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Alfred Schroeder vs Oscar Chajes
Rice Memorial (1916), New York, NY USA, rd 13, Feb-03
Italian Game: Italian Variation (C50)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: I can't believe this game has no kibitzing. You see, it had a enormous effect on chess history.

The Rice Memorial tournament (New York, 1916) was played in two stages. A fourteen-player round robin was to qualify four players for a final section to decide the four top prizes, with a fifth prize going to the top non-qualifier. As a result of this last round loss, Chajes finished fifth in the preliminary, one-half point short of qualifying for the final.

However, as reported in the <Brooklyn Daily Eagle> of Sunday, February 6, 1916:

<"Five players, instead of four, will compete in the final state of the Rice Memorial chess masters tournament as the result of action taken at a meeting of the players and managers, with W. M. de Visser, the referee, in the chair, held at the rooms of the Manhattan Chess Club yesterday afternoon. Jose R. Capablanca, with 12 points; D. Janowski, B. Kostic and A. Kupchik, each with 8 1/2, had qualified for the finals, but Oscar Chajes, the fifth prize winner, was added to the list as a result of the action. Chajes, it appears, after having a draw offered to him in his last game with Schroeder in the thirteenth round, played on in an effort to win, under the impression that only by so doing would he be considered for the finals. In this he was mistaken, but the players yesterday all agreed to let him in with eight points and to play the extra rounds necessary to give him a chance for the higher prizes.">

So naturally Chajes won a game from Capablanca in the Final. That's gratitude for you. After that loss, Capablanca began his eight-year unbeaten streak over a total of 63 games. Had Chajes not been admitted to the final, the streak would have stretched for 10 years (1914-1924) and 93 games.

Yes, indeed, a very important game! And now it has some kibitzing.

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Prelim, Round 13 (Thursday, February 3)
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from American Chess Bulletin 1916 by Phony Benoni

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