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  WCC Overview
Alekhine vs Bogoljubov 1934

Alekhine-Bogoljubow 1934 In the years since the 1929 World Championship Match a new generation of strong players had just begun to arrive on the scene, including Sammy Reshevsky and Reuben Fine of the US, Paul Keres of Estonia, Mikhail Botvinnik of the USSR, and Salo Flohr of Czechoslovakia, as well as Jose Capablanca, who was still trying unsuccessfully to arrange a return match for the title. Under the circumstances, the chess world reacted with something less than jubiliation when it was announced that Alexander Alekhine's next title defense would be against Efim Bogolubov again. The match was regarded as little more than an exhibition by all, including Alekhine himself, who said such things as this in My Best Games of Chess, 1924-1937:

This game - more than any other - proves how useless from the sporting point of view was the arrangement of this second match, and at the same time explains my indifferent play on a number of occasions.[1]
The match conditions were the best of 30 games, and 6 wins. The match was over after 26 games.

click on a game number to replay game 1234567891011121314151617181920

click on a game number to replay game 212223242526

FINAL SCORE:  Alekhine 8;  Bogoljubov 3 (15 draws)
Reference: game collection WCC Index [Alekhine-Bogoljubov 1934]

NOTABLE GAMES   [what is this?]
    · Game #4     Alekhine vs Bogoljubov, 1934     1-0
    · Game #2     Alekhine vs Bogoljubov, 1934     1-0
    · Game #17     Bogoljubov vs Alekhine, 1934     0-1


  1. World Chess Championships by Graeme Cree

 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 26  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine ½-½651934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD40 Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch
2. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov 1-0371934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD48 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, Meran
3. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine ½-½271934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD22 Queen's Gambit Accepted
4. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov 1-0611934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD10 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
5. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine ½-½511934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD26 Queen's Gambit Accepted
6. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov ½-½601934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD11 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
7. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine ½-½171934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD28 Queen's Gambit Accepted, Classical
8. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov ½-½661934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchE24 Nimzo-Indian, Samisch
9. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine 0-1461934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchA44 Old Benoni Defense
10. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov 0-1811934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD52 Queen's Gambit Declined
11. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine 0-1621934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchA92 Dutch
12. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov ½-½751934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD49 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, Meran
13. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine ½-½741934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchA47 Queen's Indian
14. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov ½-½541934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD43 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
15. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine ½-½701934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD21 Queen's Gambit Accepted
16. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov 1-0431934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchC77 Ruy Lopez
17. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine 0-1411934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD24 Queen's Gambit Accepted
18. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov ½-½281934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchA46 Queen's Pawn Game
19. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine ½-½581934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD27 Queen's Gambit Accepted, Classical
20. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov ½-½441934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD52 Queen's Gambit Declined
21. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine 0-1631934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD02 Queen's Pawn Game
22. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov ½-½421934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchE34 Nimzo-Indian, Classical, Noa Variation
23. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine 1-0581934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD23 Queen's Gambit Accepted
24. Alekhine vs Bogoljubov 0-1391934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD11 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
25. Bogoljubov vs Alekhine 0-1441934Alekhine - Bogoljubov World Championship RematchD11 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 26  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 4 OF 4 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jan-12-14  Petrosianic: <The introduction to this page is very missleading. Suggesting that players like Keres, Reshevsky and Fine were serious contenders for the WC-title in 1934 is just laughable.>

The intro says that these players "had just begun to arrive on the scene", which is completely true. But the next sentence does imply that they were actual contenders at this time, which of course, they weren't. There was only one reasonable challenger in 1934, and that was Capablanca, whom Alekhine was ducking. According to Euwe, Alekhine played the matches with himself and Bogo because he needed the money, which is why he could complain about Bogo being there but play him anyway.

Jun-09-14  offramp: The photo to accompany this match at the top of the page reminds me of those Stalin-era photographs/drawings where non-persons are erased from history and new ones put in as they come into favour.
Sep-01-14  ssitimefill: It seems like this championship was held in at least 5 different cities.

I imagine that driving between cities in Germany in 1934 took much longer and was much less comfortable than would be the case today.

