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Jonathan C Benjamin vs Graham Carter
"Joel on a Roll" (game of the day Sep-23-2005)
London Amateur Championship (1982), London ENG
Bishop's Opening: Boden-Kieseritsky Gambit (C27)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Sep-23-05  rya: f6 IMO is a great play. If I had to critique any of black's play it would be completely ignoring white's 9 move attack for material gain. I don't know if a lot of players could see that through that brilliant net!
Sep-23-05  EmperorAtahualpa: 11.Nxd5 and 13.Ng6+ are quite nice moves....

Also, 9.Nfd7 is just a very bad move though.

<al wazir> I suppose you mean 9...Nbd7? I agree with your analysis anyway. Perhaps also 9...h6?

Instead of 5...Be7 I would recommend 5...c5.

Sep-23-05  Marvol: Carter must've been seriously disappointed.

He defends tersely and imaginatively against poor White attacking moves like 11.Nxd5? (giving away the knight), 13. Ng6+? (giving away the other one), 14.h5? which leaves the bishop on d5 hanging - a mistake duly punished by Black with the deep tactical combination 14...Qa5+! and 15...Qxd5 - threatening to destroy the underdefended White kingside starting with Qxg2 - and finally 17. Rh8?? blundering away the rook. Meanwhile Black shows the paucity of white's attack by removing his kingside defence with 9...Nfd7! and 10...f6!!, inviting the premature attack that should have been White's doom.

Then Black succumbs to the White schwindel 18.Qh3+?!, a little trap that Black unexplicably falls into: 18...Kg8?? followed by 19.Qh7#.

A poor performance by White unjustly rewarded.

Sep-23-05  soberknight: If White wanted to be truly evil, he could have played 15 Ke2, then sacrificed the queen's rook also before giving mate. :)
Sep-23-05  kevin86: <Marvol> I know your piece had to be satirical as you marked white's good moves with a question,as you did black's forced final move. For this I challenge you to a dual-or a chess game. My first move:1 h4!!!!!

The game was good,but brilliant,no.

Sep-23-05  meloncio: <Runemaster><"Get Carter" would have been a good title for this game.> I agree, a splendid pun is lost. It's a great movie, and my Caine's favourite.
Sep-23-05  MaxxLange: <Marvol:> Well done. Do you give internet lessons? I'd like to improve my play with the Black pieces.
Sep-23-05  YouRang: <Marvol> For a while there, I thought you were out of your mind. ;)

17. Rh8+!! A rook sacrifice that gains only a tempo, but a game-winning tempo.

Sep-23-05  MoonlitKnight: I uploaded this game, and I think it's brilliant. It simply belongs in the ranks of the immortals. Benjamin sacrifices all his minor pieces and a rook to boot, ending up mating his opponent after only 19 moves! A powerful and beautiful combination.
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: <EmperorAtahualpa: <al wazir> I suppose you mean 9...Nbd7?> Yes, chess notation is hell for dislexics.
Sep-23-05  Koster: If you ever read books like Art of Attack or art of Checkmate you will see that sacs like this are so standard that they could be considered technique. Another good book is Bronstein's 200 Open Games, where he gives guidelines for white and black in these openings. For black it's very important never to fall behind in development by more than 1 or at most 2 pieces in open positions. Look at blacks queenside here - he was giving white odds of three pieces!
Sep-23-05  MaxxLange: The finishing tactics may be routine, but I still think it is a brilliant game. I'm reminded of Spielmann's remark that he can see combinations as well as Alekhine, but can't get into positions where he can force them.

White played with vigor and imagination after the passive 6...Be7 and 8...c6, and, after 9..Nfd7?! 10. h4! 10 f6? Black's position is already critical. Benjamin's play from there is so strong and beautiful and forcing! Sure, it is not in the league of the GM classics, but it's a brilliant and incisive miniature.

The book The Art of Checkmate is definitly the real deal, a very affordable paperback from Dover with all the basic mating patterns. It has a nice format of a bare pattern, a couple of problems with the pattern, and then an example game (often master v. NN) with the mate. It's by J. Dumont, who was French champion in the 1930s.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Eggman: <<For black it's very important never to fall behind in development by more than 1 or at most 2 pieces in open positions. Look at blacks queenside here - he was giving white odds of three pieces!>>

The position after 10.h4 is not truly open. The center pawns d4 vs ...d5 qualify this as a "fixed center". 10...f6?? allows White to open things up with 11.Nxd5!

Sep-25-05  MoonlitKnight: <sacs like this are so standard that they could be considered technique.> No, they're not. Well, maybe each one is standard by itself. But that all these should occur in one single miniature of 19 moves is an extremely rare thing.
Sep-26-05  Marvol: <kevin86: <Marvol> For this I challenge you to a dual-or a chess game. My first move:1 h4!!!!!>

I reply: 1...d5?????
Totally bedazzled by this brilliant opening Black makes a beginners' error. Not losing immediately was the necessary 1...b5!!!! after which Black's position is difficult but tenable. After this blunder however he resigns in digust: 1-0. There is no way to avoid the Queen sac on move 22 that secures the mate-in-12 combination to follow.

Congrats Kevin, you got me there!

Sep-26-05  Marvol: <MaxxLange: <Marvol:> Well done. Do you give internet lessons? I'd like to improve my play with the Black pieces.>

Well my first lesson is out there and it's free: Simply add '!'s to your own moves and '?' to your opponents. Already makes you look a lot better player :-).

Feb-08-09  WhiteRook48: wow, sacs everything but Q, B, and R
Jul-01-10  tarikhk: who says that romanticism is dead?
Aug-03-10  sevenseaman: Tempi! Benjamin still had a piece to lose but not the time.
Aug-25-12  Cemoblanca: Greetings from Alekhine! ;0)

Great game!

May-11-15  Martin Benjamin: This is actually a game played by my eldest brother, Jon Benjamin, a strong British amateur, who sadly died in 2000. Some of his games in the early to mid 1980s have been understandably but wrongly attributed to GM Joel (e.g. Rumens v Benjamin).
May-11-15  Martin Benjamin: It was actually played in 1975 at the London Amateur Championship. It was published in the July 2000 edition of CHESS magazine as part of an obituary to Jon.
May-11-15  Martin Benjamin: And it was Graham Carter, not H Carter
Premium Chessgames Member
  Stonehenge: <played in the 1982 London Amateur Championship>

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: This game is one of a stock of games I added to my memory for when I'm in front of demo board. The kids love these games and I love showing them.

Easy to remember and so instructive. It's a mini classic played by a 'normal' chess player, not a super-duper GM. This makes it all the more charming and sinks in the hook. You too can do this.

Tartakower said; 'The blunders are all there on the board, waiting to be made." I say so are the magical moves and they are there for everyone and anyone to play.

And if you use it in a class you must mention the refutation to the mundane...

click for larger view

17.Qh3 it does not work due 17...Qe4+ and Qxg6. (17.Rh3 was not playing to the gallery, it's the best and only move. Never chicken out once you are on the sacrificial path, you must keep adding more fuel to the fire and never count the pieces off the board - because they don't count!) Bravo!

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