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Geza Maroczy vs Rudolf Spielmann
Bad Sliac (1932), Sliac CSR, rd 1, Jun-??
French Defense: Exchange Variation (C01)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Apr-03-08  Ulhumbrus: With 10 b4 Maroczy begins a Queen side pawn storm, and perhaps Spielmann is advised to begin his own King side pawn storm in reply by 10...g5
Premium Chessgames Member
  Honza Cervenka: Spielmann's attack was incorrect but Maroczy had to be quite precise in defense. And he was. 14...Nxf3+ would have been better.
Premium Chessgames Member
  DanQuigley: Spielmann wrote about this game in his book on the tournament (my translation from German).

6...Nge7 With this structure, Alekhine, Nimzowitsch and also I, but against weaker masters, have achieved sparing successes. Maroczy's unabated continuation, however, calls into question the value of the whole system.

11.Nb3! Maroczy does not wait, but instead sets a fast pace.

16...Nxg2 Desperation. White with Bxh4 and later Nc5 threatened to obtain a strong game.

21...g5? Better but also insufficient was 21...Bxf4.


28.Rxf3! Short and sweet.


41.Be5 Black resigned. Maroczy has once again proven to be a consummate master of the art of defense.

Premium Chessgames Member
  DanQuigley: Here are my thoughts on the game.

7...Bg4?! I have no problem with Black's sixth move, but this looks a bit dubious to me. What comes of pinning the f3 Knight and giving White's Bishop on d3 free reign? I think 7...Bf5, though less popular for Black, gives White problems in terms of demonstrating any advantage. White's key attacker is countered.

10.b4 White signals he is playing for the win. This is so aggressive. I imagine Black figured he was going to see 10.h3 instead, when Black can belatedly try to equalize with 10...Bf5. White could then try the surprising 11.Bf1! but this last is not a move that would occur to a 1932 player.

10...Ng6 Vacating the e7 square so the c6-Knight has a retreat square, believe it or not. No wonder Spielmann feels something went wrong with his defense already.

11.Nb3! Spielmann must have been expecting 11.b5 when this strong positional move came as an unpleasant surprise. White improves his position and holds the threat of b5 in reserve.

11...Rde8?! Black would be well advised to play 11...Nh4 here instead in order to exchange two minor pieces on f3 and blunt White's attack. Did Spielmann perhaps consider his position as Black here at least equal? It's not.

12...Nh4 Better late than never.

14...Ne7? A serious mistake from Black. 14...Nxf3+ is all but forced. After 15.Qxf3 g6! Black has excellent drawing chances.

15.Be2 White's decision to keep the two Bishops is going to win him the game, particularly since Black's Knight is so out of play on h4. Another elegant plan for White was 15.Bg4 f5 16.Bh3 (intending g3 and a subsequent fianchetto of the light-squared Bishop).

16.Bg5 Pointing out how misplaced Black's Knights are. There is no way White will allow one of his Bishops to be exchanged for a Knight now.

16...Nxg2 Spielmann might consider this move to be desperation in hindsight. However, at the time I imagine he felt he had some good compensation for the piece sacrifice. All of Black's pieces can get into the action quickly on the Kingside and White has a Rook on a1 and Knight on b3 out of play. It's not a bad try by Black.

19.Kh1 And not 19.Kf1?? Qh3+ 20.Kg2 Qg2#

19...h5!? Wow! That's far sighted. Black is speculating on a Kingside pawn storm.

21.f4! Maroczy shows some supreme defensive skills. He not only tries to limit the scope of Black's attacking pieces, he makes room to better coordinate his defense.

22.Qb1 It could not have been an easy decision by White to move the Queen away from the Kingside, but the retreat is temporary. If Black moves his Queen, say to g4, White's Queen obtains a nice defensive home on d3.

23.Qd3 23.Nc5 was even stronger, but perfect accuracy is no longer required. White has several consolidating paths to victory. The rest is a good show of winning conversion technique by White.

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