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Max Euwe vs Alexander Alekhine
"Max Out" (game of the day May-19-2014)
Alekhine - Euwe World Championship Match (1935), Various Locations NED, rd 4, Oct-10
Gruenfeld Defense: Russian. Accelerated Variation (D81)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Jun-09-12  cristoff: Superb.Alekhine is a ''poet''! :)
Jun-23-13  cunctatorg: I fully agree that the great A. A. Alekhine was also a chess artist!!...
Aug-08-13  Garech: Superb game, I will think up a pun.


Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: This pun and <The Caro Can't> may be the only ones attached to three different games, the othes in this set being Euwe vs Lasker, 1934 and Euwe vs Reti, 1920.

All three are Euwe losses, so only 229 more to go.

May-19-14  Moszkowski012273: Euwe shouldn't of been scared to snatch the c6 pawn early in the game.
Premium Chessgames Member
  morfishine: When you have two players of this caliber, and one grabs an initiative, this is what you get: a great game of chess
May-19-14  Castleinthesky: Great game and very instructive on seizing the initiative.
Premium Chessgames Member
  rodchuck: White severely neglected his kingside development. Up until move 13 neither his kingside bishop nor knight had moved. It's not surprising that at this level of chess he was punished.
May-19-14  TheTamale: I appreciate (what I perceive to be) the high risk style adopted by these players in light of the fact that this was a game in a world championship match. Impressive.
May-19-14  Anderssen61: I like Alekhine's energy in this game. It was like he was running on batteries.
May-19-14  Eusebius: Alekhine at his best ....
May-19-14  bummerluck: Phony Benoni!

Botvinnik and Paid For

Petrosian vs Botvinnik, 1963

Botvinnik vs Portisch, 1968

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Euwe DID win the title in this match, Alekhine soon regained it, however.

After the rook takes, Qd2+ will regain the bishop and leave AA up a queen for a rook.

May-19-14  Howard: Kasparov analyzed this game in MGP, and he pointed out a quicker win near the Alekhine overlooked, but I don't recall where it was.
May-19-14  Conrad93: This game seems grossly overrated.

Why would Euwe allow such a strong pin against the knight on c5? And why would he delay castling for so long?

Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: "The correct defense consisted in 18 e4 Nd7 19 Be3 Bxd4 20 Nxd4 Qxc5 21 Qxc5 Nxc5 etc., with a probable draw as a result." Alekhine

18 e4 is indeed a great find, but the Queen exchange at the end is too co-operative by White.

Later Petrosian, and Karpov, would show that these supposedly drawish Gruenfeld positions are almost forced wins for White when the structures can be fixed.

Komodo immediately sees a great advantage for White, and further variations show that Black even has to guard against mating threats!

So instead of 21 Qxc5 it gives

21 Qd2 Qd6 22 Nxe6 ( Black's doubled pawns will later make the Kside a trap for the Black King due to Bh6 and threats of mate on f8) 22...Qxd2 23 Rxd2 Rc1+ 24 Rd1 Rxd1+ 25 Kxd1 fxe6 26 Ke2 Rb5 27 Rc1 Ra5 28 Rc2 Kf7 29 f3 a6 30 Bd2 Rb5 31 h4 a5

It takes awhile, but White has forced Black to play ...a5 after which his only counterplay against a2 is gone. Now play switches to Kside play all the while threatening a5 and e7.

32 Rc6 Nf6 33 Kd3 Nd7 34 Rc7 Ne5+ 35 Ke2 Ke8 36 Bg5 Nd7 37 Rc8+ Kf7 38 Ra8 Rc5 39 Ra7 Ke8 40 Kd3 Rc3+ 41 Kd2 Rc5 42 Be3 Rb5 43 Ra8+ Kf7 44 Bh6

click for larger view

Black is almost move-bound, and ends up giving up the a pawn, after which the White King is poised to come to c4.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <tamar> The position in the diagram looks nasty indeed for Black; if he cannot profitably deviate from the continuation you cite, rough seas lie ahead in the middlegame.
Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: <perfidious> Kasparov, without questioning Alekhine's variation at all, does give an alternative to 19...Bxd4 which at first seems sounder.

"Also interesting is 19...Bg4 20 f3 e5! 21 fxg4 exd4 22 Bxd4 Bxd4 23 Nxd4 Qxc5 24 0-0 (or 24 Qxc5 Nxc5) 24...Ne5 25 Qxc5 Rxc5, again with approximate equality." Kasparov OMGP V1 page 433

This evaluation also looks wrong, since why let Black break up the pawn structure when there is a safe plus to be found with 21 Qd3 in the diagram position.

click for larger view

Seems like Kasparov and Alekhine shared similar blindspots with regards to their favored openings.

May-19-14  DWINS: <Howard>, Purdy, in his book "Extreme Chess", points out that "Black could have made the win clearer by 25...Re8+". He's correct because of 26.Ne4 f5 or 26.Kd1 Bxd2
May-19-14  MountainMatt: Hard to imagine Alekhine losing the match with this level of play. Alcohol is a hell of a drug.
Dec-19-18  Howard: 37...Qe3+ would have won quicker, according to Kasparov's MGP. He uses the expression "computer geometry" in pointing out the faster win.
Dec-19-18  sudoplatov: Euwe won (with White) the other three Gruenfeld's in this match.
Dec-26-18  Howard: Oh oh!

There's a typo in Kasparov's MGP regarding this game. In his commentary to move 37 in which he claims that 37...Qe3+ would have won quicker, he claims at one point that Black's queen goes from e1 to c3...except that White has a rook on d2!

So, WOULD 37..Qe3+ have won quicker ?
I don't see it, to be honest.

May-21-19  Howard: Am I the only one who's noticed that typo ?!
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <So, WOULD 37..Qe3+ have won quicker ? > Yes. The proof is left as an exercise for the reader.
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