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Richard Reti vs Jose Raul Capablanca
"A Knight in Capablanca" (game of the day Jul-11-07)
New York (1924)  ·  English Opening: Anglo-Indian Defense. King's Indian Formation (A15)  ·  1-0
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Kibitzer's Corner
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Jun-30-11  DrMAL: <maxi: If you think different engines converge in the assessment> That is not what I wrote. Clearly, you will remain some sort of arrogant low level player bent on trying to appear otherwise. Post more rubbish, insult those who know more, I am sure you will anyway. Hopefully others will see it for what it is.
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: Mmmmm, <laskereshevsky>, <whatthefat>, looking over in this thread I see I didn't do my homework last year. I am very sorry. Now I will. Although possibly by now you guys won't give a heck about it. Again, sorry.
Jun-30-11  DrMAL: <maxi> Finding coincidences is much more suitable LOL. Meantime, if you find any engine that chooses 19...Ne6 after half an hour please let me know so I can write it's author, thanx.
Jun-30-11  psmith: <DrMAL>:

With respect to 26. R1d5 vs. 26. Nd4, opinions seem to differ. Alekhine, in the New York 1924 Tournament Book gives notes that 26. R1d5 wins the Queen but still seems to think that 26. Nd4 is superior. This is probably what <olavi> had in mind. (Here's Alekhine: "26. Nd4 The most compelling move. White, to be sure, by means of the surprising continuation of 26. R1d5 Bxd5 27. g4 Bxf3 28. gxh5 Bxh5 29. Bc6 would have won the queen for a rook, knight and pawn, but the final tussle in that case would have been much more difficult and tedious than after the best defense possible against the move in the text.")

Would you mind mentioning a source or analysis that supports the claim that 26. R1d5 is stronger and faster? I completely understand that Alekhine might have been mistaken, and he didn't have the benefit of powerful engines to double-check his analysis. But I'd like to know what supports overturning his opinion. I'm just interested in learning.

Jun-30-11  DrMAL: <psmith:> Like many others I am aware of Alekhine's notes from this tournament. He also mentions a nice plan for the Gruenfeld in the same book. Good stuff to learn on the way to mastery. If you are interested in learning, perhaps you should not quote what was written in 1924 as gospel and check for yourself. Engines are good for this, it is why they are used at all levels.

This game is very famous there are many websites with it and even blogs on it. I do not know offhand of some "reference" that purposely states Alekhine was wrong, nor do I care to check as such things are unimportant. If you are "interested in learning" I hope you do so. A more basic reference for learning is Kingscrusher's video

Jun-30-11  Olavi: The real and only point between 26.Rd5 and 26.Nd4 is that every stong player, after compering the resulting positions, immediately chooses the latter, it is a clear win, and easy to play.
Jul-07-11  qqdos: <Olavi> Tarrasch does not agree with you. 26.Nd4? (+0.64/depth 15) is not even third choice. 26.Nh4 (+0.99/16) is second; 26.Ne1 (+0.82/15) is next; with 26.R1d5! (+2.04/16) way out in front. Perhaps our squabbling twins <maxi> and <DrMAL> may care to chew over the above!
Jul-07-11  psmith: <qqdos>
Is Tarrasch the human being, Dr. Siegbert Tarrasch, or is there a computer program I don't know about named "Tarrasch"? We already know that programs set on this position don't choose Nd4 as their first choice or even their second. The question is what more extensive analysis shows. I think <DrMAL> is actually more right on this than I had first thought, though he never provided analysis to back it up -- but examining the position for a while seems to bear out R1d5 as a quicker and more efficient way to win -- though I also think both Nd4 and R1d5 are winning moves.
Jul-07-11  qqdos: <psmith> Tarrasch is a chess engine using an earlier version of Rybka. Rybka4 confirms the supremacy of 26.R1d5! (+2.47/17) and gives 26.Ne1 (1.01/17) as second choice. Reti, who deserves tremendous credit for piling on the pressure and inducing Capa into this historic loss, won so quickly with 26.Nd4? because Capa played a couple of indifferent moves - specifically: 27...Qe5?! (better 27...Rex3); and 30...Ne5?? (better 30...Rxe3) which was instantly punished by 31.R1d5! (3.66/19).
Jul-07-11  DrMAL: <qqdos> Houdini_15a_x64 (lines truncated):

25/76 30:06 9,113,397,661
+4.06 26.R1d5 Bxd5 27.g4
+1.13 26.R6d5 Bxd5 27.Rxd5
+1.07 26.Nh4 Rc7 27.R1d4
+1.04 26.Ne1 Bxg2 27.N1xg2 Qf3
+0.65 26.Nd4 Bxg2 27.Kxg2
+0.60 26.Qe2 Re6 27.Rxe6

