Friday, February 28

Teichmann-Spielmann match, Game 5: Teichmann wins again, leads 4-1 with one game remaining

Richard Teichmann defeated Rudolf Spielmann yet again in the fifth game of their match at Leipzig to increase his lead to 4-1 and assure himself of victory in the six-game series, whose final contest will nevertheless be played as scheduled. In the fifth game Spielmann, in need of a win to keep alive his hopes of a tie match, chose a deferred form of the aggressive Jänisch (or Schliemann) Defense against Teichmann's Ruy Lopez, viz. 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 f5, a variation not unknown to Teichmann, as the German Master had faced it in the tenth game of his match vs. Napier at Glasgow in 1905. The present encounter followed the course of that earlier contest until Black's 7th move, when Spielmann chose 7...Be7 in place of Napier's 7...Bd6. A critical moment arose soon thereafter, as Black's 12...Na5?, seeking to exchange the opposing light-squared Bishop, allowed Teichmann to play the powerful piece sacrifice 13.Bxd5! Nxd5 14.Rxf8+ Qxf8 15.Nxd5 Bxg5 16.Qh5!, with a well-nigh winning position for White. Spielmann could find no better defense to White's numerous threats than the immediate return of the piece, after which Black still remained in a most precarious situation. Indeed, Teichmann very likely could have decided the contest via direct attack, but with only a draw being necessary for victory in the series the German opted for quieter methods, entering a far superior endgame following the exchange of Queens at the 28th move. The contest came to a sudden conclusion when Spielmann apparently overlooked the blow 32.Rxg7+!, which assures White of a two-pawn surplus.

Herewith the game:


Thursday, February 27

Yates in action: British Champion wins hard-fought battle on first board for Leeds club

British Champion F.D. Yates is a busy man, with national and international tournaments, regional congresses, county matches, exhibition games, and chess club engagements on his schedule. Today we present a fine fighting game won recently by Yates on first board for the Leeds Chess Club in yet another competition, a Woodhouse Cup match vs. Sheffield, the Woodhouse Cup being the annual battle for supremacy among the five Yorkshire clubs Leeds, Sheffield, Huddersfield, Bradford, and Hull. The Leeds club, winner of this event for the past three years running, is, we understand, poised to record its fourth successive Cup victory this year, owing in no small part to the strength of its top player.

In the game subjoined Mr. Dale of the Sheffield Club gives an excellent account of himself, outplaying the British Champion for much of the contest before going down to honorable defeat in a full-blooded struggle, the same fate met with by many a Master who has crossed swords with Mr. Yates.

The notes to the game are based in part on those appearing in the Sheffield Weekly News and in part on analysis by members of our club.

Wednesday, February 26

Teichmann-Spielmann match, Game 4: Teichmann scores again, leads 3-1; Spielmann endgame error turns likely win into loss

Richard Teichmann scored another victory over Rudolf Spielmann in the fourth game of their match at Leipzig and now leads the contest by the score of 3-1 with two games yet to be played. The latest encounter proved a tragedy for Spielmann, who through one ill-considered move undid hours of careful work and saw a likely endgame win converted into a painful loss. The Austrian Master must now take both of the remaining games from his formidable opponent in order to make an even score in the series, a difficult task indeed in view of the general course of play to date.

Spielmann, having the move, again chose to open with the King's pawn, varying from the Scotch Opening of second game with 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3. Teichmann replied with 3...Bb4, the Three Knights' Game, and a most interesting struggle of heterogeneous forces ensued, as by the 14th move both of Black's Bishops had been exchanged for White's Knights. Queens were traded five moves later, leading to an endgame that seemed rather in favor of the first player. The tension increased when Teichmann at his 26th turn played his Knight into the heart of the enemy position with 26...Nd3, and for the next several moves the battle centered around White's efforts to capture, and Black's to protect, the adventurous steed. Spielmann, who conducted this phase of the contest with great mastery, seemed at the 34th move at last ready to reap the rewards of his fine play, but then to his regret chose the erroneous 34.Bxc4? in place of 34.Bxb6!, which latter move appears to win. Teichmann's reply 34...Nxb2! won the exchange, Spielmann having overlooked until too late that the tempting rejoinder 35.Rxd7+ could be answered by 35...Nxd7!, leaving White's Rook and Bishop both under attack by the Black Knight. In the subsequent play the Black Rooks invaded White's camp and, by combining pawn captures with mating threats, Teichmann ultimately forced his opponent's resignation at the 50th move. We present the game score below, with brief notes at the critical moment.

