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Curt von Bardeleben vs Alexander Alekhine
Duesseldorf (1908), Duesseldorf GER, rd 1, Aug-??
Philidor Defense: Hanham Variation (C41)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: Alekhine called Von Bardeleben an Elderly kindly gentleman who was quite lacking in fighting ambition and what was worse, in any real class as a chessplayer. Von Bardeleben was 48 years old then, not quite elderly. the poor guy suffering hardship in Germany commited Suicide in 1924. he played Steinitz in the famous game at Hastings 1895 where he left the playing hall rather than resign, and lost on time.
Dec-09-05  refutor: does anyone have the games from the rest of this match? in his book "107 Great CHess Battles" he mentions that he won the Dusseldorf title from von Bardeleben in 1908 4.5-0.5, this being one of the games. none of the games (this included) are in megabase...does anyone have the other games?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: <refutor> Sorry mate but you are going to be disappointed. Skinner & Verhoeven say that only this game and a small game fragment have survived from the match.

The game fragment with Alyekin playing Black goes 1.e4 e5 2.f4 ♗c5 3.♘f3 d6 4.b4

A great pity that the match didn't attract the kind of attention that would have insured the survival of the rest of the gamescores.


Feb-12-11  Llawdogg: Beautiful game by the young, teen-aged Alekhine.
Apr-04-17  cwcarlson: 13.Bd3? is too passive; 13.ab cb 14.Nd5 Qc4 15.Ne7+ Kh8 16.f3 is =. Better was 12...a5 with advantage.
Jul-13-19  SVarden: It is indeed a shame that the remaining gamescores appear to be lost, but WWI was raging and most other things had to take a back seat. My computations conclude that Alekhine was just 15 when the game was played. And that was in the days when teen-aged GMs didn't exist.

The gamescore with comments is included in Fred Reinfeld's "The Development of a Chess Genius." Dover Publications, 1959, pp 40-42.

Mar-11-20  jith1207: I went the slower 31..b2 route

Should've analyzed further as solution is the same combination but in the most effective order of moves.

Mar-11-20  Cheapo by the Dozen: I got this one at Monday/Tuesday speed. That was partly luck. When I saw that the game line erased various White threats, it was in some cases the first time I'd noticed the threats at all. :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  agb2002: Black has a rook for a knight.

White threatens Bxa8.

White's back rank becomes defenseless after 31... Qxf1+ 32.Kxf1 Ra1+ 33.Qc1 (33.Bc1 b2 wins) b2 34.g3 (34.b8=Q Rxc1+ and mate in two) 34... Rxc1+ 35.Kg2 b1=Q wins decisive material.

Mar-11-20  Walter Glattke: A) 34.g3 cxb1Q+ 35.Qxc1 Rxc1+ 36.Ne1 R1 or R8xe1# B) 34.Ne5 bxc1Q+ 35.Qxc1 Rxc1+ 36.Ke2 Rxe5+ 37.Kd3 Rb5 C) Always 31.-Qxf1+ 32.Kxf1 Ra1+ 33.Qc1 b2 34.Qe1 R1xe1+ 35.Nxe1 Rxe1+ 36.Kxe1 b1Q+ 37.Ke2 Qxb7 C2) 35.-b1Q D) 31.Rb1 b2 32.h3 Ra1 33.Qf5 g6 34.Qxf6 Rxb1+ 35.Kh2 Qxf2 36.b7/Bg3 Rh1+ 37.Kxh1 b1Q+ 38.Kh2 Q1g1#
Mar-11-20  Granny O Doul: <SVarden> It would be a stretch to say WWI was "raging" in 1908.
Mar-11-20  saturn2: By 31 b7 White is about to play bxa8Q but black is quicker with a check:


