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Heinrich Wolf vs Akiba Rubinstein
Teplitz-Schönau (1922), Teplice-Sanov CSR, rd 11, Oct-13
Four Knights Game: Spanish. Symmetrical Variation (C49)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
Dec-08-02  ughaibu: Rubinstein finds an amusing way to wind things up. He sacrifices the a-pawn then the h-pawn.
Nov-14-03  ughaibu: Again, if this one won a brilliancy prize I think it's mainly a negative comment on the rest of the games played at this tournament.
Nov-14-03  Benjamin Lau: I like how Rubinstein effortlessly exploits the open files on two different sides of the board. I don't what kind of games during this era received brilliancy prizes though, so I don't know if this deserves one.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessical: This game won the sixth Brilliancy Prize. It did so I would suggest for the ending.
Nov-15-03  Benjamin Lau: I thought that Rubinstein only won 4 brilliancy prizes at the 1922 tournament. Do you mean this is the 4th one?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessical: No, I mean that there were five other games in the tournament which also receieved prizes, and which were considered superior to this particular game.
Nov-15-03  Benjamin Lau: Okay, I see. Of those five games that were superior, three were Rubinstein's then, right?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessical: <Benjamin Lau> Unfortunately, I do not know the full list, but Rubinstein vs Tarrasch, 1922 was awarded prize number 7, and this game received prize number 6.

Maroczy vs Tartakower, 1922 won the third prize much to Tartakower's disgust. It is a game I commend to you for its R sac on move 17.

Dec-03-05  chesscrazy: Beautiful game that won the brilliancy prize.
The good moves: 21...Nh8!!, 44...a5!!, 54...Rb8!!. If you need more questions about this game than you can ask me by kibitzing.
Premium Chessgames Member
  tamar: Putting the King on g5 where it is absolutely safe is not a bad touch either.

44...a5 invites 45 Qxa5 Rb2 when neither the Queen nor the King have a good way to avoid the knight fork on b3.

Jan-13-06  DanielBryant: What sort of time limit was this played at? Black's 50th-53rd seem to obviously be "time pressure" moves, and I know that they played at some unusual time limits back then.
Jan-30-07  Archives: In this tournament Teplitz-Schonau in 1922 he won 6 games, 4 of which were awarded brilliancy prizes!

This was one of those 4 games and the others are

Rubinstein vs Maroczy, 1922

Rubinstein vs Tarrasch, 1922

P F Johner vs Rubinstein, 1922

Jul-17-07  Karpova: <DanielBryant: What sort of time limit was this played at? Black's 50th-53rd seem to obviously be "time pressure" moves, and I know that they played at some unusual time limits back then.>

Classical. These kind of moves are typical for Rubinstein and you will encounter them frequently when replaying his games. He repeated those moves to gain time even when not in time trouble. A very sensible man!

Jul-28-07  sanyas: Rubinstein played this one practically a piece up.
Dec-01-07  GameGod123: Reasonable play from Rubinstein. At his prime, he seemed to play at the same level as the average Capablanca, often laying rise to four excellent moves. Quite surprising for his time.
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: <tamar>44...a5 invites 45 Qxa5 Rb2 when neither the Queen nor the King have a good way to avoid the knight fork on b3.

46. ♕a3 ♘b3+ 47. ♔d3 ♕b5+ 48. c4 ♕b6 and mate will quickly follow.

Source: Irving Chernev, "Wonders and Curiosities of Chess", Dover Publications, 1974

Jun-07-09  romeon: Should black have played 45...Rb2 (?)

Leads to check with knight and capture of bishop.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: It's easy to fall in love with the finish of this game, with pieces dashing madly all over the board and rook-pawns being sacrificed left and right. But <romeon>?'s question about <45...Rb2> is well taken; it seems both an elegant and quicker way to win:

click for larger view

The obvious threat is 46...Nb3+ winning the queen, but the secondary idea is clearling the file for the queen to come in via b5 or b6. (To a problemist, this resembles the "Bristol" theme.) And White has no effective defense.

Let's try <46.Kc1 Nb3+ 47.cxb3 Rxg2>.

click for larger view

A devastating case of the Absolute 7th. Black's queen is Comin' Round the Mountain via b6 and White can do nothing. In fact, in this line White probably does better to just give up the queen with 47.Kxb2 Nxa1+ 48.Qxa1, though Black is easily winning.

Oj <45...Rb2+ 46.Ke2>, a typical line is <46...Rxc2+ 47.Kf1 Nd3 48.Kg1 Qb6+ 49.Kh2 Rxg2+ 50.Kxg2 Qf2+ 51.Kh3 Qg3#>.

Queen moves in the first diagram fare no better. <46.Qa3 Nb3+ 47.Kd3> (47.Kd1 Rb1+ 48.Ke2 Qb5+ and mates) <Qb5+ 48.c4 Qb6>

click for larger view

White has no time to take anything. Another nasty finish is <49.c5 Nxc5+ 50.Kd2 Nxe4+ 51.fxe4 Qf2+> with mate to follow.

I think Fischer or Kasparov probably would have played it this way; the finish, with White so utterly helpless against the Hammer Blows of Fate, is in their style. But against Wolf, Rubinstein won the way he wanted to.

Feb-21-16  southeuro: not sure how black would proceed if white were to take a5 with rook instead, ie. 37. Ra5... can't white simply pressure the a-pawn and prevent its advance, possibly with a timely Bf1 if needed? thanks

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