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Alexander Fritz vs James Mason
"Fritz, the early version" (game of the day Jun-26-2004)
Nuremberg (1883), Nuremberg GER, rd 1, Jul-16
French Defense: Classical Variation. Richter Attack (C13)  ·  1-0


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Given 7 times; par: 27 [what's this?]

Annotations by Emanuel Lasker.      [80 more games annotated by Lasker]

explore this opening
find similar games 2 more A Fritz/J Mason games
sac: 10.Bxh7+ PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-26-04  jmcd2002: <> Why is this called a Bird's Opening? Looks French to me....
Premium Chessgames Member
  iron maiden: Why is this categorized as "Bird's Opening?"
Jun-26-04  suenteus po 147: Whoever entered in the game put it down as a Bird's Opening. I have no idea why, though. The f pawn never moves the whole game.
Premium Chessgames Member
  iron maiden: Probably just a typo.
Jun-26-04  themindset: this is a french defense, will probably fix it soon.
Jun-26-04  themindset: my crafty seems to think that 11...Kh6 would hold, i'm going to let it run overnight because it's only at a depth of 13 right now, but it's interesting.

depth=13 3/5 +0.28 11. ... Kh6 12. Qd2 Qc8 13. O-O-O Na6 14. Qf4 Qd7 15. Nxe6+ Kh7 16. Nxf8+ Rxf8 17. Rh3 Kg8 18. Rg3 Qe6 Nodes: 192456649 NPS: 784065

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: The moral of this one is when you are playing a game that requires a counterattack on the queenside-it must not be too slow or it will die on the vine.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Zembla: Fritz was going to get his double rook sacrifice one way or another!
Premium Chessgames Member
  akiba82: This game was played in the Nuremberg 1883 tournament.
Jun-26-04  poolookoo: What about 13. ...Qxg5?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessical: <poolookoo> If <13...Qxg5> 14.Nf4+!

(a) 14...Qxf4 15.Qh5 mate
(b) 14...Kf5 15.Qd3+ Kg4 16.Qh3+ Kxf4 17.Qf3 mate

Premium Chessgames Member
  crafty: 11...♔h6 12. ♕d2 ♕c8 13. O-O-O ♘a6 14. ♕f4 ♕e8 15. ♘xe6+ =   (eval 0.02; depth 13 ply; 1500M nodes)
Jun-26-04  poolookoo: <Chessical> Thanks, I just overlooked on how the king would actually make an escape.

How about a Rook sac at 14. ...Rxf6

Jun-27-04  themindset: my crafty, at depth of 18:

depth=18 1/5 +1.05 11. ... Kh6 12. Qd2 Qe8 13. Nxe6+ Kh7 14. Nxc7 Qc6 15. Nxa8 Bxa8 16. O-O-O Bb7 17. h5 Bb4 18. h6 gxh6 19. Qf4 Bxc3 20. bxc3 Nodes: 3663382826 NPS: 53022

Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessical: <poolookoo> From the stem game after:

<14...Rxf6> 15.Nf4+ Kf7 16.Qh5+ Ke7 17.exf6+ gxf6 18.Qg4; Black appears to be completely lost.

Premium Chessgames Member
  akiba82: Does someone know which game was the first to feature the Greek Gift bishop sacrifice?
Jun-18-07  srinivas6195: i doubt was alexander fritz better or deep fritz 10 is better
Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: Other sources give a slightly different move order: 5.Bxf6 Bxf6 6.Nf3 0-0 7.Bd3 b6 8.h4 Bb7 9.e5 Be7 10.Bxh7+ [transposing back to the version here]

This actually makes a little more sense for both sides. It also makes sense of Lasker's comment that ...Ba6 would have been better than ...Bb7 -- if white can play Bxh7+ at once, then it makes little difference where black develops his bishop, but if white has yet to play e5 then ...Ba6 threatens to exchange LSBs.

Feb-26-09  WhiteRook48: a human Fritz! This looks like a Rybka demolition (or a Fritz one)
Mar-02-09  WhiteRook48: I think that Alexander Fritz is better, judging from a game.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: We may have an inaccurate score here. Sellman's column in the <Baltimore American> for August 12, 1883 gives this version:

<1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Be7 5.Bxf6 Bxf6 6.Nf3 0-0 7.Bd3 b6 8.h4 Bb7 9.e5 Be7 10.Bxh7+ Kxh7 11.Ng5+ Kg6 12.Ne2 Bxg5 13.hxg5 f5 14.gxf6 Rh8 15.Nf4+ Kf7 16.Qg4 Rxh1+ 17.Kd2 gxf6

click for larger view

18.Qg6+ Ke7 19.Qg7+ Ke8 20.Qg8+ Ke7 21.Qxe6+ Kf8 22.Rxh1 Bc8 23.Rh8+ Kg7 24.Rh7+ Kxh7 25.Qf7+ Kh8 26.Ng6#> 1-0

This version contains the opening transposition mentioned earlier by <Domdaniel> but the big divergence comes at the diagrammed position. This score has Fritz eventually reaching the finish given in our version, but going the long way round to do it.

Which is correct? The long version is given also by the 1883 <British Chess Magazine>, p.298.

Lasker did make errors in the scores of games on which he commented. For example, in his <Manual of Chess> he gave a different finish to the "Evergreen Game" (Anderssen vs Dufresne, 1852) than is found in other sources.

Lasker's version is more accurate, which probably argues for the authenticity of the longer version--who would make up a weaker continuation? However, if my Bozo 0.5 computer is to be believed, neither 18.Qg6+ or 18.Qxe6+ are best move for White in the diagram.

Aug-19-12  Dethrin: <Phony Benoni>
There really is no coming back for black at this point, as 18.Rxh1, 18.Qxe6+, and 18.Qg6+ all lead to mate; almost every move is forced.

18.Rxh1 Qf8 19. Rh7+ Ke8 20.Qh5+ Kd8 21.Nxe6+ Kc8 22.Rxc7# (18...Qg8 won't save Black after 19.Qxe6+ Kf8 20.Ng6+ Qxg6 21.Rh8+ Kg7 22.Qg8#)

18.Qxe6+ Kg7 19.Rxh1 Qf8 20.Qg4+ Kf7 21.Rh7+ Ke8 22.Qg6+ Kd8 23.Ne6+ Kc8 24.Rxc7#

18.Qg6+ Ke7 19.Qg7+ Ke8 20.Qg8+ Ke7 21.Qxe6+ Kf8 22.Rxh1 Nd7 23.Rh8+ Kg7 24.Rh7+ Kxh7 25.Qf7+ Kh8 26.Ng6#

And on another note, 11...Kh6 would indeed keep black in the game.

Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: Several biographers have already questioned the movelist:

A Fritz vs J Mason, 1883 (kibitz #18)

A Fritz vs J Mason, 1883 (kibitz #21)

The German TB is online (see Calli), and this game is in it, of course:

<TB G-2 p86/104>

It has the move order given by Dom:

<7.Bd3 b6 8.h4 Bb7 9.e5 Be7>

and it indeed ends at 22...Bc8 with the comment

<Weiß setzt in 4 Zügen matt.> = <White mates in 4 moves>

The Germans seemed fond of announcing mates to end games during this era. I think Sellman just decided to spell it out for the benefit of his readers (we've seen this before).

I'd like confirmation about the Tpos in the opening, was that truly the order Lasker gave?

Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: BTW- Does Lasker's book really contain the following sentence on p5?

<"To try to understand its aspirations ... is a tribute to the genius of the white race.">

In reference to the game of chess.

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