Tuesday, February 25

Gibson wins Scottish Championship at Dundee

Mr. William Gibson of Glasgow has won the Scottish Championship for the third time, topping a six-man field at the 31st annual Congress of the Scottish Chess Association, held at Dundee earlier this year. Mr. Gibson, who previously captured the title in 1907 and 1912, scored 3 1/2 points from five games to edge out Messrs. D. Spankie and P. Wenman, each with 3. Mr. C.B. Heath made an even score of 2 1/2 points to claim fourth place, while Messrs. J. Black and C. Wardhaugh shared 5th and 6th places, each on 1 1/2 points. The tournament, though small, was a fighting one, with just 2 of the 15 games played being drawn, and with every competitor recording at least one victory and suffering at least one defeat. Indeed, the two games presented below - unfortunately all that we have received from the event - represent the only loss sustained by the Champion, Mr. Gibson, and the sole triumph scored by Mr. Wardhaugh, one of the bottom markers.

Next year's Congress, we understand, is to be held at Glasgow.

Herewith the games.  In the following encounter Mr. Wenham takes the measure of Mr. Gibson, whose 16...Ne8 leads to dire consequences.

Mr. Wardhaugh essays the Danish Gambit and at first achieves little thereby, but then rallies to defeat Mr. Heath, offering his Queen along the way.

Monday, February 24

Teichmann-Spielmann match, Game 3: Teichmann tops Spielmann in sparkling miniature, leads 2-1

Richard Teichmann won the third game of his match at Leipzig vs. Rudolf Spielmann in sparkling style, sacrificing first a Knight and then a Bishop en route to a quick and decisive 19-move victory. Teichmann now leads the six-game series by the score of 2-1. The player holding the White pieces has won each of the first three encounters, a trend Spielmann will hope to maintain in the fourth game, when he will again have the move.

Today's clash saw Teichmann at his best, and is certain to make the rounds of the world's chess press. White opened with the King's pawn, to which Spielmann replied with the Sicilian Defense. The contest followed the course of a game between Mason and Maroczy from the London tournament of 1899 until Black's 9th turn, when Spielmann chose 9...Bb4 over Maroczy's 9...Be7. Teichmann pursued his attack with vigor, bringing his forces rapidly into play and striking hard after Spielmann erred with 14...Qb6?, cited by experts as the losing move, in place of which Black ought better have selected 14...Qc7. The pawn sacrifice 15.b4! cxb4 served as a mere prelude to the Knight offer 16.Nxd5!, shattering Black's position. After the further 16...exd5 17.e6 Spielmann, in dire straits, lashed out with 17...f5, but this desperate thrust proved unavailing, as 18.exd7+ Kxd7 19.Bxf5+! forced Black's resignation, a justifiable decision in view of impending heavy material loss.

The annotated game score is herewith appended.


Sunday, February 23

Yorkshire defeats Cheshire in county match

The recent dispatch received from England included news of a county match between sides representing Yorkshire and Cheshire, held at Sheffield on the 17th ult. and being one of the opening contests in the battle for this year's Northern Union Championship. The Yorkshire men turned out in full force, with three players of Master strength at the head of their 26-player squad, as H.E. Atkins, many times British Champion, held down first board, followed by current British Champion F.D. Yates on second board and Mr. George Shories, veteran of several continental tourneys, on fourth. At the time of posting the dispatch the Yorkshire representatives had assured themselves of victory, having built the considerable lead of 17-4, with 5 games yet to be adjudicated, a result perhaps not unexpected given the overall strength of their side. (Let it be noted to his credit, however, that Cheshire's second board H.B. Lund did record a victory over Yates, one of only two losses suffered by Yorkshire in the 21 games decided to date.)

