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Francisco Lupi vs Alexander Alekhine
Estoril (1946), Estoril POR, rd 2, Jan-07
French Defense: Rubinstein Variation (C10)  ·  1-0


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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-29-06  Knight13: Alekhine lost terribly.

So 22... Nxc3? is a tactic that didn't work due to the mate on h7 if Black allows Ng5 anytime.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn and Two: Alekhine's last defeat in a serious game.

Francisco Lupi was Alekhine's friend and last serious opponent. Lupi was a noted Portuguese player of the 1940's and early 1950's.

This was game 2 of their 4 game match played in January 1946 at the Estoril Casino in Portugal. Alekhine by winning the last 2 games of the match won by a score of: +2 -1 =1.

In a 1951 conversation, Lupi told Pablo Moran; <"I accepted the match above all because it would signify revenues for Alekhine, who was in a very precarious economic position. When I won the second game I regreted having accepted the match, because I realized that I could beat the world champion by those avatars of destiny, which in this case were illness and disillusion. Fortunately it went otherwise, and Alekhine won the next two games."

Moran then asked Lupi, "Lupi, wouldn't you have liked to beat the world champion in a match?"

"Of course, but that would have been an irony of destiny, a cruelty, and I have always been a conscientious man and chessplayer.">

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <Knight13><So 22... Nxc3? is a tactic that didn't work>

Agreed. It looks like 22...Kh7 is forced. Then White has at least a draw with 22...Kh7 23. Ng5+ Kg8 24. Nf3, repeating the position.

Or White can try for more with a line like 22...Kh7 23. Ng5+ Kg8 24. Ne4 Kh7 25. Bg5 Rd7 26. Qh4, pressurizing the kingside.

For a long time Black's kingside has been weakened by the absense of his knight from f6. Probably Alekhine was underestimating that factor in his plans.

Aug-11-07  wolfmaster: Clearly, Alekhine was drunk.
May-14-08  RookFile: Games like this provide a pretty objective view of how Alekhine would have done had he actually lived to play Botvinnik or Keres.
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  lost in space: Without any doubt 22...Nxc3 was the mistake of the game. But what was better?

I guess 22..Nf4 was o.k. After 23. Bxf4 Qxf4 Black is already slightly better

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  Marmot PFL: Maybe drunk, or just suffering from poverty and depression after being ostracized from world chess.
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  HeMateMe: Are you talking about AJ or AAA? (just kidding)
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  FSR: What a horrid game from the reigning World Champion. One doesn't see 8...b6, 10...Bd7 and 12...Be8 every day.
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  Domdaniel: There hadn't *been* any real world chess for seven or eight years when this was played -- a very long time for a man who'd had to summon reserves of discipline to regain the title from Euwe.
Jul-30-11  aliejin: The last game of this match (perhaps the last serious game of his life) Alekhine played it with an energy, wonderful enthusiasm. As a warning that his art will endure forever !
Jul-30-11  DavideSuazo: To Knight13.

After a little analyse i can conclude that 22...Nxc3 works after 24... Qd1+ 25.Bf1 Bb5 26.Bb2 (<if Nd2 then black has Rd8>) 26... Qc2 27. Bc1 (<if Bxb5 then Qxb2 and black creates a passed c pawn and if Ba3 then black got Qxc3 and white also loses a Bishop>) 27... Bxf1 and the king cann't take back because of Qd3+!

After 22... Nxc3 23.Rxd8 Qxd8 white better played Bxh6. So all i can say the mistake is 24...Bxc3?

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: A.A.: A fronte praecipitium, atergo Lupi.
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