Sunday, January 9, 2011

Capablanca's worst moment

The great Cuban master of positional chess didn't make many blunders in his career and left us countless positional masterpieces. This however was his moment to forget!

White: Sämisch
Black: Capablanca
Karlsbad 1929

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.a3 Bxc3+ 5.bxc3 d6 6.f3 c5 7.e4 Nc6 8.Be3 b6 9.Bd3

In a fairly normal Nimzo type of position Capablanca got caught only thinking about strategy and played 9...Ba6??

This just loses immediately and after 10.Qa4 Bb7 11.d5 white can resign and indeed I believe Capablanca did!


  1. This light square bishop has many sad history... Karpov was defeated after a blunder in this kind of position...and others GM's. It's a dangerous pattern...
    And Vishy defeat to Zapata? The famous 9 moves? Chess is a tought game ...

  2. Actually Capa played this out to move 62.

  3. You are right! Remarkable how long the game lasted actually. Just saw the diagram in a book and it didn't go further so I figured he resigned like Karpov vs Christiansen.