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Henry Bird vs James Mason
Bird - Mason (1875/76), New York USA, rd 11, Dec-31
Four Knights Game: Spanish. Classical Variation (C48)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Oct-16-20  offramp: An odd game. It's funny that I can remember lots of chess games played on New Years Eve, including a few World Championship games.

The match rules said, <The time of sitting shall be from 3 o'clock until 7 P.M., and from 8 o'clock until 12 P.M. each day...>

By my reckoning, White thereby played 98.Qd8# at the exact moment the New Year's Eve Ball fell at Times Square, just a block away from where these yutzes were playing. Mason's guts must've been screeching for a pint!

The game is a slow-burner, more like an Advent candle than a Hogmanay firework.

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Then, 53 moves later:

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White had missed a few chances to really speed things up with a well-timed ♙g4!, with the idea of ...hxg4, h5, gxh5, Qh1! intending either Qh4+ or Qxh5. He could have done it at e.g. move 56.

So now, at move 83, with the hands on the clock at ten to midnight, the game opens up.

10 moves later we are here:

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Here Black can draw with 93...Rd1+! Mason played 93...Qb4?
94.e6 Rg7
95.Qd6+ Ke8
96.Qb8+ Ke7
97.Qc7+ Kf8

Happy New Year, everybody!

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