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Emanuel Lasker vs Jose Raul Capablanca
Lasker - Capablanca World Championship Match (1921), Havana CUB, rd 8, Apr-03
Slav Defense: Quiet Variation. Schallopp Defense (D12)  ·  1/2-1/2



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

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Kibitzer's Corner
Nov-17-05  Petrocephalon: "All these maneuvers with the Knight are extremely difficult to explain fully. The student would do well to carefully analyze them."
Well I would... if I was positive Capablanca wasn't pulling my leg.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: <Petrocephalon: ... Well I would... if I was positive Capablanca wasn't pulling my leg. > Lol.

No, he is not pulling our collective leg. He (like Gauss, for instance) is just doing something ahead of its time and does not care enough for the pain to make it all understandeable to us commoners: Capa is playing this as a modern-day hedgehog. Today, we even have books about the dynamic merits of such an approach (eg, Suba), so the explanations come easier.

<15...Rfd8> Capa's intent is to transfer the knight Nd7-b6-c8-e7 so that it will have f5, d5, and c6 under control. But, first things first, Capa will also put in the hedgehogian f7-f6 to take control of the g5 and e5 squares.

<16...Bc7> No good to play Nb6 while the B is on d6. (Also the rook needs scope.)

<17...Nf8> The point is that immediate f7-f6 would drop the e6 pawn.

<20...Nd7> After f6-f6 and Kg8-f7 out of the way, the knight is free to go.

<23...Ne7> And the knight finally arives.

<26...b5> A telling comment by Capa revealing his hedgehog-style frame of mind in this game. Because of the x-ray to c7, White gets a strong, protected a5 passer and the game turns into a dead draw.

Dec-07-05  Petrocephalon: Thanks Gypsy. Not so mysterious... once someone else explains it!
Dec-07-05  Brown: This is not a hedgehog position (d and e pawns on the 3rd rank, open c-file), though it is similar in how it's played.
Mar-02-08  Knight13: This is extremely solid play by both sides.

<Petrocephalon: "All these maneuvers with the Knight are extremely difficult to explain fully. The student would do well to carefully analyze them." Well I would... if I was positive Capablanca wasn't pulling my leg.> Not that I would understand how a World Champ was thinking either!

Nov-23-09  Ulhumbrus: After 23...Ne7 if White attempts to attack Black's e6 pawn by 24 Rc1-e1, 24...Nf5 makes a counter-attack on the d4 pawn.
Sep-22-10  soothsayer8: Interesting that about 10 years after discouraging use of the Slav defense in the notes of Lasker's match against Janowski, he should use it against Lasker in this match.
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