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Gioachino Greco vs NN
Unknown (1620), unknown
King's Gambit: Accepted. Bishop's Gambit Greco Variation (C33)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
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Jan-04-10  cyclon: <Once:> Thank you for your view. If I concentrate enough, I can come up with something in this kind of openings although they are uneasy for me, but you delineated things in pretty understandable form. I don`t feel "at home" in gambit-kind of openings. For me it`s like jumping into train that`s in motion. Tempo is too fast from the beginning. I used to like system-kind of openings where I can more (not wholly) determine the tempo in the early phase of the game, while at the same time reserving certain `sensitivity` for even sudden changes in the games `internal`-(kind of musical-, you see...) speed when transferred into middle-game. There [unless opponent forces earlier] things can go wild, but with more `firm` sense of hmm..,intuition -for example, because I kind of "sensed" the beginning "note"/character/tempo/speed/phase making possible better evaluation about games "NATURE" in later phases. This was an ideal. So, opening and what emerges of it HAD to be kind of "adjusted" according to my "temper". This is just my subjective approach, that`s all. It`s not from the book as such.
Jan-04-10  TheaN: Monday 4 January 2010


Target: 0:40;000
Taken: WAY too long. Near 5 minutes.

Material: Black up, ♙

Candidates: <[Bxf7†]>....

Okay. I somehow think this is a bit too much for Monday. What I got is the extremely easy to stop:

<7.Bxf7†> I got this way within my Monday limit. But then, I got amazed by the difficulty that follows. Obviously:

<7....Kxf7 8.Ne5† > is NOT what Black should reply. But if he moves the King out the way:

<7....Kd8> the danger is less apparent. If Black decides to go to d8, I guess White has the combination:

<8.h3 Qg3 9.Bd2> with the threat of Be1 trapping the Queen, Black has another try.

<9....Bxd4 10.Be1 Qxe1† 11.Qxe1 Bxb2 > and I'd say Black has some material back for the Queen. But in fact, he can improve on that even, by keeping the King in range of f7:

<7....Kf8 8.h3 Qg3 9.Bd2 Kxf7 10.Be1 Qg6 (Qxe1† ) 11.Ne5† > netting White a Queen for two pieces. I think that if THIS is it it is way too far fetched for Monday. Time to check.

Jan-04-10  TheaN: 1/1

"Easy to stop"? Make that "easy to spot" :). I'm still right though. The fact that Greco got 7....Kxf7 8.Ne5† handed to him on a plate doesn't mean it qualifies as a Monday puzzle. The trap is AT LEAST Tuesday. Bizarre choice.

Jan-04-10  Patriot: <johnlspouge> Hi John...No problem! It's less efficient to continue to analyze in an already won position OTB, which you already know. That's a thought process I like to practice in puzzles as well for consistency.

About getting your daughter ready for that's a serious matter! Happy New Year and I wish you the best! :-)

Jan-04-10  VincentL: Actually.... I think black can save the queen.

7. Nf7+ Kf8 8. h3 Qg3 9. Nc3 Bxd4 !

Now after 10. Ne2 Qf2 mate.

If 10. Nxd4 Kxf7 and the black queen retreats to a safe haven next move.

If 10. Qxd4 we need to be more careful.

Not 10....Kxf7 11. Ne2 Qg6 12. Ne5+, but 10.....Nc6. If the queen does not move to a square where it defends f7, then 11....Kxf7 and 12.....Qg6. White cannot play 13. Ne5+ since the black knight on c6 is now defending e5.

If white tries 11. Qc4 then 11.... b5. If now 12. Qxb5 Kxf7 and the black queen retreats to safety next move. If 12. Nxb5 Nh6, followed by Nxf7 and a safe queen retreat. If 12. Qb3 b4 ! 13. Ne2 Ba6

If white plays Qd5 at any time then Nf6.

Maybe white can win the queen starting with 9. Bd2 instead of Nc3. I haven't got time to analyse it through now - I'll try to look at it later.

Jan-04-10  VincentL: The above does not work against 9. Bd2, since after 9.....Bxd4 10. Be1 and 10.... Qf2 is no longer mate.
Jan-04-10  onthegate: Another possible line:
7 Bxf7+ Kf8
8 h3 Qg3
9 Bd2 Nf6
10 Be1 Nxe4
11 Bxg3 Nxg3+
12 Kg1 Nxh1
13 Bb3 Ng3
achieving material parity but white has superior development.
Jan-04-10  YetAnotherAmateur: <kingfu: Has NN ever won a game?>

Not only has he won games, he's beaten Alekhine at least twice, and Lasker at least once:

Alekhine vs NN, 1925
Alekhine vs NN, 1925
Lasker vs NN, 1908

Jan-04-10  gropek: If the Bishop captures the f7 pawn, the king cant take it, or in the next move the whites will fork the king and queen with the knight by moving it to e5.
Jan-04-10  VincentL: <YetAnotherAmateur>According to the CG database, NN has won 26 games during a 512 year stint - and is still going strong today. His first win was in 1790 against Philidor.

