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Siegbert Tarrasch vs Jose Raul Capablanca
Berlin (1928), Berlin GER, rd 1, Oct-11
Spanish Game: Morphy Defense. Modern Steinitz Defense (C71)  ·  0-1

ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jun-27-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: The word Rücktritt has both meanings in German, <sneaky pete>. Do you have an outstanding book collection? Just chess?
Jun-27-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: <both meanings>

But you can't say he resigned the game and therefore it was not concluded. Resignation would be a conclusion. Its clear that he withdrew/resigned from the tournament during adjournment and game was not resumed.

Jun-27-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: What do you mean you cannot say that? I just did in my last few notes. By withdrawing/resigning (your choice of words, very much conceding the point) the game Tarrasch did not allow it to be played and follow its natural course. We shall never know how Capa was thinking of winning, nor if Tarrasch would have been able to find some devious defense. (Unless perhaps we could ask not so little now little Heinrich Kübel.)
Jun-27-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: If you believe Tarrasch personally resigned from this game rather than withdrawing from the tournament thereby losing the game that way, then thats fine. I just don't think thats the case. Peace, out..
Jun-27-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: Hey, <Calli>, you cannot quit until we find out what was wrong with Tarrasch.
Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn and Two: Regarding his illness and withdrawal from the 1928 Berlin tournament, Tarrasch wrote: <The rumor that I had not wanted to take part even before the competition began and was dragooned into doing so by the organiser is an impudent fabrication. I travelled up to Berlin five or six days beforehand in order to acclimatise myself and was fighting fit. On the eve of the competition I committed a dietary error which led to a sleepless night. In the middle of the first game against Capablanca I experienced pains which led me to fear a recurrence of my old gall-bladder complaint and, in the course of the day, the symptoms of jaundice appeared, clarifying the diagnois...>.

Quotation taken from the tournament booklet - Berlin Tageblatt 1928 - Edited by A.J. Gillam

Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn and Two: The Berlin Tageblatt 1928 tournament booklet also noted the following statement from the Deutsche Schachzeitung: <The resignation of Dr. Tarrasch was, of course, a bitter blow to the tournament and was the result of a gall-bladder complaint. He had in the meantime lost against Rubinstein and Tartakower and was in an unfavorable position against Capablanca. Dr. Tarrasch has stated that, in view of his poor health, he will not be participating in any further major chess competitions. Furthermore, it is strongly denied that Dr. Tarrasch asked to be excused even before the start of the tournament.>
Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: <Pawn and Two> Thanks for clearing that up! Indeed, Dr T was then about 66 years old and did not play again in major events.
Jun-28-08  DukeAlba: <<sneaky pete>From round 1 of the tournament. The game was adjourned at this point and not resumed. Tarrasch withdrew from the tournament after round 3 because of health problems>

This reminds of one time that someone (I forgot who it was) mentioned that they had never beaten anybody who was healthy... The point being that players always say things like "I felt ill"... "I had a fever"... "I lost because of health reasons" or any other excuse.... I say ENOUGH EXCUSES!

Jun-28-08  DukeAlba: Its rude in my opinion, to say that you lost because of ill health... It downplays your opponent's victory by attributing it not to his or her skill but to your illness...

A real classy player would never cite ill health as an excuse for a lost match... I think this goes for ALL chess players...

Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: <"adjourned, and, due to Dr. Tarrasch's resignation, never concluded. It is questionable if Black can win.">

Ok, this ought to be settled: I believed the White cause lost because of the variations that follow.

<49.Ke3 Nc6 50.Bb2 Nd4 51.Kf4...>

Pretty much forced on the White side. White can permute his moves, but can not in good conscience abandon the f5 pawn, as 51.Kd3 Ke5 52.Ke3 Kxf5 53.Bxd4 cxd4+ 54.Kxd4 Kg4 ... yields an easily won pawn endgame for Black.

