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Gioachino Greco vs NN
"Piano Lessons" (game of the day Apr-11-2016)
Miscellaneous Game (1620), ?, rd 9
Italian Game: Classical. Closed Variation (C53)  ·  1-0


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sac: 9.Nxg5 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  InspiredByMorphy: 8. ...g5 was an overextension upon which white promptly answers with the mighty 9.Nxg5! Nice queen sac too.
Oct-20-05  DeepBlade: InspiredByMorphy, thanks for pointing that out. The game realy turns at that point, the Bishop which was about to be captured is now threating the Queen, and has snatched a pawn.

What also makes me frown is the pawn with the lust to expand, and is promoted to a Queen. In my opinion, Black plays too many pawn moves, which creates a weakness. Greco just simply allowed him to promote because he already has the mating material, he was just setting it up.

To cut a long story short, Black exchanges its actively defending Queen for a remote/useless Queen. And Greco launches his mating attack.

Sep-27-07  wolfmaster: 8...Be6 or ...Bg4 would clearly have been better.
Jul-28-11  Oliveira: I don't think Greco has chosen the best course of action with 19.♗b5+. The best line I found is 19.♕xe7+ ♔c6 20.♕e4+ ♔c5 [20... ♔d7 21.♗b5+] 21.♕d5+ ♔b4 22. ♕b5#.
Nov-15-11  AnalyzeThis: This is a brilliant game, Tal would be proud.
Aug-01-15  Catholic Bishop: haha I love Greco vs NN games, and this is probably the best one of them all
Apr-11-16  hypercorby: After 9.Nxg5, I imagined this game was played in an Irish tavern. Love the para-vision of Greco.
Apr-11-16  newzild: <Oliveira> You appear to be correct, as after 19. Bb5+ Ke6 (instead of the game continuation 19...Nc6??) 20. Qxe7+ Kd5 there is no quick mate, and the other attempt 20. Re1+ Qe5 lasts longer than 22 moves, viz: 21. Rxe5+ dxe5 22. Qxe7+ Kd5 23. Qxd5#
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: As with all Greco games we don't know if this was actually played over the board or if it was constructed. It's a strong attack all the same.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheTamale: Is Black sunk after 8) ...g5? He seems to play pretty well for a few moves thereafter and gets sliced up nonetheless, leading my Monday brain to think there was no recovery from that initial blunder.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Black gains a second queen...but aided by a pin...white's first queen mates.
Apr-11-16  The Kings Domain: Nice to have a charming li'l miniature by old Greco as game of the day. Clever and impressive mate by the Chess pioneer.
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: 400 years ago it was not considered impolite to play to mate, I suppose.
Premium Chessgames Member
  scutigera: Finally, a pun with semantic content! It's been a while. Nice game, too.
Apr-11-16  drleper: <thegoodanarchist: 400 years ago it was not considered impolite to play to mate, I suppose.>

Depends on the position though; if the opponent has played a brilliant attack it can be a nice gesture to allow mate on the board. But if it's obviously lost and it's going to take a while then yeah, it would be tiresome to drag it out.

Apr-12-16  tatarch: 16...Qf7 could have made this a little more interesting.
Apr-12-16  Ayaend: <Oliveira> I found exactly the same thing as you ! Better move for White pieces at 19 is Qxe7+
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: <thegoodanarchist: 400 years ago it was not considered impolite to play to mate, I suppose.>

Even a hundred years ago, it was customary to announce a forced mate, at which point the players would usually shake hands. The game score would then often include the last few moves up to the mate, even though they were not played in the game.

Greco's games are unusual in that we don't know if they were ever played. It is entirely possible that they were made up as examples of good play.

So the fact that the game score goes all the way to mate does not mean that the moves were necessarily played. Or that the game ever even happened.

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