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Ernst Gruenfeld vs Aron Nimzowitsch
Kecskemet (1927), Kecskemet HUN, rd 8, Jul-03
Nimzo-Indian Defense: Classical Variation (E32)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
May-17-05  Runemaster: A strange game. Nim's 11...Nxe4 leads to a N v 2P's position, and then a bit later it's N v 4 pawns. Grunfeld resigns because he will have to give up his bishop for the 'h' pawn and then Nimzo would win the King and Pawn ending.
May-17-05  Kangaroo: I have to slightly disagree on the last phrase.

"To give up his bishop for the 'h' pawn" is not an easy task in the final position. For instance, 48. Bf4 g5. 49. Bc7 f5 and then it will be really impossible to prevent the f5-f4 movement.

There will be no "King and Pawn ending" - White will face the K+B vs K+Q ending.

I agree that the move 11...Nxe4 was quite a gambling, very common for Nimtzowitsch against opponents such responsible as Gruenfeld.

May-17-05  soberknight: What about 12 Bxc7?
May-18-05  Runemaster: <Kangaroo> quite right.

<Sober> 12...Ke7 and the bishop is trapped.

Oct-18-12  Gambit All: Amazing - Grunfeld is up a piece for 3 pawns in a semi-open position with all his pieces active; but, still he can't win any of his pawns back. This game must have driven Grunfeld nuts.
Oct-19-12  Murky: Soberknight writes, "What about 12 Bxc7?" To which Runemaster responds, "12...Ke7 and the bishop is trapped."

Soberknight is correct. 12 Bxc7 is stronger than the played 12 Bh4. And Runemaster's 12... Ke7 is not so good. 13. c5 rescues the bishop with big advantage.

Best after 12 Bxc7 appears to be the unexpected 12...Nb5! After 13 cxb5 Ke7, the bishop on c7 will fall after black plays Rc8 and then Nf6 & Nd5.

Nimzowitsch was at his peak around the year 1927.

Oct-19-12  thomastonk: <Murky: Nimzowitsch was at his peak around the year 1927.> Nevertheless, in his comments he gave 12.. Ke7 as the reply to 12. Bxc7, and so he overlooked 13.c5! even after the game. ;-)

<12.Bxc7 is stronger than the played 12 Bh4.> Well, this was not clear to me and hence I have asked my silicon friends for advice.

Stockfish 1.9.1 prefers Bh4: +1.09 compared to +0.88 at depth 26.

Houdini 1.5 prefers Bh4 : +0.65 compared to +0.54 at depth 26.

Fritz 13 prefes Bh4: 1.48 compred to +1.25 at depth 25.

Critter 0.80 prefers Bxc7(!): +0.79 compared to +0.78 at depth 22.

Shredder 10 prefers Bh4: +1.04 compared to +0.71 at depth 20.

I have used similar computing times, which result in different depths. A serious judgement would need more carefull inspection of the resulting positions and their possibilities, and hours of time, of course.

Oct-19-12  JimNorCal: Thanks for the useful comments. I was really liking the white position in late move 20s, say move 28 timeframe.
Oct-06-16  Aunt Jemima: Nimzovich got away with murder here.
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: A few rounds later Alekhine defeated Nimzovich with 6 e3. 10..Nxe4?! seems dubious and had White continued 14 d5 he would have maintained the advantage.

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