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Fred Dewhirst Yates vs Richard Reti
New York (1924), New York, NY USA, rd 19, Apr-12
Caro-Kann Defense: Classical Variation (B18)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: White has a knight for a bishop and a pawn.

The relative position of the white knights and Black's royal family suggests 24.Ng5:

A) 24... Qxg5 25.Rh8+ Kxh8 26.Nxf7+

A.1) 26... Kg8 27.Nxg5 Re8 (27... Rd6 28.c5) 28.Qg4 + - [Q vs R+B] and a winning attack. For example, 28... Be7 (to answer 29.Qh4 with 29... Bxg5) 29.Qxe6+ Kh8 (29... Kf7 30.Qf7#) 30.Qh3+ Kg8 31.Qh7+ Kf8 32.Qh8#.

A.2) 26... Kh7 27.Nxg5+ Kg8 28.Nxe6 + - [Q+P vs R+B].

B) 24... Rf8

B.1) 25.Qg4 f6 26.Qh4 followed by 27.Qh8#.

B.2) 25.Ngxf7 Rxf7 26.Nxg6 Rf6 27.Nxe7+ Bxe7 28.Qg4 + - [Q+P vs B+N], but is slower than B.1.

Apr-29-15  gofer: Well, the start could be <24 Ng5>, but only because the knight is immune. <24 ... Qxg5 25 Rh8+ Kxh8 26 Nxf7+ Kg8 27 Nxg5 >. I like this because although it doesn't win immediately it can easily be followed by Qg4, Qh4
threatening mate and at no point can black play f6 (or f5) trying to dislodge the knight (or queen) due to either Nxg6 threatening mate and Qe7 or Rh8+ winning Qe7 with Nxg6+...

<24 Ng5 ...>

White threatens the very simple two move mate 1 Nxf7 2 Rh8#, so black must fine a defence.

<1. Trying to dislodge the knights>

24 ... Qxg5
25 Rh8+ Kxh8
26 Nxf7+ Kg8
27 Nxg5

24 ... f5
25 Nxg6 ...
25 ... Qxg5 26 Qxe6#
25 ... any other move 26 Rh8#

24 ... f6
25 Nxg6 ...
25 ... fxg5 26 Nxe7+ Kf7 ( Kf8 27 Rh8+ Kxe7/Kf7 28 Qxe6#) 27 Qxe6+ Ke8/Kf8 28 Rh8# 25 ... Qxg5 26 Qxe6#
25 ... any other move 26 Rh8#

<2. Trying to bloster the defences of Pf7>

24 ... Rf8
25 Qg5 ...

White threatens 26 Rh8+ Kxh8 27 Qh4+ Kg8 28 Qh7#

25 ... f5/f6
26 Qh4 mating

25 ... Qxg5
26 Qxg5 f6
27 Qxg6 mating soon


I like the idea of 24 ... Rf8 25 Ngxf7! as it wins the queen for two knights, but perhaps 24 ... Rf8 25 Qg5 does the same but with the gain of tempo...

24 Ng5 Rf8
25 Qg4 Qxg5 (forced)
26 Qxg5 f6 (forced?)
27 Qxg6 fxe5 (forced?)
28 Qxe6 Rf7 (forced)
29 Rxe5

click for larger view

Black's uncordinated defences mean that Rf8 is probably necessary, at which point Reh5 is game over...

Apr-29-15  alexrawlings: What a great tactic! I'm disappointed I didn't spot it even though I knew forks had to be in the air given the proximity of the black king & queen and the two white knights. I often find it hard to spot these GOOT moves as <Once> calls them.
Apr-29-15  wooden nickel: I underestimated 24.Ng5 and went for the inferior 24.Nxf7 instead: i.e. 24.Nxf7 Qxf7 25.Ng5 Qf6 26.Rf3 Qxg5 27.Qxe6+

click for larger view

Premium Chessgames Member
  rodchuck: For a medium/easy quite a challenge. I pondered for at least 15 minutes before deciding that Ng5 was a killer move. All the more credit to Yates, who saw this trap and set it up! Yates was a bit of a giant killer Alekhine vs Yates, 1923, who although inconsistent, was capable of flights of fantasy.
Apr-29-15  CHESSTTCAMPS: White has the material disadvantage of a knight for a pawn plus bishop, but the knight pair is wonderfully active in the center and white has a lifted rook with open file access to the king on the h-file if he can just figure out how to use it. With the black queen controlling h4, white has no way to make a major piece battery on the h-file. However, there is another means for entry.

24.Ng5! is the logical continuation of the attack and the knight is immune from capture:

A.24... Qxg5 25.Rh8+ Kxh8 26.Nxf7+ Kg8 (Kh7 is a tempo worse) 27.Nxg5 Re8 28.Qf3 Rf8 (or Re7) 29.Qh3 forces mate.

B.24... f6 25.Nxg6 fxg5 (otherwise 26.Rh8#) 26.Nxe7+ Bxe7 27.Qxe6+ cleans up.

