|Pawn and Two: Stoltz was a last minute replacement for Rubinstein at Bled 1931.|
In the tournament book, Hans Kmoch, the manager of the tournament, tells how he was responsible for inviting, negotiating, and getting the commitment from the 14 participants.
Euwe had declined to play because of lack of time, and Sultan Khan also declined because the Bled tournament would conflict with the British championship.
Rubinstein was not satisfied with the ordinary letter of invitation, and wanted a printed program of the tournament, and time for reflection before deciding.
The tournament committee had recommended as additional candidates, Gosta Stoltz and Lajos Steiner.
The tournament was scheduled to begin at 9:00 a.m, Sunday, August 23rd. When Rubinstein had not confirmed his invitation by 11:30 on the evening of the 16th, Kmoch sent an invitation by telegram to Stoltz in Sweden.
On the morning of the 17th, Stoltz confirmed by telegram his agreement to play. On the evening of the 17th, Rubinstein confirmed his agreement to play. Unfortunately for Rubinstein, it was too late. Stoltz received the final spot in the tournament, and then had to make a hurried trip to Bled, in order to arrive in time for the first round.
Kmoch replied to Rubinstein by telegram that he was too late. He noted this was a very upsetting incident, but he believed they had no choice but to give the final place to Stoltz.
Kmoch noted that, <it turned out that the invitation of the young Swedish master was a fortunate occurrence, since he achieved an outstanding result.>
Bled 1931 was a good tournament for Stoltz. He was one of the prizewinners, finishing 4th/7th with Flohr, Kashdan and Vidmar, behind Alekhine, Bogoljubov, and Nimzowitsch. Stoltz had a score of +8 -7 =11.
Two of his wins at Bled were against Tartakover.
In round 4, Stoltz vs Tartakower, 1931 was a tense struggle that was equal at the end of the first break. The time control at Bled was 2 1/2 hours for the first 35 moves, and 15 moves per hour thereafter. The first session began at 9 a.m. and finshed at 2 p.m.. The second session started at 4:30 p.m.
At the end of the first session Stoltz sealed the move 39.Re6!.
click for larger view
The rook cannot be captured, however Fritz indicates the position is equal after either 39....Qd4 or 39...Qc3. The move 39...Qg5 is also approximately equal.
Tartakover played 39...Qd4, but considered this move to be an error. He recommended 39...Qc3. In the game, after 39...Qd4 40.Qc6, Kmoch indicated that 40...Bb6 was a serious error. He recommended 40...Bf6, and stated that Black would not be faced with any threats, and the game should result in a draw.
Fritz prefers 40...Bf6 with an equal position, but indicates that 40...Bb6 was also adequate for the draw.
After 41.Re8! (threat 42.Qg6+!), Black had only one move to hold the draw, and that was 41...Qd6! 42.Qxb5 Rd8.
After 41...Qxf2+?? 42.Kh3 Qf1+ 43.Kh4, Stoltz will win decisive material. After 47.Qe4+, if 47...Kxg8, it is mate in three.
In round 17, Tartakover lost another game to Stoltz Tartakower vs Stoltz, 1931. Tartakover had a winning position early on, and as Kmoch noted, could simply have won by proceeding with 17.Ne6!. If then 17...Kd7 or 17...Rc8, White can reply 18.Bc5!.
Tartakover retained the advantage for several additional moves, but eventually the game became near equal, and then Stoltz gained the advantage.
At move 37, necessary was 37.Nf4, 37...Rf2 38.Bc1, or 37.Rd3, 37...Rxg2 38.Bf4, with drawing chances. Instead, Tartakover played 37.cxd6??. The tournament book indicated he was expecting 37...cxd6 38.Nf4 Rf2 39.Nd3!, with equal chances.
In this position,
click for larger view
Stoltz found the only winning move, 37...c5!!. If 38.Rd3, then 38...c4 39.Rd4 c5 40.Rd5 c3 wins. Tartakover tried 38.Nf2 Rf2 39.Re4, but after 39...Rxd2 he was clearly lost.