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John Stuart Morrison vs Jose Raul Capablanca
American National (1913), New York, NY USA, rd 4, Jan-24
Indian Game: Wade-Tartakower Defense (A46)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: Mr. Morrison cannot avoid losing a piece.
Premium Chessgames Member
  profK: Effortless by Capa !!
Premium Chessgames Member
  fredthebear: 17...Qc4 looks strange, allowing White to exchange queens and hand Black doubled c-pawns. Surely Capa was concerned about his queen being targeted tactically, so he tried to swap her off like a poorly placed piece. White declined the invitation and promptly failed to coordinate his pieces thereafter while Black swarmed the queenside.
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <fredthebear>
It doesn't look strange to me. After 18. Qxc4 bxc4, White would probably have to defend with 19. Re1 (not 19. Nd2? c3) and Black probably has a slight initiative.
Jan-07-19  ughaibu: Beatgiant: How about 19.Bb2 and if black replies with Rhe8, then Nd2?
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <beatgiant> It’s strange in that it allows Morrison to inflict doubled, isolated pawns. Which is a lot more than 18.Qe3? was ever going to achieve.

ughaibu — 19.Bb2 Nxe4 20.Nxe5 c3 looks good for Black.

Jan-07-19  ughaibu: It does, how about 20.Be5?
Jan-07-19  ughaibu: I should try thinking before I post.
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <keypusher>
On move 17, Black is a pawn up but his castled position looks potentially attackable. In some cases, White can introduce complications with Bd2.

What's a better way for Black to consolidate in that position? I'm not sure Black gets a clear advantage after what you might consider a "normal" move like 17...Nb6.

With 17...Qc4, if White goes for the queen trade, Black doesn't have to worry any more about an attack on his king, the doubled and isolated pawn is still extra, ...c3 becomes a threat in some lines, and it looks like Black will have nice piece activity.

I do agree that White should have accepted the queen trade. But that would be entering an endgame a pawn down against Capablanca, and maybe Morrison was suffering from "Capaphobia."

Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <beatgiant > I clicked on the SF link — it shows -0.18 for Black after 17.Nf3. So probably Capablanca’s intuition did not desert him in offering the trade, and Morrison’s 11.e4 was not an inexplicable mistake like I thought. (Usual caveats about a shallow search apply.)

<Capaphobia> I considered that, but I think back then Capa was just as feared in the middlegame as in the ending. Of course it never feels great to trade queens a pawn down.

<ughaibu> Don’t. Error is the portal to discovery.

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <keypusher>
My earlier suggestion 17...Nb6 undefends the e-pawn and allows 18. Bb2.

As for earlier play, Black's 16...0-0-0 took me by surprise. Maybe that would have been a good time to play 16...Nb6. Capablanca must have been thinking already about ...Qc4 and potential endgames.

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