Games
[Event "London BCF Congress"] [Site "London"] [Date "1922.??.??"] [Round "10"] [White "Alekhine, Alexander"] [Black "Yates, Frederick"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "D64"] [Annotator "Sean Marsh"] [PlyCount "75"] [EventDate "1922.07.31"] [EventType "tourn"] [EventRounds "15"] [EventCountry "ENG"] [Source "ChessBase"] [SourceDate "1999.07.01"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 {An interesting move order. If White continues with 3.Nc3 then Black has the option of playing the Nimzo-Indian Defence. Here Alekhine decides to avoid that defence and the game transposes to a Queen's Gambit as soon as Black plays 3. ....d5.} 3. Nf3 d5 {Other options at this point are 3. . ..b6 (the Queen's-Indian Defence) 3. .... Bb4+ (the Bogo-Indian Defence) and 3. ...c5 (the Modern Defence)} 4. Nc3 Be7 5. Bg5 O-O 6. e3 Nbd7 {There now begins a small sequence designed to gain a move (known as a battle for tempo). White wants to play Bd3 at some point but if he does it now then Black will reply with 7. ....dxc4 essentially forcing the bishop to waste a move because of having to recapture immediately with 8.Bxc4. Ideally, White would like to defer any move of his king's bishop until Black plays ...dxc4 so he can recapture the pawn and develop his bishop in one move with Bxc4. Therefore both players proceed with a couple of other standard developing moves before one side gives up the battle for tempo.} 7. Rc1 c6 8. Qc2 Re8 {White has run out of normal moves and must develop his bishop, whereupon Black duly replies with the expected capture.} 9. Bd3 dxc4 10. Bxc4 Nd5 {Diagram [#] Yates wants to exchange some pieces to free up his position, an idea familiar from Alekhine's game with Michel. (Not by WAF; This refers to the game preceding this in the book.) Here, Alekhine's bishop is on g5 instead of h4, so he cannot avoid the bishop exchange. Therefore, he strives to keep the game complicated by ensuring the knights remain on the board.} 11. Ne4 f5 $6 ({A risky move, especially against Alekhine. Yates attacks the centralised knight but weakens hisow king's defence. He should have played} 11... Qa5+ { exploiting the fact that Alekhine hasn't yet castled. Alekhine would then have had the choice of interposing with} 12. Qd2 {(allowing an exchange of queen's which wouldn't have pleased him).} (12. Kf1 {giving up the right to castle which can't be a good idea) or retreating with one of his knights to block the check (which leads to complications which may be slightly in Black's favour, for example})) (11... Qa5+ 12. Nc3 Nb4 {attacking the queen and also discovering an attack by the black queen or the bishop on g5).}) 12. Bxe7 Qxe7 13. Ned2 b5 14. Bxd5 cxd5 15. O-O {Diagram [#] Yates has managed to exchange some pieces and stabilize the centre. The sructure of pawns on d5, e6 and f5 are known as a Stonewall formation. It can be difficult to break down but Alekhine has two advantages in this position, he has total control of the open c-file and Black's bishop is a very poor piece as it is hemmed in by its own pawns.} a5 16. Nb3 a4 17. Nc5 Nxc5 18. Qxc5 Qxc5 19. Rxc5 b4 20. Rfc1 Ba6 21. Ne5 Reb8 {Diagram [#]Material is equal but Yates has major problems of a positional nature. He can never chase the knight out of the e5 hole and he is going to struggle to prevent an invasion by White's rooks along the c-file. Alehine's plan is fairly simple. He is going to ensure that all his pieces - including his king - are in ideal positions and then he will strike a killer-blow. There's no hurry and White can take all the time he needs as Black can't generate any serious counterplay.} 22. f3 b3 23. a3 h6 24. Kf2 Kh7 25. h4 Rf8 26. Kg3 Rfb8 27. Rc7 Bb5 28. R1c5 Ba6 29. R5c6 Re8 30. Kf4 Kg8 31. h5 Bf1 32. g3 Ba6 33. Rf7 Kh7 34. Rcc7 Rg8 {An excellent example of positional domination. Everything is now in place for a decisive thrust which Alekhine delivers with a little pirouette from his knight.} 35. Nd7 $1 {Threatening a terrible knight fork with 36.Nf6+ exploiting the pin on g-pawn.} Kh8 36. Nf6 Rgf8 ({Black still couldn't capture the knight as} 36... gxf6 {allows} 37. Rh7# ) 37. Rxg7 Rxf6 38. Ke5 {A fabulous finishing touch by the king. Black's rook is under attack and if it moves back to f8 then White checkmates with 38.Rh7+ and 39.Reg7 mate. Defending the rook with 38. ..... Raf8 allows the same checkmate. Black is going to lose his rook and will be checkmated shortly afterwards, so he resigned.} 1-0