Author Archives: Martin Stahl

2017 MCA BOD Election Results

Election results are in. Here are the BOD representatives for each region, effective September 1st, 2017 until August 31st 2019.


Region I:

  • Ken West
  • Bob Howe
  • Thomas Rehmeier

Region II:

  • Ken Jones
  • Randy Merrell
  • Bruce Cantwell

Region III:

  • Martin Stahl
  • Nick Beatty
  • Jonathan Cannon

Full election details will be posted under Governance Reports in the near future.

2017 Mid-America Open — Hunter Hunted

Below is a game and a couple of game snippets presented by NM Ron Luther from the 2017 Mid-America Open in Saint Louis


Round 1: NM Ron Luther vs GM Elshan Moradiabadi

[ctpgn layout=”left” id=”LutherMoradiabadi032417″]
[Event “Mid America Open”]
[Site “?”]
[Date “2017.03.24”]
[Round “1”]
[White “LM Ron Luther”]
[Black “GM Elshan Moradiabadi”]
[Result “1-0”]
[WhiteElo “2205”]
[BlackElo “2633”]
[ECO “B26”]
[Annotator “Ron Luther”]
[PlyCount “79”]

1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 e6 3. g3 Nc6 4. Bg2 g6 5. d3 Bg7 6. Be3 d6 7. Qd2 Nd4 8. Nge2 Ne7 9. O-O Rb8 10. Nd1 Nxe2+ 11. Qxe2 O-O 12. Qd2 Re8?! {This plan to save the dark-squared Bishop, wastes several moves, and as will be seen later, he has to exchange it anyway later.} ( 12. … Nc6 ) 13. Bh6 Bh8 14. c3 b6 ( 14. … b5 ) 15. Ne3 Bb7 16. f4 d5 17. f5?! { [#]Fortune favors the Bold!} ( 17. Rad1 ) 17. … dxe4? ( 17. … exf5 18. Bf4 dxe4 19. Bxb8 Qxb8 20. dxe4 fxe4 {=+} ) 18. fxe6 {With mate threatened on f7, Black has no time to do other things.} 18. … fxe6 19. g4! ( 19. Ng4 {is the computers move, I like mine better.} ) 19. … Bg7 {Back again?} 20. Bxg7 Kxg7 21. Qf2 Rf8 22. Qg3 { +/-[#] Dark Squares!} 22. … Qd7 23. dxe4 ( 23. g5! {Looks even stronger} ) 23. … Nc6 24. g5! {This further controls the dark squares and sets up some mating nets in the future.} 24. … Rbd8 25. Qh4?! ( 25. Ng4! ) 25. … Ne5 26. Qg3 Nd3? {[#] Was shocked by this move, feeling it was bad.} 27. Rxf8 Rxf8?! ( 27. … Kxf8 {Was the best try.} ) 28. Rd1 {Now Black is in serious trouble.} 28. … Ba6 29. c4 Kg8 {The threat was Rxd3 and Nf5+} 30. Bf1 Bxc4 31. Nxc4 Qd4+ 32. Qe3 Qxc4 33. Qxd3 Qxa2 34. Qc3? {A mistake I correct in 2 moves. I am down to about 20 mins at this point to get to move 40} 34. … Qa4! 35. Qd3 Qa2 36. Qc2! Qa5 37. Bc4 {Having had several GMs in the past on the ropes I was determined not to let this one slip away!} 37. … Re8 38. Qb3 Kf8 39. Bxe6 {While this wins….Qf3+ is faster.} 39. … c4 40. Qf3+ 1-0


Round 2: FM Tansel Turgut vs NM Ron Luther

[ctpgn layout=”left” id=”TurgutVsLuther032517″ fen=”1r3nk1/5pb1/p6p/p1BP2p1/2b5/2N2N1P/1P1R1PP1/6K1 b – – 0 25″]

[Event “Mid America Open”]
[Site “?”]
[Date “2017.03.25”]
[Round “2”]
[White “FM Tansel Turgut”]
[Black “LM Ron Luther”]
[Result “1/2-1/2”]
[WhiteElo “2344”]
[BlackElo “2204”]
[Annotator “Ron Luther”]
[SetUp “1”]
[PlyCount “25”]
[FEN “1r3nk1/5pb1/p6p/p1BP2p1/2b5/2N2N1P/1P1R1PP1/6K1 b – – 0 25”]

