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Siegbert Tarrasch vs Joseph Henry Blackburne
Manchester (1890), Manchester ENG, rd 16, Sep-04
Spanish Game: Steinitz Defense (C62)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Sep-20-04  Knight13: As black, I would resign after 49. e5.
Jan-22-10  wordfunph:

click for larger view

the critical part of the game...Tarrasch splendidly pushed 20.Nh6 and black crumbled 30 moves later.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: 19...Kh8 is hardly understandable mistake. The move itself suggests that Blackburne saw quite trivial threat 20.Nh6+ and 21.Qxe6 but he reacted by move which allowed the very same shot with immediate win of pure exchange. After 19...Qd7 black's position is grim anyway but there seems to be nothing immediately decisive for white.

Of course, 15...f6 was positionally awful move which deserved to be punished and Tarrasch did not miss his chance to do it.

Jan-26-10  percyblakeney: Blackburne had rather good stats against Tarrasch, it was first when Blackburne was 63 and 72 years old Tarrasch managed to go from 3-4 to 5-4 in wins.
Dec-08-11  zydeco: <honza cervenka> Although I'm not sure black had any good alternatives to 15...f6. If 15...Bxf6, white exchanges, triples up on the d-file, and wins the pawn with Nc4 or Nd6.

9...Ne8 has to be a mistake, allowing Nd5. Probably black should play ....7yNxd4 immediately.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: <zydeco:> <<honza cervenka> Although I'm not sure black had any good alternatives to 15...f6. If 15...Bxf6, white exchanges, triples up on the d-file, and wins the pawn with Nc4 or Nd6.>

I don't think it is so easy. For example, 15...Bf6 16.Bxf6 (is that your suggestion?) 16...Nxf6 17.f3 (to protect Pe4) 17...Rad8 and now if white tries to triple his major pieces on d-file by 18.Rd2, then black plays simply d6-d5 and the game is equal. Well, instead of 18.Rd2 white can try 18.Qd4 and anyway I would be more afraid of 16.Ba3 instead of 16.Bxf6. No doubt, white had a better game already before 15...f6 but I still think that the played move made things much worse for black.

Feb-09-12  drukenknight: Hello Honza, et. al. Nice analysis above, you guys work hard. I want to ask, is 23...Bb6+ the best chance for black here? I am working with chesslab pc and I get something like:

24. Kg2 Nc7
25. e5 d5
26. cxd5 cxd5
27. exf6 gxf6

what do you think? Is it saveable?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Hello, <drukenknight>, I think that after 23...Bb6+ 24.Kg2 Nc7 white can play also 25.Ba3 practically forcing 25...c5 or return of Knight 25...Ne8. White has extra exchange and so he has great advantage with good winning chances. In fact, I think that white should win such a position by force even against best defense of black but in practical game anything can happen and so it is net necessary to be hurry with resignation.
Feb-10-12  drukenknight: thanks I will look at 25 Ba3 and see where it leads; working on stuff like this is actually useful to me for theory to see if such games can really be saved or absolutely lost. I know you know that; but others may think I am just prolonging the agnony..

Hey! Did you like the follow up discussion of Fischer/Spassky the alekhine def and the Q/R ending? I think you guys made contribution to endgame theory there.

Feb-11-12  drukenknight: with Honza's suggestion my line starts to look like this:

25. Ba3 Ne6
26. Bxd6 Bd4
27. c5 Bxc5
28. Bxc5 Rxd1
29. Rxd1 Nxc5
30. b4 Nxe4

but of course Honza can change whites moves. The pc I am using is chesslab so anyone can play this at home.

Feb-11-12  drukenknight: actually this line starting to look hopeless for black as anyone who can push a button will see. I may have to try again... (sigh)
Feb-11-12  drukenknight: I guess 23...d5 is my last shot at this and I'm not real thrilled...
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: <drukenknight> 23...d5 24.exd5 is definitely in white's favour. Opening of lines for white Rooks is not a good idea. Maybe 23...g6 with idea Ng7 and eventually Nf5 (after e4-e5) was the most stubborn defense here.
Jul-10-16  Sally Simpson: "As black, I would resign after 49. e5. "

This game was adjourned and continued after the last round had been played. Even if Tarrasch had lost this game he would still win the tournament.

Game Collection: Manchester 1890

It was suggested to Tarrasch that even though he was in a winning position the done thing would be to declare the game a draw.

Tarrasch stated coming to England and not beating Blackburne would be like going to Rome and not seeing the Pope.

(related by Tarrasch in his 300 games.)

Maybe Blackburne was expecting a draw offer. The tournament was over, Tarrasch has won it, let's get on with the prize giving and go home.

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