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Aron Nimzowitsch vs Jose Raul Capablanca
Karlsbad (1929), Karlsbad CSR, rd 11, Aug-13
English Opening: Symmetrical. Four Knights Variation (A35)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-02-04  meloncio: Nimzo never won to Capa, but this game looks very interesting for white at the final position. I think the obvious 31.Rxg6+ was the reason of the draw. Or they were just in time troubles?

Anyway, Nimzo lost here his last chance to win; they never met again on the board.

Aug-02-04  Calli: Nimzo takes the draw because 30...cxb3 31.Rxg6+ is a perpetual check. There is really no way to continue the attack after the rook sac.

Nimzo won Carlsbad 1929 and then declined pretty fast. He wrote a crazy "tournament book" about Carlsbad 1929. More or less a critique of the styles of the players, it contains only selected games. All kinds of weird comments. For instance, in this game, he says 15...Ne6! "Totally Neo-Romantic!" Now what does that mean? :-)

Aug-02-04  meloncio: <Calli> I agree with Hans Kmoch when he writes about our hero: "... The man was not exactly crazy, but he did have certain marked peculiarities ..." LOL

Is it possible to find this Nimzo's book yet? I never heard before, and I am a passionate collector of old chess books, specially about the games and players of XX century's first half.

Premium Chessgames Member
  sneaky pete: <meloncio> Carlsbad International Chess Tournament 1929 / Annotated by Aron Nimzovich / Translated from the Russian by Jim Marfia / Dover Publications, Inc. New York (1981). ISBN 0-486-24115-7. Original price (only) $3,50. I wouldn't call it crazy, only a bit peculiar, but very interesting and well written and well worth hunting for.
Aug-02-04  meloncio: <sneaky pete> Thanks! I'll try it.
Aug-02-04  Calli: The book is hard to find, but Dover is supposed to re-release it in a month or so. I believe that it was only published in Russian originally (1930). This is odd in itself since Nimzovich had resided for quite some time in Denmark. One would have expected at least a German edition. Marfia implies the book's purpose was to promote a World Champ match.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: It was unfortunate that Nimzowitsch only annotated 30 games from the tournament and not every one.

Here's another game where Nimzowitsch nearly got the better of Capablanca Capablanca vs Nimzowitsch, 1928
According to Ray Keene 21...♘d5 would virtually have forced Capa's resignation.

Nov-26-04  kostich in time: There were two tournament books written about Carlsbad 1929. The first is the "official "tournament book, which Chernev considered one of the ten best chess books ever written. Its by-hold on to your hats-Spielmann, Tartakover, Nimzowitsch, Becker, Kmoch, and some guy named Brinckman. Then there is Nimzowitschs pamphlet. I read the Dover edition in a used bookstore in Detroit some 15 years ago. It is one of the funniest, weirdest chess books ever written. It is Nimzowitsch advertising himself. the subtext is "Is there a God? There is now!"One of his contentions appears to be that almost all of the good games in the tournament where either played by himself, or by people who understand his theories, like Spielmann and Capablanca. His comment on Spielmann is hilarious. I quote from memory" He finally admits that he is beginning to understand my theories." Is this the tournament where Nimzowitsch performed general calisthenics between moves?
Premium Chessgames Member
  sneaky pete: <kostich in time> "This same phenomenen occured in his positional play. Here, by his own admission, he has come under my influence. Centralization, overprotection, blockade, and most of all, prophylaxis (all of which are worked out in such detail in my books) completely occupied his attention. Just as in 1927 he had subjected rook endings to detailed study, so in 1928-29 he began using my books to study positional play. You ought to have heard the excitement with which he showed his games from the first half of the tournament. 'Blockade', 'prophylaxis', and all the rest, fairly flew from his lips; and if I chanced to be looking on, there would be a friendly nod in my direction."

The chapter on Spielmann is headed "Borrowed technique, but a wealth of understanding, and a considerable gift for combination". When commenting on Spielmann's win against Capablanca, AN makes it clear to the reader RS could never have pulled this of without the valuable lessons from his esteemed teacher.

Nov-26-04  Minor Piece Activity: I like the 7. Nc2 maneuver. Supposedly it was pioneered by Rubinstein, is that true, it just seems like something Nimzowitsch would do. Which was the first game it was played in an English/hedgehoge/or something with a similar pawn structure?
Premium Chessgames Member
  RookFile: This game has a very modern looking appearance to it. Nimzo was wise to take the draw with Rg5 while he still could, Capa was on the verge of winning.
Dec-24-07  Fast Gun: It is curious that a chess great like Nimzowitsch never managed to defeat Capablanca in their eleven games:
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: Not that curious. Capa simply didn't lose that many games. Fine and Bogo never managed to beat him either.
Dec-24-07  veigaman: <It is curious that a chess great like Nimzowitsch never managed to defeat Capablanca in their eleven games> May be Nimzo was very schematic, rigid and stubborn in his play facing capablanca with an strong positional feeling to develop long term strategic combine with intuition
Premium Chessgames Member
  RookFile: Lasker, Capa, and Alekhine were head and shoulders above the rest of the world, even against extremely intelligent people like Nimzo.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Peligroso Patzer: <Fast Gun: It is curious that a chess great like Nimzowitsch never managed to defeat Capablanca in their eleven games:>

<Petrosianic: Not that curious. Capa simply didn't lose that many games. Fine and Bogo never managed to beat him either.>

Actually, the only decisive game between Capablanca and Fine in this database is the following win by Fine from a 1931 simul (when Fine was a teenager and not internationally famous): Capablanca vs Fine, 1931

The five regular games between these two great players in the database all ended in draws:

Aug-26-09  WhiteRook48: did Bogo ever beat him?
Aug-26-09  AnalyzeThis: Capa? No, Bogo got slapped around.
Jun-20-16  edubueno: Capa played nice and Nimzowitsch saved himself

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