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Siegbert Tarrasch vs Alexander Alekhine
Baden-Baden (1925), Baden-Baden GER, rd 3, Apr-19
Italian Game: Classical. Tarrasch Variation (C53)  ·  0-1



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Given 23 times; par: 39 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Jan-05-04  nikt: 19 Nf3! 22 Bh3! 27 Ng4! 3 thunderbolts and quick kill like in computergame :-)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Better seems to be 22.Qd2 instead of 22.Bd3. 23.gxh3 was a suicide, although after 23.Be2 black has clear advantage. The finish is not difficult but quite pretty tactics.
Jul-04-04  dac1990: According to Alekhine, the game ended here, unlike Tarrasch vs Alekhine, 1925 which shows it played one move afterward.
Jul-04-04  dac1990: I'll stop with the kibitzing, 'cause I just noticed (for the first time!) that there's a "suggest your correction" link right below the typing box.

Now, I quote: "D'oh!"

Jul-07-04  Bucky Katt: The "suggest your correction" link is currently down. So, in 500 Master Games of Chess the game score is given as 29.Bh3 Rh4 30. Resigns. Dac 1990 is correct. In Alekhine's My Best Games of Chess 1908-1937 the game is given as above.
Jul-07-04  Calli: The Tournament book also gives 38...Rxg4 as the last move.
Jul-20-05  Eric6312: in Max Euwe's book "The Middlegame" the author states that Alekhine said that 11...Qd8 was the best move of the whole game.
Aug-11-06  fevered cheek: 24.Rxe8?? might have been 24.Bf1 c4 25.Nd4 Qxd5 26.Nf5

click for larger view

position after 23...Qxf3

Apr-12-07  Ulhumbrus: 14...exd4 extracts an instructive concession from White. Either White lets his central phalanx go by 15 Nxd4 or else he maintains his central phalanx by 15 cxd4 but then invites the fork 15...Nb4 in reply.
Apr-22-08  Ulhumbrus: It is not obvious that 8 a4 will make the move ...exd4 more effective for Black, by giving up pawn control of b4.

The reason is that if White uses the c3 pawn to replace the one on d4 in reply to ..exd4, the point b4 is then left without pawn protection.

The move a4 in fact gives the c3 pawn a second task and so overloads the c3 pawn. The c3 pawn cannot both provide the point b4 with pawn cover and replace the d4 pawn which it defends.

The result ia that the move 14...exd4 extracts an instructive concession from White. Either White lets his central phalanx go by 15 Nxd4 or else he maintains his central phalanx by 15 cxd4 but then invites the fork 15...Nb4 in reply.

Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: There was little point to 10 Bg5 as after 10..h6 maintaining the pin with 11 Bh4 would not have been advisable as Black could have followed up with ..Kh8, ..Rg8 and ..g5. The quote from the tournament book (presumably attributed mostly to Alekhine) after 11..Qd8!:

"The most difficult move in the game: Black forces the bishop on c4, which is very unpleasant for him, to define its position before White has finished his development; in addition to this now the move Nbd2 is hampered, on which at the present moment could have followed 12..Nxe4 (or 12..exd followed by ..d5); finally at the same time it prepares to activate the king's rook on the e-file."

17 f4..Ng6 18 e5..Nh5 would have been very bad for White. Alekhine called 21 exd? the losing move recommending 21 e5..Bf5 22 Qd2..Qxd2 23 Rxd2..Ne4 24 Rdd1..Rad8 with Black having the advantage of the two bishops. Better would have been 22 Qd2..Qxa4 23 Nc1..Bc2 24 Rxe8+..Rxe8 25 Re1..Ne4 26 Qf4..c4 27 Nd4..Bxd4 26 cxd..Qb4 though Alekhine thought that Black had a winning advantage here.

Apr-04-15  Smite: No GOTD for this? Taking out the Tarrasch
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: No cigar: Schlechter vs Tarrasch, 1900
May-06-15  Smite: Thanks <MissScarlett>
Jan-26-20  Gaito: Eric6312. Alekhine did not say that 11....Qd8 was the "best" move, but the "most difficult move" of the whole game. But it might as well have been the "best" move, according to the plan that Alekhine had in mind.
Jan-26-20  Gaito: fevered cheek. In his book "My Best games of Chess, 1924-1937, this is game 5, Alekhine wrote that on 24.Bf1 he was intent on exchanging rooks right away, whereby White would lose his passed pawn.
Jan-26-20  Gaito: 21.exd5? is given by Alekhine as White's decisive mistake, though he only attaches one question mark to that move. He wrote that white's best chance was 21.e5 Bf5 22.Qd2 Qxd2 23.Rxd2 Ne4 24.R2d1 (not 24.Rxd5?? Be6) Rad8. Alekhine wrote that Black would stand better on account of his two bishops.
Apr-08-20  Ulhumbrus: The move 11...Qd8!! by threatening 12...Nxe4 13 Bxe4 d5 (as Alekhine may have indicated) presents White with a problem which is typical of many an opening: Whereas Black can be satisfied with equality White will want more and White can go wrong if he tries too hard for more.

This suggests that at some point Tarrasch may have gone too far trying to extract more than a minimal advantage from the position.

This suggests the question at which point Tarrasch does this.

One example of an answer is, at move 12 when after 12 Bd3 Re8 13 Nbd2 Ba7 14 Qc2 allows Black to give White an unwelcome choice by 14...exd4.

One alternative to 12 Bd3 is 12 Bb3 so that after 12...exd4 13 cxd4 d5 will not attack White's bishop and so allows 14 e5 in reply eg 14...Ne4 15 Nc3

Apr-12-20  jerseybob: <Eric6312: in Max Euwe's book "The Middlegame" the author states that Alekhine said that 11...Qd8 was the best move of the whole game.> There were several nice retreats by black in this game: 11..Qd8 as you note, but also 4..Bb6, kinda like Lasker's Evans gambit line, and later on 12..Ba7 to not be bothered by Nc4.
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: Tarrasch seems to want q-side play after 8. a4, so 9. b4 seems a more logical move - 9. h3 makes the h-pawn a target, as seen by Alekhine's 22...Bh3.

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