One of NN's opponents also appears to have the elixir of eternal life. Jonathan Wilson was playing in 1795 (see the database) and is apparently still active today.

Jan-04-10  benjinathan: This position must be one of those I see the old woman you seee the young woman picture things: when I see the position I see the hanging queen; others see the knight fork.
Jan-04-10  Cibator: <lekoo>: Greco is believed to have made up most of the games given in his manuscripts.
Jan-04-10  SufferingBruin: <Cibator: Greco is believed to have made up most of the games given in his manuscripts.>

Going over his CG page is interesting. Most of the games are over before move 20 with one lasting 32 moves and a marathon game (for him) of 50 moves. That's where CG member Gypsy had what I thought was an interesting post. Gypsy found some comments from Jeremy Silman who spent some time analyzing Greco's games.

<˜There are many games which show Greco toying with his hopelessly over-matched opponents, and one gains the impression that he was a master of tactics and of open games, and that he was so far beyond other players of his time that it was, in effect, a case of a grandmaster versus players rated between 1000 and 1800. Once in a while, Greco would face someone who could fight back, which allows us to see Greco's positional skills. It is possible that some, or even all, of the games were fabricated, but even if they were inventions they still show a chess understanding centuries ahead of his time.>

Imagine being a GM with no one else to play. He probably did make some stuff up, if for no other reason than to entertain himself. I'm not knocking him for it.

Jan-04-10  WhiteRook48: 7 Bxf7+ i mean so easy
Jan-04-10  goodevans: <onthegate: Another possible line: 7 Bxf7+ Kf8
8 h3 Qg3
9 Bd2 Nf6
10 Be1 Nxe4
11 Bxg3 Nxg3+
12 Kg1 Nxh1
13 Bb3 Ng3
achieving material parity but white has superior development.>

Is 10 Nc3 an improvement? As far as I can see the Q isn't going anywhere fast so no need to hurry.

What I really like about today's puzzle is that the first move serves well as a Monday puzzle but there's plenty of analysis to be done if black declines the sac.

Jan-04-10  I Like Fish: hello....
my seventh move is...
knight to ee five...
Jan-04-10  VincentL: <onthegate>In your line white can play 11. Kg1. Then after 11....Kxf7 12. Bxg3 Nxg3 13. Rh2 white has a material advantage of about 2 pawns.
Jan-04-10  randomsac: A classic tactic from Greco. I sure learned a lot from his games.
Jan-04-10  David2009: Monday's puzzle Greco vs NN, 1620 7? Greco won with 7 Bxf7+ Kxf7?? 8 Ne5+ etc.
Much better is 7...Ke7! which nearly equalises. However 8 h3! Qg3 9 Nc3! traps the Queen by 9 Ne2 (in most variations) winning Q for R+B - but there is still work to do. The main variation is 7...Ke7 8.h3 Qg3 9.Nc3 Nf6! (better than 9...Kxf7 <agb2002>) 10.Qd3! Kxf7 11.Ne2 Nh5 12.Kg1! Nc6 (or d6) 13.Nxg3 Nxg3 14.Bxf4 Nxh1 15.Kxh1 with a comfortable material advantage (Q+P for R+B).

click for larger view

(Black to play). From now on it is relatively plain sailing.

I claim no credit for discovering these White moves: having lost as White against Crafty using the on-line link below, I tried playing with colours reversed, leading to the above White moves.

On-line link to the puzzle position: You are white, drag and drop the move you want to make. Good luck!

Jan-04-10  DarthStapler: Got it easily
Jan-04-10  jia: Took 1-2 secs haha! Easiest one i've tried and the first one when I actually smiled simply noticing at the position.
Jan-04-10  Hevelius: That was some kind of "naive", primitive, yet charming Chess. In my humble opinion, a fancy and simple Monday puzzle.
Jan-04-10  Winston Smith: Finally, a "very easy" puzzle that was actually very easy for me, I usually come to this site to get stumped.
Jan-04-10  zb2cr: <David2009>, Thanks for the link. I played it out from the variation you gave, it took over 50 moves to reach mate but was mostly straightforward.
Jan-29-10  Marmot PFL: why resign? the game is young
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