We present one of the games from the match, in which Mr. Shories, as second player in a Queen's Gambit Declined, defeats the Cheshire fourth board Mr. F.J. Macdonald, whose efforts to establish an early spatial advantage on the Queen-side are undone by his opponent's resolute play in the center of the board.


Saturday, February 22

Teichmann-Spielmann match, Game 2: Spielmann, with victory, levels score at 1-1

Rudolf Spielmann struck back in the second game of his Leipzig match vs. Richard Teichmann, scoring a victory with the White pieces to level the score of the six-game contest at 1-1. Spielmann opened with the Scotch Gambit 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Bc4, a debut well-suited to his enterprising style, with the game following old and familiar paths until Teichmann at his ninth turn played 9...dxc3, a move that we cannot recall ever having seen before. Queens were exchanged at the 15th move, and the resulting endgame soon turned in favor of Spielmann owing to his greater command of space and to the weakness of the opposing c-pawn, whose defense required the attention of nearly all Black's pieces. By the 30th move Spielmann, with his Knight established at e6 and a Queen-side attack underway, appeared to enjoy every prospect of success, so that Teichmann, unwilling quietly to await the further deterioration of his position, opted to lash out with the Knight sacrifice 30...Nxf5, an offer that freed his game and left him with two mobile central pawns in return for the piece. Spielmann, however, was not to be denied, and soon brought his superior forces to bear against the Black King. White's 42.Nxd5 cleverly won a pawn, while the sequence 47.Nb4+ Kxb2 48.R3f2+ Ka3 49.Rb1 constructed a mating net from which Teichmann could escape only at the further cost of the exchange, thus leaving Spielmann a full Rook ahead in return for two harmless pawns. Black resigned at the 55th move. With this equalizing victory by Spielmann the contest in essence begins anew, and we eagerly look forward to more captivating chess from these two first-rate exponents of our noble game.

We present the score below. The third game is scheduled for tomorrow, 23 February.


Friday, February 21

Teichmann-Spielmann match: Teichmann takes first game in 25 moves

Richard Teichmann defeated Rudolf Spielmann in 25 moves to take the first game of their match at Leipzig. Teichmann, having the move, chose the Four Knights' Opening, with the contest following the path of an earlier encounter between the same players from the Breslau tourney of two years ago. White at his 11th turn varied with 11.Ng5 in preference to 11.Bg5, which had led to a quick draw in the Breslau game. Soon thereafter Spielmann spurned a chance for equality offered by 14....Qd7 and instead selected 14...Kb8, a move that entailed the loss of the exchange in return for a pawn. Whether this was a deliberate sacrifice by the imaginative Austrian Master or merely a simple oversight is difficult to determine, as Black did gain certain attacking prospects in return for his material investment. Spielmann at his 20th move elected to forgo the capture of a second pawn via 20...Bg3, perhaps fearing the the reply 21.Qe7!, forcing the exchange of Queens, would lead to an advantageous endgame for White, whose Rooks would stand poised to enter the Black position. Nevetheless, the move chosen by Spielmann, 20...Qd4, allowed the first player to consolidate his position with 21.c3 and 22.Kg2, and Black resigned at the 25th move, a full exchange in arrears and with his attacking chances extinguished.

We reproduce the game below.

Thursday, February 20

More news from Hamburg: Dr. Lasker to visit next week; Paul Krüger wins club Championship;

The Hamburg Chess Club remains a busy hive of activity. In our previous entry we reported the recent visit of Richard Teichmann to that society; today we have learned that the World Champion himself, Dr. Lasker, is scheduled pay a call at the club next week, at which time he will give an exhibition of simultaneous play, the first such performance by the Doctor of which we are aware since his engagement at Stuttgart two months ago. Look to this space for coverage of the event.