{[#] In my 2nd rd game vs FM Turgut after some rather poor opening play we
reached this position and I played…}
25. … Nd7?! {Missing the following…}
( 25. … Bxc3! 26. bxc3 Rb5 {Giving Black good winning chances. But
after…} )
26. Bd4 f6 27. Nh2 h5 28. Nf1 Bxf1 29. Kxf1 f5 30. Ne2 Rb5 31. Bxg7 Kxg7
32. h4 Kf6 33. hxg5+ Kxg5 34. Nd4 Rb6 35. g3 Kf6 36. f4 Rd6 37. Nc2 Nc5 {A
draw was agreed.} 1/2-1/2


Round 4: NM Ron Luther vs Gopal Menon

[ctpgn layout=”left” id=”LutherVsMenon032617″ fen=”8/2rk4/p7/1pR4p/8/1PPN3P/4K3/1n6 w – – 0 36″]

[Event “Mid America Open”]
[Site “?”]
[Date “2017.03.26”]
[Round “4”]
[White “LM Ron Luther”]
[Black “Gopal Menon”]
[Result “1/2-1/2”]
[WhiteElo “2204”]
[BlackElo “2346”]
[Annotator “Ron Luther”]
[SetUp “1”]
[PlyCount “5”]
[FEN “8/2rk4/p7/1pR4p/8/1PPN3P/4K3/1n6 w – – 0 36”]

{[#] Here in the 4th rd with White vs G Menon, we reached this position.
He had only seconds to find 5 more moves before the 1st time control. My
plan was to play…}
36. Ne5+! Kd6 37. Rxc7 Kxc7 38. Kd3 {However I allowed myself to be
“enertia-ed”, and swapped rooks instead, only to draw after a few more
moves.} 1/2-1/2

2017 MCA Board of Directors Election

The ballots to select board members for for 2017-2019 have been mailed out. Please keep an eye out and be sure to return your selections to the Election Commissioner, postmarked by June 26th, 2017.


Remember to only vote for board members in your region and up to three members can be selected; write-ins welcome.  Your mailing label will include the region for your address:

  • Region 1: ZIP Codes 630xx, 631xx and 633xx
  • Region 2: ZIP Codes 640xx, 641xx
  • Region 3: The remaining Zip Codes in the state


One candidate was accidentally left off the ballot for Region 3, so if you would like to vote for that candidate you can use the write-in option. Below are the registered candidates, along with a short statement, if one was provided.


Region 1

  • Bob Howe
  • Thomas Rehmeier
  • Ken West
  • Jason Clark

Region 2

  • Randy Merrell: “I have served the MCA as Election commissioner, Treasurer, Bulletin Editor, and Tournament Organizer / Director* during the years leading up to 2003. In 2003 I was promoted to Sr. Engineering Technician for Honeywell FM&T and transferred to Los Alamos National Laboratory in Los Alamos NM. Then in 2009 I retired with 30 years of service to Honeywell. I have returned to Lee’s Summit, MO and am currently serving on the Board. I am the organizer for 2017 Missouri Open in the Kansas City area. *(Assistant TD 2001 & 2003 Missouri Class, 2002 Missouri Open, 2002″
  • Ken Jones: “I have served on the Board for the last 2 years and believe we are making progress in our goal  of promoting chess throughout the state and would like to continue that mission.”

Region 3

  • Nick Beatty: “Thank you for considering me for the MCA Board. If selected, I’ll do my best to foster a positive environment for chess to thrive in the Springfield area.”
  • Martin Stahl: “Hello, I’m Martin Stahl from Joplin, MO. Over the past few years I have been running tournaments in the Joplin and Springfield areas. I look forward to continuing to promote chess in Region III and the rest of the state by continuing to serve on the MCA board. Thank you for your support.”

2017 Board of Directors Nominations

Missouri Chess Association members are invited to submit nominations for the election for the MCA Board of Directors. Nominees must be residents of the state of Missouri, 16 years or older (as of April 15th) and current MCA members.


If elected, nominees would serve a two year term, beginning on September 1, 2017. Self-nominations are welcomed and encouraged.


