Thursday, May 01, 2008

London 1851 Round 1 Wrap Up Part 1

I went back into the time machine and pulled a few more nuggets from round 1 of this first international event. Much to your dismay, I am inevitably reviewing and annotating every single game so far. Thus, I will have to wrap up the first round in two parts as the field was wide in this knock out elimination event.

Some of the lesser known losers of this round were a result of the Feud between George Walker's larger London Chess Club and Howard Staunton's club oddly named "St. George's". Though he had the club with the right name, the London Club players George Walker, George Perigal, and George W. Medley would have made for stronger competition in comparison with the substitutes that ended up playing: E.S. Kennedy, Edward Lowe, James R. Mucklow( Incidentally won in this round) , and M. Brodie. Henry Buckle, a jovial player of the time could not attend.
The Committee of Management was under the leadership of the Duke of Marlborough. Staunton was its Secretary and most of its members were from Staunton's chess club, St George's. This political climate was enough of a catalyst for George Walker's London Club to declare a boycott to the event. Hmm, who's name do we remember more, and who has a chess set design named after him?

As a result of the rivalries between the two clubs, I can see why the then 15 year old Paul Morphy inscribed in his copy of The Chess Tournament, London 1851 by Howard Staunton published in 1852, " ... and some devilish bad games." The first round had a couple of howlers.

In the game Staunton vs Brodie, an early queen sortie results in a fatal 15 move miniature. The Second match with Brodie vs Staunton, is a good demonstration by Staunton on how to exploit under developed opponents.

The match between Mucklow vs Kennedy E has a nice "how to handle a pawn advantage with dueling Knights" endgame if you can stomach the backward opening play. The second match of these two amateurs isn't pretty but Mucklow does earn the point. The first game takes the form of a lame Zukertort 70 years before that system was better refined. The second was how not to play a Taimonov Sicilian 100 years before its time.

Aside from the previously post Anderssen first round matches against the first blunderprone, I want to point out the matches between Horwitz and Bird as well as Wyvill and Loewe. Horwitz was a well known endgame strategist in Germany. In the first match against Bird , Horwitz was behind in a Rook versus Rook and Knight endgame when he finds a resourceful perpetual check to pull off a draw. The second match, Bird beats him in his own comfort zone. The two are evenly matched by round 3 when Horwitz uses Zugzwang to his advantage. Bird gets the upper hand coming out of the opening as he weakens Horwitz's pawn structure. This deciding game ends with Bird taking too big of a risk and gambits a piece for control of the kingside and center. Bird slips into a passive coma and Horwitz barges in, sacs his queen and advances a passed pawn to get the point.
Wyvill's match against the lesser known Loewe are both showcases in how to make best use of a mobile pawn center in both game one and game two.

Up next, I promise to cover the one man called "The British Sloth" ( Elijah Williams) for his speedy 2.5 hours per move on the board that caused a revolution in chess to bring on time control the following year! Incidentally, The sloth was a student of Staunton's!


Rook House said...

2.5 hours a move?? Wow, and I thought Louis Paulsen was the slowest player back then.

Awesome site George!! Keep up the outstanding work and let me know if you ever need anything.


transformation said...

nice going george.

BTW, i think of you every single day. now that i am done with the heaviest lifting on my 'Classic GM game Database of 5,231 games', i am back to viewing classic games, right with you in kind. i had to process pennies shy of 2,000 games, viewing many of them if only briefly to check integrity of versions. long story...

of course, when i had left off i had just finished viewing the GM-Ram unit, and started onto Soltis, Greatest Games of the Twentieth Century.

not to get off subject, as your post is about an entirely different flavor. nevertheless, when and if you move up to the next epoque (and i dont mean that to sound sarcastic, but matter of fact only), that would be a lovely next step.

man, did Soltis nail those games!

when i finish my check of my check, i will send everybody a BCC inviting folks to request an update, in lieu of sending file in entirety so no one gets what they dont want or need.

warmest, and, again, great to see you so stoked up. back to seattle this summer or your daughter coming back to microSerf for her summer break as an intern?

smart kids; smart mom. smart dad. big hearts all over.

Temposchlucker said...

Rating updated