Monday, 1 November 2010

Last Lasker Victory?

As I've mentioned on this blog previously, I've always thought that Emanuel Lasker was a vastly underrated figure in the court of public opinion. I would certainly have him in my top 5 of all time great chess players, and not just at number 5 either. I've heard various reasons for his lack of recognition, including the fact he established no school or style, and that he didn't write much (but neither did Capablanca).
Now I'm not sure about the second reason, as I recently purchased a copy of "Lasker's Manual of Chess". According to the preface it was originally published in 1925, and is what I would term an 'old fashioned' chess text book, covering the entire chess spectrum, including how the pieces move, opening theory, how to play end games, and pretty much everything else in between. I suspect in those days the idea was to try and produce "The" chess book, rather than specialise.
While the book is full of a number of interesting games (from Lasker and others) I've instead dug up what is possibly Lasker's last victory (at least in a published game). It is against Ossip Bernstein and was played in New York in 1940.

Lasker,Emanuel - Bernstein,Ossip [B22]
New York game New York, 1940

1.e4 c5 2.c3 d5 3.exd5 Qxd5 4.d4 e6 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.Be2 cxd4 7.cxd4 Bb4+ 8.Nc3 Nf6 9.0-0 Qd6 10.a3 Ba5 11.Qa4 0-0 12.Bg5 a6 13.Bxf6 gxf6 14.Rad1 b5 15.Qb3 Bc7 16.Ne4 Qe7 17.Qc3 Bb7 18.d5 Be5 19.Nxe5 Nxe5 20.f4 Rac8 21.d6 Qd8 22.Nxf6+ Qxf6 23.Qxe5 Qxe5 24.fxe5 Rc5 25.d7 Rd8 26.Bh5 Rxe5 27.Bxf7+ Kg7 28.Rd3 Rg5 29.g3 Rd5 30.Rxd5 Bxd5 31.Be8 a5 (D)
32.Rf7+ Kg8 33.Kf2 Bc6 34.Re7 e5 35.Bf7+ Kf8 36.Re8+ Rxe8 37.Bxe8 1-0

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Shaun

It's an interesting game but in Quarterly for Chess History number 12 there's an article on The Russian Myth of Lasker's Last Tournament which has this game played by Edward Lasker (against Sidney Bernstein)and mentions Emanuel's last tournament as Nottingham 1936. The myth extends from some Russian mistranslations and sloppy indexing in Chess Review.