32. Kxf1 Ra1+ 33. Bc1 
(Qc1 Rxc1+ 34. Bxc1 b2)
b2 34. Ne1 b1=Q 

Mar-11-20  jith1207: Was Sneaky doing a double act play as himself and Crafty, above?
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: <jith>, yep, Daniel occasionally enjoyed pretending to be just another kibitzer while in Sneaky mode. The stilted language and faux uncertainty("I've heard 1. g4 isn't a good move. Is that right?") as seen in the first post were typical.
Mar-11-20  malt: Have 31...Q:f1+ 32.K:f1 Ra1+ 33.Bc1 b2
Mar-11-20  TheaN: A forced combination that requires some counterattack foresight from Black, but is otherwise not incredibly tricky: <31....Qxf1+!> and Black's first after <32.Kxf1 Ra1+ 33.Qc1 (Ne1 Rxe1#; Bc1 similar) b2>, as there's no way for White to defend c1 again, the piece is pinned, a1 is also defended by the pawn and bxc1Q comes with check. White can prevent mate for a while longer but goes down all major pieces for two minor pieces after <34.g3 Rxc1 35.Kg2 b1=Q -+>. Should be enough :>
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: Easier than yesterday!
Mar-11-20  paavoh: I saw 31. - Qxf1+ 32. Kxf1 Ra1+ 33. Qc1 Rxc1+ 34. Bxc1 b2 35. Bxb2 Bxb2 with a win first, then found that 33.Bc1 b2 wins as well.
Mar-11-20  Mendrys: <jith1207: Was Sneaky doing a double act play as himself and Crafty, above?>

No, this was not Sneaky doing a double act. Crafty was an account created by the Chessgames administrators to provide computer analysis.

Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: No trip!
Mar-11-20  Damenlaeuferbauer: After long pondering, the immortal Alexander Alekhine finally found the temporary queen sacrifice 31.-,Qxf1+ 32.Kxf1,Ra1+ 33.Bc1 (33.Qc1,b2 -+) 33.-,b2 -+. I have to concede, that I did not know, that Alekhine and the great German chess player Curt von Bardeleben, whose most famous game is his lost battle of Hastings in 1895 against Wilhelm Steinitz, played a game together. Before 1914, von Bardeleben visited the father of the world-famous German author and soldier Ernst Juenger jun. (1895 - 1998, "Storms of Steel" [1920], "On the Marble Cliffs" [1939]), in Bad Rehburg, a little town near Han[n]over in Lower Saxonia, Ernst Juenger sen., but Juenger jun. remembered him more than half of a century later in 1967 as "von Wurtensleben".
Premium Chessgames Member
  chrisowen: No oh one of the greatest?
Mar-11-20  schachfuchs: Pretty easy, but pretty ;-)
Mar-11-20  RandomVisitor: After 4...c6 strong is 5.0-0

click for larger view


<48/70 23:48 +0.81 5.0-0 exd4 6.Qxd4> Ngf6 7.e5 dxe5 8.Nxe5 Bc5 9.Bxf7+ Ke7 10.Qc3 Nxe5 11.Qxe5+ Kxf7 12.Qxc5 Re8 13.Nc3 Qe7 14.Qxe7+ Rxe7 15.Be3 Bf5 16.Rac1 h6 17.h3 b6 18.Rfd1 Rae8 19.Kh2 Rd7 20.Rxd7+ Bxd7 21.b3 Bf5 22.g4 Bg6 23.Kg2 Re7 24.Bf4 b5 25.b4 h5 26.f3 hxg4 27.hxg4 Nd5 28.Nxd5 cxd5 29.Kf2 Rd7 30.Be3 d4 31.Bf4 Kf6 32.c3 Bf7 33.cxd4 Rxd4 34.Be3 Rxb4 35.Rc6+ Ke7

Mar-11-20  zb2cr: Actually pretty straightforward for a Wednesday. 31. ... Qxf1+; 32. Kxf1, Ra1+.

Now, if White plays 33. Qc1, Rxc1+; 34. Bxc1, b2; 35. Bxb2, Bxb2 with a huge edge in material for Black.

If 33. Bc1, b2! Now White has nothing better than 34. g4, Rxc1+; 35. Kg2, Rxc5 and Black has an even more crushing material edge.

Obviously 33. Ne1??, Raxe1# is a gross blunder for White.

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