Board Members are expected to be current MCA members, attend board meetings (currently 4 times per year, most via Skype, but potentially in Columbia) and the general membership meeting at the Missouri Open.


The deadline for nominations is May 1, 2017. Election ballots will be mailed out by June 1 to MCA members in good standing as of May 1, 2017.


Send your nominations, along with a short bio and picture to: Ed Baur, Election Commissioner, 7138 Lindenwood, Saint Louis, MO 63109 or email them to (MCA Secretary) . Nominations must include the nominee’s name and region (or mailing address).

The Dread of Discovered Checks

by Ken Jones

One of the most powerful and most feared weapons in chess is the discovered check.  I suspect the fear comes from the helplessness one feels as the rampaging piece does its business to destroy your position.  A extreme example of this is the “windmill” series of discovered checks from this famous game:

C. Torres Repetto-Em. Lasker, Moscow 1925

White had just played 1. Bg5-f6! uncovering an attack on the Queen, which gave Black no choice:

1…Qxh5 2. Rxg7+ Kh8 3. Rxf7+ Kg8 4. Rg7+ Kh8 5. Rxb7+ Kg8 6. Rg7+ Kh8 7. Rg5+ Kh7 8. Rxh5

 and White soon converted his material advantage.  One would not have to endure very many of these situations to develop a natural aversion to the discovered check!  But, as Reti noted, in chess we value the exception rather than the rule.  In the following examples, by reacting instinctively (fearfully) to the threat of discovered check, the opportunity to show an exception was missed.

M. Adams (2751)-S. Sethuraman (2637), Gibraltar 2017

White had just captured a N on d7, expecting (due to the threat of discovered check) to pick up the now loose Be5 (and this is in fact what happened in the game.)  Later Black pointed out what both Grandmasters had missed:


The exquisite point being that while White can win the Queen, he will lose the game:

2. Rc7+ Bd7! 3. Rxc8+ Rxc8


and White cannot save his Queen and meet the threat of 4…Rc1+.

N. Vardan (2079)-M. Gomes (2302), London 2016

Black has been trying to find a way to promote the b2-pawn for over 60 moves but the lack of protection around her King has made it problematic.  She just played 1…Be5, setting up the discovered check.  White stepped out of it with the obvious 2. Kh1 and soon had to resign.  The missed opportunity was:


2. Qxe5! b1=Q 3. Qh5+!


when Black will have to acquiesce to either perpetual check or stalemate.


The final example is from one of my own games:

K. Jones (2213)-R. Haring Orton (1954), US Open 2016

After the correct 1. bxc4! Re2+ 2. Kg3?? I was unable to win the game.  Given the theme of this article, can you see what I missed?


I should’ve walked into the discovered check with 2. Kf1!!

Position after 2. Kf1!!

Black’s Bishop is doubly attacked, so that after a discovered check I can capture it with one Rook while protecting the other.  Meanwhile, the Bishop cannot move away from guarding his own Rook, so it is lost anyway.


I hope this article will encourage you to look beyond the obvious in your own games!

Ray Gatten vs Ken Jones, 10th USCCC Prelim

Game and annotations courtesy of NM Ken Jones

[ctpgn layout=”left” id=GattenVsJones1990]

[Event “10th USCCC Prelim”]
[Site “?”]
[Date “1990.??.??”]
[Round “?”]
[White “Gatten, Ray G”]
[Black “Jones, Kenneth E”]
[Result “0-1”]
[ECO “E87”]
[Annotator “Ken Jones”]
[PlyCount “56”]
[EventDate “1990.??.??”]
[EventType “corr”]
[Source “ChessBase”]
[SourceDate “1999.07.01”]

