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Joseph Henry Blackburne vs Albert Clerc
Paris (1878), Paris FRA, rd 19, Jul-18
Queen's Gambit Accepted: Janowski-Larsen Variation (D25)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Dec-21-08  thebribri8: This is why Blackburne is my favorite player. He takes a probably lost piece-pawn endgame position and creates a mating situation!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn and Two: Blackburne was very good at spotting tactical opportunities, but he took a huge gamble with 54.Nf5?. He could have played for the draw with: (-.13) (23 ply) 54.Nc6! Bf6 55.Nxb4 Rg3 56.Ke6 Re3+ 57.Kd5 Re5+ 58.Kc6, or (-.07) (23 ply) 56...Bb2 57.Nc6 Rxg4 58.Ne7+ Kh5 59.Kf5.

After 54.Nf5?, Clerc had a winning continuation with: (-1.75) (21 ply) 54...Bf6! 55.Ke6 b3 (as noted in the tournament book). If then, 56.Ne7+ Bxe7 57.Kxe7 Re3+ 58.Kd6 b2, and Black is winning.

After 54...Rd3+? 55.Ke6, Clerc entirely overlooked the imminent danger, and played the losing 55...Bf6??. The tournament book, "Der Internationale Schachkongress Paris 1878", stated that Black could still win with 55...Bf8!.

After 55...Bf8! (-.96) (24 ply) 56.Ke5 b3 57.Rb1 Bc5 58.Ke6 Rc3 59.Ke5 Ba3 60.Kd4 Rf3 61.Ne3 Bc5+ 62.Kxc5 Rxe3, Fritz indicates Black is winning.

However, White has a better defense with: 55...Bf8! (-.95) (24 ply) 56.Rh1 Rd8 57.Rh8 Re8+ 58.Kd7 Rb8 59.Nd4 Ra8, (-1.09) (24 ply) 60.Nb3 Kf7 61.Rh1 Ra6 62.Rd1 Kg6, (-1.21) (24 ply) 63.Rd3 Rf6 64.Na5 Rf4 65.Rg3, or (-1.21) (24 ply) 63.Rd5 Rb6 64.Rd3 Rf6 65.Na5. Additional analysis is needed to determine if Black is winning in this line.

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