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James Mason vs Fritz Riemann
Berlin (1881), Berlin GER, rd 7, Sep-06
Indian Game: General (A45)  ·  0-1


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find similar games 2 more J Mason/F Riemann games
sac: 29...Rbb8 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: A very good defensive achievement by Fritz Riemann.

Mason does not play the opening very well but Riemann plays it worse. Sort of like a wounded Hippopotamus.


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Now Riemann was obviously intending to castle. Mason tried to stop that. He played 9.e5! Riemann was forced to play 9...Nh5.

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Here is a knight at the edge that really gives Black problems. But please, don't worry too much about it. /SPOLIER ALERT/ that knight is still around at move 29.

White retreated his bishop with 10.Be3. Now Riemann had to contend with a very serious threat of ♙g2-g4 which traps the ♘h5. So he retreated his ♗on g7 to f8, then played 12...Ng7.

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White clearly has a great attacking position. He could have played 13.Nd5! as both f7 and a8 are weak spots.

After 13...d5! the worst is over for Riemann. he has sealed up the centre and avoided immediate loss.

Mason gets another chance at move 23.

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He played 23.Nxg6+, but 23.Rxh5! leads, after some exchanges on h5, to a difficult to parry attack by White's queen and rook.

But even after 23.Nxg6+ Black has problems. He deals with them extremely well. White wins back his knight and at move 32 the position looks level.

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Later, after 41.Kc2

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things look even more drawish.

Riemann continues to play well. Mason does not get his king out fast enough. After 49.Rc5

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we have a pawn race! Yippee!

Black plays 51...Rh4

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Now Mason plays a pretty bad move. 52.Re2? This puts the rook right in the path of the pawns, giving them chances to win tempi. Wasn't that a type of organ?


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53...Ke5! Riemann plays the whole final part of the game really well.

Apart from the early opening Riemann played very good chess. Mason must have been very annoyed; an extra point would have given him 3rd= instead of 5th= at Berlin.

Riemann probably thought about this game for years. He was only about 22 when it was played, and Mason was a top-5 in the world player. Here he learned a lesson, don't shuffle your rook over into the path of connected passed pawns.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Fred Reinfeld would have proclaimed White's position dead won after nine moves. Period. End of story.
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