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A tantalizing Tarrasch masterpiece with GM Saptarshi Roy

by Satanick Mukhuty - 01/10/2019

It is said that you can never know a subject well without knowing its roots, its history. "We are not makers of history. We are made by history", said Martin Luther King Jr. Here in also lies the value of examining old chess games from the past. A Morphy or Steinitz might easily appear to be obsolete in today's age of stupendous engines and artificial intelligence but in reality they are treasure houses of timeless, elemental chess ideas. In the third part of the Tuesday King Hunts series, Grandmaster Saptarshi Roy once again brings us a classic encounter, a century old masterpiece played between two great legends, Aron Nimzowitsch and Siegbert Tarrasch. If you are an aggressive player and want to enrich your arsenal of attacking tools and techniques with new ideas, then this might be the perfect time to sit back and soak in a blast from the past.

Tuesday King Hunts by GM Saptarshi Roy Part III: Nimzowitsch - Tarrasch 1914

The two great masters - Aron Nimzowitsch (left) and Siegbert Tarrasch (right)

Nimzowitsch and Tarrasch were not only strong chess players but also exceptionally deep thinkers of the game. Both of them have been instrumental in shaping our understanding of modern chess. Their theories and hypotheses have survived the tests of time and are a testament to their extraordinary understanding of the royal game. The encounter we are about to spectate was played about 105 years ago in 1914 and we see Tarrasch playing his own opening system here with ...d5 and ...c5 and bringing about a picturesque finish. So without further ado, let us dive into this mouthwatering gem of a game!


Aron Nimzowitsch - Siegbert Tarrasch, St. Petersburg 1914

Position after 10...Qe7: A sort of symmetrical position is on board where both players have pushed their c and d pawns. Give yourself some time here and try to understand the dynamics in play. What would be the plan ahead for both sides in this position?

A critical moment in the game. It is Black to play, can you find the move that Tarrasch played here? (Check annotations below for answer)

While attacking one must always remain alert of the opponent's resources. In the above position it appears White will easily halt Black's infiltration once he manages to bring the queen to the aid with Qg2 or Qh2... What would you do here if you were in Black's shoes?

The coup de grace! Can you find the final blow that Black dealt White in this position? Check the full game below with GM Saptarshi Roy's annotations to know all the answers!

And here is the video where Saptarshi explains all the intricacies of this game in detail:

If you have any feedback for these videos or would like to get in touch with GM Saptarshi Roy, you can do so by writing to him on his email:

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