Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Flaws (Part II)

Amateur - Blackburne
London, 1885
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ g6

"Not to be outdone in generosity," Blackburne added in his 1899 collection Mr. Blackburne's Games at Chess.

In the American edition of Cook's Synopsis [American Supplement to the "Synopsis," Containing American Inventions In the Chess Openings Together With Fresh Analysis in the Openings Since 1882; also a list of Chess Clubs in the United States and Canada, 1884, edited by J.W. Miller] ...Ke6 is given as the best defence, but Mr. Blackburne's ingenious counter sacrifice in the present skirmish would seem to show that the text is at least as good -- Brooklyn Chess Cronicle, August 15, 1885 [Here and below, the annotation has been changed from descriptive to algebraic notation.]

Not considered in Alonzo Wheeler Jerome's earliest analysis, 6...g6 was seen at least as early as in the 5th game of the second match between Mexican Champion Andres Clemente Vazquez and American William Harrington, Mexico 1876 (Vazquez won the match 12-3-1): 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+ Kxf7 5.Nxe5+ Nxe5 6.Qh5+ g6 7.Qxe5 Nf6 8.Qxc5 d6 9.Qe3 Re8 10.d3 Ng4 11.Qf3+ Kg7 12.0-0 Rf8 13.Qg3 Qf6 14.h3 Ne5 15.Nc3 c6 16.Bg5 Qe6 17.Qh4 Nf7 18.f4 h6 19.f5 hxg5 20.fxe6 gxh4 21.Rxf7+ Rxf7 22.exf7 Kxf7 23.Rf1+ Kg7 24.e5 d5 25.Ne2 b5 26.Nd4 Bd7 27.Rf6 Rc8 28.Rd6 Be8 29.Kf2 Kf7 30.Kf3 c5 31.Ne2 d4 32.Kg4 Rc6 33.Kxh4 Rxd6 34.exd6 Kf6 35.Ng3 Bc6 36.Ne4+ Bxe4 37.dxe4 a5 38.e5+ Ke6 39.Kg3 1-0

7.Qxe5 d6

Despite the accolades awarded to this game, Black has a stronger counter-attack here, starting with 7...Qe7! as Jerome discovered to his dismay in the games of his correspondence match with Lt. G. N. Whistler, secretary of the Lexington, Kentucky Chess Club, in 1876.

8.Qxh8 Qh4 9.0-0

"He should have attempted to free his piece by d4 before castling," was the opinion of the Brooklyn Chess Chronicle, with White then having an edge.

9....Nf6 10.c3

"The only hope he had was 10.Qd8, thus preventing the deadly move of ...Ng4" -- Brooklyn Chess Chronicle.

Masterly analysis by Geoff Chandler and Todor Dimitrov showed that in the resulting play, the game would be drawn.

10.... Ng4 11.h3 Bxf2+ 12.Kh1 Bf5 13.Qxa8 Qxh3+ 14.gxh3 Bxe4 mate

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