C.24... Rf8 25.Qg4 Qxg5 (otherwise Rh8+ forces mate) 26.Qxg5 f6 27.Qxg6 fxe5 28.Qxe6+ Rf7 29.Rxe5 followed by Qg6 forces mate.

D.24... Re8 25.Qg4 (threatening Rh8+ or Qh4) is even more effective than Ngxf7, which is also winning.

Time for review....

Apr-29-15  TheaN: Wednesday 29 April 2015 <24.?>

In this position it's clear black neglected the king side to force a breakthrough on the queen side. All of this is common strategy, up to the point where the king side gets overrun and the compensation is nil.

White does have a small issue with his king side space: the queen does not really have a proper square to invade: h5 is unavailable and f3 or g4 are probably too slow. This allows black to play the f-pawn up and/or retreat the pieces and some defense ensues. All of that is pointless, because white can finish the game with his knights and rook.

After <24.Ng5!> puts the question to the non-existant defenders as this fatally pressures f7. Acceptance or declining, most variations fair similar.

A) <24....Qxg5> goes down fighting <25.Rh8+! Kxh8 26.Nxf7+ Kg8 27.Nxg5 > white has captured the black queen for a rook, knight and pawn, but more importantly black's 'compensation' are now just bystanders away from a very open king side.

B) <24....Bb4> basically the counterattacking option for a decline. <25.Nexf7> it's a deliberate choice to capture with the e-knight, as 25....Qxg5? 26.Rh8+! Kxf7 27.Qxe6# is mate. <25....Qxf7> only move to defend against mate. Now 26.Rh8+?! Kxh8 27.Nxf7+ is possible, but that will just throw the additional piece. After <26.Nxf7> black can't capture on f7 26....Kxf7 27.Qxe6+ Kf8 28.Rh8#, but after <26....Bxe1 27.Qxe6! > mate follows soon.

C) <24....Nd7/Bd6/Rxd4> attacking the e-knight is kind of pointless if white intends to capture with that anyway <25.Nexf7 > similar to B. Rxd4 fairs similar, as the rook on d4 doesn't change anything.

D) <24....Rf8> putting more defense on f7 is probably not a bad idea. <25.Ngxf7!> the subtle change to capture with the g-knight will be apparant shortly <25....Rxf7> Qxf7 26.Nxf7 Rxf7 27.Qxe6 is just lost <26.Nxg6 > black has no reasonable defense against both 27.Rh8# and 27.Nxe7+.

E) <24....f6> defends f7 in a different way, yet <25.Nxg6!> is not different than in D (worse, because it does not require a capture on f7 first). White threatens mate on h8 because Ng5 covers f7. After <25....fxg5 26.Nxe7+ > black is lost.

F) <24....f5> is subtlety different from E as the queen still covers g5, but the f-pawn does not. This allows white to simply play <25.Nef7 > and all variations are similar as C or B.

G) <24....Qb4> putting the queen as far away from the action as possible might allow the king to escape via e7. Essentially, yes. But after that it's mate anyway: <25.Nexf7 Kf8 26.Rh8+ Ke7 27.Qxe6# 1-0>, black can throw in 25....Qxe1+ 26.Qxe1 but then the combination continues similarly.

H) It has been a while I have written down this many variations. Did I forget something significant? Oh wait, of course: <24....Kf8!!>. <25.Rh8#> awwww darn.

Time to check what black decided.

Apr-29-15  morfishine: Get Reti!

<24.Ng5> 24...Qxg5 loses to 25.Rh8+ Kxh826.Nxf7+ followed by 27.Nxg5

What's interesting is 24...f6 fails to the same tactic: 25.Rh8+ Kxh8 26.Ng6+ followed by 27.Nxe7+


Apr-29-15  TheaN: The only variations slightly off are my D and F variations (24....Rf8 or f5).

After 24....Rf8 25.Qg4! is stronger and leads to mate as the black king is completely boxed in.

24....f5 opens up the diagonal to the king straight away and after 25.Nxg6! black can't avoid mate in one: 25....Qxg5 26.Qxe6#, otherwise Rh8#.

The other variations are optimal. Black's 'best' option might be 24....Rd7 to defend f7 twice without allowing mate but black is still lost.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: The combination I was hoping for was 24.Nxg6 fxg6 25.Ng5 Qxg5 26.Qxe6+ Kf8 27.Rh8# 1-0. :|
Apr-29-15  griga262: This was a difficult one for me. Saw a lot of half-ideas involving the knights and the rook, but could not make them work.
Premium Chessgames Member
  NM JRousselle: This game is from the famous New York 1924 tournament. This tournament has many famous games. To name a few:

Capablanca - Lasker (2 champions)
Marshall - Bogoljubov (my favorite Marshall)
Reti - Capablanca (Capa's 1st loss in a decade)
Capablanca - Tartakover (A classic R ending)
Em Lasker - Ed Lasker (great fight)
Marshall - Alekhine (Watch the b pawn)
Ed Lasker - Alekhine (great ending)
Capablanca - Yates (White knight dances)

Apr-29-15  kevin86: The knights sure take over this one!
Apr-29-15  YouRang: I figured out right away that the tactic probably featured Rh8+ to set up a N fork (Nxg6+ would fork K+Q except that black spoils it with ...fxg6).

