Friday, January 8, 2010

A Rubinstein Simultaneous Game, Tel Aviv, 1931 (Edited: Original Game Score Found)

The following is, the Palestine Post says, a game by Akiba Rubinstein (White) against I. Greinetz, played in a simultaneous exhibition in Tel Aviv, 1931, and given both by the Palestine Post, Aug. 12, 1949, and -- originally -- in Menachem Mendel Marmorosh's chess column in Davar, 29.5.1931.

Annotation and punctuation are by Marmorosh (The Palestine Post simply retained some of them and dropped the rest). What's more, the original version of this post had a nonsensical game score, which was corrected. I changed Marmorosh's '(?)' to '?!' (dubious) and (!) to '!?' (interesting), as was probably his intention.

The Palestine Post either mistakes Marmorosh's '(!)' evaluation of 18. f5 for a "regular" exclamation point, or disagrees with him about the move's value. I kept Marmorosh's evaluation.

1. c4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Bg5 Nbd7 5. e3 c6 6. Nf3 Qa5 7. cxd5 cxd5 8. Bd3 Bb4 9. Qc2 Bxc3+ 10. bxc3 b5?! 11. 0-0? Nb6! 12. Rab1 a6 13. Ne5 Bb7 14. f4 Rc8 15. Rb3?

Better is 15. Rbc1.

15. ...Ne4! 16. Bxe4 dxe4 17. Qe2

White gives up the pawn and looks for compensation on the king's side. Black threats are 17. ... f6 and 17. ... Bd5.

17. ...Bd5

18. f5!? Nc4

Solves the difficulties. Accepting the sacrifice would have given White many possibilities.

19. Qg4 Nxe5 20. dxe5 exf5 21. Qxf5 0-0 22. Bf6 gxf6 23. exf6

If 23. Rf4, then 23. ... Rfd8!

23. ... Kh8!

Now 23. ... Rfd8 would have lost in a different way: 24. Rd1!

24. Qxd5 Qxa2 25. Rxb5 Qe2 26. Rb7 Qxe3+ 27. Kh1 Qd3 28 .Qf5 Rxc3 29. h3 Qe2 30. Rf4 Qe1+ 31. Kh2 Qg3+ 32. Kg1

32. ... e3! 33. Re7

33. Rb2 was necessary, but the game was lost for White in any case (after Rg8 and Rc1+).

33. ... Rg8 34. Rg4 Rc1+

and mates in three moves.


  1. Hello,Thanks for presenting this game. Please correct the typos on white's first and black's third move.

  2. I did. Thank you for calling my attention to it. I also found the original game score.