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Max Euwe vs Miguel Najdorf
"Swervy Euwe" (game of the day Aug-26-2006)
Zuerich Candidates (1953), Zuerich SUI, rd 9, Sep-13
King's Indian Defense: Fianchetto Variation. Immediate Fianchetto (E60)  ·  1-0



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Given 51 times; par: 49 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Dec-22-08  zzzzzzzzzzzz: euwe saced an entire rook just for developing his initative
Dec-22-08  zzzzzzzzzzzz: euwe has a strong pawn on d6
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: 6..e5!? was a pet line of Najdorf. By omitting ..d6 he keeps the option of 7..dxe as a response to 7 dxe (7..fxe is a sharper alternative). Najdorf had used this system to defeat Reshevsky in game 12 of their 1952 match.7 Bg5 was new; 7 Nf3 was played by Stahlberg against Najdorf in the 25th round (Najdorf won). Euwe felt that 9 d6 was necessary; otherwise Najdorf would have played ..d6,..Qe7 and ..f5 with a good game. Najdorf was critical of 13..f5 opening lines around his King recommending 13..Ba6 instead. Najdorf continued his aggressive defense with 15..e4?! and 16..Bxb2; 15..Qe8 was an alternative. The complications were difficult to calculate: one pretty variation was 17..Bxa1 18 Nxg6+..Kg7 19 gxf..Bc3+ 20 Kf1..Rxf5 21 Nxe4..Rxd5 22 Qxd5..Kxg6 23 Rg1+..Kh7 24 Qd3! and mates. Euwe said "Najdorf lost the battle without having made any demonstrable error". Other commentators could not agree on where Najdorf went wrong.

Kasparov: "Euwe ended the first cycle sharing 5th-7th (out of 15) places with Petrosian and Boleslavsky (7 1/2 out of 14), but he no longer had sufficient energy for the second cycle. An eloquent picture while his opponents were considering their moves, his wife was constantly massaging his head. After Zurich 1953 he played extremely rarely and almost exclusively in team competitions."

His two brilliancies in this tournament (against Geller and Najdorf) represented his farewell to big-time chess.

Sep-11-11  Eduardo Bermudez: Euwe doing a 'Glucksburg' on Najdorf !!
Premium Chessgames Member
  LIFE Master AJ: Perhaps Euwe's greatest game???
Jan-21-12  Eduardo Bermudez: For Euwe himself : THE CHESSGAME OF HIS LIFE !!
May-10-12  MarkFinan: Loved the Ng5 shot, and Rook sac..
Don't know much about Euwe, but he really went for It here.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Diademas: <MarkFinan: Don't know much about Euwe, but he really went for It here.>

Probarbly a patzer. Can't seem to find any information about this guy. Max Euwe was it? Nah. ;)

May-10-12  MarkFinan: <Diademas> I am not a chess historian, Iv'e only ever been through this game of his, but I obviously know who he is!!

I'm not that Interested in him, what his favoured openings were etc..etc.. I don't take chess <that> seriously, even though I'm fairly young I'm realistic, so I wasn't Inviting a comment for any Information on the guy...

I'd rather concentrate on my own chess, than some old guy's!!

Nice game though, ey? ;)

May-10-12  SimonWebbsTiger: @<MarkFinan>

tut-tut, old boy!

<I'd rather concentrate on my own chess, than some old guy's!!>

The two aren't incompatible. Euwe's books on the middlegame (eg. Judgement and Planning in Chess), his endgame manual and his collection of best games (From My Games 1920-37) have taught many to play better chess.

So there is a lot to be had from studying <this old guy>, who played and beat many of the world's best in his long career. :o)

May-11-12  MarkFinan: <SWT> What you say is true, of course it is, and you've probably forgetten more about chess, It's history, and It's players than I'll ever learn, but <Diademas> implied I must somehow be stupid for not knowing anything about Euwe, when as we all know I'm perfecfectly capable of being stupid without having to be reminded who Max Euwe

When i read Interviews from the top young players of today, like Carlsen or Naka for example, they didn't really show any more Interest in chess history than most people who post at this site, yet they've achieved unbelievable levels of play.. It's the same In most games/sports, the people at the top their game don't need to be a scholar or student of that particular game/sport to conquer It..:)

May-11-12  SimonWebbsTiger: @<Mark>

heh heh, you are a master of humorous self-deprecation.

I noticed what you point out when Anish Giri said he didn't really own books -- basically just an engine and a database, although he thought My Great Predecessors by Kasparov was good.

I am not sure if the youngsters are pulling our legs since Kasparov and his contemporaries had an intimate knowledge of the greats -- it was simply an ingrained habit of Soviet chess training to be acquainted with the masters. A case in point was how Kasparov didn't want to play a certain pawn structure v. Karpov in a match game because he didn't like it because of memories of an old Reshevsky-Capablanca game!