Our readers had previously been offered two games from the latest Championship tournament of the Hamburg club, victories by Herren Schönmann and Studt. We can now report that those gentlemen finished the 12-man round-robin tourney in joint 2nd-3rd place, each on 8 points, one point behind the winner and new club Champion Herr Paul Krüger, who made the excellent score of 9-2 without the loss of a game. Our Hamburg correspondent notes with justifiable satisfaction that all competitors - even those at the bottom of the score table - completed their playing schedule, so that there were no withdrawals and all 66 games of the tournament were in fact decided over the board. We would encourage certain members of our American clubs to emulate this honorable example. In such circumstances we feel it only fitting to give recognition to every member of the field by presenting the final standings in full: Krüger 9; Schönmann, Studt 8; Bier, Schütte 7; Schwartz 5 1/2; Dimer, Kluxen, Ladendorf 4; Heinsohn 3 1/2; van Groningen, Hallgarten 3.   We present below three games from the tournament.

Here club Champion Krüger punishes the rather exotic opening play of Herr van Groningen, concluding matters with a pretty Queen-side attack:

Herr Schönmann is likewise most formidable when on the attack, as he demonstrates vs. Herr Kluxen:

In our final offering of the day Herren Schönmann and Krüger play to a hard-fought draw. Notes based on those by Herr Schönmann.

Tuesday, February 18

Teichmann visits Hamburg club; German Master to meet Spielmann in Leipzig match

From Germany we learn that Richard Teichmann fulfilled an engagement at the Hamburg Chess Club during the first week of February. The German Master faced some of the strongest members of that club in single and consultation games, acquitting himself most honorably, and in particular providing several fine examples of endgame skill. We reproduce two contests from the engagement below. In the first Teichmann defeats the consulting pair of Herren Buschka and Studt by exploiting a small error in the calculations of his opponents; in the latter the visitor employs a temporary piece sacrifice to bring about a winning endgame vs. Herr Schönmann.

We have also been apprised that Teichmann is set to meet Rudolf Spielmann in a six-game match at Leipzig, a contest scheduled to begin tomorrow, and on which we hope to report in full.

Herewith two of the games played by Teichmann in Hamburg. 

Monday, February 17

John Watkinson: Youthful vigor in old age

We have long felt that chess play, among its many other benefits, can serve to keep one's mental faculties in fine working order even in the face of advancing years. As evidence of this contention we present a game won not long ago by John Watkinson, known to many of our readers as the founder and former editor of the British Chess Magazine. Mr. Watkinson, born before La Bourdonnais and McDonnell met in their famous series, can still be found in action in Yorkshire at the Huddersfield Chess Club, the organization he established in 1852 and as whose president he has served for much of the past sixty years, most recently in 1912-13. In the following encounter, played at the Huddersfield Club, the venerable gentleman parries Black's threatening attack with the cool 23.Kh1! and goes on to score the game to his credit a few moves thereafter. May we all play so well in our ninth decade.


Saturday, February 15

Knights in the corner

We offer two games from the packet recently received from England. In each a Black Knight is prompted by the exigencies of defense to take up a rather forlorn position on a corner square, there to remain until defeat is at hand. The fact that a rare move is played early on in each contest is, we feel, in some way responsible for the later fate of the cornered Knights, for when a game deviates from "book" lines the resultant unfamiliar situation often gives rise to unusual play. Let the reader judge for himself.

Our first game is taken from a return match contested on the 31st ult. between London's Metroplitan Club and a visiting team representing the North Manchester Chess Club. These two squads had fought to an honorable 8 1/2 - 8 1/2 draw at Manchester last April; on the present occasion the Londoners secured the victory by a score of 9-7. The player of the White pieces in this third-board contest, Mr. C.E.C. Tattersall, will be known to many of our readers as the compiler of the landmark collection of studies A Thousand Endgames, published a few years ago. Mr. Tattersall's opponent, Mr. A. Caplan, declines the King's Gambit with the uncommon 2...Nc6 and soon finds the normal development of his forces well-nigh impossible.

