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Vera Menchik vs George Alan Thomas
"A Lady's Touch" (game of the day Apr-17-05)
Podebrady (1936)  ·  Slav Defense: Modern Line (D11)  ·  1-0
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Kibitzer's Corner
Apr-17-05  soberknight: Nice win by Menchik. I guess it's a good weekend for women chessplayers...woohoo first post!
Apr-17-05  fgh: Nice game. Is enjoyed the role the c5 knight played here.
Apr-17-05  mynameisrandy: Wasn't Thomas the guy who mockingly said that players who lose to Menchik should be in "The Vera Menchik Club" only to lose to her right after?
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: Actually that whole story is probably a myth (and sounds suspiciously like the story of Tarrasch trying to keep Yates out of the 1910 Hamburg tournament, only to lose to him, and Nimzowitch trying to keep Capablanca out of the 1911 San Sebastian tournament, only to lose to him, etc. -- are either of those true?) Winter wrote a column about it.

Thomas was supposed to be a very good sport.

Apr-17-05  mynameisrandy: Ah. Well, that's very good then.

I don't know about the Tarrasch/Yates bit, but in 1911 Ossip Bernstein did object to Capa's presence in the San Sebastian tournament, according to Capa himself. They played in the first round and Capablanca won, proving to the participants that he would not be a whipping boy at his debut.

Capa's quote on the matter: "Some of the masters objected to my entry... One of them was Dr. Bernstein. I had the good fortune to play him in the first round and beat him in such fasion as to obtain the Rothschild prize for the most brilliant game of the tournament."

Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: <mynameisrandy><keypusher> Here are the two games in question

Tarrasch vs Yates, 1910

Capablanca vs O Bernstein, 1911

Apr-17-05  khense: Can black survive with 50...Kg8, followed by RA8 and RE8?
Apr-17-05  WorldChampeen: Murder stalkers have stalked, molested around here, I know my name is Tom, but it is an insult to put up with any stalking that might be kind in nature, compared to the murder and rape branding that has been occurring,
Apr-17-05  Swapmeet: Ok then.
Apr-17-05  Swapmeet: <khense> Black will survive a little longer in that case, but white will scoop up the queenside pawns and still have enough to win.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Karpova: <WorldChampeen>
so that's what you have to say about this game?
Apr-17-05  drukenknight: it looks like black's K needs to be in front of the passed pawn. Maybe instead of swapping R, which loses a tempo, he can get his K over there..?
Apr-17-05  halcyonteam: actually both sides play good, with black making a small mistake in endgame (swapping) which costs the game
Apr-17-05  MarvinTsai: Why not just 45...ke8, then black can stop the passed pawn, and win a queen-side pawn?
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: <MarvinTsai> I think black blundered and underestimated the power of white's king pawn.

Black called the operator and said: Operator,I've been cut off!"

Premium Chessgames Member
  akiba82: My understanding was that it was Vidmar, not Thomas who suggested a Vera Menchik club for those who lost to Menchik. The story goes that he became the first member! Perhaps someone else will be able to document this.
Premium Chessgames Member
  akiba82: So far cant find an official game where Menchik defeated Vidmar, so maybe it was another player who started the Menchik club.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ajile: This is a Stonewall Dutch not a Slav.
Apr-17-05  cade: Surely 50...Kg8 holds
Apr-17-05  Madman99X: I got bored so I did some analysis. (With the help of Chessmaster 9000) Please feel free to criticize, refute, and otherwise tear apart my work, as I don't consider it to be perfect by any means.

Black let's white off the hook with 41. fxg4:

41. fxg4? Rb2!
42. b5 cxb5
43. axb5 Rxb5
44. Kf2 Rb2+
45. Ke3 Ke6

Black's king blocks the passed e-pawn, and black menaces with twin passed pawns on the a and b files.

White avoids this possibility if she plays:

41. Rxg4 Rh1+
42. Kg2 R4h2+
43. Kg3 Rb2
44. Re3 Ke6
45. f4 Rg1+
46. Kh4 Rf1

This seems an equal position to me.

In answer to Marvin Tsai:

If 45... Ke8! then

46. Rh3 Rxb4
47. Rxh7 Rxd4
48. Kf3 Rxa4
49. Rxb7 Re4
50. Rc7 a5
51. Rxc6 Rxe5
52. Rc5 a4
53. Ra5 Re4
54. Rxd5

This position draws.

It looks like white has a win with 46. e6! (I didn't check every possiblity with this line, but it looks tight to me.)

46. e6! Re1
47. Rf7+ Kg8
48. Re7 Re4
49. g5! Rxd4
50. Rxb7 Re4
51. Rb6 Kf8
52. Rxc6 Rxb4
53. Rxa6 Rg4+
54. Kf3 Rxg5
55. Kf4 h6
56. Ra7 d4
57. Ke4 h5
58. d5 h4
59. Kf4 Rg1
60. a6 Ra1
61. Rf7 Ke8
62. a7 a3
63. Ke3 d2
64. Kxd2 h3
65. Rh7 Ra2+
66. Kc3 Ra3+
67. Kb4 Ra1
68. Rxh3 Rxa7
69. Rh8+ Ke7
70. Rh7 skewers the king against the rook leading to a king/rook endgame.

46... axb5? seems to be a blunder to me.

46... cxb5
47. axb5 Rxb5

Advantage to black who has two deadly passed pawns on the a and b files again.

If 49... Rb1+?!

Then it looks like the white king cannot leave the vicinity of e1, e2, f1, f2 safely, and black can draw through perpetual check. (I didn't play all of these out, but I don't see a good alternative for white.)

Finally, in answer to cade, 50... Kg8 serves, I think, only to prolong the misery.

50... Kg8
51. Rxb7 Kf8
52. Rxh7 Rd2
53. Rf7+ Ke8
54. g5 Rd1+
55. Kf2 Rd2+
56. Kf3 Rd3+
57. Kf4 Rxd4+
58. Ke5 Re4+
59. Kd6 d4
60. Rh7 Kf8
61. e7+ Kg8
62. Rh6

And black must sacrifice the rook to stop white from queening her e-pawn.

That's all for today. I apologize to if I took up too much space on your server. :-)

Apr-24-05  patzer2: Black's 49...Ra2?? was a blunder. He missed a draw by threefold repetition with 49... Rb1+! 50. Ke2 Rb2+ 51. Ke1 Rb1+ 52. Ke2 Rb2+ 53. Ke1 Rb1+ 54. Ke2 Rb2=.
Apr-24-05  patzer2: Of course after the 49...Ra2?? blunder, White has a winning queening combination after 50. Rf7+ Kg6? (50...Kg8! puts up maximum resistance and offers practical drawing chances) 51. Rf8!
Jul-14-09  sfm: <khense: Can black survive with 50...Kg8, followed by RA8 and RE8?> As far as I can see he has a fighting chance. White comes up a pawn ahead, but in rook endgames this, as we know, is frequently not enough.
Mar-26-11  hottyboy90: It was Albert Becker that suggested the Vera Menchik club!
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