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Edgar Colle vs Jose Raul Capablanca
Karlsbad (1929)  ·  Indian Game: Capablanca Variation (A47)  ·  0-1
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find similar games 3 more Colle/Capablanca games
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Kibitzer's Corner
Mar-19-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  Karpova: no kibitzing on this masterly example of how to refute the colle system?

colle really thought he had committed not mistake and it's hard refute his opinion. capablanca just plays faultless chess and white's game slowly becomes worse and worse.

the main problem is that white's attack doesn't materialize while the white d-pawn is totally weak.

nice variation: 25.qb2? (instead of be3 as actually played) qb:!

Mar-19-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: See Vukovic's Art of Attack in Chess for a more critical view of Capablanca's (and Colle's) play.
Mar-19-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  Karpova: <keypusher>
could you give me a short summary of what vukovic says about this game? i don't have the book.
Mar-19-05  THE pawn: One of my Capa's favorite.
Mar-19-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <karpova>, I don't have it handy, but I will try to remember to bring it in. I know he didn't like 20...Bxd4.

I certainly recommend the book. The effort Vukovic put into analysis was phenomenal.

Mar-19-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  Karpova: <keypusher>
ok, thanks anyway.

i like 20...bd4:, capa could have played rac8 first but i'm sure the move played is no mistake

Mar-19-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: Vukovic pointed out that white's mistake was 23.Qh4? Correct is Bd2

Golombek originally gave 23.Bd2 Nxf4 24.Bxf4 fxe5 25.Bf3 (if 25.dxe5 Rxf4) 25...e4 26.Be2 e3 27.Rxe3 Rxf4

Very nice but Vukovic found the flaw:
23.Bd2! Nxf4 24.Bxf4 fxe5 25.Bf3 e4 26.Qh4!;

John Nunn says Black would have to be satisfied with a draw 23.Bd2 fxe5 24.Rc1 Qb5 25.Qh4 Nf6 26.Rxc8 Bxc8 27.fxe5 Nh5 28.Rf3 Rxf3 29.Bxf3 Qxb2 30.Bh6 Qb1+ 31.Kf2 Qb2+ Perpetual check

Mar-19-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  Karpova: <calli>
it took about seventy years of analysis (-> nunn) to reveal the truth?

one of the greatest compliments for capablanca and colle!

Mar-20-05
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <karpova> <calli> gave the key analysis in his post above; here is what Vukovic wrote about 20...Bxd4:

"Satisfied with the centralization he has achieved, Black now too becomes rather presumptuous and opens the c-file prematurely. 20...f5 followed by a quiet positional plan based on ...b5-b4 was probably best. In that event simplification by 21 Nxc6 Bxf2+ Kxf2 Bxc6 would give Black the better ending, while if 21 Be3, then 21...Bxd4 22 cd Nb4 would be perfectly agreeable. The move suggested, 20...f5, signifies that Black is satisfied with a small advantage, whereas Capablanca's idea aspires to dynamic play on the c- anf f- files. However, the preconditions for this are insufficient, for counterattacks too demand preconditions and entail commitments just as attacks on the king do. The laws which determine the connection between the two types of action dictate the form, timing and tempo of the counterattack in accordance with the state of the attack. Thus, the degree to which the attacking units have been diverted condition the extent and force of the counterattack. In this case, therefore, direct defense with 20...f5 would have been better than 20...Bxd4."

One of Vukovic's principal themes is the necessity of avoiding irrevocable commitments unless they lead to a win or clear advantage. Thus he is tempermentally inclined to be skeptical about a move like 20...Bxd4, especially when White has not made any irrevocable commitments himself yet. After 22...f6 Vukovic writes:

"This much praised move of Capablanca's is very economical in that it attacks and defends in equal measure; it is probably Black's best, now that he has embarked on 20...Bxd4. It is also generally true that an attack collapses when the pawns in front of the king begin to 'bite', but in this case the question is no longer one of attack but of the general state of the position. Black has in fact awoken possibilities for White on the c-file, and in the event of the game being opened up White's two bishops would come into their own."

Mar-17-06
Premium Chessgames Member
  notyetagm: After 25 Qf2?, to defend the White d4-pawn, the White king is also trapped on the back rank since the White queen now self-blocks the f2-square.

Capablanca would then have won a piece with 25 ... Qxc1+!, exploiting the back rank theme that one defender of the back rank (White a1-rook) cannot keep out two heavy piece enemy attackers (Black c4-queen, c8-rook) from the back rank c1-square.