Did no Nazi think that the constant changing of location might have a negative effect on the quality of the chess being played?

Premium Chessgames Member
  WCC Editing Project:


I believe that the match may have been spread out among several cities to help raise the purse demanded by <Alekhine>.

The State of Baden arranged the match, raising 40,000 Reichsmark to cover all expenses.

The Nazi chess establishment of the time actually took a dim view of this match:

Otto Zander, Federal Chairman of the Nazi sponsored Großdeutscher Schachbund, "noted that it was considered inappropriate that Bohgoljubov was called a German Master or representative of Germany."

This was because Bogoljubov was Russian by birth, and not "of German blood."

-<Rainer Buland, Bernadette Edtmaier, and Georg Schweige, "The guestbook of the World Chess Cup 1934 in Germany: facsimile, research, history and environment" (Lit Verlag June 11, 2014), p.28>

Paraphrased material translated by User: Karpova

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <Petrosianic>
<Capablanca, whom Alekhine was ducking> To be precise, he was asking a double appearance fee if Capablanca played in the same tournament as himself, and he accepted a world title challenge from Capablanca that fell through due to Capablanca's failure to raise the stakes.
Nov-13-14  Petrosianic: Bradley Beach put up the money for the match, and Alekhine ignored the offer and played Bogo instead. It was only after the Depression hit that the London Rules became too tough to meet.
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <Petrosianic>
<Bradley Beach put up the money for the match> I've seen that claim posted here before but without a source. Can you give me a pointer to the reason you believe it?
Nov-13-14  Petrosianic: It's mentioned in this book:

Nov-13-14  Petrosianic: I'm going down to the garage to dig out a Chess Life cover for Sally Simpson. I'll try to grab that book and find the Bradley Beach quote too while I'm there.
Nov-13-14  Sally Simpson: Hi Petrosianic,

You are a star.

I have the Schonberg book, I'll thumb through it at work tomorrow.

From what I understand (recall) was it not first the money and then the format (Alekhine wanted first to six - Capa wanted a set match of games.) That stopped the match.

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <Sally Simpson>
It's been posted above here <Apr-13-08 MichAdams> that Capablanca proposed (to FIDE, with copy to Alekhine) a match of fixed 16 games with a faster time limit, which Alekhine rejected. It's not clear there was any financial backing for it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: Or rather, that was posted on the page of the Capablanca-Alekhine match.
Premium Chessgames Member
  WCC Editing Project:

<Petrosianic>, <Sally Simpson>, <beatgiant>

With regard to the Harold C. Schonberg book linked- there is no reference to the Bradley Beach organizers coming up with the $10,000 "London Rules" purse that Alekhine demanded of Capablanca. In fact, there is no mention of any kind to Bradley Beach. Schonberg's entire treatment of the Alekhine-Capablanca remtach negotiations are on p.190, if anyone wishes to check their copy.

I should add that Schonberg's narrative is not properly sourced- there are no footnotes. There are several claims he makes about the negotiations that are not mentioned in Edward Winter's biography of Capablanca, which gives an exhaustive treatment of the Alekhine-Capablanca negotiations. The entirety of Winter's book is properly footnoted to primary contemporaneous sources:

Winter's treatment of the Alekhine-Capablanca rematch negotiations spans pages 207-241.

Premium Chessgames Member
  WCC Editing Project:

Here is a condensed chronology of pertinent events leading up to the <Alekhine-Bogoljubov 1929> match:

A few days after Alexander Alekhine won the Capablanca - Alekhine World Championship Match (1927), both masters made a general agreement to play a rematch sometime within the next year, under the same rules as they had played the first match. Jose Raul Capablanca did not, however, issue a formal challenge at this time.<1> On February 10, 1928 Capablanca wrote FIDE president Alexander Rueb, explaining his ideas about future changes to the world chess championship. Capablanca recommended altering the playing times and reducing the number of games. He also forwarded this letter to Alekhine.<2> Alekhine interpreted this as a wish to change the conditions for their planned rematch, and wrote Capablanca that he refused to play under any new conditions.<3> Capablanca answered publicly, explaining that he had been talking about future matches, not the match with Alekhine, which "he hoped to arrange... under precisely the same conditions as those which obtained at Buenos Aires."<4> In the meantime, on August 24, 1928 Efim Bogoljubov now challenged Alekhine to a world title match.<5> Alekhine accepted in principle, provided that Bogoljubov could "give the guarantees provided for under the rules of London of 1922," which included a guaranteed $10,000 purse.<6> On October 8, 1928 Capablanca now formally challenged Alekhine to a rematch.<6> Alekhine wrote Capablanca that he would give Bogoljubov until January 15, 1929 to "arrange for and give me the guarantees provided for under the rules of London of 1922... In case my match with Mr. Bogoljubov should take place.... I would then be ready to accept your challenge, after the end of that encounter."<6> In November 1928, American organizers offered Bradley Beach, New Jersey as a venue for an Alekhine-Capablanca rematch, but there exists no evidence that they ever raised the required $10,000 purse.<7>

