks Flohr No. 2 in the world on 10 monthly "rating lists" in 1935-36 (second to Alekhine 9 times, second to Euwe once).
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: I was right! (about my line being too simple for a Friday...). I overlooked the resource Rg6, or rather I saw it but discounted because of Ne7+, which doesn't work. I'm going to start using a board for Friday puzzles.
Jul-20-18  WorstPlayerEver: Stop the presses.
Premium Chessgames Member
  wtpy: Worst player ever, I had the same line and thought it looked very strong, but I did not consider Bc4 as defense.In that line if white continues 39 Ne7+, black has 39...Re7 40 Qe7 Rg2+ and if 41 Kg2 Qg4+ allows black the perpetual.
Jul-20-18  WorstPlayerEver: Flohr played excellent! However, after 24. Bd3 Black is positionally lost. Knight vs Bishop; 24. Bd3 Nd3 25. Rd3

-24. Qf3 Rc7 and Black's still fighting.

Premium Chessgames Member
  landshark: My stab at this is 38.Nf5 which virtually forces ...Rg6 then 39.Qe5 threatening Ne7 among other things. If ...Qd7 or d8 then 40.Rxd5 and it looks like White is starting to overrun Black's position -
Jul-20-18  WorstPlayerEver: <wtpy>

I didn't even notice! I only looked at Nd6: 38. Nf5 Rg6 39. Qe5 Bc4 40. Nd6, which comes down to the same pattern as in the game. But now Black has to give up their Rook for the Knight at d6.

Maybe 38. Nf5 Rg6 39. Qe5 Bc4 40. Nd6 Re6 41. Nxc8 is even better (after 41. Qg3 I figured out that Black has to play Rxd6).

Jul-20-18  WorstPlayerEver: PS I must admit Nd6 reminded me of yesterday's puzzle. So it was not hard to find :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  landshark: <WorstPlayerEver> I agree with you about 40.Nd6 Surely this is winning - ?
Jul-20-18  WorstPlayerEver: <landshark>

Yes, I checked with Stockfish. The 24. Bd3 line I gave also comes from Stockfish, btw.

That said, the way Capa handled this pos is worth a study. They tried to activate their pieces, but isolani d5 does not live up to this plan; it need to be defended. So the Black Rook is useless at the king side. Black's pieces don't coordinate well.

Jul-20-18  Cheapo by the Dozen: I went with 38 Bf5, with the plan of following up with e4 and threatening to win the exchange at the expense of either Black rook. The engine says that Black has so much counterplay as to give him an advantage.

However, the engine also says that White erred by not following my plan a couple of moves earlier, specifically via 37 e4.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: The black queen is tied to the defense of the rook on c7. The knight is well placed to create threats. These details suggest 38.Nf5:

A) 38... Rxf5 39.Bxf5 wins an exchange (39... Qxf5 40.Qxc7 Nd3 41.Rc2 + - [2R vs b+n]).

B) 38... Rg6 39.Nd6

B.1) 39... Rxg3 40.Nxc8

B.1.a) 40... Rg4(5) 41.Nxb6, followed by Nxa4 or Nxd5, wins two pawns.

B.1.b) 40... Rg6 41.Bxg6 wins an exchange at least.

B.1.c) 40... Rxg2+ 41.Kxg2 Rxc8 42.Bf5 followed by Bg4-f3 with probably a won ending.

B.1.d) 40... B(R)xc8 41.hxg3 + - [R vs n].

B.2) 39... Qd7 40.Bxg6 fxg6 41.Qxg6 Rc6 42.Qe8+ Qxe8 43.Nxe8 Kf7 44.Nxg7 Kxg7 45.Rxd5 + - [R+3P vs b+n].

B.3) 39... Qd8 40.Bxg6 as above.

B.4) 39... Ne4 40.Nxc8

B.4.a) 40... Nxg3 41.Rxc7 wins an exchange at least.

B.4.b) 40... Rxc1 41.Rxc1 Nxg3 42.hxg3 wins a piece (42... Re6 43.Rc6 Rxc6 44.Ne7+ Kf8 45.Nxc6, etc.).

C) 38... g6 39.Nxh6+ wins a pawn at least.

D) 38... Qf8 39.Qxc7, etc.

Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Black's decisive mistake was 37...Qc8?, allowing today's Friday puzzle solution 38. Nf5! +- (+2.15 @ 40 ply, Stockfish 9 analysis of move 38...?).

Instead, 37...Rd7 = to ⩲ (+0.20 @ 40 ply, Stockfish 9 analysis of move 37...?) keeps the game nearly level.

Earlier in the opening, the computer prefers 12...c5 = as in Lisitsin vs A Vasiljev, 1947.

After the game continuation 12...a6 13. Rd1 ⩲, it becomes difficult for Black to avoid a weak isolated pawn -- a difficulty avoided with 12...c5 =. Perhaps it's also worth noting that this is the only game recorded with 12...a6 in our Opening Explorer.

Premium Chessgames Member
  malt: Had 38.Nf5 Rg6 39.Qe5
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  OhioChessFan: <"This interference on the part of Euwe was absolutely inadmissable; but the tournament director was at that time busy with his own correspondence...">

I'll take BS for 800, Alex. Riiiiight, Capablanca, for crying out loud, Capa in time trouble, a crowd gathers, and the TD is busy somewhere else.

Premium Chessgames Member
  malt: 38.Nf5 Rg6 39.Qe5 Rd7
(39...Bb7 40.Ne7+ )
40.R:d5 R:d5 41.Ne7+ Kf8
(41...Kh7 42.B:g6+ )
(41...Kh8 42.N:g6+ )

42.N:g6+ fg6 43.Q:d5

Jul-20-18  morfishine: Not really sure what went wrong here for Capa. Its rare to see him outcombined and edged out in the endgame, all in the same game!
Jul-20-18  Mayankk: Same as a few others, I had Nf5 threatening mate on g7, necessitating a Rg6 response followed by Qe5 which had the threat of Ne6 fork and Rxd5. But more importantly it didnít seem that Black had any counter-threats and so White could slowly build on its position.

Too complex me after that, given the variety of side-lines it could branch into.

Jul-20-18  saturn2: I went with 39 Qe5 threatening Ne7 and Rxd5
Premium Chessgames Member
  ClassZPlaya: Found the main line and solved the puzzle, but I was impressed by how much play Black had left in the position. Flohr needed to continually play accurately to bring home the win.
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  NM JRousselle: I can't take credit for solving this one. I saw this game many years ago. It's interesting that the tournament report on this game has Euwe kibitzing and causing Capa to err.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jimfromprovidence: I liked the simple 49 f3, below, preventing 49...Be4+ which would be winning for black.

click for larger view

It also forces 49...Bxc2 because of the threat 50 Rc3 or 50 Rcd2.

As an aside, 49 f3 and 49 Rc8+ look like the only clearly winning moves for white at that point.

Premium Chessgames Member
  swclark25: I eventually found 38.Nf5 but assumed Black chose 38...Rxf5 (rather than the slightly better game move of 38...Rg6). Then that left 39.Bxf5 Qxf5 40.Qxc7 which wins the exchange per <agb2002's> line A)
Jul-20-18  popnstart: hmmm...Nd6 sac and win against Capa not in Flohr's "Notable Games" section?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Was hoping it was Capablanca to move. Mid-late week Capablanca puzzles are the only one I have a chance to solve. Just love the simplicity of his play.

I got 39.Nf5, but no idea what black would reply with.

What a short line.

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