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David Janowski vs Samuel Reshevsky
"I Beat a Great Master!" (game of the day Dec-09-2007)
New York (1922), New York, NY USA, rd 2, Oct-08
Queen's Gambit Declined: Barmen Variation (D37)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Apr-02-05  vonKrolock: According to "David Janowsky", by Voronkov and Plissetsky, this Game was played in October 8th 1922, so according to the official Reshevsky's birthday, he was 10-Years-old then
May-22-05  SnoopDogg: Actually Reshevsky is thought or should I say to be known that he is older than what his birth certificate says. But because of his small size he got away with it.

But I heard Reshevsky was giving simuls at the age of 6.

May-22-05  RookFile: 9.... Nb6 is no good. Tarrasch said
a knight on b6 is always misplaced.
9....b5 and Bb7 seems more logical.

You get the feeling that Janowski was
winning, but Reshevsky was showing the
defensive tenacity that marked his
whole career.

Aug-07-06  Marmot PFL: They were the oldest and youngest players in the tournament, ages 52 and 10. Many people thought it was child abuse to have a 10 yr old play in such a tough event.
Aug-02-07  sneaky pete: 57.g7 .. apparently still draws.

<Reshevsky On Chess> has some curious notes. 54... Kg8 is supposed to maintain some winning chanches, as after 54... Rxf6+ 55.gxf6+ Kg8 56.d7 Qd2 57.g7! .. black cannot win because of the threat f7+ etc. Yet after 54... Kg8 55.d7 Rxf6+ 56.gxf6+ .. gets a question mark, then after 56... Qd2 the (what appears to be) losing move 57.Rh1 .. (instead of 57.g7 ..) passes without comment.

Dec-09-07  dumbgai: Where did Janowski go wrong? I could have sworn White was winning around move 40 or so.
Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: Janowski butchered this. After 48. Qxf4, what can black do? After 48...Rf8 49. Qe4 Qb3+ 50. Kg4, white can play 51. Rf1 or Rh1 and take over the seventh rank.

Dec-09-07  Dilbertarian: After 48. Qxf4, Black could have replied Qb3+ and tried to obtain either perpetual check, or a position similar to what actually followed, if the white king at one time or another goes to f3.
Dec-09-07  zev22407: IN Fred Reinfeld's book 38)N-g5+ wins the game 38)..h6xg5 39)Rxg5 R-g7 40)Q-g3! Q-f7 41)R-h5+ K-g8 42)R-h6 Nxe5 43)f4xe5! RxQ 44)RxR+ and white wins.
Dec-09-07  zev22407: Reinfeld sugestd 45)QxR! leading to a perpetual check.
Dec-09-07  newzild: Hey Zev22407, doesn't 45.QxR lose to 45...Rh8?
Yeah, black was getting hammered up till 37.d6, when the open diagonal gave black counterplay. Pretty awesome for a youngster to take out an old pro like Janowski like that...
Dec-09-07  Tacticstudent: I think Janowski should have resigned after 53... Rf8., but I believe it was too much for him to be defeated by a ten-year old boy. Typical chessplayer pride.
Dec-09-07  Calli: Picture from the tournament:
Dec-09-07  Gambit All: <For one thing you can skip the first 40 moves> While the "crowd pleasing" middle game type combinations and razor's edge positions occur after move 40, some intriguing positional moves occur early. Black's 7th move - pushing the a-pawn to facilitate Queen side expansion - is a deviation from the normal Queen's Gambit Declined opening. It is very rare for children to break away from well known piece combinations to consider unusual pawn moves. It shows a chess mind that is analyzing over the whole board.

Also in moves 19 and 35 Janowski twice ultimately loses tempi doubling his rooks first on the B and then on the G file. Ultimately the attack formations prove to be mirages as he is unable to win material or penetrate down the files. In Andrew Soltis's "The Art Of Defense in Chess" he cites a 1909 Jaowski-Lasker Championship game where Janowski doubles Rooks on the g file and after Lasker responds g6! "all of a sudden it seems that White's Rooks are sitting uselessly on a blocked file and that his KB could do much better service elsewhere." In games where an opponent was proving hard to attack Janowski seems to have had an achilles'heel for growing impatient, maybe running out of ideas, and doubling his rooks in attack formations that prove to be illusions.

Dec-09-07  dabearsrock1010: why not 33. d6 looks winning for white to me, any other opinions?
Dec-09-07  RookFile: Well, the computer says, take your pick: 33. Nh4, Janovski's 33. Rg2+, 33. c4, or d6 are all winning, in this order, with values raging from +2.21 to +1.50.
Dec-10-07  kevin86: What a rally by Reshevsky! It looked like the rooks would batter their way into his position,but he was able to stave them off. Mr.Janowski held off a bit too long,IMHO,after he lost the queen.
Dec-10-07  patzer2: As an 11-year-old prodigy, Reshevsky defends well against the positional sacrifice 40. Ng5!? by giving the piece back with good practical chances after 41...Ng6!
Apr-19-09  vonKrolock: Ten years old - not eleven (not even with the Julian calendar's d├ęcalage he would be 11) By the way, read Edward Winter's "Chess Notes" number 6083 April 2009 for more interesting material on this game
May-04-10  wrap99: I believe it was after this game that Janowski made a comment like, "This boy knows no more about chess than I do of rope dancing."

This is to say, Janowski was unhappy at losing to Reshesky.

I reflect that I actually saw Reshevsky in person at Lone Pine in 1978 (or 77). I considered speaking to him but he looked very unamenable to that sort of invasion of privacy.

Apr-19-11  SeanBurdine: My sourcebook for the game says Janowski blew his last chance to draw on move 56. He played 56 NPxR?? losing. The correct line is 56 KPxR!! Q-Q7 57 P-B7 ch K-N2 58 R-KR1! forcing a perpetual check [58... QxQP?? loses to 59 R-R7 ch KxP 60 P-B8(N) ch!]
Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: Reshevsky said it was one of the happiest days of his life. He jumped up and down in the taxi. Then he ran up the stairs to his parents' hotel room. After telling his parents the good news he sang quite loudly.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: Believe it or not, Janowski's dismissive statement was not the first time chess and rope-dancing were mentioned in the same sentence. Here is an advertisement for an exhibition of The Turk (Automaton), from the New York Evening Post of July 3, 1826:


Maelzel's Exhibition of the Automaton Chess Player, Trumpeter, and Rope Dancers, will commence every day at 12:00 AM and at 8:00 PM at the National Hotel, 112 Broadway; admittance 50 cents, children under 12 years, half price.">

Jul-24-12  Petrosianic: <After telling his parents the good news he sang quite loudly.>

In later years, Sammy hardly ever did that after a win. Except when he beat Fischer.

Jan-08-13  Caissanist: According to Edward Lasker, in <Chess Secrets I Learned from the Masters>, Janowski showed the onlookers how he could have won if he had played Ng5+ on move 38 (instead of move 40). If black accepts the sacrifice white plays Rxg5, followed by Qg3 and Rh5+.
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