{(Although this game is over 25 years old, the opening remains topical. It
also brings back fond memories; by winning it, I finished a half a point ahead
of my opponent and advanced to my first US Correspondence Chess Championship
final.)} 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. f3 $5 {(This was originally billed as an
“Anti-Grunfeld” variation, and is still seen at the highest levels today)} Bg7
({(Black can also go down unusual paths with} 3… Nc6) ({or} 3… Nh5 {)}) 4.
e4 O-O $5 5. Nc3 d6 {(after some side-stepping we’re back to the Saemisch)} 6.
Be3 Nbd7 7. Nh3 {(First played by Nimzovitch in 1929(!!), this move intends to
support the e4 pawn with Nf2, rather than by Nge2-g3)} e5 8. d5 Nb6 $5 {(This
is an idea of Missouri IM Mike Brooks, who showed me a few of his games with
it. [Unfortunately, I didn’t write them down!] His plan was to continue with ..
.c6, …cxd5, …Bd7, and then play for …Nc4 with either …Rc8 or …Qc7.)}
9. c5 {(There is no reason to avoid the natural 9. Nf2)} dxc5 ({(Funnily
enough, Black can still achieve his aim after} 9… Nbd7 10. cxd6 cxd6 11. Nf2
Nb6 {etc., but now there is an attract option)}) 10. Bxc5 Bxh3 $1 {(Finding
this Bishop a satisfactory assignment is often problematic in the King’s
Indian but here he gets to go out a hero)} 11. Bxf8 Bxf8 12. gxh3 Nh5 {(With
White’s K-side shattered and having better development and total domination
over the dark squares, there is little doubt that Black has full compensation
for the exchange)} 13. Kd2 $2 {(Too extravagant–White is running before he is
chased.)} c6 14. Kc2 cxd5 15. Nxd5 Rc8+ 16. Kb3 $2 ({(Occasionally one sees a
game where a bold King march is good, but here White should really slink back
with} 16. Nc3 {)}) 16… Nxd5 17. Qxd5 Qb6+ 18. Qb5 Qf6 {(Eyeing f3, of course,
but really intending the powerful Rook lift)} 19. Ka4 {(“Consistency may be
overrated as a virtue.” –Joseph Heller)} Rc6 20. b4 $6 {(This only makes it
worse–not that an acceptable alternative was available)} Rb6 21. Qc4 Rxb4+ 22.
Qxb4 Bxb4 23. Kxb4 Qb6+ {(This simple check wins material)} 24. Bb5 {(Both 24.
Ka4 & 24. Qc3 are met by Qd4+, and 24. Ka3 a5 is no help either)} a6 25. a4
axb5 26. a5 Qd6+ 27. Kxb5 Nf4 28. Rhf1 Nd3 {(Black mates in 4 moves or less,
so White resigned)} 0-1[/ctpgn]

Marty Phillips vs Ken Jones, 2016 Springfield Open

Game and annotations courtesy of NM Ken Jones. Round 4 of the 2016 Springfield Open held at Missouri State University.

[ctpgn layout=”left” id=”PhillipsVsJones2016″]
[Event “Springfield Open”]
[Site “?”]
[Date “2016.10.23”]
[Round “4”]
[White “Phillips, Martin”]
[Black “Jones, Kenneth”]
[Result “0-1”]
[ECO “E81”]
[WhiteElo “1837”]
[BlackElo “2199”]
[Annotator “Ken Jones”]
[PlyCount “46”]
[EventDate “2016.??.??”]
[Source “ChessBase”]
[SourceDate “1999.07.01”]

{(One of the best things about returning to tournament play has been
reacquainting with chess friends from many years ago. Before the start of the
tournament, I got to catch up a little with Marty Phillips; as the only two
perfect scores, we met at the board in round 4.)} 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7
4. e4 d6 5. f3 O-O 6. Be3 Nbd7 {(This system surged in popularity after GM
Nunn won some nice games with it in the 1980’s)} 7. Qd2 c5 8. d5 Ne5 9. h3 {
(Intending to force the Ne5 back, but it’s not so simple. Meanwhile White
spends another tempo on a pawn move and creates another hole on the K-side.)}
Nh5 10. Qf2 ({The alternative} 10. Bf2 {led to a Black brilliancy in
Belyavsky-Nunn, Wijk aan Zee 1985 after} f5 11. exf5 Rxf5!! 12. g4 Rxf3! 13.
gxh5 Qf8) 10… f5 11. O-O-O?? ({(After the better} 11. exf5 gxf5 12. f4 Ng6 {
Black has adequate counterplay)}) 11… f4 12. Bd2 Ng3 {(Now White has no play
on the K-side and can only await Black’s assault on the Q-side)} 13. Rh2 a6 14.
Kb1 ({One problem is that after the obvious} 14. Nge2?? Nd3+ {wins the Queen})
14… Bd7 ({A good alternative is to play it like a Benko Gambit with} 14… b5
15. cxb5 Nxf1 16. Qxf1 axb5 17. Nxb5 Qb6 {with powerful threats}) 15. Bc1 Rb8
16. Bd3 Nh5 {(Not allowing White to bail out with 17. Bxf4 Rxf4 18. Qxg3)} 17.
Rd2 b5 18. Nge2 Qa5 19. Rh1? Rb7?? ({(I was so focused on a methodical
buildup that I overlooked that} 19… Nxd3 20. Rxd3 bxc4 {wins a piece
immediately:} 21. Rd2 Bxc3 22. Nxc3 Qxc3) 20. Qe1 bxc4 ({(And even here, much
more thematic would be} 20… Nxd3 21. Rxd3 bxc4 22. Rd1 Ng3! {since} 23. Rg1
(23. Nxg3 Bxc3) 23… Nxe2 24. Nxe2 Qa3 25. Qd2 Rfb8 {is crushing}) 21. Bc2 Bb5
(21… Rfb8 {also wins}) 22. Ka1 Nd3 23. Bxd3 cxd3 {(And White, seeing that
his intended 24. Nxb5 Qxb5 25. Nc3 is met by Bxc3 26. bxc3 Qb1 mate, resigned.)
} 0-1[/ctpgn]

