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Isidor Gunsberg vs Nicholas MacLeod
6th American Chess Congress (1889), New York, NY USA, rd 36, May-13
King's Gambit: General (C30)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Feb-07-13  Fiona Macleod: such a violent game yet it lasted 92 moves!
Feb-07-13  Shams: <Fiona> Do you play as violently as your great-grandfather?
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: A quicker win is 73. Re4 .
Premium Chessgames Member

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Black allowed himself to be pushed around. He needed to kick back here with 53..d5+ 54 Kf3 Kf5 55 Ra5 Ke6 56 Kg4 Bc3 57 Rb5 Be5 58 Rb6+ Bd6 59 Kg5 d4 with resistance. The drama, however, was not yet over.

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The Knight’s file is critical but Gunsberg played 57 Rb8 instead of 57 Rg8! and after 57..Kf6 58 Ke4 Kf7 (58..Ke6 59 Rg6+) there is enough K-side space for 59 Rg5 Kf6 60 Rh5 and Black’s King either gets cut-off (60..Kg6 61 Rf5) or he must allow White to penetrate and set up the Rxe5 capture with his King driven away from the g8 Queening square.

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The meek 59..Kf6 allowed White to recover lost ground. 59..Kg4! stood up to the Rook.

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Here White can win with the waiting move 62 Rd3! (Zugzwang) obliging Black to put his King on an inferior square eg 62..Kg5 when 63 Rb3 is good. Instead, Gunsberg played 62 Rb3 immediately. Macleod obligingly retreated his King anyway but he could have waited with the Bishop: eg 62..Bf6 and if 63 Rh3 Bg7 again waiting.

After 63 Rb8 Kg4 would have done no good due to 64 Rg8+ and after 63..Kf6 64 Rg8 Gunsberg put into effect the strategy he could have implemented earlier with 57 Rg8

An instructive ending emphasising that the player who takes his chances gets the result.

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