alrick h. man

Rudolf Smirka - Carlos Torre [C29]

Alrick H. Man Vienna Gambit Theme Tournament/New York, NY USA 1925


 

By Michael Goeller

Carlos Torre makes a terrible error in the following game but both players overlook the refutation and the GM eventually outplays his opponent to gain the full point. Interestingly, Torre does not mention the refutation of his play in his notes to the game, suggesting that the refutation was not yet well known -- even though it had already been demonstrated in a game of Euwe's from 1921. In my notes on the following game, we examine the many ways that Black can go wrong -- as Torre does -- when playing against the Vienna Gambit.

 

1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nf6 3. f4 d5

"An attack on the wing is best met with a counter attack in the center." Besides, the alternatives are all bad:

 

a) 3... Bb4? 4. fxe5 Bxc3 5. dxc3! (5. exf6 Bxf6 6. Nf3 d6 7. d4 O-O 8. Bd3 Nc6 9. c3 1-0 Bigelow,H-LeCount,F/ New York 1925 (47).) 5... Nxe4 6. Qg4! Nc5 7. Qxg7 Qh4+ 8. Kd1! Rf8 9. Nf3 Qh5 10. Bh6 Ne6 11. Qxh7!? (11. g4! Nxg7 12. gxh5) 11... Ng5 12. Qg7 Ne6 13. g4! Nxg7 14. gxh5 Rg8? 15. Rg1 Kf8 16. Ng5 1-0 Zalmen Kornin-Gerardo Frota/Fortaleza 1979.

 

b) 3... Nc6? 4. fxe5 Nxe5 5. d4 Nc6 (5... Ng6 6. e5 Ng8 7. Nf3 (7. Bc4?! Nxe5!) 7... d6 (7... d5 8. Bd3) 8. Bc4 dxe5 9. O-O!) 6. e5 Ng8 7. Nf3 d5 8. Bd3 (8. Bb5) 8... Bb4 9. O-O Bg4 10. Ne2 f6 11. c3 fxe5 12. cxb4 e4 13. b5 Nb4 14. Bb1 (14. Ne5) 14... exf3 15. gxf3 Bh3 16. Rf2 a6 17. Nf4 Bd7 18. Qe1+ Qe7 19. Re2 1-0 Karel Hromadka-F Jonet/ Paris 1924.

 

c) 3... exf4?! 4. e5 Ng8 (4... Qe7 5. Qe2 Ng8 6. Nf3) 5. Nf3 Be7?! (5... d5 6. d4 g5 7. h4 g4 8. Ng1 f3 9. gxf3 Be7 10. Bg5!?) 6. Bc4! Bh4+? 7. g3! (7. Kf1) 7... fxg3 8. O-O gxh2+ 9. Kh1 b5? (9... Nh6 10. d4 d5 11. exd6 Nf5 12. Qe2+ Kf8 13. Ne4 cxd6 14. Nxh4 Qxh4 15. Bg5!) 10. Bxf7+! Kf8 (10... Kxf7 11. Nxh4+ Nf6 12. Qh5+ g6 13. Qg5) 11. Bd5 Ke8 (11... c6 12. Nxh4+) 12. Nxh4 Qxh4 13. Qf3 Nh6 14. Bxa8 Nc6 15. Bxc6 dxc6 16. d3 Nf5 17. Ne4 Rf8 18. Bg5 Ng3+ 19. Qxg3 Qh5 20. Rxf8+ Kxf8 21. Rf1+ Ke8 22. Qf4 1-0 George Henry Mackenzie-Harsen Darwin Smith/ Cleveland 1871.

 

4. fxe5 Nxe4 5. Nf3 Bg4 6. Qe2!










Viennese master Arthur Kaufmann's move. "'If in doubt play Qe2' could be White's slogan in this line" writes Gary Lane.

 

6... Nc6?

A common error because the refutation is far from obvious.

 

a) 6... Nxc3 is best, as seen in Torre - Norwood, for instance.

 

b) 6... Nc5?! gets Black in trouble, as demonstrated in a famous game: 7. d4 Bxf3 (White snags at least a pawn after 7... Ne6 8. Qb5+ c6 (8... Nc6 9. Qxb7 Nexd4 10. Bb5) (8... Nd7 9. Be3!) 9. Qxb7 Bxf3 10. Be3! Bxg2 11. Bxg2 Nc7 12. O-O Be7 13. Bf4 O-O 14. e6! (better than 14. Bh3 1-0 Lebrun,B (2207)-Marchyllie,B (2162)/France 2002. (37)) 14... Nxe6 15. Qxa8) 8. Qxf3! (8. gxf3 Ne6 9. Qb5+?! Nc6) 8... Qh4+?! (Black's greed leads to trouble, but White also has a huge advantage after 8... Ne6 9. Be3 with a big lead in development, control of the center, and attacking chances on the half-open f-file.) 9. g3 Qxd4 10. Be3! Qxe5 (10... Qb4 11. Bb5+ (11. O-O-O c6 Spielmann 12. a3! (12. Nxd5!? cxd5 13. Qxd5 Be7 14. Bxc5 Qxc5 15. Qxb7 O-O 16. Qxa8 Nc6 17. Qb7 Bg5+ 18. Kb1 Rb8 19. Qc7 Rxb2+ 20. Kxb2 Qb4+ 21. Ka1 Qc3+=) 12... Qa5 (12... Qb6 13. b4) 13. Nxd5! cxd5 (13... Nbd7 14. Bxc5 Bxc5 15. b4) 14. Qxd5 Be7 15. Bxc5 Qxc5 16. Qxb7 O-O 17. Qxa8 Bg5+ 18. Kb1 Nc6 19. Qb7 Rb8 20. Qc7) 11... Nbd7 (11... c6 12. O-O) (11... Nc6 12. O-O-O O-O-O 13. Rxd5 Rxd5 14. Qxd5) 12. Bxc5 Bxc5 13. Bxd7+ Kxd7 14. Qxd5+ Kc8 15. O-O-O) 11. O-O-O! c6 12. Nxd5! cxd5 13. Rxd5 Qe6? (13... Qc7 14. Bf4! (14. Bxc5!? Bxc5 15. Bb5+ Nc6 16. Rxc5 O-O 17. Bxc6 Rac8 18. Bxb7 Qxc5 19. Bxc8 Rxc8 20. c3) 14... Qb6 15. Bxb8! Be7! Spielmann(15... Rxb8 16. Qf4 Rd8 17. Bb5+ Qxb5 18. Re1+ Be7 19. Rxe7+ Kxe7 20. Qe5+ Ne6 21. Rxb5 Spielmann) 16. Be5 O-O 17. Bc4) (13... Qe4? 14. Bb5+ Nc6 15. Bxc5!!) 14. Bc4! Qe4 15. Bxc5! 1-0 Spielmann,R-Flamberg, A/Mannheim 1914. Of course, there is a quick finish after 15...Qxf3 16.Re1+ etc.

