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Juan Corzo vs Jose Raul Capablanca
Capablanca - Corzo (1901), Havana CUB, rd 6, Nov-29
Vienna Game: Vienna Gambit. Hamppe-Allgaier-Thorold Gambit (C25)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
Mar-27-04  ArturoRivera: I think that the viena game must be discarded from a serious opening player, but in this game, was not exactly the viena game but a transposition of the kings gambit accepted, very well played young capablanca, very well!
Aug-27-05  LeSwamp: A) 3.f4?! This move appears dubious here. Corzo probably thinks Capablanca weak on tactics and whishes to bring in a wild game.

B) 5.h4!?. 5.h3 appears less risky.

C) 6.Ng5? This is a mistake. Corzo had to play 6.Ng1! Nf6 7.d3 Black advantage.

D) 10.Be2?! f3! Black winning advantage or close to that! Corzo had to play 10.Kf2! Black clear advantage.

E) 12.0-0?? Suicidal! The only move was 12.dxc6 fxe2 (12...Nf6 13.Qd3 or 13.Bf4 Black clear advantage) 13.Qd3! bxc6 Black clear advantage and maybe a winning one.

F) 14...Ke7? Having played the opening well, now Capablanca goes wrong. 14...Kg7! 15.Rxf6 Kxf6! 16.Qf3+ Bf5 (only move) 17.dxc6 Qe1+! 18.Kg2 Rg8+ (only move) Black winning.

G) 16...Rg8+? Anothe mistake. Capablaca was still winning after the previous one, though. 16...Bg7! 17.Qh2 (17.Rg6 Bxd4+ (only move) 18.Be3 (only move) Bxe3+ 19.Qxe3 Qxh5 20.Qg3 Nd4! ) Qxf6! 18.dxc6 Rg8!

H) 17...Rxg6+? Last mistake. Now Corzo has a perpetual check! Black still had a clear advantage after 17...Nxd4! 18.Qf2 Rxg6+! 19.Bxg6 (only move) Qg4+! 20.Kf1 (only move) Bg7! 21.Be4! Bf5! 22.Qf4! Qh3+! 23.Bg2 (only move) Qh5! 24.Qg3! Bg4! Black clear advantage.

Sep-16-05  Averageguy: I am writing a notebook on my favourite games with 20 moves or less (What I consider a miniature) Does anyone reckon that this game is worthy of place in that notebook?
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheAlchemist: If they are your favorites, they are worthy.
Oct-05-08  vikinx: Incredible position at the end!
Premium Chessgames Member
  senojes: Up to 8...d5 this game followed W.F. Eno v S. Lloyd (the problem composer), New York, 1894, when Eno played 9. Bxf4 and won. So both players were presumably following current opening theory. Corzo's 9. exd5 may be his own improvement sprung on the 13 year-old Capablanca. If so, either Capablanca worked out the best moves by natural talent, or he knew more opening theory than he let on, or this variation of the Hamppe-Allgaier gambit had recently being played in Cuba, and Capablanca was aware of it.

After 10. Be2 Corzo is in trouble [-1.32]. Houdini recommends 10. Kf2 [-0.99] which Corzo played in game 8 and lost.

Houdini agrees with the comments above that Capablanca was on top until his 14... Ke7. He apparently overlooked Corzo's 15. Qe2+ Kd8 16. Rxf6! and if 16... Qxf6 17. Qe8#. But 14... Kg7 would have won, e.g. 15. dxc6 Rg8 16. cxb7 Kh8+ and mate in 6. Or 15. Bf3 Rg8 16. dxc6 Kh7+ 17. Bg2 Rxg2+ 18. Kxg2 Bh3+ 19. Kf3 Bg4+ 20. Ke3 Bxd1 winning White's Q with mate not far away [#12].

By 17. ... Rxg6+ Capablanca heads for a draw by perpetual check. But after 17... Nxd4 he was still ahead [-0.56]. Maybe he was rattled after overlooking Corzo's 16. Rxf6? Also if he lost this game Corzo would have 3 wins to Capablanca's 0 and Corzo would need only one more win to take the first to 4 wins match. So Capablanca may have wisely decided to force a draw and live to fight another day.

As indicated above this game has it's sequel in game 8 where Corzo attempted an improvement (10. Kf2), but Capablanca learned of Corzo's intentions and prepared a stunning refutation, which won.

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