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James Mason vs Henry Bird
Hastings (1895), Hastings ENG, rd 11, Aug-19
French Defense: Classical Variation. Richter Attack (C13)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-17-03  akiba82: The combination initiated with 32 f5! is most ingenious, utilizing as it does, pins on the e and g files simultaneously. This double pin motif is rarely seen. A great game by Mason!
Mar-17-05  akiba82: A remarkable game by the player of the day. Ofcourse Mason, as was his wont, cedes the two bishops prematurely with 5.Bf6. But Mason was sort of a rough and tumble combinational player who didn't place great emphasis on technique.
Premium Chessgames Member
  AgentRgent: <akiba82: a rough and tumble combinational player> Agreed, I've always felt that Mason's natural talent ranks among the best, but he disdained any serious study, choosing instead a close association with Beer and Ale
Mar-17-05  akiba82: <AgentRgent> Yes, regrettably. It's a shame he didn't get to play a match with Steinitz or Zukertort in 1882. He entered into negotiations with both but apparently had trouble raising the stake money. He had not yet fallen into alcohol abuse at the time. Probably some good games would have resulted had the matches come off, but as a Mason fan, I cant say I believe he would have defeated either Steinitz or Zukertort had he been given the opportunity.
Feb-06-06  fred lennox: 7...Kf8 reveals a recurrent weakness in Bird's strategy. He was sometimes too fond of flank attack. In general terms he could be too fond of oblique or indirect attacks. A more straightfoward approach would of come in handy from time to time. 7...0-0 is better. Now the KR has no future to be proud of.
Feb-06-06  aw1988: <fred lennox> In the French, Kf8 is a common motif.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn and Two: Tarrasch's notes to this game in the Hastings's tournament book state that 29. Bd7-b5? was the decisive error.

Fritz 9 shows 29 Bd7-b5? 30. Bd3xb5 a6xb5 31. h2-h3 as favoring White by (1.16)-(16 ply).

Instead, Fritz recommends for Black, 29. h4-h3 30. g2-g3 Be7-c5, favoring White by only (.42)-(16 ply).

Both Tarrasch & Fritz indicate that 30. Qb6xb5 is another mistake for Black. Fritz indicates playing it favors White by (1.84)-(17 ply).

32. f5. A beautiful final combination. <Tarrasch>

Feb-06-06  fred lennox: <aw1988>thanks for that. One thing i do admire about Bird is he reliezes the king is more independant than many give credit for, so he isn't afraid to expose it more. Steinitz gets credit for this but it's clear to me Bird showed him the way.
Feb-06-06  morpstau: Bird was a complete patzer and knew nothing of chess principles. He only won by tricking his opponents and hes nothing but a coffee-house patzer!
Feb-08-06  fred lennox: He was uneven, no doubt. A couple games in his match against Steinitz, (6-7) especially one, shows a patzer side to him. His real strength was intuition and tactical skills. He was a thinker and analyzer. He wrote a few books on chess.
Mar-12-08  Knight13: <20...Na5 21...Nc6> LOL.
Mar-12-08  mistreaver: 7... Kf8? Why not castle or g6 instead
Aug-23-08  ughaibu: Unless my eyes deceive me, this game's main theme is over-protection.

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