<51...c4>


click for larger view

And now White looks to be in a pickle: The c-pawn threattens its deadly march -- 52...c3 53.Bxc3 Ne2+ -- and White does not seem to have an adequate defense:

<I. 52.Ke3(!) Nxf5+ 53.Kd2 Ke6 (53.Kf4 Ke6) 54.Kc3 Nd6 ...>


click for larger view

<II. 52.Ba1 c3 53.Ke3 c2 54.Kd2 Nb3+ 55.Kxc2 Nxa1+ 56.Kb2 Ke5 57.Kxa1 Kxf5 58.Kb2 Ke4 ...>


click for larger view

<III. 52.Kg4 Ke4 53.h3 Nxf5 54.Bxf6 Nd4! ...>


click for larger view

But now I am not sure if Black has the win in the variation I., after White continues

<55.Kd4...> and, say, <55...f5 56.Bc1...>


click for larger view

White pieces came alive and Black can not hold onto his extra pawn.

Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: For a completion, I should add that I also considered the posibility of a (Shirov-like) play -- <49.Ke3 Ng4+ 50.Kf3 Nxh2+ 51.Kg3 Nf1+ 52.Kg2 Ke4 53.Kxf1 Kxf5 ...> -- where the three passed pawns may overwhelm White's bishop, while White winning prospects are nill because his bishop is of the wrong color with respect to the promotion square <a8>.


click for larger view

However, White does not have to chase the knight, but rather go after the f6-pawn instead: <49.Ke3 Ng4 50.Kf4 Nxh2 51.Bb2 h5 52.Bxf6 Ng4 53.Bb2...>


click for larger view

Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: Tartakower, annotating his win over Tarrasch from this tournament:

<This quite subtle victory, obtained after so stern a resistance by my adversary, was embittered by the fact that Dr. Tarrasch suddenly felt extremely ill thereafter. Putting into practice the threat that he uttered after his preceding defeat (in the first round) against Rubinstein, he 'abandoned' the tournament, thereby allowing the two points so hardly won from him to be erased from the table.>

Rather cranky!

Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: It was a fine game from Tarty: Tarrasch vs Tartakower, 1928

And, for a good measure, here is also the pointer to the third game: Rubinstein vs Tarrasch, 1928

Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: Thanks to the people that have remarked about Tarrasch's health issue. About the <Gypsy> variations: some time ago I took a look at this ending and it seemed not that very much won by Black. In particular I stumbled precisely upon the variation that <Gypsy> gives as doubtful. In principle the Bishop is better in these types of Pawn structures, and Capa's advantage had to do with Space. I gave up on trying to show the win.
Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn and Two: <Gypsy> After 49.Ke3, Fritz preferred (-1.03) (32 ply) 49...h5. However, after 50.h3 h4 51.Ke2 Ke4 52.be3 Nc6 53.Bf2 Nd4+, I could not prove a win for Black, (-1.22) (31 ply) 54.Kd2 Nxf5 55.a5 bxa5 56.Bxc5 a4 57.Ke2 Nd4+ 58.Kf2 Nc6.

In the line you indicated, 49.Ke3 Nc6 50.Bb2 Nd4 51.Kf4? c4 52.Ke3 Nxf5+ 53.Kd2, Black is winning after 53...Nd4 54.Ke3 f5 55.Kf4 c3.

Also, in your line 49.Ke3 Nc6 50.Bb2 Nd4 51.Kd3 Ke5 52.Ke3? Kxf5 53.Bxd4 cxd4+ 54.Kxd4 Kg4, Black is winning.

However, White can improve on these variations. After 49.Ke3 Nc6 50.Bb2 Nd4 51.Kd3! Ke5 52.Bc3 Kxf5 53.Kc4 Ke6 54.a5 bxa5, Fritz indicates the game is equal (.00) (29 ply) 55.Bxa5, or approximately equal with (-.10) (29 ply) 55.Kxc5.

After 49...Nc6 50.Bb2 Nd4 51.Kd3, Fritz prefers the line 52...c4+ 52.Kd2, with some advantage for Black, (-.62) (27 ply) 52...h5 53.h3 Ke4 54.Bc3 Nf3+ 55.Kc2 Kxf5 56.a5 bxa5 57.Bxa5.

Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: <Pawn and Two>, in your variation 50.h3 h4 51.Ke2 Ke4 52.be3 Nc6 53.Bf2 Nd4+ 54.Kd2=, try 52...Nd3.
Jun-28-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Gypsy: Thx <P+2>!

