GAME 10

Duras - Bernstein

St Petersburg 1909


Ruy Lopez

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.d3 d6 5.c4 g6 6.d4 exd4 7.Nxd4 Bd7 8.Nc3 Bg7 9.Bxc6 bxc6 10.Bg5 h6 11.Bh4 O-O 12.O-O Re8 13.Re1 Rb8 14.Rb1 c5 15.Nb3


White:Duras;Black:Bernstein

A surprisingly weak move. The Knight is here out of play. On f3 he would have been of better use, as e4-e5 was first of all threatened.  At all events 15.Nf3 Bc6 for after 16.e5 Bxf3? 17.Qxf3 dxe5 18.Rbd1 Black would be lost, e. g. 18...Qe7 19.Nd5

15...Bc6 16.Qd3

 Black's 15th has prevented 16.Nd5 because of 16...g5

16...Qc8

The commencement of an attack conducted equally well from a strategical and tactical point of view.

17.Nd2 Nd7 18.b3 Qa6 19.Qc2 Qa5 20.Ne2

White:Duras;Black:Bernstein

 I f20.Nd5 Bxd5 21.cxd5 Qc3 22.Rbc1 Qxc2 23.Rxc2 g5 24.Bg3 f5 25.f3 f4 26.Bf2 Ne5 and Black's game would, at least, not have been inferior. After the text, however, White appears to be irretrievably lost.

20...Nf8 21.f3 Ne6 22.Bf2 Bd7

Intending to play 23...Nd4. But first he renders the c7-pawn mobile.

23.Nf1 Nd4 24.Qd3 Nc6 25.Nc1 Qa3

Brilliant play. The a-pawn is thus fixed in its weak position.

26.Ne3 Nb4 27.Qd2 a5 28.Nd5 Nxd5 29.exd5

 This loses forthwith. If he had retaken 29.cxd5 Black would have continued 29...c4 30.Bd4 would have been a mistake, as after 30...Qb4 31.Rd1 (31.Qxb4? Bxd4) 31...c3 Black would have won at once. Black's play in this game is of the highest order.

29...Rxe1 30.Bxe1 Bf5 31.Nd3 Bxd3 32.Qxd3 Qxa2 33.h3 a4 34.b4 cxb4 35.Rxb4 Rxb4 36.Bxb4 Qb3 37.Qd2 a3 38.Bxa3 Qxa3

0 - 1

2h. 04 - 1h. 19

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