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Wilhelm Steinitz vs Johannes Zukertort
Steinitz - Zukertort World Championship Match (1886), New Orleans, LA USA, rd 12, Mar-03
Spanish Game: Berlin Defense. Rio Gambit Accepted (C67)  ·  1-0



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Given 19 times; par: 74 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Sep-11-06  Runemaster: I particularly like the tactical sequence provoked by Black's 34...Bc5. I think it's neat the way the White bishop drops back to capture on e1 and then springs back out to c3 to pin the rook and secure the transition to a winning K+P ending.

At the end, if Black ever plays ...Kg4, then g2-g3 and the g3 pawn can't be taken because of h4-h5 followed by g5-g6 and the Black king can't catch the pawn.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Mateo: <Runemaster> An interesting battle but with some nice moves but also some inacurracies. Funny to see that the opening inspired two games in modern chess practice.

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Nxe4 5. Re1 Nd6 6. Nxe5 Be7 7. Bxc6 dxc6 8. Qe2 Be6 9. d3 Nf5 10. Nd2 <Much later, masters tried other moves: 10. Nf3 Campora vs E Vladimirov, 1976 0-1 and 10. c3 Michail Panarin vs Ponomariov, 2004 0-1.> O-O 11. c3 Re8 12. Ne4 Qd5 13. Bf4 Rad8 14. d4 Nd6 15. Nc5 Bc8 16. Ncd3 f6 17. Nb4 Qb5 18. Qxb5 Nxb5 <18... cxb5 19. Ned3 c6=.> 19. Ned3 <Steinitz wants more than a draw with 19. Nexc6 bxc6 20. Nxc6 Rd7 21. a4 Nd6 22. Nb8 Rdd8 23. Nc6, repeting moves.> Bf5 <Threatening 20... a5.> 20. a4?! <This allowed a little combination. Safer was 20. Nc5=.> Nd6?! <Zukertork could get B + 2 pawns vs Rook with 20... Nxd4! 21. cxd4 Rxd4 22. Be3 Rxb4 23. Nxb4 Bxb4.> 21. a5 <Black was still threatening 21... a5.> Nb5 <This allows White to win Black's Bishop pair otherwise Black's pawn structure would be broken. 21... Bf8 would impede 22. a6, as after 22... b6, White could not play the tactical 23. Nxc6 since the Bishop could not be taken by the Knight on e7.> 22. a6 Bxd3 23. Nxd3 b6 24. Re3 Kf7 25. Rae1 Rd7? <Pinning himself his Bishop! Zukertork should have played 25... Bd6.> 26. Nb4! g5 27. Bg3 f5 <27... c5 28. bxc5 bxc5 29. Nc6, White has a big edge.> 28. f4! c5 29. Nc6 cxd4 30. cxd4 Kf8 <30... Nxd4 31. Ne5+ with a fork.> 31. Re5! <The simplest.> Nxd4 32. Nxd4 Rxd4 33. Rxf5+ Kg7 34. fxg5?! <34. Rxg5+ seems better since White would have a better pawn structure than in the game.> Bc5? <Losing. 34... Rd7 defends the c pawn and avoids 35. Be5+. Black can free himself from the pinn easily. Then he has 3 pawns vs 2 on the Queen side, meanwhile White has 3 vs 1 on the King side but one of these pawns is doubled. 34... Rd7 would have been Black's best practical chance to fight for a draw.> 35. Rxc5! <The begining of a nice combination leading to a won King and pawns ending.> Rxe1+ 36. Bxe1 bxc5 37. Bc3 Kg6 38. Bxd4 cxd4 39. h4 Kf5 40. Kf2 Ke4 41. Ke2 c5 42. b3 <Stopping the advance of the c pawn.> Ke5 <42... Kf4 43. Kd3, White wins in the same way.> 43. Kd3 Kf4 44. b4! <44... cxb4 45. Kxb4 and then, White takes the b pawn. If 45... Kg4 46. g3!.> 1-0

Feb-27-08  Knight13: 35. Rxc5 kills.
Mar-01-09  just a kid: I like 35.Rxc5!.The easiest ending to win is the King and Pawn ending.
Jul-29-14  Ke2: Lecture with GM Bryan Smith -
Premium Chessgames Member
  nizmo11: Zukertort was outplaying Steinitz, and could have gained a big advantage here:

click for larger view

19... a5! (20.a4 Nxd4 21. Bxc7 Rd7 22. Bxa5 Nb3) 20.Nc2 Bf5 21. Red1 a4! 22. a3 c5 was very strong. A win for Zukertort would have equalized the match.

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