 

7. Nxe4 Nd4?

The logical follow-up to Black's previous move, but this should lose a piece!

Black's best chance is just to accept the loss of a pawn after 7... dxe4 8. Qxe4 Qd7 (8... Bxf3 9. gxf3) 9. Bb5 Rd8 10. c3 Be7 11. d4

 

8. Qd3 Bxf3

 










9. gxf3?

In the end, White gains no material with this move, though he does maintain some advantage.

 

Though it is tough to find over the board, White can actually win a piece with 9. Ng3! Bc5 10. gxf3 Qg5 11. c3 Qxe5+ 12. Be2 Nc6 13. Qf5 Qd6 14. d4 Bb6 15. Bf4 Qe6 16. O-O-O  O-O-O 17. Bd3 g6 18. Qxe6+ fxe6 19. Bh6 Rhg8 20. f4 Ne7 21. Rde1 Kd7 22. Re5 Rge8 23. Bg5 Rc8 24. Rhe1 Ng8 25. Bf1 h6 26. Bh3 hxg5 27. Rxe6 Rxe6 28. Bxe6+ Euwe - Yates, The Hague 1921. I'm surprised that Torre did not know this game or the trap.

 

9... dxe4 10. Qxe4 Qh4+! 11. Qxh4 Nxf3+ 12. Kf2 Nxh4 13. d4 Rd8 14. c3 Be7

White still has a clear edge due to the two Bishops and his control of the center. But GM Torre has little trouble outplaying his opponent.

 

15. Rg1 O-O 16. Bh3

16. b4! stifles Black's queenside counterplay, while 16... f6 17. Bc4+ Kh8 18. e6 favors White.

 

16... c5! 17. Be3 cxd4 18. cxd4

Better 18. Bxd4 Ng6 19. Bf5

 

18... f5 19. Ke2 f4 20. Bf2 f3+ 21. Ke3 Ng6 22. Rac1?!

22. Be6+ places the Bishop on a more active diagonal in anticipation of Nf4 by Black.

 

22... Nf4! 23. Bf1 Nd5+ 24. Kd3 Rf4! 25. a3

25. Bg3 Nb4+ 26. Ke3 Rfxd4

 

25... Bh4 26. Rc2?

White is still in the game after 26. Bg3

 

26... Bxf2 27. Rxf2 Nb6 28. Ke3 Rdxd4! 29. Rxf3 Rfe4+ 30. Kf2 Rd2+ 31. Kg3 Rxe5

Black's Rook on the seventh, generally more active pieces, and tactical threats (including Rg5+) give him a strong advantage. Notice how White's two Bishops and pawn center have been completely eliminated.

 

32. Bh3 h6!?

Ever cautious and unhurried, Torre takes time to take care of back rank issues before securing materal.

 

33. Bg4 h5 34. Bf5 g5 35. Rgf1 Nd5!

Threatening Nf4, with ideas of Rxf5 or mate at g2.

 

36. h4 g4 37. Rb3 Ree2 38. Rg1 Ne3?

Black loses his sense of caution. Simple and winning was 38... b6! when he can meet 39. Bg6 with 39... Nf6 (or 39... Rh2! 40. Bxh5 Rh3+ 41. Kxg4 Rxb3)

Not immediately 38... Rh2? 39. Bxg4 hxg4 40. Rxb7 and Black will have trouble winning with so few pawns.

 

39. Be6+?

39. Bg6! picks up the kingside pawns and makes winning hard for Black.

 

39... Kg7 40. Rxb7+ Kf6 41. Bc8

 










41... Rd3

Black actually has mate in three: 41... Rg2+ 42. Kf4 Nd5+ 43. Ke4 Rge2#

 

42. Bxg4 Nxg4+ 43. Kf4 Rd4+

and mate will follow. A nice finish for Torre -- but a lucky break too!

 

0-1

[Michael Goeller]

download pgn

Game in PGN

See also:

The Alrick H. Man Vienna Gambit Theme Tournament

The Dimock Theme Tournaments and the Brooklyn Daily Eagle

Torre - Norwood, Alrick H. Man Theme Tournament

Vienna Gambit (C29) Bibliography

 

Copyright © 2014 by Michael Goeller