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Geza Maroczy vs George J Beihoff
Manhattan CC ch (1926), New York, NY USA
Colle System (D05)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: An unusual back-rank mate. White's king seems to have loads of room.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: Hmm. Why not just 25...Nxd2? Muddle, muddle, muddle--oh, wait, White has this mate threat. Not so sinple to stop. Looks like we need to check.

Not much choice there. <25...Qe3+>, and the queen is immune due to the Back Rank Uglies. (You did see the bishop on a6, didn't you?) And after <26.Kh1 Qxe+ 27.Rg1 Nf2+> the queens will come off and Black has just won a rook.

Don't need to analyze further. Maroczy is a gentleman who will resign such positions.

Mar-25-14  dfcx: This week is black to move week. White threatening Qxg7#, so black have to hustle. The only check is 25...e3+.

26. Rxe3 Rc1+ 27. Re1 Rxe1+ 28. Nf1 Rxf1#

so black gets a rook
26. Kh1 Qxe1+

Mar-25-14  dfcx: I meant 25...Qe3+
Mar-25-14  nalinw: Yes - unusual - the knight covers one escape square and the bishop makes blocking impossible. Lovely puzzle - not too easy.
Mar-25-14  Cheapo by the Dozen: 25 ... Qe3+, with backrank mate soon to follow.

Remarkably loose around the king for a backrank mate combination. Nice!

Mar-25-14  Cheapo by the Dozen: Oh, whoops, it's not actually a mate.

In that case, we should spell out:

25 ... Qe3+
26 Kh1 Qxe1+
27 Rf1 Nf7+
28 Kg2 Qxe5

The point of the last couple moves is that after 27 Rf1, White had threats of both mate and queen capture, so Black had to defang them both at once.

Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: Black has a bishop for a rook.

White threatens 26.Qxg7# and 26.Qxd5+.

If the rook on e1 disappeared then Black would deliver mate with 25... Qc1+ 26.Nf1 Qxf1#. This suggests, 25... Qe3+:

A) 26.Rxe3 Rc1+ and mate in two.

B) 26.Kh1 Qxe1+ 27.Rg1 Nf2+ 28.Kg2 Qxd2 29.Qxd5+ (29.Kf3 Rc3+ 30.Kg2 Ng4+ and mate in two) 29... Kh8 - + [B+N vs P].

Mar-25-14  dufferps: 25. ... Qe3+ 26.Kh1 (26.Rxe3 Rc1+ 27.Re1 Rxe1#) 26. ... Qxe1+ 27.Rg1 Nf2+ 28.Kg2 Qxd2 29.Re1 Ne4+ 30.Kf3 Qxe1 31.Kg4 Qg1+ 32.Kf3 Rc3+ 33.Kf4 Qxh2+ 34.Kg4 Be2#
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: Beihoff's Send Off. He certainly picked a good day to have a great day. The entire game has much of interest: a textbook-worthy example of how to counter a wing attack with play in the center; a sacrifice to neutralize an attack and seize the initiative; and an offbeat example of a back rank mate.

Unfortunately, I think Maroczy could have defended and won this game because I have doubts about both players' conduct after the Exchange sacrifice. Both 22.Rf2 and 22...h6 look fishy to me. What sayeth the silicon monsters?

Mar-25-14  alkinoos: A very easy puzzle even for a Tuesday since Qe3+ is almost forced.Otherwise black must deal with the mate threat on g7...
Premium Chessgames Member
  hoodrobin: A great combination! I feel I am Alekhine today... no I'm Candidate.
Mar-25-14  Prosperus: Absolutely fantastic!
Mar-25-14  morfishine: <25...Qe3+> forces mate

White's mate threat at <g7> simplified this problem


Mar-25-14  gofer: <25 ... Qe3+>

26 Rxe3 Rc1+
27 Re1 Rxe1+
28 Nf1 Rxf1#

<26 Kh8 Qxe1+>
<27 Rg1 Nf2+>
<28 Kg2 Qxe5>
<29 dxe5 Rc2>


Just like <Phony Benoni> and <Cheapo by the Dozen> I selected the inferior <28 ... Qxe5> which is completely unnecessary. Ba6 is protecting Rc8 from Qe6+, so there is no threat of a draw by perpetual check.

It is obvious, in hindsight, that <28 ... Qxd2> preparing the discovered check and winning a second piece is far better... ...pity!

Mar-25-14  zb2cr: Nice little back-ranker. 25. ... Qe3+ does it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: I had 25...Qc1 is mind. It's probably winning as well, but it's not really as forceful.
Mar-25-14  Pedro Fernandez: Another variation: 25...Qe3+ 26.Kh1 Qxe1+ 27.Nf1 Qxf1+ 28.Rg1 Nf2 mate.
Mar-25-14  RedShield: <Be off with you!>
Premium Chessgames Member
  gawain: I celebrated too soon, seeing the back rank mate 25...Qc1 26 Rxc1 Rxc1# . Would I ever have been surprised when my opponent uncorked 26 Qxg7# instead!
Mar-25-14  goodevans: 25.Qe5? Oops!

I think white's fine until this blunder. 25.Nf3 is a better way to defend d4 and it's not clear that black would have sufficient compensation for his exchange sac since white has as many attacking chances.

<Penguincw: I had 25...Qc1 is mind. It's probably winning as well...>

25...Qc1 26.Qxg7++

Mar-25-14  alexrawlings: Hmm... as a 1800 rated player I'm a bit embarassed to admit that I didn't see this. I spent my time trying to work out if I could get away with <25.. Nxd2> and never even got a sense that a bank rank mate was on.

Still a great learning puzzle and hopefully my chess brain will remember this puzzle if this ever happens to me in a game!

Premium Chessgames Member
  johnlspouge: < <alexrawlings> wrote: Hmm... as a 1800 rated player I'm a bit embarassed to admit that I didn't see this. I spent my time trying to work out if I could get away with <25.. Nxd2> and never even got a sense that a bank rank mate was on. >

After examining material balance, I examine King safety, which determines the continuation here.

The White Kg1 has two squares g1 and h1 available to it, which suggests the back-rank mate. White can play 26.Qe5-e6+ or 26.Qxg7#, so a combination requires forceful play by Black. Thus, the only check 25...Qe3+ is interesting.

Another useful rule is to examine every forcing move, which also draws attention to 25...Qe3+.

Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Black will mate on the back row whether or not white takes the queen. Black must have made a checking move, as his own king is threatened with mate.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <25...Qe3+!!>, and that's it. Pretty tough for a Monday.
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