It took me a minute to figure out how to make it work, but finally I saw it: 24.Ng5!

click for larger view

If 24...Qxg5, we fork the "other" way with 25.Rh8+ Kxh3 26.Nxf7+.

And if black declines the Ng5? Then one of our knights takes Pf7 threatening Rh8#.

And if black declines the Ng5 AND guards Pf7 with 24...Rf7? Then 25.Qg4, and black is faced with Rh8+ Kxh8, Qh4+ Kg8, Qh7#.

In any case, black has to give up the Q, so he may as well give up the game.

Apr-29-15  thegoodanarchist: I didn't solve it. I am embarrassed and humiliated. 50 lashes with a wet noodle for me.
Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: <thegoodanarchist> What will it be Ramen? Udon? LoMein? Chow Mein?
Apr-29-15  Marmot PFL: I would play 24 Ng5 and saw the main trap (Qxg5 Rh8+ of course) but didn't look at much else, and wouldn't claim I solved the position. I was surprised black resigned but it seems that there weren't any good moves.
Apr-29-15  stst: 24.Ng5...followed by Qf3 should gain advantage.
IF (A) ......f6
If (i) fxg5, 26.Rh8+ Kxh8, 27.Nxg6+ and Q lost
If (ii) fxe5, 26.Rh8+ Kxh8, 27.Qh3+ Kg8, 28.Qh7+ Kf8, 29.Qh8#

IF (B)...... Qxg5
25.Rh8+ Kxh8
26.Nxf7 forks K,Q, R ===> Q lost

IF (C).... Qc7
25.Qf3 Kf7
26.Rh8+ Ke7

IF (D) ...... Rf8
25.Qf3 Qxg5
26.Rh8+ Kxh8
26.Nxf7+ if Rxf7, 27.Qxf7 and Rxe6 next with strong attack.

Time to check actual game move

25.Rh8+ Kxh8
26.Nxg6+ ===> Q lost

Apr-29-15  stst: < Ramen? Udon? LoMein? Chow Mein?>

Some afternoon fun... each got its interpretation wrt this game:

Literally means stretched noodle, in this case, no doubt Black is being stretched after Ng5, in different directions and fashions...

The Jap version of thick Shanghai noodle, but the "U" means Black in Chinese, so.. it's Black ... being put to a broil...

Literally means noodle conjured up with other stuff, so yes, the different variations after Ng5 is quite a dish when mixed and stirred together (Black resigned to avoid this embarrasment.)

Similar to LoMein, the stirred noodle, usually little juice in it.... hence, Black resigned, to avoid being juiced up...

Premium Chessgames Member
  Bubo bubo: The Pf7 in inadequately defended: White plays 24.Ng5!, threatening Nxf7 with a mate threat Black can repel only at the expense of his queen. Black has no sufficient defense:

A) 24...Qxg5 25.Rh8+ Kxh8 26.Nxf7+ wins the queen for rook+knight, with White's attack still going on.

B) 24...f6 25.Nxg6 "forks" the queen and the mating square h8.

C) 24...Rf8 25.Ngxf7 Rxf7 26.Nxg6 again wins the queen due to the threat of Rh8#.

Good job by White's knight gang!

Apr-29-15  M.Hassan: "Medium/Easy"
White to play 24.?
White is a pawn down and has a Knight for a Bishop.

24.Nxf6 gxf6
<if...Qxg5 26.Qxe6+ Kf8 27.Rh8#>

If 25......Re8,
White's attack will be aborted. So, my move 24 will be a Queen move:

24.Qe3 Bb4
<if...Rf8 26.Rh8+ Kxh8 27.Qh3+ Kg8 28.Qh7#> 25.........Qxg5
26.Qxg5 Bxe1
And White is positioned for another decisive attack.

Apr-29-15  Cheapo by the Dozen: Ack. Famous position, and I neither remembered nor found the answer. I just wasn't thinking in terms of that fork.

Neither, I gather, was Reti ...

Apr-01-21  N.O.F. NAJDORF: 'I like [Ng5] because ... it can easily be followed by Qg4, Qh4 threatening mate and at no point can black play f6 (or f5) trying to dislodge the knight (or queen) due to either Nxg6 threatening mate and Qe7 or Rh8+ winning Qe7 with Nxg6+...'


Rh8+ is unnecessary!

After 24 ... Rf8

25 Qg4 f6

26 Qh4 and mate next move

May-30-22  ismet: move 21. Bxa3 is blunder for black . best move seems 21...Nd7
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: 7 c3 isn't seen much any more - it is not very ambitious. 12 Bd2 had been played once before; 12 Bb3 was new. As pointed out on page 1 of these comments 22 Nfg5 would have led to a decisive attack. Black was lost after 22..Qh4?; he would have retained decent drawing chances after 22..Rxd4 23 Rxd4..Qxe5 24 Red1..Be7.
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