This variation goes 25 Qf2? Qxc1+! 26 Rxc1 Rxc1+ 27 Qf1 Rxf1+ 28 Kxf1 and Black has won a bishop due to the White king being trapped on the back rank by 25 Qf2?.

Mar-18-06  euripides: Capablanca effectively transforms the QID here into a Paulsen/Kan.
Apr-07-06  Whitehat1963: Didn't know Capa had any variations named after him. (Opening of the Day)
Apr-07-06
Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: Colle has an opening named too. =) Couple of chess Titans here.
Jan-25-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Ulhumbrus: On 23 Bd2 Qc7 24 Rc1 Qb8 25 Qh4 Rf7 26 Rxc8+ Qxc8 27 Bf3 Ne7 28 Bxb7 Qxb7 29 gxf6 Nf5 Black may have the better of it
Dec-18-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  notyetagm: 25 ?


click for larger view

(VAR) 25 Qh4-f2?


click for larger view

<notyetagm: After 25 Qf2?, to defend the White d4-pawn, the White king is also trapped on the back rank since the White queen now <<<self-blocks>>> the f2-square.

Capablanca would then have won a piece with 25 ... Qxc1+!, exploiting the <<<back rank>>> theme that one defender of the back rank (White a1-rook) cannot keep out two heavy piece enemy attackers (Black c4-queen, c8-rook) from the back rank c1-square.

This variation goes 25 Qf2? Qxc1+! 26 Rxc1 Rxc1+ 27 Qf1 Rxf1+ 28 Kxf1 and Black has won a bishop due to the White king being trapped on the <<<back rank>>> by 25 Qf2?.>

(VAR) 25 ... Qc4xBc1+!


click for larger view

Feb-20-09  YoungEd: Okay, a naive question about the opening: why did White retake with the N on move 9 instead of with the P? Wouldn't he be able to keep a strong center that way?
Feb-20-09  Granny O Doul: <YoungEd> After 9.cd Nb4, Black snags the bishop pair. If 10.Bb1, then ...Ba6 11.Re1 Nd3.
Feb-20-09  MaxxLange: <YoungEd> Another reason is that Black can control the open c-file first with ...Rac8
Feb-20-09  MaxxLange: You will find that Colle System players usually shun cxd4, even when it is good for them, because they love their "solid" structure. They put the pawn on c3 to keep it there...
Feb-21-09  YoungEd: Thanks, <Granny> and <Maxx>. I thought White would be okay with 10. Bb1 but you show differently. I wonder if 10. Bc4 with the idea of retreating to b3 if needed might work out.
Nov-08-10  Wayne Proudlove: Black has a variety of approaches to counter the Colle System. One of the most dynamic is to aim for a Queen's Indian style set-up. White's pawn push to e4 slashes at empty space, while Black's pieces are poised to undermine White's centre and attack the queenside. The technique is well illustrated in the 1929 game between Colle and Jose Capablanca.
Aug-29-11  DrMAL: Cappy got an equal game with 5...c5 in his QID against Colle's opening here. I think 9.cxd4 was stronger and 12.f4 was risky (instead of 12.a4) weakening the king. 23.Qh4?! to attack left the g2 square uncovered, with 24.Bf3 to protect 24...Qc4! attacks d4 and, after 25.Be3 to protect, 25...Nxe3 won a pawn. 27.Qe1?! instead of 27.Qf2 lost two pawns instead. With 34...Kf7 all white could do was swap rooks. Great game by Capablanca. <YoungEd> White often DOES retake 9.cxd4 (Opening Explorer)
Sep-24-11
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <<Calli > John Nunn says Black would have to be satisfied with a draw 23.Bd2 fxe5 24.Rc1 Qb5 25.Qh4 Nf6 26.Rxc8 Bxc8 27.fxe5 Nh5 28.Rf3 Rxf3 29.Bxf3 Qxb2 30.Bh6 Qb1+ 31.Kf2 Qb2+ Perpetual check >

After 23.Bd2 fxe5 24.Rc1 there is also the queen sacrifice <24... Qxc1 25. Bxc1 Rxc1 26.Qd2 Ra1 27.fxe5 Nf4> worth a consideration.


click for larger view

Jul-30-13  qqdos: "A work of art - in any field of endeavour - goes beyond merely external beauty." "This game speaks to me." - Quotes from Cyrus Lakdawala in his recent book on The Colle, page 169 where he analyses this game in his best Move by Move vein. His summary: "Against the Queen's Indian formation, it is important that you recapture on d4 with your c-pawn if possible. If you recapture with a knight, as in this game, White tends to drift into a sorry-looking Open Sicilian."
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