1 "American Chess Bulletin" (March 1928), pp.45-47. In Edward Winter, "Capablanca" p.209; "American Chess Bulletin" (July-Aug 1928), p.108. In Edward Winter, "Capablanca" pp.211-212

2 "American Chess Bulletin" (May 1928), pp.86-87. In Edward Winter, "Capablanca," pp.207-299

3 "American Chess Bulletin" (March 1928), pp.45-47. In Edward Winter, "Capablanca" p.209

4 "American Chess Bulletin" (July-Aug 1928), p.108. In Edward Winter, "Capablanca" pp.211-212

5 "American Chess Bulletin" (Sept-Oct 1928), p.133. In Edward Winter, "Capablanca" p.213

6 "American Chess Bulletin" (Dec 1928), pp. 174-175. In Edward Winter, "Capablanca" p.213

7 W. H. W., "Daily Mail" (16 Nov 1928), p.17. In Edward Winter, <Chess Note 8193>


This is the most recent information about the Bradley Beach offer that has come to light: Edward Winter, <Chess Note 8193>

If anyone can add additional information from reliable sources, especially about the Bradley Beach offer, I would be most grateful if they might post it?

This would greatly help our project.

Premium Chessgames Member
  WCC Editing Project:

To be more precise about what I wrote above: <There are several claims (Schonberg) makes about the negotiations that are not mentioned in Edward Winter's biography of Capablanca, which gives an exhaustive treatment of the Alekhine-Capablanca negotiations.>

Page numbers are given from the Schonberg and Winter books linked in my previous posts.


"In January, 1928... (Capablanca) asked the National Chess Federation of the United States to intercede in his behalf." (p.190)

<Schonberg lists no source for this claim. This claim is not mentioned in Winter's book>


"Alekhine promised to meet Capablanca for a match in the United States in 1929." (p.190)

<Schonberg lists no source for this claim>

<Edward Winter:

In a letter to the "American Chess Bulletin" published in the February 1928 issue (page 29) Alekhine indicated that he was prepared to play Capablanca again: 'Dr. Alekhine also confirmed the report that he had agreed to meet Capablanca during 1929 in a return match... He added "It is perfectly evident that the match in question... must be played on absolutely the same conditions as the first one- namely the rules elaborated by Capablanca himself in London, 1922.'"> (Winter, p.207)

There is no mention of the United States as a promised venue.


Schonberg: "But... (Alekhine) demanded the same conditions as in the Buenos Aires match. Capablanca wanted a sixteen-game match. That gave Alekhine an excuse for dropping the negotiations." (p.190)

<Schonberg lists no source for this claim>

That Alekhine demanded the same conditions as the Buenos Aires match is confirmed by the contemporaneous primary source supplied above by Winter. The rest of Schonberg's passage, however, is inaccurate.

In fact, Capablanca never suggested to Alekhine or anyone else that he wanted to play the rematch in a 16 game format. Rather, Capablanca wrote to Alexander Rueb that in future WCC matches he would prefer this format.