<In the line you indicated, 49.Ke3 Nc6 50.Bb2 Nd4 51.Kf4? c4 52.Ke3 Nxf5+ 53.Kd2, Black is winning after 53...Nd4 54.Ke3 f5 55.Kf4 c3.>

Oh, the <54...f5!> is a great move! I completely missed it. Of course, the unkind point I missed is that if <55.Bxd4...>, then <55...f4+ 56.Kxf4 Kxd4 ... > and Black has a won pawn endgame once again.

---

Surprised to hear about the 51.Kf4 vs 51.Kd3. (I will have to digest that when I get more time.)

Jun-29-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn and Two: <maxi> I had Fritz review your suggested variation: 49.Ke3 h5 50.h3 h4 51.Ke2 Ke4 52.Be3 Nd3.

Fritz indicated: (-1.28) (32 ply) 53.Kd2 Nb2 54.Bf2 Nxa4 55.Bxh4 Kxf5. At this point, an updated evaluation showed: (-1.41) (32 ply) 56.Ke3 b5 57.Be1.

On his 57th move, Black has several choices, but all seem to lead to a drawn position: (-1.37) (28 ply) 57...Kg6 58.Ke4 Nb2 59.Bf2 f5+ 60.Kd5 c4 61.Be1 Kg5 62.Bc3 Na4 63.Bd2+ Kh4 64.Ke5 c3 65.Bh6; or (-1.43) (28 ply) 57...Nb6 58.Kf3 Nd5 59.h4 c4 60.h5 c3 61.Ke2 Kg5 62.Kd3 Kxh5 63.Ke4 b4 64.axb4 c2 65.Bd2 Nxb4; or (-1.38) (28 ply) 57...c4 58.Bf2 Kg5 59.Kf3 c3 60.Ke4 Kh5 61.Kd4 f5 62.Be3 Kh4 63.Ke5 Kg3 64.Kxf5 Kf3 65.Bg5 c2 66.h4 Nc5 67.Bc1; or (-1.48) (28 ply) 57...Nb2 58.Ke2 Kg6 59.Bf2 c4 60.Bc5 f5 61.Ke3 Kh5 62.Bd4 Nd3 63.Bf6 Kg6 64.Be7 f4+ 65.Ke4 f3 66.Kxf3 c3 67.h4.

A deeper and better search may still find a way for Black to win after 49.Ke3, but it is very difficult due to the active position of White's Bishop.

Jun-29-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: Thank you, <Pawn and Two>. I'll take a look at this silly ending and get back to ChessGames in one or two days.
Jul-04-08
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: Hi. I am back. I am out of ideas; I cannot see a way of beating White. The problem is that every time you come up with a plan for Black, White has just enough time to come up with another active plan. If anybody sees a win, I'll buy him a beer! Or whatever.
Jan-22-12  cybertron: The same capablanca said that in position such af the one after move 28, in a well played endgame should be draw
Mar-12-13  Ulhumbrus: 29 Bd6 enables Black's king to come to e6 with tempo. This suggests 29 Bc7 instead followed by a march of White's king to the opposing side as in the game Capablanca vs J Corzo, 1901 eg 29 Bc7 f6 30 Kf2 Kf7 31 Ke3 Ke6 32 Kd4
Jan-25-16  ToTheDeath: Fine technique starting with ....a4! turning an equal ending into a won one. The good doctor's resignation was not premature- after 49.Ke3 h5! he is going to be zugwanged. For example 50.h3 h4! and White must play 51.a5 giving up a pawn and the game. Or 50.h4 Nc6 51.Bb2 Nd4 52.Kd3 c4+! 53.Kd2 Nf3+ winning both pawns.

Other moves just allow decisive penetration by Black's king and knight. Beautiful endgame mastery from "The Chess Machine"

Jan-25-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Tartakower....This quite subtle victory, obtained after so stern a resistance by my adversary, was embittered by the fact that Dr. Tarrasch suddenly felt extremely ill thereafter. Putting into practice the threat that he uttered after his preceding defeat (in the first round) against Rubinstein, he 'abandoned' the tournament, thereby allowing the two points so hardly won from him to be erased from the table.>

Thereby testing the time-honoured adage that the threat is stronger than its execution.

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