Wednesday, January 7, 2009


Lasker v. Steinitz
World Championship Match, Game 13, 1894.05.05
C68 - Ruy Lopez, Exchange Variation Notes by Steinitz

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1.e4 e5
2.Nf3 Nc6
3.Bb5 a6

Probably fully as good as 3...d6, and also adopted on the presumption that White was probably not so well prepared for it.


A favorite continuation of Winawer; but most masters prefer 4.Ba4.

4. ..... dxc6


Winawer castled at this point, and other masters prefer the slow development by 5.d3 and 6.Be3.

5. ..... exd4
6.Qxd4 Qxd4
7.Nxd4 c5

This is new and probably of greater value than the usual 7...Bd6 which places this bishop too much in the way of the hostile pawns. But still better would be the simple 7...Bd7.

8.Ne2 Bd7
9.Nbc3 0-0-0

A premature attack which subsequently costs time; the bishop should at once have been posted at e3.

10. ..... Bc6
11.0-0 Nf6
12.f3 Be7
13.Ng3 g6


14.Bg5 and if 14...h6 then 15.Be3; or else 14.Rfd1 both afterward suggested by Lasker were undoubtedly superior to the text.

14. ..... Nd7

Mere demonstrative tactics were evidently out of order, and White retreats his pieces with a view to concentration for operations in the center.

15. ..... Nb6
16.Nf1 Rd7
17.Be3 Rhd8

18. ...... c4

Black could not allow the opponent to advance pawn to c4, as sooner or later it would have enabled White to plant one of his knights at d5 with great effect. Moreover, Black obtains a strong attack for the pawn sacrificed.

19.Bxb6 cxb6

It was White's best policy probably not to accept the proffered pawn, but to continue 20.Nde3 instead.

20. ..... Bb4
21.c3 Bc5+


Obviously if 22.Nfe3 Rxd1 and wins.; and if 22.Nde3 Rd3 23.Rac1 f5! with a strong attack.

22. ..... Rd3
23.Rc1 a5

23...f5 would be premature, and this more quiet advance does important service on the queen's wing in the ending. White is in the mean time much hampered.

24.Nde3 f5

Now correctly timed and extremely difficult to meet.

25.exf5 (Sealed)

25.Nd5 might have prolonged resistance, but would hardly equalize the game: e.g. 25.Nd5 fxe4 26.fxe4 Rf8 27.Rc2 h5 with a strong attack.

25. ..... gxf5

If 26.Nxf5 Rxf3 27.Ne7+ ( 27.gxf3 Bxf3#) 27...Bxe7 28.gxf3 Bxf3+ 29.Kg1 Bc5+ 30.Ne3 Rd2 31.a4 Rg2+ 32.Kf1 Rxh2 and if 33.Rc2 Rh1+ 34.Kf2 Rxe1 and wins.

26. ..... Rg8

27.Nxf5 would be again disastrous on account of the same rejoinder - 27...Rxf3.

27. ..... Bxd5
28.cxd5 Rxd5
29.Rcd1 Rxd1
30.Rxd1 f4

This and the following series of moves give Black a winning superiority in position. The white knight is a prisoner, and the end can be only a question of time.

31.Kh2 Re8
32.a4 Kc7
33.h4 Kc6
34.c4 Bb4
35.Kh3 Re1
36.Rxe1 Bxe1
37.Kg4 Kc5
38.Kxf4 Kxc4
39.Ke4 Bxh4
40.g3 Bd8
41.Ne3+ Kb4
42.Kd3 Kxa4
43.Kc2 Kb4
44.f4 Kc5
45.f5 Kd6
46.g4 b5
47.Nd1 Ke5
48.Nc3 b4
49.Na4 Kd4
50.Nb2 b5
51.Kb3 Be7
52.g5 a4+
53.Nxa4 bxa4+
54.Kxa4 Ke5
55.Kb5 Kxf5

Final Position, after 55...Kxf5

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