<Capablanca to Rueb, in a letter he also forwarded to Alekhine:

"A limit must be put to the number of games to be played in a match, and in my opinion the limit should be sixteen games."> (Winter, p.208)

Alekhine (and apparently Schonberg) mistook this as a demand for the planned rematch with Capablanca. Capablanca then told the "American Chess Bulletin" what he actually had meant in his letter to Rueb and Alekhine:

<"Capablanca had written that letter, he said, not for the purpose of suggesting any new conditions for the return match, as to which he and his rival had had a through understanding before parting in Buenos Aires, but in order to outline his general ideas on the subject for the guidance of Dr. Rueb and his associates during the discussion of the world championship at the annual business meeting of the International Federation at The Hague later this month."> (Winter, p.211)

Jun-03-16  Russian Patzer: "a new generation of strong players had just begun to arrive on the scene, including Sammy Reshevsky and Reuben Fine of the US, Paul Keres of Estonia, Mikhail Botvinnik of the USSR, and Salo Flohr of Czechoslovakia"

19 y.o Fine and 18 y.o Keres as the Challengers? What a joke!

Botvinnik and Reshevsky were not ready to fight for the world title in 1934 either.

Jun-03-16  Sally Simpson: Hi Russian Patzer,

Agree the others mentioned were not quite ready.

But Salomon Flohr who the following year when he was 26/27 won Gold medal on Board One at the Warsaw Olympiad. (Alekhine got the silver.)

In 1936 there was:

Podebrady (1936)

So maybe an Alekhine - Flohr match instead of this one would have been better. More of a test for the great man instead of Bogoljubov.

Though in their overall individual encounters Alekhine seemed to have had the mockers on Flohr winning 5-0 with 7 draws.

Jun-03-16  Russian Patzer: Hi Sally Simpson,

I think Alekhine-Capa would have been the most interesting match in 1934.

In fact, they were the strongest chessplayers in 1934, because Lasker was too old and B, K, R & F were too young.

Anyway I think generally Keres, Reshevsky, Fine are a little inferior to AAÀ, Flohr is definitely inferior to him, but Botvinnik, Capa and AAA are approximately of the same level.

Sorry for my bad English.

Jun-03-16  RookFile: In 1936 Capa went out and pretty much won everything. Give him a match in 1934 instead -- to say Capa would have been motivated would be to put it mildly.
Jun-03-16  Petrosianic: In 1934, Flohr's record against Alekhine was +0-3=2. (and he ended up 0-5). Flohr might have done as badly as Bogo did, but at least for him it would have been his first chance, not his second, as it was for Bogo.
Jun-03-16  Sally Simpson: Hi Petrosianic,

Although I am aware of Flohr's record v Alekhine I'm thinking that he would have put away some the positions that Bogoljubov squandered in this match.

There again maybe Alekhine might not have played so poorly v Flohr as he did v Bogoljubov and given him the chance.

Jun-04-16  AlicesKnight: <Russian Patzer> <Rookfile> I'm not so convinced of the impact of a 1934 match between Alekhine and Capablanca, given the record of the previous four years or so of both players. Alekhine had won Bled, San Remo, Berne, Paris, Zurich etc. - Capablanca had hardly played much at all. Was it possible for Capa to overcome the lack of practice and find the sharpness? - his return at Hastings 1934/5 was not exactly a success. Yes, he was back in the groove in 1936 (Moscow, Nottingham).
Jun-04-16  Sally Simpson: Hi Alice,

I'm thinking Alekhine may have disagreed you. That is why he ducked him. :)

But it would have been a good match.

Back to my tip. Flohr.

He was incredibly active during his period. Playing in over 50 tournaments between 1928 and 1937 winning (or sharing first) on 24 occasions.

He won...

Hastings (1933/34)

..ahead of Alekhine. As the report says he was better at beating the tail enders than Alekhine.

An Alekhine - Flohr W.C. match was on the cards for 1938 but it fell apart due to sponsorship and political turmoil.

The question does remain if Alekhine was a player who could tune into him, his bogey. History has all kinds of examples of this, the current well known one being Carlsen v Nakamura.

But all it needed was one victory in the match to lay that ghost.

Jun-04-16  RookFile: It's really not a hard question. Capa wasn't motivated, and probably was a little depressed. At some point he thought a match might be possible, so a sufficiently motivated Capa went out and won everything. The beginning, middle and end of whether Capa could play and dominate was his level of motivation.
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: <offramp: The photo to accompany this match at the top of the page reminds me of those Stalin-era photographs/drawings where non-persons are erased from history and new ones put in as they come into favour. >

Yes, Bogo's head looks photoshopped in, and poorly at that.

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