White to Play

Pete Tamburro on

Published in Chess Puzzles

Every once in a while, you get to play over a miniature game that you just enjoy because of all its possibilities. I’ve spent some time annotating those possibilities in this game, Gerbec-Weil, Vienna, 1933. Both sides make errors and the king hunts are fascinating. I hope you play over them.1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Nxe4 6. d4 b5 7. d5 {Speculative but aggressive.} Ne7 (Best is considered to be 7... d6 8. dxc6 bxa4 9. Re1 f5 but some players shy away from this because it looks too breezy around the king. 8. Re1 Nd6 {Playable, but you have to ask yourself as Black if this is really where you want your knight?} 9.Nxe5 bxa4 10. Nc3 (VERY speculative! More prudent was 10. c4 Ndf5 11. Nc3 d6 12. Nc6 Qd7 13. Bd2 Bb7 14. Qxa4) 10... Bb7 11. Bg5 h6 12. Qh5 hxg5 (12... a3 13. bxa3 Rg8 14. Rad1 THEN hxg5 would have been better.) 13. Qxh8 Qb8 {Can you figure out why Black played this?} SEE DIAGRAM

The game continued: 14. Ng6? (The best way to mate was 14. Ng4 Qa7 15. Nf6+ gxf6 16. Rxe7+ Kxe7 17. Re1+ Ne4 18. Rxe4+ Kd6 19. Qxf6+ Kc5 20. Nxa4+ Kb5 21. Nc3+ Ka5 22. Ra4# and that’s the answer to today’s puzzle!) 14... fxg6 15. Qg8 Qa7 (Black was so concerned about castling on the queenside that he wasted precious time with his queen. Another move would have won: 15... g4 16. Rxe7+ Kxe7 17. Re1+ Kf6) 16. Rxe7+ Kxe7 17. Re1+ Kf6 18. g4 Nf7 (18... Re8 19. Rxe8 Be7 (19... Nxe8 20.Qxf8+ Ke5 21. Qxe8+ Kd6 22. Qf8+ Ke5 23. Qe7+ Kd4 24. Qe3+ Kc4 25. Qxa7) 20. h4 Nxe8 21. Qxe8 gxh4 22. g5+ Kxg5 23. Qxe7+) 19. Ne4+ Ke5 20. Qxf7 and Black Resigns as after Kd4 21. Qf3 Kc4 22. Qd3+ Kb4 23. a3+ Ka5 24. b4+ Kb6 25. Qe3+ c5 26. bxc5+ Kc7 27. d6+ Kc8 28. Nxg5 Bc6 29. Qe8+ Kb7 30. Rb1+ Bb5 31. Qxd7+ Kb8 32. Qd8+ Kb7 33. Qc7#


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