Just sayin' LOL

Jul-08-11  qqdos: <DrMAL> Many thanks for the comparative listings. Spot on! I had looked at 26.R6d5 but this allows the BQ to escape with 27...g5. Also 27.g4 doesn't work. My concern for <psmith> is that all this doesn't prove that 26.Nd4(?) would allow Black with best play to prolong the game for many more moves and might even lead to a draw. With 26.R1d5!! the BQ is lost in 2 or 3 moves and caput.
Jul-08-11  psmith: <qqdos>
I think the judgment "the BQ is lost in 2 or 3 moves and caput" is a bit quick -- I agree that on analysis (and the computers support this) White is winning more quickly in the R1d5 line but it is not just because the BQ is lost -- Alekhine saw that variation but misjudged the position after 26. R1d5 Bxd5 27. g4 Bxf3 28. gxh5 Bxh5 29. Bc6. Looking at that position more closely Black's pieces are poorly co-ordinated and that leads to further catastrophic loss fairly quickly. There are of course situations in which a Rook, minor piece and pawn is not a bad trade for a Queen, but this is not one of them, and the "resulting tussle" is not nearly as prolonged or difficult as Alekhine thought. But although the programs may see this, citing their evals doesn't really illuminate things for the human chess player, as much as actually playing through some lines does.

What I find more interesting is the preference for several other moves over Reti's choice of Nd4. I would say that Reti's move is overwhelmingly natural for a human player, but the tactics seem to favor other moves (and that's where the programs beat us). There seem to be a couple of things going on here.

First, 26. R6d5: After 26.... g5 Black's Queen is still very close to being trapped. But I'd like to know how Houdini (or any other program) proves White to have an advantage (more than a pawn) in this position. I don't see the plan, myself.

Second, why are other Knight moves except 26. Nd4 better? -- against 26. Nd4 Bxg2 27. Kxg2 Rxe3! is a surprising resource pointed out by <qqdos>. Black gives up the exchange for a weakened White Pawn structure and activity for his Queen. I am not sure that White doesn't have a win from this position. But the other Knight moves -- to e1 or h4 -- have the result that after 26...Bxg2 27. N(h4 or e1)xg2 the Knight is covering e3 and the communication between the Rooks on the d-file is not broken, so if 27... Rxe3 is pointless, and White is better.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sastre: After 26.R1d5 g5, 27.g4 Qg6 28.Rxg6+ wins the Black queen.
Jul-08-11  psmith: <Sastre> The question is what happens after 26. R6d5 (that's Rook on Six to d 5) g5. (26. R6d5 is the second choice of the programs after 26. R1d5).
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sastre: <psmith> Houdini's main line after 26.R6d5 g5 is 27.Ne5 Bxd5 28.g4 Nxe5 29.gxh5 Bxg2 30.Kxg2 Rd7 31.Rxd7 Nfxd7 32.Qd4 (d=22/+2.73).
Jul-08-11  psmith: <sastre>

Thanks. But --

Sorry, I've been stupid.

Of course the question is what about 26. R6d5 Bxd5 27. Rxd5 g5.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sastre: <psmith> 26.R6d5 Bxd5 27.Rxd5 g5 28.Nh4 f6 29.Bf3 Qf7 30.Nhf5 Qg6 31.Nd6 Re6 32.Rd1 Kh8 33.Bg4 (d=22/+0.90).
Jul-09-11  qqdos: <psmith> Thanks for you thoughtful piece. I was trying to convince you that 26.R1d5!! is a quicker win than 26.Nd4, when Black could struggle on for quite a number of moves. Whether human or machine, after 26.R1d5 I believe Black would resign by move 28. or 29. As a human and with hindsight (!), I think Reti might well concede that he did not play the best move. <Sastre> Thanks also for your contributions.
Jul-09-11  DrMAL: <qqdos> Agreed on all accounts. Nice to see some friendly chess banter rather than some sort of personal trashing. When one examines historical evidence, particularly Alekhine's comment that 26.Nd4 was the "most compelling move" it helps to consider that this game was a huge shocker, everyone at that tournament was completely stunned by Reti's win.

In any event, if you and <psmith> and others want to look at another game I have analyzed, I am most interested on comments regarding Judit Polgar vs Karpov, 2003 cheers.

Jun-09-12  Wyatt Gwyon: What a dirty little pun.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Reti's score sheet :
Dec-02-13  erniecohen: I didn't see any followup on the suggestion (from 6 years ago) of 27...♖xe3 28. fxe3 ♘e5}, which seems like it might save the game, e.g. 29. ♕c1 ♘g4 30. ♘f3 ♕xb5.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eduardo Bermudez: Ninety years ago !
Apr-08-14  JimNorCal: <whiteshark>: "Reti's score sheet"

It appears that Reti started to write Alekhine ("Al") and then crossed it out to write "Capablanca".

I guess that even for strong GMs, players on the level of Alekhine, Capa and Lasker all look alike :)

Dec-28-14  thegoodanarchist: Reti takes the first serious win from Capa in about a decade.

Richard could have quoted George Costanza from "Seinfeld", when George was lying about designing the Guggenheim addition:

"It really didn't take me that long."

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