2016 General Membership Meeting

The 2016 General Membership meeting will be held in conjunction with the Missouri Open. The meeting will be from 9:30 until 10:00 AM, prior to round 4, on December 11th, at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center, 4657 Maryland Ave., Saint Louis, MO 63108.

Paul Keres and the Sicilian Wing Gambit

by Ken Jones


After studying a number of his games, I found it interesting that a world-class player like Keres would occasionally play the Wing Gambit against the Sicilian.  True, he made no claim of its soundness, but used it as a surprise weapon with the knowledge that Black would have to work out its details while the clock was ticking.  It was also a psychological choice against opponents who had well-constructed opening repertoires.  Off the board, though, my review of these games reveal more promising lines for Black than for White.


1. e4 c5 2. Nf3


Keres used the immediate 2. b4 only one time (against V. Vulberg, 1935 Estonian Ch.)  After 2…cxb4 3. a3 e6 4. axb4 Bxb4 5. c3 Bf8 6. d4 d5 7. e5 we have reached a position that may also arise from a topical gambit line against the French (1. e4 e6 2. Nf3 d5 3. e5 c5 4. b4 cxb4 5. a3, etc.)  Keres eventually won on time in a completely lost position, and thereafter preferred to delay the gambit.




The O’Kelly variation  2…a6  can also be “winged”:  3. b4 cxb4 4. a3 d5?!  (this central reaction is simply mistaken here, as Black does not even get a pawn for his troubles)  5. exd5 Qxd5? 6. axb4 Bg4 7. Nc3 Qh5? (misplacing the Q; Black should probably bail out with 7…Qe6+ as 7…Bxf3? loses material by 8. Nxd5 Bxd1 9. Nc7+ Kd8 10. Nxa8 and the N can escape via b6) 8. Be2 e6 9. 0-0  (The immediate 9. Ra5! also embarrasses the Q)  Nf6 10. Ra5 Nd5 11. h3  (11. Nxd5 exd5 12. Re1 Be7 13. c4 also looks logical and strong to me)  Bxf3 12. Bxf3 Nxc3 13. dxc3 Qg6 14. Qd4  (Black’s position is hopeless)  Qf6 15. Qc4 Nd7 16. Bg5 Qg6 17. Bxb7 Rb8 18. Bc6 Be7 19. Bxd7+ Kxd7 20. Rd1+ Ke8 21. Qc7 (1-0), Keres-T. Gauffin, Helsinki 1935.


3. b4 cxb4


Rather than accept the pawn, Black will often play 3…Nf6, but Keres himself wryly noted that the gambit would be seen much more in international tournaments if this were the best reply! Still, there is nothing wrong with Black’s game after  4. bxc5 Nxe4 5. cxd6 Nxd6 6. Na3 Nc6.  In actual practice vs Keres, though, Black reacted weakly:  6…Qa5?! 7. Nc4 Nxc4 8. Bxc4 e6 9.0-0 (Keres-J. Turn, Tallinn 1937) and 6…Qc7?! 7. Bb2 Bg4 8. Be2 Nd7 9. 0-0 Nf6 10. c4 (Keres-S. Herseth, Stockholm 1937).  In both cases White has an edge in development, central control and plenty of open lines.


