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Stefano Rosselli del Turco vs Akiba Rubinstein
Baden-Baden (1925), Baden-Baden GER, rd 8, Apr-25
Bishop's Opening: Blanel Gambit (C23)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
Apr-20-06  stanleys: No kibitzing here??It's a real classic!
Dec-15-06  stanleys: Razuvaev's comment on 25...c5! "Taking the desicion to play such a move is harder than sacrifying 20 bishops on h7"
Dec-15-06  Archives: What other annotations does Razuvaev give on this game?
Jun-18-07  Karpova: The gamescore is wrong:

<Karsten Müller (Hamburg, Germany) has been analysing Rosselli v Rubinstein, Baden Baden, 1925 and asks:

‘Did White play axb5 at some point in the endgame? If not, Rubinstein could have played ...bxa4 followed by ...Rc4 on several occasions. In the game-score as given in the ChessBase Megabase White never took on b5, which seems very strange to me.’

The score as given in virtually every source we have consulted (including pages 49-50 of Tarrasch’s tournament book) does indeed leave open the recurring possibility of ...Rc4, but we have a solution to offer: at move 42 White’s pawn move was not a4 but a3. The latter move is given on page 81 of the Russian tournament book by N.I. Grekov (Moscow, 1927)> (the link contains the full gamescore)

I'll submit the suggestion to <> but write this one down in case someone with an incorrect gamescore wonders why <> has a different one.

Oct-17-07  notyetagm: This game is the subject of Thursday's lecture on the server by Dennis Monokroussos.

Akiba Rubinstein and the Frankenstein-Dracula Variation

17.10.2007 – The Polish master (1882–1961) was one of the greatest players never to become world champion, or even get a chance to try. In our Thursday night Playchess lecture Dennis Monokroussos shows us a game which teaches us a lot about the so-called Frankenstein-Dracula Variation and about an endgame played in superb Rubinstein style. Nine p.m. ET.

Dennis Monokroussos writes:

Akiba (or Akiva) Rubinstein was one of the greatest players never to become world champion, and possibly the greatest player never given the opportunity to contest for the title. In the years from around 1909 to 1912, he was probably the strongest player in the world, capable of winning every tournament and defeating all rivals – and he just about did. He was a brilliant openings innovator who won beautiful games of every sort, but he's probably best remembered today for his exquisite endgame technique. Accurate, artistic and patient, his endgames offer a model for aspiring players to learn from even today.

One of the great masters: Akiba Rubinstein

As you may have surmised, we'll look at one such ending in this week's show, from his game with Stefano Rosselli del Turco from the Baden-Baden tournament of 1925. Rosselli, with White, started the game on a threatening note with 1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bc4 Nxe4 4.Qh5, seemingly inviting the so-called Frankenstein-Dracula Variation with 4...Nd6 5.Bb3 Nc6 6.Nb5 g6 7.Qf3 f5 8.Qd5 Qe7 9.Nxc7+ Kd8 10.Nxa8 b6. It's a very exciting line, with Black enjoying a lead in development and central space in return for the exchange and a pawn. Alas, it turned out that Rosselli was bluffing, and instead of 5.Bb3 he played the insipid 5.Qxe5+, perhaps thinking that after 5...Qe7 6.Qxe7+ Bxe7 he'd achieve a quick and painless draw with his great opponent.

If so, he was badly mistaken. Though material was even, the board was queenless and the pawn structure was symmetrical, Rubinstein proved that there was plenty of play left in the position. It took him a long time to win, but as we investigate the game, we'll see that it wasn't a dry effort at all. Better still, we can use Rubinstein's ideas in our own games – especially against draw-eager opponents. Maybe the position after move six would be easily drawn in a world championship competition, but for mortals like us – and Rosselli – holding the game against a Rubinstein is not automatic.

I think you'll enjoy the game, learn a lot about the ending, and be entertained by our brief foray into Frankenstein-Dracula theory, too. So tune in this Thursday night at 9 p.m. ET - hope to see you then! >

Apr-01-12  Karpova: After 57...Nxd2!

click for larger view

<Rubinstein plays concretely. Boris Gelfand points to this game as an antecedent for Fischer's similar trade of a beautiful knight for a bad bishop in game seven of his match with Petrosian.>

Fischer vs Petrosian, 1971

Source: Page 147 of J. Donaldson and N. Minev 'The Life and Games of Akiva Rubinstein - Volume 2: The Later Years', 2nd edition, Milforld, USA, 2011.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Consummate technique by Rubinstein in exploiting his advantage of strong knight in a fixed pawn formation vs bad bishop, then selecting the precise moment to exchange the piece, which was holding White's game together, hobbled though it was.
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: An absolute master class on the ending by Rubinstein!

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