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Carl Schlechter vs Emanuel Lasker
Lasker - Schlechter World Championship Match (1910), Vienna AUH, rd 3, Jan-15
Spanish Game: Berlin Defense. Improved Steinitz Defense (C66)  ·  1/2-1/2



Annotations by Jose Raul Capablanca.      [26 more games annotated by Capablanca]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Mar-02-08  Knight13: <23. Nc3: -Black has a decisive advantage ( )> Huh!? How is this """DECISIVE""""?

<He stands like a rock and waits for the other fellow to come at him.> Draw master...

Sep-10-09  visayanbraindoctor: Bridgeburner: PART 1


Schlechter vs Lasker, 1910 is the <third game of the 2008 title match>.

Quantitative mapping of this game between these players is below. Figures in brackets immediately after each move are the corrected engine evaluations generated on the return slide. The reverse slide smoothed out many, but not all fluctuation in the engines evaluations. The complexity of some variations was very likely too great to enable a fuller reconciliation from the forward slide, especially in the opening. <General methods used are described in the bio.>

The evaluation values in the opening come at the end of a full forward slide to the last move of the game and a full return slide back to the starting position. The engines first preferences (where they differ from players) have not been included in this game as it went into a static equilibrium in the opening. Differences between the engines preferred moves and the players were frequently no greater than a couple of centipawns.


The only grandmaster draw in the match. A conservative Berlin Defense (Improved Steinitz) by Lasker is met by an even more conservative wait and see strategy by Schlechter playing the White pieces. The game loses its heartbeat by move 11, never straying from absolute equality by more than a dozen centipawns, and dragging on for another twenty moves before the players called it a day.

Fortunately, this was the only game in the match that was a tame GM draw.

Sep-10-09  visayanbraindoctor: Bridgeburner: PART 2


<1. e4> ( 0.27) <1e5> ( 0.37)

<2. Nf3> ( 0.37) <2Nc6> ( 0.37)

<3. Bb5> ( 0.39) <3Nf6> ( 0.44)

<4. 0-0> ( 0.31) <4d6> ( 0.44)

<5. Re1> ( 0.35) <5Be7> ( 0.40)

<6. d4> ( 0.40) <6exd4> ( 0.40)

<7. Nxd4> ( 0.37) <7Bd7> ( 0.41)

<8. Nc3> ( 0.37) <80-0> ( 0.35)

<9. Bxc6> ( 0.30) <9bxc6> ( 0.30)

<10. Bg5> (=0.19) <10Re8> (=0.19)

<11. Qd3> (=0.00) <11Ng4> (=0.07)

<12. Bxe7> (=0.06) <12Qxe7> (=0.03)

This marks the end of theory in respect of this opening as shown in the database. The other game in the database to reach this point was Bronstein vs P Romanovsky, 1945 which continued with <13. h3>, with White winning in a reasonably brisk (for this opening) 41 moves.

<13. Nf3> (=-0.01) <13Rab8> (=0.00)

<14. b3> (=0.00) <14Ne5> (=0.00)

<15. Nxe5> (=0.00) <15Qxe5> (=0.00)

<16. Qe3> (=-0.10) <16Qa5> (=-0.10)

<17. Qd3> (=-0.12) <17Re7> (=-0.12 )

<18. Re3> (=-0.12) <18Rbe8> (=-0.12)

<19. Rae1> (=-0.12) <19f6> (=-0.10)

<20. h3> (=-0.11) <20Be6> (=-0.02)

<21. Na4> (=-0.02) <21Bf7> (=-0.02)

<22. c4> (=-0.02) <22h6> (=0.03)

<23. Nc3> (=-0.03) <23Kh8> (=0.00)

<24. Qd2> (=0.03) <24Bg6> (=0.00)

<25. R1e2> (=-0.08) <25Bf7> (=0.00)

<26. Qd4> (=-0.08) <26Qb6> (=-0.08)

<27. Qd2> (=-0.11) <27Qa5> (=-0.00)

<28. Qd4> (=-0.08) <28Qb6> (=-0.08)

<29. Qd2> (=-0.11) <29Qa5> (=0.00)

<30. Qd4> (=-0.00) <30Qb6> (=0.00)

<31. Qd2> (=0.00) <31Qa5> (=0.00)

Agreed drawn.

Sep-10-09  visayanbraindoctor: Bridgeburner: PART 3


<Note> The fluctuations generated in the relatively low (16 minimum) ply forward slide were smoothed out in the equivalent return slide. The corrected evaluations extracted from the return slide are used in this analysis, as they are considered more reliable than the raw evaluations generated on the initial forward slide. All moves have been evaluated on forward and return slide for completeness.

<Evaluation range>:

Between (=-0.12) applying to the move group <17. Qd3 Re7 18. Re3 Rbe8>> - representing equality - and ( 0.44) in respect of the moves <3Nf6> and <4.d6>> representing a small advantage for White.

<The largest evaluation shifts>:

There were no significant evaluation shifts during this game that compared to the initial advantage conferred to White with his first move.

<Computer statistics>:

Omitted as meaningless in this game. Outside the opening, there were only extremely small evaluation differences to distinguish between preferred moves in a game that was extremely drawish past move 11. <The engine evaluation of the final position>:

was =0.00 in a position agreed drawn.


<Using both weighting methods, the game is weighted at 0, representing no errors, blunders, or dubious moves by either Schlechter or Lasker.>

Sep-10-09  FHBradley: Capablanca-the-player was certainly superior to Capablanca-the-annotator.
Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: Yes, from that era, I like Lasker's and Alekhine's notes much more.

On the other hand, Capa's only real note matches the computer analysis of no real deviations off of equality, so there was not much to say.

<This game is very tedious. Black certainly could not try anything; it was up to White, but Schlechter seems to be very satisfied to get a draw. He stands like a rock and waits for the other fellow to come at him.>

Sep-10-09  visayanbraindoctor: <tamar, FHBradley> Looking at Capa's notes (which I have to for this particular WC match) breeds a combination of <gawd what an idiot!> and <are you kidding, surely you're joking!> and <yikes, it's the real Capa talking, listen up now!>

Even Capablanca himself would not play some of the recommendations in his own notes.

(After bashing poor Capa, I must say that most of the actual moves from his own games constitute a superior kind of annotation, as he had a knack of finding the best moves over the board.)

Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: <'Tis better that the enemy seek us: So shall he waste his means, weary his soldiers,
Doing himself offence; whilst we, lying still,
Are full of rest, defence, and nimbleness.>

Cassius giving advice to Brutus in "Julius Caesar"

Overall, it proved very effective against Lasker, who had the same frame of mind, but got an early loss in the match.

Apr-29-14  Karpova: Dr. Emanuel Lasker: <Zum ersten Male im Leben bin ich vor eine solche Aufgabe gestellt.>

(For the first time in my life have I been confronted with such a problem.)

Source: 'Pester Lloyd', 1910.01.16, p. 8

What Lasker means is that he didn't manage to beat Schlechter yet, as the thrid game also ended in a draw. This raises the problem of the draw death of chess, but also directly a problem for Lasker, who was accustomed to starting title matches with one or several wins.

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