4. d4 Nf6


4…g6  (Keres noted that the fianchetto is logical)  5. Bb5+?! Bd7 6. Bc4 Qc8?!  (White’s experimental approach provoked an awkward response; the obvious …Nc6 is better)  7. Nbd2 Bg7 8. 0-0 Nf6 9. e5 dxe5 10. dxe5 Ng4 11. Qe2 0-0  (again, 11…Nc6 12. Bb2 Qc7 gets pieces on better squares)  12. h3 Nh6 13. a3  (finally making it a real gambit)  Nc6 14. axb4 Nxb4 15. Rb1 Nc6 16. Ba3 Nf5 17. Qe4 Be6?!  (the anticipated misplay)  18. Bxe6 Qxe6? 19. g4 Nh6 20. Rxb7 Nxe5 21. Rxe7 Nxf3+ 22. Qxf3  (White regained the pawn with a slight edge due to the stranded Nh6)  Qf6 23. Qe2 Rfd8 24. Ne4 Qc6 25. Re1 Bf8?  (“winning” the exchange leaves his K-side fatally weak)  26. Qf3 Bxe7?? 27. Rxe7  (threatening the Queen by Nf6+)  Rdc8 28. Qf4 (1-0), Keres-I. Dyner, Ostend 1937.


5. Bd3

5. Nbd2 Nc6 6. Bb2 e6  (This is a common set-up against the gambit.  Black keeps the small center (pawns on d6 & e6) and develops behind it, hoping to get his King safe before trying to use the extra pawn.  White will also not rush forward, but try to put his pieces on good squares while playing around the pawn on b4)  7. Bd3 Be7 8. 0-0 0-0 9. Qe2 Ne8  (the immediate 9…d5 10. e5 Nd7 is possible, when Black can later play …Re8 & …Nf8 to guard the K)  10. Rfe1 d5 11. Qe3?!  (inching toward the K-side, but too slow)  a6 12. Qf4 Qc7 13. e5 f5!  (Using a tactic to close the position.  Black’s King is now safe enough)  14. h4 Nd8??  (14…Nf6! heading to e4 gives Black the better game)  15. Rac1 Nf7?  (now 15…Nf6!? could be met by 16. exf6 Qxf4 17. fxe7 Re8 18. exd8/Q Rxd8 which is unclear; materially, Black is doing fine but White’s total control of the dark squares should not be underestimated)  16. c4 bxc3 17. Rxc3  (as often happens with gambits, Black has kept the extra pawn but is behind in development and is passively placed, with plenty of weak squares to guard)  Qd8 18. Ba3!  (securing domination of the dark squares–which Black’s next move further weakens)  g6? 19. Bxe7 Qxe7 20. Rb1  (with Black’s King hard to get at, White turns his attention to the other side of the board)  Ng7 21. Nb3 Nd8 22. Nc5 b5 23. a4 Nh5?  (this only chases the Queen to where the action is)  24. Qc1! Rf7  (now 24…bxa4 25. Nxa4 is ruinous)  25. axb5 a5?  (25…axb5 is no fun, but to let White keep the pawn loses quickly)  26. Ng5 Rg7 27. b6 h6 28. Nf3 g5 29. hxg5 hxg5 30. Na4 Bd7 31. b7 Rb8 32. Rc8 Nf4 33. Rxb8 Nxd3 34. Qc7 (1-0), Keres-R. Bruno, Havana 1960.




Perhaps this is why Keres waited until Black played 2…d6 to offer the gambit–striking in the center now costs Black a tempo.  In a rare appearance of the Wing Gambit in modern grandmaster play, 5…g6 was played was seen in Timur Gareev-Gata Kamsky, 2015 US Ch.  After 6. a3 bxa3 7. 0-0 Bg7 8. h3 0-0 9. Bg5 Nc6 10. Nc3 Nd7 11. Nd5 h6 12. Bh4 Nb6  (12…g5!?) 13. c3 Bd7  (13…Be6!?)  14. Rxa3, White had enough for the pawn.  The game was drawn in 46 moves after a hard-fought struggle.