Our other featured contest of the day comes from a match played at Edinburgh on January 10th between the Newcastle and Edinburgh clubs, won by the home side 7 1/2 - 4 1/2. Mr. Price of Newcastle opts for a move unknown to us, 7.e5, in the 3...d6 defense to the Ruy Lopez, and gains the victory via a King-side attack - though perhaps not without some assistance from his opponent, who in the course of the defense retreats his Knight to the h8-square, where it stands as a fitting counterpart to Black's a8-Knight in the previous game.


Friday, February 14

American Consul Donegan leads Magdeburg to victory over Dessau

We have once before in this space written of Alfred W. Donegan, United States Consul posted to Magdeburg, Germany and most proficient exponent of our noble game. Consul Donegan continues his successful chess exploits overseas, having led a team from Magdeburg to a narrow victory over Dessau in a match played on the 8th inst. The chess-playing diplomat employed the Sicilian Defense to defeat Herr Hering of Dessau on first board in the contest, won by the Magdeburg side by the score of 4 victories to 3, with 2 games drawn.

We present below the win by Consul Donegan, in which Black takes advantage of White's rather indifferent opening play to obtain a large advantage on the Queen's flank and afterward easily brushes aside his opponent's belated attempts to mount an attack on the other wing.


Thursday, February 13

British Champion F.D. Yates in Birmingham

We have received via today's post a packet containing a number of games played recently in England, the best of which we plan to share with our readers over the coming weeks. One contest that immediately caught our eye was the subjoined lively clash between British Champion F.D. Yates and Mr. Hubert E. Price, played during an engagement by the former at the Birmingham Chess Club in January. While in Birmingham Yates twice defeated Mr. Price in single combat, and in addition scored to his credit an encounter vs. Mr. Price and Mr. A.J. Mackenzie playing in consultation. The British Champion also gave an exhibition of simultaneous chess during his stay.

The game below features an attractive attack by Yates against the French Defense of Mr. Price, and is particularly noteworthy for two offers of the Queen, one by White in the course of his attack, and the other by Black as a clever attempt at defense. In neither case could the Queen profitably be taken, as the notes make clear.


Wednesday, February 12

Black wins Brooklyn Chess Club Championship; Defeats Schroeder in dramatic clash

Roy T. Black has captured the Championship of the Brooklyn Chess Club for the fourth time in six years, reclaiming the title after a two-year hiatus. Black scored 10 1/2 points from 13 games in the Championship tourney to finish full two points ahead of Manfred Schroeder on 8 1/2. The decisive encounter between Messrs. Black and Schroeder proved a most thrilling affair, and is widely considered one of the finest battles ever contested at the Brooklyn Club.  In it, Mr. Schroeder, as second player in a Center Counter Game, sacrificed first a Knight and then a Rook to inaugurate a fearsome mating attack. Mr. Black in his turn found the only possible defense, counter-sacrificing his two Bishops on consecutive moves to stave off immediate disaster. The result of these violent transactions left Mr. Black an exchange to the good, but by no means out of danger, as Mr. Schroeder, disdaining a possible draw and still in hot pursuit of the White King, continued his fierce assault. The game reached its climax at the 36th move when Mr. Schroeder, on the attack and with two connected passed pawns in return for the exchange, advanced 36...g2?, overlooking the cunning trap laid by his opponent on the previous turn. Mr. Black immediately sacrificed his Queen via 37.Qxd7+!, a sudden and unexpected blow forcing checkmate in three more moves. The contest, which the reader will find appended, does great credit to both players, and will provide many hours' entertainment for those of an analytical bent.

The notes to the following game are based on those by the winner.