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Alexander Alekhine vs Henri Weenink
Prague Olympiad (1931), Prague CSR, rd 9, Jul-17
Slav Defense: Quiet Variation. Schallopp Defense (D12)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jan-23-06  micartouse: A great example of a kingside attack using the "bayonet" g-pawn as Vukovic describes it in Art of Attack in Chess.

5 ... Bxb1? is ugly and totally inexcusable! White gets the 2 bishops and the center with ease.

12. b4! is a star move. It prevents ...c5, gains queenside space, and plans a rook lift. World Champions always play aggressively on both sides of the board.

Black missed a chance to free up his play a bit with 15 ... e5.

The queen moves from 18-20 are all made with tempo. That clearly illustrates White's ownership of the position.

The tricky point of 22 ... Qd6 is that if 23. g5, then 23 ... Qd5. Therefore, White plays 23. Bg6! instead, protecting the queen again with tempo.

The attack was so brutal that it probably could have been executed many different ways, and it required no sacrifices. The side variations contain some combinative play, but even those were routine kingside sacs.

The best part of the game for me though is Alekhine's note to 22. g4: "This little pawn threatens by its further advance to set on fire the black King's residence - and cannot possibly be stopped from that dark design." That's cold!

Aug-01-08  CharlesSullivan: Alekhine missed the decisive 22.♗xh7! ♔xh7 23.♘g5+ ♗xg5 24.♗xg5 and now Black has nothing better than giving up the exchange with 24...Kg8 25.Bxd8 since 24...♘f6 leads to 25.♗xf6! gxf6 26.♖h3! ♕g7 27.♖g3 ♕f8 28.♕g6+ ♔h8 29.♖h3 winning. After Alekhine played 22.g4?, Black could have avoided losing material in the short term with 22.♘df8! -- but White, of course, still has a better position.
Mar-24-10  thegoodanarchist: <micartouse>

Alekhine's Greatest Games of Chess is filled with wonderful annotations, as you know.

For example, in this game with Dr. Vidmar:

Alekhine vs Vidmar, 1911

After 31...Bf1, Alekhine writes "Black has no satisfactory defence and so he can without danger indulge in this little pleasantry."

Mar-24-10  micartouse: <Black has no satisfactory defence and so he can without danger indulge in this little pleasantry.>

lol I remember buying this book in 2001 and being dazzled by his haughty arrogant tone. The games themselves are like poetry. He's always been my favorite of the champions. I'm one of those many Alekhine fans who for whatever reason plays really clean, simple, and defensive chess.

Apr-04-10  thegoodanarchist: <micartouse>

What struck me about the book was how early in the game that AA would pronounce the opponent's position as "lost", "strategically lost", or "compromised">

I looked at the positions and they looked fine to me!

This is when I realized I would never be a GM.

Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: I have NEVER seem a game where Bx unmoved knight has been a good move. In the opening, I mean.

Always a blunder!

Jul-09-15  thegoodanarchist: <offramp:>

That is a fascinating observation. I will watch for Bx unmoved knight from now on and see if the player who cedes the bishop pair is justly flayed for doing so.

Jul-10-15  RookFile: I think Bxb1 is ok when the game goes like this:

1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Bf5 4. Qb3 Qb6 5. cd5

click for larger view

Now you play 6....Bxb1! to avoid a bad bishop in the coming endgame.

You need to be very careful about this, there is a beautiful opening trap involving at least the loss of a pawn if you mix up your move order. See this game:

Schlechter vs J Perlis, 1911

But, in this specific situation after 6.....Bxb1 first, black is ok, as in this example:

A Riazantsev vs I Popov, 2005

The basic problem with Bxb1 against in the Alekhine game is that the queens are still going to be on the board. There ain't going to be an endgame any time soon. Instead you get Alekhine's two bishops pointing towards black's king.

Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Here's another loss for the B takes unmoved knight side. Tartakower vs Capablanca, 1924. Great game!
Jul-10-15  RookFile: That was bad for Tartakower. There is a Keres vs. Fischer game where Kere's Bxb8 should have ended in a draw, but Keres blundered.
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Here's a good pun for this game: Weenink Madness. Weenink is pronounced a bit like feignink.
Jul-10-15  thegoodanarchist: <offramp: Here's another loss for the B takes unmoved knight side. Tartakower vs Capablanca, 1924. Great game!>

Unlike <RookFile>'s example of the Keres - Fischer game, in which the BxN capture should not have caused defeat, the game you have provided has a key move, 13...b5, made possible by the recapture of the B on the b file by the Black Queen's rook.

Thus I think it strongly supports your case. Maybe I will look for the Keres - Fischer game mentioned by <RookFile>

Aug-24-19  thegoodanarchist: < offramp: I have NEVER seem a game where Bx unmoved knight has been a good move. In the opening, I mean.

Always a blunder!>

I wish I had remembered this comment in my most recent tournament, where I made this exact blunder and was rapidly annihilated.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Chutzpah: Vukovic says Black has nothing better than 9…h6, but 9…Nd7 completes development and is fine. 9.Bxh7 just trades the bishop for three pawns after 9…g6. The king has an escape route via d8. It’s not pretty but it holds.

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