6. Nbd2 dxe4


6…e6 7. e5 Nfd7 8. 0-0 Nc6  is another way to play it, when White should try to get control of the dark squares by 9. a3.


7. Nxe4


For the rest of this game, I will make liberal use of Keres’ comments mixed in with my own observations.




7…Nxe4 8. Bxe4 Nd7 9. c4! Nf6  (9…bxc3 10. Qb3, Keres)  10. Bc2  (with initiative, Keres)  e6 11. 0-0 Be7  (S. Buchal-H. Freise, Menden 1974) when both 12. a3!? or  12.Qd3!?  give active play.


8. Neg5


Here, too, 8. c4 bxc3 9. Qb3  would lead to lively and interesting play (Keres), while simply 9. Nxc3 also gives adequate compensation.




8…h6 9. Ne6 Qb6 10. Nxf8  followed by 11. 0-0 (Keres).


9. c4


Since the game continuation eventually gives Black the advantage, I suggest the simple 9. 0-0 e6 10. Re1, with compensation for the pawn.




Keres implied that  9…bxc3 10. Qb3 e6 11. Nxf7!  was good for White, but the computer now continues  11…Nc5! 12. dxc5 Kxf7 13. Qxc3 Qxc5 when Black is at least equal.


10. Nh3 g5


“No bad move” (Keres); my computer thinks more highly of it than that!  To the modern eye, it seems like typical active defense, ignoring positional weakness to gain an initiative.


11. Nhg1


Given an ! by Keres, who noted that the N that started out on b1 now resides on the other N’s home square!  He considers White’s position “more or less satisfactory”, which is somewhat generous.


11…Bg7 12. Ne2 e5 13. Ng3 0-0 14. 0-0 e4?


A mistake, although given an ! by Keres.  Better is  14…Re8! 15. Re1 exd4 16. Nxd4 Ne5  giving Black a large advantage (Fritz);  14…exd4 15. h4! g4 16. Nxd4  is suggested by Keres without evaluation, but again Fritz prefers Black.


15. Nxe4 Nxe4 16. Bxe4 Qxc4 17. Bd3 Qd5 18. Re1 g4 19. Nh4 Nb6!?


A practical choice.  Black faces a stiff attack after  19…Qxd4 20. Nf5 Qxa1 21. Qxg4, but he can survive with 21…Kh8!  (Black gets mated after 21…Nc5 22. Nxh6+ Kh8 23. Qh5 [Euwe], or 21…Qf6 22. Bxh6 Ne5 23. Ne7+ Kh8 24. Bxg7+ Kxg7 25. Qh5+)  22. Nxh6 Qc3!  (22…Bxh6 23. Qh4 Kg8! 24. Qxh6 Qg7 25. Qh4! [Keres] with a winning attack a Rook down)  23. Nxf7+  (White also forces a draw after 23. Nf5 Qxe1+ 24. Bf1 Qe5 25. Bb2 Bf6 26. Qh5+)  Rxf7 24. Qh4+ Kg8 25. Bh7+ Kh8  (…Kf8?? 26 Qd8 mate).


20. Rb1 Bd7 21. Re4?


Better is 21. Rxb4  and White would not be worse (Keres).


21…Rfe8 22. Rf4 Qd6?


Keres gave 22…Na4! 23. Bd2! Nc3 24. Bxc3 bxc3 25. Bc2!, but the silicon solution  Qxa2!! 26. Bb3 Qd2 just wins for Black, as do the alternatives  22…Qxa2 & 22…a5.


23. Bd2 Nd5 24. Rxg4! Bxg4??


Once again, the strain of constant defense proves too great.  Black could hold the balance after  24…Nc3 25. Bxc3 bxc3 26. Nf5 Bxf5 27. Bxf5.


25. Qxg4 Qf6 26. Nf5 Kf8 27. Nxg7!


Once White has eliminated the strong defensive Bishop of his opponent, he soon obtains a decisive attack (Keres).  There is little add to that.


27…Qxg7 28. Qh5 Nf6 29. Qh4 h5 30. Rxb4 Rac8 31. h3! Rc7 32. Rb5 Re6 33. Rxh5 (1-0), Keres-E. Eliskases, Semmering 1937.


1 2 3