Sadly, I know many youngsters, many rating points higher than me, who might not know who Euwe is. The good news is they will be enthralled if you show them this game with its d5-d6! idea and point them in the direction of Bronstein's annotations in Zurich 1953. Bronstein, the great lover of chess beauty, was similarly enthralled by Euwe's entire concept.

May-05-13  Eduardo Bermudez: When in mid sixties, the journalist Bjelica asked to some prominent chess players of the world about: THE GAME OF HIS LIFE, for Dr. Euwe this was his best the game !
Oct-21-13  zydeco: Bronstein suggests 23....Nd8. White continues his attack with 24.Bxb7 Nxb7 25.Ncd5.
Premium Chessgames Member
  hoodrobin: Underrated Euwe?
Nov-12-14  tranquilsimplicity: Euwe is a name rarely mentioned when we talk about a universal style in Chess. Having re-played several games by Euwe, and read his comments on other Masters, I cannot but conclude that Euwe's game has a universal characteristic; comfortable in dynamism (attacking) and restrictive (defensive) qualities. No wonder Capablanca felt that Euwe's game was balanced.#
Dec-11-14  TheBish: Although up a rook, Najdorf had to return the bishop with 22...Kh8 23. Nxc3, because if instead 22...Be5?, Euwe would have continued 23. Ng3 Qh7 24. Qg4+ Kh8 25. Ng6+, winning the queen since Black gets mated after 25...Kg7 26. Nh5#. Also 22...Bf6 23. Ng3 Qe5 24. Qg4+ Bg5 25. hxg5 Qxg5 26. Qxd7+ is crushing, as is 22...Ba5 23. Ng3 Qh7 24. Qg4+ Kf6 25. Ngh5+ Ke5 25. Ng6+ Qxg6 26. Qxg6.
May-18-16  andrea volponi: 18...gxf5-Dh5 Ce5 = karsten muller
Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: There was yet a third move 20 Rg1

click for larger view

which is perhaps the wildest choice of all, simply adding a piece to the mix and allowing Black his choice.

if 20...Qc3+ 21 Kf1 Rxf5 22 Nxe4 Rxd5 23 Ne5+

click for larger view

The mate after 23...Kh7 24 Nf6+ Kh8 25 Nf7# would be tempting, but Euwe would have to assess 23...Kh8 24 Nf7+ Kh7 25 Qxd5 Ne7 and despite White winning comfortably, there is no mate, and White still has to be careful not to allow a counter-attack. Komodo 10 gives the final position as +3.88/33

Jun-03-21  SymphonicKnight: A Brilliancy Prize winner at the famous Zurich 1953 Candidates Tournament, Euwe here shows in dashing form how useful it can be to cut communications between the opponent's flanks. Others have said that Euwe referred to this as the game of his life, although he did produce a number of other gems as well.
Dec-29-21  tbontb: White (Euwe) bravely sacrifices a R for a strong attack, which Black (Najdorf) would have done better not to accept. However, White misses the most precise win by 20.Nf4, as advocated by Bronstein. In the game, the losing move is 27....Rxe3 after which the attack crashes through. Instead, 27....Na5 (or even 18....Na5) defends successfully, limiting White to just a small advantage.
Jan-30-22  N.O.F. NAJDORF: 29...Rb8 30. Bxc6 Bxc6 31. Qa1+ Kg8 32. Re7 Qg5 33. Qb1 Qf6 34. Qh7+ Kf8 35. Re5 Qxe5 36. Ng6+ Ke8 37. Qg8#

Couldn't black have played

24...Na5 25. Qa1+ Rf6 26. Ng3 Qe5 ?

Jan-30-22  FM David H. Levin: <N.O.F. NAJDORF: [...snip...] Couldn't black have played

24...Na5 25. Qa1+ Rf6 26. Ng3 Qe5 ?>

After 24...Na5 25. Ng3 Qf6 (On 25...Qh7, then 26. Ngh5, threatening to check on the a1/h8 diagonal, looks strong.) 26. Ngh5 Qb2 27. Bxb7 Nxb7 28. Ng6+ Kh7 29. Nxf8+ Rxf8 30. Qd3+ Kh8 31. Nf4, White is up a pawn (at least temporarily) and seems to retain an attack.

Feb-09-22  N.O.F. NAJDORF: Thanks for your analysis!

How about

24...Na5 25. Ng3 Qf6 26. Bxb7 Nxb7 27. Ngh5 Qb2 28. Ng6+ Kh7 29. Nxf8+ Rxf8 30. Qd3+ Kh8 31. Nf4 Qa1+ 32. Kg2 Qg7+ 33. Kh2 Rf6 34. Rg1 Rxd6 35. Ng6+ Kg8 36. Qf5 Qf6 37. Ne5+ Kf8 38. Qxf6+ Rxf6 39. Nxd7+ and white should win.

Premium Chessgames Member
  fredthebear: Bruce Wallace explains in his video:
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