Friday, March 5, 2010

Queen Sacrifice

In a chess blog full of Queen sacrifices, the Queen sacrifice in the following game is truly remarkable.  In fact, the whole game is off the beaten track.

Antwerp, 1901
Ruy Lopez Opening, Berlin Defense Rio Gambit Accepted

1. e4, e5
2. Nf3, Nc6
3. Bb5, Nf6
4. 0-0, Nxe4

The old Berlin Defense, rarely seen nowadays.

5. Re1 ....

The alternative 5. d4 is more likely to create difficulty for Black.

5. .... Nd6
6. Nxe5, Be7

Of course not 6. .... Nxb5, 7. Nxc6 dis ch winning Black's Queen.

7. Bf1, 0-0
8. d4, Nf5
9. c3, d5

Here Black has an easier game with 9. .....Nxe5, 10. dxe5 d6.

10. Qd3, Re8
11. f4, Nd6
12. Re3, Na5 ?

Feeble.  Much better was 12.....Bf5 then Be4.

13. Nd2, Nf5 ?
14. Rh3, Nh4 ?

Instead of effectively centralizing his Queen Bishop, Black has badly posted his Knights.

15. g4, Ng6
16. Rh5 ......

White intends to increase pressure with Qh3, but Black's next move offers a stunning inspiration.

16. .... Nc6

17. N2c4 ! ......

One of the deepest surprise moves ever played. Had Black dreamed of what was coming, he would have tried 17. .... Ncxe5.

17. .....dxc4
18. Qxg6 !! .....

The expendable Queen.  After 18. ....fxg6 there follows 19. Bxc4+ Kf8, 20. Nxg6+ hxg6, 21. Rh8 mate.

18. ... hxg6
19. Nxg6!, fxg6
20. Bxc4, Resigns

Black cannot stop mate.  Truly an unconventional game.

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