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Emanuel Lasker vs Rudolf Johannes Loman
"Loman Mythology" (game of the day Mar-21-12)
London (1903)  ·  Spanish Game: Morphy Defense. Mackenzie Variation (C77)  ·  0-1
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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <sfm> I was just fooling around with the Nalimov tablebase in this position:

click for larger view

Turns out this is indeed a draw, but a similar arrangement on any other file or rank is a win for White. The basic reason seems to be the added points of attack. As the position moves to the left along the files, White's king is able to penetrate along the right-hand edge. As the position moves down along the ranks, White's queen can penetrate from behind.

Apr-30-10  abhishikt: got it ... easy..
May-01-10  chesskidnate: <OBIT> yep notably to win black eventually would have to sac his a pawn in the position but yep
Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: Hey wasn't Loman playing Black?!

If it was a Simul, then in Simuls, the masters usually have the White pieces.

According to Krabb:

This is "Loman's move" - the clever trick at the end of this game.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: Also think Loman was black:

Mar-21-12  LoveThatJoker: Lasker didn't play 33. Rf8+ winning prosaically (probably due to the desire to dazzle as expressed by <Phony Benoni>)!

Then he missed his chance of at least having a shot at saving the game via 37. Ke3 as discussed previously by a few veteran kibitzers.

No disrespect to the great Champ, but surely this wasn't his best!

At least the game continuation allowed Loman's lovely checking manoeuvres (coupled with 39...Rh4!!) to become part of the Classics.

No pun intended as it is related to "Loman's Mythology", of course.



Mar-21-12  piltdown man: Horrendous pun for a magnificent game.
Mar-21-12  Llawdogg: Amazing turning of the tables!
Mar-21-12  Antiochus: Nice pun, like Michael Palin in 'Life of Brian'.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: "It is a fact that chess games and chess positions have a hold upon many, a hold strong enough to make them burst into applause and to cause these games and positions to be preserved in books and to be fondly remembered."

~ Emanuel Lasker

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: The pun makes sense. :)

Also, Lasker seems to be losing a lot of white games "recently".

Mar-21-12  goodevans: <Llawdogg: Amazing turning of the tables!>

In more ways than one: Up until recently had Lasker as black in this game!

Mar-21-12  Garech: Great game - especially the endgame, of course. There were some inaccuracies throughout, for example:

27...Nxd4? Was good, but missed the winning Rxg2+! instead, which is best as long as it is followed up correctly, I.e.

28.Qxg2 Nxd4!

click for larger view

and black is winning but it requires immense calculating skills to solve the complications throughout.

31.gxh7+ was also winning for white, and 31...Qc6 is the losing blunder for black (although Loman turned the tables).

As other's have pointed out 37.Kg3 was a terrible blunder - e3 was fine for the king - but at least it resulted in this wonderful endgame surprise!

Indicentally, I had a lesson with GM Baburin a year or so ago, and he set me a very similar position to solve as that at move 39 for black. I'm happy to say I found it - and even shared it with some friends. I had no idea it came from an actual game!



Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Instead of moving the king forward,white should have gone after the rook with his king. Instead,he allowed the black pawn to vacate the g7 square with check and catch the pawn with the king.
Mar-21-12  Snehalshekatkar: What about 37 Ke2!! ?
Mar-21-12  screwdriver: "Chess is no certainty. And when it becomes one, Chess will have ceased to be useful." Emmanuel Lasker (page 15 from Lasker's Manuel of Chess.)
Mar-21-12  Memethecat: Doesn't 37Ke3 Rc3+ 38Kd2 win for white?
Mar-21-12  Steven87: The winner of the game is the player who makes the next-to-last mistake. Savielly Tartakower
Premium Chessgames Member
  waustad: Well, he managed to avoid the draw.
Mar-21-12  tivrfoa: what a beautiful defense!
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <Memethecat: Doesn't 37Ke3 Rc3+ 38Kd2 win for white?>

Maybe. My guess is that Lasker didn't want to allow 37...Rxg2. If Black can get a position like this, it is a tablebase draw:

click for larger view

Jan-01-13  sneaky pete: A new link to Loman's column of January 3, 1904 (lower half of the page):
May-31-14  ljfyffe: Loman defeated John de Soyres in 1903 Dutch tournament.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: From a simul at the City of London Chess Club in London, England on December 16, 1903.

Lasker's score was +13=4-3.

Nov-17-15  Marcelo Bruno: <kingscrusher> Curiously enough, I found in Fine's "The World's Greatest Chess Games" and in an old Brazilian newspaper that indicate Lasker playing Black and Amateur playing White. Fine quotes: "The archwizard saves a lost game!"
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